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Oct. 21st, 2015

jiqs

The Way [Kaisoo, M]

( You are about to view content that may only be appropriate for adults. )

Jun. 10th, 2015

jiqs

Broken Sky AU (Wontaek, PG)

Eyyy, not sure if any of you are familiar with Broken Sky, a really REALLY neat book series by Chris Wooding, but I was given a prompt for a ghost/living person AU.... I saw the chance and I took it!

Title: Broken Sky AU
Author: cptncharlotte
Pairing: Wontaek
Rating: PG (warnings for violence, minor character death, mentions of suicide)
Word count: 4,000ish

AO3|Tumblr|LJ

Please let me know if you liked it by leaving a comment!
jiqs

(no subject)

Wonshik didn’t like to think of himself as a person that could speak with the dead; his headspace was simply a bridge, neutral territory for two-way conversations between the living and the deceased to occur.

It wasn’t like he could just walk up to a ghost and strike up a conversation, he would try to explain. When he closed his eyes and dipped into the three smooth, opalescent, egg-shaped stones set along his spine, let the power inside of them pour outwards, he was opening a gateway. That was the power he’d been given at birth, when the spirit-stones had been set into his back as an infant.

He didn’t remember the ceremony, of course, because he was an infant; but he noticed the way others reacted to him, particularly adults, even his own parents. When he had the courage to ask about it, his mother would smooth her hands through his orange hair with a sigh, pull him close to her fragrant chest, and whisper that he was too young to know. Not yet.

He didn’t have a tutor and his parents staunchly refused to let him join the group lessons the other children had in the meadow, so Wonshik learned what he could by eavesdropping every afternoon. He crouched beside the stone wall behind the tutor’s designated seat, just close enough hear but not be seen. In this way, he learned about the ley lines, underground riverbeds through which energy currents ran; “the flow”, the teacher called it, which powered spirit-stones from deep inside the earth.

He learned about the pah’nu’kah, the ceremony in which a newborn child received their spirit-stones from the mysterious deliverer. He listened intently, the tutor’s words spinning colorful images in his mind of a mysterious figure swathed in rags cradling colorless spirit stones in their palms before placing them between the vertebrae of the newborn child, stepping back to reveal the colors that would determine the child’s power. No one knew for sure how the colors of the stones were chosen, the tutor explained one afternoon, whether the deliverer could see into the future or could sense the latent power in each baby’s soul; but each color represented a different skill and there were more variations than one could possibly imagine.

The first time Wonshik attempted to use his stones was almost the last. When his parents finally drifted to sleep, he snuck out of the hut and down to the meadow, sitting beneath a tree with nothing but an orange glowstone to see by. He closed his eyes and focused his mind on the three stones aligned with his spine, feeling the thrum of power, the humming as the flow crept up through his back, pushed from his outstretched fingertips. The flow spread through him slowly at first, but Wonshik was too relaxed-when he tried to close off his stones and found himself unable to do so, the world shifted violently around him. He felt breathless as he struggled to his feet, his stones burning in his back, crackling with power. He opened his eyes and saw the world inverted, the colors of the world reversed, and the figure of a young girl dangling from the tree branch by a rope looped around her neck. The dead girl smiled.

He screamed, scrambling away, the glowstone clutched in his hands like it was the only thing keeping him alive. He saw faces everywhere, saw the dead in various stages of awareness, blurry figures that stumbled around and occasionally looked at him as if they were confused by his presence.

Convinced that he had died, he had run and run until his legs couldn’t carry him anymore. His screams had woken some of the villagers, and they found him lying unconscious by the riverbed in the small hours of the morning.

His parents told him what they knew after he awoke, but the damage was done. No one had ever seen stones like his before, and no one knew exactly what they did. They had been warned by a village elder that the white, opalescent spirit-stones in his back could only bring misfortune, and they had heeded her warning in the best way they knew how. Reluctantly, and after much discussion with the elders, they agreed to let Wonshik join the village children for lessons.

But the day Wonshik waited for never came. As the moons rose up the following night, the sound of a choked off scream shot through the air from the other end of the village. His father appeared in his doorway, his face grim, fingers trembling as he hissed, “Hide, Wonshik. Now.

Into the closet he went, tucked away in the back corner, frightened and wondering why the whole village was screaming, why his stones were burning against his spine if he hadn’t tapped into their power. When the closet door was thrown open by an enormous figure wrapped in rags and tightly bound strips of metal, the red lens of its eye focusing on him, Wonshik screamed, letting go of all the pent-up power in his spirit-stones. He shot forward between the monster’s legs just as it stabbed the air where his chest had been moments before, rocketing out of the room and out of reach.

He tripped over his father’s mangled corpse near the door to the hut, watched his mother’s belly as it was sliced open by a second monster. But it didn’t react to him; nor did it acknowledge him when he screamed for his mother, his heart in his throat. Horrified, he scrambled back to his feet, seeing familiar faces all around him and knowing that it was because everyone he had ever known was dead.

He’d been found days later, half-mad with hunger and covered in blood and dirt. The man who found him, a broad-shouldered, big-bellied fellow named Hochi, did so by accident. Hochi had taken pity on him, gathering Wonshik’s tiny body in his great arms and carrying him all the way to a work house in Tusami City.

