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you & me, what are we?

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The kids pretend they can’t hear the quiet sniffling and crying. Kun knows that they do, because he catches Guanheng hesitating outside their room, hand on the handle and ear to the door; sees Yangyang bite down his usual snarky comments; knows that Sicheng, Xuxi, and Dejun exchange worried glances with each other. 

 

He knocks softly on the door. “Ten?”

 

He’d sent Guanheng out on an errand, knowing that would result in the boy roping in at least two of the others into going with him. The less people at home, the better.

 

“Ten?” He repeats, then pushes the door open when there’s no protest.

 

“I’m fine,” a voice croaks out, and it takes Kun a minute to find Ten in the fort of blankets he’s built around himself.

 

Kun stands, staring, and Ten hesitantly looks up with watery eyes. Kun sighs, crossing the room in two long strides and breaking down the walls of the fort to take Ten into his arms. Turns out, this succeeds in breaking down the walls to Ten’s heart too, because soon, the boy is sobbing into his shoulder, weakly clawing at Kun’s back.

 

“I’m sorry, I just—“ Ten’s voice is scratchy. “I don’t know why—I’m feeling—there’s so much going on—” He gets like this, mouth running ahead of his brain so he can’t form complete thoughts, and Kun knows to wait it out. “I missed—miss him so much.”

 

The last admission seems to send him into another fit of frenzy, and Kun’s heart hurts for different reasons as he holds the shaking boy in his arms. “I know, I know.”

 

When Ten has calmed down a little, Kun shifts them so they’re lying down. Ten immediately curls himself into him.

 

“You’re not fine, but you will be,” Kun mutters as he allows himself to press tender kisses to Ten’s hairline and his fingers to stroke a steady rhythm into soft hair.

 

He doesn’t know if this is okay, but Ten doesn’t push him away, so he lets himself have this moment of selfishness.

 

 

 

 

 

Kun wakes up to a hand pressed to his dick.

 

“What the fuck—Ten?” He blinks the sleep out of his eyes.

 

“Please, Kun, please, I just—“ Ten’s still in his arms, and he whimpers as he rocks his hips against Kun’s — which is a problem, because Kun can feel himself harden embarrassingly fast.

 

Kun, however, has a brain, and he prides himself in using it, instead of his dick, to think. “Ten, you don’t want this.”

 

“I do, I—“ Ten is pleading, his eyes puffy from crying, tear streaks lining his cheeks, lips trembling.

 

He’s the most beautiful man Kun’s ever laid eyes on.

 

“You don’t,” Kun whispers, broken.

 

“Kun,” Ten says, “please.”

 

Maybe it’s the use of his name. Maybe it’s the certainty of the plead. Or maybe it’s Kun, tired — tired of watching, of waiting, of hurting. He crashes his lips against Ten’s in a searing kiss that has Ten gasping and arching into him. Kun doesn’t give him a chance to breathe; he takes the opportunity to lick into Ten’s mouth.

 

It’s not the first kiss he’s dreamed of but it’s the only one he’ll get so he clings onto it.

 

“Kun, Kun,” Ten pants, and Kun knows what he wants.

 

“Clothes off,” he growls, and Ten is more than willing to comply.

 

Kun’s not much larger in stature than Ten, but like this, with him naked under Kun, he looks small — vulnerable. It makes Kun pause for a second, before Ten is pulling him down for another kiss while fumbling with his waistband. Kun gets the hint, detaching himself from Ten’s lips to pull off his shirt and kick off his pants in two swift movements.

 

For a moment, the only thing that fills the room is the sound of labored breaths and pounding heartbeats.

 

“Are you sure?” Kun asks, even as he can feel Ten’s erection press against his stomach.

 

Ten doesn’t answer, not breaking eye contact as he takes Kun’s hand and guides it down — past his nipples, past his flat abdomen, until they reach his cock. Only when Kun’s hand wraps around the leaking tip, do Ten’s eyes flutter shut as he moans prettily.

 

Kun’s dreamed of this exact moment so many times that he’s not sure this isn’t a figment of his imagination. But Ten’s cock is hot and heavy in his hand and Ten’s moans are breathy and needy near his ear — this is real.

 

Soon though, it’s clear that Ten wants more. He wiggles a bit, and magically produces a small bottle of lube from under his pillow.

 

“Under your pillow? Really?” Kun can’t help but snort. “Romantic.”

 

“Shut up and get your fingers in me,” Ten demands, passing him the bottle.

 

Kun’s not about to deny him that — or anything, really. He coats his fingers with a generous amount, then rubs them together in an attempt to warm the lube up.

 

“Hurry,” Ten tells him. “Are you going to fuck me or—oh!”

 

Kun shuts him up as he slips a finger inside. He watches in awe as it slides in and out, easy with the help of the lube. Kun doesn’t have the longest or slimmest fingers, but he’s pretty good with them — years of playing the piano haven’t been for naught. When he slips a second one in, Ten rolls his eyes up in pleasure. When he curves them just a little to hit that magical spot, Ten grips the bedsheets so hard his knuckles turn white.

 

“Kun, Kun, oh my god—“

 

“You’re so beautiful,” Kun mutters, shifting so that he can kiss Ten and swallow all of his gasps and moans.

 

The third finger is a surprise, and Ten tenses as soon as Kun eases it in. But Kun kisses him through it, his free hand stroking the sensitive skin just above his navel, until Ten is panting with need.

 

“Kun, please, inside me, now.”

