As the crown prince of South Korea, Minseok’s parents were always protective of him ever since he was little, yet not being able to join him for dinner or tuck him to bed. Minseok’s nannies were the ones who look after him because the king and queen were often busy in noble matters. Being the only son of the royal couple, Prince Minseok already represented South Korea in other countries at an early age. And his trip to China was one of the best he ever had.
Prince Minseok was treated very well in his stay in Beijing when he was thirteen. They were trying very hard to please him, but all they received were a raised eyebrow and disappointed sighs and yawns. After all the efforts of the Chinese palace to satisfy him, people thought Prince Minseok was coldhearted, very distant from his Mother’s behavior. But little did they know what Prince Minseok only wanted was to see his parents. Is that too hard to give?
“Hi, Minseok.” A strange boy, probably same age, sneaked in Minseok’s guarded room, perfectly escaped the sleeping escorts outside and the busy nannies in the quarters. The lad jumped on Minseok’s huge bed, the prince needing two-stepped stairs to reach the cushion. The cushion bounced, making Minseok wake up from his slumber. “I’m Hannie. My mother calls me that and she is very sweet and nice and you can also call me that because I think you are nice too—”
In surprise, Minseok got up, taking two steps farther on his bed, ready to slap his unexpected guest with his pillow. “Who are you?! What are you doing here?! I’m calling the guards—”
“Sssssshh,” Hannie pressed a finger against his lips. “You looked pretty bored here in the palace. I think I’m your hero for today.” Hannie smiled. The pretty lad only had the chance to get out of his room during breakfast since his father instructed him to stay there for a week or allowed him sometimes to play in the garden when the special visitor from South Korea was not in the palace grounds.
Before he could even protest for his invaded privacy and interrupted dream, Hannie grabbed Minseok’s hand, catching Minseok swiftly since they didn’t use the two-stepped stool. The Prince thought very deep, unconsciously following Hannie’s instructions of escape because he was too distracted. What’s wrong with a little risk?
“We will get caught!” Minseok pulled Luhan with his grip.
“It is okay. I got you.”
Six words and he gained Minseok’s trust. It only took him six words and a smile that wrinkled the sides of his eyes to get the prince’s approval. It’s very rare, since the prince never even relied on his butlers and guards really well. He knew it in himself that he was a very important person and that people will take advantage of him if they get the chance, if he shows them his fragility and helplessness.
But not this kid, not this boy named Hannie.
Prince Luhan’s servant opened the door of the car in respect, assisting the princes as they get in the same car for the special Beijing tour of the South Korean royalty. Two days after their debate. Prince Luhan still worked very hard to entertain Prince Minseok, being more careful in what to say so he just asked more about the prince’s hobbies and his life in South Korea and if he ever saw Girls’ Generation since he’s a royalty he probably saw maybe at least Tiffany or Hyoyeon.
“They don’t like guys louder than girls so you got no chance.” Minseok tried to piss Luhan off, but his comeback reply was even more frustrating for him to remember again. Luhan answered with a glued stare that wanted to meet Minseok’s eyes as he waited for Luhan’s respond, “I don’t want them to like me. I already like someone else.”
“—And this is the Tiananmen Square which is a large city square in the center of Beijing, China, named after the Tiananmen gate located to its North, separating it from the Forbidden City—” The official tour guide of the palace, a bit old for the royal lads to get bored just by hearing her voice, introduced the first tourist spot for their whole itinerary list that amazed two average guards and new distracted butlers—personally picked by Prince Luhan for his mischievous scheme—and made them want to take pictures of themselves instead of looking after the princes.
“I bet I’m a better tour guide.” Luhan’s cockiness made Minseok roll his eyes, teasing him that he’ll just talk about girls’ generation and building a temple for them for him to visit every day. The guards and the servants were busy taking pictures, forgetting that they have work to do and that it’s their personal Beijing tour vacation.
“Sssssshh,” Prince Luhan pressed a finger against his lips. “You looked pretty bored here. I think I’m your hero for today.” Prince Luhan smiled. That smile, the smile that wrinkled the sides of his eyes. It seemed familiar yet sunken deep in his mind. Minseok remembered that smile, but couldn’t figure out where he saw it. He just wished he could.
