Length: TripleShot (epilogue)
Genre: au, fluff, drama, cliché!
Disclaimer: Read and enjoy - don't take credit for my work.
Summary: “I have something that belongs to you.”
AN: OMG I FINISHED MY FIRST STORY!!! SO HAPPY!!!
Here it is, the ending. I wass going to write a different epilogue, but this is what happened. Apologies for the not-so-amazing writing for this verse, and I do hope this ending is somewhat satisfying. ~~~
IMPORTANT AN AT THE END!! Please read it. xx
The sound brought a smile to Changmin’s face. He quickly spat out the paste from his mouth, rinsing off the remains before he walked out of his bathroom and down the hallway. Jaejoong and Daesung had absolutely refused to take the upstairs bedroom, declaring it too much. Or at least Jaejoong had refused. Daesung’s excitement had been silenced with a death glare that Changmin was finding increasingly attractive on the petite boy – man. Man! Changmin had to remind himself constantly. Jaejoong did not appreciate being referred to as boy. Apparently it was demeaning.
As he made his way down to the room in the very far corner of his house, he shook his head with amusement. It had almost been a week since the duo had been staying with him, yet Daesung still hadn’t gotten used to sleeping on a bed. So far, every night the poor boy had tumbled off the bed, waking up both Changmin and Jaejoong with the loud noise in the silence of the night.
Poking his head in, after knocking quietly, Changmin had to stop the laughter in his throat before he woke up the sleeping mess that was sprawled on top of his brother.
Jaejoong was on the floor with a heavy Daesung on his lower body, as the latter snored away and tried to cuddle with his brother’s leg. Jaejoong huffed and was about to release a series of curse words before he noticed the head poking in, forcing him to stop the words before they escaped his lips.
“Help?” he asked weakly. As he looked at the butt that was wiggling in front of him.
“Sure.” Changmin laughed inaudibly as he picked Daesung up and left him on the far side of the bed, so if his body decided to spasm again, he’d most likely hit the wall or end up in the middle of the bed. Not the floor, again.
“Thanks.” Jaejoong was standing in his usual stance in front Changmin; head slightly bowed, thumbs fiddling with the long sleeves and biting his lip furiously. Changmin hated it. He wanted the younger man to feel comfortable with him, as silly as that was. He wanted Jaejoong to laugh and smile easily in front of him, not be on his guard constantly. Then again, Changmin’s supposed reason for having them stay with him weren’t exactly helping his case.
“It’s fine.” He shrugged it off, not mentioning that these nightly shenanigans were keeping him entertained, too. “Weren’t you sleep?” he wondered. Jaejoong usually had slightly puffy and red eyes when Changmin usually had to come to the rescue, a clear sign of disturbed sleep on his pouty face. He seemed to have been awake tonight.
“Couldn’t sleep” was the hesitant answer, almost guilty
Again, Changmin was annoyed. He wondered how long it’d take for them to be somewhat open with one another. Soon, he hoped.
“Everything ok?” He asked gently, knowing not to be too insistent.
“Yeah…just…you know, change of environment I suppose.” The sad note in his soft voice pained Changmin. “Sorry, to have woken you up again.” He gestured towards Daesung’s content form on the bed.
“Don’t worry about it, I wasn’t asleep. There was some work I had to take care of anyways – finished! The work was finished. Don’t worry, I was done with it.” He quickly assured, not liking the look in Jae’s eyes when he mentioned work. He was constantly worried about disturbing Changmin’s work or sleep, often chastising Daesung when he came to Changmin for chit chat or to ask about this or that. Changmin was working really hard to get rid of that habit.
“Ok.” He nodded, unsure.
“Tell you what, if you’re still restless why don’t we go and get some fresh air?” Changmin asked, smiling widely. If Jaejoong was having sleeping problems, then the least he could do was distract him from whatever was worrying him during his waking hours.
“Um, isn’t it a little too cold to go outside?”
It definitely was not smart to go outside.
“Come on, this calls for popcorn and a movie” Changmin walked out, not giving Jaejoong a chance to refuse. He was not about to leave the younger to his dark thoughts. Besides, this was a good time to get to know his housemate a little better.
