krisho: (Junhong)
i don't like ([personal profile] krisho) wrote2016-11-18 08:02 pm

i'm too good at leaving love. (3/3)



She turned around to face Junsoo, hand on the doorknob. She was still slightly flushed from the way he smiled at her as he first saw her in the restaurant, to how he laughed at all her stories about her everyday life, to how he refused to let her come up alone, as if he was soaking up every second with her. It was the greatest night of her life.

And with how he stepped forward to cup her cheek and press her gently against her front door, he wanted to make it better.

(The director refused to give them guidance for this scene. He wanted their kiss to be as natural as possible, even if involved blunders and awkward laughs. They wouldn't treat this like a kiss in a cheesy drama; it was a one-take affair that wouldn't be edited over with dramatic music or a glow filter that exaggerated the magic of the moment.)

Junsoo bumped her nose before he dove in for the kiss, enjoying how her hands found their way to his waist. They kissed with curiosity, a little hope as they smiled against each other's mouths. Junsoo hesitated for only a second and tried to pull away, but Jihyun cupped his face and slid her hands to his hair.

"Don't let this night end," she whispered. (That wasn't part of the script.)

"I have to," Junsoo said. "But," he pulled away from her, smiling as she whined softly, "I can make it happen again."


"Brilliant adlibs! For everyone else, that's it for today," the director said. He clapped their backs as they walked off the set. Joonmyun and Eunhye smiled, laughing off the slightly awkward atmosphere. That was a good screen kiss, but they weren't particularly close enough for them to shrug it off easily.

Joonmyun stayed in the break room, looking for a quick snack before he would head home. Yifan didn't come to filming that day, said he was sick with a fever. Joonmyun thought of visiting him, but he was tired too.

"Hey," a voice said. It was Eunhye, fresh faced and still sweetly smiling at him. "Good job today."

"You too," said Joonmyun.

They made their own cups of coffee and grabbed cookies, looking outside the room if their managers were anywhere near them. Eunhye laughed and sat down on the couch while Joonmyun stood by the sink.

"Can I ask something a little," Eunhye swallowed, "personal, maybe?"

"Sounds ominous," Joonmyun teased. He took a sip of his shitty instant coffee. "Shoot."

Eunhye shifted in her seat. "You and Yifan were close before, right?"

Joonmyun snorted. "Understatement of the year, yes. We were close, but I'm sure you can search that on the internet and you'll find out all about it. Where did this come from?"

"You just…" She chuckled awkwardly. "You seem like you two have a past."

Joonmyun stiffened. "We were friends long before we were put in the same group. We became very, very close, and then he left. I was hurt, and our lives became a lot more difficult from then on. I didn't have any contact with him for years, so I guess this is kind of our reunion of sorts." He smiled into his cup. "We do have a past, but that's behind us now."

"Oh," Eunhye said, noting his sheepish grin and the way he winced as he talked about their past. "It's pretty obvious, you know."

"What?" he asked, confused.

"You two." Her smirk said it all. "At first I thought it was awkward because you two had a bad end as members of EXO, but now I get it."

"It's not—"

"I've worked with my ex before," she said. "A real one, not just a publicity stunt-type of ex. It was awkward, definitely, but we realized why we ended things while working with each other again. I don't think you're going through what I did."

She held up a hand before Joonmyun could get a word out. "I thought it was weird when you two were always awkward or staring at each other across the room. And whenever you two were talking, I couldn't even get a word out. It's like the tension between you was choking everyone else. They said it was because you two weren't on good terms as bandmates.

"But after a while… you should see how you look at each other." Eunhye smiled. "It's really cute. I don’t know how no one else sees it, but it's clear as day from where I’m standing."

Joonmyun didn't know how to respond, not because he would be lying if he said that there was nothing between them now, but because he would be lying if he said there was no possibility of something ever happening. After the incident in the past week, they had been pretty friendly, borderline flirty at times, but nothing more than that. He couldn't confirm her suspicions when, really, nothing had happened yet.


"I, uh, really don't know where this is all coming from, but," Joonmyun poured the contents of his terrible coffee down the drain and threw the cup in the bin, "I really don't know where this came from. Yifan and I were good friends, and we're slowly going back to that. That's it."

Eunhye smiled knowingly. "Sure, Joonmyun. I'll believe it when I stop seeing it."

When Yifan went back to filming two days later, Joonmyun couldn't really look at him in the eye. If Eunhye was right—and she probably was—everyone would figure it out. Joonmyun didn't want to think they were that easy to read, but his bandmates knew and his co-worker did too. That was enough for Joonmyun to keep his distance, just for a few hours on set.

"Remember, everyone. The second trailer's being released tonight. Post it on social media, tell your friends to watch it, don't let this flop!" one of the producers said. "Good night, and get home safe."

Joonmyun packed up his things. When he looked up from his bag, Yifan was by the doorway, holding his car keys in one hand and his coat on the other. "Dinner at my place?"

