requested by anon: “could you write a college au of minghao please? if you do, tsym (and please include a reader in it, i’m sorry if it’s too much to ask for)”
Admin note: I wrote and rewrote this and researched and rewrote and deleted and wrote this again so many times, it’s not funny (ok maybe a little). I’m sorry if this wasn’t any good, I legit had such a tough time with this one, well anyway, I hope you enjoy!
Minghao is a Performance Music Major
particularly with a dance focus
when he’s not sitting around in some rehearsal room in the music building practicing his vocals or reviewing for the next postmodernism in dance exam
he can usually be found with the other music majors
usually sitting in the outside picnic area of campus
or running through some of the choreos created for the next final project out on the lawn with Soonyoung, Jun, and Chan
with Joshua (vocal performance major) playing guitar
or with Jihoon telling Mingyu to stop blaring rap long enough for him to finish composing
which causes Mingyu and Vernon (contemporary production majors) to both defend Drake as a musical artist
and that Jihoon should stop composing his boring classically arranged piece
which Jihoon says he can’t because he’s a freaking music theory and composition major and it’s due soon
while the rest are debating the musical merits of the latest pop sensation and whether or not the hook is repeated over and over
“‘Despacito’ has the same chord progressions throughout” “Ok no, there’s a modulation in the bridge…” “DEEESSPAAACITOO”
and Minghao’s music major friends may seem a bit like a mess
but they’re all really close friends
they host recitals every winter and spring
the whole music and drama department
and Minghao is always one of the front performers especially from the dance program
though someone should give him more vocal lines in the shows, why can’t the professors realize his vocals are amazing and that he never gets enough lines smfh
Minghao’s best classes outside of his major are those relating to liberal arts
especially lit and psychology
the only two courses you shared with him since they were mandatory for graduation
you both have talked before, but mostly just the universal complaining and groaning over homework assignments that characterize every college student ever
since your major was in media studies, his in performance arts
it was understandable that you didn’t really get a chance to get to know Minghao, since students with the same majors normally spend a lot of time with people from their own departments
but that’s how you always saw Minghao
since the media studies classes were in the humanities and social science building
which is a little past the music building
his group of music majors is always sitting on the lawn in between
and you’ve noticed little things Minghao does
like how he always opens the doors for the instrumentalists carrying in cases in the morning
or the way he acts like he’s done with his friends 100% but then ends up buying them breakfast and making sure they eat
and while it seems as though Minghao is always rehearsing for one thing or another
you sometimes see him skating down the campus on his skateboard or reading in the library
stuff not even assigned to him by your lit professor
joined by Jun, Wonwoo, and Joshua, or other random music majors
they sort of claimed the back corner of the library
one day your lit professor decides it’s been too quiet and boring
time to assign a huge project that could potentially make or break your grade
because college professors like torturing students as hobbies
and better yet, it’s a partner research essay and visual presentation
which works for you because whoever your partner is, you can just borrow some equipment from the media productions classroom to get the visual presentation part done
and as the teacher starts reading off names
all you can think about is how you hope you don’t get stuck with someone who won’t do their work
the professor calls out Utopia by Thomas More
the one book on the list you really wanted
and then “Minghao, y/n.”
jumping up and silently thanking the heavens for giving you such an easy book to work with
so many freaking things you could talk about, you’re so excited
you almost forgot that you had a partner as you go up to collect the book and the directions
Minghao walks up to you quietly
“So when do you want to meet to work on the essay and visual presentation?”
“Oh uh, we can do tomorrow at the student café if you want.” you tell him
the two of you meet the next day and split the work evenly in half before
“I have a postmodernism in dance exam tomorrow so I’ll take-off first.”
“That’s fine, we have a whole month, we can chill.” you said smiling
Minghao returned the smile and turned around to leave when
“Here, call me if you need help with your half, I’ll finish my half of the essay by the end of the week, so we can begin the visual presentation.”
he hands you his number and you just nod and assure him he can just leave
with Minghao off to study, you decide to go work on your half in the library
the library is usually open quite late anyway
you start researching the ways More wrote his socio-political satire
but with the amount of sleep you’ve been getting, you fall asleep on top of your laptop
and sure, the library isn’t for napping
but screw it, you’re running on 3 hours of sleep in the last two days, what else can you do?
