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Passing By

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Even though I've hurt all I could


"Are you breaking up with me, already?" A girl on the verge of crying barely spoke out without sobbing. She tried hard to look deep into the eyes of the guy in front of her. Just a bit of feelings. Just a bit of sympathy. Just a bit she could hang onto. But to no avail, the guy didn't have any for her. All she can see was his dark orbs telling her to let him go.

Her head hung low with tears streaming down her cheeks. It hurts. So much that she couldn't move away.

The guy removed a ring out of his ring finger, their couple ring, perhaps. The couple ring they got for their first monthsary. As the metal grazed through the skin of his finger, her hopes diminished little by little. Was it over? He gently held her hand to return the ring on her palm. The girl felt little warmth from his hand but his touch was soon gone as he quietly walked away from her crying figure, not looking back even once.

How much more do I have to hurt in order to be fine?


He walked aimlessly, and found himself staring at a certain person who was walking towards him. Towards his direction, rather. His feet stopped on their own, his eyes fixed on the nearing smaller figure.

The shaking sound of the wind shakes up my heart, and passes by.

"Lee Daehwi." He murmured as the smaller guy walked passed him, not once making eye contact with him.

The said Daehwi, however, didn't stop nor turn his head over. He just continued walking. Like no one called him just now.

"As if it's nothing, you just pass me by." He murmured even lower, to himself.

~~~~~~~~~~~

"They broke up, already. Just yesterday, I think?"

News of their break up spread like a wildfire. Almost everyone is talking about it. And the main question is,

Who will he date next?

"Jinyoung!" A classmate called out to him, to which he responded with a "Hey" in return.

"Just how many more are you going to date and dump?" He jokingly asked to him.

"Shut up." Jinyoung replied, and his classmate just chuckled at his answer. Weird.

"Can someone help Daehwi go to the infirmary? He sprained his ankle, and I can't really lift him up, either." A girl at the end of the hallway shouted, near the stairs.

Jinyoung dashed at the moment Daehwi was mentioned. He didn't mind if he looked stupid, he checked on the younger boy, and asked, "Are you okay?", full of worry in his voice. He didn't let Daehwi speak though. Instead, he just faced his back towards the boy, and asked him to hop on.

Daehwi had no choice but to accept his offer. Not like someone else is willing to assist him.

The whole walk was awkward, but Jinyoung felt relieved that Daehwi accepted his offer of help. He's not assuming they're fine, but maybe there's even just a slight improvement?

"Stop giggling." The younger boy said, as he heard soft giggles from Jinyoung.

"But this is a first, for me, I think." Jinyoung replied. Although he couldn’t see, Daehwi's eyebrows furrowed at what he heard.

"First what?" The younger asked.

"First time we've walked the same way together, again." Jinyoung answered, his words trying to find its way to Daehwi's feelings.

With his answer, Daehwi's jaw tightened. He remembered the pain. He remembered the sight he tried hard to forget. He remembered Bae Jinyoung. Why was Jinyoung doing this to him?

"Daehwi-yah! Let's go home together."

"Daehwi-yah! Do you need help?"

"Have you eaten, what do you want?"

"I have coupons for a cafe. Are you free?"

"Let's watch a movie, Daehwi-yah!"

Daehwi has tried every way possible to reject every way Jinyoung finds to get close to him, again. He turned him down until Jinyoung didn't ask him out, anymore. And honestly, Daehwi felt a little disappointed for he had given up so early. Compared to what he had done to him.

But Daehwi felt that he's better now than before. Sure, he was hurt, but maybe it was just something bound to happen, so he just decided to ignore that moment, and if possible, ignore him, too. Jinyoung, that is.

Jinyoung opened the door, and let go of Daehwi on the nearby bed.

"What happened, by the way?" Jinyoung asked the smaller boy, pertaining to his sprain, as his eyes roamed around due to the awkward atmosphere inside the room. They have been awkward for a long time, honestly. Too long that some of the precious memories were buried at the back of their minds. Too long that they didn't remember how each other's laughs sounded like. Too long that even the basic things were forgotten. One didn't want to dig them up. But the other doesn't want to forget everything. Now now, not ever.

"Shouldn't I ask you that?" Daehwi asked back, seriously, and with another meaning, of course. They both knew what Daehwi meant by that. And surely, it's about that.

"Tha--" Jinyoung was about to explain, when the nurse finally came back to the room, so he had to keep his tongue for next time, and was forced to return to his class. Dang, timing.

He slumped back into his desk in their classroom, and stared at who knows where, just thinking about Daehwi, Daehwi, and Daehwi.

How do I get him back? Ah.. I miss him. He thought, and just made grumbling noises while messing his hair out of frustration. Are we even fine? What are we now, seriously?

All throughout the classes, Jinyoung only dazed out, his mind seemed like it went to somewhere far, and his senses had been long gone from him that he didn't even hear the bell for lunch ring.

He went to the clinic and found Daehwi sleeping on his bed, his features grew even more angelic to Jinyoung's eyes. He looked like sleeping beauty, except that he wasn't.

"You were this beautiful, yet I decided to be a douche, and hurt you." Jinyoung whispered softly, as he brushed stray strands of hair away from the sleeping boy's pale features. After a while, Jinyoung quietly exited the room, careful not to wake Daehwi up.

What do I do with you, really, hyung? Daehwi's eyes flickered open, and as if on cue, a tear escaped from his eye as he said hyung in his mind.