Wonshik had never forgotten Hochi, never forgotten the gleam of kindness and sadness in his eyes when he explained that the refugee house would give him food and shelter in exchange for work; wash laundry, clean houses, and you will be cared for, do you understand? Wonshik had just nodded, comforted by the weight of Hochi’s grip on his shoulder, relishing the comforting squeeze of his hand before Hochi waved goodbye and disappeared.

Wonshik never told the other children what his spirit-stones did, and they never asked because it was exceedingly rude to pry. He never went shirtless like the other boys his age did, afraid they would ask him questions. He never spoke, but went about his work with vigor-as if scrubbing toilets and washing laundry gave him some kind of purpose. Eventually, people began assuming he couldn’t speak at all, that he had no spirit-stones--practically unheard of, despite the incredible cost of even a single stone, most people had at least one--and even that was all right with him.

He spent many nights alone on his cot in the refugee house after the massacre, learning how to control his power by reaching out with his stones while the other children slept. He struggled to understand why he had been given the power to feel the dead if he couldn’t even find his own family on the other side.

After a while, he began crossing the bridge simply to find peace from the taunting of his peers. Wonshik the freak, they breathed when he walked by. Wonshik the reject, with no teacher or friends. Wonshik the fool, with no spirit stones and therefore no talents.

He accepted the isolation, bore it as well as he could into his adolescence, never speaking a word. He dismissed the jeers and the whispers as he passed by, repressed the hurt he felt as children who were more beautiful than he, more well-spoken and less awkward, were adopted one by one. He remained as children came and went, caring as little as he could about the years that were passing. He wanted only to earn his meals and be left alone to use his stones in peace.

~~

When Wonshik was sixteen, he thought he knew everything about his stones. He stretched out on his cot with his eyes closed, focused on finding the other side of the bridge. He watched as the world of the living faded into nothing, the color bleeding from his eyes as the world became opposite; the light became dark, blues becoming more green and although his vision was blurry he knew he had finally crossed all the way over. He flexed his toes, his fingers; felt the tingle in his stomach and the tightness behind his eyes, careful not to drain the power his three stones allowed him, but eager to test his own boundaries.

He got up from the cot and wandered outside the house, into the city street. It was mostly empty, save for a few souls wandering about. Wonshik still wasn’t sure if most of them even knew they were dead. He aimlessly kicked at blue tufts of grass, looking up at the black sky where the teal moon hung low on the horizon, a medallion cradled against the bosom of the distant hills. He sat in the courtyard beneath his favorite tree, picking thoughtfully at the glimmering flowers that grew there and minding his own business when he felt a sudden thrill down the back of his neck. Startled and scrambling to his feet, he spun around and came face-to-face with a spirit.

What are you? The spirit asked.

He’d never heard a spirit speak before. He didn’t hear it with his ears so much as it echoed in his head, the voice appearing like white-lined black letters in his mind. It was a weird feeling, uncomfortable, because it felt wrong to him.

Think of your words, and send them to me. The spirit said, their voice smooth and somehow pale with patience. Wonshik struggled for a moment, but then shrugged, lowering his eyes, unsure of how to answer the question at all. He studied the spirit for a moment instead, nervously letting his eyes travel over long limbs and slender features. They were tall, wearing white a white vest with no sleeves. From their torso and down was blurred out, like they didn’t want Wonshik to see. Black hair hung past their shoulders in thick waves that reminded Wonshik of the girls he used to play with in his village, but something very distinct and sharp about their face made Wonshik wary.

Why are you here? The spirit tried again, tilted their head down to look Wonshik in the eyes.

Wonshik frowned, a little taken aback because the face was pale but the entirety of their eyes were black, excepting one narrow white ring in the center which darted to and fro to examine Wonshik’s orange hair, the sharp slope of his nose, the youthful curve of his cheeks. He kept his eyes on the ground.

You’re alive. The spirit said, and their high, sweet voice sounded confused.

Yes. Wonshik thought the word as loudly as he could, and was surprised to find that his voice was a vibrant orange. A little startled, he shifted around awkwardly as the spirit gave what he supposed was a smile, and finally forced himself looked up into those extremely unsettling eyes.

You won’t be for long. Not if you stay here. They said, the smile dropping from their lips as their eyes darted around warily. Wonshik felt a little sick watching it, like the blackness where the spirit’s eyes were was a negative space that shouldn’t have existed. Wonshik found it extremely unsettling, but he’d also never had a lucid conversation with a spirit before. Most spirits wandered aimlessly, looking pathetic and lost; this one was intelligent.

You need to go back.

Why? He asked, perturbed.

You’re not safe here yet.

The spirit didn’t get to finish their phrase. There was something that sounded like a deep rumble, like the earth itself was heaving. The spirit’s eyes widened in panic and Wonshik’s stomach sank to his feet. He began to tremble.

With a mighty crack, the ground to Wonshik’s right ruptured, a crevice easily twice his height and deeper than he wanted to imagine forming where the earth split. For a few moments, there was silence.

