Genre: AU, fluff, romance, mild angst
Disclaimer: I don't own anything apart from the story. I wish I had YunJae and if I had my way, they'd move to New Zealand so they can be civil-unionised here
Summary: Yunho knows ice very well. He is the youngest team captain in the history of the best professional hockey team in South Korea, bringing his teammates to glory time and time again. But a little something has been missing lately, a spark that everyone has grown to recognise from the young man. His teammates know exactly what’s wrong but he refuses to acknowledge it. Jaejoong is much too young to be this cynical and jaded. At least, that’s what his parents say, but what do they know? They love their only son and only want him to be happy despite not agreeing with his rock star lifestyle. When the 29 year old finds himself in rehab after a sort of accidental overdose, his tearful parents give him an ultimatum. Now he has to figure out what to do with the ball of ice that is his heart…
AN1: Well, I can’t figure out if I’m going to get bricked for this. I was talking to Martanal and telling her I’ll probably get killed for this chapter so we’ll see if I’m still around to write ch7 after this lol :P This chapter actually did not turn out the way I intended, I was typing and it just ran away from me and took on a mind of it’s own so yeah… blame Jaejoong if you wanna blame anyone //hides//
AN2: This banner was done by taigrin
Yunho has managed to catch the cold from hell. He’s not only lost his voice, but he can barely skate a straight line, let alone hold a hockey stick, because he has such a bad hacking cough that it literally makes him lose his balance, and his blocked ears compound the issue with his balance. Perhaps his crowing over his nine points in the last game is coming back and biting him in the ass or something. It’s not his fault that Max had shut the other team out and they had won 12-0. Looking back at the stats of the match, both sides had almost identical shots on goal, so how is it his fault? Why is no one sick but him?
His hands are deep in his pockets, his hood up, the lower half of his face covered in a mask. They have a home game in tomorrow night, and his parents will be there, though his sister, the brat, will be in Tokyo for a concert. Everyone is playing really well and since this is the third day of his cold, he hopes to at least be able to be fit enough to play. His teammates have all left, but he’s still there, having offered to resurface the ice for Coach Kim. It’s the least he can do.
As he walks back into the stadium from parking the Zamboni, he sees a figure skating on the ice. His groan of annoyance causes him to start coughing like mad again as the sound irritates his throat. He wrinkles his nose, watching the man glide effortlessly across the ice. Well, he assumes it’s a man. He is dressed in black from head to toe, his head covered in a beanie and a similar mask covering his face. He doesn’t look like a casual skater, the sharpness of his turns and the way he practically skips across the ice as if skating to a tune only he can hear makes Yunho think that this man is serious.
He doesn’t look familiar at all to him, and when he gets closer, he sees that the man is wearing sunglasses as well. Good grief, surely he should be in an outdoor rink? He’s surely dressed correctly. As he watches, the man sets up for a jump, and he winces internally, expecting a catastrophe, but the man attempts and lands a double axle, making Yunho’s jaw drop open in surprise.
Definitely not a casual skater.
He has no idea why, but he feels compelled to join the man on the ice. He doesn’t have the right skates for skating like that, but hey, as long as he can stay upright it’ll be fine.
But he can’t tie his laces! Jesus this is ridiculous. Yunho stares at his skates in consternation, and then back at the man still skating blithely across the ice, just doing random figure eights, before he suddenly puts in a burst of speed and skates the perimeter of the rink. Yunho waits, watching, holding his breath because it is clear the man is lining up for something. He has a horrid feeling this one isn’t going to go down as well as the double axel.
But the man surprises him, landing his triple toe loop. However, the man is clearly surprised he lands it because he skates straight into the side of the rink, crashing not ten feet from where Yunho is gaping.
Yunho drops his skates, leaping over the barricade to get to the man who is coughing hard, as he sits in a heap on the ice.
“Are you alright?” Yunho tries to croak out, but his voice is barely above a whisper. The man holds up his hand, as if asking Yunho to wait while he coughs.
Jaejoong is completely winded. He really did not expect to nail that jump at all, but had fully committed to it anyway because had he faltered, he’d probably be nursing a broken ankle right now. However, in his shock at making the jump, he had not watched where he was going and thus here he is. There’s some guy who isn’t even wearing skates on the ice, and he has the urge to laugh hysterically at the whole thing. He has no idea why he’s finding it funny but he’s frustrated as hell. He’s had a sore throat for the last day or so, and the concert is in two days. He is the final act for the four hour Saturday night Dome concert which has a rather early start time of 5pm. He has changed the performance multiple times now, and he knows his band is ready to strangle him, but what can he do? His voice is not cooperating. Perhaps he really should go with the stripped back routine. He is on hiatus after all.
