I promise (thisismylastlie) wrote,
I promise
thisismylastlie

All At Once (i/iii)

all at once
suchen (junmyeon/jongdae). past!various.
pg-13.
au, romance, drama, slice of life.
threeshot/19,500w total.


Jongdae is in trouble, in thought, and in love. (Fortunately, not all at once.)


-
Warning/s: Brief mentions of depression and schizophrenia in one of the characters.
A/N: Written for criticalcapture, my first and last fic exchange :') It was a fun experience and I'm glad I tried it out. Much love to starsthatlast for putting up with me as I created this beast, and the critcap mods for hosting and also putting up with my needs for extensions ;o;



ALL AT ONCE

(i)
.trouble


Jongdae is fine. His boyfriend of two years just broke up with him, and he lost his job at the end of the month, and sure, the bills are starting to pile up in his nightstand drawer, but he's fine, really. He still laughs, still sings in the shower, still spends countless hours watching anime on his laptop while stuffing his face with instant ramen. Nothing's really changed.

At least, that's what he tells Baekhyun when the older insists on dragging him out for pity ice cream and spending an entire afternoon on trying to psychoanalyze his best friend's mental state.

"I don't know what you're so worried about," Jongdae says through a mouthful of vanilla ice cream as he goes to take another spoonful. "Do I look like I'm in mourning right now?" He grins after that, just to make a point.

Baekhyun rolls his eyes, leaning over to take a spoonful of Jongdae's ice cream. Whenever Baekhyun buys Jongdae food, he's really just buying himself food, because Baekhyun ends up eating half of whatever Jongdae orders. "No, and that's why I'm worried. The least you could do is lock yourself up and watch shitty horror movies and act like a human being."

"I don't have the time for my own pity party," Jongdae replies, snorting at the idea. "I need to find a new job before Jongin finds out." If his brother learns that Jongdae lost his job, he'll start working at that awful cleaners place again and won't be home until after nine. Jongdae already has his own life to worry about; he doesn’t want to spend any more time worrying about his brother’s too.

"Why don't you just tell him?" Baekhyun asks with a sigh. He’s been sighing a lot lately, Jongdae notes. "He's not a kid anymore. There's no need to keep secrets from him."

"There's always a need to keep secrets from everyone," Jongdae corrects matter-of-factly as he takes another bite of ice cream. Baekhyun gives him a disapproving look, bottom lip jutting out in a pout of sorts. Jongdae thinks it looks disgusting on him.

"Even family?"

"Especially family.”

The older shakes his head, unsatisfied with Jongdae's answer. "You really need to trust people, Jongdae. It’s not healthy keeping that all bottled up inside of you.”

"Funny. That's what Yixing said, too."

Baekhyun seems more uncomfortable than Jongdae at the mention of Yixing's name. "Oh. Sorry." He casts his eyes downwards, and Jongdae wonders if it's appropriate to be amused, because shouldn't that be his line?

"Don't be," he says instead. "You meant well.”

"So why don't you take my advice then?" Baekhyun asks, eyebrows furrowed. This isn't exactly the first time they've had a conversation about this, but the results always seem to be the same anyway.

"Because I don't know any other way," Jongdae admits, and he almost wishes he didn’t because Baekhyun’s eyes soften next, and Jongdae can’t stand the pity in them. But he trusts Baekhyun, trusts him more than anyone else, and he knows Baekhyun only has the best intentions.

Which is why Jongdae spares him the details of how he broke down in the middle of the night two days after Yixing left, of how he rolled himself up to make himself as small as he felt, of how he called Yixing at least ten times, hanging up before the first ring could get through every single time. He'd rather hear Baekhyun gush on about his 'hot new manager' than tell him how alone he's felt for the past two weeks.

Jongdae knows Baekhyun means well, but Jongdae means even better. He just wants to make sure everyone's okay, even if he's not.

-

It's Jongin who convinces Jongdae to get out of the apartment after spending days searching for available jobs online and responding to countless help wanted advertisements. Although Jongdae never told Jongin about the whole him-being-fired problem, he knows the younger already figured it out. The kid's smart, Jongdae will give him that.

"You are not wearing that," is the first thing his brother says when he steps out of his room in a t-shirt and old jeans.

"I'm just going to Baekhyun's," Jongdae replies with a shrug, looking for his wallet. He makes his way over to the kitchen counter, where he's sure he put it earlier.

"No, you're not."

Jongdae raises an eyebrow as he turns to the younger. "Where exactly am I going then?" he asks, just to humor his brother.

