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skate or die trying

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Seungkwan tries to live a humble existence, one without regrets. Which is better than being consumed with thinking about the time his mom just let him go on national television and dance his little heart out to Wonder Girls every time he closes his eyes to sleep and begs for the sweet release of death. His therapist calls this repression, he calls it enlightenment.

However, that is all to say that Boo Seungkwan does indeed regret wearing his best pair of cuffed baby blue chino shorts - the ones that make his ass look thicker than a bowl of rice porridge and show off most of his thighs. 

Actually, no. That’s a lie. He regrets listening to Soonyoung, who told him to wear his best cuffed baby blue chino shorts. “If you’re going for a whole, like, baby boy sex pest to woo Hansol into your 1000 thread count Muji sheets,” he had said this morning over video chat, as they do every morning to help each other pick out outfits. 

They hung up and Soonyoung sent him a text: “and wear that yellow hoodie you swindled hansol-ah into letting u borrow, u crazy little demon 😈😈😈 proud of u always hugs and kisses” and then thirty seconds later “tell mingyu to send me his noodzzzzz it’s the law of equivalent exchange” 

Maybe if he wore pants today Mapo-gu dirt and grit wouldn’t be lodged in the skin of his knees and half of his right thigh.

“Ow, fuck that hurts, Hansol!” Seungkwan hisses. “You’re clinically insane for thinking humans were meant to stick wheels on a wooden board and just, like, do flips and shit on it,” Hansol ignores him in favor of wiping a hydrogen peroxide soaked cotton pad over his scraped up knee, not in the least bit sympathetic to Seungkwan’s plight. 

At least Hansol’s being careful, big hand cupping the back of Seungkwan’s thigh near the crook of his knee. Not for lack of trying, but Seungkwan can’t help but be hyperware of the thumb rubbing a gentle circle on his skin. He’s not even sure Hansol is aware he’s doing it. Which actually might be worse for Seungkwan’s psyche.

Well, his psyche was already damaged. For several reasons, but the most recent one being Hansol tucking him close to his side, the normally negligible height difference between them suddenly vast. He had led him back into the skate shop, telling Seungkwan to hop up on the front counter as he went in the back to grab the first aid kit. Now, Seungkwan is all for gender equality and uplifting women, but he suddenly understands the damsel in distress trope. Hansol’s cologne lingers on Seungkwan’s person. Cedar-y and light. He adamantly refuses to swoon.

“You just need more practice,” Hansol says. Seungkwan’s breath hitches in his throat, not at the pebbles getting wiped away - even though it really fucking stings - but by how Hansol sidles over to stand in between Seungkwan’s open legs on the counter. 

He doesn’t want to practice, he just wants to be innately good at a thing to impress a cute, kind boy.

Hansol’s thumb doesn’t do anything to soothe the sting of peroxide against raw skin and his torn up pride. His stupid pride, however, feels rawer than the scrape. 

This is what he gets for agreeing to help Mingyu get footage for the skate shop’s instagram page when he can barely push off and balance on a skateboard. Seungkwan knew better. He doesn’t have that special agreement with gravity like Hansol and Minghao do, they clearly made some sort of eldritch pact for their ability to fly over twelve stairs and land without meeting the ground teeth first. 

On any normal old day of the week, Seungkwan would vehemently say no, absolutely not, not in a million years, fuck that. But, Seungkwan just had to be in the wrong place at the wrong time delivering Hansol’s black sesame milk tea boba. It was only Mingyu and Hansol working that day because Minghao was off for the next week being a fancy, sponsored pro-skater doing fancy, sponsored pro-skater things at some competition in San Diego. 

Everything was going fine. Mingyu wanted a shot of the golden hour sun glittering against the new rose gold trucks they just got in stock, and do a whole “summery vaguely homoerotic thing! Hansol can hold your hands and guide you along like he’s teaching you to skate, it’ll be cute.” 

Cute it was not. It was frankly evil and conniving. Mingyu said it with a smirk, quirked and fanged, in Seungkwan’s direction and everything. 

