Jongin was standing at Kyungsoo's door step, nervously fiddling with the plastic bag in his hands. The bag was printed with the flashy brand colours of the local speciality market for electronic devices and contained a spanking new set of loudspeakers. Jongin had purchased them earlier that day, in yet another attempt to regain Kyungsoo's goodwill.
During the last two weeks, Kyungsoo had ignored Jongin quite thoroughly, strictly refusing to even talk to the latter and only hanging out with Chanyeol after school. Jongin was sure that if he hadn't known that their tall friend was already head over heels for this Baekhyun guy, he would've probably gone crazy with jealousy. It was a strange feeling to suddenly be robbed of this absolute attention that Kyungsoo usually only reserved for him, but was now giving to Chanyeol instead. To be kept at such distance from Kyungsoo was new for Jongin and he barely had any idea on how to handle it. With every day that passed in this fashion, Jongin realised that he was missing his best friend more and more.
He knew that the reason for this silence had something to do with what had happened at the photo shoot. Jongin very soon afterwards had felt bad about how the situation had escalated. (It seemed that he even had made Kyungsoo cry!?) Guiltily, he had gone to the music shop to buy several CDs and give them to Kyungsoo to show that he was sorry. However, so far, Jongin had exasperatedly found all of them chucked back into his own mailbox, wrapping untouched and without even so much as a note. Jongin was stumped. He knew that Kyungsoo had wanted to own these records for a while, so why did he reject them? Jongin now found himself at his wits' end. Maybe the loudspeakers would finally change the older boy's mind and make him stop being so grouchy...
Suddenly, the door in front of him opened and Jongin was jerked out of his thoughts. As soon as Kyungsoo saw who was standing outside, he rolled his eyes and made to throw the door shut again without uttering a single word, but Jongin hastily placed his foot in the gap to stop the door from closing.
“Wait! Kyungsoo! I wanted to give you–”
“Not interested,” Kyungsoo cut him off. Angrily, he pressed against the wooden door, trying to shut it in spite of Jongin's foot still blocking it.
“No, listen, it's a brand new–” the younger boy started again, raising the colourful plastic bag in the air.
“I said I don't want it, Jongin.” His tone was even colder now. Kyungsoo frowned and heaved a big sigh as if what he was about to say wasn't an easy task. Finally, he looked Jongin straight in the eyes and his voice turned icy:
“When will you understand that I am not corruptible?”
And with that, he kicked Jongin's foot away and swiftly shut the door right into his startled face.
The loud bass was thumping through the huge and luxuriously furnished mansion, animating the countless guests of the house party to move to the music on one of the several available spaces that served as makeshift dance floors. Not even the buzzing sound of the numerous conversations could drown it out and it was therefore still audible outside by the pool side, where Jongin was currently slumped on a beach chair, half-empty cocktail drink clutched in his hand. He wasn't sure if the rhythmic, painful thudding in his head came from the beat or from the alcohol coursing through his veins. Probably both.
Staring at the endless, starry sky above him, Jongin recapitulated how Luhan had persuaded him to join him and the others to one of these high-class house parties. Jongin didn't have a clue who this stately home even belonged to, but in lack of anything better to do, he had agreed to tag along. So Jongin had danced and drunk and danced some more, desperately trying to erase Kyungsoo's haunting cold eyes from his memory, but to no avail. On the contrary, when he had decided to go outside for a few gulps of fresh air, and sat down next to a few girls clad in barely more than bikinis, striking up a slightly slurred conversation with them, without intending to, he had started rambling incoherently about his best friend. At first, the girls had tried to be polite, listening to his spouting or at least pretending to. However, after he'd babbled random facts about Kyungsoo for over ten minutes non-stop, they had exchanged confused and annoyed looks. As soon as Jongin took a deep breath to tell yet another anecdote from his childhood with Kyungsoo, the girls hurriedly stood up, muttered a few excuses and fled.
Now Jongin was left alone again. He briefly considered beginning a search for his friends, but quickly discarded the idea again. He didn't quite feel like combing through the entire mansion and spacious garden at the moment.
He wondered what Kyungsoo was doing right now...
From the corner of his eye, Jongin saw a person sit down on one of the beach chairs next to his.
“Hey,” an unfamiliar voice greeted him.
Jongin turned his still aching head, squinting at the other. “Huh? Who...?”
