title: quintessential sparkles in the dark
um, because vrilly let me do whatever I wanted with this and we were joking and she said teenagemutantninjaturtles!yoosu and then I suddenly had a flashback to being a small child and I said to myself: ‘what did I watch back in the old days? …Ah-hah!’ And it was SUPPOSED to be fluffy but I did a one-eighty and it came out weird and I think I might have killed them both at the end, I don’t know. HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY VRILLY-VRIL.
And yes I know the amount of detail and roundabout way of making points is bizarre and annoying. SHUT UP.
You’ve heard people say it was one big explosion.
But you were there, you experienced it, you know it was really more of a pulse sort of thing, like a heart of a star giving birth to another, smaller and less meaningful heart or –
thumpthump; you were in existence, then,
thumpthump; you could breathe, then,
thumpthump; you could see.
So on and so forth, just like that.
Yoochun is there before you, tells you that you are number four and he is number three and there is probably a number five to soon follow you.
You peer up at him and ask him, “what?”
He smiles, sorrowful and laughingly and bitter all at once, and takes your hand with great care. “Get up. Professor probably will want to know you’re ready.”
sugar and spice and everything nice and… echoes in your head, but you dismiss it.
You really remember the look in Yoochun’s eyes that day.
It takes a matter of days to learn everything you’re supposed to know, to catch up on years you don’t really have.
Through Yoochun you meet Jaejoong (lanky and thin and confident, a challenging gaze and stubbornness that overcomes) and Yunho (righteous and thoughtful, compassionate and a gentle spirit that seeps down through his bones and right down into what you’d consider his soul) and the three of them care for you, lead you, help you catch up even though you are still a blank slate waiting to written on, waiting to be told what to be.
The fifth, Changmin, joins your ranks soon enough, as promised, as Yoochun had said, and you find him sultry and guarded and too too smart and dreaming to be and become much more than he is.
You kind of like him because of that. Not as much as you like Yoochun, though: there often seems to be no more to Yoochun than dreams and cigarettes and softness and a quiet melody that warps and evolves with his moods and thoughts and the inflections and lilts of instinctual intellect and maybe you like that more than the promise of hidden sharpness and barbs waiting to be thrown in self defense.
Still, you admit you are confused about most of everything, about why you are what you are; alive.
Yoochun whispers to you that you are all products of experiments behind the Professor’s back, who announces grandly that he will be monitoring you to see if the results are stable and as wanted.
You are just like everyday people, look just like the mailman and the guy who delivers the newspaper and the trashmen, all who drive past the house and do their jobs like good little citizens and good little human beings with a purpose. So you don’t understand why someone, anyone, would spend so much time and effort on something that can’t even compare to what can be found everywhere. You all certainly don’t have purpose like that.
“I feel like we don’t have a reason to be here, sometimes.” Changmin mutters into Jaejoong’s shoulder, where his face is pressed and the exhale of breath is laced with; half connotations about existence, words too big to fit properly in your mouth with drawn out definitions that confound you, and Yunho shoots him a disapproving look – how dare you think that, it says, right along with, I don’t want to believe in that, ever.
Jaejoong simply shrugs. “Maybe. It’s possible.”
Yoochun snorts, “Well, the Girls were years before our time and they had a definite reason, and now it’s the coming of age millennium, so surely we have a purpose. Maybe an even greater purpose than them.”
You lean on him and think that over. The lot of you could never compare to any prior experiments’ worth, not to complex atom bonding and super abnormal DNA construction wrapped in human flesh. You’re not that enhanced and you’ll never do something as grand as saving the world – maybe, you think, maybe the best you yourself can do will be to become someone’s mockingbird for the rest of your life. You really really do like to sing, so you’d love to weave words and emotions together in a gentle and caressing melody to make someone’s day for the rest of your life for your existence’s point.
“I think you said some of that wrong.” Is all you offer of your thoughts.
