“But you should take a break. Get something to eat, at least.”
“Here, have some chips.”
“Would you be quiet for a sec and let me work?”
“Okay, okay. But still, when you’re done you should go take a nap and—”
Saeran reached for a stray Honey Buddha chip on the table and threw it at his brother to shut him up. It bounced off his temple and landed on the floor, probably breaking into pieces and leaving behind a trail of crumbs and powder. It was a good thing they had locked the door — MC would have a fit if she came in here and saw the mess that they had turned the room into.
Saeyoung seemed to finally get the hint and reluctantly returned his attention to the computer screen.
“Such a meanie,” he whined, still delusional enough to think that it was cute when he pouted and spoke with a higher pitch like that. It only made Saeran want to throw a pillow at his face. Or maybe something harder. Like a chair.
The younger twin resumed his work with a sigh, trying to fight the sleep weighing his eyelids down. The only good thing about having Saeyoung in here was that he was keeping Saeran irritated enough to stay awake. It had been a while since he needed to work all-nighters like that, after all. It had only been two nights so far and already there had been multiple times when he would find himself nodding off.
His body wasn’t used to being pushed like this anymore, and the accumulated fatigue was bringing back rather unpleasant memories of times when he lived on three hours of sleep a day, at best. Not to mention, there were the splitting headaches that would plague him as he worked. He also remembered taking pitifully quick power naps on his chair, the position so uncomfortable and painful that he would have no choice but to wake up and continue working like his life depended on it.
Back then, his life did depend on it, he supposed. Work or be thrown away. Prove himself useful or be abandoned once again.
But as painful as those memories were, things were different now. He was working together with Saeyoung, to protect each other; to protect their family. Ask him to do something this two years back and he would have vehemently protested. Or try to shoot his own brother before they could even sit down and get started with work.
Above the sound of typing and clicking, Saeran could hear the crunching of chips and the occasional slurp from a can of Phd. Pepper. (Was that Saeyoung’s eleventh can? In one night alone? What the hell?) The room smelled weird from the combination of Honey Buddha chips and Phd. Pepper. The air-conditioning was cold enough to freeze his toes off, and every now and then, Saeyoung would repeatedly ask him to take a break, as if the former didn’t need one himself.
Having worked like this for nearly two days and two nights straight now, Saeran’s mood was souring as quickly as he was losing energy. But as foul as his mood was, Saeran couldn’t say he hated working with his brother all that much.
Because now, at least, he wasn’t alone.
The thought made him feel just a little bit better. Until Saeyoung started crunching obnoxiously loudly on his chips again. He resisted the urge to throw something else at the man. The closest thing he had to him was a large paperweight.
His passing murderous intent dissolved with a yawn, and he went back to looking through the last of the decrypted documents taken from Mint Eye. It was the last file already, and this one didn’t seem to contain helpful information. He was almost too eager to close the file when finally he reached the end.
“Done,” he muttered, gripping the edge of the table and pushing himself backwards, allowing the wheeled chair to roll freely across the floor. He closed his sore eyes and allowed his head to fall with a thump against the back of his soft leather seat.
“Good work, brother! You’re amazing!”
Saeran glanced over at Saeyoung, who was flashing him a thumbs-up from his chair. He blinked a couple of times, eyes darting back and forth from the single raised thumb to Saeyoung’s grin. Eventually, he found the sense to look away instead of staring at his brother like that.
“I-I just… did what I was supposed to do,” he replied slowly, hand reaching up to rub the back of his neck. Why on earth did his face feel so hot from hearing Saeyoung’s words? It was a simple compliment; mere words of appreciation. Nothing that special.
And yet, he couldn’t help the warmth that was pooling in his chest.
He had never been praised for getting his work done before. Not once. The only thing he could look forward to after that was not being told that he was a useless piece of trash, and that there was even more work waiting for him to spend even more sleepless nights on.
“That’s why I’m saying good work,” Saeyoung chuckled, his cheerful voice bringing Saeran out of his reverie. “Thanks for working so hard. Now you really should go to sleep. You look like a zombie.”
That much was true. Saeran could see his reflection in the dark screen of his computer that had gone to sleep. His hair was a huge mess, the size of his eye bags could rival a panda at this point, and he swore he could see the beginnings of a pimple or two forming on his forehead. Ugh. He shouldn’t have eaten so many chips.
Saeran slowly got up from his chair, not appreciating the terrible ache in his back. “Okay. What about you?”
Saeyoung stretched his arms over his head with a lazy yawn as he stood up. “I’m mostly done so I’ll go sleep for a while too. Can’t wait for lovely MC to compliment me for working so hard!” He was already typing away on his phone in glee, most likely sending a message to report to MC that he was finally going to join her in bed, even though she was probably still asleep. It was only 5.37am, after all.
Saeran rolled his eyes, not wanting to stay a second longer with this lovestruck fool. “Whatever. I’m going to bed.”
“Good night! I mean— good morning,lolololol.”
“Just shut up and go to sleep.”
A/N: Thanks for reading ^^ I’m hoping that the full chapter won’t take too long to write itself once the plot details are ironed out. :) Hope everyone’s enjoying their day!