pairing: taeyeon-centric; het!ontae (jinki x taeyeon); les!taekey (gwiboon x taeyeon); implied ontaekey genre: fluff with a touch of smut rating: r for non-explicit sex scene, pg for the rest word count: 2353 warning: vague description of a caesarean birth. this au
wherein they all meet ‘the monster’.
11 hours & 43 minutes
taeyeon shifts around on
the bed, kicking the thin sheet off her legs, the material too hot in the
stuffy room. but then it’s too cold, the
fan on high blasting her with air that’s just a bit too frosty, & she has
to pull it back up again. it’s
irritating & she’s irritated by it, her brow & knees sweaty from the
only one night left, she
thinks, rubbing her thin fingers over the mound of flesh that houses her
finally-not-kicking child. 11 hours
& 43 minutes, to be precise, until everything becomes real, until the
diapers aren’t just a pile of white in a basket next to an old oak changing
table, one stuffed with blankets & burping towels & onesies. it’s next to her dresser & clearly mismatched
& she loves the way they stand in contrast to each other.
gwiboon had wanted to
paint it, to “give it some color”, but taeyeon had kind of liked the way the
scratched wood looked old & worn, thought it gave it some character. she liked old things. besides, gwiboon had refused to paint it
black & had withdrawn her offer when taeyeon had shrugged & said that
was the only color she’d consider.
there was enough color
anyway. lots of green, yellow, &
purple, stripes, plaids & solids. a
few pink things because she liked pink, & so did gwiboon, & so did
she’s lying in bed waiting
for jinki to get to her, knowing that she’ll have to wait even longer than
usual because he’ll be idling through a drive-thru during rush hour just to
bring her some food she definitely shouldn’t be eating, making him an excellent
it’s so hot though, she
thinks as she kicks the sheet off again.
A view of a man busy with
phone unsteady on the crook of his neck and papers scattered on his
desk greets her when she pushed the dark oak window before her. He
shot his head up when he heard heels clanking loudly on the hard
wooden floor. With a simple gesture from him, she knew she needs to
wait in his favorite sofa set. Sofa set designed by his great
architect son, like he always said to every guest or business partner
visited this room.
uncomfortably on the fine leather and kept checking her phone as if
it’s going to explode anytime whenever she missed a glance. She
regretted her decision not to take Minho along. This would be
awkward. With Minho by her side, at least she could pretend she
talked to Minho instead of her father.
“Have you had lunch?”
She nods even the last
meal she got is only almond milk this morning.
“If you need help with
your application I could find some agent to take care of them.”
Nothing happened as
Gwiboon clutched the fabric of her wide pants and kept her head down.
“Kim Gwiboon, look at
me,” terrified with all the worst case scenarios in her mind, she
braced herself to make an eye contact with her father, “Here. I
hate seeing my daughter took me as a bad guy. Well, I know I’m not
a good one, Gwiboon. But I’ve already tried the best to keep my
patience. I gave you chances. A lot. But then every other days I
heard that you kept failing and God, that was hurt.”
‘It hurts me more
every single time I heard you saying I failed, Dad’
“I’m sorry, Dad.”
He sighed, as heavy as
Gwiboon’s heart, “Your mother and I always wanted the best for
you. Since you’re little, you carried magic in your hand whenever
you sneaked into the kitchen. And maybe that’s your path, honey.”
“But I love making
clothes as much as cooking. I’m good at both.”
“That’s why I pushed
you to take this opportunity. Maybe being fashion designer it’s not
Something strangled her
throat. Her chest felt like pierced by thousand nails, again and
again. But she has nothing left to cry. To even break down and being
her usual spoiled brat whining to get what she wanted.
“Is it not enough for
you making such a distance with Jonghyun? You took his dream away.
Are you really that cruel making me experiencing the same torment
with my brother?”
“Is it not enough for
you making him took those pills every single night before his final
exam just to keep him alive while his soul already gone with his
future that you thrown away?! I am not Jonghyun, Dad! He loved you
and Mom too much he couldn’t see both of you being disappointed!
But I am selfish bitch just like other people out there told me! This
is my dream! Not yours!”
“No, no, I won’t stop!
I made it to every fashion week in my department! I participated in
national exhibition! I got praised for my hard work! I’m not going
to stop, Dad.”
“But you didn’t get
the internship. Simple matter like that and you missed it, Gwiboon. I
might sounds harsh but you need to understand what reality is. What
life had offered to you. You’re too busy chasing something that
maybe already far beyond you.”
“I never won any cooking
contest, Dad. That should tell you something.”
“But your dessert recipe
got into this hotel restaurant since you’re middle school. You
served amazing dinners for those people who chose to eat in our
bistro. That should tell you something, too.”
Gwiboon realized she’s
already had no more chances to argue. All the excuses about her and
her brother do nothing and waste all the energy left inside her thin
“I understand all your
concern. Jonghyun said you got into the winter fashion week. Again.
Your mother and I are happy to hear that and we want you to join that
event. Until then, spend some times in the kitchen, at least once a
Something sparks inside
her chest. Did Jonghyun actually tell him? Did
Jonghyun actually care? Have Jonghyun and their father finally talked
to each other again?
“I love you, Gwiboon.
And I love your brother. You have lots of time before you move to
“He told you what?!?!!”
Gwiboon put her phone as
far as she could while Minho’s screeching like broken alarm on the
other line. She let him muttering alone for a while until he called
her frantically, realized that she hasn’t been listening at all.