What’s truly annoying about the song choices is that they are actually not allowed to sing their own songs. This concert isn’t about promoting the artists, it’s about raising money. He has no idea how that even makes sense but clearly it makes sense to whoever is organising the concert so he’ll go with it. And the worst part is that for one of his songs, he doesn’t even have a choice! There’s an online poll that closes that night where fans are allowed to choose the song the artists sing. Jaejoong had been asked to provide a list of five songs which he has, and the song that is currently winning is one he’s not sure he’ll be able to pull off if his voice doesn’t cooperate.
And then today, out of the blue, his father suggests he go skating. Skating in the middle of the afternoon? He usually goes later at night because there’s no one in the stadium, but he figures maybe his parents want some alone time and he has been cooped up indoors so he takes his skates and leaves without complaint.
He’s been chatting with Yunho nightly as usual. No more phone calls, but the flirting over email is definitely intensifying. He is just a tad upset though, because the younger man let slip last night that he’s been sick for a bit and all Jaejoong wants is to make him ginger chicken broth and cuddle him back to health.
Now, he had to take a step back then.
After they’d said their goodnights, Jaejoong had spent a good few hours pondering their relationship. They’ve been talking for over two weeks now, clocking up more time than he has ever clocked with anyone apart from his parents, he’s sure. He finds himself looking forward to their chats and it takes a real effort for him not to email or text the man during the day, knowing that Yunho doesn’t need or want that type of person if his profile is anything to go by. Heck, he’s exactly the same way. In fact, the amount of time they’re spending “together” would be considered stifling by his standards.
But for Jaejoong, because it’s Yunho, it’s ok.
They haven’t exchanged anymore photos, although he has found one that made him crack up. He had been about to text it to Yunho when his father had come home and “suggested” he go skating. Perhaps later then.
He knows Yunho is at practice, even though he’d expressed some worry about him participating. It was a fleeting comment though, and not naggy, and he feels a little proud of himself for that.
So now here he is, sitting on the cold ice, trying to stop coughing while this man in a mask who could be some crazy stalker for all he knows just stares down at him.
He takes the gloved hand offered to him, allowing the tall man to pull him up. And the man is indeed tall. Jaejoong is by no means short, but this man is taller than him and he’s on skates! He lets his eyes run down the length of the man’s body, a twinge of annoyance at not really being able to discern much apart from his height. But then who is he to complain, he’s bundled right up to the gills himself.
“Are you alright?” Yunho tries again, and the man leans in closer as if trying to hear him. Yunho takes a deep breath just then, and starts to choke. He loses his balance, and this time he falls, pulling the other man down on top of him. He can barely see straight, he’s coughing so hard. What sets him off though is the man currently sprawled on him. He takes a gulp of air but all he gets is a noseful of Missha’s new fragrance for men and his head spins.
Jaejoong is annoyed and concerned. Annoyed at being pulled down, and concerned because the man sounds like he’s about to cough his lungs out. He is damn well glad the other man is wearing a mask because he really doesn’t need to get sicker than he already is. He has found out one thing though.
The man is very very very hard under all those layers.
Hard as in muscular, not anything dodgy.
“Are you alright?” he asks back, having heard the man’s hoarse whisper earlier. He pulls himself off, sitting by his side. He wants to thump him on the back to help, but the man is lying on the ice, gasping for air and Jaejoong is helpless. His coughing doesn’t seem to be getting any better though, and well, illness aside, he really is starting to worry.
He tries to push the immovable object that is the rather large man, pulling off the hood of his hoodie, and thumping him on the back.
Yunho feels himself being manhandled, and he lets the man do it because he is honestly completely out of air. He grapples at the mask over his face, pulling it off before sucking in lungfuls of sweet cold air. Very cold air that sends him off on another coughing fit. At this rate, he really won’t be able to play.
Jaejoong can see that the man has ripped off his mask, and the way he is shaking with every cough, makes him feel like coughing in sympathy somehow. He pats the man as comfortingly as he can manage through all their layers, feeling useless. He knows first aid, and he supposes he can probably give mouth to mouth if necessary, germs bedamned. The poor guy really sounds like he’s about to lose a lung.
And it is about that time when Yunho rolls up into a sitting position, still hunched over as he coughs. He can feel the man rubbing his back soothingly, and he feels an ache in his chest, because the man smells like he imagines Jaejoong to smell like, and after their conversation last night when the older man had admitted to wanting to look after him, he feels a pang. For the first real time since they’ve started talking, he really wants Jaejoong by his side.
