☆ミriha (tatoeba) wrote in simplyephemeral,
☆ミriha
tatoeba
simplyephemeral

  • Music:

k-pop; Imprints on Your Skin 1/2

Title: Imprints on Your Skin
Pairing: Chanyeol/Jongin
Rating: NC-17, some marking/writing on the body kink, a little angst
Summary: AU. Jongin doesn’t want anyone to know he and Chanyeol are dating, while all Chanyeol wants is to make it clear that Jongin is his.
Author’s Note: 20k. So Chanyeol tried to draw on Jongin at a fansign and I cried and spent the next three months writing this fic and i HATE KAIYEOL THE END. All the love and thanks to JJ for holding my hand through this thing, and to lovely tlist for putting up with me whining about it and encouraging me along the way! Thank you. (´ ▽`).。o♡

That’s all. I really, really hope you like this! ;~~;


It’s a sticky hot summer afternoon and Chanyeol is sprawled flat out on his back in his apartment floor, three fans working to make the air in the apartment even a little bit cooler. Beside him, Jongin is lying on his stomach, feet kicked up in the air and occasionally swinging back and forth. He’s scribbling things into a notebook, looking between the sheets and what seems to be his calculus textbook. It’s a Saturday afternoon and Jongin is doing homework while Chanyeol is melting.

Chanyeol pokes him in the side with a toe, but Jongin doesn’t pay him any attention. So he slowly nudges the flimsy fabric of Jongin’s white tank up his body, exposing the slightly sweaty slicked skin of his lower back. He licks his lips.

“What’re you doing?” Jongin asks, deadpan. He doesn’t even look up from his book.

Chanyeol pouts. “I’m bored.”

“Play a video game or something,” Jongin responds. “I’m trying to work.”

“Work later,” Chanyeol whines, gently slides the heel of his foot over Jongin’s ass. He’s only wearing a pair of grey boxer shorts, and Chanyeol can feel the shudder that trembles through his body at the touch. His attention is slipping. Jongin hasn’t written down a word in ten minutes.

“Stop,” he says helplessly, and when Chanyeol cackles, Jongin throws a thick marker at him from the pile of pens he’d dumped onto the floor earlier in search of a highlighter.

Chanyeol laughs louder as the marker hits him in the chest and he grabs it, then pulls himself up. Jongin eyes him warily, and Chanyeol pounces, capturing Jongin in a hug and presses his lips to the nape of his neck.

A loud strangled noise of frustration leaves Jongin’s lips and he’s trying to elbow Chanyeol off, complaining that it’s too fucking hot for this shit, and while Chanyeol half agrees, he doesn’t think the weather should ever come in between making out. It’s a struggle but he manages to find Jongin’s mouth with his own, slightly chapped against his, but perfectly full and delightful as always. He tastes like the lemonade he’d been drinking earlier and it’s addictive, licking his way into Jongin’s mouth deeper, tongue slipping across the back of his teeth. Jongin is quick to give up then, fingers clenching into the front of Chanyeol’s old tee. It’s starting to rip at the hem and the the collar is frayed from when Chanyeol cut it apart a few years ago and Jongin tells him to throw it away whenever he wears it, but now he uses his grip to draw Chanyeol closer, twisting himself until he’s settled on his back on the floor, his head pillowed in his textbook.

Sweat beads along Chanyeol’s hairline and he pulls away slowly, enjoying the disapproving whine that Jongin emits. He tries to pull him back but Chanyeol just kneels above him, catching his breath. He’s still got that marker in his hand, he realizes, and he smirks down at Jongin, biting the cap between his teeth to open it.

“What are you doing?” Jongin says again, this time a little dubious, as Chanyeol pushes up the front of his shirt and licks a slow path down his chest to the flat of his abs. “Shit--” Jongin gasps, body relaxing at the heat of Chanyeol’s tongue, and it’s enough to distract him as Chanyeol tugs on his boxers, exposing the jut of his hipbone. The first press of the marker to his skin has Jongin jerking, nearly smacking Chanyeol in the face with his knee. “Chanyeol, what the--Stop! Don’t fucking write on me, what is wrong with you--”

“Just wait,” Chanyeol interrupts, ignoring all of Jongin’s protests to press his arm over Jongin’s waist and pin him to the floor. He writes quickly but in precise, even strokes, and the black ink stands out stark against Jongin’s skin. Chanyeol stares down at his handiwork afterward in fascination, a wicked grin on his lips, and Jongin is shoving him over to get a look down at it too.

“Did you just fucking write your name across my hipbone?” Jongin exclaims, incredulous. He looks at Chanyeol torn between disbelief and amusement. Maybe something else, too, lingering in the corners of his eyes as he stares back down at the ink on his hip and up at Chanyeol again. He swallows, thickly, adam’s apple bobbing in his throat, and Chanyeol grins.

“Yes,” Chanyeol answers him. He can barely look away from Jongin’s hip, either. It was just supposed to be a little joke, something to get back at him for ignoring him in favor of studying. But now...now Chanyeol feels hot all over, in a way that has nothing to do with the terrible summer heat. “Gotta stake my claim, you know,” he adds, trying to lighten the mood, make a joke of it, but it doesn’t help. At least not for him.

Jongin, on the other hand, groans loudly, and this time, throws his textbook at Chanyeol’s head.



-



Two days later and they’re getting ready in the morning, throwing clothes around to find something clean to wear, and that’s when Chanyeol notices it. Jongin’s halfway out of an ugly Iron Man shirt he keeps here to wears to sleep whenever Jongdae’s not around and Chanyeol catches sight of his hip -- and his name still scribbled in black ink across the skin.

He thought for sure Jongin had scrubbed it off by now, but it’s still there. Slightly faded, sure, but there, dark enough still that it’s visible on Jongin’s tanned skin and Chanyeol’s throat feels suddenly dry. He reaches out to tug Jongin close by hooking his finger into the band of his underwear and Jongin raises a brow as he stumbles into him.

“It’s still there,” he says, and he hopes his voice doesn’t come out as strangled to Jongin as it does to himself. He presses his thumb over the marks, tracing the letters of his name slowly, carefully. He doesn’t want to rub it off.

“It fucking won’t wash off,” Jongin snaps, shoving at him. But there’s a blush forming high on his cheeks. He looks down at Chanyeol’s name on his hip and his gaze lingers there a bit too long, but then he’s grabbing his shirt off the bed and dragging it on, and it’s hidden from sight. Chanyeol is surprised at how much he hates that. “I still can’t believe you fucking wrote your name on me. So stupid.”

He sounds oddly fond, instead of annoyed, and Chanyeol grins at him, walks over to wrap arms around his waist from behind. “You love it,” he says, and Jongin’s breath hitches, but he turns around and looks Chanyeol straight in the eye.