 

Kun is painfully hard, his untouched dick throbbing against his stomach. Even so, he pauses to brush a strand of hair out of Ten’s heady eyes. “Condom?”

 

“Drawer,” Ten dutifully answers.

 

Kun reaches over and fumbles blindly until he finds what he wants. Under Ten’s fiery gaze, he rips the packet and rolls the condom on, then positions himself above. He wants to preserve this view — Ten, naked under him, flushed pink all over, legs spread open — in his mind forever.

 

“Ready?”

 

Ten rolls his eyes. “Qian Kun, I swear to god if you don’t—“

 

Kun pushes in, and Ten cries out. “You talk too much.”

 

Ten moans loudly in response. Kun grins as he waits for Ten to adjust to his size. He’s not big big. Probably not Xuxi big, and definitely not…well, not what-Ten-is-used-to big (Kun pushes that thought out of his mind). But he’s got a nice girth, and his length isn’t shabby. All in all, he’s pretty proud of his dick. Ten’s reaction only serves to boost his ego.

 

“Move,” Ten finally gasps out.

 

Kun complies, bottoming out and snapping his hips up for good measure. “Fuck, Ten.”

 

Ten whimpers, hands clawing at Kun’s bare back as he wraps his legs around his waist.

 

Kun’s ruthless in bed. Gone is the patient leader, the careful older brother. He’s a beast as he fucks into Ten, sometimes agonizingly slow, sometimes fiercely fast, always exceptionally deep.

 

“So good. You’re so good for me, Ten,” he praises, one hand coming up to flick over sensitive nipples.

 

“Please,” Ten moans, and Kun’s not sure Ten himself knows what he’s pleading for.

 

He has half a mind to flip Ten over and really have his way with him, but the other half of his mind tells him to memorize everything about Ten’s face contorted in pleasure — the mussed up hair falling over lust-filled eyes, pink cheeks contrasting the red of his kissed-out lips.

 

God, he’s beautiful, and Kun is a goner.

 

Next time, he thinks as he props himself on his elbows and drinks in Ten’s appearance. Next time, he’ll have Ten on all fours. A small voice in his head tells him there won’t be a next time, and he shoves that thought away by thrusting harshly up into Ten, eliciting the most delicious moan.

 

Kun drags his cock, slow, deliberate, agonizing. His search is rewarded, and he watches in awe as Ten convulses around him.

 

“Yes! There!” Ten chokes out.

 

Kun targets the spot forcefully, leaning forward to take an erect nipple into his mouth, and Ten gasps. “Kun, I’m—“

 

Ten cums, long and loud, and Kun stares down at the white substance sticking to both their stomachs. “Did you just—“

 

“I just came untouched,” Ten says, and there’s a hint of wonder in his words.

 

“Fuck,” Kun growls, picking up his pace, knowing he won’t last long, not after that. “Fuck, Ten, you’re amazing, you’re—“

 

He cums, Ten swallowing his groan with an open-mouthed kiss.

 

They lay there, spent and exhausted. When Kun pulls out, he feels Ten wince slightly. “Sorry.”

 

“Don’t apologize after you’ve given me the best fuck of my life,” Ten scolds, blissed out and happy.

 

Kun’s chest swells, and his heart almost hurts from the expansion. “Yeah? Not bad yourself.”

 

Ten swats at him, and Kun laughs as he makes to get up.

 

“Don’t leave,” Ten immediately says, latching a leg around his waist to keep him in place.

 

“I need to clean us up,” Kun tells him, softly. Knowing how clingy Ten is normally, it isn’t really a surprise how much clingier he is after sex.

 

“Kids might be out and about,” Ten says sleepily, and it makes sense, so Kun reaches for a few tissues to wipe them down.

 

He settles back down next to Ten, making sure to cover them both with a blanket in case Guanheng decides to barge in. Ten immediately places his head on Kun’s chest, snuggling close.

 

“Hey, Kun?”

 

Kun hums.

 

“Thanks. Not, uh, not for the sex,” Ten says, and Kun can feel the heat from Ten’s cheeks on his bare chest.

 

“You’re welcome,” he tells him, allowing himself one more moment of selfishness as he plants a kiss on the crown of Ten’s head.

 

“But thanks for the sex too.”

 

 

 

 

 

Ten bounces back after that. He smiles and laughs, eats and sleeps. The kids are relieved, Kun can tell. He’s glad they have their Ten hyung back.

 

Nothing between them has changed. They don’t talk about it, and Kun’s secretly glad. This way, he doesn’t have to deal with rejection. This way, he can close his eyes, relive the high, and pretend that Ten is his.

 

They’re busy planning and preparing for NCT 2020, which means 23 men in meeting and practice rooms, which means chaos and more chaos. Kun welcomes it — without the distraction, he’d have too much time to analyze every moment of that night.

 

But full group activities also mean seeing him. Seeing them. Seeing Ten laughing with him. Seeing Ten positively light up and sparkle. Because of him.

 

It kills Kun a little inside.

 

“Hi.” Ten sidles up to him after one of the first practices, the sparkle still in his eyes.

 

Kun raises his eyebrows. “Hi yourself.”

 

“Don’t wait for me,” Ten says, shy. “I’m…I’m heading to 127’s dorm.”

 

Kun feels his entire world crash down, but he forces a smile. “Have fun.”

 

Ten blushes, and if Kun wasn’t sure before, he is now.

 

They step out of the room together. Ten gives him a fleeting hug — Kun can feel his excitement vibrating — and then he’s walking away.