“There’s a new club downtown. It just opened last week, and guess who got you in?”

Jongdae narrows his eyes at that. “How do you know anything about clubs?”

Ignoring his brother, Jongin continues, “I couldn’t get you a plus one though, so you’re going to have to go alone. “

“Who do you know that works at a club?” Jongdae continues, eyebrows furrowed as he goes through Jongin’s list of friends who are all underage. Except for... “It was Donghae, wasn’t it? I should’ve known you’d meet bad influences at that pet shelter. He’s too old for you!”

“Donghae’s a nice guy,” Jongin defends.

“I’m pretty sure he’s on at least five different drugs,” Jongdae deadpans. “None of them prescribed either, mind you.”

Jongin rolls his eyes. “Anyway, Donghae’s boyfriend actually owns the club. They’ve been packed apparently, so be happy I got you in. I hear they even had to put Siwon, the actor, on the wait list.”

“That’s impressive, but I still don’t like you hanging around older men.” Jongdae frowns, hoping Donghae hasn’t exposed his brother to anything scandalous. After all, being the boyfriend of a club owner must bring around some crazy experiences, none of which Jongdae wants influencing Jongin.

“I hang out with you and Baekhyun all the time,” Jongin points out.

“You know what I mean,” Jongdae says.

“Duh. I’m not stupid, hyung,” Jongin sighs, and he sounds so tired that it makes Jongdae frown. Someone so young shouldn’t have a sigh so heavy.

“I know you’re not. I’m just concerned is all. I want you to have a life, you know. Staying cooped up in your room, staring at a laptop screen for hours isn’t healthy for anyone.”

Jongdae sighs. Jongin has a point; for a kid, he often does. “I guess.”

“I know,” Jongin hums, pushing his brother back into his room. “Now go change into something that’ll have guys buying drinks for you.”

Jongdae feels he should be concerned that his brother wants him to whore himself out. One night wouldn’t hurt, I guess, he thinks as he pulls out his club attire.

-


The club is packed, and Jongdae doesn’t even know where to begin. The bar seems like a good place, though; everything is better when you have alcohol in your system, that much Jongdae has learned with Baekhyun on their nights out.

He takes his time on his first beer, because he doesn’t have much money on him. His eyes roam the club, admiring all the sweaty bodies merging into one on the dance floor as they forget about everything else and focus on the music and their moves. Jongdae wishes he could be as carefree, but it’s going to take more than one drink and anything else he can afford to get there.

Luckily, his prayers seemed to be answered as a man slides in beside him. He looks young and pretty for a man, with light-colored hair and almost effeminate features, but the vibe he gives off is anything but innocent like his looks.

“Come here often?” the stranger asks, yelling to be heard over the music.

It’s an awful pick-up line, but beggars can’t be choosers, so Jongdae replies, “No, but I should.”

The man grins, waving over the bartender, eyes never leaving Jongdae. “Why? Like what you see?”

“You can say that.”

It’s all too easy after that, like riding a bike down a hill. This man – Luhan, apparently – has enough money to spare, if his expensive watch and clothes didn’t already scream that. He buys all of Jongdae’s drinks without hesitation, and it’s not long after that Luhan has Jongdae in his lap, sucking on his jaw as Jongdae shamelessly moans.

As things start to heat up and Jongdae’s pants feel tighter, a hot breath in his ear murmurs, “Should we take this somewhere more private, or is voyeurism your thing?”

Jongdae laughs despite himself. It’s the type of line he would’ve used back in college, and for reasons he cannot explain, Jongdae finds himself following the attractive male to the back.

When they make their way into a private room stocked with liquor that’s probably more expensive than anything Jongdae could afford, the man pulls out a familiar wrapper and Jongdae swallows subconsciously as the man pushes him backwards onto the sofa, straddling him as he starts to unbuckle his belt.

Jongdae closes his eyes and tries to convinces himself that this will be fun, that this is what he needs. He thinks he starts to believe it when he feels a warmth engulf him as everything starts to haze over.


-


Jongdae wakes up to a pounding headache and a note on the nightstand from a Luhan that reads: had to leave. let’s do this again some time. There’s a number scrawled underneath, and Jongdae doesn’t know if it’s loneliness or boredom that has him stuffing the number into his jeans’ pocket after he takes a shower, ready to leave.

He can only imagine the inevitable awkward meeting he’ll have with his brother when he has to explain why he was out all last night. It’s not like Jongin probably doesn’t know already, but still, Jongdae likes to delude himself into thinking Jongin is still the innocent seven-year-old he was when they first met.

