Word Count: 2k+
Summary: Like lost children, again we separate, and the only thing remaining is pain...
Hold me like a compass.
Luhan is Ethereal.
When he reaches for Minseok, Luhan's cold fingertips drag gently across his skin, curiously mapping out each mole, every luminous star that had made it's home on his smooth skin and decided to stay. Though by now, Luhan knows Minseok's body more than he should, more than Minseok knows his own body.
Warmth oozes listlessly out of Luhan's grasp and thickly twines around Minseok's pale forearm. His long eyelashes flutter pretty as the first spring flower in a gentle breeze when he beams at the older male. Minseok grins back, all teeth and gums, but his eyes don't shine the impossible way Luhan's do.
Minseok's eyes don't shine glimmering loyalty and absolute love, nor do they shine in such a manner that is akin to morning dew glittering radiant at dawn. Instead Minseok's eyes shine deep admiration and burn addictive cognac astoundment.
The two memorize the adoration in the other's eyes as they stand on stage amongst the other members, amongst cheering fans. The two memorize the adoration in the others' long after they pile into the van and head off to the hotel.
The two memorize the adoration in each others' eyes long after the rest of the members have gone to sleep and it's just the two of them, incorrectly playing whatever card game they could think of to distract Luhan from the thought of flying once more in the morning.
They will need it.
Teach me how to read these broken lines.
Luhan is Soft.
Luhan's voice is gentle and soothing as he repeats drill after drill of Minseok's Mandarin vocabulary. Minseok's senses are heightened and his eyes are closed underneath the blindfold but he pays attention. He pays attention to the sweet lilt of Luhan's voice, pays attention to his quiet breaths, pays attention to the heat of Luhan's bare thigh pressed against his own.
Luhan's palms are sweaty when he reaches for Minseok and traces the tip of his pointer finger on the chinese characters, and later the pinyin.
Luhan doesn't apologize for the sweaty palms, and he continues to hold onto Minseok's hand long after the drills have finished, long after the blindfold is removed from over Minseok's eyes and instead placed over Luhan's own.
The two hold hands while Luhan is panting heavily against Minseok's collarbones as the older fills him to the brim. The two hold hands as Minseok searches for release and finds a home along with it where his nose is nestled in the smooth junction where Luhan's shoulder and neck meet.
The two hold hands long after he inhales Luhan's scent, his presence, and stores this memory alongside countless others.
They will need it.
Hold me like a lover.(And never ever go)
Luhan is Earnest.
Luhan's cheeks are flushed as he dashes over to Minseok, picks the smaller man up, and twirls them around fervently. They pay no mind to the grass stains copying over onto each others' jerseys. They pay no mind to the new grass stains when they topple over and land on the slightly damp ground, dark sloppy mud squishing pleasantly against their body mass. The cheers and yells from their teammates don't reach their ears as the two cling onto each other with desperation, with pride, with well wishes. They refuse to let go.
Minseok's cheeks are just as red, if not more, when Luhan shamelessly yells out to all who would listen, yells out to the entire world, that Minseok is his friend, Minseok is the winner, Minseok is the best. Minseok wants to turn those opinions into facts, wants to switch his name with Luhan's. But Luhan's name is thick on his tongue, stuffy cotton in his throat, choked sobs as tears trail down his cheeks because Luhan is proud. Luhan is supportive and Luhan is lovely.
Luhan and Minseok are on opposing teams, but almost as if it was instinctual, they cheer for the other undoubtedly. The two always cheer for the other, support and love the other, no matter what side they are on. The two cheer for each other long after the game.
The two cheer for each other long after they are separated.
They will need it.
Tell me, when it's over,
Luhan is Sincere.
His eyes were downcast as he led Minseok away from the other members and to their shared hotel room, but Luhan's eyes don't budge from Minseok's own. Luhan's fearful eyes don't move an inch when he tells Minseok that he needs out, when he asks Minseok whether this is the right thing to do.
Minseok doesn't beg him to stay, he doesn't beg him to change his mind, nor does he beg Luhan to negotiate. Instead, Minseok just kisses him like honey, slow, gentle, and thick. Instead Minseok just thanks Luhan for his time, reminds him that this is not over, they are not over. Luhan isn't sure if the means the two of them or the entire group.
But he figures it's both while he stretches Minseok open for the first time, while he enters Minseok for the first time. He finds a home where his once cold fingertips begin to press bruises against Minseok's hips, where his soothing voice whispers everything and nothing under the sun, the stars, the moon into Minseok's ears. This home is not Beijing, but he would not mind returning to his home in Minseok, with Minseok, of Minseok.
Luhan finds a home in and of Minseok, that doesn't mind the wait, and will help the two become patient.
They will need it.
Promise that you'll always keep me in mind.
Luhan is Unwavering.
Luhan's eyes shine with unshed tears that are far brighter than the moon and the stars, but he will not cry. He and Minseok will not cry. They have slipped their farewell into each other with small doses of fleeting touches, tight embraces, endless grins, pats on the head, but also by simply being there.