Minghao walks into the library a little while later, looking for a global dance history book when he sees you sleeping on your laptop
hair cascading over the table as you breathe slowly in and out
he smiles unconsciously
he had noticed this before
but you’re really pretty
while the closest interactions you’ve both had together were the random jokes Wonwoo would tell you and Minghao in psych
he knew you were a really nice person, since you and the video production team would always film the shows and performances he did with the rest of his department
he had even seen some of your short student films, the ones that he could only describe as art from someone who must really love what they do
and seeing you calmly napping was cute
so he goes to the nearest vending machine impulsively and buys a can of coffee before he puts it behind your laptop that you’re using as a pillow
“What are you doing Minghao?” Jun says giving Minghao a sly smile while coming up behind him
“Nothing.” he laughs
“Doesn’t look like nothing.” Jun smirks
“We have a project for lit, she’s my partner.” he said shrugging his shoulders while looking down at you
“Does she always sleep here?”
Jun nods his head slowly, an understanding look on his face
“Yea you like her, imma call it now.”
“Yah!” Minghao says punching Jun’s arm
“Hey I called it so remember this moment in the future and thank me later.”
Minghao shakes his head
“Well, Wonwoo and I are ready to go, let’s get something to drink.”
when you wake up and shut your laptop you see the can of coffee sitting in front of your closed laptop, with a post-it note
“Keep up the hard work partner! Fighting! -Minghao” you read
you laugh and take the can with you
over the next few weeks, you and Minghao work together on the lit project
and when it’s done and you both get an A-
you both celebrate with ice cream from the student café
and funny too
he makes you laugh quite a bit by trying poorly to imitate the lit professor
the two of you kept texting about random hw assignments even after the project was over about anything like movies you wanted to see or concerts that were nearby
you got to know more about his dream to be a performer
he was so passionate about it
they way he talked about performing was the same way you felt about filming in media studies
each a form of art, but each a way to express it in your own style
by the time the winter showcase comes along, your professor assigns you to camera 3 on stage for the show
and you text Minghao
“Hey, break a leg at the concert :)”
“Breaking appendages would actually be a bad thing XD” he texts you back
“You know what I meant!”
“Yea haha, are you coming to watch?” your heart skips a beat a little reading his message
you watch as your phone shows that “Minghao is typing” message a few times before it stops
“I mean you don’t have to if you don’t want to”
“I’m filming so of course I’ll be there ;)” you text back
“Oh ok lol”
you laughed at his short response
when you go to the performance hall the night before opening night to set up the audio systems with some of the other video production crew
you see Minghao and one of his friends running through a choreography
you stare at him amazed, the choreo included them dancing with a white ribbon connecting the two of them, which should have gotten tangled countless times but didn’t
you didn’t really want to intrude on the rehearsal, so you leave him a can of coffee with a post-it note on it by the stage
“I believe I owe you a coffee, don’t forget to rest, I believe in you, fighting!-y/n :)”
Minghao is internally screaming at how cute you are when he reads it
“JUST ASK HER OUT ALREADY AND STOP BOTHERING ME.”
Jun’s trying to work on the choreo and practically yells at Minghao who’s told the guys the story for like the fifth time
“Ok but isn’t she so cute? 'don’t forget to rest, I believe in you’”
“Minghao, I called this remember?” Jun say laughing
Minghao smacks him on the arm again
so Minghao decides to finally gather up the courage
with you sitting in the desk next to him in lit
your knees inches away from each other
“Hey y/n wanna grab a dinner after the show or something?”
“Depends.” you say heart beat steadily increasing
“On what?” Minghao says trying to keep his cool
“On whether it’s a date or not.” you want to scream at yourself, where did this courage come from?!?!
“And if it is?” he smiles
“I’d be happy to.”
and when you’re filming the show that night, Minghao catches your eyes while waiting in the wings on stage left
and shoots you a wink
which nearly causes you to drop your camera
and you see him getting smacked by Jun
after the show, he brings you backstage
“Got the gardening club to get me these” he says handing you a small bunch of white carnations
“Aw they’re beautiful.”