Run. The spirit breathed, their hazy fingers wrapping around Wonshik’s wrist. Please, run.

Wonshik looked from the crevice to the spirit, trying to process what was happening. He’d never known the other side of the bridge to be anything but peaceful, but his heart beat unsteadily in his chest and he swallowed thickly. He stepped closer to the crack in the earth, his eyes widened with fear as he realized that it stretched for what looked like miles, ignored the way the spirit’s fingers tightened around his wrist and tried to pull him back.

Please, please just run. They whispered, but Wonshik didn’t listen. He was focusing on the shifting under the earth’s surface, the metallic rumble that grew steadily louder until there was metal shrieking in his ears.

He turned, the spirit moving with him. He ran.

As they ran from the depths of the fissure, the monsters came; the murderers of his people, the mirror-movers who had sliced into his family’s flesh and destroyed his village. The spirit grabbed his arm, yelling something that Wonshik was too frightened to understand. They were racing, running as fast as they could, and the negative landscape blurred as Wonshik was scooped into the spirit’s transparent arms with inhuman strength, his stones crackling at the direct contact. He didn’t protest-his voice was stuck in his throat, anyhow-but he watched over their shoulder as the monsters drew closer and closer in the hundreds, the thousands.

It’s a dream, child! The spirit yelled, and Wonshik hardly registered it. You have to wake up. Wake up! Please, wake up!

Nowhere is safe, he realized, and clung to the nape of the spirit, summoning all the strength he had left in his stones to snap himself back to the other side of the bridge.

He woke screaming, his entire skull consumed by fire, choking on his own blood where he’d bitten through his lip. There were hands, faces, voices everywhere whispering and holding him down and he sobbed, his chest aching beneath the weight of something he couldn’t grasp. The line between what was real and what was dead had become too thin and he was burning, his soul too hot, searing him from the inside when it fluttered against his flesh.

There was a healer, he saw, but behind him-a tall figure with long black hair, black eyes, and a beautiful face, brows creased with worry and confusion. Wonshik’s eyes flashed with panic before two firm hands rested against his temples and he fell into a dark, lingering silence.

~~

Who are you?

It was a voice, high and sweet--but it sounded conflicted, and Wonshik wasn’t sure why he could hear it so clearly through the pain he felt shrieking through his every breath and thought.

I am... lost. He answered.

He tried to open his eyes, but there was only the darkness, the reversed landscape on the other side of the bridge to greet him. He couldn’t see anything right away, and could barely make out the shapes of the hills and the trees that he knew stood outside the refugee house.

You don’t seem lost. The voice said, and it was more cautious this time.

Wonshik whipped his head around, trying to focus on its source, and felt his spirit stones send a thrill up his spine.

And you don’t seem like a dead thing. He retorted sourly, his eyes narrowed. He could almost see the spirit’s face, see the shape of their eyes and...was that a smirk on their face? He felt laughter ripple against his senses, washing over him in tiny waves that made his vision blur. His stones hummed against his spine.

Where are we? Wonshik asked, forcing his eyes to focus as he turned to face the tall, slender figure. They crossed their arms over their chest, peering thoughtfully down at him.

We are in-between. They answered.

Wonshik huffed. That’s not helpful. He said. He mimicked the spirit, crossing his arms over his chest stubbornly.

When you crossed the bridge, you used your stones, the spirit said, and you took me across with you. That’s not supposed to be possible. They frowned, dark eyebrows furrowed in agitated thought.

I don’t know what happened. Wonshik answered carefully, though his palms pricked with sweat.

You have never used your stones to walk before?

Wonshik shifted around, toeing at the grass beneath his feet. What’s it to you?

The spirit snorted, their laughter washing over Wonshik again in waves. His skin tightened around his bones. There was something unnatural about their laughter, something seductive and frightening. His stones ached indignantly in protest.

When you walk, you are vulnerable. You create a thread that can be pulled from either end. You were dreaming of the Jachyra, and the Jachyra became real. The spirit paused, looking directly at Wonshik. Did no one teach you?

Wonshik tried his best to not be offended by the sweet, mocking tone of the spirit’s voice. He kept his lips pressed tightly together, digging his nails into his forearms. He would die before admitting that no one wanted to teach him, that no one knew how. That he was a living curse and a burden.

The spirit gazed at him, their frightful inside-out eyes darting up and down the defiant lines of Wonshik’s body. Wonshik tried not to fidget.

I see. They said, and suddenly they were close, so close Wonshik was looking straight into their dead, black eyes and panicking because he saw nothing but an empty void. His instincts told him to draw back. His skin crawled all over his body but he stood fast, too stubborn to be the first to back down. He stared up into the spirit’s face for what felt like an eternity, gnawing the inside of his cheek to keep from turning around and bolting.

As swiftly as the spirit had come, it was gone, another ripple of laughter making Wonshik’s limbs tremble. He didn’t repress the shudder this time.

You had no teacher. But you are young, and can still learn to wield your stones. They said, their voice high and sweet like the breeze that used to run up the river in his village. His heart was beginning to hurt. His stones felt too warm and his palms too cold; clammy against the crook of his elbows. He wrapped his fists in his shirt and shivered.

