This is my first time writing a Suju fanfiction as I’m quite new to the fandom. I’m also not sure as to how this story will be received but this has been brewing in my head for quite a while now. this story has been heavily inspired by Marilyn Scott’s The Last Day.
The start of love is always blissful and in contrast, the end of that first love comes with pain.
That was what Kyuhyun learned one September afternoon towards the end of summer. He stood against the rough bark of a tree, staring at one of the benches with peeling white paint and listening to Kim Ryeowook trying to start a decent sentence.
“Is there something wrong?” Kyuhyun muttered as he watched the smaller man lacing and unlacing his fingers. His mind seemed to be concocting a believable, yet disturbing scene quite like the ones he see in cheesy romantic movies about breaking up. Kyuhyun shook his head in an attempt to deny what his instincts are telling him.
“Ryeowook?” he called and the other man flinched a little at the sound of his voice.
There was an eternity of pregnant pause before Ryeowook apparently found the courage to say two words: “It’s getting tiring,”
A nameless bird chose that moment to spread its wings and took flight towards the yellowish afternoon sky, adding to the melancholy atmosphere. That was when Kyuhyun knew that it was over.
Over… an easy word to say but one that entails years to swallow, at least for him.
One year later Cho Kyuhyun still pouts as he looks outside the window, looking at the same melancholy sky.
The sun had started sinking into the fiery orange horizon and a late summer wind was blowing gently, sifting through the barely browned leaves. There is a certain scent in the air telling him that summer is almost over and he dislikes the feeling.
He had always hated it when September comes. It was like a monster, eating away the supposed adventure that came with summer and Kyuhyun hates it when the adventure ends. September, for him, is a month he’d rather erase from the calendar.
Sighing, he turned around and glanced at the opened laptop on his study table. The screen is filled with traces of the game he had been playing but had apparently lost. The solitary clock on his bedside table reads 5:15 pm.
“This is boring,” he muttered as he took his coat. The wind had started to become chilly in the afternoon and Kyuhyun is not one to endure the cold.
With a loud click of the lock, he turned the knob twice to make sure the door was indeed securely locked then he proceeded down the rickety stairs leading him outside the building that he so lamely calls “apartment”. The emptiness of the doorway still leaves a hollow feeling inside him.
“Ryeowook used to wait for me right here,” something inside him muttered and in spite of himself, Kyuhyun smiled bitterly. “Ryeowook won’t come back, get over it” he whispered, causing the cleaning lady to shoot him a weird look.
Outside, the loud honking of the cars assaulted his ears. The busy Seoul street was never a beautiful sight for him. He walked slowly, hands in his pockets, feeling the roughness of the spare change he had already forgotten. His feet almost automatically headed towards the subway. Behind him, he could hear two young lovers talking about how they wanted to light sparklers that night since summer is quickly passing by.
Kyuhyun smirked. Ryeowook used to like lighting sparklers at the rooftop of Kyuhyun’s apartment. They would wait until the summer sky becomes dotted with twinkling stars and light a couple of sparklers Ryeowook purchased. They would exchange a toast of Soju, make love and giggle under the covers the following morning.
That was a year ago, when Ryeowook still loves him. He had been Ryeowook’s first love (or so, as Ryeowook claimed). Ryeowook had also been the first for Kyuhyun, and he had definitely loved the man. When Ryeowook broke up with him one September afternoon, Kyuhyun had started to hate September.
“It’s getting tiring,” Ryeowook had silently said that day, his head bowed low and his fingers laced together. Kyuhyun couldn’t remember what he had actually said, but he must have agreed to the break-up because after that, their relationship had been officially over. Ryeowook must have mentioned about how Kyuhyun had no dreams and the fact that he had left his family and dropped out from the university and does not care for anyone but himself. But Kyuhyun does not want to remember anymore. All he knew is that Ryeowook had broken up with him.
And it hurts like hell.
Cursing under his breath, he glared at a man standing like a frozen block of ice in front of the subway train.
“This is not the right place to ponder why your hair dye faded a lot, so move,” he snarled as he boarded.
The man seemed to have come to his senses and took a step behind Kyuhyun. Ignoring the faded-blonde-haired guy, Kyuhyun sat quietly in one corner, trying to reason out why his life has suddenly taken a wrong turn. The subway station may indeed, be a place to ponder on life’s stupid questions.
Lee Sungmin stood like a wooden statue in front of the opened subway train, lost in a deep thought. He had been unconsciously playing with the strap of his bag, thinking about what he should do with his upcoming thesis topic proposal, when a man muttered something about faded hair dyes to him.
He touched his hair as he entered the subway train and sat in front of the snarky man. For a few minutes, he stared at the tousled-haired guy, battling with the gnawing feeling that he looked familiar.