He needn’t look behind him, the soft footsteps following him were assurance enough.
As he led the way into the kitchen and opened the cabinet, Jaejoong was paying close attention to his actions like he often did. When Changmin had come up with his master plan to get the two brothers to live with him, he hadn’t considered how serious they (or at least Jaejoong – Daesung was too busy exploring everything) would take it. Jaejoong had been following him around since day one, listening and watching, paying close attention to how everything worked. He was determined to learn everything and get on with doing all the chores, much to Changmin’s displeasure.
As much as the tall male liked the idea of someone doing his work for him, Jaejoong simply didn’t leave him anything to do as soon as he got the hang of things. Hoovering, tidying, cleaning, washing, cooking (though that still needed a lot of improvement, but Jaejoong was pretty passionate about it – and happiest when in the kitchen) and any other chore that may have needed to be done. For the last week, Changmin he’d woken up to the younger male doing one thing or another, the house clean and tidy with Daesung watching TV, looking like his soul had left his body.
Jaejoong had picked up everything quickly, not afraid to get his hands dirty or challenge himself. The hardest task was probably the cooking, which he’d almost begged Changmin to teach him properly. He was getting better, but still. Never having cooked or used proper kitchen utensils, it would inevitably take some time to learn. Jaejoong hated that. So he pushed himself. He learnt everything at an impressive speed.
The problem, however, was that Changmin was now left doing nothing. He’d taken time off work and with Jaejoong doing everything at home, he was left to either watch TV or just wander off. Boring. Maybe he should call his friends and arrange for them to go out.
Or maybe not. He didn’t exactly now how to explain the presence of his two housemates.
“Whoa” Jaejoong let out, eyes almost bugging out of their sockets as he saw the microwave do it’s magic. It made Changmin smile.
“Why don’t you grab yourself a drink?” he offered. Jaejoong hesitated for a minute before going to grab a strawberry milk carton.
“I don’t get it.” Jaejoong’s lost look had Changmin losing it. He rolled off the sofa, holding his stomach as he laugh too hard. They were watching some random movie centred on some princess, or whatever – Changmin wasn’t concentrating on the movie. Rather he was much more interested in Jaejoong’s expressions as he got more and more confused about the on-screen coupe’s issues.
“Don’t laugh.” Jaejoong pouted, crossing his arms. He didn’t like sitting on the couch, always preferring to sit cross-legged on the floor, leaning on the sofa and snuggling a pillow to his chest. It was adorable.
“Sorry, you’re right. Ugh, this movie isn’t much fun.” Changmin complained, laying on the floor next to Jaejoong. “Maybe Daesung would like it.”
“I doubt it.” Jaejoong sighed, leaning back on the armrest. The clothes he was wearing were mostly big on him, because he’d only agreed to take Changmin’s old and used clothes – which were way too big for his small frame. But oddly enough, it looked really good on him.
“Why not?” Changmin wondered as he reached for the remote to take something else.
“Um, the whole rich happy family stuff…it upsets him.” Jaejoong hugged his knees.
That got Changmin’s attention, though. He sat up straight, remote forgotten as he looked at the ambiguous look on Jaejoong’s face. “Why?” Maybe he shouldn’t have asked, but wasn’t better to share one’s problems?
“It reminds him of a forgotten past.” Jaejoong smiled, despite the not-so-happy words.
“You know, it’s really admirable that you’ve managed to take care of him all this time. Your parents must have been proud of you.” And he meant every word.
“Our parents? Oh, um…we’re not brothers! Biologically, that is.” Jaejoong stated a little surprised. “I’ve known Daesungie for only seven years.”
“Huh? Oh! I’m so sorry! I just assumed that you wer-”
“No, no it’s fine. It actually hadn’t occurred to me to inform you.” He shrugged. Fortunately, but surprisingly, Jaejoong didn’t seem upset about the topic. So Changmin decided it was safe to dig a little deeper.
“If you don’t mind me asking…um, how did you two meet?”
Jaejoong had a fond smile on his face as he seemed to remember something.
“I only remember the streets. I don’t think I’ve ever been anywhere else. How I survived as a child, is beyond me, but here I am.” There was a hint of pride in his voice, which mad Changmin smile.