He finally manages to get his coughing under control, taking shallow breaths and exhaling fully to empty his lungs. He wipes away at the tears that have seeped out from his horrific coughing fit, and he turns to face the man, to thank him.
Jaejoong is still rubbing the man’s back when he turns, and this time it is he who chokes.
No, it can’t be.
But the height, the fact that this man is sick.
That fucking mole. Come on how many fucking men with that mouth are going to have a mole JUST RIGHT THERE.
Jaejoong’s brain freezes as he backs away in shock, literally scraping his ass over the ice as the gorgeous young man stares at him, his hair all tousled, the fringe plastered to his forehead as his coughing fit had made him sweat from exertion. His cheeks red from the cold and probably from coughing almost to death. And those beautiful almond eyes, a sheen of tears in them that he blinks away as they stare at each other.
Yunho is beautiful.
And Jaejoong runs.
He finds his feet, and turns around and practically runs off the ice.
Leaving a very bewildered Yunho with a wet ass from sitting on the ice for so long, staring after him.
Jaejoong is on the plane to Tokyo. He had gone straight home, blown past his confused parents, packed his bags, kissed them goodbye and left. He doesn’t care that he isn’t meant to be there till tomorrow. They can deal with it. He just wants to get as far away from South Korea as possible.
His heart is still racing, his palms damp, but instead of a smile that graces his lips whenever he thinks of Yunho, he is full on pouting instead. His face is still hidden behind a mask, so no one can see it, but he’s just completely floored.
Just…what the hell was that? What were the chances of Yunho living in the same city as him? Seriously? What are the chances of that? He’s tempted to ask Yunho to calculate the probability for him because just the thought of the maths alone that is involved in that is quite alarming and makes his head hurt.
But seriously, what the fuck was that?
Jaejoong exhales, feeling his warm breath bouncing off the mask and back onto his cheeks and he pulls his mask off. He wonders if Yunho would have recognised him had he not been wearing the mask. The more he thinks about it, the more he wants to find out.
But how does he explain to Yunho that he ran?
How does he ask Yunho why he was there on the ice in the first place? Of all the places in the world to be, why there?
So many questions, and no answers. But in all honestly, Jaejoong admits to himself that had he wanted those answers, he would have stayed. He would not have run.
Why did he run?
Growling under his breath, Jaejoong waves a passing flight attendant to bring him some alcohol. He really doesn’t want to think about it. He has a feeling that he might not like what he finds should he delve too deeply into the whole thing, or he might like it just a tad too much.
And he isn’t prepared for either scenario.
No one is surprised when an inebriated Hero Jaejoong arrives in Japan, complete with his vile temper and sporadic bursts of curse words directed at whomever happens to cross his line of fire at the time.
Yunho is confused, and a little worried. He hasn’t heard from Jaejoong since the night before last, and he’s even tried to call the man that morning but his phone had gone straight to voicemail. He did say he had to leave the country for work that weekend, but Yunho had assumed his number would remain the same. Perhaps not then.
He is at about 70% fitness right now. He gets winded much quicker than usual, but during the final practice session that morning, he had managed to score five out of ten in the breakaway drill with Max, more than any of the other players combined. Coach Kim is still a little hesitant to place him in the line up, but Yunho had convinced him otherwise. His parents are watching the game, and he wants to make them proud.
He gazes at his phone again, wondering if he should try again when Changmin comes in, already suited up like him, and sits next to him on the bench.
Yunho shrugs, trying not to show how upset he is.
Changmin sits silently next to him. He knows Hero Jaejoong had arrived in Japan earlier than scheduled yesterday evening, and there are even paparazzi shots of the red-eyed man scowling at everything and everyone as he is escorted out of the airport, the lower half of his face in a mask. No doubt, his mouth would have been turned down in an unhappy sneer. News agencies had intimated that the rockstar had caused a bit of a ruckus on the flight, and had almost been restrained, and in all honesty, Changmin really doesn’t put it past the man.
What he wants to know though, is what had happened to cause this. Yunho had been very cheerful yesterday morning but this morning, it’s as if someone else had come and replaced his captain, turning the tall young man into a mere shell. He is exceedingly annoyed that Jaejoong has managed to get under Yunho’s skin that quickly, but he is also somewhat happy for the man. While he still doesn’t quite trust Jaejoong, the fact that he is Coach Kim’s son counts for something. He has a feeling the man’s rockstar persona is more of a show than anything else, but then again, who knows? Because clearly nobody seems to.
The rest of the team comes in along with Coach Kim who also looks somewhat like Yunho. Changmin finds it really strange that their coach has managed to remain unaffected by anything Hero Jaejoong does in the past, able to maintain his stoic persona in face of anything. Of course, now that he knows that Hero is his son, he is paying more attention to his coach’s behaviour.
