Characters: Donghae, Kyuhyun
Disclaimer: I do not own Super Junior.
Warning: attempts at angst and dry humor?
Summary: I’m bad at these.
A/N: my first story, so criticisms are helpful. :] I’ve been told by many that my writing is stiff and formal. Consider yourself warned. ^^
“Kyuhyun!” Siwon shouted from down the hallway.
Looking up from his spot on the floor, Kyuhyun put an index finger to his lips, indicating that I should keep quiet. Then he ran towards the bathroom that we shared. From my position on the bed, I could see that he didn’t bother to close the bathroom door.
A few seconds after Kyuhyun went to hide, Siwon entered the spacious hotel room that Kyuhyun and I shared, looking as if he could decapitate someone with his bare hands. “Donghae, have you seen Kyuhyun?” he asked in a strangled voice while he furiously searched our room. He checked inside the closet, under the beds, and on the balcony. He stuck his head in the bathroom but immediately withdrew it. Admitting defeat, he sat at the foot of my bed, his back hunched while his fingers massaged his temples. He looked quite pathetic actually, unlike his usual suave and confident self.
I patted his back sympathetically. We have only been in China for a week, and he already showed signs of breaking down. Not that China wasn’t great. It was. It had kung fu, pandas, and that damn Great Wall. It was just that something’s wrong here. I couldn’t quite place my finger on it; it slipped away like sand fisted in my hands. Also, Kyuhyun playing tricks on him didn’t help either.
Sometimes, when the sky was particularly cloudy or the sun was too bright, I would wonder if Kyuhyun was just cruel. He played several tricks on Siwon before, some of them involving salt, feathers, and shaving cream. I mentally slapped myself for thinking badly of my donsaeng. Kyuhyun wasn’t cruel, but he wasn’t nice either. Well, just to some people.
“Hankyung and I are going to buy some stuff,” Siwon explained as he stood up. “Do you want anything?”
“Watermelon please,” I requested. “For Kyuhyun.” His fingers twitched a little when I added that last bit. However, he just nodded and left.
Once Siwon was gone, Kyuhyun came out of the bathroom, grinning like an idiot. “You shouldn’t have done that,” I admonished him.
“You don’t even know what I did,” he stated matter-of-factly.
“So what did you do?” I wasn’t curious or anything; his jokes were too childish for me anyway.
“I painted his toenails while he was sleeping.”
“Extra Strength Crimson Desire,” he answered with a throaty chuckle.
“That’s lame,” I said, watching him for his reaction.
“No,” he dismissed with a wave of his hand. “It’s [i]tame[/i].” He went over to his suitcase, which was neatly resting beside the dresser. I followed suit of course. Not that I was intrigued or anything. Nope. Not me. Opening his suitcase, he pulled out a box of saran wrap. “This is the real fun.”
I immediately snatched the box from him and held it behind my back. “I’m not going to let you do whatever it is that you are going to do.”
But did he listen? No.
Did I expect better of him? No.
“Donghae, please give it back.” He held out his right hand. “Besides, it’s not like I’m putting anyone’s life in danger.” I looked at him, his arm stretched out in front of him, waiting patiently for me. His eyes were unreadable, and that made me hesitate for a second.
I relented, and his face stretched into a gargoyle-like grin. “You are the best hyung in the world!” he exclaimed as he seized the saran wrap from me and exited our room.
With nothing to do, I stepped out onto the balcony, which gave me a view of the city. It was nearly eleven at night, but it was somehow bright. The congested city perpetually exhaled a stale odor of sewage and sweat, blanketing itself with a thick sense of familiarity. The lights from advertisement boards and homes illuminated the horizon line with a strange bronze glow that never reached the moon, which attempted to shed its silver rays over the city through the murky clouds that covered its spotted face. There were no stars out tonight; they couldn’t compete with the city’s fuming glares. Did Confucius imagine that his precious China, with its sweeping hills and rice paddies, would one day have steel skyscrapers and onyx roads that scratched its own face?
Crossing my arms, I leaned towards the edge. I inhaled deeply, but the air only burned my lungs, leaving me gasping and dry-heaving over the balcony. After ten seconds, I breathed easily again and realized that someone was massaging my back.
“Are you alright?” Kyuhyun inquired, concern detectable in his voice. I didn’t realize that he already returned from his little adventure. How long was he standing there? His face was still unreadable; there was something else beneath the worry that he painted on his face. I nodded an affirmative, which garnered me a grim smile. “Go inside. This air isn’t good for you.” With that, he pulled me inside and shut the sliding glass doors.
I was led to my bed; I sat on the edge of the maroon down blanket, facing Kyuhyun. He sat on the edge of his side as well, but his limbs, unlike mine, were folded like paper fans in front of him. It was strange to see him so graceful, like a blue heron standing in a swamp. Usually he looked like Bambi learning how to walk, especially when he danced. He wasn’t a good dancer, not even mediocre. I recalled a time when he first joined Super Junior and debuted with the song “U.” His appendages seemed too long for him to control. I laughed at him then, and I must have laughed now because he spoke, pulling me out of my reverie.
“What are you laughing about?” he inquired softly.
I shook my head. “You.”
His eyebrows rose slightly, but he didn’t ask me to explain. I didn’t feel like it either; I didn’t think he would have understood. Several minutes passed in awkward silence. At least, I assumed that it was in minutes and not hours since Einstein was right about relativity.
Kyuhyun still didn’t move, and I shook beneath his unrelenting gaze. He was thinking about me, that I was certain, but as to what types of thoughts, I wasn’t so sure. Folding my legs to mirror his, I lifted my eyes to meet his gaze.
His chocolate-colored eyes met mine, and I imagined that for an instant, we saw each other for the person that we were. He saw me, and I saw him.
I glimpsed white light, the kind that people tell you not to walk towards. I glimpsed a passing shadow, gliding in a directionless manner through the light. And I felt pain. Startled, I broke contact. Looking at Kyuhyun once again, I noticed that he was breathing heavily.
The pain I felt wasn’t a sharp one, but a dull undulating one that washes over you in small waves.
If I was imagining this, then it was alright. If I wasn’t, well…it wasn’t so good.
Quickly closing the three-foot space between us, I knelt before him and patted his knee with my hand. “Do you want something to drink?”
Shaking his head, he gently removed my hand from his knee, which I hadn’t realized was still resting there. He wasn’t looking at me.
If I wasn’t imagining it, then what did he see?
I heard the doorknob turning and immediately stood up, turning to face the visitor. Hankyung smiled softly at me and gave me a bag of watermelon. “Don’t stay up too late,” he advised. “We have a busy schedule tomorrow.”
“Thank you,” Kyuhyun and I stated in unison.
After Hankyung left, Kyuhyun and I settled on the carpeted floor, sharing the watermelon pieces. “So how come Siwon never found you earlier?” I asked him as I placed a piece of the melon in my mouth, attempting to dissipate the awkwardness from before.
“I hid in the bathtub,” he explained, looking at me with clouded eyes. “He never bothered to check carefully.”
It was difficult to imagine that he could fit all 180 centimeters of him in that porcelain tub. “What did you do with the saran wrap?”
He grinned at me mischievously. “That’s for me to know and for you to find out.”
At that instant, we heard Siwon screaming Kyuhyun’s name from down the hallway.