Yoochun glances at you in a demanding way, trying to work out if you are agreeing or disagreeing. You feel like you are truly doing neither, but it’s Yoochun.
So you send him a smile brighter than the sun and too sweet for words. “But I like to think we have a purpose. I’m not pessimistic like Minnie.”
Changmin whaps you in the head and you stick your tongue out at him when Yoochun protects you bravely by kicking Changmin in the side in a very donkey-like manner. Jaejoong laughs at you before tackling Changmin and dragging a protesting but giggling Yunho down with him.
(You don’t know it just quite yet, not amidst your dreams and fantasies of belonging to someone who cares for you like you matter, but this is the closest thing you will ever feel to family.)
Unsurprisingly enough, Jaejoong is the first one to leave and you think, of course it’d be him because he was always the painfully good looking one, like a porcelain doll that couldn’t be broken.
It’s like this: one day he is there, the next, he is not.
The Professor is good to you all, tells you that Jaejoong will be someone’s, a rich someone who lives too far away, eye candy for the rest of his life.
Changmin shakes his head. “What a pity.” He says with apparent distaste and keeps on scribbling meaningless notes in his journal. You speculate absentmindedly what he writes about in it.
Yunho’s smile is brittle and the worry behind it is not even concealed. “You mean like…?”
The Professor is quick to wave his hands to reassure, (and you notice the wrinkles, on his palms, on his knuckles, up his arms, on his face, and realize – he’s getting old. With the Girls and now you all, how many years has it been and how old is he getting? He should stop all of this soon, should think about retiring and stop trying to please everyone around him.)
“No, not like that, never like that, Yunho, I was promised, and so I promise you, that it wouldn’t be like that. He’ll be able to cook for himself and other people and wear pretty expensive clothes and do whatever he likes wherever he likes unless he’s on the clock, and don’t you think that’s so like Jaejoong?”
You nod, because it is, and Yoochun frowns and grabs your hand. You feel the trembling and the fear and wonder, what is Yoochun so afraid of about this?
He only grumbles, “This is stupid.” as an explanation.
Changmin is the next to go.
You all go to bed like usual and, in the morning, there is the beeping of the alarm, Yoochun burying his head under the pillow in an attempt to get away from the sunlight streaming through the window, Yunho sighing as he pulls himself up into a sitting position without opening his eyes, an empty bed positioned directly under the AC unit, and no Changmin.
“Someone wanted an assistant teacher at the University in the City.” The Professor supplies helpfully and you eye his graying hair across the breakfast table – a little surprised as to when it got there and why haven’t you noticed before? – as you nibble on your egg.
It doesn’t taste nearly as good as it did when Jaejoong always used to help with the food, it hasn’t since he left and never came back and you suppose you’ve gotten use to the way there is too much salt and not enough pepper and is a little undercooked in the middle. Changmin’s leaving has just brought back the shock and the thoughts of how it used to be, but that’s okay, you’ll get over it soon enough.
Yunho smiles weakly into his glass and Yoochun places his hand on your thigh, keeps it lightly sitting there all through breakfast(and you pretend it’s emanating happiness rather than being a burdening overprotective thing).
“That’s perfect,” Yunho murmurs, half to himself and half to the rest of you, “Minnie always loved being a smart aleck and talking, am I right?”
“Can we, you know, ever visit him? Either of them?” You ask, because you do miss them like a phantom ache that almost can’t be identify, like eating ice cream too fast and feeling the leftover cold sink agonizingly slow into your teeth.
Professor tilts his head and thinks. “…Not…under normal circumstances…no.”
“Yunho,” Yoochun hisses when he corners you in the bathroom, “Is gushing too much about how happy he should be for them to see. To really get it.”
You blink. “…I don’t think I get it either, then, if you’re upset about it. I’m happy for them. They get do what they like to do. You should be happy for them too. Maybe you just miss them? We all do. And will.”