Perhaps he had always been a little grim after one of Hero Jaejoong’s drunken escapades.
Perhaps he had always been a little tired about the eyes after stories of Hero’s wild nights hit the media.
Perhaps he had always been extra harsh on all of them after news of altercations between his son and his sasaengs and paparazzi become public knowledge.
But no one had ever thought to link the coincidences. Not till now anyway.
Changmin is silent as Coach Kim gives them the usual pep talk before a match. He can see his other teammates looking back and forth between their coach who is injecting his negative energy into real fighting talk, and their team captain who is listening attentively. Anyone who doesn’t know Yunho will think he is just acting normal, but Changmin can see the muscle in his jaw tick, which means he is frustrated or angry.
Junsu can see that Yunho is staring at their coach, but his eyes are not focused.
Han Geng can see their captain’s hand flexing on the handle of his hockey stick, translating into nervousness, which he never is before a match no matter how big.
Kangin and Yoochun can both see the way he keeps swallowing hard, as if to clear a lump in his throat, that their young captain is still not a hundred percent fit.
Everyone is somewhat subdued, even though this home game is important. They should be more enthusiastic, but knowing what is going on with Hero Jaejoong and how both their coach and captain are affected is affecting them too. They huddle as usual, and Yunho’s words are more fiery than he has behaved. He speaks of love for the game, for the fans, and for their family. And how they are not just playing for themselves, but for the country. They are the only South Korean team in this league, and thus the pride of the nation lies on their shoulders.
The five older men listen to his passionate speech with two ears. The ear of a player listening to his captain, and the ear of an older brother, listening to their baby brother trying to work through his confusion over love.
As they pile their hands together, all six believe that they can win this.
And win they did.
“SEVEN FUCKING NIL!” Kangin hoots, as his teammates knock their beer bottles together. “We’re back baby! Back in business. Everyone better watch the fuck out cos we’re so hot even hell won’t be able to handle us.”
Their coach had allowed them a rare night out, and they are all making the most of it. Coach Kim had begged off, saying he needs to call his family, but had sent them out with his blessings, and the warning that they’d better be able to skate a straight line in practice tomorrow afternoon, otherwise this will be their last night out till the season ends.
They are in a rather noisy Western sports bar, Changmin choosing the strange venue, since he had shut the other team out so completely. It wasn’t for the lack of trying though. The shots on goal from both teams had been even, but they didn’t have U-Know Yunho on their team. The man had scored a hat trick, and Micky and Xiah two a piece.
The other team’s defence had all but given up by the third period. Yunho was so fast, he was impossible to catch. They had tried double teaming him, but the resultant scuffle from his angry teammates had left Kangin in the sin bin for a five minute penalty, and the Tohoku Free Blades defencemen with bruised jaws. One of them had to be subbed out, thanks to his broken nose and possible fractured jaw. Anyang Halla had played like their lives depended on the game, and the result had been amazing for the home crowd.
The venue had been between Changmin and Yunho, but the team captain had been more than happy to allow his goaltender to pick since his parents had offered to pick up their bar tab that night. Mr and Mrs Jung were very vocal in their pride, and the team captain basks in that, even as his mind wanders off back to his phone. He had checked his DreamDate inbox and his phone. He had even gotten Junsu to call, and text him just to check if his phone is working. There’s definitely nothing wrong with it. This is the first time Jae has “failed” him in over two weeks, and for some reason, Yunho cannot seem to deal with the perceived defection.
But really, he believes that Jae is sick or unable to contact him somehow, not that he has chosen not to contact him. His mind just refuses to entertain that possibility. He hasn’t done anything wrong that he can recall, and neither has Jae. Their last few emails had been rather…loving.
I’ll be alright. I’ve played in worse conditions. Don’t worry! How’s your throat? I’ve been told I make a kick-ass lemon honey and ginger drink and I kinda wish I could make it for you now. Have you watched Charlie and the Chocolate Factory? You would think they would have invented a way of beaming food through the television or something by now, huh?
You are such a dork! Trust you to bring up a children’s movie to highlight your point. But I get the sentiment behind it and I appreciate it. I can do one better for you and make my mother’s ginger chicken broth. It’s so good you might actually want to stay sick :D
Will you look after me if I’m sick? *3*
Silly, man! I can’t believe you even need to ask. Though to be honest, if I had my way, I’d chain you to the bed, and stand guard at the door and your coach would have to get through me to get to you and trust me, no one will be getting to you.
Why am I imagining shackles? Like, actual chains.
You wouldn’t be far off :P
Kinky Jae is kinky.