 

Kun smiles, raises a hand, waves to Johnny.

 

Kun turns, bites down on his lip, tries not to cry.

 

 

 

 

 

Everything’s fine, through Resonance parts 1 and 2, through the new year. NCT 2020 era finally comes to an end, and it’s bittersweet.

 

Kun busies himself in the studio. Ten busies himself in the practice rooms. And perhaps in other things as well, but Kun doesn’t think about that.

 

They’re back to normal, and no one who hears their usual bickering banter would guess that Kun lies awake at two in the morning, fisting his cock as Ten’s naked body paints his eyelids.

 

Everything’s fine, or at least Kun thinks it is, until he finds Ten crying in an empty practice room. There’s a woman crooning about heartbreak over the speakers, but even her powerful voice doesn’t drown out Ten’s sobs.

 

Or maybe Kun’s just always more attuned to anything concerning Ten.

 

He takes a seat, lets Ten rest his head against his shoulder.

 

“I’m pathetic,” Ten whispers.

 

“No, you’re not,” Kun assures him. No one’s more pathetic than him — pining after someone so unattainable.

 

“I’m useless,” Ten continues, working himself up into a fit. “I’m disposable. I’m—“

 

Kun silences him with a bruising kiss. It’s almost violent in intensity — and Kun initiated it. The realization makes him pull himself off. He doesn’t know if Ten wants this. He doesn’t know if Ten wants him.

 

But it becomes apparent that Ten wants something, because he’s pushing Kun against the mirror and climbing into his lap to straddle him.

 

“Ten,” Kun warns as the dancer rolls his hips.

 

“Kun,” Ten returns, and it’s a reminder that he’s not afraid of a challenge, not afraid of Kun.

 

Kun takes a deep breath, and when he locks eyes with Ten again, it’s electrifying. He’s not sure who leans in first, but soon they’re pulled flush against each other, Ten’s fingers winding through the hair at the nape of Kun’s hair to angle his mouth upward as Kun encircles Ten’s waist to pull him closer.

 

“Kun,” Ten breathes, and this time, it’s less of a challenge and more of a plea. Though the challenge comes back in the form of a smirk when he palms Kun through his jeans and successfully brings out a growl.

 

“You play a dangerous game,” Kun murmurs, fingers slipping under Ten’s loose shirt to stroke at bare skin.

 

“I’m not playing,” Ten responds, shivering.

 

Kun smiles bitterly. If only.

 

Ten reaches over for something in his bag, grinding down harshly as he does. Kun grits his teeth, not wanting to give Ten the satisfaction of riling him up even more, but his mouth drops in surprise when Ten settles back into his arms and he sees what was grabbed.

 

“Condoms? In your gym bag?” Kun’s eyes nearly bulge out.

 

Ten winks at him. “And you thought under the pillow was romantic.”

 

Kun laughs, Ten joins him, and it helps lighten the air around them.

 

“Okay. How do you want me?” He asks, leaning in to press his lips against Ten’s, gentle, even as he accepts the foil.

 

“In me, preferably,” Ten tells him pointedly, and Kun rolls his eyes.

 

“You’re insufferable,” Kun mutters, but shoves himself off the ground, lifting Ten up effortlessly with him.

 

Ten squeals, quickly wrapping his arms around Kun’s shoulders and his legs around Kun’s waist. Like this, it’s easy. Easy to pretend, easy to believe. Pretend Ten wants him, believe Ten loves him.

 

“Gonna bend you over and fuck you good,” Kun says instead, because that’s easier.

 

Ten moans prettily in his ear, and Kun can’t move fast enough to the table in the corner. He almost wants to press Ten to the mirror, to see everything, but the sane part of his brain reminds him of the janitors who already have to deal with sweat on the ground - they really don’t need to be scrubbing dried cum off the mirrors too.

 

Kun sets Ten, uncharacteristically quiet, onto the table. When he steps back and meets Ten’s eyes, he sees the usually bright and confident gaze dim a bit with lust, want, and a bit of curiosity. He’s waiting — waiting for Kun to tell him what to do.

 

And oh. That’s different. Good different, Kun thinks as his dick twitches in his pants.

 

“Get off and bend over the table,” Kun directs, and it comes out a bit more breathy than he’d like, but it gets the message across.

 

Ten grins, obedient, as he hops off the table and makes a show of pressing his entire torso flat to the table as he arches his ass up into the air.

 

It’s not on all fours, but it’ll have to do.

 

Kun wastes no time in pulling down Ten’s sweatpants and underwear — and oh, isn’t this a view. Ten’s bare ass in the air, cock already leaking precum. It’s hot, and it would be hotter without a shirt and his pants bunched at the ankles, but there’s something exciting about fucking in such a big open space, where theoretically, anyone could walk in.

 

“So pretty,” Kun praises, ripping the condom packet and coating his fingers with the included lube. He thrusts one in without warning, and Ten lets out a choked cry.

 

“You like that?” He murmurs, watching as Ten grips the edges of the table and fucks back onto the finger. In no time at all, Kun slips in a second one. He helps out a writhing Ten, scissoring the digits slow and deep. Ten adjusts frighteningly fast because soon he’s rutting against the table and whimpering, and it doesn’t take a genius to know that he wants more.

 

Kun works the button of his jeans undone with one hand, not wanting to take his fingers out of Ten, and before long, he’s rolling the lubed up condom onto his dick and pressing at Ten’s hole, now clenching over nothing.