“I ended up doing a lot of research on the significance of flowers thanks to a lit project, white carnations mean sweet and lovely.” he smiles shyly
“They also mean pure love.” you say smiling
“Yea, well… they’re just flowers to celebrate a show well-done.” he coughs blushing
“Let’s go for dinner, shall we?”
when all the other music majors found out
it was chaos
“HONESTLY Y/N DO YOU KNOW HOW MANY MUSIC MAJORS HAVE ATTACKED ME TODAY WITH QUESTIONS?” your friend from the media production course asked you
“It’s like some celebrity is dating you or something from this response!” she says shaking her head
and whenever you walk to the humanities building
Minghao bounds up and takes your hand
in front of both the departments
so you have the music majors screaming at Minghao
and the media studies majors cheering you on
it’s a mess
but Minghao just shrugs it off and wraps an arm around you
“Want to grab a coffee before lit?”
“Sure” you laugh
and he holds your hand as you both make your way to the student café
and the both of you lay on the lawn after sipping your lattes
hands intertwined staring up at the clouds in the sky
“Look, they look like white carnations.” you smile and point up at a cluster of clouds
just enjoying the light breeze of a spring day
when he pulls you closer until you’re laying on his arm
<b>Me:</b> Alright, time to do this homework!<p/><b>Me:</b> Oh, shoot...Fairy Tail is on. Well, I guess one episode wouldn't hurt<p/><b></b> *2 seasons later and it's 3am*<p/><b>Me:</b> What...just happened?<p/></p>
Okay, this episode almost killed me. This one had to be done entirely by ear, and there were so many hard-to-parse lines alongside hard-to-understand references that I almost said the heck with it and skipped ahead to the next episode.
However, one of the sites I reference said that Masaaki Yuasa had a major role in creating this episode, so you Yuasa fans out there will probably want to check it out. His influence isn’t immediately obvious, but you can kinda make it out in a few scenes.
Kobutori Jiisan - This is probably the biggest pain of the whole episode – everything hinges on a classroom production of this Japanese folktale that very few people in the Western world have heard of. I highly recommend you do some quick Googling to fill in the blanks yourself, but the Cliff’s Notes version is as follows.
-Two old dudes live next to each other, both with big lumps on their faces. -One old dude is nice, the other old dude is a jerk. -The nice old man ends up partying with the Oni, Japanese demons. -They take the nice old man’s lump ‘cause he’s a cool guy. -The nice old man brags about this to the jerk old man. -The jerk decides to try this out himself. -The jerk old man sucks at partying though, and the Oni are unimpressed. -The Oni stick another lump on the jerk old man’s face.
Now, this is the version of the story they focus on the episode. I’ve seen the motivation for why the Oni remove the old man’s lump change in different versions. This isn’t that important, but be forewarned that if you ever end up having to discuss this story with some pedantic nutjob, they’re probably going to walk all over you.
Benkei - He’s a legit warrior monk dude who has a bunch of folklore written about him, with the most popular being his appearance in Ushiwakamaru, the story of Minamoto no Yoshitsune, another base dude. If you’ve watched enough anime, you’ve probably seen stuff with a guy on a bridge refusing to let people pass and another guy finally kicking his teeth in, at which point the bridge guy swears his loyalty to the teeth-kicker guy. Anyways, the bridge guy is usually a takeoff of good ol’ Benkei here.
The Golden Demon - Otherwise known as Konjiki Yasha in the original Japanese, this is a story by Ozaki Koyo. Some guy is in love with a girl who ends up jilting him because she gets proposed to by some other dork who gives her a diamond ring. The guy starts hating the world and becomes a hard-hearted moneylender, and the girl ends up in a lousy marriage. Sounds like a good time all around, doesn’t it?
“Mt. Akagi” - Grandpa has a lousy memory and the famous line he utters isn’t from the Golden Demon, it’s from an eponymous movie about Kunisada Chuji, a leader of a group who were like the OG yakuza. Anyways, Kunisada made his base on Mt. Akagi, but when it’s put under siege by the government, he utters this supposedly-famous line before making his brief escape. Regardless, Maruko’s whole family end up wracking their brains over what movie the line Grandpa says originally came from.