What did you mean, I took you across with me? Wonshik asked in an attempt to control the conversation.

Exactly what it sounds like, human child. The spirit chuckled softly. Wonshik braced himself against the blurred laughter, shuddering as it soaked into his skin.

The spirit leaned down again, their faces a few inches apart to study his face. Wonshik’s heart thudded loudly against his ribcage, his stones stirring anxiously in response to their proximity.

You brought me back to the world of the living. That’s not supposed to be possible, but you managed to make it so. The spirit inhaled deeply, like it was smelling Wonshik, and he felt his shaking knees threaten to buckle underneath him.

You have a gift. I will help you to use it. But now, human child, it is time.

Wonshik felt the world become unsteady beneath his feet, uncrossing his arms to steady himself as he began to fall; but the motion happened slowly, as if he were moving frame-by frame, and he watched with horrible fascination as the spirit’s face became more defined the longer he fell. The black leaked from the corners of their eyes in tiny specks that shimmered away into nothing, the long black curls shortening to curl under their jaw. They looked... human.

Time for what? Was all Wonshik could manage to ask. He was still falling when the spirit hovered over him, one hand pressed against his chest, the other cupping his chin.

To wake up. They whispered directly into his ear, and the sound was so frighteningly real, so very human, that Wonshik cried out in fear.

When he felt his palm connect with the ground, his stomach gave a mighty heave; time slammed forward, rattling him deep into his very bones as everything suddenly became real again, seconds ticking by as he felt pulled from the darkness towards some kind of surface. His eyes, he realized, he was trying to open his eyes-

Sitting upright, his lungs and spirit-stones shrieked in agony as he drew unsteady breaths and looked around the bedroom. He was alone, at least physically-but the tingle from the three white opalescent stones in his spine spoke otherwise.

He knew, then, what the spirit had meant when they said Wonshik had brought them with him across the bridge. He buried his face in his hands, overwhelmed and frightened and far too unsure of what he had done.

He sank back against the stiff pillows, his hands still covering his face to hide his watering eyes. It had been years since he had cried. He wasn’t eager to break that record. He pulled his pillow closer, curled on his side with his knees pressed into the wall, hummed quietly to soothe himself into sleep. He was halfway down when there was a weight at the foot of his bed, the rustle of blankets warning him as someone sat down at his feet. Wonshik’s voice stopped in his throat, but he was too exhausted to open his eyes, too scared to face reality just yet.

A high, dulcet voice carried the melody where Wonshik had left it, his heart speeding up very slightly. He knew that voice, recognized its smooth cadence. Hearing it through his ears instead of his mind was a new experience, but he found it more calming this way.

His stones tingled along his spine as soft hands smoothed over his bare arms, pulled the sheets up around his shoulders, traced a line over the spirit-stones in his back even though they were covered by his shirt. His stones crackled weakly, but both Wonshik and the figure on his bed knew he was too drained to pose any real threat.

Wonshik somehow knew that if he opened his eyes, he would see the face of the spirit-or at least, the spirit as they wanted to appear. The image of the spirit’s shortened hair, sharper face, human eyes as he fell from the other side back into reality flashed behind his eyelids along with a feeling that Wonshik could only describe as yellow-an affirmation. That was the face, the human face. His mind was fizzling out, his thoughts breaking off mid-way and confusing what was real with what wasn’t, soothed deeper beneath the surface by that sweet singing voice. So he could still connect with the spirit, then. His mind filled with yellow again. He pictured yellow in his own sleepy brain, sending back the same positive feeling.

He didn’t resist when the body on the bed moved to lie down beside him. He shifted over to the wall without a word, accepting what he perceived as the inevitable; maybe he was even a little grateful, he realized, as an arm snaked around his waist and pulled his back closer against a flat, hard chest. They never stopped singing, though, and their lips brushed the outside of Wonshik’s ear as they finally settled against the pillows. Wonshik’s stomach fluttered as he nuzzled into the warm body that cocooned him, wondering if the spirit had a name, now that they were more of a person.

“Leo,” they said abruptly. It took Wonshik a few heartbeats to realized that the spirit--Leo, he corrected himself--had just read his mind directly and answered out loud. “My name is Leo.”

Wonshik was too tired to respond, so he made a passive noise, filling his mind with the color of sunshine to let Leo know that he understood. He drifted to sleep with Leo’s honeyed voice in his ear and fingers carding delicately through his hair.

Jun. 3rd, 2015

jiqs

Miscolored (Kenvi, 15+)

warnings: Mpreg, depression, mentions of: attempted suicide, abortion, miscarriage, minor character death
dedicated to my dearest shineforvixx!!! <33



The first thought Jaehwan had when he stretched his limbs across the mattress was that his horrific hangover was worth it because the sex had been incredible. He rolled onto his stomach, out of last night’s clingy arms (but shit, they were nice arms, and he congratulated himself about it) so his face was planted firmly on the pillow, and knew that the smile on his lips spoke of his sated thirst. It had been too long since he’d gone out just for the sake of going out. Since Taekwoon left, he’d been trying to get back on his feet, trying to forget--to make it back to how he felt before they ever met. Trying to get back to himself, to forget how to care about someone after he fucked them.