“So do you,” he returns. He holds Chanyeol’s gaze for a few long seconds in which Chanyeol’s sure his heart is going to hurdle straight out of his chest, because Jongin’s right, he does like it, and he’s not entirely sure why.

Jongin draws away then, before Chanyeol can figure it out, and for the rest of the day, and the day after, they don’t say anything else about it.



-



It’s when Chanyeol’s name has all but faded from Jongin’s skin that Chanyeol press the marker against his hip and carefully trace back over the lines he’d left days earlier. Jongin is shivering under him, eyes wide and lower lip sucked into his mouth, and he doesn’t stop him. He’s watching, as best as he can, as he’s lying flat against the bed, and Chanyeol enjoys the heat of his gaze as he concentrates on marking Jongin again. It might be temporary, and it’ll wash away in a few days, but for now it’s enough to make Chanyeol’s heart thump loudly and arousal pool low in his belly.

When he finishes he doesn’t let Jongin go, instead he pushes his shirt up his chest, bunched up under Jongin’s armpits, and licks down his sternum. Jongin sucks in a breath, and the bed creaks under them as he wriggles, tries to get more comfortable.

Hands slide into Chanyeol's hair, gentle but urging, dragging him so Jongin can fit their mouths together. Chanyeol sighs against his lips, drops the marker off to the side and it falls over the side of the bed. Chanyeol holds Jongin's jaw in a hand, tilts him up for better access, and he breaks away to kiss down Jongin's throat. His skin is warm, too warm, from the unrelenting weather and the fact that their air conditioner has been acting up lately. It cuts off throughout the night these days, and whenever Jongin stays over he always complains at three in the morning about Chanyeol clinging to him all gross and sweaty.

It's cool in here now, and Chanyeol is thankful because it feels like his skin is burning up too. Especially as Jongin's shaky fingers slip from his hair and dip under his shirt, up over the ridges of his spine. Jongin gasps when Chanyeol presses his tongue flat over a nipple, hips instinctively pushing up and he's already half-hard, tight against the front of his jeans. They're open up at the waist, tugged down low with his underwear so that Chanyeol could get to his hip to mark him again.

He pulls back as he remembers, drinks in the sight of Jongin all flushed for him, because of him, and the deep ink across his hip, Chanyeol's name bright and bold, for everyone to know that Jongin is his.

Chanyeol has never particularly thought of himself as extremely possessive, but there's something in the way the ink looks on Jongin that makes the blood in his veins hum pleasantly. He wants to mark him more.

Jongin groans out a loud, "Fuck," when Chanyeol works the flesh of his stomach, just above his name, between his teeth. "Jesus, Chanyeol, warn a person before you do shit like that," Jongin says, sounding delightfully out of breath.

“Sorry,” Chanyeol says, but he’s grinning wide and he knows he doesn’t sound even an ounce apologetic. Jongin just rolls his eyes, but as Chanyeol licks over the bite marks he’d left, his eyes flutter shut and hips rock up against Chanyeol’s mouth.

The air feels thick, almost tense around them, as Chanyeol slides his fingers teasingly across Jongin's stomach, just skimming over the band of his underwear. He flicks his eyes up to look at him, and Jongin's gaze is dark with want, and yet still slightly apprehensive.

Chanyeol feels the same. This is different from every other time, not that there's been many to begin with. It's only been three months, and in that time only inexperienced blowjobs are pretty much as far as they've gotten. This, though, right now, feels so much different, so much greater, like they're finally edging to that line Chanyeol's been itching to cross ever since Jongin sucked him off once in an empty classroom at campus. Maybe even before that.

The point is that he's not sure how far he can go now, how far Jongin will let him.

He doesn't think he can ask, so instead he presses soft, open mouthed kisses to Jongin's tummy, working around his belly-button, and Jongin’s body shrinks back from his touch instinctively like it’s too much. So responsive, Chanyeol’s always liked that about Jongin, the way he can’t ever quite hide his emotions from his face or in the sound of his voice. Right now, he’s clenching his fists into the sheets on either side of him and his tiny gasps fill the room in a way Chanyeol’s sure he’ll hear them long after Jongin’s gone back to his dorm.

“Do you like this?” Chanyeol asks, and his own voice startles him, deep and assured, even though Chanyeol already feels a little like he’s falling apart. He pulls himself up, straddling one of Jongin’s legs as he looks at him, and Jongin nods, licks his lips as he seems to gather up his thoughts.

“I think you like it more,” he says, and he releases a hand from the sheets to brush his fingers into the mark Chanyeol had left in his skin with his teeth. It’ll probably be dark and purpled by tomorrow, and Chanyeol can’t wait to see it. “You like this,” Jongin says, fingers trailing over to where Chanyeol wrote his name, “don’t you?”

“Maybe,” Chanyeol admits softly, and Jongin lets out a breathless laugh.

He tugs Chanyeol close with a hand and Chanyeol ends up sprawled against his chest, Jongin’s lips hot against his chin. “That doesn’t surprise me one bit,” Jongin murmurs, and before Chanyeol can demand what he means by that, Jongin is grabbing a fistful of hair and dragging him into a kiss.

And this takes the edge off, that uncertainty lingering in the back of Chanyeol’s mind. It’s easy to drown in Jongin’s eager kisses, the way his hands run up his sides, leaving hot trails in their wake as Jongin pushes his shirt up as far as he can until Chanyeol has to break away to pull it off completely. Chanyeol catches his mouth again after that, nipping his bottom lip between his teeth before sliding his tongue inside and Jongin’s groan sends a tumult of pleasure through his body. Chanyeol might be bigger, but Jongin is a little stronger, and he hooks a leg around Chanyeol’s and smoothly tips him over, his back hitting the mattress with a loud creak of the bed. It’s old and ratty and Jongin once joked that they’d end up breaking his bed sometime soon, and Chanyeol doesn’t doubt that anymore. He thinks it’d be pretty worth it, actually.

“Hey,” Jongin whispers, pulling Chanyeol’s attention back to him as he settles comfortably into Chanyeol’s lap. His shirt has slipped back half-way down his chest, but Chanyeol can still see his handiwork from earlier clear on Jongin’s hip.

“What?” Chanyeol says. He rests his hands on Jongin’s waist, thumb brushing over the bruise he’d left, and Jongin’s breath hitches.

“Can I--” Jongin says, hesitant, and before Chanyeol can ask what he wants exactly, Jongin is pressing his palm against the front of his jeans.

He’d been so focused on the way Jongin looked all flushed with Chanyeol’s name written across his skin, the indents of his teeth against his flesh, that Chanyeol didn’t realize just how hard he is. He feels it now though, as Jongin rubs his palm over his pants, arousal pooling low in his belly, and he nods once, twice. His hair flops into his face and he hisses, “Yeah. Yeah, okay, of course you can--”

Jongin laughs, amusement clear in his eyes, and he stops Chanyeol’s rambling with his mouth. Chanyeol gasps as Jongin ruts down against him, rubbing their erections together through their jeans. A strangled sort of gasp escapes Chanyeol’s lips, but Jongin easily swallows it down, kissing with an enthusiasm that Chanyeol hasn’t quite seen from him before. He gets it, though, because he’s pretty much the same right now, fisting his hands into the front of Jongin’s shirt and pulling him as close as he can as he draws himself up to sit back against the headboard instead of lying flat on his back.