The stranger smiled at him. “Me?” he said in a friendly tone and pointed at himself. “Well, have you heard of... SHINee?”
Jongin suddenly recognised the guy and his eyes widened in shock. He scrambled up into a more upright sitting position. “Wait, wait, wait, what?!” he stammered, baffled. “Are you really...?!”
The guy chuckled, “Yes, I'm Lee Taemin.” He winked. “Nice to meet you.”
Jongin gaped at him for a second, before he blurted the first thing that came to his mind: “Oh my god, my best friend is a huge SHINee fan.”
Taemin smirked. “Oh yeah? That's nice... and what about you?” While speaking, he extended his hand and grabbed Jongin's wrist. Standing up, Taemin pulled the other up to his feet as well.
“I guess I'm a fan, too... But Kyungsoo really loves your music, he bought all your records,” Jongin mumbled as Taemin guided him purposefully through the bustle by his wrist, towards the bar. He placed Jongin on one of the couches close by.
“Wait here for me, I'll get you something to drink,” Taemin said.
“But I still have...” Jongin started and weakly raised the glass in his other hand, but Taemin was already out of sight. He sighed and slumped down on the cushions, slurping the rest of the drink in his hands. When he finished, Jongin turned around to the group of party guests perched at the other end of the long couch. His vision was beginning to get a bit blurry again and for some reason he felt the strong urge to tell them about that time in middle school when Kyungsoo played the role of a chicken in drama class. He was so busy describing the ridiculous feathery costume Kyungsoo had had to wear back then in minute detail, that he didn't notice the looks of utter boredom on the faces of his audience. They were finally released when suddenly, Taemin reappeared behind him, carrying two impressively coloured drinks in his hands, thus averting Jongin's attention away from the other guests.
“Here, this is for you,” Taemin said and handed one of the drinks to Jongin.
“Ah, perfect, I'm parched!” Jongin exclaimed and immediately gulped down a few sips.
However, Taemin furrowed his eyebrows and quickly pulled Jongin's drink out of his hands again. “Don't drink everything now, stupid!” he said as he gave the cup back to him. It almost sounded as if he was scolding him.
Jongin pouted for a moment, before he recognised the song which had just started to play over the numerous speakers in the house. His eyes, even though already getting a bit unfocused, lit up. “That's it!” he cried out excitedly, unaware of the further confused looks he was receiving from the people around, as he ran towards the nearest dance floor. “Taemin! That's the song!” he called over to the stunned Taemin. “The one of which I taught Kyungsoo the dance back when we were like ten or something! Wait, I think it went like this...” He started to move, trying to remember the steps of the choreography. Jongin was so caught up in his drunken euphoria of being able to remember most of the dance, that he didn't even notice how the drink he'd just got from Taemin sloshed about. It caused the other guests on the dance floor besides him to widen the circle around him even more, wearing various expressions of disgust.
Before the song had even reached its second chorus, Taemin quickly grabbed Jongin by the arm again and pulled him away from the crowd. Taemin briefly threw a sullen glance back over his shoulder at the little puddles of the spilt drink on the dance floor, before they left the room into the hallway. Taemin walked up the stairs to the upper floor, the quietly babbling, inebriated Jongin in tow. He steered Jongin into the next empty guest room, followed him inside and slammed the door shut behind himself. With this banging sound, abrupt silence filled the grey darkness of the room. Just when one strained their ears, the faint thumping of the music downstairs could still be heard. The only source of light came from outside, from the flickering reflections of the pool's bright underwater illumination.
Jongin suddenly felt very dizzy. Clutching his head and groaning, he staggered towards one of the high windows. He reached for the window sill and held on to it in order to regain his faltering sense of balance.
“What's wrong?” he heard Taemin ask quietly from behind.
Jongin scrunched his nose. “I... I don't know... I suddenly feel... a bit dizzy...” He blinked several times to dispel the weird blots which suddenly impaired his vision.
“Oh, is that so?” Taemin said, an eerie calm to his voice. He gently took Jongin's wrist again and slowly pulled him the few steps over to the nearby bed. Still unsteady on his legs, Jongin flopped down on the edge of the bed. Sitting down like this, it made him immediately feel a bit better. The room around him stopped spinning, but the blots kept dancing before his eyes. Jongin started rubbing them with his fingertips. He could feel the mattress dip next to him as Taemin sat down on the bed, too. Jongin stopped rubbing his eyes but left them shut and sighed.