 

“God, please, Kun,” Ten begs, panting and trying to push back.

 

“I know, baby, I know,” Kun soothes, his hand fluttering under Ten’s shirt to hike it up so he can grip onto his hip.

 

When he finally pushes in, Ten groans harshly, and Kun worries for a second that there wasn’t enough prep. But then Ten pushes his hips back forcibly and Kun’s the one groaning.

 

“Want it rough?” Kun growls, folding over so his chest is pressed to Ten’s back and they’re flush against each other.

 

“Fuck,” Ten pants, turning his head and searching blindly for Kun’s mouth. “Yes.”

 

Kun snaps his hips, rough, and proceeds to drill into Ten. The slap of flesh in the practice room echoes, as do Ten’s small moans of pleasure, and it’s so filthy that Kun doesn’t think he’ll last very long.

 

“So…good…” Ten mumbles, his voice shaking slightly from the force that Kun fucks into him.

 

“Fuck, Ten, you feel so good around me. So tight.” Kun spares a glance at the full length mirror lining the wall, and is immediately entranced. Ten is captivating, head thrown back in pleasure as he rocks back onto Kun. The image of the movement of his cock into Ten is so sinful that even he has to look away.

 

Kun leans forward, reaching around Ten to grab his neglected cock, and Ten gasps at the first touch.

 

“Kun, no,” Ten breathes, but he’s pushing into Kun’s hand. “I’m going to—“

 

“Yeah?” Kun grits out, timing his thrusts to Ten’s small thrusts into his hand. “Cum for me.”

 

Ten does with a shout, clenching around Kun who follows suit with a deep groan as he snaps his hips once more to bury deep into Ten’s warm walls.

 

Once he’s caught his breath, Kun unplasters himself from Ten’s back as he pulls out. He knots the condom and throws it into the bin next to them, hoping the janitors don’t actually go through the trash. He tucks himself back into his underwear and jeans, then pats Ten’s still bare ass.  “Come on, it’s late. Let’s go back.”

 

“Jelly,” Ten mutters, immobile.

 

Kun laughs. “Stop inflating my ego after sex. It’ll get to my head.”

 

“So good,” Ten says, almost to himself.

 

Kun feels his face pink with happiness at the praise. “So you got any wet wipes in that handy gym bag of yours?”

 

“Yeah,” Ten says, moving just enough that he can twist his body to lie supine on the table.

 

“Ready on the go, huh,” Kun notes, light even as the words and thought leave a bitter taste.

 

He cleans Ten up gently, even helping him pull up his pants — until he can’t anymore because Ten won’t budge. “Come on, Ten.”

 

Ten sits up with effort, looping his arms around Kun’s neck and then pushing himself off the table so that his entire weight is hanging off. Kun rolls his eyes, shifts to accommodate the added weight, and successfully pulls Ten’s sweats up and over his ass.

 

“See, that wasn’t so hard was it?” He mutters.

 

He meets Ten’s eyes, soft and satisfied, and this moment feels more intimate than anything they’d done.

 

“Hi,” Ten whispers, resting his forehead against Kun’s.

 

“Hi,” Kun whispers back, pressing a soft kiss against Ten’s lips before he can talk himself out of it.

 

But Ten hums and angles his head for a better reach. This kiss is slow and languid, more tongue and less teeth. And just as Kun thinks he’s going to die of asphyxia, Ten pulls himself away and off, landing lightly on his feet. “Let’s go home.”

 

Kun’s heart twists painfully in his chest. Because Ten says that so easily, as if they’re returning to their own shared home, instead of a dorm of seven boys and three pets.

 

But it’s something, so he just lets himself shoulder Ten’s sex gym bag and follow its owner out of the room. “Yeah, let’s go home.”

 

 

 

 

 

They become busy again, preparing for a full fledged WayV comeback. Like with Resonance preparations, Kun is grateful for the exhaustion, because it means he doesn’t have time to think.

 

Thinking is dangerous, he’s learned. Especially thinking about Ten. Especially thinking about Ten when he’s plastered to Kun’s side nowadays.

 

He’s honestly not sure what changed. After the practice room fuck, Ten seemed to glue himself to Kun. It’s not too unusual — comeback prep times are physically and mentally strenuous, so everyone kind of naturally gravitates more toward each other for support and encouragement. But it’s gotten to the point where even Sicheng has mentioned something in passing (“Is Ten okay? He’s been spending a lot of time with you”), leaving Kun more flustered than he’d like to admit.

 

Their schedule is hectic, a cycle of the recording studio, dance practice rooms, and home. Kun, like the good leader he is, lets the kids shower first when they get back so they can get a few more minutes of shut eye. He’s waiting for his turn when Ten pops into his room.

 

“Everything good?” He whispers, mindful of an already asleep Yangyang.

 

Ten nods, tiptoeing in and tucking the blanket a little tighter around the youngest on his way to Kun’s bed. The action makes both of them smile slightly.

 

“I’m still sweaty,” Kun protests when Ten climbs under the covers and motions for him to join.

 

But Ten has a lethal power in his pout that Kun has yet to learn how to resist, so he can only sigh as he slides in next to Ten’s now familiar body.

 

“Tired?” Ten asks, laying his head on Kun’s chest. 

 

Kun hums, because he doesn’t know what to say. This is new — cuddling in bed without sex. He likes it too much to push Ten away, but knows better than to indulge in it. So he stays still, letting Ten curl an arm over his stomach and hook an ankle around his leg.