“Staring is rude unless you’re looking for trouble,” the lanky man snarled at him and Sungmin murmured a silent apology. Resting his head against the side walls, he resumed his reverie about the thesis proposal. These are the moments when he admits to himself that being a Broadcast Communication student sucks like hell.
“I should have just studied music,” he thought. He had been thinking the same thing over and over as he went through four years of university studies, listening to boring lectures about broadcasting. He was never really the “media type”. He is the type to sit quietly in his room, playing guitar or singing old love songs about broken hearts.
“But singing old love songs about broken hearts will not get you anywhere,” his father had said in one of the family discussions about his future. Being the youngest child really is a pressure sometimes and being born in a family of achievers equally sucks. In the end, Sungmin was forced to study broadcasting. It is not something he liked, but it is not something he hated either.
His roommate Eunhyuk had repeatedly told Sungmin that he is really intelligent and it does not matter if he doesn’t like his major as long as he’s getting superb grades. But Eunhyuk is a happy-go-lucky idiot who can be happy with whatever life has to offer him. Sungmin likes him but Eunhyuk has no definite goals, and Sungmin has lots of them.
He sighed and jumped a little as his cellphone vibrated in his pocket.
“Hyung,” his cousin Ryeowook’s gentle, pitchy voice glided in his ears as soon as he said “hello”. “Where are you?”
“Oh Wookie, I’m almost there. Give me around fifteen minutes,”
“Ah. Okay. Just call if you’re already in front of the bar, okay?”
Sungmin smiled in amusement as he heard another man’s voice, cooing Ryeowook to get off the phone. Ryeowook gently giggled and told him that his cousin is on the phone and some guy named Yesung should learn how to wait. There were more giggles until Ryeowook realized he’s still talking to Sungmin.
“Oh hyung, sorry about that. I’ll wait okay? You have to meet him.”
After Sungmin agreed, he returned the pink cellphone in his pocket and gave out a loud sigh, attracting a few curious glances.
Ryeowook and Sungmin had been really close. If Sungmin were to be completely honest with himself, he would say that Ryeowook acted more like a brother to him than a cousin. Ryeowook is around three years younger than him but that didn’t deter them from spending their childhood together.
Last night, Ryeowook had called and asked him if he would come to some bar. When Sungmin asked why, he simply said that there’s someone Sungmin should meet and Sungmin instantly knew what it was about. His cousin is in love again.
Ryeowook is not the type to broadcast his love story to the whole world and Sungmin never even knew that his cousin have had a boyfriend more than a year ago. He only learned of it when Ryeowook came crying to him one night, muttering how he thinks he’s evil in between sobs. Sungmin had comforted him and thinking about it now, he had felt more than pity for Ryeowook.
Sungmin had envied him.
Ryeowook was crying because of love… that must mean that Ryeowook had once been in love while Sungmin… Sungmin spent all his life trying to please his family, studying and studying so he could get good grades. He has never been in a relationship before, never held hands, never kissed, never whispered sweet words.
He has never been in love.
Sungmin sighed once again and his gaze landed on the snarky, familiar-looking man sitting right in front of him. “Has he ever been in love?” Sungmin thought. Realizing the peculiarity of his thoughts, he shook his head and silently laughed at himself.
When the train stopped, he stood up, quite surprised that the snarky man also stood. They both headed towards the door, bumping shoulders along the way. Sungmin apologized while the man glared lightly at him before heading out.
“Oh Hyunnie, you’re early,” a man behind the bar counter greeted Kyuhyun as he entered the door, looking pissed. He glanced at his wristwatch and realized that he’s ten minutes early before the bar opens.
“It’s boring at home,” Kyuhyun simply said and watched as Leeteuk, the bartender carefully wipes the glasses. The white cloth he was holding made tiny screeching sounds at it hits the spotless glass and Kyuhyun gritted his teeth a little. He hated that sound.
Leeteuk smiled as he noticed the slight look of irritation painted on the younger man’s face. He patted Kyuhyun on the head, like a puppy. “You’ll look older than you really are if you keep frowning,” he advised and continued on with the wiping and the screeching.
Kyuhyun wrinkled his nose. Leeteuk always acts like a mother to everyone in the bar. He does not want to reveal what his real name really is and insisted that everyone call him Leeteuk and everyone did.
When Kyuhyun started singing there more than a year ago, right before he and Ryeowook fell in love, Leeteuk was the very first person to welcome him. During the first months that Kyuhyun started singing, Leeteuk had stood near the stage, arms folded in pride, and sang along. He hugged Kyuhyun when he went down from the stage and told him that he did well.