With Hansol’s fingers intertwined with his and guiding Seungkwan’s unsteady balance on the board they’re attempting to market, Seungkwan realizes like a smack to the face that Kim Mingyu is on purpose recreating the exact moment Seungkwan had the epiphany he was infected with CVH disease. Because Mingyu knows about Seungkwan’s affliction and is extremely well-versed in Seungkwan’s Chwe Vernon Hansol disease. Unfortunate decisions were made, and Mingyu had the privilege of being the first person Seungkwan told about this condition. But now he’s using that knowledge For money, like some kind of dirty capitalist, and bad fucking friend

However, several months prior, Seungkwan came back to their apartment one night and draped himself across the couch, across Mingyu’s lap, and into the face of Wonwoo’s cat Watson. He’s still not entirely sure why Wonwoo’s cat was in his apartment but that was a question for another day. A day when he didn’t have only Chwe Vernon Hansol on the mind, a fixed point to focus all his grey matter on.

“Watson, riddle me this. Imagine with me for a moment, that you too are a young, supple, and, dare I say it, nubile gentleman waiting to be courted. You’re the most eligible bachelor this side of the Han with an ass that just won’t quit. How do you reconcile with the fact that you are, indeed, a sexy twenty-three years young, yet you fell into the clutches of a cute boy with a skateboard and a large TikTok following like you’re a goddamn teenager?” Seungkwan asked. He doesn’t know what he expected but Watson batting him in the nose was not it. He sputtered and glared at Wonwoo’s cat, who shouldn’t even be in his apartment.

“But Hansol is a nice boy, the nicest even,” Mingyu said, picking up Watson and cradling him up against his chest like a baby. Seungkwan almost puked.

“No, he’s evil. He’s sunken his teeth into me like a leopard with its prey. You’ve seen his teeth. He could do it. Nay, he already has,” Seungkwan responded. He flipped over so he could stare Mingyu down in the eyes.

“What did the nicest boy in the world do that was so evil, Kwannie?” Mingyu asked. 

“He convinced me to skateboard. You know how I hate skateboarding,” Seungkwan said. 

“You only ‘hate’ it cause you weren’t good at it right away.”

“That’s besides the point.”

“That is absolutely the point. You wouldn't be friends with me or, like, everyone you know who isn’t a coworker if you actually hated skateboarding,” Mingyu said, gesturing around matter-of-factly. 

Sure, Mingyu happened to work at the same skate shop as Hansol and by extension meant that Seungkwan ended up friends with everyone who skated in Mapo-gu, but in the end he was there to woo Hansol with pick-me-up iced coffees and a view of his fat ass. Chwe Vernon Hansol who was the sole reason why Seungkwan continued to stop by the skate shop on his way back from teaching voice classes at the nearby entertainment company, even though it’s one train stop further than their apartment.

Seungkwan huffed at that. “Whatever. That’s. Irrelevant. I was visiting the shop on my lunch break—”

“To make sure Hansol looked at your magnificent ass.”

Seungkwan pursed his lips before continuing, “And he pouted at me when I wouldn’t get on the board he was doing flips on.” Mingyu’s eyes brightened and got that stupid look on his face when all the lightbulbs in his brain turned on at once.

“He tried to teach you didn’t he and you caught actual feelings for him. Did he hold your hands? Keep you steady, catch your waist when you leaned too far over? Oh, you’re blushing— Oh my god you like him. Ladies and gentleman, Boo Seungkwan finally admits he has a crush on another boy for once in his fucking life. You wanna kiiiiisss him, you wanna hoooold him, you wanna fuuu—“ And that’s when Seungkwan lunged at him.

Seungkwan has two functioning eyes. He is so well aware that Hansol is cute. And handsome. Maybe even gorgeous. Sexy, if he’s wearing something that actually fits him. And Seungkwan is a flirty and thriving gay man who likes attention now and again. If he wants Hansol to recognize that he, Boo Seungkwan, is a catch and a half, then sue him. He’ll see you in court.

Because, it is with great pride and satisfaction that Seungkwan can confidently say Hansol has stared at his ass more than once. The first couple times he wasn’t sure if it was just Hansol staring into the void in his usual Hansol way. But in the past two months, it was definitely his sweet rump Hansol was staring point blank at.

  Seungkwan handles his malady with some sense of decorum. He brings Hansol boba every Tuesday and Friday, they go out for coffee and gallery hopping nearly every weekend, and if Seungkwan knows he’s going to run into Hansol (or on purpose go out of his way to see him, not that that’s anyone’s business but his own) he wears a Soonyoung-approved booty enhancing outfit. Seungkwan knows that Hansol thinks he’s hot or, at least, cute. That he knows. And he can revel in that all he wants. 