 

“You’ve worked hard,” Ten murmurs, and shifts his head so he can nose into Kun’s neck. Kun stretches a little to expose more of it, not having enough willpower to deny himself this pleasure. He can feel Ten’s fingers moving in small circles, relieving hard knots of stress and kissing the tenderness away. It must not be comfortable for him, his wrist caged between Kun’s back and the mattress, but Ten doesn’t complain, so Kun doesn’t either.

 

Kun lets out a comfortable sigh as he relaxes in Ten’s hold.

 

“You’re too stressed for your own good,” Ten admonishes lightly, magical fingers still working into tight muscles.

 

“Everyone’s stressed,” Kun reasons. He’s not special.

 

“Yeah, but you’re you,” Ten says vaguely.

 

Kun frowns. He tries to pull away to look at Ten properly, but he’s quickly subdued by a light swat on his stomach. “What’s that supposed to mean?”

 

Ten shrugs. “You’re Kun ge. You worry and then worry more.”

 

The frown grows deeper, etching into his eyebrows. “That makes me sound really lame.”

 

“Hey.” Ten seems to sense his shift in mood, because he pushes himself up onto an elbow to look at Kun, who immediately misses his touch. “None of that. It’s what makes you a great leader.”

 

Kun doesn’t say anything, because Ten is so close, and so beautiful.

 

Ten flops back down, attaching his lips to Kun’s jaw. “For the record, I don’t think you’re lame.”

 

“Yeah?” Kun breathes, letting his eyes flutter shut.

 

Ten shifts up a bit, his lips now at the corner of Kun’s lips. They buzz when Ten answers, “I wouldn’t do this with someone I thought was lame.”

 

And Kun wants so badly to ask what exactly this is, but he’s scared, so he keeps his mouth shut. Instead, he freezes when Ten presses a sweet, tender kiss onto his lips before settling back down into his arms.

 

It doesn’t take long at all for Ten’s breathing to even out and for his body to go slack, and Kun kind of hates him for it. Because he’s wide awake now, his body and mind buzzing.

 

“Kun ge, the shower’s open—“ Dejun lightly barges in, then stops when he sees the situation. He seems genuinely apologetic when he whispers, “Sorry.”

 

Kun extracts himself from Ten’s grip, careful not to wake him up. “Nothing to be sorry for.”

 

Dejun hesitates, stopping Kun as he walks past. “Ge…”

 

He’s too perceptive for his own good, Kun thinks as he pats the younger’s still wet hair. “You can turn off the lights, I’ll sleep in the other room tonight.”

 

Ten’s room, Ten’s bed. It’s a better option than with Ten, in Ten’s arms.

 

 

 

 

 

Kun takes a bus to the company the next morning, an hour before any of them even have to be awake. He had to quietly coax a drowsy and confused Guanheng back to sleep, slipping out of the dorm in a thin jacket because it was the only thing lying around in the living room. It’s dark and freezing, and he hates himself, but he knows he’d hate himself more if he saw Ten asleep, curled up on his bed like he belongs there.

 

He loses himself inside his favorite studio room, drowning in nothing but music. He’s in the middle of a hard-hitting chorus when the door opens and disrupts him.

 

Xuxi stands tall in the doorway. “Thought I’d find you here. Dance practice starts in fifteen.”

 

“Thanks,” Kun mutters, quickly grabbing his stuff. He’d lost track of time.

 

Xuxi grabs his arm on the way out. “You okay?”

 

Dejun must have mentioned something to him, because his eyebrows are pulled tightly together in a frown, his eyes worried.

 

Kun smiles a little. “Fine.”

 

“Ge—“ There’s an edge to Xuxi’s voice, and Kun winces.

 

“Qian Kun!” A familiar voice booms from down the hall, a few pitches higher in his fury.

 

Xuxi looks between him and Ten for a moment before sighing. He gives Kun a quick hug, whispering “good luck” in his ear, before sauntering off to Ten and repeating the same motions, then disappearing around the corner.

 

Kun walks to Ten, slow.

 

“Where were you?” Ten demands, and there’s a part of Kun that wants to kiss the sass off of him.

 

Instead, he jerks a thumb back to the room he just came out of. “Studio.”

 

Ten’s eyes narrow. “So early? Why?”

 

Kun shrugs. “Couldn’t sleep.”

 

Ten inhales sharply, like he’s been punched in the gut. “Did you…did you even sleep in your bed?”

 

Kun gives a pained smile. “Ten, can we talk later? Xuxi said we have practice so—“

 

As he turns to leave, Ten reaches for him, his fingers gripping the ends of his shirt so tightly that Kun’s worried it might stretch the fabric. They’re close, Ten coming even more so by taking a step forward.

 

“Kun, can we—“ Ten starts.

 

“Hey guys,” a voice cuts in. “Oh, am I interrupting?”

 

Kun looks down the hall and almost wants to laugh. When Ten immediately lets go and takes two steps back, he wants to cry instead. “Hi Johnny hyung. No, I was actually just going to dance practice.”

 

“Kun—“ Ten tries again, taking a step forward as Kun steps back.

 

There’s something akin to disappointment or hurt or confusion in Ten’s eyes, but Kun’s own eyes are seeing green, so he just continues to take steps backward, away from Ten. “Don’t be too long.”