Did I ever give you the impression that I was anything else? ;-)
You’re so bad. I can’t speak and neither can you and now I’m just sitting here remembering all your piercings and my brain just melted……………
LOL! Go to bed :P I’d be happier knowing you’re at least well rested. Take it easy for practice tomorrow :-) *cuddles*
That was the last email from Jae, and Yunho had tacked on a silent I love you at the end of that message. It wasn’t typed by the man, but he imagines he can feel it. He sighs, taking one last look at his phone, and then placing it face down on the table.
As they drink and chat, a familiar song suddenly starts playing. Yunho doesn’t notice it at first since he is well on his way to getting drunk, but his teammates do, and they all start hooting, attracting the attention of most of the people in the room as they are rather hard to miss, not to mention some of the few Asians in the bar.
Changmin immediately stands, pointing to Yunho and offering him up to the small stage. The DJ playing the music immediately agrees, and the crowd starts to call for him.
“What the fuck?”
“Come on! You can sing and you sure as fuck can dance. Go work your magic.”
“But I don’t want to!”
“Awww, come on.” Yoochun coaxes, his eyes a little bleary from the amount of alcohol is has consumed, but he is still very cognizant.
The crowd is already starting to cheer and hoot because of the song, and because most have finally managed to catch sight of exactly who is supposed to go up on stage. Quite a few of them recognise him from the earlier game, and the shouts and hollers increase. Those that don’t recognise are still vocal because they can appreciate the breadth of his shoulders in the fitted leather jacket, and the length of his body. Not to mention the devastating smirk. His face is small, but oh so very handsome, and half the crowd already consider themselves in love. None have dared to approach him because he is surrounded, but perhaps he will be more accessible on stage.
Yunho groans as his teammates tease and poke at him. He has to bat away Yoochun’s and Junsu’s hands that are unbuttoning his shirt, but they manage to do it anyway, exposing the white wifebeater underneath. Changmin tosses him his baseball cap and Yunho finds his confidence in the prop. He is really buzzed from the alcohol, having consumed much more than he normally would, and his teammates have only encouraged it. The music keeps playing, and the crowd has apparently found out his name because they are chanting it.
U-Know Yunho! U-Know Yunho! U-Know Yunho!
And really, what man can resist a siren call like that? He finally stands with a smirk, making his way to the stage.
The crowd parts to let him through, but not by much. He can feel his arms being tugged, and his butt even gets pinched along the way, and he briefly wonders about the life of an idol, getting groped wherever they go. He’s read stories about how bad it gets, a recent one he remembers reading happened to be about Hero Jaejoong several months ago. The rockstar had completely lost it at some girl who had shoved a letter down the back of his hoodie, managing to cut him with it. It’s probably not the same, but he does feel a tad violated.
He reaches the stage just before the chorus, turning, cap in his hand and he starts to dance utterly unselfconsciously to the music. He has consumed more than enough alcohol to perform for the crowd. Heck, Junsu and him used to fool around with street hip hop teams when they were both rookies, and he definitely knows how to move his body.
He bends his head, mouth twisted in the wickedest smirk yet as he looks up slowly, lifting his wifebeater up as his hips roll suggestively to the sexy song, body waving and air fucking. The crowd is deafening and Yunho notices Changmin filming him with what looks like his own phone. He continues to move, but he gives the man the single finger salute as he does.
Jaejoong is drunk. Very very drunk. So drunk that he’s managed to find himself with two people in his bed in his hotel suite. He isn’t sure how they’ve managed to get there, but he vaguely recalls his Japanese manager assuring him that they’ve signed NDAs.
What the fuck?
Is he a fucking whore and his manager a pimp?
He struggles with the girl trying to get his pants off. She is giggling, and he is finding the sound extremely grating. He vaguely realises he’s told her to shut up, but she seems hellbent on ignoring him. There is also a man in the room, stretched out next to him and trying to kiss him. He keeps shifting his head away, but the unknown man keeps chasing him. Drunk or not, Jaejoong doesn’t want this, and in a show of strength, he finally manages to shove both the man and the woman off him.
They tumble off the bed in a heap, the woman blinking confusedly at him, her tits already hanging out, while the man stands, anger colouring his face. He makes a grab for Jaejoong, yanking his leg, but the singer is having none of it, lashing out with his foot and hitting the man squarely in the gut. This seems to infuriate the man who proceeds to try and drag the unwilling and tipsy singer off the bed, ripping his shirt off him.