Kyuhyun does not like to admit it but he had liked the look of pride on Leeteuk’s face that day.
“By the way…” Leeteuk started, his voice suddenly becoming solemn. “Siwon-sshi came by awhile ago, right before you arrived.” Siwon is the owner of the bar. Most of the time he’s not around and had simply appointed Leeteuk to supervise everything. Kyuhyun really cannot remember what Siwon’s face looks like but he remembers that he’s a tall, quiet guy who simply nods when he approves of something. Most of the time, as Leeteuk related, Siwon spends his time managing another business in China. “Only God knows what that business really is” Leeteuk had said once.
When Kyuhyun grunted a disinterested “hmm”, Leeteuk carefully placed down the glass he is wiping and sat in front of Kyuhyun, looking at him.
“He came with a new singer. I forgot what his real name is but Siwon said we should call him Yesung,” he whispered in a low voice as if he’s afraid someone might shoot them if they hear.
Again, Kyuhyun grunted a disinterested “hmmmm” and added “Well at least now Kangin-hyung won’t dump his singing duties on me when he wants to go lovey-dovey with you,” he related.
Leeteuk looked mildly surprised for a second and murmured an incoherent sentence that sounded like “that idiot”. After few pauses, he cleared his throat and continued. “Well, I’ll make sure to discipline Kangin,” he said and Kyuhyun briefly wondered if it would be the other way around.
“But Hyunnie…” Leeteuk continued, trying to attract his attention. “When Yesung came, he… came with another guy. They’re in the employee’s resting room right now”
“So? Everyone here does that. Donghae-hyung used to bring a guy named Kibum along, right?”
Leeteuk gave an exasperated sigh and continued, leaning closer to Kyuhyun. “Yesung came with Ryeowook,” he hissed and Kyuhyun froze a little. “And I think they’re sort of. You know. Together.”
Without another word, Kyuhyun stood up and rushed towards the employees’ quarters.
Sungmin stared at the thin line that had gathered in front of the bar then transferred his gaze at the large signboard in front that reads “Prince”.
“What a lame name for a bar,” Sungmin chuckled as he dials Ryeowook’s number. Before he finished, he felt a hand on his shoulder and as he looks up, Ryeowook’s smiling face met his.
“Sungmin-hyung,” he murmured.
“Wookie,” Sungmin murmured back and they briefly hugged each other before Ryeowook pulled him towards a door that reads “employees only”. Sungmin pulled back a little and gave Ryeowook a curious glance.
“Why are we entering through the employees’ entrance?” he asked and Ryeowook gave a little laugh.
“He’s waiting inside. Unless you want to meet him after he sings?”
Sungmin lightly shook his head and gave in, letting Ryeowook pull him excitedly.
This must be how it is to fall in love.
They stopped in front of the door that was slightly ajar. Sungmin could hear voices. He hesitated for a bit, trying to resist the force of Ryeowook pulling his hand.
The moment the door opened, Sungmin saw two men inside and frowned. One was smiling, the other jumped a little as the door opened and Ryeowook’s smiling face emerged.
“Oh… Wookie...” the smiling man greeted them, his eyes turning into lovely half-moons as heads towards the door.
The other man, whom Sungmin recognized as the familiar snarky guy at the train stood frozen like a statue in the middle of the room, mouth opening and closing as if he’s trying to debate with himself on whether he should speak or just simply stand there.
“Woo…” Sungmin started to murmur when he noticed Ryeowook suddenly froze as his gaze landed on the second man.
“Kyu…” Ryeowook said in a voice that was barely a whisper. “K-kyuhyun-sshi. I thought, you’re not working here anymore…”
Sungmin looked confused, his gaze darting from the snarky guy apparently named Kyuhyun, to Ryeowook, to the smiling man. Suddenly, the name Kyuhyun registered in his brain. Cho Kyuhyun. No wonder he looked familiar.
“Wookie…” Kyuhyun said, or at least that’s what Sungmin thought, basing from the words that formed in the other’s mouth.
“Wookie…?” the smiling man called, his voice echoing and bouncing around the silenced room. “Is something wrong?”
Without waiting for a reply from Ryeowook, Kyuhyun strode towards the door, reaching it in three big strides. He pulled Ryeowook with him and with quick footsteps, they both disappeared somewhere in the corridor.
Sungmin and the smiling man were left dumbfounded, staring at the spot where Kyuhyun and Ryeowook stood. Sungmin’s head was spinning. From the rumors he heard in the university, the infamous Cho Kyuhyun is supposed to be from a super rich family but he dropped out of the university before his second year and was never heard of again. Everyone thought he migrated overseas but what is he doing in a place like this?