 

He makes up an excuse when Ten doesn’t show up on time to practice. He can feel Xuxi’s eyes boring into him, but he ignores the feeling. Ten slinks into the room ten minutes later, mouth pressed into a thin line. He bows to the teacher, taking his place in the formation without meeting anyone’s eyes. Xuxi’s intense gaze has progressed to insistent pokes on his back, but he swats him away.

 

Practice is intense, and Kun’s sleep-deprived body aches after. To escape Xuxi’s questions, he makes a hasty exit back to his studio. He’s barely turned on the computer when the door flies open and Ten tornadoes in.

 

“Is everything—“ Kun stands up, alarmed.

 

But Ten pushes him back into the seat, rolling the chair so that it’s facing him and Kun is staring at his stomach. Kun blinks, and suddenly he’s staring at the top of Ten’s head.

 

“What—“ He starts, but that quickly dissolves into a groan as Ten presses one hand to the front of his crotch while the other fumbles at his waistband. “Ten, wait—“

 

But Ten doesn’t listen, lithe fingers slipping beneath his sweats and underwear to grab his cock. Kun’s mildly embarrassed that he’s immediately responsive, but Ten doesn’t give him a chance to think about it as he tugs at his sweatpants with more force.

 

“Ten,” Kun breathes, and this time, Ten does look up at him. There’s pain in his eyes, as well as unshed tears, and Kun is stunned into silence.

 

It’s not fair that he looks this pretty, even so close to crying.

 

“Tell me you don’t want this and I’ll leave,” Ten says, and his voice wavers.

 

Kun inhales deeply. That’s not fair — Ten, kneeling between Kun’s thighs with cherry red lips and trembling eyes, is not fair. But he’s still looking at Kun, hand gripping his now fully hard cock, so Kun doesn’t say anything as he presses on the back of Ten’s head to lower it to his tip.

 

Ten immediately takes him deep, and Kun groans. “Fuck, Ten, slow—slow down.”

 

Ten, as usual, pays him no mind as he splays his palms on the top of Kun’s thighs and relaxes his throat. Every time Kun thinks Ten will gag or come up for air, he feels his cock slide a little bit further into that wet cavern. Finally, Ten lifts his head, but the relief is fleeting because he’s soon back, alternating between taking him deep and sucking at his head. Every movement is a mini explosion in Kun’s mind, and he keeps his stomach taut as his fingers find their way into Ten’s hair.

 

“Yeah, that’s it,” he groans, wrecked, when Ten goes deep again, shaking his head slightly so he vibrates around the shaft, dribbling slick spit down his chin.

 

Ten backs off a bit, sliding his tongue around the slit as one of his hands come up to to pump up and down a few times before flitting under to squeeze around Kun’s balls. Just as soon, the hand disappears, but not back to Kun’s thigh, and Kun, through a hazy mind, realizes that Ten is jerking himself off.

 

The thought is so arousing that Kun grunts, bucking his hips up unconsciously. Ten, though surprised, seems to welcome the movement. Completely throwing away any semblance of tidiness, he dips his head back down, the wet noises he makes as he does downright filthy.   

 

And then he moans lowly, the vibration and narrowing of his hot mouth around Kun’s cock so good that Kun has to grip the handles of his chair. Out of his blurred vision, Kun sees Ten’s hand on his own cock speed up, and that’s how he knows he’s close too.

 

“Ten,” he rumbles, a warning.

 

But Ten takes it as encouragement, speeding up and sucking harder, his tongue doing wonders, until Kun is arching off the backrest and shooting his load into Ten’s mouth. Ten takes it all, hollowing out his cheeks until Kun is milked dry and sensitive. He swallows, and Kun watches his Adams apple bob up and down intensely. There’s still some cum dribbling out the side of his mouth when Ten reaches his orgasm, crying out as he jerks himself to completion.

 

They’re both silent as Kun cleans them up with some tissues. Ten sits in Kun’s chair, biting down on his lip as he watches Kun.

 

“I can’t do this anymore,” Kun finally whispers, voice breaking, and he has to turn away to hide the sudden tears that fill his eyes.

 

“I broke it off,” Ten says. "It's been over," and it’s desperate, pleading.

 

“Ten,” Kun whispers, and it’s just as desperate, just as pleading.

 

There’s a moment of silence before Kun hears soft sobs behind him. He wills himself not to turn — if he does, he knows he’ll fall to his knees and take Ten into his arms. He can’t do that, not now.

 

Kun takes a deep, shuddering breath. “I need to—“

 

Just as he makes to leave, Ten’s hand comes to a rest on his shoulder. It burns, through the layer of his shirt, through his skin, all the way down to his heart.

 

“I’ll go. It’s your studio. I’ll—“ Ten is still crying, and Kun’s heart shatters. He’s gone then, taking with him the warmth of his hand and the shards of Kun’s heart.

 

He waits for the door to click shut, waits more than enough time for Ten to disappear, before he allows himself to break down.

 

 

 

 

 

They’re good at pretending. At least in front of cameras, they can act like nothing’s wrong.

 

The kids though, they’re observant — or maybe they just know them too well. And they worry.

 

Sicheng’s the one who approaches him about it. It makes sense, that he would take the leader role amongst the kids. “Alright, what’s up with you and Ten?”

 

“Nothing,” Kun mumbles. “Oil, please.”

 

Sicheng passes him the bottle without blinking. “You were attached at the hip last week and now you’re not speaking.”

 

Kun doesn’t reply as he waits for the oil to heat up in the pan.

 

Sicheng crosses his arms in front of him, observing Kun. “Jaehyun told me Johnny hasn’t seen Ten in months.”