Luckily, Jongin isn’t home when Jongdae gets back. Assuming his brother left for school, Jongdae goes straight to his room. Back to reality, he thinks as he scrolls through his e-mail for replies from any potential employers.

He barely even registers the sound of the front door being unlocked and keys jingling until there’s a knock at his door and Jongdae almost falls out of his seat. “What are you doing here?” he asks, heart racing after the fright.

“It’s Sunday,” Jongin replies, eyebrow raised. Jongdae blinks. Oh. “When did you get back in?”

“Shouldn’t I be asking you that?” Jongdae asks, and Jongin just rolls his eyes.

“I obviously just did. I went out to grab some milk,” he says, holding up the plastic bag in his hand. “Now stop avoiding the question.”

Jongdae sighs, ducking his head as he types ‘hiring jobs in seoul’ into the search bar. “I just got in, too,” he mutters.

“Glad you had fun then,” Jongin says, amusement clear in his voice. If Jongdae didn’t love his brother so much, he’d punch him in his pretty face. Actually, to hell with that, Jongdae thinks as he leans over and punches Jongin right in the gut.

Jongin staggers backwards, chuckling. “Well, if you’re getting over your hangover already, want to eat breakfast with me?”

“I guess,” Jongdae agrees, following his brother to the kitchen. “Hmm, what’s this?” he asks, pointing to a carton of banana milk. Jongin doesn’t like banana milk, nor does Jongdae.

“Oh, that’s Sehun’s. He must’ve forgotten it in my bag,” Jongin says absentmindedly as he shuffles through the pantry, looking for bowls. “Leave it. I’ll just bring it to him later.”

“Who’s Sehun?” Jongdae asks, not recognizing the name, which is unusual because he’s pretty sure he knows every single one of Jongin’s friends by now.

“He’s our new neighbor,” Jongin answers. “Moved in upstairs with his aunt to finish high school. I ran into him the other day after coming back from dance.”

“Isn’t it a little late in the year to be moving schools?”

“He didn’t move schools; he’s always lived in Seoul. But his parents got relocated to Jeonju for work, and he didn’t want to leave in the middle of his senior year, so he just moved in with his aunt to finish up the year,” Jongin explains as he takes out a box of cereal and dumps them into the bowls.

“Hmm, so he’s your age?” Jongdae asks, wondering if he should be helping his brother right now. Then again, how much help could a seventeen-year-old need with pouring cereal and milk together?

“Yeah. Sehun’s also going to Busan Arts College. At least now I’ll know somewhere there.” Jongin slides the utensil drawer out and takes two spoons before bumping it close with his hip.

Jongdae blinks, wondering if he heard that wrong. “Wait, what? Busan Arts College? What about it?”

“Well, I applied there and they accepted me,” Jongin says slowly, looking up at his brother as he pours milk into the bowls. It’s clear the guilt is starting to set in now for not telling Jongdae earlier. “And they gave me a full-ride scholarship for dance.”

Jongdae’s speechless. A full-ride scholarship for dance at an art school is something Jongin’s been dreaming of since elementary school. “Why didn’t you tell me?”

“It just slipped my mind,” Jongin admits, voice low as he plops the spoons into the bowls, eyes cast downwards. “We’ve both been so busy. I wasn’t sure when to bring it up.”

“Jongin, this is the next four years of your life. Any time would’ve been fine to bring this up.” He feels exasperated at this point. If Jongin hadn’t let it slip right now, would he have ever told Jongdae? Or would Jongdae wake up and find himself in an empty home? The thought leaves him feeling cold, hands frozen on the table, unsure what to do with them.

“I would’ve told you eventually,” Jongin says with a frown, handing Jongdae his bowl of cereal. “When things got better.”

Jongdae wants to ask, Will things ever get better? but maybe that’s too somber for a breakfast conversation. So instead he nods, face passive as his brother takes the seat beside him.

A couple of seconds pass. Jongin chews loudly, but not loud enough to fill up the silence. “You’re not mad at me, are you?” the younger finally asks, mouth full of cereal and uncertainty. Jongdae shakes his head and takes his first bite.

Jongdae’s not mad. He’s not anything at the moment, which is probably worse when he thinks about it. Which is why he tries not to, stuffing as much cereal as his mouth can hold, thinking it’s better the food choke him up than his own thoughts.