Jongin follows him, knees on either side of Chanyeol’s lap, the insides of his thighs warm against Chanyeol’s legs even through the material of their jeans. Chanyeol releases a hand from Jongin’s shirt to reach around and cup his ass, drawing him in closer, and Jongin whimpers into his mouth as he grinds down against him again. Their mouths fit nicely together again and everything after that feels urgent, rushed, like they don’t have hours until Jongdae comes back to the apartment, until Jongin needs to meet with some classmates for a study group.

But Chanyeol doesn’t mind it, rather enjoys the needy pitch to Jongin’s voice, the breathless gasps against his lips. When Chanyeol pushes Jongin’s jeans down his hips, Jongin draws away to help quickly, kicking his clothing off onto the floor before rolling back over to help Chanyeol undo his own jeans. Jongin grins down at him, eyes all mischievous as he tugs his jeans down and off, before following with his underwear.

As they slide back together, now skin against skin, Chanyeol can’t help the moan that tumbles from his lips. Jongin shudders under his palms as he runs his hands up over the curve of his ass and along his back, fisting into the hairs at the nape of his neck. Jongin rocks his hips down, their erections brushing together in delicious friction, and it’s just what they both need. Chanyeol knows he can’t hold back much longer, and the way that Jongin clings to him once Chanyeol gets a hand around their dicks and strokes them together in a quick, unrelenting pace, ensures him that Jongin is close, too.

“Chanyeol--” His name falls from Jongin’s lips incessantly, like Jongin can’t form any other words but that, and it’s like music to Chanyeol’s ears. He loves the way Jongin is so focused on him, so focused on them together, and he tugs Jongin away from where he’s gasping into his ear to look into his face. All flushed dark and eyes bright, he looks amazing, and Chanyeol lets his gaze wander down his chest, down to where his name is still inked across Jongin’s hipbone, where that dark bruise sits stark against his skin.

Chanyeol releases the hand on the back of Jongin’s neck to reach down and press his thumb gently into the mark. Jongin keens, hips jerking forward into Chanyeol’s firm grip, dragging along Chanyeol’s dick, and they both moan, then, and Jongin drops his forehead onto Chanyeol’s shoulder, breath hot against his skin. He whimpers softly as Chanyeol slowly drags his lips down the side of his neck, scrapes his teeth over his collarbone. Jongin grinds down into him, and Chanyeol brushes his fingers across that mark again, delighting in the way it makes Jongin shudder in his arms. He likes it, it’s obvious, and Chanyeol wants to mark him even more.

He bites down into the juncture between Jongin's neck and shoulder, and Jongin's fingers claw desperately down his chest in surprise. He moans Chanyeol's name deeply and it's possibly the sexiest thing Chanyeol has ever heard, his hips bucking up instinctively as the sound goes straight to his dick, fueling his arousal even more.

"Oh god, I can't," Jongin mumbles and Chanyeol drops the hand on his waist to rub purposefully over the head of Jongin's dick. Jongin jerks into his palm, and Chanyeol bites down a little harder against his neck, and that's it. Jongin comes with a loud groan he tries to muffle into Chanyeol's shoulder, his whole body quivering in pleasure. Chanyeol feels his dick twitching against his as Jongin continues to move against him as he rides out his high, and it's not long before he follows, too, teeth sinking into Jongin's skin as he comes onto their stomachs.

His heart is racing, loud in his ears like the sounds of their ragged breaths. Jongin slowly sags in his arms, a tiny, breathless sort of chuckle tickling behind Chanyeol's ear as he lifts his head. He's smiling, sated, eyes curving happily. Catching Chanyeol's gaze, he turns a little embarrassed, the flush of exertion on his cheeks deepening, and Chanyeol's racing heart picks up it’s speed. He leans in and kisses him gently and Jongin's smile widens against his lips.

When Jongin pulls back, he's grinning. He stretches his arms over his head and Chanyeol drinks in the mark on his neck, the one on his hip. His name, precisely written across the skin. Chanyeol's name. Chanyeol's. His.

Chanyeol's heart soars.

Jongin looks at him like he knows what he's thinking, but he doesn't say anything. Instead he drops his arms and slides off Chanyeol, off the bed, ignoring Chanyeol's tiny whine to keep him there.

"I'm hungry," Jongin says, and he pouts. "Let's get some ice cream."

Chanyeol laughs, shaking his head in amusement, but lets Jongin drag him out of bed. "Clean me up first and then we'll see," he says, and Jongin easily pulls him toward the bathroom.



-



“Sehun gave me so much shit about that hickey on my neck,” Jongin grumbles to Chanyeol over the phone two days later. “I stole makeup from Baekhyun just to cover the fucking thing up.”

Chanyeol frowns. “Don’t cover it up,” he says, hoping he doesn’t sound too displeased by the fact that Jongin’s hiding the mark. “That’s not the point.”

Jongin doesn’t seem to hear him at all though. “Can’t you do that sort of thing where no one will see it?” He pauses for a moment, then adds, “This whole thing between us...it’s still supposed to be a secret.”

The frown on Chanyeol’s face deepens, and he can feel his heart sink a little in his chest. This is something he tries not to think about often, that the fact that they’re dating is something Jongin doesn’t want to be public knowledge. Chanyeol agreed to it, too, so it’s not like it’s completely Jongin’s fault, but lately Chanyeol has been wondering why he did in the first place.

He sighs, carefully balances his phone between his ear and shoulder as he opens his backpack to fish his keys out from where they’d fallen to the bottom. He kicks open the door to his apartment and shuffles in, slipping out of his shoes and dropping his bag to the floor by the closet. Jongdae waves at him from the couch where he’s got a few bags of chips open on the coffee table and Call of Duty on the television. Chanyeol manages to grin back at him before heading to the kitchen. His smile drops then, Jongin’s words still ringing loud in his head, and he says, “You’re right. It is supposed to be a secret, but--”

“Exactly! And I’m running out of excuses to tell Sehun when he asks me about it. I told him I just burned myself accidentally with a curling iron but he totally doesn’t believe me.”

The slight petulant tone to Jongin’s voice pulls a laugh from Chanyeol. He wants to tell him that maybe this means they should just come clean to their friends, but then he figures if Jongin really wanted that, he would’ve just told Sehun the truth without coming up with a lame lie. If Jongin really wanted that, he wouldn’t be calling right now to complain about marks Chanyeol leaves on his skin where people can see. Chanyeol’s heart drops into his stomach with unease, but he pushes the feeling away and forces a grin on his face, hoping he doesn’t sound disappointed to Jongin.

