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younghyun stared. and stared, and stared, and stared. not creepily though—he’d never. it was out of admiration, really. admiration for junhyeok’s eyes, and his nose, and his smooth, unblemished skin too. it was also admiration for his lips (younghyun’s personal favorite attribute of junhyeok’s), that were the same soft pink-ish red color in which younghyun had come to find comfort in. and at the angle younghyun sat, he could just subtly notice junhyeok’s underbite with the way he pouted at the work on his desk (how was he ever teased for it? he looks too adorable to have been made fun of for it, in his opinion).

 

to younghyun, junhyeok was, all in all, beauty.

 

wow, he was gay. really, really gay. and for his bandmate, too.

 

(not that junhyeok didn’t notice. not that he didn’t mind, either.)

 

younghyun was snapped out of his daze when wonpil, a fellow classmate and band member, leaned over and elbowed him. “younghyun, tune down the gay, would ya? i can’t focus on my work, it’s so strong.” wonpil snickered jokingly when younghyun rolled his eyes and elbowed him back into his seat.

 

younghyun turned his attention back to his work, and continued through class until the bell rang, and met junhyeok outside the classroom.

 

“i’m surprised you got any work done.” junhyeok murmured as he switched out his books, and younghyun grasped onto his free hand. (his hand was soft and warm, despite being much smaller than younghyun’s own—he just wishes that junhyeok’s hand was actually his to hold.)

 

“what?”

 

“with your eyes on me the whole time, you mustn’t have glanced at your paper even once.” as he closed his locker, junhyeok looked at younghyun with raised eyebrows and that childish grin that the other loved, oh so much.

 

“you’re too pretty to not look at, y’know? like really, it’s killing me that i can’t kiss you.” the shorter one’s grin fell to a barely-even-there, half smile.

 

“you know i’m with heechan, younghyun.”

 

“i know. but he… you know that he… i can’t say it without seeming hateful,” which he was, don’t get him wrong, “but you know what i mean!”

 

“...i know.”

 

“then why don’t you leave him, junhyeok? you, you say you’re happy, all the time, but… i’m your best friend, i can see when things bother you, unlike other people. i can tell. please,” younghyun was practically pleading, clinging onto his bandmate’s hand.

 

the bell for the next class rang, but neither moved. junhyeok held the other’s gaze, but sighed. he leaned upward and softly kissed younghyun’s cheek, and rested his hand on the latter’s jaw.

 

“thank you for caring, but i’ll be okay. i swear on it,” junhyeok swung the hand that was intertwined with younghyun’s and gave it a soft squeeze before walking to his next class. younghyun just sighed, and turned to rush to his lesson. (this was too normal to him now.)



 

classes passed like usual; chem lab with jae, one of his bandmates;  trigonometry with sungjin, the ‘leader’ of his aforementioned band; and gym with jackson wang, who also happened to be the best young fencer from hong kong, so of course younghyun absolutely died during sports with him today. after his last period, he jogged to the main building, where junhyeok should’ve been. and sure enough, he was.

 

since younghyun had last seen him, junhyeok had put on a beige sweater that was all too big for him (the sweater actually belonged to younghyun). he had his phone out and was typing rapidly, most likely informing his mom that he would indeed be going home with younghyun today and no, she didn’t have to pick him up and could go to the store without him. but the two have been in this routine for years, so he shouldn’t really have to update her on it since she already knows (but he still does, while he waits for younghyun; it’s because it makes him look occupied and no one tries to engage in conversation with him, younghyun found out).

 

younghyun walked to junhyeok, and hugged him from behind and rested his chin on the shorter’s head.

 

“jackson totally kicked my ass in 1-on-1 sports today.”

junhyeok merely hummed in response, still tapping at his phone. “so i heard from mark. jackson was ecstatic last period because of it, apparently.”

 

younghyun grinned, planting a kiss on top of his bandmate’s head. “practice today?”

 

“nah. jae’s going somewhere with his family, i think. and dowoon’s still out of town, remember?”

 

“mm, yeah, he is, isn’t he?”

 

“yep, since tuesday. and sungjin mentioned something about staying late at the dance studio.”

 

younghyun moved and stood beside him, grasping the soft hand that was cold from the autumn weather.

 

“so, my house? we stocked up on gummy bears…,” younghyun spoke in a teasing, persuasive tone, even though he didn’t really have to ask for the other to come over anymore.

 

“of course, why do you even ask.” junhyeok put his phone in his pocket, and proceeded to walk right next to younghyun, bumping his shoulders every now and then.

 

somewhere along the walk, a conversation had been started and younghyun listened intently as junhyeok recounted a moment from his acting workshop class. apparently, junhui had been given the task of double roles, and according to hoseok, the finnish accent he had given his second character was, and he quotes, ‘so inaccurate that it sounds like he’s choking on sardines’, which lead to the rest of the class period being spent debating and researching on the dialects and accents of the regions of finland. (they had decided that the character was from the northern region and spoke with a lisp.)

 

as junhyeok talked, younghyun noticed how relaxed he sounded. the past few weeks, his friend had been seeming stressed, and hadn’t spoken with a light tone in a while. it made younghyun relieved to see him like that now, especially considering how junhyeok’s… significant other had been making him feel. he would be lying if he said the sight of his bandmate’s smile didn’t make him joyful.

 

“younghyun? why are you all smiles, huh?” junhyeok poked him in his side, leaning against him.

 

“because, you are too.” junhyeok looked away from younghyun, quiet laughter tumbling past his lips as a light pink covered his ears. the branches from the trees above them created blotched shadows along junhyeok’s face, the sunlight hitting in all the right places and causing his face to appear bright and illuminated.

 

“you’re too much of a charmer, honestly. i don’t like my face when it’s pink, you know.”

 

“but i do.”


and honestly, even if younghyun couldn’t have junhyeok as his, he’d settle for seeing him at his best, for now.