“Daesungie, on the other hand, had to get used to this life style. He was seven year old when I first saw him. All he had were the clothes on his back and that wheelchair.” His voice broke as he remembered the tears of the little boy crying, asking for his mom. “He was from a rich family, actually. Very rich. The accident which caused him to lose his ability to walk, also ended his life of luxury. When he was younger he used to tell me all these stories of how amazing his home used to be. On nights where there wasn’t food to eat, he’d tell me about his kitchen and the staff and how they would make him anything he wanted.” Jaejoong was staring at the carpet, a thoughtful expression on his face as he recollected his memories.
“He stopped talking about it after a while. He’s a smart kid, and a happy soul. That’s what I like to believe got him through everything. Dwelling on the past wasn’t going to help. He knew, better than I did, that his parents had deliberately put him in that position. If they didn’t want him back, there was no way he could get back home. It took me a lot longer to understand that.”
“Oh my god. That’s horrible.” Changmin was speeches.
“Yeah. I guess it’s better for him to not be thinking about it. I just…I don’t really know much about how families work, but I know enough to know parents are supposed to love their children unconditionally. How could they abandon him like that, Changmin-sshi?” Those eyes were searching for an answer that Changmin didn’t have as he stared back, lost as to what he should say. What do you say in a situation like this? Yunho would be so much better at handling this.
“I don’t know. I really wish, that there was some way to…I don’t even know. I’m really sorry.” Changmin couldn’t look him in the eye.
“No. I’m sorry. I guess that was a little too much to enclose. Sorry. Please don’t be upset. Daesung’s fine. In fact, he’s happier than I’ve seen him for years, thanks to you.” He scrunched his nose sheepishly.
“Please don’t apologise. I want you to talk to me, Jae. I know the arrangement we have is a little strange, to say the least, but at least we can have a mutual companionship? Or something like that…?”
Jaejoong burst out laughing. Full on laughter as he clutched his stomach. It was a strange sight to Changmin. He’d wanted to desperately see Jaejoong smile but now he was laughing right in front of him…at his expense. And the older man couldn’t even be mad, as he listened to the silly-sounding laughter, which happened to be music to his ears at that moment.
Changmin was smart enough to have known that his feelings towards Jaejoong were not only of sympathy. As ridiculous as he would have found the notion some time ago, Changmin knew he was falling for the younger man. As cold and guarded as he was, Changmin knew there was a soft soul that was waiting to be given a chance – a chance to be free. To be himself. And Changmin decided he was willing to be the one to do that. It didn’t matter how long it took for the walls to fall, he would wait.
Changmin had never cared about someone so quickly and deeply before, and the constant increase in his heart beat, the hammering butterflies in his gut and lack of sleep made him certain that he wanted to venture into a world he hadn’t explored before. He didn’t know what waited for him, if anything at all, but Jaejoong’s dorky laughter and gentle personality and smiles made him want to risk everything to find out. And with the smaller male laughing so hard, it took all of Changmin’s self-restraint to not kiss him right then and there. Patience. He had to be patient and show Jaejoong that he can trust him, and he knew that would not be easy. He could not scare him.
“Companionship?” More laughter. “Wow!” Followed by another fit.
Changmin just shook his head adoringly, not minding at all that he was being made fun of. For the time, he would happily teach him how to cook and learn all his quirks.
Just as he was about to tease Jaejoong about his laughter, the sound of a body crashing to the floor interrupted them both.
Both men fell silent for a second, as they looked towards the corridor leading to where the sound came from, and then both burst into laughter.
Yup, Changmin thought. That encounter years ago was definitely a blessing.
AN: Anywhoo, I had some other ideas about this verse and because I wanted to keep this a tripleshot, I couldn't incorporate them into the story here. HOWEVER! I have decided that I am going to write those as separate little OneShots, TwoShots or Drabbles!! SO, if you like this verse, keep an eye on my Gamble Verse tag for updates on this AU. If you didn't hate it, that is!
Thank you for all those who have COMMENTED! Comments keep me going more than anything! Hope you liked it, and that you stay tuned for any further updates! xxx