“I don’t know why you’re complaining so much,” he says, and he pitches his voice low so Jongdae can’t hear him, even though he’s sure Jongdae’s far too engrossed in his game to pay attention. “You liked it. I know you did.”

Jongin splutters on the other end and Chanyeol can just imagine his delightfully embarrassed face. “That’s beside the point!” Jongin exclaims, clearly flustered. “Just...be more careful next time.”

Chanyeol hums noncommittally as he rifles through the fridge for something to eat. He hasn’t seen Jongin since the other day but he can just imagine the dark bruise on his skin, peeking out beneath the collar of his shirt when he moves. “If you’re that worried about it, then it’s a good thing no one knows about the mark on your hip,” Chanyeol replies, pulling out half of a sub sandwich from two nights ago. He shuts the fridge and smirks, because as much as he likes the idea of people seeing the mark on Jongin’s hip, too, he also likes that only he and Jongin know it’s there. Their own little secret.

Jongin makes a tiny squawk of embarrassment again and then grumbles, “You’re impossible,” before hanging up.

Chanyeol just laughs, bemused, and shoves his phone back into his pocket. He unwraps his sandwich and heads over to join Jongdae, flopping onto the couch and kicking his feet up onto the table.

“What’s that disgusting smile on your face for?” Jongdae demands, casting a quick glance at him.

“Nothing,” Chanyeol replies around a mouthful of food, and tries not to think too hard about when he’ll see Jongin next and where else upon his body he can leave another mark.



-



The thing about secret relationships, Chanyeol realizes, is that they don't work very well when only one person wants the secret to be kept. In the beginning, just a few months ago, it'd been okay. After Chanyeol realized the way he looked at Jongin was different than how he looked at everyone else, after he realized that Jongin's pretty smiles made his heart beat faster and he wanted Jongin to smile at him like that. He realized, somewhere between meeting Jongin through Jongdae at an off-campus party, finding him in the corner of his literature class at the start of the new semester, and catching lunch together most days afterward that Chanyeol liked Jongin more than he was ready to admit.

He liked how Jongin was always perpetually sleepy, dozing off against Chanyeol’s shoulder in the back of their lecture hall and smiling sheepishly afterward, how he doodled anime-esque characters into the corners of his notebooks when they tried to study in the library on the weekends, how he wore Spider-man t-shirts and practiced his dance routines in his seat, uncaring of the way people looked at him curiously. After Chanyeol wallowed for weeks because he was sure Jongin didn't like him the way he did, because even though they were friends, it was never the same as how Jongin was with Sehun and Baekhyun or anyone else.

But after all of that, he eventually gave into the feeling, and the fact that this was something that wasn’t going to just go away. And Chanyeol told him, casually one night when Jongin came over to work on a joint project for their literature class. Jongin looked at him, all shocked, and Chanyeol was quick to make it better. “Nothing has to change,” he said, “we can just be friends.”

It came as a surprise, then, a week later, when Jongin had reached for his hand, hidden under the table as they had lunch. He didn’t look at Chanyeol, just continued to talk with Sehun, but his thumb brushed over Chanyeol’s knuckles soothingly and he didn't let go until they had to leave.

“I like you, too,” he told Chanyeol, later, after walking with Chanyeol back to his apartment. “God knows why, honestly, because you're ridiculous and loud and--” Whatever else Jongin had thought of him fell short because Chanyeol kissed him, right there in the street in front of his apartment building.

Jongin gasped, and clutched the front of Chanyeol's shirt, and afterward, he'd asked if they could just keep it between themselves for awhile. Chanyeol had been so incredibly happy, happy that Jongin liked him, happy that Jongin’s mouth was just as soft as he'd always imagined, happy that Jongin was holding onto him like without him there he might crumple to the floor. So happy that he'd agreed, figuring it would maybe a week or two, and then it'd be okay to hold Jongin’s hand in public, call him his boyfriend to his friends.

Except it’s been three months and Chanyeol wants more. He doesn't want to worry about Sehun waking into the dorm room he shares with Jongin, doesn't care if Jongdae comes home to them making out on the couch. He wants to tell everyone he’s happy because Jongin makes him happy. And he does, even if their relationship isn't exactly the way Chanyeol wants it to be anymore.

When they’re together, just the two of them, it’s perfect. Jongin is all his. It's when they’re out with their friends that Chanyeol has to rein in the unpleasant rage that bubbles up in his stomach.

Some days are worse than others. Chanyeol has been spending too much time thinking about his relationship with Jongin and how he wants to bring up making it public. So it grates, a little, when Jongin drops his head onto Baekhyun’s shoulder and lets Baekhyun pet his hair while they’re gathered around a table in the cafeteria on a Thursday night. Chanyeol was eating dinner and studying on his own when Jongin, Baekhyun and Junmyeon showed up, quickly claiming the other seats at the table and dropping their backpacks onto the chairs. Jongin smiled at him, secretive, and patted his shoulder as he passed by to get food.

Now, Jongin sits across from him and barely pays him any attention. Which is fine, really, because Chanyeol doesn't need Jongin's attention all the time. He would, however, like it if Baekhyun would stop touching him.

"What's up with you?" Junmyeon asks, nudging Chanyeol's shoulder. "You've been so quiet."

Chanyeol shrugs, taps his pen against the open pages of his calculus book. "Just trying to get through this," he says, finally tears his gaze away from Baekhyun's fingers wrapped into Jongin's elbow. He gives Junmyeon a tiny smile, but it must show on his face, that it's not quite genuine because Junmyeon frowns.

"Do you need help?" he asks, scooting closer to look at the problem set Chanyeol has been working on.

He doesn't need help; calculus is one of Chanyeol's best classes, but Junmyeon's easy smiles do help distract him from the other unhappy thoughts in his head. "Thanks, hyung," he says with a real grin, and he leans over to steal some of Junmyeon's french fries.

Junmyeon laughs, shakes his head, and Chanyeol twirls his pen in his hands watching as Junmyeon back-reads a few pages to see where Chanyeol's at. His attention strays when someone kicks him under the table. He snaps up and glares at Baekhyun.

"What was that for?" he says, kicks back in his direction. Baekhyun jumps, surprised.

"What? Did I kick you accidentally?" he asks, and Chanyeol turns his gaze from Baekhyun to Jongin, who is frowning intensely at his plate, like his his half-eaten sandwich has offended him.

Chanyeol is a little confused because not two seconds ago was Jongin laughing with Baekhyun looking perfectly pleased. He slides his foot up the back of what he hopes is Jongin's calf, and Jongin shifts in his seat. He glances up at Chanyeol, meets his gaze for a short moment, and looks back down.