~~~~~~~~~

It has been 4 months, since that day. 4 months of the two of them trying to forget the other. 4 months of trying to pretend they didn't feel their insides turn upside down whenever they see the other smiling, even though he wasn't the reason behind the other's smiles.

4 months. Just how many months do we have to endure, Daehwi-yah?

The small-headed Jinyoung sighed as he sat on the bleachers, after running around the field for 3 laps.

He looked at his wristwatch, and the clock was ticking, 10 minutes before the end of Daehwi's classes. He stood up, stretched for a bit, before walking to the direction of Daehwi's classroom.

Jinyoung found himself walking home with Daehwi. Not side by side but, Jinyoung just followed closely behind the younger boy. The walk was uneventful, but it wasn't awkward either. It was like they were back to stage one.

Upon arriving infront of Daehwi's house, Jinyoung, unable to control his hand, grabbed his hand, and turned him around to face him, with a loose hold on his wrist.

The shorter boy stared at him in confusion, while his hyung just took his time observing the angelic features of the younger. He will never get tired drooling over the younger's face even if he already saw them a lot of times.

"Let's be friends." Jinyoung muttered under his breath but Daehwi's ears were sensitive enough to hear the inaudible words the older told him.

The younger felt his knees wobble, as his heartbeat grew faster and louder, that he's afraid the silence between them would make it audible to Jinyoung's ears.

"Again, that is." The small-head continued, not noticing Daehwi going pale.

Was he ready to be friends with him, again? Was he ready to move on?

He doesn't even know what he is afraid of, anymore. Was it Jinyoung? Or getting hurt?

"Just let me stay by your side, even if it's not like before, Daehwi-yah." The taller whispered another time, which the shorter didn't fail to hear. It was if Daehwi's world stopped its time, as his gaze couldn't get diverted to something other than Jinyoung himself. It was as if Daehwi became a statue all of a sudden.

~~~~~~

Jinyoung and Daehwi regained their friendship, little by little, with Jinyoung making the extra effort of dragging him to hang out with him, suddenly barging in Daehwi's house with bags of chips, noodles, and drinks, suggesting a movie marathon, treating him to an amusement park, even until studying together.

Daehwi can't help but set aside his fear, and spend time with the older boy, as he saw the sincerity Jinyoung was showing him.

Jinyoung still felt a thin wall between them, but nonetheless, they stayed good friends, unlike before. Jinyoung is already contented for what he and Daehwi currently have.

And honestly, he prays everyday to whoever would listen to him, that nothing else would end his happy days with Daehwi. Sure, they weren't anything other than friends, but it was still better than having nothing at all.

But it seems like his prayers aren't meant to be granted.

He knew Daehwi would leave someday, to return to his actual home. However, he didn't expect it to be so soon.

The younger boy is leaving next month, but Jinyoung has no idea on what the exact date is. He just knows it's the month after. He wanted Daehwi to be the one to tell him, because that'd mean he matters to Daehwi.

But every day that passed by made Jinyoung anxious. Anxious that if he woke up one day, Daehwi is no longer in the same country as him. Anxious that Daehwi will leave without him knowing. Anxious that he'll be so stupid that he'll never try to move on from Daehwi. Anxious that he'll wait, and wait, and wait until the younger comes back. And, anxious that he might not even be able to see Daehwi ever again once his flight leaves the country.

"Jinyoung hyung? You're spacing out." Daehwi noticed, which snapped some sense to Jinyoung who hasn't eaten his food, while Daehwi already finished his. He just smiled to the younger boy, and grabbed his chopsticks to eat his noodles.

You'll tell me, soon, right?

~~~~~~~~

Today's the 21st "date" they'll have ever since reconciling, or at least Jinyoung considers it a date.

"I'm sorry, did you wait long?" Daehwi asked, as he came to Jinyoung who was standing infront of the theater entrace, quietly holding the tickets for a movie.