-

It’s colder today than it has been the past week, Jongdae notes as he walks up the grassy hill. He’s glad Jongin isn’t with him, or he’d make this ten times harder than it already is on Jongdae. After all, he knows the thought of death never boded well with the younger.

Glancing around, there aren’t many others at the graveyard today, not that there ever is except on holidays. It leaves Jongdae feeling alone, but during moments like these, alone is what he needs. Anyone else would be too much.

Once he arrives at the familiar spot, he places the chocolates on the tombstone before sitting, cross-legged, in front of it.

“Hi, mom and dad. Things are going okay,” he starts off, as usual.

It’s his own little getaway, coming to visit his parents once a week, sometimes every other week if he’s busy. He usually brings a snack or two to lay by their graves, along with a story to share about how Jongin has been.

“I’m good, I guess. Well, I’ve been better, but it’s fine. Jongin is good, too. He’s apparently chosen a college already. I know – I’m shocked as well. He’s going to be a dancer though, I think. I’m happy for him.”

A few minutes pass in the quiet. Jongdae doesn’t like to talk too much when he’s with his parents; there’s not much conversation to hold anyway. It’d be nice, he thinks, if there were phone lines connecting up to heaven. Maybe then he wouldn’t feel so lonely when he visits.

Eventually, time is up. He has a life to return to, although it hasn’t felt like much of a life lately. “I miss you,” he says, as always. “See you soon,” he murmurs, smiling as he stands up to leave. Brushing off his pants, sometimes he thinks he’d rather have been the one to crash their car instead.


-


“Want to get a drink?”

“Something wrong?” Baekhyun doesn’t miss a beat as he asks, concern clear even through the phone.

Jongdae looks around for a clean shirt to wear, ear pressed between his cheek and shoulder. “I just need to get out. This whole job hunt has really got me feeling like shit.”

“No luck so far?”

“Yeah.” No luck at all.

“Maybe I can ask–”

“Baek.”

It’s quiet for a moment before Baekhyun finally replies, voice soft but it sends a punch straight to Jongdae’s gut. “Yeah?”

“Thanks, but I really just want to get a drink right now.”

“Yeah, sure. I’ll be over in half an hour.”

“Bring cab fare.”

“Of course. See you.” There’s a click on the other side of the line, and Jongdae throws his phone onto his bed. He stands in the middle of the room, looking around for a moment, eyes out of focus and thoughts everywhere. Overwhelmed, he sits down and counts the specks of paint on the ceiling, the same from the very day he and Jongin decided it’d be fun to paint their own rooms for the hell of it and ended up giving up halfway through, which explains the two different wall colors in his room. It’s messy, but Jongdae doesn’t mind because its their shared mess.

After breakfast, Jongin left for dance practice and Jongdae dragged himself back to his room. He tried to be productive – search for a job, clean up, do some chores – but eventually the quiet started to kill him.

Jongdae’s not sure how long he laid there, staring at nothing but thinking of everything, but the vibrations of his phone snaps him out. Leaning over, he sees the text and walks over to the front door, opening it up with a breath of relief.

“Hey.” Baekhyun raises an eyebrow, and Jongdae knows what he’s about to say but wishes he wouldn’t.

“Hey.” Not even allowing the other to step in, Jongdae walks out and locks the door behind him. He starts to walk when he feels Baekhyun’s grip on his wrist; he wants to pull away, but he can’t.

“You ok–”

“Yeah, let’s just go.”

Baekhyun is a lot of things: talkative, teasing, troublesome, sometimes even tiresome. But he’s also patient, one trait Jongdae appreciates the most because he knows that while Baekhyun is concerned, he won’t ever push it until you’re ready to talk. Sometimes he not-so-subtly hints that he’s ready to talk, but Baekhyun would never force Jongdae into a conversation he’s not prepared to discuss.

When they arrive at the bar, Jongdae ignores Baekhyun’s eyes burning into his back as he orders a shot of vodka right off the bat.

“I don’t want to push you, but I’m a little afraid right now,” Baekhyun admits as he orders a scotch for himself, along with a glass of water. “Are you sure you’re okay?”

Jongdae just grunts as he gulps down the vodka and asks for another. The drinks keep coming, and soon Baekhyun’s too out of it to help either. After who-knows-how-long, Jongdae gets up to go to the restroom when he crashes into someone.

“Hey, you okay?” a stranger with light hair and complimenting features asks, eyes wide as he catches Jongdae before he falls over. If Jongdae weren’t with Baekhyun, he’d probably take this stranger home without hesitation, because Jongdae could use a face like that to cheer him up right now.