Frowning at his behavior, Chanyeol points at Jongin’s sandwich and says, “Are you gonna finish that?” Without waiting for an answer, Chanyeol swipes the sandwich and takes a big bite out of an end. Jongin squawks, reaching out to reclaim his dinner, but Chanyeol laughs around his mouthful and leans back.

“I was gonna eat that!” Jongin says, leaning across the table as far as he can, but Chanyeol scoots his chair away.

“Don’t be a dick, Chanyeol, give it back,” Baekhyun says. “You already ate anyway.”

Chanyeol ignores him, takes another bite of the sandwich, and there’s really not much left of it anyway, so he finishes it off heartily and grins. Jongin glares at him, but Chanyeol can tell there’s no real anger there, especially not with the way the corner of his mouth twitches up in amusement. He still seems displeased from whatever was on his mind earlier, but at least he’s not gloomily staring at half-eaten dinners anymore. Chanyeol drags his chair back up against the table and pats Jongin’s head.

Jongin swats at him, drawing away and pouting. Baekhyun looks at Chanyeol with a frown, then pushes his plate toward Jongin. “You can have some of my fries if you want,” he says, “I think I’m full anyway.”

"Are you sure?" Jongin says, and when Baekhyun nods, he grins happily and takes his plate, sets it atop of his empty one. "At least Baekhyun-hyung likes me." He looks at Chanyeol as he says it, eyes mischievous, but Chanyeol doesn't feel particularly amused. He just forces out a laugh and grabs his bottle of water to drown out the sour taste in his mouth, his stomach unpleasant as Baekhyun grins approvingly and coos at Jongin, brushing his bangs away from his face.

Chanyeol really has no right to feel jealous. Baekhyun and Jongin are friends. They've been friends before Chanyeol even met Jongin. Not to mention Baekhyun has this disgusting crush on the Chinese transfer student named Wu Fan that practically everyone knows about (except perhaps for Wu Fan), and despite the prickling worry, Chanyeol believes in the way Jongin feels about him. So it's not like Chanyeol has anything to worry about. Not really. And yet...

He’s not sure what compels him to do it, really, but he reaches out and grabs Jongin’s hand that’s sitting out on the table, clicking the top of the pen in his hand and pressing the tip against Jongin’s skin. By the time Jongin’s surprise fades away and he realizes what’s happening, Chanyeol’s already gotten his name inked across the back of Jongin’s hand.

“What’re you doing?” Jongin exclaims, yanking his hand away and staring down at Chanyeol’s handiwork. He probably only looks for a second, but to Chanyeol is feels like hours, because when he finally glances back up at Chanyeol, there’s something indecipherable in his gaze. Chanyeol expected maybe anger and annoyance because this, what Chanyeol just did, probably crosses that line of secrecy Jongin wanted to maintain. Instead he just looks at Chanyeol like he’s seeing him for the first time, curious and maybe a little uncertain. He bites his lower lip and rubs his thumb over Chanyeol’s name, and the ink smudges a bit, but Chanyeol knows he’s not trying to remove it. It’s the same way he tends to gently touch that mark on his hip.

“Chanyeol, seriously, what’s up with you?” Baekhyun says, and this time he actually does kick Chanyeol under the table, startling Chanyeol so much he practically jumps in his seat.

“Sorry, sorry,” he says quickly, looking away from Jongin who hides his hand in his lap and busies himself with eating. “I’m just...tired, I guess.” He scratches the side of his face and tries not to look back at Jongin, even though he can feel the heat of his gaze on him. He stuffs his pen into his calculus book and closes it with a snap, and Junmyeon looks up in surprise.

“Didn’t you want help?” he asks.

“It’s fine,” Chanyeol says, suddenly feeling the need to get away. The way Jongin looked at him earlier is still heavy on his mind, confusing and distracting, and he doesn’t think he can sit here without wanting to reach across and maybe write his name onto Jongin’s other hand, too. “I’m gonna go, maybe sleep early or something,” he says. He stuffs his things into his bag and hastily stands.

“Well, if you’re sure,” Junmyeon says, brows furrowed in worry. Chanyeol puts on his best fake smile and waves him off. Baekhyun stares at him rather curiously, and when Chanyeol catches Jongin’s eyes, Jongin is watching him closely, still gnawing on his lower lip. Chanyeol’s smile brightens as he looks at him, and Jongin’s eyes widen a bit, before he slowly smiles back, too. They’re okay. For now.

“I’ll see you later,” he says to all of them, even though he’s still only looking at Jongin. Jongin mouths, I’ll call you, when Baekhyun and Junmyeon wave at him and turn away, and he rubs his right palm over Chanyeol’s name on the back of his left hand. Chanyeol swallows thickly and nods, hoists his backpack over his shoulder and leaves.



-



"Do you know what time it is?" Chanyeol grumbles the next morning, leaning against the open door and peering at Jongin through his dark-rimmed glasses. "Let me tell you. It's seven. You know I don't have class until after noon on Fridays."

"But I do," Jongin says, slipping around Chanyeol and into the apartment. "In a hour. And I wanted to see you."

Chanyeol scratches the back of his neck, pleased by that despite how much he'd like to just crawl back into bed and sleep. He shuts the door and follows Jongin inside, rubbing his hands down his bare arms. He's only in a pair of boxer briefs and he should probably put on a shirt or something, but Jongin looks him up and down, all appraisingly, and flushes deep, so Chanyeol thinks he'll put up with the slight morning cold for awhile.

"I, um, brought some donuts," Jongin says, holding up the plastic bag in his hand as he drops his backpack onto the couch and then heads to the kitchen like he lives there. Chanyeol pushes that away because he doesn't have time or energy to think about how much he would like it if they lived together. "Is Jongdae home?" Jongin asks.

Chanyeol shakes his head. His bedroom door was wide open when Chanyeol shuffled past earlier and his room is empty which means he never came home that night. "Probably stayed over at Sunyoung’s."

"Good," Jongin says, and then turns around to catch Chanyeol's mouth in a kiss. Chanyeol gasps, surprised, but quickly winds his arms around Jongin’s waist to pull him in closer. Of course that’s when Jongin draws away, nose wrinkling as he says, “Gross, haven’t you brushed your teeth?”

“Hey, you’re the one who woke me up at seven in the morning just to eat donuts,” Chanyeol grumbles, trying to pull Jongin close again. Jongin just laughs, pushes at his chest, and Chanyeol reluctantly lets go.

“Put on a shirt, too!” Jongin hollers after him, but Chanyeol chooses to ignore that request. He rather enjoys the way Jongin will undoubtedly stare at him more, only to blush prettily in embarrassment when Chanyeol catches him looking.

By the time he’s freshened up, Jongin’s put the donuts onto a plate in the middle of the kitchen counter and filled two glasses with orange juice. He hands one to Chanyeol, who takes it with a smile but leans across the counter to kiss him, first.