“Dude, I feel weird,” he muttered and furrowed his brows.
Taemin placed a hand on Jongin's shoulder and began to gently press down, nudging the younger boy to stretch out his back on the bed. “Lie down,” Taemin murmured close to Jongin's ear. “It'll help with the dizziness...”
Still with his eyes closed, Jongin just lay on his back, letting his befuddled mind wander a bit. Rustling sounds were audible from somewhere in the otherwise quiet room.
“You know,” Jongin started after a few minutes, putting his forearm over his closed eyes. If only the painful thumping in his skull would stop... “Kyungsoo won't believe me I met the real Taemin,” he went on, tongue a bit heavy. “I mean, the real Lee Taemin from SHINee. He'll be so envious... Hey, have I told you about my best friend Kyungsoo? He's very cute. Like, exceptionally cute... His eyes and his smile... But he can be very scary, too, if he wants to. Man, he's so cool and handsome... and sassy and smart... sometimes even sexy, though I'm not sure if he's always aware of it. But this makes him even more adorable, you know? And he can sing like an angel sent from heaven...” Jongin rambled before heaving a big sigh. “But we had a fight the other day... And can you believe that after just three days I already miss him so much,” he whined. Then he sighed again, defeated. “I think I might be really... in love with Kyungsoo,” Jongin concluded in a tiny voice.
“Okay, you know what, screw this!” he suddenly heard Taemin's annoyed voice from... above him?
Jongin quickly pulled his arm away and snapped his eyes open. He jumped in shock when he saw Taemin's face hovering only a few hand's widths above his own.
“What?!” Jongin hurriedly scrambled backwards to get away from the other, who was perched on the bed on all fours. “What's going on?!”
“I can't do this if you honestly won't shut up about this guy!” Taemin said with a profound scowl and leaned back again to sit on his heels.
“Can't do what?” Jongin was so confused.
Taemin gave him an incredulous look. “Well, what do you think?”
Jongin's eyes widened when he noticed with another flinch that Taemin was – apart from a pair of boxer shorts – not wearing clothes anymore.
“Wait, what... What are you trying to... Oh my god, don't tell me you were...” Jongin stammered as realisation began to dawn on him. He gasped and jumped to his feet. Thankfully his dizziness from before was gone... Wait, now it made sense!
“You tried to roofie me!” Jongin yelled, almost hysterical, pointing at Taemin accusingly.
However, the other just shrugged, unfazed. “Yeah, well, I tried. But then you decided to spill the damn drink.”
“But, but that's illegal!”
“And so is underage drinking?” Taemin just raised an eyebrow.
Jongin gaped at him in disbelief for a minute before he pulled himself together. “Anyway! I will not, I repeat, I will not do anything with you,” he yelled and shook his head vehemently. “Not here, not now. Not ever! Gosh, you're so gross...”
He had reached the door when Taemin called after him, “Oh yeah? You were the one who killed the mood anyway, Jonghyun!”
Jongin furiously ripped the door open, but stopped on its step to turn around to a sour looking Taemin once again. “My name is Jongin, you asshole,” he spat. “But it is Kai to you anyway!”
Then he turned around and dashed off.
The seventeenth pebble finally hit the glass of the window pane. Jongin was panting in the nightly darkness in front of Kyungsoo's house. The next street lamp shone roughly ten metres away down the silent street, spending just enough light for Jongin to be able to detect the tiny stones lying on the pavement which he could use as projectiles.
Despite it being summer, the air felt chilly on Jongin's heated skin as he stood there in front of the fence isolating him from the neatly kept front yard beyond. He'd run all the way from the nearest bigger night bus stop since the trains had stopped running already hours ago. Moreover, aiming correctly for the window which he knew to be the one of Kyungsoo's room (and only this window! He didn't want to think of what would happen if he roused Kyungsoo's parents from their sleep), had turned out to be quite more difficult than he had expected. He stared up at the window, waiting for a response. He winced when nothing stirred behind the drawn curtains even after five minutes. Sighing, Jongin bent down to pick up another pebble.
It took him a least another five or six throws until he managed to hit the glass once again. Unfortunately, this stone had been a slightly bigger one, as he had already run out of the tinier stones on the pavement, so the clanging noise resounded louder than he had intended. He prayed that he didn't actually damage the glass...