It’s just that Seungkwan doesn’t handle boy emotions well. Or well, has a hard time believing or getting his hopes up that anyone would put up with him for more than a quick fuck in some dark club corner in Itaewon. He’s got a big mouth, a big personality, and even bigger neuroses. Yes, he and his therapist are working on it.

Seungkwan never allowed himself to think that Hansol might like him back in the lovey-dovey way.

But, back to the issue at hand. It’s also partially Hansol’s fault. Seungkwan’s balance was already teetering, but he decided to look at Hansol only to see his big brown eyes, fluttery full eyelashes, sparkly and wide with excitement already looking at Seungkwan with a big toothy grin, gummy and full. And that’s when the monochrome millennial pink skateboard launched itself from under his feet and he went from upright to flat backed on the pavement, no matter how hard Hansol tried to break his fall. Mingyu made himself suspiciously scarce.

And now, Hansol stands between his legs, cleaning up his cuts, in the dumb boutique skate shop Seungkwan’s in almost as often as the employees. There’s some horrible skate punk playing because of course Mingyu refused to take his suggestion of Kelly Clarkson seriously. 

Hansol tuts under his breath, smoothing the last bit of medical tape and gauze over Seungkwan’s knee, and looks up at Seungkwan, fond. If Seungkwan melts a little bit and gets goosebumps, that’s between him and god. No one can expect him to remain entirely put together when there’s a skater boy with messy blonde curls sneaking out from under his beanie tending to his wounds. 

There are freckles on the knobby bones of Hansol’s slim, but strong, wrists and Seungkwan wonders how’d they would look against his. Maybe even holding his, up and over his head, in a context outside of skateboarding. That’d be really nice. And fun. Hmm.

“I’m sorry I couldn’t break your fall,” Hansol says, a touch too sincere for Seungkwan to process it in a rational way. 

“Please, seriously, don’t worry about it. Me and gravity, fated enemies for as long as I can remember,” Seungkwan says. He trails off at the end only because Hansol’s gaze on him is so intent he forgets how to speak, butterflies rising up from his stomach into his throat. For once in his short, gay life, he’s run out of words.

“I’m not exactly in the business of letting, um, friends, get hurt if I can help it,” Hansol says. He trips over ‘friend’ a hair too much for Seungkwan, Hansol’s hands done smoothing down the medical tape, resting on Seungkwan’s thighs, a hint of a fingertip tracing its way up the hem of his baby blue cuffed chino shorts. Seungkwan gulps, but remains composed, tamping down his nervous energy.  

Seungkwan can play this cool. He can flirt his way out of a paper bag. He can navigate this. Easy. So he leans back on his hands. They squeak against the glass of the front counter. 

He’s painfully aware they’re in the middle of Hansol’s place of employment. 

“And what about, people you would consider, hmm, more than friends?” Seungkwan asks. He cocks his head a bit. Elongates the throat. Gives ‘em the ol’ slip of the neck, maybe a collarbone. He sneaks his tongue out to bite it between his teeth. There’s a small sense of delight found in watching Hansol follow the movement. 

Hansol eye’s flick back up to meet his. Bright, but something darker. Maybe even, hornier - fingers crossed, behind them. Hansol steps further into the vee of Seungkwan’s legs, palms sliding higher up on his thighs, thumb trailing behind to hook underneath the hem of Seungkwan’s shorts. His fingertips are burning against Seungkwan’s air-conditioned cool, bare skin. 

“Then I hope they give me another chance to protect them,” Hansol says, deep. Seungkwan feels dizzy with how close Hansol is now. Cedar-y cologne mixed with his black sesame boba breath. It should be gross. It is gross, really. Seungkwan can’t help but like it— a lot. The cut of Hansol’s jaw is sharper up close and his eyelashes are prettier and the freckles dotting the bridge of his nose are more apparent than ever before. Seungkwan wants to kiss every one of them. 

He’s overwhelmed, eyes frantically dancing across Hansol’s dumb handsome skater boy face. He’s so distracted by Hansol’s face that he doesn’t realize the hands on his thighs have trailing further behind him until Hansol’s grabs two handfuls of his ass and pulls him closer to the edge of the counter. He flings his arms around Hansol’s shoulders out of surprise, clutching him for purchase. 