Prince Minseok let go from Luhan’s tight grip, catching his breath from running fast enough to escape from the troubled guards.
“T-they’ll find out that w-we’re gone in a few minutes.” Luhan wiped the sweat off of his forehead yet still smiling and trying to meet Minseok’s eyes, checking if he’s fine as he witnessed his flushed cheeks and pink gums and small teeth. He was surprised that Minseok finally smiled, releasing a little laugh with the back of his hand covering his mouth, because he never saw him do it once since his arrival in China.
Luhan leaned a little closer and giggled. “Wow. You know how to smile.”
And that’s how Minseok lost the spirit. “If we’ll get caught, I’m going to tell them that you’re at fault.”
“Go tell them,” Minseok raised a confused brow because of Luhan’s smug face. “If you know the way to the palace.”
Minseok tried to come up with a better comeback, but all he could think was the path they took while running. “I’m taking a cab!”
“You have money?”
“Of course, I do! I always bring—” Minseok patted his back pockets, checked his coat’s, and invaded his bag—but there was no wallet holding his only hope to get out of this trouble.
“Are you looking for this?” Luhan immediately held the wallet too high for Minseok’s reach and swiftly put it in his back pocket. He laughed, “Hey hey! Why are you touching my butt?! Don’t harass me!”
“Give it back.” Minseok crossed his arms over his chest after slapping Luhan’s bicep. He raised a brow, “Your parents must be ashamed of you because you don’t put a princely behavior into practice.”
Luhan smiled even more—a mischievous one unexpected by Prince Minseok who had been trying to piss the younger prince since the start of the day—and walked two steps towards him with his hands on his back to lean closer. “You’re in my territory. If I act like a prince, then you have to bow down before me. Be thankful, for I’m only asking you to tour Beijing with me, and not carry me all the way to the palace.” He patted the pouting prince’s head.
Luhan skipped his way on the sidewalk, reassured that Minseok will follow him since the Korean royalty doesn’t know the way nor have money to pay a cab—and he was right. Minseok did follow him, never showing will through his expressions. The older prince pulled Luhan’s wrist so as to face him. “We will get caught!”
“It is okay. I got you.”
Six words that confused Prince Minseok. It only took him six words to let go of Luhan’s wrist, and stare at his face whilst thinking, not believing that maybe Prince Luhan already became a part of his life. He just couldn’t remember when or where or how. He just couldn’t.
Luhan is the oldest of the three princes: his brothers were Prince Wufan and Prince Zitao. Being the oldest amongst the royal sons, he was destined to be the next king to the throne. Rather than study in the palace library or take advanced lessons for Economics and Statistics, he likes to roam around Beijing and interact with his people—he thought that it was a better idea to know the reality of China instead of scanning pages of thick history books and calculus. His mother supported him—their minds run the same, wanting adventure and exploring new things and travelling—everything his father forbid him to do.
“—eat this too and this and do you like chicken intestines I know there are street foods like these in South Korea too and—” Luhan began picking raw meat on sticks and giving it to the vendor, smiling as if the old woman knows him very well since he’s a loyal customer.
The vendors always helped Luhan in dealing with the paparazzi—blocking them and luring them with dropped prices or free samples. If it was getting rough, they had a practiced vendor mob just for Prince Luhan’s sake—their favorite.
“I can’t eat all of that. I just want coffee.” Prince Minseok looked a bit exhausted since he ran a long distance and the streets had a lively flowing crowd and the strange language he was hearing around him. People started greeting Luhan, denying their mistake of thinking that Minseok is his boyfriend even though the older can’t understand a word. When Minseok looked at Luhan in weariness, the Chinese prince panicked and offered water and panicked again and got really worried not because the South Korean royalty might get disappointed with the treatment of the Chinese authority—but because his arms just moved on its own and sweat started dripping on the sides of his face and he just felt that maybe it’s a wrong decision to do his plan.
In the midst of Luhan fretting, Minseok suddenly laughed, his arms hugging his stomach as his knees weakened because Luhan fell for his good acting. “Yah!” Luhan wanted to slap Minseok on his arm, but the older one pulled a raised eyebrow in a split of a second. Luhan lost the first round.
