breathe in. stretch your arm out, up to the right. take a steady step to the left, turn around and take two more steps, stretch your other arm out, down to the left and pull the other one in, against your chest. heart beating a steady rhythm. feel the movements, be like the rain around you: always moving, feeling nothing and everything at the same time.
this routine had become really familiar to minho. when college was becoming too hard, life falling apart around him and stress seemed to be the only thing keeping him going, he came to the football court at a time when nobody sane would be wandering around and he let the music inside him lead his movements.
he had done this so many times he had lost count ages ago.
but tonight was different.
suddenly he was startled from his headspace in the middle of a turn, almost making him misstep and lose his balance. he whipped his head around fast, eyes scanning his surroundings. soon enough he found the culprit, standind in the spotlight of a flickering streetlamp mouth agape and stars in their eyes. minho froze to the spot, finally feeling how his wet clothes were sticking to his body.
the other blinked few times, becoming shy after he realized he was caught. minho got a shy wave sent to his direction before the other – boy? - sprinted off, something dropping from his hands. minho took too long to react so when he finally got his body moving the other was already long gone. he slowly padded to the spot where the other was standing and grabbed what they had dropped. it was a little notebook and when he flipped through it trying to find a clue who’s it was, he realized something. everything was written in a neat handwriting and in english. minho let out a sigh. he needed to ask from chan – when they had time – what it was saying.
turns out that minho forgot about the notebook completely the next day already, different deadlines breathing down his neck. it took him three weeks to have time to go out again and not feeling like dying even from the thought of breathing. his thighs were aching and the jeans rubbing against the cuts scattered on the top of his legs didn’t help it. what can he do, there’s not many ways he can let out all the ugliness inside of him.
so again, it was god knows how late and minho was slowly walking towards the empty field – except it isn’t empty. the person with starry eyes was there already, sitting on the audience. like waiting for something. minho didn’t dwell on it and instead walked in the middle of the field with sure steps despite his heart beating too fast. he got himself on the starting position and started his dance again, with the other watching him every now and then behind his book.
this went on for a few weeks, neither of them talking to each other until the exams hit minho hard. he didn’t have time to go out, again, for a few weeks. he felt miserable. no one saw him outside of his classes and when he was seen, he was looking worse every time. when all the hustle from the exams had died down he finally had time to go out. this time not only were his thighs aching, but his arms too. he was so tired of all of this. this time he barely realized he was already there, in the middle of the field, rain pouring down and making him shiver.
he blinked and slowly looked up, locking eyes with the boy (minho had come to the conclusion that the person was a boy. even though he was illegally pretty, there was something boy-ish). he still had stars in his eyes and suddenly a raw jealousy filled minho. it came out of nowhere and spilled over, making him want to scream and throw something at the boy. how could he, how he dared to still have that innocence and hope for a good life in him while minho had lost his way too many years ago. it wasn’t fair and minho couldn't stand it. it was tearing him apart, making him want to scream and make the boy’s eyes as dull as his were.
so he did the only thing he knew: he danced. he danced with such rage and power that even the boy, who was sitting far away could feel it. minho let his body lead him, emptying his mind of everything. there was nothing, he spilled all of his ugliness out in front of the stranger with endless stars in his eyes.
after what felt like hours minho collapsed to the ground, empty of everything. he had spilled his whole soul. quiet sobs filled the air and it took a few seconds from minho to realize he was the one making them. when he dared to look up, the stranger was already in front of him, offering a hand. minho reluctantly took it, swallowing down a whimper.
they didn’t talk, but the stranger smiled and offered him his jacket, to warm him up. minho took it shyly, muttering a quiet thank you. the other smiled, offering his hand for a handshake. without thinking too much minho took it.
”lee felix. or yongbok.”
”lee. lee minho.”
”c’mon, i know a nice quiet café. walk just a five minute”, felix said with a broken korean and minho smiled, a notebook flashing in his mind. without a word he nodded, and they started walking. for some reason minho knew that he wasn’t alone anymore. that the other somehow understood him.
and it was a nice feeling.