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Mingyu did feel a little uneasy about the way he’d treated Wonwoo. After all, Wonwoo did seem like a pretty chill person, and Mingyu hated people who went out of their way to make others unhappy. He’s such a hypocrite. Mingyu seriously considered meeting up with Wonwoo just to say he was sorry and return the journal. By this point, there was no turning back. He’d made it clear to Wonwoo what he wanted and how he intended to get it. That wasn’t so bad, right? If Wonwoo chooses to make Mingyu become the bad guy, then so be it. Mingyu believed he was right to do what he’d done. Yet, then again, Wonwoo was never mean to Mingyu, they probably would get along if their circumstances were different.

Mingyu sighed and ran a hand through his hair. He didn’t like being mean, he didn’t even know what had compelled him to be so mean to Wonwoo. Maybe this was the wrong move. Maybe being an asshole to your crush’s close friend and stepbrother wasn’t a way to win her over. After all, Wonwoo did say Leiah doesn't date assholes... Mingyu was definitely overthinking things. If Wonwoo played his cards right, maybe they even could be friends.

Yet, the unwritten laws of high school state that kids like Mingyu—handsome, popular, athletic, outgoing, and kids like Wonwoo—not too bad looking, unpopular, scrawny, and introverted could never be friends.

Suddenly, a notification on Mingyu’s phone snaps him out of his overthinking. He opens his phone to see a text from Wonwoo.

Wonwoo - r u here?

You see, last night, Mingyu decided that he and Wonwoo would need to talk in person in order for Mingyu to lay down his plan of action to get the girl of his dreams. So, the pair were meeting up at the mall, so they could sit at a table in the back of Barnes and Noble, since, according to Mingyu, no kids their age go into Barnes and Noble, so no one would see them and assume they were friends.

Mingyu gets out of his Jeep, shutting the door and locking it before texting Wonwoo back as he walked towards the entrance of the mall.

Mingyu - yeah. coming to b&n.

-

“Took you long enough.” Wonwoo says flatly as Mingyu sits down at the table across from him.

“Sorry. There was traffic.” Mingyu lied. What he should have said was, “Sorry, I spent 15 minutes sitting in my car overthinking everything I’ve said to you in the past 3 days and considering calling this whole thing off because I’m a pussy and I don’t know how to be mean to people without immediately feeling guilty about it”

“Oh. Well. Just say what you need to say so I can go home.” Wonwoo says while playing with the sleeves of his jacket.

Shit. Mingyu didn’t really think about what he was even going to tell Wonwoo. He knew what he wanted, but he never really thought about how to vocalize it. 

“Well... as you know, I want to date your stepsister, and I need you to tell me what she looks for in a boyfriend. I know she typically doesn’t date, but I think I can woo her perfectly and get her to be with me. I really like her. I think that with your help I can win her over.” 

Wonwoo laughs. Wonwoo. Laughs. Not a little giggle, a full body laugh. He tips his head back a little his nose scrunches up. It would be cute if it were anyone but Wonwoo. It would also be way cuter if he weren’t laughing about Mingyu announcing all his feelings about his giant crush. 

“Why are you laughing? Did I say something funny? I’m being serious!”

Wonwoo’s laughter dies down as he sighs. “What’s so funny is the fact that you think you can ‘woo’ Leiah with your face and a couple presents. She looks for more than looks and money in a relationship, which are pretty much the only two things you’ve got going for you.”

Mingyu grits his teeth. Mingyu was definitely a nice, compassionate, empathetic, caring person, who definitely had more going for him than looks and money! Well, that’s what Mingyu’s mother always told him. Mingyu takes a deep breath before he speaks to Wonwoo again. 

“Are you forgetting who has all the power here? Are you forgetting what’s on the line here?” 