“Better?” he asks, grabbing a bear claw from the pile and walking over to the small kitchen table he and Jongdae managed to snag from one of Jongdae’s neighbors who was looking to toss it out. One of the feet wiggles too much and they prop it up with some old books, but it makes due for their broke-ass college lifestyle. He slides into a chair and takes a bite from his donut.

“Much,” Jongin says with a smile. He leans against the counter and sips idly at his juice. After a few minutes of silence, he says, “I tried to call you last night but I think you must’ve gone to bed.”

Chanyeol nods slowly. He doesn’t remember any calls. “Probably. I really was tired.” Tired of thinking about his relationship with Jongin, about things he can’t have.

“It’s okay,” Jongin says. “I just...wanted to talk about something.”

“Oh?” Chanyeol says around a mouthful.

“Yeah.” Jongin sets his glass back onto the counter and then walks the few steps over to Chanyeol, who expects him to sit down with him. Instead Jongin climbs onto the chair he’s already in, straddling his lap and linking his hands around Chanyeol’s neck. Chanyeol gasps, his hands automatically finding Jongin’s waist, and he shifts a bit to get more comfortable under Jongin’s added weight. He kind of wishes he’d put clothes now, especially with the Jongin is staring so intensely at him.

Jongin’s wearing a loose-fitted tank top with a neck that scoops a bit too low and Chanyeol always frowns at them because he doesn’t like how it shows off so much skin. He’s sure Jongin wears them on purpose because of that, especially when they’re together, but he also knows Jongin hates the heat, and the weather’s been unrelenting these days. The hickey Chanyeol left on his neck isn’t visible at all, and he wonders unhappily if Jongin covered it up with makeup again. Brows furrowing, Chanyeol runs his hands along Jongin’s sides, and slowly lifts up the hem of his shirt to peek underneath.

His name is mostly faded from Jongin’s skin, but that mark he’d left there is still bruised wonderfully dark. He brushes his fingers across it and Jongin sighs, his hands behind Chanyeol’s neck pressing tight against his nape.

“Actually that,” Jongin says, “that’s sort of what I wanted to talk to you about.”

“This is about yesterday,” Chanyeol says, trying to keep the panic out of his voice.

“Yes,” Jongin says, “Kind of. I guess.” He licks his lips, slow, as he thinks, and Chanyeol doesn’t push him. His heart is beating loudly in his ears as he waits. He’s not entirely sure if this is a conversation he even wants to have. “It’s just…” Jongin is flushing now, and he looks about as uncomfortable talking about this as Chanyeol feels. “You really like doing that, don’t you?”

Uncertain, Chanyeol rubs circles into Jongin’s skin just underneath his shirt. “I guess I do,” he murmurs, eventually, and it’s the understatement of the year.

Jongin seems to think so, too. He quirks an eyebrow in amusement, but he thankfully doesn’t tease. “It’s cool,” he says, “it’s not like I don’t like it, you know.” He flushes deeper. “Like we’ve all got our kinks.”

Chanyeol knows that’s true. That Jongin likes it when he pulls on his hair or touches his neck softly as they make out. He’s learned that Jongin likes it when Chanyeol marks him like he has recently, because of the way his breathing quickens and he kisses Chanyeol more fiercely afterward, even from the way he blushes deeply when Chanyeol presses into the marks days later.

"I'm just wondering," Jongin says, "if there's something more to it than that. You've been acting a little...off lately, and after last night--"

"Does it bother you?" Chanyeol blurts out, feeling the sudden burning desire to know for real, if Chanyeol's strange fascination with marking him is actually upsetting Jongin. Because that's the last thing he wants, if it is.

"No," Jongin says firmly. "I just told you. I like it. When we're together, like this. It's okay." He smiles softly, reassuringly, and his fingers gently play with the short hairs along the back of Chanyeol's neck. "It's just, when we're in public...we can't explain that away."

Chanyeol has to force the words on the tip of his tongue down. That yes, they could, if only Jongin wanted to make their relationship known. It’s clear that he doesn't, though, or else he would say as much, and that's what hurts Chanyeol the most. But that's all on him. He's the one who can't deal with having a secret boyfriend, he's the one who can't push the unease away and focus on the good things about it. Jongin is perfectly fine the way things are. It's just Chanyeol who's a mess.

So he doesn't bring it up. Instead he just laughs and slides his hands up under Jongin's shirt and up his back. "All right," he says. "I'll be more careful. As long as you stop staring at me in public with that terribly intense look you get, like you wanna eat me."

Jongin squawks, turning red, and exclaims, "I don't do that!"

"I mean, I know I'm pretty irresistible but if you want this whole thing to stay secret, you're gonna have to work on that look," Chanyeol continues, the amusement he gets from Jongin's mortified face almost enough to mask his pain.

Jongin drops his head into Chanyeol's shoulder and grumbles incoherently into his skin, his hot breath sending shivers down Chanyeol's spine. Grinning, Chanyeol leans into whisper next to his ear, "Though I do like that look a lot."

A rumbling laugh falls from Jongin's lips and then he's pulling back, cupping Chanyeol's face in his hands and kissing him soundly on the mouth. Chanyeol's lips stretch into a wider grin as he reciprocates, tasting the sweetness of juice from Jongin's mouth and the sugaryness of his own half-eaten donut, and this, he thinks, this is okay. It's not entirely what Chanyeol wants, but when they're like this, it's easier to forget everything else. Jongin is warm and solid in his arms, his mouth slick with heat, and the tiny whimpering noises he makes fill Chanyeol's heart to the brim, and it's enough, he thinks, for now.

Jongin tries to pull Chanyeol in even closer, his kisses getting almost desperate, and there’s only so much space they have sitting like this on a chair, but Chanyeol likes it. Really likes it, how Jongin seems to want to mold their bodies into one. Chanyeol slides a hand down to Jongin’s ass, drags him forward, and the roughness of his jeans rub a little unpleasantly along Chanyeol’s bare thighs. But then Jongin is groaning, and that sound is wonderful, startling a gasp from Chanyeol as they grind against each other, slow and unrushed, even though Jongin has to be at class in less than half an hour.

Clearly that seems to be the last thing on Jongin’s mind right now and Chanyeol’s not really one for ruining a good thing, so he keeps quiet and focuses on Jongin in his lap, the building pressure in the pit of his stomach. And he’s so wrapped up in it, that it isn’t until Jongdae’s unmistakable voice exclaims, “Whoa,” does Chanyeol feel like someone just dumped a bucket of freezing cold water all over him with the way Jongin yanks backwards immediately like Chanyeol is diseased.

He can’t really get that far without falling straight off of Chanyeol’s lap and probably hitting his head on the table on the way to the floor, and Chanyeol is holding onto him so tight that Jongin can barely move anyway. He just leans as far back as possible, eyes impossibly wide and the flush of pleasure on his skin now deepening with horror.

Chanyeol wants to throw Jongdae out the door and lock it and never let him back inside, especially when he turns to find his roommate with this shark-like grin across his face, like he knew about this all along.