"Let's go in?" The older offered, and Daehwi agreed, but not before acting cutely to ask Jinyoung for popcorn and drinks.

Throughout the movie, their arms were linked with each other. Daehwi's head leaned against Jinyoung's broad shoulders, and they looked much like a couple.

The movie was heartbreaking, and Daehwi cried his eyes out, while Jinyoung just held his hand, while he cried, as a way of comforting him. But then, after the movie, Jinyoung wiped Daehwi's tears gently, with the loose sweater he was wearing, which actually made both of them feel things inside.

"Why are you such a cry-baby? You're usually not like this, though? I thought you rarely cry?" Jinyoung teased, as he walked beside Daehwi, exiting the theater.

"I'm not." Daehwi replied, with a pout, after a small sniff. And Jinyoung just couldn't help but poke his cheeks. So he did, and they just laughed together, for no reason.

They strolled around the mall, trying out clothes, and buying them if the other liked it. Daehwi just clung his hand to Jinyoung's arm, just like before. And Jinyoung could feel emotions coming back at him. Ones that make him want more than just being friends with the younger.

They ate lunch, in a restaurant they have visited before, once. The food tasted exceptionally nice, perhaps because it was accompanied by Daehwi's smile and hum, which made him glow even more in Jinyoung's eyes.

Daehwi dragged him in an arcade, and went to play the basketball shooting game, with Daehwi winning over Jinyoung. Not long after, they turned to the punching game, in which Jinyoung overpowered Daehwi.

"It's just like this." Jinyoung demonstrated, as he punched the bag, while Daehwi sat on the floor, hurt by the punch he previously did.

"Hey!" Daehwi grumbled, for Jinyoung did not bother helping him stand up.

This time, Jinyoung dragged Daehwi into a small karaoke room in the arcade, and requested a few songs for him to sing until the credits were up.

Jinyoung just really wanted to hear Daehwi sing so bad, that he dragged him there. And thankfully, Daehwi didn't turn down his request.

They ate dinner, at a noodles shop, and Jinyoung couldn't stop smiling from all the warmth and happiness he had exceptionally felt that day, in addition to the tasty warm noodles they've ordered. Everything was peaceful, and full of smiles.