"Sure, give me a minute." Joonmyun smiled at him through the mirror and put on his coat. Junghwan nodded when he saw him go down to the parking space with Yifan, and Joonmyun purposely ignored the way Eunhye gazed at them, suspicious again.

Yifan set the car on autopilot as he leaned back and closed his eyes. "You okay?" asked Joonmyun.

"I haven't entirely recovered," Yifan said. "Are you okay with takeout?"

Joonmyun snorted. "When did we ever have anything other than takeout food?" He grinned at the blank expression on Yifan's face. "I'm fine with anything, okay? I'll order."

It was funny; they had already developed patterns and routines when they were together. Joonmyun would bring out the food, Yifan would set up the movie they used as background noise, and they would sit down on the floor, eating and talking for hours.

Joonmyun hadn't touched alcohol since that awful night, but he couldn't resist when Yifan opened a bottle of good wine and poured him a glass, regardless of how hard he tried to reject it. Two glasses in, and they were languidly leaning against the couch, laughing as Yifan opened the trailer to their movie on his giant TV.

Yifan cringed at the first scene. "Oh god, I didn't even watch the first trailer."

"I did," Joonmyun lamented. "I was so embarrassed."

"I hope this movie doesn't flop," said Yifan. "'Wu Yifan's return to the Korean entertainment industry, marked by a movie that tanked.' I might never show my face in this country again."

"That would be too bad," Joonmyun said, grinning as he finished his second glass. "I'd miss that pretty face."

"Really?" Yifan laughed. "So even if this movie does awfully, at least you got a glimpse of me, huh?"

"Yeah." Joonmyun grinned against the rim of his empty glass. "I'm a little tipsy."

"I can see that," said Yifan. "You realize you're flirting with me, right?"

Joonmyun looked at him with a heated smirk. "That was the intention."

”Oh.” Yifan was a little taken aback, but he wasn't backing down at that. "… Interesting."

Joonmyun put down his glass and leaned his head back. His alcohol tolerance was so awful; he was dizzy after two glasses of whatever potent wine Yifan gave him.

"Eunhye has a hunch that we were together then and we're dating now," he said. Yifan gaped at him, but he hid that surprise behind a smile and another long sip from his glass. "One of those is the truth. The other one? I don't even fucking know anymore."

"What do you want to do about that?" Yifan leaned forward.

Joonmyun shrugged. "Again, I don't know. Maybe we should just… let it happen." He laughed and bit his lip. "We said we wanted to go back to how we were; isn't that how we always got back together?"

"Just letting it happen?" Yifan stretched his long limbs and yawned. "Every single time, it just sort of happened."

"Let's leave it at that then." Joonmyun smiled and reached out to take Yifan's hand, intertwining their fingers as he often did nowadays. He felt for Yifan's pulse and trailed his finger up Yifan's arm. Yifan stopped his movements with his other hand.

"You should go," he murmured. Yifan was giving him that look again.

Joonmyun raised an eyebrow before shrugging it off and stumbling to look for his coat.

"If you say so."

Yifan walked him to the front door. Joonmyun turned around, cupped Yifan's cheek, stroked absently at his jaw for a while. "Good night, Yifan."

"I'll see you tomorrow," Yifan said, and he licked his lips as Joonmyun pulled his hand away.

As much as Joonmyun felt like leaning forward, teasing Yifan as he always did before, he couldn't. He couldn't look at Yifan as if he was the simple fling that Joonmyun wanted him to be. He wanted it to be easy, for them to talk and laugh and kiss as if it was nothing.

But Joonmyun didn't feel that way. Stupid alcohol, Joonmyun thought to himself. And as Yifan gently pushed him out the door, he needed a moment before he could walk away from the temptation of a man that he couldn't resist but he couldn't handle either. He wanted more, but what was he even looking for?

They kissed for the first time in nine years while washing the dishes after eating dinner.

No buildup, no tension, no fanfare. Just Joonmyun turning to face Yifan and pulling him down by the nape. Just Yifan mumbling against Joonmyun’s lips, talking about how much he missed this. Just the two of them. Just hands and lips and warm eyes and breaths fanning against their skin as they couldn't bear to pull away just yet.

“You're getting me wet,” Joonmyun said as Yifan slipped his hands underneath his shirt.

Yifan chucked. “That sounds promising.”

Joonmyun ran his hands under the water of the faucet and tangled his fingers in Yifan’s hair. Yifan groaned and pulled Joonmyun in, lost in the sensation of fingers massaging his scalp and a smile pressed against his lips.

A smile, bright and sweet. A hand, slowly warming with the touch of his skin. A stare, that look, haunting his mind as Joonmyun still felt like he needed more.

There was something different about them that night, something lighter in each step they took towards the samgyetang stall that was a few blocks away from Yifan’s apartment. Filming ended a bit late that night, but neither of them felt like going home just yet.

"This is…?" Joonmyun stopped at the corner of the block and stared at the row of stalls still bustling before them.

Yifan turned around, smiling sheepishly. "It's the same spot we went to when we were trainees."