Seungkwan’s blushing, he has to be. That was the sexiest thing he’s ever experienced in his life.

Seungkwan’s gasps. Through a hoodie and a t-shirt, Seungkwan can tell how cut Hansol is. He prays to whatever deity is out there that he won’t whine. They’re chest to chest, nearly dick to dick, and it’s Hansol’s turn to be smirking at Seungkwan. 

“You’re never getting me on a skateboard ever again, Chwe Hansol,” Seungkwan says back, breathier than he meant, but something changes in Hansol’s expression. Playful, knowing he’s got Seungkwan right where he wants him. 

“How can I convince you, Kwannie?” And that’s the final nail in the coffin. His CVH disease is terminal.

“Just fucking kiss me already, idiot,” Seungkwan sighs out, insistent. Hansol surges forward, hands leaving Seungkwan’s ass to cup his jaw, and slide into Seungkwan’s auburn hair. 

In the history of all kisses, well, all the kisses Seungkwan’s been a part of, this one takes the cake as the best one. Not like he keeps a totally secret log of every kiss he’s ever had but, if he did, he’d put a star sticker next to this one. 

Hansol’s lips are chapped against his but they move with each other, rather than against. It’s a dance together, rather than a fight to sort out who’s the better kisser or who’s gonna be on top by the end of the night. No, this was a summer teen romance, popsicle sticky sweet kiss, made sweeter by Hansol interrupting the flow of the kiss to grin into Seungkwan’s mouth. Seungkwan can’t help but meet Hansol’s smile with one of his own. Their teeth bump against each other, but Seungkwan doesn’t care.

Hansol tries to pull away but Seungkwan chases after him, like he’s been doing for months now, to press small, quick kisses to Hansol’s still grinning mouth. Hansol melts back into Seungkwan’s arms, playfully acting huffy, like finally kissing Seungkwan is some kind of chore

Until, Seungkwan wraps his legs around Hansol’s waist, dragging him in, kissing him dirty and Hansol moans into Seungkwan’s mouth. Breaths come heavier as he clumsily scrambles to get his hands under Seungkwan’s - well his hoodie - and feel Seungkwan’s smooth skin under his palms. Seungkwan flushes, feels his pants tighten slightly, and hopes the CCTV is broken today. 

 Actually, forget the CCTV. And forget the fact that they’re making out hot and heavy in the shop Hansol relies on for employment in the middle of the afternoon. All Seungkwan wants to think about is the exact moment when Hansol grabs his ass again to clumsily grind his hips into his.

He’s about to tear away from Hansol’s mouth to ask him if he wants to move this to the back room, but they’re interrupted by none other than Kim Mingyu bopping his way back into the shop. He’s got his hands full with a GS25 bag brimming with snacks and Seungkwan’s favorite convenience store iced coffee. Aw, Mingyu does love him after all.

That does absolutely nothing to qualm the bone-deep embarrassment taking root in his chest.

“I see you guys finally sorted out your shit!” Mingyu says gleefully, taking long, happy strides to the counter. He sets down the bag to lean over and look at them shit-grinned and pleased, chin in his hands. Seungkwan buries his face in Hansol’s big, beefy chest. Hansol laughs, head thrown back, but Seungkwan feels the happy thump of Hansol’s heartbeat. 

After some more teasing, Mingyu starts up a conversation with Hansol that Seungkwan largely ignores. About what, he doesn’t know, kickflips or whatever it is skateboarders do. He’s just in his bliss, sipping his iced coffee when Hansol brings him back into the loop with a question:

“Hey, is that my hoodie?”

 

 

Mingyu posts what is essentially a short film to the shop’s instagram page. All warm toned and slow-motion panning of Hansol focusing  on Seungkwan’s every motion. His eyes are kind and his smile is encouraging while Seungkwan is too busy keeping his head down to make sure his feet are on the board. There’s little moments where Seungkwan is stealing glances when Hansol isn’t looking. Poetic - in the summer teen romance sort of way. Mingyu leaves in the moment Seungkwan eats shit for narrative purposes. 

Seungkwan doesn’t regret it. His love story is captured, and capitalized on, but whatever. He can go back and watch the a-ha moment over and over, with Hansol’s chin hooked over his shoulder, rocking on his board back and forth, arms around Seungkwan’s waist. 

The shop sells out of the all-pink boards in two days.