The pain from having his clothes torn from him seems to shake Jaejoong back into the reality of the situation. As he stares at the man, he vaguely wonders exactly how many times he’s actually been so fucked up drunk that whoever he’s slept with had been essentially raping him. He also wonders if management purposefully keep him drunk to make him more manageable. He definitely wouldn’t put it past those bottom-feeders.
The man makes to grab him, but this time Jaejoong is ready for him. His training in martial arts is a little known fact, and clearly this oaf has no clue when he finds himself flat on his back with the heel of Jaejoong’s thousand dollar motorcycle boots lodged firmly against his throat.
He bends over, putting pressure on it, unaffected by the man’s wide pain-filled eyes and scrabbling hands. He blinks slowly, trying to clear the alcoholic haze from his vision.
As he does so, a vision in black and green dances across the forefront of his mind. Black jeans and a dark forest green parka, with a furry hood, hiding a small handsome face with the most beautiful mouth he has ever seen.
Jaejoong shakes his head, and the image disappears, showing instead his reality. A half naked Japanese man now practically turning blue and a screaming bitch next to him, slapping at his arms and back in an attempt to free the man.
He takes no notice of her as he bends closer to the man, his voice a cruel sneer.
“I can crush your trachea just like that.” He hisses, increasing the pressure of his foot to emphasise his point. “But I won’t because you’re not worth the fucking shit on the heel of my boot.”
He steps off, and the man turns over, coughing and gasping and choking, and Jaejoong is once again transported to yesterday afternoon. That only makes him angrier as he grabs the man by the collar of his shirt, yanking the woman by whatever’s left of the halter top she has on, dragging both of them to the door of his suite. He doesn’t give a rat’s ass that they’re both half naked as he throws them out into the hallway, slamming the door behind them.
He tugs at his clothes as he walks through his suite, anger practically oozing from every pore. He turns his phone on, ignoring all the beeps of missed calls and messages as he rings the head of the management company in Japan. He doesn’t give a fuck that it’s after midnight. He is furious.
His voice is like ice as he leaves a message on the answer machine.
“I want Fuku fired. He is a constipated cock sucking asshole, and if I see him within a 30 foot radius of me, I will beat his fucking face in, do you understand? I don’t need a fucking babysitter for a fucking charity concert you incompetent jack ass. Don’t bother replacing him. I can manage myself.” He pauses, and adds as an afterthought, “Oh yeah, feel free to try to haul me up on my use of language, and you’ll find me kicking your ass for all the fucks I will never give the likes of you.”
He hangs up and hurls the phone at the headboard of the bed which is thankfully made of leather, as the phone bounces off it harmlessly enough. He stalks to the bathroom, stripping and binning every single article of clothing on his body. He takes a long shower, washing away as much of the filth as he can. He feels tainted, dirty, and utterly disgusting. No matter how long he showers, he will never be able to get rid of that foulness. He is too deep in it. Steeped too long that the stains are imprinted onto his very being. He cannot escape it.
He is Hero Jaejoong.
Masquerading as Kim Jaejoong.
Who the fuck is he trying to fool?
The name flits into his mind unbidden, and the howl of pain that leaves his lips as he sinks to the floor of the marble bathroom is animalistic. He has no idea how long he sits there in the warm water, shaking as he drowns the alcohol out of his system. As he sobers up slowly, the reality of his situation all but cripples him.
He cannot do this.
He is not strong enough for this.
He cannot bear the thought of Yunho getting hurt and he knows he will get hurt.
It is inevitable.
He hurts, his parents hurt so Yunho will most definitely hurt.
But what can he do?
He sits up, leaning against the wall of the large walk in shower, water cascading over his head as he remembers the young man trying to help him on the ice. The horrid coughing fit, and how sorry he felt for him as he tried to soothe him the best he could, without even knowing that was Yunho.
And then when he saw that mouth, that mole, and the glimpse of that unmistakable jawline, the way their eyes meet. He is really glad he’d been wearing sunglasses. Yunho’s wet eyes makes his heart ache in a way that it has never ached before. It hurts.
Is this love?
Jaejoong’s eyes widen as the thought strays across his consciousness, and he stands up in a shocked hurry, slamming straight into the opposite wall as his head swims painfully from getting up too quickly. But his body is tired, his heart aching, and his mind a throbbing jumble of god only knows what, not to mention the alcohol still in his system, and Jaejoong crashes back to the floor, passing out on the bathroom tiles.
Yunho stares at his phone. His head hurts, and he feels numb. He hates it. He’s annoyed that his teammates had poured so much alcohol down his throat, but then again, he let them. He’s never been the escaping type, preferring to confront issues and deal with them when they come.