Joonmyun chuckled and started walking towards the stall that Yifan approached. The young lady seemed to not recognize them as actors, but she greeted Yifan like a regular customer. "Oh. Who's this? A new customer?"

Yifan paused, smiled at Joonmyun, and answered, "A good friend."

"Really?" She cocked an eyebrow at them. "Sure. Two orders of samgyetang?"

"Yes, please." Joonmyun sat at one of the empty tables and waited as Yifan paid for their late-night dinner.

With the sound of happy young people laughing and dancing from across the street and a jaded musician busking from the other corner, they ate in peace, a pleasant semi-silence. Sometimes Joonmyun looked up from his bowl to look at Yifan, recall how he looked when they were still trainees who were young and hopeful.

Joonmyun reached out for his hand across the table, a little nervous, a little hopeful. Yifan's eyes grew in surprise, but he intertwined their fingers and smiled softly. "What's this about?"

Joonmyun shrugged. "I remembered us as trainees."

He laughed in response, squeezing Joonmyun's hand as a force of habit. "Not a lot of good thoughts, then?"

"No," Joonmyun shook his head, "those were the best days."

Yifan's face dropped. "I remember starving. And doubting myself."

"I remember meeting you." Joonmyun smiled. "I remember going out with all of our friends and doing nothing when we had enough energy to pick ourselves up off the floor. I remember our stupid birthday surprises."

Yifan laughed at that, but he sobered up as a thought crossed his mind. "I remember debuting as the best and the worst time of my life."

"Me too." Joonmyun let go of his hand.

Silence stretched out before them. Yifan opened his mouth several times as if he wanted to say something, but neither of them dared to say anything.

"I…" Yifan sighed. "I never told you about what I really felt like right after I left."

Joonmyun remembered the night that he last saw Yifan. It was after a showcase in Beijing. Everyone else was packing to leave for Seoul, and Yifan… just watched. Everyone else said their goodbyes, shook hands, hugged, and turned away before any resentment could make its way onto their faces.

Yifan approached Joonmyun last. They didn't talk to each other for the last two weeks; part of it was because it always hurt too much to see each other. The other part of it was because they decided to break it off just a week ago, and Joonmyun— no, both of them were too afraid to face the reality that it was really, really over.

But when Joonmyun saw Yifan that night, leaning against the doorway and smiling softly as he watched Joonmyun pack, he couldn't stop the heartbreak from pushing him towards Yifan in slow and hesitant steps. Yifan closed the door behind him and opened his arms to hold Joonmyun in a tight embrace.

"You were really touchy tonight. I missed that," said Yifan. Joonmyun felt himself smile against Yifan's shoulder. Joonmyun knew that neither of them was famous for fanservice, and doing it with each other wouldn't really benefit their popularity. He didn't care. He needed to stop Yifan before he started tearing up, before he showed any sign that something was terribly wrong.

"I'll miss you the most," Yifan mumbled against his hair. Joonmyun pulled back and cradled Yifan's face in his hands, pulling him forward to press their foreheads together. Yifan was the one who tilted his face and inched closer.

"Yifan," Joonmyun warned, knees wobbling as the warmth from Yifan's proximity spread through his body. Yifan kissed him then, holding Joonmyun by the waist as Joonmyun wrapped his arms around Yifan's neck and tiptoed to get closer. Joonmyun sighed against his mouth.

Yifan pulled back to press a kiss against the corner of his lips, his jaw, the side of his neck. Joonmyun slid his hands down to his chest and pushed him away softly, eyes dark and pulse racing.

"Stop," he whispered. "It's over."

Yifan pleaded with his eyes. "It doesn't have to end like this." Don't let this be our last moment together.

Joonmyun slipped his hands around Yifan's shoulders again, hugging him close. "I know. But let's not leave loose ends. I don't want to hope—" He stopped.

Yifan held his hand and squeezed lightly before stepping back, letting Joonmyun go back to packing. "Before we were anything more, we were friends." Joonmyun zipped his bag and turned to face Yifan again. "Let's end as that. Let's leave it at that."

"And what about everything else?" Yifan sounded tired, still desperate for some affirmation that Joonmyun was just as broken up about this as he was.

"It's over," repeated Joonmyun. "Goodbye."

And that still haunted Joonmyun. Always, every moment when it slipped into his mind. He pushed Yifan—he let him go, just like that—and it took them almost a decade before they reconnected. It took them nine years before they could be comfortable enough to talk about this again.

"It was terrifying, Joonmyun," said Yifan. He was playing with his rings, nervous as he brought it up again. "I was alone, and you weren't going to come for me again. It was my choice, but being there all alone and having to deal with everything by myself… I really missed you guys.

"And the worst part was the hate. It never ended. It was like my departure was branded on my forehead. I was a liar, a traitor, a user; they said it all. And in those moments, I just thought—" He paused. "I wish I could talk to you."

Joonmyun held his breath.

"The first few months were awful. The lawsuit was getting worse and worse, then suddenly Lu Han just called me and said he wanted to leave. He needed help to get out. Let me tell you, it felt so, so awful to help him go. I knew it was going to be even more difficult for you, but you understood, right?"