And then, as an afterthought, “I’ll miss you when it happens.”
Yoochun shakes his head furiously. “No – well, yeah, I miss them and that was just it at first, but then I started to use my head and think. Think, Junsu, just think about it.”
You don’t get it, all you sense is that Yoochun’s anger is like a fleeting breeze, gusting its way from one place to the other and sure to be short lived. You are just an outlet for it, one of the few, and he’s optimizing you quite well.
You wonder why, at this moment of tense silence settling awkwardly on the floor around your feet and among the dust, you feel like what he really wants to do is press you against the wall and kiss you.
Yunho leaves for someone who needs a permanent dance partner equipped for worldwide travel and fast paced learning and he’s perfect for that and then it’s just you and Yoochun.
“Chunnie, what do you want to do?” You ask, fingers delicate over his cheekbones because he’s not eating and the tears keep coming at sudden random bouts that you can’t predict or do anything about to help heal.
He laughs, short and rueful, and slides a hand over your wrist. “I want.”
And he pauses, which stretches and stretches into a stop, and he tilts his head against your pressing digits, like a curious child lost in the flurry of panicked forced calm and comfort.
The next few days are awkward and painstakingly sluggish and you wonder if you had said something wrong that day. It never happens, not with you and Yoochun, you know each other too well by this point for it to happen, but, well, maybe it finally has and if so…
It really hurts you, in a place deep and down low and normally protected. You never actually knew you had a place like this inside you, and it’s thrilling to realize you do, but still, it hurts and you have an aversion to pain you can’t do anything about.
Yoochun picks it all right back up (the conversation, your heart, everything) with little warning and shining defiant eyes.
“What I want to do most is spend forever with you.” He says in a hush of a voice because he knows it is something he is never ever supposed to say. But you can tell he’s wanted to say it more than anything for the longest of time and so he has and now what is anyone going to do about it?
There is a heat, fast and furious, spreading over and through your body, and you feel like you’ve been waiting your whole life to hear that.
And you didn’t even realize it –
So you leave, together. Simple as that.
It’s not planned, starts out in the dark of night, hands roaming over planes of soft skin and lips fitting together as tender and desperate and perfect fitting as puzzle pieces finding each after a long wait, escalates with little nips and mouthed words that make no sense when strung together and oh yes, yoochun, i love you, oh god.
When the two of you lay in an aura of afterglow, all quiet and non-imposing and everything it should be and more, you really get it, realize that you aren’t supposed to be like this, this is in no way the purpose the world expects of you.
You roll over and tap urgently on Yoochun’s arm and he looks at you in a way that tells you that of course he already knows. He’s been two steps ahead of you the whole time (because he was there before you, sugar and spice and everything nice and).
“There’s no time, you know.” He tells you, like it’s no big deal but the grimace on his face in the low light declares otherwise, “I could wake up tomorrow and you could be gone. Like Changmin.”
With a nod, a nervous giggle, and a quick kiss to his lips, you slip out of bed and creep to the chest of drawers against the wall (only two have anything remotely personal left in them and now every move you make feels restricted and watched, feet too loud against the carpet and breathing too uneven and traitorous proof that you are not asleep as you should be) to show that you understand.
He grins and gets up to go to your closets. “I always did like you best, Susu.”
You smile right back at him.
And maybe you don’t amount to much even with the sum of your wholes added together, and maybe you truly do have no purpose.
But as you savor and bask in the warmth of the sunlight on your back and of Yoochun’s arms around you as you both lay as a tangle of limbs and of love in a field of grass far far away from where you started and miles off the side of the road accompanied only by the slow and steady drip drip of life beneath you, you know that this is happiness (even if others wouldn’t consider it even half as much).
(((a/n: ………yeah, i definitely killed them. the ‘slow and steady drip drip of life’ is their blood, so. yeah. THE REST IS UP FOR YOUR INTERPRETATION, THE END, I AM SO SO SORRY.)))