But this whole thing with Jae is throwing him for a loop. Their relationship is an online one. How easy is it for someone to just disappear from your life because the only contact you have is not a physical one? Not an actual tangible one? Jae could have died, and he would never know. He could be sick in a hospital right now, and no one, absolutely no one would think to call him.
And why would they? He’s just some almost faceless, almost nameless stranger from the internet. He has no rights over Jae no matter how much they talk, and what their profiles say about them dating. He’s not even sure whether he can call the man his boyfriend. They’re dating, but how real is it?
The feelings are real, the conversations are real, he means every word he says. He misses the man so much it’s almost laughable. He doesn’t even know what he does. The way he keeps hedging about his occupation is making his thoughts run a little wild, and he’s even entertained the possibility that Jae is some high class escort!
That’s how bad it’s gotten.
But yet, he doesn’t want to push the man because he has this deep-rooted feeling that Jae is really not the type of person to trust easily, and Yunho will not betray that trust. He is willing to wait, if Jae is willing to still share whatever part of him that he can. And besides, how important is an occupation anyway?
Not to him. Not in the grand scheme of things. His family is rich, but his parents are not snobs. They were not born rich, and thus, still retain that basic humility that makes them decent human beings. Their social circle is rife with poseurs and posturing assholes, and Yunho feels bad for thinking about his acquaintances that way, but that’s the truth. If Jae does turn out to be some sort of high class hooker, than there will be trouble.
But other than that, even a toilet cleaner would be welcomed with open arms by his parents as long as he is happy. The fact that Jae has no idea who he is will work out for them in this matter, since it’s a little hard to be a gold digger if you have no idea there’s a gold mine in the first place.
Perhaps the man does have the right idea then. Being encumbered by details such as occupations and backgrounds distracts from the more important things.
He knows Jae likes him. He is certain of this.
Yunho sighs, pulling the covers up to his chin, feeling oddly lonely. He wishes he’d taken up his teammates’ offer of hanging out, but it’s almost 2am and call him an old fuddy duddy, but he really just wanted to go home.
He picks up his silent phone, staring at the blank screen and the lack of messages.
He starts a new message, figuring if Jae has really disappeared, then he has nothing to lose.
I miss you…
Jaejoong wakes up shaking and shivering. The water is still warm, but he’s so waterlogged and wrinkly that it has ceased to matter. He tries to shake his head to clear the cobwebs, but the movement brings a wealth of pain. He moves gingerly, turning the water off, and the silence in the large bathroom is deafening. He can’t make his legs work, as he’s spent too long with them folded up oddly underneath him.
He feels pathetic.
Hero Jaejoong, fucking rockstar, can’t even get up off the bathroom floor.
He chuckles mirthlessly to himself. How many times has he woken up on the bathroom floor with puke around him? At least this is a slight improvement on that.
He drags himself along the marble floor, ignoring the ache in his back and the friction against his thighs. He doesn’t bother with a towel, simply focusing on getting to the bed.
It takes him a while. Much longer than he cares to think about, before he is finally in the warmth of his bed. As he lays his sodden head on the pillow, he catches sight of his phone. He picks it up, fumbling with the keypad, and almost locks himself out of his own phone as he tries to swipe his passcode in with shaky hands and trembling fingers.
There are so many messages, but he only reads the ones from one name, and he starts backwards.
9:38pm - I’m feeling much better today! I think I’ll be able to play well enough tomorrow. How are you feeling? Wanna chat online?
11:07pm - Ok so you’re not online. I sent you a couple of rather rambly emails. Please ignore because I’m doped up on cold medication and I’m sure it’s messing with my head.
11:35pm - Oh, and I met someone today who made me think of you because he smells the way I imagine you’d smell…that is if you weren’t messing with me about smelling like Missha :P Night, Jae.
Jaejoong has to bite hard on his lip to stifle the broken sound threatening to escape him. Yunho…
He grinds his teeth, taking a deep breath as he moves on to the next message.
10:49am - Hmmm… are you ok? Last night is the first night we haven’t spoken and it feels a little weird. I just tried to call but it went to voicemail. Guess you’re already overseas then?
2:30pm - I’ve been given the all clear to play today. Hope you’re feeling better.
11:57pm - This isn’t Yunho.
Jaejoong’s brow furrows instantly, unaware that his grip has tightened on the phone.
11:58pm - I’m not sure what’s happened between you two, but we feel responsible since we’re the ones who signed him up to that dating website. He’ll probably kill us for meddling, but we thought perhaps you should know what he looks like without his sunglasses. And btw, we poured a lot of alcohol into him for this so if you want to blame anyone, blame us.
Jaejoong’s jaw is clenched as he stares at his phone. Yunho’s teammates have gotten a hold of his phone. He is suddenly glad they’ve never sexted. Glad and mildly regretful if he’s being honest. He clicks open the next message.