“So, good morning, I take it,” Jongdae says. Jongdae has obvious sex hair and there’s lipstick on the collar of his shirt, and Chanyeol could say something scathing back, but he’s more worried about how unhappy Jongin looks to care. He rubs his hand soothingly down Jongin’s back, and that seems to be enough to get him to jolt out of his stupor.

He blushes in embarrassment and scrambles off Chanyeol’s lap. “I-I should go,” Jongin says, not looking at either of them. “I have, uh, class. I have class.”

He’s running around Jongdae toward the door, and Chanyeol follows quickly after, punching Jongdae’s shoulder as he passes him just to wipe the grin off his face. Jongin’s struggling to get his shoes back on and Chanyeol picks his backpack up from the couch, walks over and grabs him by the shoulders.

“Hey, relax,” he says, a little worried about Jongin’s behavior. A little hurt, too, because Jongin is bolting out of here like he can’t believe he’s been seen making out with Chanyeol at all. But he pushes that away though, because it’s not important right now, forces Jongin to look up at him. He smiles. “Hey, it’s just Jongdae. It’s no big deal.” When Jongin gnaws at his lower lip and doesn’t answer, looking unsettled, Chanyeol slides his hands down his arms gently and adds with as much strength as he can muster, “I’ll tell him not to tell anyone.”

Jongin looks at him, really looks at him, like he’s trying to read Chanyeol’s mind through his eyes. It makes Chanyeol feel a little vulnerable, but he doesn’t look away, at least not until Jongin sighs, the tension leaving his body and he steps in close to Chanyeol and presses his forehead against his chest. “Thanks,” he says softly, and Chanyeol just hugs him.

“No problem,” he replies as cheerfully as he can. “And hey, you should come over tonight after your classes. Jongdae’s going home for the weekend, thankfully,” Jongin laughs against him at that, “and, I don’t know, we can hang out, order pizza and watch a movie or something.”

“All right,” Jongin says, and Chanyeol can feel his lips stretch into a smile. He pulls away, takes his backpack from Chanyeol and slides it onto his shoulders. “I’ll see you later then.”

Chanyeol grins, nodding, and smacks his ass as he walks out the door. Jongin yelps and throws him a glare, but then he laughs, that dumb looking one he does sometimes that has his eyes curving and all his teeth showing, and Chanyeol watches until he disappears around the corner with a final wave.

With a deep sigh, he shuts the door and runs a hand through his hair, and turns to find Jongdae standing behind him, eyebrows raised.

“So,” he says, drawing the sound out to be obnoxious.

“Yes, we’re together. Yes, we’ve kept it a secret. It’s been a few months, and can you please not tell anyone, Jongin doesn’t want people to know,” Chanyeol says, deadpan. He passes by Jongdae back to the kitchen. He needs to stuff his face with the rest of the donuts Jongin brought offer. A sugar-induced coma seems like a good idea right now.

“Do you want it to be a secret?” Jongdae says. “I’m not gonna pretend I didn’t hear anything just now, and even though you didn’t say it out loud, I could tell.”

“It’s not important.”

“Of course it’s important!” Jongdae says, as Chanyeol grabs the entire plate of donuts and heads back to his room.

Chanyeol really doesn’t want to talk about it, least of all to Jongdae. “You know you have lipstick on your shirt,” he says, a weak attempt at a distraction. It’s enough for Jongdae to look down, and that’s when Chanyeol slips into his room. “Just don’t tell anyone, okay?” he adds, and Jongdae frowns at him and doesn’t say anything, but Chanyeol knows he won’t. “Thanks,” he says, offering his friend a small smile before he shuts the door behind him.



-



There are few things that Chanyeol likes more than spending an evening with Jongin leaning against him, head resting on his shoulder, hands intertwined together in Jongin's lap. They're halfway through Sinister and Jongin, for all his love of scary films, still jumps at something unexpected, or clutches Chanyeol's hand a little tighter when he's spooked. It's adorable, to say the least, and Chanyeol welcomes it, a clear and easy distraction from everything else tumbling around in his brain.

He's seen this movie already so he's only vaguely paying attention to the screen, his eyes on Jongin instead. Face illuminated by the flashes of light from the television because Jongin insists there's no point in watching scary movies unless it's in the dark. He takes to rubbing his thumb over Jongin's knuckles, and Jongin presses his cheek against his shoulder, a tiny smile playing at his lips.

He glances up at him, then, and asks with amusement, "Are you even watching?"

"Of course I am," Chanyeol says, pretending mock offense. "Look, pretty sure he's gonna die right about now."

Jongin jumps, burying his face into the crook of Chanyeol's neck while Chanyeol laughs. Chanyeol nudges him, points toward the screen, "Wait, look, you have to watch this, ohhhh."

"Stop!" Jongin hisses, pulling his hand from Chanyeol’s to weakly punch him in the chest.

"Why do you insist on watching these movies when you get scared?” Chanyeol asks, though he’s definitely not complaining with the way Jongin is clinging to him now. An arm of his tank top has slid down his left shoulder, showing off more skin than it covers up, and despite the darkness i the room, Chanyeol can just make out the beginnings of an intense bruise along Jongin’s ribs. He grins a little to himself, remembering how it’d really taken them two tries to actually start watching the movie because Jongin’s tiny, pleased noises were too addictive, and Chaneyol didn’t want to stop until he’d had a chance to mark him again, somewhere where Jongin wouldn’t have to cover it up with makeup.

Jongin had laughed a little breathlessly afterward, muttering, “You’re so weird,” as he threaded his hands through Chanyeol’s hair, but when Chanyeol traced his tongue over the bite mark, Jongin moaned happily.

Now he can wrap his arm around Jongin’s waist and gently brush his fingers over that spot through his shirt and Jongin shudders his his arms. “I'm not scared!” Jongin insists then, and it takes a moment for Chanyeol to remember what they’re even talking about, “I'm just...easily startled.”

Chanyeol bites back his laugh. “Suuuure,” he says instead. He rubs his thumb over the mark once more before he slowly pulls himself away from Jongin’s grasp and to his feet. “Do you want something more to drink?” he asks, grabbing their empty cans of beer and bowl of popcorn.

Jongin looks up at him with a horrified expression like he can’t believe Chanyeol is leaving him alone to watch this movie. Chanyeol smiles, ruffles his hair and says, “Scream if you need me,” and Jongin’s face twists into a half-glare, half-pout, which Chanyeol also finds absolutely adorable.

He dumps the cans into the empty bowl and cradles it in his arms as he heads to the kitchen, catching Jongin pulling his legs up to his chest and watching the movie from between the safety of his fingers. Way too cute, Chanyeol thinks fondly, as he tosses the cans into the recycle bin and the bowl into the sink. He grabs another two cans from the fridge, and a bag of the sour cream and onion chips Jongin likes from the cupboard. They’re actually Jongdae’s but Chanyeol doesn’t care, even if Jongdae might grumble at him for eating all his food when he comes back on Sunday.