The curtains moved and Jongin saw one single eye peeking through the crack between them. Jongin waved his hand awkwardly. Kyungsoo recognised him and yanked the curtains abruptly to the sides, wearing an expression that looked like a mix of annoyance, curiosity, confusion and a bit of concern, too.
Jongin sent a sheepish smile and a shrug.
Kyungsoo shrugged as well, shaking his head and raising one eyebrow. What is it?
Jongin pointed first at himself and then at Kyungsoo, before awkwardly forming a snout with his fingers and opening and closing it repeatedly. We need to talk... He pointed at the entrance door. Can you come downstairs?
Kyungsoo rolled his eyes and Jongin feared he would get rejected once again. However, the older boy then nodded and signalled Jongin to come to the door step, before disappearing from the window. Unable to suppress a grin of relief, Jongin complied.
“Are you crazy? Do you have any idea how late it is?” were Kyungsoo's whispered greeting words when he opened the door.
Jongin made a guilty face. “I know, I'm sorry...” He took a deep breath of courage before he continued in a low voice, “But I realised what an idiot I've been ever since I started this modelling crap. And I came to tell you that I am through with it, starting right now.”
Kyungsoo just gaped at him incredulously, so Jongin reached for his pocket and pulled out his phone. He swiftly unlocked the screen and pressed a few buttons. Then, he held the screen up in front of Kyungsoo's face and the older boy had to squint at the sudden brightness.
Jongin chuckled at the cutely scrunched up expression of the other. He retrieved the device a bit. “Sorry... Look here, I just want to show you: I'm done. I'm officially deleting the scheduling app of the model agency,” he explained. And with a flourish, he pressed the last button that made the application vanish from his phone. Jongin beamed at the older boy proudly.
However, Kyungsoo still stared at him, puzzled and apparently speechless for a minute. “But– But I thought you had so much fun doing it?” he finally said.
Jongin smiled. “Well, nothing is much fun to me if I can't share it with you, Kyungsoo. What's the use of having thousands of friends, when they're all fake? What is all the fame in the world if I can't share it with my very best and most special friend?” The sincerity of his words coloured his own cheeks pink and Jongin was glad that the street lamp's light didn't quite reach them on the doorstep.
However, despite the darkness, he could make out the row of straight white teeth in front of him, indicating Kyungsoo's wide smile. “Took you long enough, Jongin,” he said cheekily, but the warmth in his tone was still evident.
During the following moment of silence, Jongin contemplated if he should reach out and take Kyungsoo's hand, but before he could even work up the courage, Kyungsoo spoke again.
“Hey, have you heard about how Chanyeol asked Baekhyun out in front of the entire school?”
“What?! No!” Jongin exclaimed in genuine surprise and Kyungsoo had to hastily gesticulate to him to keep his voice low. Quieter, the younger boy continued, “Woah, how brave of him! And what did Baekhyun reply? Did he accept?!”
Kyungsoo nodded but then he turned around, motioning for Jongin to follow him inside. “Come on in, I'll tell you everything,” he whispered. “So last week, Chanyeol brought his guitar to school and...”
As Jongin listened to his best friend's whispered account, he couldn't help the content feeling of being finally back where he belonged.
“Who's your favourite SHINee member again, Soo?”
“Ah, okay, good.”
- this fic was heavily inspired by two songs of simple plan: “freaking me out” & “loser of the year”; the first song is for kyungsoo's pov and the second for jongin's. (i highly recommend that u go and listen to them both, after all because they're simply brilliant songs hehe)
- i would like to cordially apologise to all kris-, luhan-, jessica-, tao- and taemin-stans!!!!!! pls don't take it personally that i made them the villainous bitch-squad... i'd like to assure u that i love all those idols irl; esp lulu is my babe T^T it pained me to write them in such a mean way...
- this fic is dedicated to my honeybun-sugarplum named yuku, in return for giving me that superstylish exo/chanyeol phone case for xmas! <3 sorry that ur gift comes six months late hahaha but you know me... orz also sry again for not using any of ur prompts besides “kaisoo pls” lmao... i hope u still liked it tho??
- further dedications as always to cedric and eva because I LOVE U BOTH WITH ALL MY KOKORO <33
- credit for the title also goes to cedric! he's a genius with them
- and if you, dear reader, have read this far, please leave a comment and tell me what you think about my story. i'm always happy about feedback ^_^ Thank you~