He peeled his eyes open, already irritated by the amount of light in the unfamiliar apartment. He thought about disappearing before the man with orange hair (won...stick, wonkick, won...something) woke up because if his intense need to cuddle was any indication, he’d be the sort to flutter his eyelashes and make breakfast and coffee and Jaehwan didn’t want that. He just wanted someone to fuck him properly.

He tried to put off getting up, but the man next to him was waking more and more frequently and he didn’t want to risk the awkward “no, I don’t want to have breakfast with you, I just wanted your dick so don’t bother with niceties” conversation. He smothered his groan of regret as he sat up, his head giving a hearty throb from last night’s festivities. He vaguely remembered where he’d flung his clothes the night before in his haste, and was fully dressed when he turned around to look at the still-sleeping man on the bed.

He was fucking beautiful, there was no denying that. He had a strong forehead and high cheekbones, a distinct nose and incredible muscles underneath sunny, golden skin. His hair was an orange tangle on the pillow, like a miscolored flame; his chest rose and fell steadily. Jaehwan drank him in greedily, every little detail-even the “YOLO” tattoo under his collarbone, because a lay like that was hard for him to come by and if he could get it again, he might just consider it.

Jaehwan wasn’t the sentimental sort. He wasn’t interested in commitment or mushy, romantic nonsense. Taekwoon had been an exception (and a mistake). But his stomach gave a small twinge when he turned to leave and Jaehwan wouldn’t admit it to anyone, not even himself, would deny it if he were asked. But something about that man lying on the bed (now snoring quite loudly) made his guts tie themselves in knots.

He scribbled his phone number on a mostly-empty piece of sheet music on the table. Jaehwan thought to himself that if the man with orange hair was ever brave enough to call a number he didn’t remember having writing down, he may just let said stranger take him out for dinner next time.

~~

He called Hongbin to gleefully recount the dirty details of the mind-blowing sex he’d had the night they’d gone out together, and Hongbin had congratulated him on finally getting laid.

“It’s been months, Jaehwan. I was honestly starting to think you’d never fuck anyone again.” Hongbin had joked.

Two months ago, that would have made Jaehwan’s heart twinge. Taekwoon hadn’t left him on good terms, and Jaehwan had taken it personally. It was hard not to, when his partner left to be with someone “more serious” and broke off their stupid little “engagement” in the process. But Jaehwan had told Taekwoon from the start that “serious” wasn’t his thing; he didn’t do commitment, not really, and no matter how hard he’d tried to shape himself to be what was good for Taekwoon, in the end he couldn’t change who he was.

But hearing about it now, Jaehwan laughed out loud and it felt good.

“Come on, Bean, you know I’m a fucking slut. I just had to get thirsty enough first.” He scoffed. “Which reminds me, who was that mega-babe you left with the other night?! I thought he was a bit girlier than your usual type, you little bottom bitch.”

Hongbin’s embarrassed laugh rang in his ears and Jaehwan felt at peace.

“Oh, that’s Kibum, don’t let him fool you...”

When Jaehwan hung up the phone that night, he slid between his sheets feeling like maybe he was going to be okay after all.

~~

He pretended he wasn’t waiting for an unknown number to pop up on his screen, but with each passing day, he felt a little more glum about it.

~~

A month later, he started throwing up in the mornings, and wondered if it was because of his new medication. He didn’t think much about it until the second week in, weakly hovering over the toilet at work, wiping the spit and vomit from his chin and wondering if he should call his doctor. The stranger still hadn’t called. Jaehwan pretended to not notice, or care.

When he entered the third week of being sick every morning and hating the way literally everything tasted, he figured he should at least do something.

~

He didn’t call his doctor though. He called Hakyeon.

“Well, what are the side effects of your new meds?” His friend chirped at him, sounding more like a nagging mother than a young man.

“I don’t know, vomiting, dizziness, diarrhea, all the usual bullshit.” Jaehwan grunted, rubbing his palm across his forehead.

“When did it start?”

“A few weeks ago, which is why I thought it was weird, I started the meds almost two months before that and there weren’t any problems...”

“Oh, really? That is weird. I--Jaehwan,” Hakyeon said suddenly, and the sudden alarm in his voice made Jaehwan uneasy.

“Yeah....?” He answered cautiously.

“When did you go out with Hongbin?”

Jaehwan’s brow furrowed in confusion.

“Uuh, a month ago, maybe? Why? That has nothing to do with--”

“Who did you go home with?”

“What?!”

“Did you go home with someone that night?” Hakyeon emphasized every syllable, his voice low and clear. Jaehwan’s already upset stomach began to tighten nervously.

“Why the fuck does it matter?!” he responded peevishly, rubbing his temples. Perhaps calling “Momma Cha” had been a mistake, after all.

“Because this sounds an awful lot like what happened to me when I found out...about...you know.”