12:05am - Enjoy ;-)
There is a tiny video next to the message, and Jaejoong clicks on it.
Loud music assaults his ear, and he winces, turning down the volume immediately. The crowd he can see is very loud too. The room is not actually dim so he can see the stage well enough. He can hear people talking in the background.
How the fuck do you zoom this thing? Ugh, why must he have such a fancy phone? Ah, yes, ok got it.
The camera suddenly zooms onto a person onstage, and Jaejoong’s jaw drops. He will recognise that mouth anywhere. However what unhinges it completely is what Yunho is doing on that stage.
My saddle’s…waiting…come and, jump on it.
“Oh my god.”
Jaejoong watches mesmerised, as Yunho moves with the R&B song. He knows this song, but he’s only heard the rock cover of it by Far. He had no idea Yunho could dance. Somehow it’s never come up before, perhaps because he himself looks like a flailing chicken when he dances, wincing as he remembers his pop idol days. Well, no, but he certainly feels like a flailing chicken. He cannot place his style very well since it seems to be a mixture of a few things, but the control…the control he has of his body is amazing.
And speaking of his body, good fucking lord his body. The man clearly knows what to do with that body. His movements are crisp, yet sinuous, and somehow it all fucking works. Jaejoong doesn’t realise how close he has the screen to his face, wanting to drink in everything he can see.
His jaw drops as Yunho smirks towards the audience, lifting up his wifebeater to show off the six pack underneath. And then…
The moan that leaves his throat is guttural and needy and full of want. Oh dear god.
And to make things worse, or better, depending on how one looks at it, Yunho looks dead on to the camera, smiling widely as he lets go of his wifebeater, and shows whoever is taking the video the middle finger.
And then his growl of disbelief when the video cuts off.
His cock is full and hard, and Jaejoong shifts uncomfortably under the covers.
He is torn.
He wants Yunho.
There’s no point denying it. This whole online dating business is making him flat out crazy. How the hell did he end up with possibly the most attractive man he has ever seen in his life, and they’re cockblocked by the method of their meeting.
He replays the 35 second video again, and is annoyed and frustrated all over again when it cuts off. However, this time, he stares at Yunho’s face, and there is no mistaking it. The man from yesterday afternoon is his Jung Yunho.
His Jung Yunho.
Jaejoong laughs derisively, the sound hollow in the large bedroom of his expensive hotel suite.
Yunho isn’t his no matter how much he wants him to be. He cannot have the man because of who he is. That sweet dorky young man who also happens to be a walking sex god apparently, doesn’t need to be pulled into the black hole that is his existence as Hero Jaejoong.
Jaejoong wants to delete that message, but somehow he cannot bring himself to.
There’s one last message from Yunho, or at least, Yunho’s phone. His eyelids flutter as he is suddenly hit by a wave of exhaustion, both physically and emotionally. And thus, his defences are down as he reads the final message.
1:47am - I miss you…
Jaejoong stares at the three words. Three words that all but break his heart. He remembers what his night had just been like, and how he’d passed out drunk in his room the previous night after imbibing overmuch on the plane and also off it.
He remembers the shy young man who had stuttered so adorably on the phone when he realised it was him calling.
He remembers the dirty words that spill forth from his lips after he had sung to him, to relax him.
He remembers the sweet young man trying to help him back onto his feet on the ice.
He remembers the zest for life that practically bursts from each word he types.
He remembers how he ran.
He remembers why he ran.
He remembers where he is.
He remembers what he is.
He remembers who he is.
And he remembers exactly when he decides it doesn’t fucking matter.
Jaejoong is unaware that silent tears have leaked out of his eyes, as he types into his phone. He’s been accused of being selfish, self-centred, and self-absorbed pretty much since he became Hero Jaejoong. And for the first time, he will actually truly be selfish.
I miss you too…
AN1: Good grief… btw that part of the song where Jae moans, well it’s basically this move here http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=IVMKQP0K3a0#t=112s with this song. If the video doesn’t immediately play where it should, skip to 1:54 of the song. And uh, ignore the dude and imagine Yunho doing it with a smirk.
AN2: I actually originally had Yunho singing the rock version of that song, and then decided against it… I’d already written it out too because it was meant to be in ch5, but then it really makes more sense for Yunho to be dancing than singing so yeah…
AN3: I want to cry for some reason TT__________TT I both love and hate when my characters (GLARING AT MY JAEJOONG MUSE RIGHT NOW) decides to just tell me to fuck off and they go ahead with whatever it is they want. I got completely railroaded…