Joonmyun sighed. "I understood. We all suffered, and I'm a little envious of how brave you were to leave first. It's not easy, I know that."

"But you wish I stayed?"

"I always do."

Yifan stared at him, a little lost at Joonmyun's words. "What do you mean?"

"If you stayed, if we had stayed together," Joonmyun shrugged, "maybe something could have happened to us by now."

"Something like what?" Yifan smirked.

"Something great. Something life-changing, maybe." Joonmyun smiled sheepishly. "We could be married by now, who knows?"

Joonmyun stood up and wrapped his scarf around his neck again. "We'll never really know, will we?"

Joonmyun walked away from the stall, thanking the young lady who looked at him oddly, as if she were trying to remember where exactly she saw him before. Yifan chased after him, bracing himself against the cold wind. He caught up to him after crossing the road, a bit far from the bustling nightlife area. The streets were quieter here, and Yifan took his Joonmyun's wrist and pulled him aside.

"Who says that something great can't happen now?" Yifan pressed closer against him, holding Joonmyun by the waist now.

"Not here," Joonmyun whispered and he looked around to see if anyone was watching them. A scandal like this would end both of them.

I don't care, Yifan's eyes said, cupping his cheeks with cold hands before leaning forward for a heated kiss. It made Joonmyun's heart skip to know that Yifan still wanted him like this, and it hurt so good when Yifan pushed him back slightly until he made contact with the lamppost behind him, with the burning cold metal shocking him back to reality.

Yifan pulled away first, not without a lingering kiss on Joonmyun's bottom lip. Joonmyun chuckled in response, oblivious to the world around them. Someone could be taking a video of them and sending it to Dispatch, for all he cared.

"Just like London," Joonmyun said with a soft smile ghosting on his lips at the memory.

"We could make it like Amsterdam," Yifan said with a grin against Joonmyun's neck. Joonmyun's eyes darkened at the memory: warm hands, warm lips, soft sheets, eyes that begged him to stop, keep moving, begged him for more.

That same smile, pressed against his temple then. A few muttered words, something like stay with me or the sort. The feeling that he never wanted to be anywhere else in the world, that this could be home.

"Come up with me," Yifan whispered.

Joonmyun chuckled and pushed him back gently. "You know what that's going to lead to."

"That's the point." Yifan's smile was blinding, warm and inviting. "Let's not pretend that we don't want this, Joonmyun."

And he was right. Why was Joonmyun trying to lie to himself? Yifan took his hand, tugged him closer, and started walking towards his apartment building. Each step bounced back with excitement, nervousness, anticipation for something that they were unwittingly building up to in the past three months.

When Yifan closed the door behind him, Joonmyun saw his hands shaking. He helped Yifan take off his outerwear. "Why are you nervous?" Joonmyun asked incredulously. "It's just us."

"It's also been nine years."

"Since you last had sex?" Joonmyun laughed at the sour expression on Yifan's face. He cupped his face and pulled him down for a soft kiss, walking back towards the bedroom. Yifan slipped his hands beneath Joonmyun's sweater, and Joonmyun gasped at the feeling of his hands wrapping snugly around Joonmyun's waist.

"Do you want this?" Joonmyun had his back pressed against the door, but the hand he kept at the side of Yifan's neck kept him in control. "Do you want me?"

“So, so badly," Yifan whispered. "You have no idea."

"I do, actually." Joonmyun ghosted his fingers over Yifan's crotch, and then his warm palm cupped Yifan's growing bulge. He swallowed Yifan's moan with a searing kiss, and they started walking towards the bed.

Joonmyun got his first taste of being pressed against the mattress that night. Yifan had a knee between his legs and both of his hands pinning Joonmyun down by the wrist. "Did you miss me?"

"I missed this," Joonmyun rolled his hips up, smiling at how Yifan groaned, "missed feeling like this." Yifan leaned forward and pressed a kiss against his collarbone. "I'm just glad you're here again."

"Me too," said Yifan. "I missed you, Joonmyun."

Joonmyun sighed against Yifan's cheek, both of them with greedy hands as they took each other's clothes off. Yifan pulled back as Joonmyun lied naked on the sheets, staring in awe at the man before him. His gaze made Joonmyun self-conscious, but Yifan stopped him before he could cover up or look away. Yifan took his time mapping Joonmyun's body with his lips.

There were moments when they faltered, tripped over themselves, and had a laugh, but it didn't matter. Joonmyun's desires were like flames licking up his body, making him beg for a kiss here or a bruising grip from Yifan's hands there. Yifan was content in giving, giving, giving, making Joonmyun want more and more from him.

Yifan was three fingers deep when Joonmyun cried out and gripped the sheets in pleasure. Yifan kissed his nape and chuckled against his skin with the vibrations rippling through his thrumming body. "Don't tease," Joonmyun whispered, voice hoarse after all the silent screaming.