I hope there's more days like this. With you. Daehwi.

~~~~~

"Today's Daehwi's flight, though?" His mom informed him, which made Jinyoung stumble all over the place, just to process what his mother said to him. But soon, he figured out that he shouldn't waste any more time, and asked his mother about the details like which airport, and what time is his departure. It turned out, Daehwi told his mother a few days back, but not Jinyoung. And honestly, Jinyoung felt this situation was surreal.

Jinyoung felt his heart break as he realized Daehwi didn't tell him he's leaving. So much for being friends, he didn't want to be only friends with him. He wanted something past the friends stage. He wanted the old them back. He didn't care if it seemed impossible, but he can't give up, can he?

Shit. Damn. Let me meet him. Please.

Jinyoung's shadow scattered throughout the airport in an attempt to find Daehwi before he goes back, before he leaves him, his life, and their dying relationship.

He ran anywhere, as fast as he can, to every corner of the airport. No, he wasn't going to go home without seeing him. No, he wasn't going to let him go. No.

"Lee Daehwi!" Not caring about other people's eyes, he caught up to the younger boy, and wrapped his arms around the smaller's fragile-looking upper body.

Daehwi felt an upturn in his stomach, and his heart hurts seeing Jinyoung at this place, at this moment. He was shocked to see his hyung here. Please don't let me waver. I need to leave. Hyung.

Jinyoung was panting so hard, he feels like any second from now, he'll faint but he can't. There's Daehwi who stood there like a statue, unable to move his feet like they were frozen. There's Daehwi whom he needs to win back whatever it might take.

"Why are you here?" Daehwi spoke, the only phrase he could make out from his tongue.

"I love you, Daehwi. I love you so much it hurts. I love you so much I don't want to let you go. I love you so much that I regret not fighting for you. It was always you for me. My heart never became someone else's. It was yours, and will continue to be yours." The breathless older guy confessed, as he held one of the younger's hand.

"I'm going back, hyung. I don't know if I can trust you. It still hurts. My heart still aches every time I see you and remember that day. I did everything, I can, hyung. I never did anything you didn't want me to. Can't I at least do something I want to do, now?" Daehwi asked him, trying to free his hand from the taller's tight but shaking grip.

"I swear Daehwi, I'll treat you the best way I can, I'll never let you get hurt again. Just please take me back, Daehwi. You know it's only you who I love. It's only you, Daehwi. Believe me, please." Jinyoung's knees touched the marble-tiled path, as he let go of the other's hand, not caring if the smooth surfaces were too cold for his skin's liking, he was barely keeping his senses together. The floor was cold, but it cannot compare to the numbing coldness he would feel after losing Daehwi.

"Hyung. Stand up, what the hell are you doing?" Daehwi was shocked to see this sight of Jinyoung. There was a bitter feeling of not being able to trust the older boy, though. But why didn't you try this hard back then? Why only now, hyung?

"Do you know how tiring it is, watching you from afar, careful enough not to appear in your line of sight just so I can spare myself of seeing your smile fade away because of me? Do you know how much pain I had to endure, every time you look away whenever you happen to look me in the eye? But do you know what hurts me the most? It's me. The only person I can blame is myself. That I caused you all the pain. That I made you cry for God knows how many times you did. That I broke us." Jinyoung's voice faltered in different pitches, and he can feel a big lump in his throat that makes it difficult to breathe. His fingertips clung onto the sides of the jeans the younger was wearing, and Daehwi felt. Daehwi knew. That Jinyoung was trembling so much, and he can feel himself worrying about the older boy.

"Leave me alone, Jinyoung hyung.." the younger pleaded, with watery eyes which weakened Jinyoung's hope even more. Daehwi found genuine emotions coming from the kneeling boy, that he was starting to be conflicted with himself. Jinyoung doesn't know how much Daehwi was questioning everything at this time, that even Daehwi was feeling different emotions all at once, too.

Jinyoung grabbed his hand as he stood up, and pulled him closer, his gaze meeting the younger's. Jinyoung's eyes were also filled with tears. Daehwi's heart wavered. He felt a needle pricking his heart every time the older's eyes blink with tears falling out. He wanted to hug him, and stop him from crying, but he had to endure. No, he's not going to fall for this. No, he's not going to let himself get hurt, once again. No, not Jinyoung, he begged in his inner thoughts.

"W-we haven't broken up, Daehwi-yah." Jinyoung cried, his voice cracking miserably. His breathing ragged. This was his last hope. When will he ever meet Daehwi up this close? When will he ever hold Daehwi up this close? When will he ever be with Daehwi, again?

"We did. Since that day, Bae Jinyoung." Daehwi replied firm but delicate. He was hurt. He was tired. He wanted to erase Jinyoung from his life. He wanted to forget the pain the older caused him. He wanted to mute his voice. He wanted him to get lost.

Like I'm cut by a sharp knife, you pass me by like that.

 

As if it's nothing,

 

Again today, you are passing me by, Lee Daehwi.

 

"If you leave me, I can't ever see you again." Jinyoung begged him to stay. Every sniff tore his heart into even tinier broken pieces. Jinyoung couldn't live without him anymore. He wants to be with him, now and forever. But seems like it was fighting against the impossible.


"Let's not see each other again.." Daehwi trailed off, and wiped a teardrop that escaped his monolid eye. "But I'll miss you, Jinyoung hyung." He continued, leaving a kiss on the older's forehead.

Who was Jinyoung kidding? They were done. Long after that day. Daehwi had let him go, already, and Jinyoung just realized that he was falling. Falling to the ground, without Daehwi holding on to him. Without the younger's warm fingers intertwined with his.

"I love Daehwi, and I know for myself that I do." Jinyoung scoffed at the girl infront of him claiming he doesn't love Daehwi.

"You don't love him, Jinyoung. Did you even?" The girl in a ponytail, draped her arms on his shoulders, around his neck, and leaned closer to meet his lips with hers. Jinyoung didn't even move away despite being in a relationship with someone else. Instead, he kissed her back. Something he didn't know he could do to him. To his boyfriend. To Lee Daehwi.

"Jinyoung hyung?" As the familiar voice rang a bell in his mind, he snapped back to his senses, and pushed the girl away, facing a shocked, but trying to be rational, Daehwi. He noticed that the younger's hands were curled into a fist. He was barely holding it in, and his eyes was flaring up with anger. But, they were brimming with tears. Tears filled with hurt, love, and the feeling of being betrayed.

"Daehwi-yah, i-it's.." Jinyoung didn't know what to do. His hands were shaking. His whole body, rather. His tongue seemed like they were cut off, and even his feet were glued on his spot. Daehwi didn't deserve this. And for a moment, he hated himself for being so stupid. He hated himself for hurting the love of his life. For tainting their sweet yet innocent relationship. For wasting his love. And, for ruining him.

Everything fell apart since that day, and the both of them won't forget that, at that time, they ended. Who knows if they'll meet once, again?