 

“Oh?” Kun tries to act nonchalant, but his shaking fingers as he goes to crack the egg give him away. Meetings, practices, and random encounters aside, it’s true that Ten hasn’t been over to the 127 dorms in a while. Months?

 

“Kun ge,” Sicheng sighs, exasperated. “We’re worried about…”

 

“I’ll figure it out,” Kun interrupts. “I won’t let it affect the group.”

 

Sicheng grabs the spatula out of his hand. “You think we’re worried about that? We’re worried about you.”

 

Kun looks away from Sicheng’s piercing gaze. “I’ll get over it.”

 

Sicheng is silent for a moment. “Guanheng says he’s been crying himself to sleep every night.”

 

Kun flinches.

 

“What are you trying to do?” Sicheng asks, gentler. “You’re only hurting yourself and him.”

 

“He doesn’t…” Want me? Love me? Kun trails off, doesn’t know what he wants to say.

 

“He does,” Sicheng replies anyway, sounding confident and firm. “He just needed some time. And now you need some time.”

 

“Don’t have time,” Kun mutters, looking away again.

 

Sicheng places the spatula back in his hand. “Then you better hurry.”

 

But Kun doesn’t hurry.

 

He’s still confused and hurt, and Ten won’t even look at him in the eye anymore. That confuses and hurts him even more, because now they’re acting like a couple who broke up instead of fuck buddies who stopped fucking.

 

“God I’m tired of this,” Guanheng says, slamming his head into a pillow from his spot on the couch.

 

Kun raises an eyebrow. “Change the channel then.”

 

“Not of the show,” Guanheng clarifies, rolling his eyes. “Of you.”

 

“Uh, sorry?” Kun replies, unsure.

 

“Of you and Ten!”

 

Silence.

 

Guanheng fixes Kun with a stare. “He cries out your name in his sleep.”

 

Kun flushes. “No he doesn’t.”

 

“I sleep across the room from him, ge, I would know.”

 

Kun gnaws on his lower lip.

 

Guanheng softens. “He’s never…he’s never, uh, said anyone else’s name in his sleep. Ever.”

 

It’s Guanheng’s way of telling Kun that it’s new and that it means something. Something about that makes him feel like punching himself.

 

“He cries until he’s exhausted and falls asleep. Ge…I love you. I love him.” Guanheng stands up, sighs. “Please fix this.”

 

 

 

 

 

Just like it makes sense for Sicheng to take charge on behalf of the kids, it makes sense for Yangyang to be the one to put a plan in motion.

 

A terrible plan, but that’s also pretty on brand.

 

He should have seen it coming from the moment Dejun barged into their room, arms flailing and yelling about cats. Dejun’s a horrible liar and a decent actor, so the result is a very confused and mildly concerned Kun, who slips his headphones off and follows Dejun to Guanheng’s and Ten’s room.

 

The last thing he sees before the door is slammed in his face is Xuxi’s broad grin.

 

“Guys,” he warns, trying the doorknob and finding it predictably locked from the outside. “Let me out.”

 

“Not until you guys talk it out!” Yangyang gloats from the other side, and it’s only then that Kun realizes he’s not alone.

 

“Hi?” Ten greets from his bed, slightly bewildered.

 

Kun’s heart thuds harshly. “Hi.”

 

It’s the closest they’ve been alone in what seems like years but in actuality has been less than two weeks.

 

“The kids…” Kun starts as an explanation, and doesn’t know how to finish.

 

“Yeah,” Ten says quietly. He sits up, bringing his knees to tuck under his chin. It makes him look impossibly small and completely endearing. Kun can’t look away.

 

Ten must feel eyes on him, because he hesitantly looks up. There’s silent pain communicated, from both of them, and it’s so palpable that Kun has to take a moment to catch his breath.

 

“I’ve missed you,” he blurts out, and it makes him so nervous that he feels nauseous. Which is ridiculous, because this is Ten. Ten, who he’s known longer than everyone besides Sicheng. Ten, who argues with him at any given moment but also squeezes his hand in silent support. Ten, who asks for input on his choreography and gives input on Kun’s compositions. Ten, who he’s been in love with for more than two years.

 

Ten’s eyes water immediately, and he hides behind his long hair as a tear slips out.

 

“Hey, hey,” Kun says, alarmed as he approaches, then hesitates. Can he? Should he? But he’s never been able to leave Ten alone, especially not when he’s crying. Crying because of him?

 

It’s muscle memory, how he climbs in next to Ten, grabs his legs and slides them easily across his own thighs to pull Ten close. His arms circle around Ten’s waist - maybe a little tighter than usual because fuck, he’s missed him - and he feels the small body shaking.

 

“Why are you doing this?” Ten whispers, wavering for only a second before he goes pliant in Kun’s arms. “You don’t talk to me for two weeks and then…”

 

“Ten, I’ve liked you for over two years now,” Kun says, softly. It’s a relief, admitting it out loud after so long, but it’s also a binding panic that grows with every second that Ten stays silent. “Before debut, hell, before Dejun even joined the company.”

 

Ten is still quiet, stock still in his arms.

 

So Kun pushes on. “And then Johnny hyung happened. You guys were so...compatible. He’s this big sunshine, warm and friendly, and perfect for you. Because you’re…you’re a star, Ten. You’ve always been a star. I couldn’t reach you then, and I still can’t reach you now. I didn’t deserve…don’t deserve—”

 

“I like you,” Ten interrupts. “I’ve liked you for a while now. Not two years, but a while.”

