riots: (Default)
k ([personal profile] riots) wrote2013-12-24 07:55 am

fic advent 2013: day twenty-two

for [personal profile] drainbamage954
pg, 1.1k words
"Xiuho - At a train station/Airport. Sweaters."

Joonmyun is so late. He rushes to pay the cabdriver, scattering change all over the place and eventually just giving up and throwing himself out of the car. If he’s lucky, he’ll have ten minutes to reach his train. It’s the last of the night and he needs to make it. His family doesn’t really celebrate Christmas, but his mother has made a tradition of these end-of-year dinners, and he hasn’t been able to see them in months. She nags him about working too much, and he always waves off her concerns, but this time, he thinks maybe she might have a point. After all, he was the one who’d worked late tonight, losing track of time while buried in paperwork. And now he’s paying the price.

He hoists his bag and jogs through the train station, shoes skidding on tiled floor wet with melted snow. Over the intercom, he hears a woman announce the last call for his train. Joonmyun swallows down the rush of dread and picks up his pace. He reaches the door just as the woman is turning to close the door. “I’m sorry,” he gasps, and though she looks a little exasperated, she waves him on. He thanks her profusely, bows, and then climbs onto the train.

It’s surprisingly crowded, this time of night, though Joonmyun shouldn’t really be surprised. It is Christmas Eve, after all. He finds a seat next to a young man who is neatly dressed in a Christmas sweater. He has beautiful eyes and a sweet mouth, and okay, maybe that’s part of why Joonmyun chooses to sit next to him. He settles in, and it’s only a matter of minutes before the train is moving. Finally, Joonmyun can relax. He can enjoy his ride and think about the end, about returning to Seoul and his mother’s cooking.

Or he would, if the guy he was sitting next to would stop staring. “Hi,” the man says. “I’m Minseok.”

“Kim Joonmyun,” he replies, and then he sticks out his hand, mostly out of habit. Minseok laughs a little but he takes it, shaking firmly. “Nice to meet you?”

“You don’t need to sound so uncertain.” Minseok has a book tucked in his lap, a novel, but his bookmark says he’s barely started it. Joonmyun is a little bit pleased that this stranger has found him more interesting. “Where are you headed, if I may ask? Home for the holidays?”

Joonmyun has taken a lot of train rides in his life, but he’s never really had a lot of people just strike up a conversation. Especially people this cute. He watches the way that Minseok licks over his lips, the uncertain way his smile pulls tight, and he wonders if maybe he’s lonely. “Yeah,” Joonmyun replies. “My family does dinner every year.” He doesn’t miss the way that Minseok’s smile slips a little bit. “I’m glad I caught this train, otherwise I’d be missing it.”

“Ah, lucky,” Minseok says.

Joonmyun waits, but Minseok doesn’t add anything. “What are your plans?” Joonmyun asks.

Minseok tips his head. His sweater is too big, and when he shrugs his shoulders, it’s like he’s trying to hide in the bulk of it. “I’m on my own,” Minseok admits. He shrugs again, clearly trying to play it off, but even Joonmyun can tell that it’s upsetting. “My family is in the United States this year, and I couldn’t afford to fly home.”

“Oh no,” Joonmyun says, genuinely sad. Nobody should have to be alone on Christmas. “I’m so sorry.”

“Ah, no,” Minseok waves a hand. “I didn’t mean to say that, sorry.” He rubs the back of his neck. “It’s just - I don’t usually do this.” He laughs a little, loudly enough that he attracts the disapproving gaze of an elderly businessman across the aisle. “I’ve never spent Christmas on my own, not even when I was at school. It’s strange.”

Now it makes sense. Joonmyun has always had his family to return home to. He’s always had a good relationship with his parents, his older brother - hell, the one time he’d run away from home, he’d asked his mother for permission first. He can’t imagine being in Minseok’s position. Missing Christmas is unthinkable. “I bet,” Joonmyun agrees softly. “That must be pretty hard.”

“Sorry,” Minseok says again. “It’s just - I guess you looked pretty nice.” He laughs. “And I’m a little bit drunk. It was my last chance to see my friends before the holidays.”

Minseok is cute. Joonmyun likes the sharp lines of his eyes and the softness of his cheeks, his small hands and his big sweater. That’s why Joonmyun turns to him with an easy smile and asks, “How long are you in Seoul?”

It’s a bit reckless. It’s the kind of thing that Joonmyun definitely Does Not Do, and yet, here he is. “Really?” Minseok asks warily. “I mean, don’t you have family stuff?”

Joonmyun shrugs. He does, but he’s sure that his mother won’t mind if he goes out for a few hours one day. “I can make time,” he says. He hesitates, and then he ducks his head. “Especially for someone as cute as you.”

“Wow,” Minseok says, and Joonmyun balks. Maybe he’s misjudged, maybe this is the last thing Minseok wants right now, maybe he should find another seat for the rest of the ride. “That helps,” Minseok adds. The corners of his lips curl up, and relief seeps into Joonmyun once more. “Do you always go around making dates with strangers?” Minseok asks.

“No!” Joonmyun protests, laughing. No, he doesn’t make dates with strangers, but Joonmyun has always had such a soft spot for strays. “Just the cute ones.”

Minseok’s smile now is genuine and wide, showing a mouth of small, white teeth. “Wow, thanks,” he says.

They exchange numbers before they get off the train, and the winter night is cold and bitter. “I’ll be counting on you,” Minseok says, an undercurrent of something needy beneath his words.

He doesn’t have to worry. “I won’t let you down,” Joonmyun says firmly, and he squeezes Minseok’s hand for a second. Then he hears his brother shouting his name. He turns to wave to him, then looks back at Minseok. “I’ll call you tomorrow.”

Minseok nods, and then he waves him off. “I won’t keep you,” he says. “Tomorrow.”

He jogs off towards a cab, and then Joonmyun turns to find his brother. “What’s got you smiling like that?” his brother asks, and then he shakes his head, slinging an arm over Joonmyun’s shoulders. “C’mon, better get home. Wait til you hear about the spread Mom has planned for tomorrow.” Joonmyun lets his brother steer him to his car, a hand pressed self-consciously to his lips. He’s so glad he didn’t miss that train.

(Anonymous) 2014-01-11 03:07 am (UTC)(link)
mmm there's not a lot of xiuho around and this was super cute. :)
thanks for writing!