“Just because I think your goal is dumb doesn’t mean I won’t help you, after all, you’re kind of forcing me to. Also, I hope you’re not seriously expecting me to be nice to you, after you threatened me and threatened to out me against my own will, when that’s the last thing I want. Now let’s get this over with. I can tell you her favorite candy, her favorite books and hobbies, what she admires in a person, hell, I’ll give you everything i know about her, but the last thing I’m going to give you is my respect.”

Boom. Just like that, Mingyu was out of words to say. Mingyu stayed silent for a moment before saying something else.

”We don’t have to be friends, just consider me your...” Mingyu stopped for a minute to think of what to say. “your coworker. just help me out okay, let’s do this quickly. What does she admire in people in general, and what does she look for in a boyfriend?”

”Well, she likes people who are nice, and caring, who don’t just treat her like a plaything that they can dispose of when someone hotter comes along. She doesn’t care about looks. She likes smart people who are well spoken and easy to talk to and who don’t pretend to be someone else for the sake of saving their reputation or trying to look cool.” Wonwoo lists off some of the things that Leiah likes and Mingyu smiles. She’s too kind and sweet for her own good, just why Mingyu had always liked her.

Yes, Mingyu’s had other girlfriends since he’d started liking Leiah, but not one girl came close. Leiah was beautiful and smart, she always stood up for what’s right. She was quiet when need be yet extroverted  She firmly believed in what’s inside a person being far more important than what they’re like on the outside. She was popular, but not mean or dumb, she was perfect, she had qualities Mingyu admired so much, she was just the mo-

“Mingyu! Snap out of it! I’m almost done.” 

Mingyu mumbled an apology and listened to the rest of Wonwoo’s speech.

”Just- what does she like? Like if i were to get her a gift and ask her out, what would she want?” Mingyu said, paraphrasing what Wonwoo hadn’t been saying on the notes app on his phone.

”She doesn’t directly state thing she wants unless it’s a wishlist of some sort. For a partner, she likes things that show lots of thought, that show that someone really cares about her and thought of her enough to get her a gift. She doesn’t care about physical things, she cares about the thought and motivation behind people’s actions.” Wonwoo explained with a dull look on his face.

”But I don’t really talk to her outside of the two classes we share together, how do I know what she likes?”

Wonwoo rolled his eyes. “Then obviously you’re not trying hard enough. Are we done here for today?”

Mingyu stopped for a second, unsure of himself. “Yeah, I guess. I’ll talk to you Monday.”

Wonwoo huffed and pushed in his chair, speed walking towards the exit wordlessly.

——————

“He's an asshole. Leiah wouldn’t touch him with a 10 foot pole if she really knew him and knew about all the things he’d said to me! Like sure, he’s got a nice face but that’s the only nice thing about him”

Soonyoung and Seokmin were both quiet as they listened to Wonwoo rant about Mingyu.

”He's popular right?” Soonyoung asks as he grabs a handful of popcorn from Seokmin’s bowl, earning him a slap on the hand from the other boy.

”Yeah. He’s friends with Jeonghan and his band of assholes. I can't believe someone as sweet and smart like Junhui hangs out with those guys” Wonwoo rants, pacing back and forth through Soonyoung’s kitchen. 

“Damn. Maybe Junhui just pretends to like them because he has no one else. There’s a lot of kids like that at our school, right Seok?” Soonyoung says, elbowing Seokmin lightly to ensure he was paying attention, to which Seokmin automatically nods.

 “And to even think someone like Mingyu even has the very capacity to like someone as smart and independent as Leiah, she’s nothing like all the other bimbos Mingyu’s dated!” Wonwoo rants, at this point, both Soonyoung and Seokmin wouldn’t be surprised if smoke started pouring out of the boy’s ears with how fired up he was about Mingyu. 

“Maybe he’s like a nice guy deep down but puts up a bad boy facade to try and keep his reputation, you know? It’s like a Wattpad story... the bad boy has a crush on the smart good girl” Seokmin points out. 

“Ooh that’d be too good” Soonyoung laughs.

“Definitely not. Mingyu is a downright asshole and there’s nothing that could convince me otherwise!”