“‘m fine,” Jongdae mumbles, stumbling away from the stranger.

“Are you sure?” the man asks, eyebrows furrowing in concern, and Jongdae wants to pull his hair out because why is everyone asking him that? Why would he be sure? Why wouldn’t he be sure? Is anyone sure? Why should he be sure? Can’t he have a moment of uncertainty without being questioned?

“I’m sure,” Jongdae snaps, a little more forcefully than he intends. He feels bad for a moment after, but then decides he deserves to be angry.

He pulls away, staggering towards the door. The stranger follows, hesitant. “At least let me call you a cab.”

“I’m walking.”

“That doesn’t sound safe.”

Jongdae scowls, glaring at the stranger through his blurry vision. “It’s none of your business.”

“But–”

“Come on, Baekhyun!” he calls before the stranger can say anymore. He grabs a hold of the man, also dizzy and disoriented, and the two exit the bar, stumbling.

They make it to Baekhyun’s place in one piece, because he lives just around the corner. Any farther and Jongdae may have just collapsed right then and there in the street.

The sofa is as far as they can get before the two fall into each other, Baekhyun’s leg sprawled over Jongdae’s as the two lie side by side, too drunk to move. Jongdae looks over at his friend whose arm is over his eyes, too tired to say anything.

Maybe it’s the alcohol talking, or the loneliness, but Jongdae finds himself asking, “You won’t disappear, right? You’ll stay with me, right?”

"Of course. I promise," Baekhyun mumbles, moving his hand to bury his head into Jongdae's chest. "We'll be okay."

Pressing a chaste kiss to the top of Baekhyun's head, Jongdae just smiles crookedly, because he knows promises are meant to be broken. Still, if he can trust anyone, he knows it’d be Baekhyun in a heartbeat. He closes his eyes, ready to drown out everything, including himself.

They fall asleep together, Baekhyun clutching to Jongdae’s torso and snoring softly. Jongdae is the first to wake up, eyes squinting as he makes out the obnoxiously red numbers on the clock that read 4:48AM. On the nightstand, by the clock, is Baekhyun’s phone, lit up. Who is texting him at this hour? Jongdae wonders as he lets his curiosity get the best of him, leaning over to reach out and grab the phone.

He blinks. They’re from a Tao, a name not unfamiliar as it’s the only name Baekhyun even brings up these days. Tao is Baekhyun’s new manager that he won’t shut up about because the man looks ‘sinfully delicious in a suit, especially bent over a table’. The messages are short, probably replies from earlier, but the last one catches Jongdae’s attention.

from Tao
i guess you fell asleep haha hope you didnt get too drunk. just text me if you can’t come in to work tomorrow. good night, baekhyunnie


‘Baekhyunnie’?

Jongdae is torn between laughing and crying – the latter due to his hangover – because he’s never heard of anyone calling Baekhyun by a nickname. He must be a keeper, Jongdae thinks, judging by the text message and how Baekhyun, even after two months now, still talks about Tao, a new record compared to his other crushes.

Jongdae is happy for Baekhyun though. If anyone he knows deserves love the most, he knows it’s Baekhyun.


-


Jongdae thinks he must be either really desperate or really lonely to be pulling out that paper from nights ago to call Luhan up. Luhan sounds just as surprise when Jongdae explains who he is, but that surprise quickly turns into arrogance as Jongdae asks if he wants to have dinner tomorrow night.

“Sure. My place or yours?”

“I was thinking a restaurant first, but I don’t mind either.” Jongdae knows better than to kid himself with romantic ideas, especially with someone like Luhan, who has condoms stored in his jacket’s inner pocket whenever he goes out. Still, a dinner first would make Jongdae feel a lot less guilty.

Luhan apparently doesn’t mind indulging Jongdae, as he agrees to dinner and even recommends a place downtown for them to try. After settling on details, Jongdae agrees to meet him at the restaurant at seven.

The dinner goes relatively well. Luhan is on his phone most of the time, but the moments when he isn’t, he actually seems somewhat interested in what Jongdae has to say. They talk about casual topics, such as the weather and what they both do and what they went to school for and so on. When the food comes, they talk about their dishes. Jongdae wonders if he should bring up the question of the bill, but looking at Luhan’s expensive watch and shoes, he’s hoping the question answers itself.

It does. Luhan pays and they’re about to leave for Luhan’s place – Jongdae explains his situation with his brother, which Luhan scrunches his nose to afterwards – when Luhan takes a detour.