Joonmyun bit his lip and tried to hide the discomfort that was slowly morphing into pleasure that he couldn't put into words. Yifan slid inside him and started moving, and Joonmyun broke apart, gasping and moaning at each shift of Yifan's hips.

There was really something different about them that night. It was like… going back to the past, except time felt completely irrelevant at that point. It felt like they were on fire, like they were in their own little world for a few seconds. It felt like an intricate dance of movements and heat rising and spreading with each twist of a hand and each sharp thrust. It felt like a song of passion, a song of want, a song that remained beautiful as the record played and time wore it out.

It felt a little bit like love, except neither of them was going to say that out loud.

Yifan pressed an open-mouthed kiss against Joonmyun's chest when he finally came, inhaling Joonmyun's scent and smiling at the uncomfortable peace in the moment. He slid out slowly, and Joonmyun sighed buried his face into the pillow at the empty sensation.

"That was great," Yifan said, smiling brightly at Joonmyun. He placed an arm over Joonmyun's waist and tugged him closer. "Was that the 'something great' you were looking for?"

Joonmyun chuckled, and he kissed Yifan deeply in response. "Maybe."

"What kind of answer is that?" asked Yifan incredulously.

"It means I don't care. It doesn't matter what I thought we could be." Joonmyun rolled out of his arms and stretched his legs off the edge of the bed. "This is what we are now, right? And it's pretty damn great."

Yifan slipped out from beneath the sheets and went behind Joonmyun, giving him a warm hug from behind. "We should take a shower."

We, huh?" Joonmyun giggled at Yifan's warm breath tickling the back of his ear, "I'll think about it."

"Your loss," said Yifan. He walked into the bathroom, and Joonmyun heard the sound of his shower. He thought about it for a second more before walking in and wrapping his arms around Yifan's torso in a tight hug. Yifan laughed, turning around and pressing Joonmyun against the frosted glass of the shower enclosure.

"No more," Joonmyun groaned, but he kept laughing as Yifan kissed his skin again and again and again. "We're not in our twenties anymore."

Yifan smirked. "Oh please, we could go four rounds if we really wanted to back then."

"We could have, if you were there."

Yifan stopped. Joonmyun sighed and he pulled Yifan down to rest their foreheads together. "You know I didn't mean it that way."

"I know," said Yifan. They kissed again, water running down their faces, slick against their lips, growing colder and colder down their bodies. Joonmyun pulled away briefly to remind Yifan why they were here in the first place, and Yifan took that as an opportunity to run suds over Joonmyun's body, with his wandering hands making Joonmyun's eyes darken in warning.

Joonmyun looked around the bedroom for his boxers before collapsing in bed beside Yifan. He pulled Joonmyun closer and let his hands wander and explore Joonmyun's body again. Joonmyun, in turn, kept his hands on Yifan's face, holding him close and teasing him with a kiss.

That moment was so remarkably unremarkable for them. Nothing more happened, nothing escalated, and nothing broke down. They lied in bed and talked and laughed until they slowly drifted to sleep with Yifan's hand on Joonmyun's hip and Joonmyun's hand on Yifan's. The warmth and comfort was enough to lull them into sleep, perfectly content in the moment.

Joonmyun needed to accept reality.

It started with his parents. Then his friends. Then talk shows and random fans on his fan café asking, “Why isn't Joonmyun-oppa in a relationship yet?? If I were one of the girls he came in contact with, I might never let him go!!!!"

His last relationship was with a girl from Jeju. She was a simple office girl, and he was a brat that was too busy running from his issues to really pay attention to her. He spent almost a month on that island walking around and taking her with him. She would laugh and take his hand, not because she particularly wanted to be with him but because she needed a little excitement in her mundane life.

She was good for a chat, good for sex, but it was obvious that Joonmyun would never settle down with her. And that was okay.

He was in a relationship with a guy by the end of the year, like a winter buddy of sorts. He was an accountant, terribly boring and terribly safe, but Joonmyun lived with it for the sex and the free dates. They broke up in less than two months, mostly because they never had anything in common anyway.

Joonmyun saw a pattern in everyone he got into a relationship with within the past five years: all of them were simple and boring, and Joonmyun knew that they were never going to last. His longest and most plausible attempt was with Yixing, and that wasn't going to work out either.

It was as if he didn't want it to last. It was as if he subconsciously sabotaged himself by walking up to the person in the room who was most likely to swoon at his face but least likely to stick around when he started showing his true colors.

The truth was that he was scared. He was scared of being alone.

He accepted it at one point in his life, when youth allowed him to bide his time. He rejected the fear once, told himself that he didn't need anyone to be happy and to live his life. His friends were a safety blanket, but one by one, they started settling down. His high school friends would update their profiles with baby pictures, and Joonmyun would simply smile as his mother showed him another picture of his best friend in third grade and his little girl.

"This could have been you if you stayed with that pretty girl back in 2017," his mom said.

Joonmyun groaned. "How many times do I have to tell you that was just a publicity stunt?"

She made a sound of disappointment. "Still. Could have had two beautiful kids by now."