(Minseok: 1 Luhan: 0)
“I’m going to treat you coffee if you eat this,” Luhan showed the freshly-grilled Beijing goodness in a platter, grinning as he stared at his confused companion who’s carefully examining every strange food in front of him. Time for revenge, Luhan wanted to win the second round—He smirked, “Too fragile with your salmon and medium rare steak?”
In no hesitancy, Minseok took a stick of chicken intestine, accepting the challenge of the overly-confident Luhan. In a single bite, the Korean royalty ripped the meat out of the thin wood and chewed its way down to his throat, with a swallow that made Luhan drop his jaw a little.
“Caramel Machiatto, pabo.” Minseok broke the stick with three fingers. “And—I want more of what I just ate.”
(Minseok: 2 Luhan: 0)
It was already past ten o’clock, the two almost touring the whole square by foot. They stopped by every food store they saw in the street, Luhan asking Minseok to try more Chinese food and the Korean prince whining at first but then ending up eating everything Luhan buys. They both looked a little tired and very very full, since most of the money was spent on food rather than souvenirs. Luhan asked Minseok if he wanted anything and he replied sarcastically with world peace (inner peace away from Luhan) and unity—yet he chose a snap back and an “I Love Beijing” shirt.
The princes took an alternative path to get away from the paparazzi who managed to escape the crowd. Never did they know—the guards were on the other side. Luhan told Minseok to keep his cool and stay closer and hide behind him, reassuring that he got everything under control. Minseok, in a deep sigh, felt relieved as Luhan unconsciously held his hand and Minseok’s fingers gripping at the back of the younger prince’s coat.
The new butler-in-charge was just about to approach them when suddenly, Luhan shouted, “How could you just leave us with your busy tourist vacation trip? Do you think we’re safe enough to walk alone in Beijing?”
The butler and the guards were shocked, the words ready to ablaze being clogged down in the butler’s throat. Luhan pulled Minseok, walking past through their shocked escorts to head to the waiting car.
The two got in the car, Luhan assisting Minseok as he takes his previous seat. As the windows view the square smaller and farther away from them, Minseok leaned a little closer to Luhan to whisper.
“I had fun. Thank you, Prince Luhan.”
Luhan just smiled—and turned his head facing the window to hide the grin that’s trying to escape because of what Minseok just said.
The National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) (simplified Chinese: 国家大剧院; literally: National Grand Theatre), and colloquially described as The Giant Egg, is an opera house in Beijing, People’s Republic of China. The Centre, an ellipsoid dome of titanium and glass surrounded by an artificial lake, seats 5,452 people in three halls and is almost 12,000 m² in size. It was designed by French architect Paul Andreu. Construction started in December 2001 and the inaugural concert was held in December 2007.
The exterior of the theater is a titanium accented glass dome that is completely surrounded by a man-made lake. It is said to look like an egg floating on water, or a water drop. It was designed as an iconic feature, something that would be immediately recognizable.
The dome measures 212 meters in east–west direction, 144 meters in north–south direction, and is 46 meters high. The main entrance is at the north side. Guests arrive in the building after walking through a hallway that goes underneath the lake. The titanium shell is broken by a glass curtain in north–south direction that gradually widens from top to bottom.
Alice Nine’s vocalist Shou secretly went to Beijing and specially recorded a VCR for everyone in Beijing. Want to know about the details of Shou’s trip to Beijing? Please pay close attention to the official news to be released in the near future.
Thank you SM for noticing Luhan in such a crowded place like Myeongdong, for training him, and for introducing him to the world. Thank you for making his dreams—becoming a performer, standing on the same stage as his idols—come true. Thank you for putting him in the same group as Yixing, Minseok, Tao, and all the other members who made his experience in EXO rewarding when it was difficult. Thank you for creating for him the opportunities to achieve what he has today.
Kim Soo Hyun says he would like to try rowing a boat (are you thinking of a boat date??) on the lake when it is being lit up by lights.
Last night he had Peking Duck (which was prepared and delivered by Quan Ji De, a famous Beijing restaurant specially for Kim Soo Hyun). Apparently he likes it so much that he was raving about it that night. No longer worried about his waistline, he even jokingly asked his abs if they are still there. LOL boy why you so funny.
When talking about the similarities between himself and Do Min Joon, he says that both of them will actively go for it and persevere till the end once they set their goals.