Hakyeon trailed off suggestively, and it took Jaehwan a moment to grasp what he meant. The baby, Jaehwan realized with a jolt of adrenaline heating his veins. Jaehwan’s stomach disappeared, dropped straight through the floor and melted into the lava at the molten center of the earth. He swore the entire world stopped moving, stopped breathing, for those brief moments when his ears were ringing and he became suddenly aware that the only thing holding him to the planet was gravity.

“What.” He finally said, a little dumbly.

He heard Hakyeon shifting around on the other end of the phone.

“Jaehwan, I’m not trying to freak you out-”

“You’re failing.”

“But... I mean, I know you went home with someone, that was the whole reason you went out in the first place. Getting laid. Do you remember his name?”

Jaehwan blinked at the wall, acutely aware of the space around him, trying very hard to not think about the words that had just come out of Hakyeon’s mouth. There was no way, there was literally no way--

“Jaehwan!!”

“WHAT, Jesus, fuck, what?!”

“Pay attention!” Hakyeon snapped in his ear. Jaehwan tried not to crush his phone in his fist. “Do you remember his name?”

“No.” He said, and his voice sounded a little hollow, slightly drawn. There’s no way, honestly, that wouldn’t happen to me, I’m way too careful.

“Were you still on the pill at the time?” Hakyeon prompted, and it’s like he knew all the places to touch to rile Jaehwan’s anxiety beyond the point of manageability. He didn’t want to answer that question.

“Jaehwan?” Hakyeon probed again, a little more gently. Jaehwan didn’t answer, because no, he hadn’t been on the pill at the time, he’d been in the process of changing medications to manage his libido and his anxiety, and he hadn’t yet started the newest cycle of pills, holy shit--

“Jaehwan, you need to take a test.” Hakyeon said quietly, and Jaehwan slammed his thumb against the “end call” button sixteen times more than he needed to before he was able to calm down.

His hand hovered his stomach, his throat clenching as tears pricked the backs of his eyes.

There’s no way. It would never happen to me.

~~

It happened, and Jaehwan cursed at the second blue line on his third pregnancy test and snapped it in half before snatching a fourth one out of the box.

~~

Not an hour later, his phone rings. It’s a number he doesn’t recognize and he wants to throw up his own insides.

It’s the stranger, Jaehwan realizes with a thrill when that low, gravelly voice shoot straight from the phone to his dick. He stutters through the voicemail, explaining that he was looking for Ken (is that really the name Jaehwan had given him, jesus, he needed to come up with a better alias) and that he was sorry if he had the wrong number.

He didn’t leave a name.

Jaehwan didn’t call him back, just ripped open the second box of pregnancy tests, convinced that the whole batch in the first box had been faulty.

~~
Jaehwan turned up at Hakyeon’s apartment later that night a sobbing mess, barely held together at the seams, still holding the pregnancy test (the ninth one he’d taken that day) in his shaking hands when Hakyeon opened the door.

Hakyeon didn’t question him, and Jaehwan was thankful-just pulled Jaehwan’s trembling body into his arms and kissed his forehead as he cried late into the night, his fingers curling into anguished fists that wanted to beat against his belly, but instead beat against the mattress.

~~

He knew where the man lived because he’d had to walk home the next morning, but Jaehwan didn’t go see him immediately despite Hakyeon’s urging. He needed some time and space to think, to clear his head. He wasn’t stupid, wasn’t a kid, he knew what his options were. He was twenty-three and he was pregnant. He kept repeating it to himself, trying very hard not to panic and failing.

Male pregnancies weren’t all that uncommon, not since the equalizer had become a required injection for all young boys several decades ago; but they were still extremely high-risk. No one knew that better than Hakyeon.

The stranger called twice more, but didn’t leave voicemails. After that, the phone calls stopped.

~~

Jaehwan had gone with Hakyeon to the doctor’s office five years ago when Hakyeon had found out Minho had gotten him pregnant before he went and got himself killed in the military. Jaehwan held his hand through the first ultrasound and had been with Hakyeon all the way through it, all the way from the baby shower Jaehwan planned himself to the waiting room in the maternity ward where the doctor told him with a straight face and pinched eyes that Hakyeon had made it, but his little girl hadn’t.

Jaehwan hadn’t cried, at least not in front of Hakyeon, although he thinks now that he should have. He’d thought his lack of tears meant that he was being strong, meant he wasn’t letting his own emotions about his still-born god daughter take away from Hakyeon’s grieving.

But when he found himself once more in Hakyeon’s bed, his head against his friend’s shoulder as they cried together, he thought there was nothing more important than the fact that Hakyeon understood this perfectly, and wept openly because of it.

~~

Jaehwan hated kids. He hated relationships, at least romantic ones, didn’t ever want a family and never had; thought that marriage was absolutely ridiculous and hated when people tried to change his mind about it. But he loved sex, and he was good at having it with no strings attached. Sex was something he needed, like people needed a drink or a cigarette, and he’d never felt particularly ashamed of it. So when he needed it and didn’t want to go out, he called someone.

Hongbin spread him out on the bed, fucked him hard and slow with his knees hooked over Hongbin’s elbows, gave Jaehwan two orgasms in the time it took Hongbin to finish once. Jaehwan knew he should have told him before they got started, but he needed to get off, needed to let himself out of his own head for a while so he did it the only way he knew how. And besides, Hongbin hadn’t asked, had just said he’d be right over when Jaehwan told him what he needed, had laughed with a raised eyebrow when Jaehwan swatted the condom from his hand and said, “Just pull out.”