Joonmyun went back to his phone and ignored how his mother's words rang in his ears for years.

Then there was Minseok and his beautiful wife and his ridiculously happy life. He would leave in the middle of dinner because his wife wanted to go to the hospital to get a feeling checked out, or he'd text him updates complete with ultrasound pictures and cute pictures of them smiling at it.

"Wait. Don't tell us," Baekhyun said as Minseok made a face at his phone. "The wife is calling?"

Yoojung, as you all should know, is in her seventh month. She's done with her prenatal yoga classes, and I'm done drinking for tonight." Minseok smiled and put on his coat. "Bye."

"But you're our favorite," whined Jongdae. "You can't leave me with him!" Jongdae gave Baekhyun an exasperated look.

Baekhyun snorted. "Stop acting like you're not used to my crap."

"That's exactly why I can't be left alone with you," Jongdae said, screaming as Baekhyun tried to wrap him in a headlock. Minseok laughed at their antics and pat Joonmyun's back before leaving the restaurant.

Yoojung gave birth to a healthy baby girl, and two years later, they had another beautiful baby boy. Minseok was glowing with pride every single time he talked about them, about their milestones, and about his life with Yoojung. Joonmyun was awfully happy for him but also awfully jealous of how well his life worked out.

"Do you think I'm going to be alone for the rest of my life?" Joonmyun asked Kyungsoo once. Kyungsoo put down his can of beer, looked at Joonmyun, and let out a hearty laugh, one that made Joonmyun feel worse than ever.

"You can't be serious?" said Kyungsoo. Joonmyun stared at him. "So you are? Well, I don't know. Maybe you're just so hung up on the idea of finding someone right for you."

"What does that even mean?"

Kyungsoo shrugged. "When Minseok first met Yoojung, he told me he couldn't stand her. She was bland and a little rude and Minseok could barely stand working with her. But they got to know each other and they gave each other a chance, and look at them now.

"Maybe the problem is that you keep looking for a perfect match in someone when that's impossible. You meet people and you try something with them but you never really give them a chance for anything more than a fling." Kyungsoo stared at Joonmyun. "You think I don't know about all the guys and girls who were rumored to be with you at some point in time?"

"You're my friend. Of course you know," said Joonmyun. Kyungsoo was… right. He was completely right, and Joonmyun couldn't deny that.

He kept that comment in his mind until Yifan barged right back into his life without even meaning to. As they took slow steps towards each other, Joonmyun knew why none of his relationships ever lasted.

It was because Yifan was the impossible standard that no one could beat. It was because his tumultuous relationship with Yifan was the best he ever had. It was because their love was young and juvenile but it was still love, and nothing would ever match up to it.

As Joonmyun woke up from those dreams, he figured out what was missing. He realized that this couldn't go on for much longer.

“Good morning,” Yifan whispered. His eyes were still closed, but Joonmyun could feel the gentle smile on his lips reaching up and tugging them open. Yifan’s warmth enveloped him as he slid a hand over Joonmyun’s bare waist and pulled him closer.

“Good morning,” said Joonmyun as he closed his eyes again. Losing the intensity of Yifan’s gaze led his attention to the intensity of his overall presence around him: the scent of his skin lingering all over Joonmyun; the twitching of his fingers on the small of Joonmyun’s back as he itched to pull him in closer; the sound of his breathing picking up speed as Joonmyun’s body rose in temperature on each point where they connected.

When Joonmyun opened his eyes again, he was greeted by lips on his temple, lips on his forehead, lips on the bridge of his nose, slowly making their way to claim his lips in a gentle kiss.

Yifan didn’t kiss with the same desperation that he had the night before. He held Joonmyun with a soft touch and let ease and comfort draw their bodies closer and closer together. Joonmyun’s soft moans at his ministrations sparked something within him. Their lazy morning kisses became louder and wetter at the growing need spreading to their extremities. Yifan rolled on top of Joonmyun and braced his hips with his long legs on either side. Joonmyun gripped his arms as he rolled his hips upward, causing a delicious friction that made them stop to release a guttural moan.

Yifan buried his head in the crook of Joonmyun’s neck, inhaling the heady scent of his damp skin. Joonmyun’s hips were twitching with want, but at the sound of Yifan humming something—an OST he sang a few years back—his body sank into the mattress and allowed Yifan to collapse on him fully.

Joonmyun felt the vibrations of Yifan’s voice on his skin, lulling him into a trance. Yifan shifted against him, and Joonmyun waited with bated breath as Yifan lifted himself on one arm to look down at Joonmyun.

"Good morning," Yifan said with a bright smile. Joonmyun pulled him down and rolled them over, straddling his hips snugly. Joonmyun whispered his good mornings against Yifan's skin with kisses, light nips, and a smile that grew as Yifan made a sound of frustration at Joonmyun's languid movements.

They spent that early morning with Yifan pressed hard against the sheets while Joonmyun focused on keeping his dream out of his absolutely perfect reality at the moment. He moaned as Yifan wrapped his long legs around Joonmyun's waist and pulled him closer after their release. Joonmyun pressed a kiss against his chest, just as Yifan did the night before.