“Gwiboon-ah! Are you
“I heard you, idiot!
Your voice could be heard within the neighborhood just now.”
“Is it Christmas yet?
That’s so much miracle your Dad let you stay.”
She rolled her eyes for
the nth time that day, “He didn’t! He gave me chance to finish
the fashion week. By this time next year, we’re already miles
There’s a long pause
before finally Gwiboon’s sighing again, “This is it, huh? I’m
finally leaving you.”
“You think I bought a
phone and laptop to cut a carrot? Have you heard about internet?”
The bed was lifted so Jinki could sit up. His pillow behind his head was recently fluffed up and the fabric was soft against his cheek as he turned to look at who he heard coming into the room. A big smile spread across his face when Gwiboon came into his vision. She was safe and warm in her blanket carried in by Jonghyun. He couldn’t hear what his husband was whispering into her ear, but her little eyes found her daddy across the room and a small noise left her lips as her chubby limbs started to wiggle. Once Jonghyun was sitting in his chair next to the bed Jinki gazed at them after moving to lay his left cheek against his pillow. He was still weak, but he was slowly getting his strength back.
Gwiboon was sat on the bit of bed next to him and Jinki moved his hand to gently poke her in the tummy. “Hey Pumpkin.” His voice was soft and deep, and her eyes widened as her fingers curled around his hand. She was fascinated with his wedding ring once again and Jinki had to swallow down his emotions at the thought she wouldn’t have to live with it being the memory of her daddy. She pushed off and attempted to get up onto his chest and stomach, and Jonghyun was quick to scoop her up.
Rating: G Warnings: fem!Kibum (??) Length: ~790 A/N: Written for the @fytopkey space-themed challenge
She sits at Jonghyun’s kitchen table and it feels like just yesterday that he was making her pancakes while she shivered under the blanket draped on her shoulders. They’d made plans for a court wedding– a small affair with a small audience.
The lines of his face and the slow pace he walks with tell her it’s been longer; much longer.
The expedition was scheduled to last five years. They had reasonable doubt that just some million kilometers south of their solar system was an intersection with another system from another galaxy. They didn’t know how it occurred, or what prompted its occurrence. But when the discovery was first reported there had been an animalistic panic among her colleagues–The gravitational pull between any two star systems alone would’ve meant the perishing of all life in a crush of atoms and molecules.
And yet nothing had happened. No collision, no explosion, no anomaly in the structure of our planets or their moons besides. Nothing besides the oddity of several newcomers.
Gwiboon had volunteered. The rest of the team, too, had raised their arms willingly when the board had asked who would be prepared to take on such a lengthy investigative journey. Obviously, there were risks. The risk of never returning, of being lost in infinite space forever, of encountering an unforeseen danger that they could not surpass with their human strength.
But there was opportunity, as well. Gwiboon understood that. She loved her life outside of work, loved the people in it—she loved Jonghyun very much too. Which was why she had agreed to marry him in the first place.
“Come back,” he had said. “We’ll have the wedding when you’re back.” It was his way of encouraging her; of telling her that he had hope as long as she kept walking, never looking back. She loved him but he was not an anchor. He was her north star. She would find him when the time was right.
But she sits at his table now and he is no longer the Jonghyun she remembers. “What…” she tries, disbelieving. “What happened?”
He is slow to answer, back turned towards her as if hiding something. There is a deep intake of breath that lingers in silence for a moment, then two, and then dissipates. “The first ten years I still had faith,” he finally says. “I fought everyone who said you were gone forever. Even broke a guys nose once!” Jonghyun chuckles but it is an action pointedly bereft of mirth.
“The next ten, I had doubts… I thought—” He stops, as if weighing his words, choosing them wisely. “I thought I made a mistake letting you go. I thought I should’ve stopped you. Begged you not to go when you first mentioned it to me.” His head shakes in remembrance. She looks at the back of it and wishes she could reach out and stroke the salt and pepper hair but he is too far away. Light years away.
“The last ten…” he sighs. “I gave up.”
He finally turns and there is a small cake in his hands. He sets it in front of her. It reads “Happy 30th Anniversary”. Gwiboon feels the urge to recoil from the sight of it. She looks up at Jonghyun through watery eyes and finds him so calm it shocks her. Repels her like a physical force.
This is his way of welcoming her back.
“When they called some days ago,” he continues. “I thought it was to give us the bad news. That you were found–some form of you, at least. And that the mission was a failure. It would’ve given me some…” he frowns. “It would’ve comforted me. That I hadn’t lived my life with false hope.” He nods, more to himself than anyone else. “But they told me you were back. Safe. Successful.”
Gwiboon feels the dread in her stomach levitate. Thirty years… five had turned into thirty in the blink of an eye. The moment they had breached the intersection between the two systems, time had become treacle for them while it continued to flow like water back home. One year studying possibilities of life on another planet had been equal to six years on Earth.
The exploration team had been foolish to think the risks were limited to death in space. They had anticipated threat in the form of alien life, other space exploration teams, unknown space phenomena. But something as simple as time was more horrible than any dangers they could have encountered. It had taken away the part of their lives that mattered the most, and now.
And now Gwiboon sits at Jonghyun’s table, and he sits across from her like a stranger.
Au where Eunsook and Gwiboon play as best friends on this television show, and there’s this episode where one has to act jealous of the other, except Sook doesn’t really need to act jealous, because she is. She’s jealous of the guy. She’s fallen in love with her costar