He hands the bag to Jongin who takes it happily, dropping his legs into a cross-legged position on the couch and placing the bag in his lap. Jongin ends up spilling more chips than eating them, falling out of his hands whenever he jumps, but at least it’s food and not a beer in his hand, like the one time Junmyeon was over and they all watched the Grudge and he spilled his drink everywhere. The couch smelled like beer for almost a week.

Thankfully it isn’t long until the movie ends, and Jongin is grumbling under his breath because he can’t decide if that was good or terrible. He munches on a handful of chips and Chanyeol just looks at him, amused, then gets up to quickly turn the light back on, squinting a bit at the sudden brightness. He flops back onto the couch, stretching out his legs to rest his feet upon the coffee table. He raises his arms over his head, rolls his neck from side to side and then drops his arms with a sigh into his lap.

“What do you want to do now?” he asks, nudging Jongin. It’s barely past midnight. They could probably watch another movie, play Assassin’s Creed or something. He’s been meaning to get Jongin to try Guitar Hero but Jongin scoffs at it and says it’s not a real video game, but Chanyeol knows from Yixing it's because he sucks at it.

Jongin tosses the bag of chips onto the coffee table and brushes the crumbs off from his shirt and jeans with a frown. Before Chanyeol can get up and pull out the PS3, Jongin is scooting back in close to him, linking their arms together and resting his head against his shoulder. Chanyeol smiles, leaning into him as Jongin slides his hand up from Chanyeol’s knee to his thigh.

“I have a few ideas,” Jongin says, voice suddenly low. His fingers trace the inseam of Chanyeol’s jeans. “You’re sure Jongdae went home, right? He isn’t gonna walk in on us again?”

Chanyeol laughs, tries not to remember the way Jongin bolted out of the apartment that morning, tries not to think of what he’d do if Jongdae did walk in on them doing something more than just kissing. “Unless his parents kicked him out because he’s failing chem, I doubt it.”

Jongin doesn’t seem to hear his comment, his gaze trained on his fingers which Chanyeol finds are more distracting by the minute, and adds, “I’m glad he seems to not have told anyone...At least I haven’t gotten any messages from Sehun or Baekhyun yet so…”

“He might be an idiot but he’s not a dick,” Chanyeol says, and he has to force himself not to sound annoyed. “I told him not to tell anyone. He won’t.”

“I know that,” Jongin says quietly, and he sounds so small all of sudden, Chanyeol wants to pull him even closer except the things he’s saying, what he’s implying, only makes anger bubble up under Chanyeol’s skin. “But, I’m--”

“But what?” Chanyeol snaps, louder than he meant to be. He doesn’t want to fight with Jongin but it’s like the words are coming out of his mouth without his consent, now. “What’d be so bad if he did tell them?”

Jongin pulls away from him slowly, drawing his arm out from Chanyeol’s and looking up at him with his brows furrowed. “What’s wrong?” he asks, cautiously, and Chanyeol feels terrible because he’s never raised his voice to Jongin like this. “I’ve been wondering, it’s like something’s been on your mind all night. Like you barely even watched the movie, you didn’t make any of your usual comments about the overacting or anything.”

Chanyeol lets out a frustrated sigh, pushes a hand through his hair and looks somewhere just above Jongin’s shoulder. He doesn’t think he can look at him directly when he says this. “I can’t...I don’t think I can do this anymore, Jongin.”

There’s a sharp intake of breath, and when Chanyeol glances at him, Jongin is staring at him, wide-eyed, like what Chanyeol said is more terrifying than the movie they just watched. “What?” he asks. He’s twisting the fabric of his tank top in his fists and he does that terrible thing where he stares at Chanyeol so intently Chanyeol can’t look away.

“This, this thing between us,” Chanyeol says, waving a hand in the air between them frantically like that will explain more than he can with words. “I don’t think I can do it anymore.” Jongin’s expression is slipping and slipping, into something less like horror and more like heartbreak and Chanyeol is quick to shake his head, realizing that what he’s saying sounds like he wants to break up and that’s the furthest thing from his mind. “No! No, I mean, keeping everything a secret. Is there a reason you don’t want people to know we’re dating? Are you ashamed or something?”

"What?! No!" Jongin exclaims, lurching backwards like Chanyeol’s words physically assaulted him. "No, Chanyeol, how can you even say that?"

"Well, nothing else really makes any sense," Chanyeol says. The anger is fading into confusion, and he scratches his fingernails down his arms, dropping his gaze to the sudden foot of space between them.

"I thought you were okay with it being a secret," Jongin whispers.

"It's been three months, Jongin," Chanyeol says, defeated. He thought he could talk about this but he's not sure if he can without getting angry again. He looks up at Jongin then, and his chest tightens like someone is stepping on him, trying to squeeze the air out his lungs. Jongin looks so distraught, eyes sadder than he's ever seen them, not even after Monsters Inc. when Jongin cried for ten minutes into Chanyeol’s shoulder. He wonders how he must look right now, unhappy and frustrated, and sighs. "I'm sorry. Nevermind. I don't want to talk about this anymore."

He’s halfway off the couch when Jongin leans over quickly and catches his wrist. "Chanyeol," he says, maybe pleads, pleads for Chanyeol not to be a coward, to just tell him what's on his mind. Except Chanyeol hates that Jongin can't tell, that it isn't obvious already from what he's said. That Chanyeol has to spell it out for him. That Jongin can't just say, it’s okay, we don't have to hide it anymore.

Jongin does none of those things, just looks up at Chanyeol through his lashes, lower lip tucked into his mouth, and Chanyeol just shakes his head and twists his hand out of Jongin’s grip.

"I think I’m just gonna go to bed," he says quietly. At the immediate sound of protest Jongin makes, he forces out a small laugh and reaches out to ruffle Jongin’s hair. He swallows down the thickness in his throat and adds, "It's okay. We’re okay. I just..I need to think."

Jongin doesn't look convinced, but slowly he nods. He doesn’t look like he wants to leave, rather like he wants to attach himself to Chanyeol and follow him into bed, but eventually he gets to his feet. He hesitates for a tiny moment before leaning in and pressing a shaky kiss to Chanyeol’s cheek. Chanyeol’s heart drops to his knees, but he manages to offer Jongin a small smile that he knows doesn’t quite meet his eyes.

"I'll see you tomorrow," Jongin says firmly, a promise, telling Chanyeol he has no choice in the matter. He leaves before Chanyeol can say anything, a quick wave and smile over his shoulder that’s more sad than anything else, and Chanyeol spends the rest of the night in bed, unable to sleep, the ghost of Jongin’s miserable kiss lingering on his skin.



part ii
Tags: p: kai/chanyeol, r: nc-17, type: fanfiction
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