They chose to kick off the sheets and lower the thermostat instead of showering. Yifan drifted back to sleep with an arm over Joonmyun's waist and his face buried into his pillow. Joonmyun, however, couldn't get his mind to stop moving.

He needed to leave. This was perfect and too good to be true, and he didn't want that. His chance came through a phone call with his manager.

“Joonmyun! Where are you? I've been outside your apartment for twenty minutes." He paused to think about it. “Actually, I might not want to know. You have a quick scene to film today. Go to the studio as soon as you can." He hung up before Joonmyun could even get a word out.

He sighed, put his phone back on the bedside table, and slowly slid out from beneath Yifan's arm. Joonmyun was able to get his legs off the side of the bed before Yifan woke up. He lazily reached out for Joonmyun's wrist.

"Where are you going?" he murmured. Yifan slowly sat up, sliding behind Joonmyun and hugging his waist. "It's too early for you to go."

"Junghwan called; I have a scene to film today." Joonmyun tried to look for his clothes all sprawled on the floor, but it was difficult to concentrate when Yifan's lips were on his skin again, warm hands guiding him back against Yifan's chest. "I should go."

"You should stay. Just a few more minutes." Yifan was humming that song again, and Joonmyun melted into his arms.

"Yifan, we need to talk," he said with much trepidation, afraid of Yifan tensing up and throwing him out.

He didn't. Yifan sighed, buried his nose into Joonmyun's neck, and laced their fingers together. "Don't fucking be like this. You don't get to spring that line on me after one of the greatest nights of my life—"

"I'm not," Joonmyun said instantly. "This isn't that."

"Good," said Yifan. The relief in his voice was evident. "I would hate you if it were."

"I just—" Joonmyun turned to try and face him. "I like this. It makes me feel like we're twenty again, and the world is in our hands and everything's bound to be perfect. But it didn't work out then." Yifan looked away. "I don't want it to be like that anymore.

"Back then, we had time to waste. We were young and we were stupid and we could excuse our fuck-ups if we wanted to." Joonmyun held his hand tighter. "We're not that young anymore, and I don't want that kind of relationship. It was great then, I'm sure it would still be great now, but I want more."

"What kind of more?" asked Yifan. "Because I can—"

"Don't make those kinds of promises," Joonmyun interrupted. "Don't give me an answer now because I don't want you to say something you don't mean just to make me stay."

He sighed. "I want something just like this, where I can talk to you about shit I'm hiding from myself because I know I can't hide from you. I want to take you to our reunion dinners," Yifan winced, "and I want to reconcile the Yifan I know now to the Yifan we all knew then. I want you to be part of my life in every way you could be.

"I want to settle down. I want to figure out how to make this work, even if you and I have to fly back and forth just to see each other. Or we could decide to stay somewhere— I don't care."

Joonmyun looked down, bit his lip in embarrassment. "I want to finally introduce you to my parents. I want to bring you home, maybe with a baby in tow just to shut them up. And maybe I just want to see you spoil a little girl the way I know you would."

He stared into Yifan's eyes, not looking for answer but looking for an acknowledgement that he understood exactly what Joonmyun was looking for. Joonmyun cupped his cheek. "I want a life with you, but I don't need an answer right now. You should think about it because I already have. I'm sorry I sprung this on you; I just don't want to throw away something as good as us. Until then, we need to take a break."

Yifan turned his head and kissed Joonmyun's palm. "I understand. I'll think about it." His tone sounded like he already had an answer in mind, but Joonmyun wasn't going to have it.

Joonmyun got dressed without lifting his head from the floor. When he made his way to the front door, Yifan was in the kitchen, making a cup of coffee for himself. Before Joonmyun could escape, Yifan walked towards him, held his face in both of his hands, and kissed Joonmyun as if it were their first and their last. He kissed as if nothing else existed at that moment, as if the world revolved around the way Joonmyun tiptoed to chase after his lips, as if Yifan's stomach didn't lurch when they finally had to pull away.

"Goodbye," said Yifan, a little breathless.

"Yeah." Joonmyun smiled at him, a little dazed. "I'll see you soon."

It was easy when they didn't have to see each other as often anymore. Since most of the filming was completed, they only had to meet during conferences and briefings with the publicity team on how they had to promote the film. They could sit across a table and act like absolutely nothing was out of the ordinary, but it was different when they were alone.

Every touch sent shivers down Joonmyun's spine, making him curve into Yifan's body. "Don't," said Joonmyun as Yifan stood closely behind him in the empty restroom. Yifan stepped back, but Joonmyun held him by the wrist and smirked through the mirror.

It was difficult when Yifan only had to drag a finger up Joonmyun's arm for Joonmyun to tangle his fingers in Yifan's hair and pull him down for a sweet kiss. It was difficult because it only lasted a few seconds, but they broke apart with bright smiles and lighthearted laughter bubbling in their chests. It was difficult to stay away from Yifan when it was so natural to be drawn to each other.