“I have to stop by some place before we head back,” Luhan explains, too busy checking his phone to catch Jongdae’s nod.

Jongdae follows Luhan to a building off the corner of the street. Its windows are dark, but the flashing neon sign in the front are welcoming as they flash “KARAOKE: GREAT FOR PARTIES AND GET-TOGETHERS”.

“You can wait here,” Luhan says, gesturing to the waiting area in the front. “I just need to talk to someone and then we can go.” Luhan disappears behind the counter without an affirmative from Jongdae, who wonders what the older needs from a karaoke place anyway.

Not too long after Luhan leaves, another man enters, head down as he reads over papers and approaches the counter. A minute passes before the man finally looks up.

“Hey, I know you – you were at the bar last Friday,” the man at the front says, eyes widening as he recognizes Jongdae. Jongdae can’t really remember the face – can’t really remember anything from that night period honestly – but he thinks the memory must not be great if this man is staring at him as if he might attack any moment.

“Uh, sure?” Jongdae answers, stuffing his hands in his pockets to fill the awkward tension.

The man chuckles, and Jongdae wonders what’s so funny and why this man manages to make laughter sound like bell chimes. “You don’t remember, do you?” he asks, and Jongdae just smiles sheepishly in response. “You were pretty drunk, so I guess I’m not surprised.”

“Sorry.” Jongdae feels compelled to apologize, because if this stranger remembers how drunk Jongdae was, it must’ve been bad. He knows he’s not the best drunk, after all.

“No, it’s fine. We all need a break every now and then,” the man laughs, and Jongdae wonders what’s so funny that he can’t remember because this man has been all smiles since they met – well, met again, he supposes. “I know I was there for a break, too.”

“I’m sure running a karaoke place brings all sorts of drama,” Jongdae replies somberly, and it’s a half-joke, half-ice-breaker because he’s really tired of being left out of the joke, plus this man’s smile really is something. Jongdae doesn’t think he’s ever seen teeth as nice as this guy’s.

“Oh, yeah. You should’ve heard the trouble Room Four was throwing down the other day; the girls couldn’t decide between Britney Spears and Miley Cyrus. It was like World War III up in there,” Junmyeon plays along, grinning as Jongdae himself starts to break out in a smile.

“That’s not even a competition.”

“I know, it’s obviously–”

“Britney–”

“Miley–”

The two look at each other before they burst out laughing. Jongdae doesn’t remember the last time he’s had so much fun just talking, and with a stranger no less.

“I’m Jongdae, by the way,” he finally introduces himself after their chuckles die down. Part of Jongdae thinks he’d like this man to become less of a stranger to him.

The man smiles; Jongdae doesn’t think he’s seen him not smiling this entire time. “Junmyeon.” Jongdae’s about to reply when Luhan re-enters, face impassive as he walks straight past Junmyeon without a greeting. Jongdae wonders if they know each other, and for some reason, he hopes they don’t.

“Let’s go,” Luhan says, nodding his head towards the door before walking out, not even looking back to see if Jongdae’s following.

“Well, Junmyeon, I gotta go,” Jongdae says, glancing at Luhan, and he wonders if he sounds as reluctant as he feels. He’d much rather stay here and talk about karaoke choices than go back with Luhan.

“Will you be back later?” Junmyeon asks, eyes never leaving Jongdae, and he sounds hopeful but maybe that’s just Jongdae’s wishful thinking.

“If you want me to,” Jongdae answers without thinking. He bites his lip, praying he doesn’t sound too desperate or flirty because he’s supposed to be here with Luhan, after all,.

Junmyeon doesn’t seem to mind though. “I want you to,” he replies, voice calm but there’s a teasing tone to it.

Jongdae doesn’t know how to respond, so he just smiles and bids Junmyeon good night before following Luhan out.

It’s a little embarrassing to admit that Junmyeon was the highlight of that night.


-


Things are starting to look up when Baekhyun calls him in the middle of the night – an action, Jongdae thinks, that is very Baekhyun-like – to tell him he got him a job interview at the office.

“It’s just a desk job, answering calls and organizing papers. Nothing special, but it’s something, right?” Baekhyun says, voice loud in his ears but Jongdae doesn’t mind.

“It’s great. Thanks, Baekhyun.” Jongdae smiles sleepily at the excitement in his best friend’s voice.

“Anything for you, Jongdae.”


Tags: fandom: exo, fic: all at once, genre: au, genre: drama, genre: romance, genre: slice of life, pairing: suho/chen
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