Last day of classes. Had a pretty emotional end to the day during music class. Everyone was crying as we all read out messages to our teacher and then presented a ‘yearbook’ of sorts to him.
Was productive by sorting out school recommendations and gathering tertiary information.
~ 22.09.17 ~
Last day of school, lots of conversations to end the school year. The best feeling is knowing that you are leaving high school on good terms. It’s great to have this (cringe) chapter of our lives come to an end, but it will be missed.
Now all that’s left is HSC, graduation and the formal.
Let me take a moment to address all the fans of authority backing the teacher, school, and Ben Fields, the Spring Valley High School SRO cop who has been fired after being taped assaulting a student during disciplinary action. I’m seeing a lot of “yeah, but” routines on social media. And they’re all incorrect for bad reasons.
High school students are young adults who are treated like children by many teachers, staff, administrators, police, parents, and neighbors. They are not children. As a teacher, I’m of the pedagogical position to be in opposition to enforced disciplinary authority in schools.
How to handle a student who has broken a rule, maybe even a law, though is not being violent or even raising a fuss?
I always insist a classroom is our shared space in which we collaborate on projects. I recognize that we come from different communities and that our social differences need not be put aside in the classroom. When something goes wrong and that wrong involves a student, I permit a break from school work. There’s no reason for me to invoke authority and to turn our collaborative effort into a mask I, as teacher-boss, wear when things are going well.
First, I do not police classrooms.
Second, when a student has an issue, I address it from my point of view. I don’t knee jerk authority to harangue a student nor do I pretend like I’m not a teacher and they’re not a student. If we can’t solve the problem, I move on, if possible. Nobody wants a problem in the classroom, and all problems do not need to be addressed “at this moment”. The “at this moment” insistence is a crude way to reinforce authority and hierarchy. Students need time to think. Adolescents are more willing to take risks than their teachers are. This isn’t a social thing; this is a brain chemistry thing. Understanding how members of our community process the same information in the same situations differently, and permitting difference is one very significant means to illustrating to everybody that they matter and their differences matter and that differences can be present. I don’t use “natural” nor do I use “permissible“ nor “acceptable” because these words and their synonyms invoke authority in hierarchy. I’m not playing a word game. I must train myself as a teacher to be vigilant of oppressive state apparatuses in my classroom behavior. As a member of a community, I need to be working just as I insist students work.
Third, if a student insists on being an obstacle to class progress, resists allowing us to move on, then I break the class down. “Well, ok, then, let’s take a break from work. Work on (whatever is assigned or being worked on) with your neighbors or on your own for ten minutes. Let’s try not to be too noisy.” If necessary, I’ll offer a quick note regarding anxiety. Something like, “Hey, we all need a break sometime. Nothing is so important that we can’t take a few minutes to be good to each other and ourselves. We’ll get back to work when we are ready.“ You’ll be surprised, but students will not take advantage of this sort of thing, that is, as long as you help build a high-interest classroom where students feel invested in cultivating a space in which work can be accomplished. They have to be invested. And that’s often up to the teacher. Nobody wants to invest in a room where a fucking creep is always standing or sitting in the front.
Fourth, teachers have certain powers we can’t ignore. Why involve the state apparatuses, when we can often do something simple as letting a student have a pass to the hall/bathroom. “If you need to step outside, come get a pass and go for a walk. Come back when you’re ready.” A trip to the bathroom to wash your face and have space to think for a second can calm a potentially bad situation. We have to permit outbursts. We have to permit dissent. We have to permit disobedience. Our social order is corrupt, our neighborhoods often anxiety-ridden and unsafe places, homes can be dangerous, adolescence is precarious and cruel, but a classroom can be a place where differences permitted students can speak up and act out without punishment. Individuals need outlets to express themselves. We risk a lot when we build community. We need to remind ourselves that our peace is a collaborative project that demands care for each other.
Violence is terrible in schools but we shouldn’t be involved in using violence to organize students. The police presence in schools is a form of violence. And we need to be honest about that. You can talk about school violence all you want. If you’re not willing to address the state, the police, and administration of students when addressing student violence, then you’re talking about violence in a useless manner.