"We won't see each other much after this," Joonmyun said. "Filming's pretty much over, and we're down to our last press conference before the premiere." Joonmyun smiled and looked down. "I'll miss this."

"The two of us standing in the company bathroom staring at each other?" Yifan chuckled, grinning as Joonmyun rolled his eyes. "That didn't work out well for us last time."

"It did," said Joonmyun. "Aren't we back here now? Isn't this a far cry from how we were then?"

Yifan kissed his temple. "I love you."

Joonmyun froze. "What?"

Yifan didn't flinch. He didn't look away. He didn't turn around or take it all back. He stared into Joonmyun's eyes through the mirror and held him just a little bit tighter.

It was their unspoken rule. Or was it? Maybe it was Joonmyun's personal fear that kept him from ever doing so. Yifan didn't seem to mind or care. He stopped dancing around Joonmyun when they talked about just letting themselves happen.

Maybe Joonmyun should too.

"I love you too," Joonmyun said. It felt strange on his lips. It felt strange because he meant it with every fiber of his being. He meant it and he wanted Yifan to know so that both of them could stop hiding from the truth.

But it was worth seeing that look on Yifan's face, much softer and warmer than before. Yifan kissed his temple again and chuckled. "I'm glad we got that all cleared up."

"Did you doubt it?" asked Joonmyun.

"Not for a second, no," Yifan said with confidence. Joonmyun looked at him incredulously. "After nine years, you just sort of know."

Yifan furrowed his brows as Joonmyun pulled away and leaned against the counter to look at him directly. "I'm sure about this, Joonmyun. I'm not backing out now or leaving."

"And if something goes wrong?" Joonmyun bowed his head and grimaced. "It almost always does."

Yifan shrugged. "Then we'll make it work. We're adults; it's what we do." Yifan smiled and took Joonmyun's hand. "Trust me."

"I do." Joonmyun wrapped his arms around Yifan's neck, tired and relieved. As he listened to Yifan's heartbeat, Joonmyun thought of how far they've come. He remembered each up and down of their complicated relationship; stability wasn't their best attribute.

But they were happy. Joonmyun was content as he pulled back, kissed Yifan on the cheek, and walked away with a spring in his step and lingering gaze following his movements. Maybe it would work out this time for good or maybe it just wasn't meant to be, but they weren't going to let it fall apart this time. Not anymore. Some things were worth coming back to, over and over again, until it all seemed to come together at the right time in their lives.

Joonmyun held Yifan's hand and squeezed it tightly, tiptoeing to press a kiss against his jaw. "Are you nervous?"

"Why wouldn't I be?" said Yifan, close to walking away. "This was a bad idea—"

Yifan, just do it," Joonmyun said sternly. He let go of Yifan's hand and motioned towards the door. "Your move."

Yifan's heart was pounding as he pushed the doors open and waited as eight pairs of eyes turned to look at him, a myriad of reactions playing out on their faces. He almost faltered, but Joonmyun stood behind him with a hand on the small of his back and a soft smile on his face.

Then he looked behind him and Joonmyun gave him that look. It had the same warmth and the same comfort but with an underlying note that spoke volumes of how happy Joonmyun was to see Yifan right there, with their old friends looking at them with curiosity and fondness and none of the resentment that Yifan feared. Their eyes met and their hands linked, and Yifan looked in front of him again, the ghost of a smile itching at the corners of his lips.

“Hey,” Yifan said, a little nervous, a little hopeful.

a/n: written for the 2016 round of 100xoverfest! congratulations to the mods and to all the participants <3

i struggled so much in writing this fic (i started on 3 drafts before i finally stayed on this one) and it evolved into a fantasy piece about an ideal world where this kind of love really exists. krisho fic has been my creative outlet for 3 (three!!!!!!) years and this ship will forever hold a place in my heart.

(i forgot to add this earlier but this is actually an alternate sequel to please don't say you love me, my krisho canon fic from 2013. if you read that before and saw some references to it in this fic ;)
some things have changed with how i write krisho and their dynamics and i hope that you can see that growth when you read this fic and its (semi-)prequel)

summary is a quote from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
title and cut from "walk away" by LANY

if you have any questions or feedback on the fic, please just leave it in the comments thank u

follow me on twitter!!!

[identity profile] 2016-11-27 02:18 am (UTC)(link)
This?? Is so beautiful??? Wow i love krisho like a lot and this is ????? WoWOWOW im literally incohorent i cant think of anything else besides of how great this is?? I love how you sometimes tell us how it is for joonmyun in the past and i got so emo like hhhh ;--;;;; i ugh idk man i cant think this was so great and the slow build and krisho's relationship development. Their night outs together were definitely my favourite its just so uWu i love it. I just wish i know how exo would react to yifan at the end but i know then there wouldnt be a finish to this :"") i love how supportivw everyone to joonmyun and even eunhye!! GoDD this fic lol im still really emo bc krisho is my 💯💯💯 so thank you so much for writing this fic!!