Hongbin wasn’t the best in bed, wasn’t the man with orange hair and fire in his fingertips, but he was good, and Jaehwan sank back into his mattress with a relieved sigh after he cleaned himself off. Hongbin, ever the neat-freak, opted for a shower.

He lit a cigarette when he got back to the bed, wearing the briefs Jaehwan bought him for his birthday last year. He raised the carton and lighter in offering, his eyebrows disappearing into his wet hair when Jaehwan shook his head.

“Never known you to say no to a post-sex smoke, Jaehwan.” Hongbin teased, but Jaehwan heard the frown in his voice.

“I’m pregnant.” He offered, pleased by the fact that his voice didn’t shake.

Hongbin laughed, and Jaehwan pictured the way the sound shaped the smoke that blew past his lips.

“Very funny, Jaehwan.” he said fondly.

“No, I’m serious. I’m pregnant.”

An uneasy silence. Jaehwan’s stomach turned nervously.

“What...?” Hongbin breathed.

“I’m almost two months pregnant. I don’t know the guy’s name. It happened that night you met Kibum.”

The air was absolutely still for a moment before it was disrupted by a flurry of coughing and swearing. Jaehwan laid calmly with his hands under the back of his head, eyes closed and a serene look on his face.

“What the fucking Hell, Jaehwan, what is your fucking problem, are you JOKING? Because that is NOT funny-”

“I’m not joking,” Jaehwan said evenly. “Why do you think I told you to forget the condom?”

“What a waste of a smoke, god DAMN, Jaehwan! And, you told me to pull out, that’s not the same thing!” Hongbin hissed, and Jaehwan heard him hastily smash his cigarette into the ash tray. Jaehwan smiled a little at that, gave a little hum before he rolled onto his side and opened his eyes to face Hongbin.

“You just gave me a booty call and didn’t think to tell me you’re pregnant before you let me fuck you?” Hongbin asked after a moment, a little stiffly.

Jaehwan shrugged. “What’re you gonna do, get me extra pregnant, or something? Relax. He already knocked me up. You can’t make it worse.” he said flatly.

Hongbin just glared at him. Jahwan picked at his comforter nervously.

“When did you find out?” Hongbin asked tentatively.

“Last week. Hakyeon pointed it out...the stuff I’d been feeling, the throwing up and food tasting weird...I was in the middle of changing meds at the time. I thought I was safe.” He laughed, and the sound was bitter. “I was wrong.”

Hongbin fidgeted, looking at Jaehwan with numerous wrinkles between his eyebrows.

“Are you... Did you....Have....” He cleared his throat, taking a deep breath. Jaehwan rested his head against the pillow with a sigh.

“I don’t know what I’m gonna do yet, Bean. I haven’t told the guy. I know where he lives but I don’t know anything else about him. I don’t know if I’m gonna tell him at all.”

Hongbin nodded, staring thoughtfully down at Jaehwan’s picking fingers. He reached out, fingertips stilling Jaehwan’s hand where it worried a loose thread on his quilt.

“It’s okay.” He said quietly. Jaehwan’s eyes began to water. “It’s okay to not know yet, Jaehwan.”

Hongbin knew better than to embrace Jaehwan. He just let Jaehwan cry, face down in the pillow, silently shaking. His hands were gentle as they massaged the knots from Jaehwan’s shoulders.

Jaehwan was glad that Hongbin was gone in the morning.

~~

“You don’t owe him anything,” Hakyeon said bluntly. “You don’t have to tell him anything at all, if you don’t want to.”

Jaehwan nodded, licking another stripe up his ice cream cone. He knew Hakyeon was right, but it only helped to temporarily soothe his anxiety and did nothing to help solve the dilemma.

“Hey, just...” Hakyeon froze on the sidewalk, tugging Jaehwan’s wrist and looking into his eyes with such a pained expression that Jaehwan felt ill.

“Just remember to think about the bigger picture, okay?” He finally said after a moment. Jaehwan nodded, knowing that what Hakyeon was actually saying was “please don’t do this if you aren’t sure about it.” He was good at reading between the notes of Hakyeon’s voice.

Hakyeon held his hand all the way back to his apartment, and kissed him on the cheek before bounding up the stairs.

~~

It’s been almost three months.

His bump is starting to show.

“You can’t put this off anymore, Jaehwan. You need to make a decision, or the legal termination date will pass--”

“I fucking know that, Hongbin, would you please just shut up?”

Hongbin looked startled, a little hurt. He’d never experienced that side of Jaehwan before. His pretty lips pressed in a firm line and he stood up, snatching his bag from the couch where he’d dropped it earlier and storming to the door.

Jaehwan’s heart tightened in his chest.