Luhan's nose is red as he sniffles underneath the roar of cheering fans, but he does not think about how he will miss Minseok. He doesn't think about soccer with Minseok, doesn't think about cafes and shopping with Minseok. He doesn't think about any of that right now. Instead he thinks about the slow and overwhelming burn of Minseok's liquid cognac eyes lit aflame by the his golden ocean.
Minseok's grin is luminous as he chases the younger around the stage, smacks him upside the head with a heart shaped pillow and dashes away, Luhan instinctually following Minseok no matter where he may lead them or where they may end up. Sehun's voice is far away and distant as he, Jongin, and Tao cling to each other giggling and recording the two oldest members before sending the video to their group chat, posting the video on as many social networking sites as possible. Perhaps because he knows about Luhan as well, or perhaps because he just knows that...
They will need it.
Burning like a soldier,
Luhan is Glorious.
He doesn't reply to Minseok's messages for days out of self-inflicted guilt, although the other members have told him countless times that it’s okay, they understand, it’s okay, it’s okay. The fans have told him countless times that it’s okay, they’re proud, it’s okay. He did the right thing, it’s okay. They still love and support him, they always will and it’s okay.
Minseok’s constant daily messages haven’t yet told him that what he did is okay, and that he is proud, and that he expects Luhan to become much healthier, much happier. Because they don’t have to, because Luhan already knows. Instead, Minseok’s messages tell Luhan about how the other members are doing, about how some of the fans (no matter how hard they try not to) look at him with pity in their large, scarily observant eyes. Minseok’s messages tell him that he’s finally completely off of the diet he gave himself when Wolf era began, because he wants to become healthy with Luhan.
But Luhan never replies, is unusually distant, strangely inaccessible and cold with Minseok and he doesn’t really know how to take it other than in stride. Still, Minseok doesn’t stop and relishes in how out of place he feels when he’s the one devoting a majority of his attention to the other, doting on the other, when it used to be the other way around.
Luhan and Minseok don’t feel okay. They feel far too hot in all the wrong places and the eyes of the public burn much harsher, much brighter than they used too. They burn with rage and betrayal and sympathy. They don’t want burning sympathy, they simply want to burn, and burn bright.
The first time Luhan replies is several weeks after the initial leave and it isn’t much of a reply at all and is more so of a picture of Luhan and his parents, smiling dazzlingly, happily. They’re beautiful. And best of all they’re okay, Luhan is okay.
Minseok replies with a picture of him and the members beaming brilliantly, and supposes that he’s okay, as well.
When December rolls around, news gets out the Minseok will be serving his mandatory time in the army for two years. He makes a few posts on instagram, and he makes a post and replies to a few comments on the official global fanclub. But most of all he sends Luhan as many pictures of himself as possible the day before he departs, in turn Luhan sends him pictures of the presents for the other members. Luhan sends them in anonymously through fansites, and Minseok can’t help but snort at how some of the people who made them physically uncomfortable are the ones Luhan trusts the most right now. But Luhan doesn’t have any other way of getting letters and presents to the members without someone knowing it was him and chucking them. And so, he has no choice, it doesn’t matter how uncomfortable and risky this is....
They need it.
I'll find my way to you and save the day.
Luhan is Strong.
Luhan’s will to stay is strong against the crowd of screaming teenage girls at another one of Exo’s visits on Happy Camp. He has one of countless masks on and he sits in the front, close enough for the members and MCs to recognize him with pleased, gleaming eyes and secret smiles, but not close enough for the cameras to focus in on him.
Luhan does not laugh when Chanyeol makes mistakes and his deep voice rumbles sloppy syllables, he does not smile sweetly at Tao when he whines about not winning a game, and he does not tease Yixing when he bows a solid ninety degrees and once again proclaims himself the Changsha Prince, Changsha’s Pride. Luhan claps politely, stares into each members’ eyes as if it’s the last thing he’ll do.
Joonmyeon’s chestnut eyes are hard and determined as he tries not to ruin the little script they’ve been given and speak about Luhan. Luhan knows his words would have been sweet with a kick if he’d been able to speak about Luhan freely. The MCs bring up the fact that Minseok had sent over a video message from the military base. His Mandarin improved greatly and the sweet lilt in his voice paired with Beijing’s signature hard R’s that Luhan had pressed into his skin affect Luhan more than he would like.
He’s mindful of the nine pairs of eyes on him when he leaves in the middle of Minseok’s message, waves his hand slightly in a familiar signal the members used to use to show that they’d going to the bathroom. But that is not where he’s going, and to be very honest he doesn’t know where exactly he’s going as he steps out of the studio and merely wanders the streets. Luhan refuses to pay mind to how much deeper Minseok’s airy voice has gotten from all of it’s recent use, refuses to pay mind to the way Minseok’s tongue wraps sharply around syllables with ease.
After all, they won’t need it.