 

Kun is so stunned that he doesn’t even realize Ten has moved until he’s staring into deep dark eyes.

 

“Ten, no, I…” Kun closes his eyes, tries to shove the image of Ten looking at him so lovingly out of his mind. “I shouldn’t have slept with you that first time. I shouldn’t have taken advantage of a moment of weakness like that.”

 

Ten scoffs. “I’m not weak.”

 

Kun has to laugh at that. His eyes open with mirth, and he’s met with that same loving gaze. It’s intense and raw and it knocks Kun’s breath away. “You’re right, you’re not weak. I am, and I gave in to temptation. You broke it off with Johnny when you…when you don’t…”

 

“Fuck that, Kun,” Ten says, and his fingers grasp Kun’s jaw harshly so he’s forced to look into blazing eyes. “Johnny and I stopped hooking up because he could tell, and I could tell — because it wasn’t…it never felt like it does with you.”

 

Kun’s eyebrows furrow. “What, the sex?”

 

That surprises a giggle out of Ten, and he slaps Kun on the shoulder. “No!”

 

Kun lets out a weak laugh too, finally relaxing a little. It diffuses the air around them a bit, and Kun’s lax when Ten settles back into his arms.

 

“I’ve been doing this showbiz thing for a long time,” Ten tells him, scooting closer and resting his head on Kun’s shoulder. “I’ve never…I’ve never had a serious relationship. Hell, I’ve never had a relationship that wasn’t simply releasing sexual frustrations. So I didn’t know it could feel…”

 

Ten falters, none of the languages he’s fluent in seemingly able to describe his feelings. And Kun gets it, because he feels the exact same way.

 

“I didn’t know it could feel the way it does when I’m with you,” Ten finally whispers.

 

Kun makes a sound that’s somewhere between a squeal and a squawk — unattractive, to say the least. But Ten is still looking at him like he’s the entire world, and that’s what convinces Kun that maybe, just maybe, this is real.

 

“Kun, I’m slow in all aspects of my life, you know that. I don’t like to rush and I take my time with everything,” Ten tells him. “Apparently that applies to figuring out…feelings. Because I have them—feelings—for you.”

 

Kun can’t breathe, can’t think, and Ten is so close, so warm and soft and familiar next to him—

 

“You sure this isn’t just because I give good dick?” He hears himself murmur, dazed.

 

“Kun!” Ten shrieks, laughing, his eyes widening before curving into that beautiful eye smile that Kun loves.

 

And that’s enough to ground Kun, bring him down from the chaos of his mind and back into Ten’s arms.

 

“Okay,” Kun says, and there’s a level of finality and acceptance.

 

Ten must hear it, because he takes a sharp breath in. “Okay?”

 

Kun doesn’t reply, tugs on Ten until they’re a breath away. This close, Kun can see the nervousness and the anticipation in Ten’s eyes, but more than that, he sees a familiar love. And it’s that love that he focuses on as he brings Ten fully into his lap, winding one hand under the nape of his neck and the other around his waist.

 

“Okay?” This time, Kun’s asking.

 

“Okay,” Ten immediately answers.

 

Kun lowers his face to Ten’s in a tentative motion. It’s slow, sweet, intimate — he sees Ten flutter his eyes closed, feels Ten’s fingers grip into onto his bicep. When their lips finally meet, a soft sigh falls from Ten and his hand relaxes as it finds home around Kun’s neck. Unlike every other kiss they’ve shared, this one is not rushed and there’s no build up to something else. It’s just —sweet, familiar. It’s Ten.

 

“God, I’ve missed you,” Kun mumbles against Ten’s lips.

 

“Me too,” Ten agrees, nibbling on Kun’s lower lip before he swipes his tongue across it. Kun takes the chance to curl his tongue around Ten’s, and soon they’re engaged in a playful dance.

 

“You’re sure about this…about me?” Kun asks, pulling away. He still can’t believe it.

 

Ten groans, resting his forehead against Kun’s as he catches his breath. “Qian Kun, do you know how amazing you are?” He pauses, taking a second to pull away and give Kun a sure smile. “Maybe not yet, but I’m going to change that. I’m going to make you see yourself like I do. Because then you’ll know — how perfect you are. Perfect for me.”

 

Kun’s heart flutters, and he feels giddy, like a teenager in love. He’s just about to lean in to kiss Ten again when—

 

“Do you think they’re fucking in my room?” Guanheng’s very loud whisper sounds against the door.

 

Kun and Ten exchange amused glances as they hear a few hushes and hisses. Ten’s eyes narrow as the right side of his lips quirk up — and Kun knows that expression, so he just sits back, hands on Ten’s waist, and waits for the impending mess.

 

Ten moans, loud and exaggerated, and Kun dissolves into a fit of surprised giggles. Ten lets out another moan, this time even louder and an octave higher. He grins, satisfied, and sends Kun a wink.

 

There’s some pushing and shoving outside the door, before Sicheng’s voice commands the kids away. Bless Dong Sicheng.

 

“You’re insane,” Kun tells Ten, still laughing.

 

Ten hums, but the mischievous expression is gone, replaced by hooded eyes and a slow swipe of tongue across red lips — and oh, Kun knows that expression too.

 

“Should we take up Hendery’s suggestion?” Ten asks, placing both hands on Kun’s shoulders as he straddles him fully.

 

“You’re insane,” Kun simply repeats as he tugs Ten close, laughs bubbling on both their lips as they meet.