“Wait, Bean, please--”

“Nope. No, Jaehwan I’m not playing this game with you anymore. You fucking decide, and soon, or you’re not going to GET a choice. You can’t just pretend this isn’t happening.” His voice dropped dangerously low and Jaehwan’s stomach shot to his toes. “You can’t pretend that this isn’t happening because that’s not fair to me, or that baby, or Hakyeon. When you’re ready to actually do something instead of sitting here wallowing in your own fucking misery, when you actually WANT any of the help Hakyeon and I have been trying to offer you, when you’re ready to stop being such a selfish fucking prick, you can call me. Until then, I’m not interested.”

Hongbin slams the door behind him so hard that the framed picture of Jaehwan and Taekwoon falls off the wall, the glass shattering when it hits the floor.

Jaehwan sinks to the floor, laying his head on the carpet, breathes, and cries.

~~

He stops taking calls from Hakyeon.

He doesn’t call Hongbin, and Hongbin doesn’t call him.

Jaehwan can’t understand how he feels, it’s too complicated; he feels invaded, feels dysmorphic and wrong, like he’s being taken over from the inside and he hates it. Like he’s been infected. He never wanted this, never asked for this. His lifestyle didn’t support any family because he had none, and didn’t want any.

But then he thinks of Hakyeon, of the hollowed-out look in his eyes when he’d finally left the hospital after attempting suicide following his still-born baby’s birth. And it may have been years ago, but Jaehwan shudders when he thinks of the marks around Hakyeon’s neck, the rope-burn scars that will never truly fade that he covered with high shirt collars and scarves. When Jaehwan thinks of the nine hours Hakyeon had spent in labour trying to bring a life into the world, nine hours of grueling pain his body wasn’t truly ever meant for, Jaehwan realized that he didn’t want to suffer for nothing. Hakyeon had suffered bitterly, but at the end of it all, Minho was still dead, and so was their baby.

But maybe that was the difference, he realized, his stomach turning nervously. Maybe he didn’t have to suffer for nothing. He didn’t remember much about that orange-haired man, but he remembered enough; his smile, his strongest facial features, the warmth of his hands. “I’m a musician,” he’d shouted to Jaehwan over the din of the bar, “I write and produce music.”

Jaehwan closed his eyes for a moment, remembered the hot thrill of hands on his hips, his thighs. And it’s not right, this never should have happened to him, he was always so careful but sometimes, as Hakyeon would say, bad things happen. But maybe he didn’t have to do it alone.

He pulled a shaky breath into his lungs, and before he could change his mind, his feet were in his shoes and he was out the door, his heart hammering in his throat as he headed for the orange-haired man’s apartment.

May. 23rd, 2015

jiqs

Momma Bird (HaKen, NC17)

( You are about to view content that may only be appropriate for adults. )
jiqs

You're gonna wish you (introduction)

He’s up late into the night, the rest of the members having long since abandoned the dance studio in favor of some well-earned rest. He’s unplugged his headphones and hooked his computer up to the amp, so the song spills forward from the farthest reaches of the practice room, echoing back against the wall of mirrors to leave no corner untouched. Leaning back in the chair, he drapes his elbow over his eyes and listens.

He used to hate this, he remembers as he closes his eyes with a sigh, listening to the hard rhythm of the drums against the vast, empty space the simple melody leaves behind. Being alone used to frighten him. He used to feel lost when there was no one to entertain, like he had no reason, no purpose.

But then came Taekwoon.

Taekwoon, with his silent eyes, soft voice, smooth hands. Taekwoon, with his high cheekbones and plush lips and his ridiculous overbite, insultingly good-looking even in the most hideous outfits the coordi-noonas could force him into. Taekwoon, who kissed him for the first time in the early winter, sucking on Jaehwan’s top lip and gripping his cock through his jeans as he begged to be touched, panting desperately into Jaehwan’s mouth [and his moans tasted like candy on Jaehwan’s tongue]. Taekwoon, who chanted Jaehwan’s name like a prayer when they fucked almost every day after that, usually in the practice rooms on their lunch break, giggling and whimpering breathlessly because they knew Hakyeon could open the door at any moment to find Taekwoon bent over, braced against a keyboard, screaming for Jaehwan’s cock-but that only makes it more exciting, Taekwoon would argue between desperate cries of his name. Taekwoon, whose legs opened for Jaehwan almost as easily as he dropped to his knees in the practiced way Jaehwan loved, his fingers steadily working down his zipper, his dark eyes never once leaving Jaehwan’s face and his lips curled up at the corners in a cat-like, knowing smirk.

He isn’t afraid to be alone anymore.

He opens his eyes, feeling the calm sweep through his limbs as he stands and starts the song from the beginning, looking at his reflection in the wall of mirrors. He’s giving himself a satisfied once-over as he counts in his head, lifting the microphone to his lips long before his entrance cue.

He isn’t afraid of being alone. He isn’t afraid of anything.

His smile looks strange on his face, a little crazed, out of focus, but he looks startlingly handsome with his newest haircut and his eyebrows freshly shaped. He flutters his eyelashes, loving the way he looks, loving that he is now as unreachable as the stars in the country sky. As untouchable, as immaculate as a constellation. As brilliantly beautiful and desirable as Taekwoon had been to him, once.

He draws in a breath, his mouth shaping English syllables as delicately as possible when he begins to sing.