Once you began speaking in a language that was unknown to him, he would instantly become curious. He would slowly lean in while watching you in awe and ask you to repeat the sentence. After doing what he asked for, blushing wildly in embarrassment, you would quietly explain what that actually means. He would be ecstatic and would even want to say it back.
“So? Can you teach me?”
Luhan - Language: Norwegian (”Jeg elsker deg.” )
Luhan won’t hesitate to tell you he didn’t understand the word of what you said and to ask you to translate it for him and when you turned into a blushing, stuttering mess, he would be even more curious. You would blurt out the translation as fast as you could muster, but he understood.
“Oh, okay… Wait, what?!”
Kris - Language: Dutch (”Ik hou van je.”)
Oh, Yi Fan. He wouldn’t be amused at all. He is so proud of the fact that he speaks four languages and, upon hearing the sentence in Dutch, he would frown and start thinking about how he should give himself a well-deserved pat on the back.
“I just had to find a girlfriend who speaks the language I don’t!”
Suho - Language: Greek (”Σ'αγαπώ.”)
At first, he would be very confused and would just stare at you for a few moments. In order not to embarrass himself, he would probably look for familiar sounding words to translate the sentence on his own (failing miserably, of course). But after you explain everything to him, stuttering, with red cheeks, he would beam like a proud mama bird and give you a warm hug.
‘Aigoo, my jagiya is so perfect!’
Lay - Language: Serbian (”Волим те.”)
Yixing would go .jpg in an instant. He still has a hard time dealing with some words in Korean and, upon hearing that weird language you spoke, the only thing he would be able to do is stare at you with a blank expression on his face. But when you pick up the courage to translate the sentence, he would smile widely and hug you tightly, telling you how happy he is and that he feels the same.
Baekhyun - Language: French (”Je t‘aime.”)
Without missing a beat, he would start pretending like he actually understood what you said. He would even reply something like “OUI, OUI, PARIS!” to assure you of that. On the other hand, you would just stand there awkwardly, judging him without a single word. Your demeanor would eventually result in him calming down and asking, in all seriousness, what you just said.
Chen - Language: Italian (”Ti amo.”)
The second you said it, he would drop everything he’s been doing and turn around to glare at you in the weirdest possible way - like you’ve grown two heads or something - wondering what kind of nonsense you are saying.
“What was that?!”
Chanyeol - Language: Russian (”Я тебя люблю.”)
Honestly, he wouldn’t know how to react. He would probably sneak a few glances around to make sure there was someone near to help him out. But since you were the only ones there, he would scratch the back of his neck and think of a simplest thing to say.
Although it was the most important confession of your life, you wouldn’t blame him for saying just simple ‘okay’ - whose fault was it that he reacted like that, after all?
D.O - Language: Danish (”Jeg elsker dig.”)
He wouldn’t say anything. No, he would just stare at you blankly for a few moments before slowly drifting his gaze somewhere else. He might seem passive but, what you didn’t know is that, inside him, there’s a whole battle between his throbbing heart and his sanity, which was persistently reminding him of the language barrier and your not-so-great Korean.
“…What did I get myself into?…”
Tao - Language: Indonesian (”Aku cinta kamu.”)
Obviously, Tao was constantly struggling with Korean, so Indonesian would be an impossible mission for him. However, he wouldn’t want to show you even a smallest sign of weakness, so he’d get defensive, making fun of you by copying your voice and pronouncing the sentence incorrectly.
“You think you’re so smart… So annoying.”
Kai - Language: Spanish (”Te amo.”)
The two of you would take Monggu out for a walk in the park and you decided it was the perfect timing for the confession since there weren’t other members around to ruin the moment. But the second you stopped him and looked into his eyes, words wouldn’t come out. Instead, in panic, you spoke in Spanish. Jongin would stare at you blankly before giving you a small smile and picking Monggu up, bringing him closer to his face as he spoke quietly.
“Do you know what she said?”
Sehun - Language: German (”Ich liebe dich.”)
The first thing he would do upon hearing an unfamiliar language is pout. Since he’s the youngest and kinda childish, it would come out as an instinct of some sort. Then, of course, another natural thing for him to do would be to call one of his hyungs to help him… Which probably wouldn’t be a good idea.
Another GF fic for all you fellow GF fans! Woo! This time, I was inspired by the super cool @kiki-kit and her art post, and so thank you SO much to her for giving me the idea of something to write again!
Nothing scary or intense in this fic - just nice and fluffy, with some feels towards the end.
I hope you all enjoy it, and thanks for reading! And the riddle was completely made up my yours truly - blame me if it’s corny or convoluted lol
“Mabel! Box from the Grunkles!” Dipper immediately heard a distant excited shriek, and the sound grew louder as his twin tore up the stairs and into his room. She bounced and capered around noisily while her brother carefully opened the travel-battered cardboard box swathed in packing tape. There were several smaller boxes inside amidst the mounds of packing peanuts - some held treats, trinkets, and other unusuals for the kids to share. Mabel found an envelope wedged against the inside of the box and proceeded to open it while Dipper carefully removed a shapeless wad of bubble wrap from the bottom. The word ‘FRAGILE’ was scrawled in black ink across its uneven surface.
“'Hey kiddos…’” Mabel had begun to read the contents of the envelope out loud, but paused momentarily with a grin. “Grunkle Stan’s writing this time for sure. 'Ford was busy with testing the latest thing we found, so I figured I’d give you the rundown. Share the goodies and stuff as usual, but be very careful with the last package.’” She glanced at her brother, who had begun snipping the tape off of the bubble wrap. “'We found this on one of our stops.’”
“A mirror?” Dipper asked in a curious tone as he held up an antique hand mirror, its silvery handle and backing tarnished with age.
Mabel scanned the letter again. “Says Grunkle Ford found it in a pawn shop when they were in some coastal town in France.” She batted her eyelashes. “Ah, oui oui Paris!”
“What’s so special about it?” Dipper switched the mirror for the letter and sped-read while Mabel began making goofy faces at her reflection. “Apparently, one of Ford’s devices detected some sort of anomaly while in the shop,” he continued, answering his own question. “Turns out it was this old mirror. And that same frequency showed up not too much farther down the coast when they initially left - they found the second one buried in a network of shallow caves.” Dipper reached out for the object while still perusing the letter until his sister handed it to him. He then studied it closely, flipping it over and back again, and inspecting the flowery designs etched in the handle. “But it’s just some old mirror. How would it have some sort of resonance? It doesn’t look or feel any different.”
“Well of course it’s not going to look all magical and stuff, you melon,” Mabel quipped. She found a gray sweater in the package and immediately pulled it on before noticing the pink Eiffel Tower on it. “Even I shouldn’t have to tell you that, of all people. Besides, you haven’t finished the letter - there’s probably going to be more details about it there!”
Dipper grinned in spite of himself. “I know,” he drawled sarcastically, “keep your sweater on!” His eyes went back to the crinkled paper. “'Ford hasn’t even shown me how these things work - says it’s going to be a surprise for me, too. You should’ve seen him, all excited about these mirrors. He’s got something up his sleeve, and I’ll be just as surprised as you both when he finally tells all about them. Anyway, you kids be good, and we’ll hopefully talk soon. I miss you both a lot, and Ford does too. Love, Grunkle Stan.’”
Mabel snagged the mirror back and took her turn of peering at the details. “Figures that Grunkle Ford would want to make it a surprise for everyone. So what are we supposed to do with it? Are there instructions or something?”
“Actually, yes.” Dipper had turned over the letter to reveal a short paragraph. “It’s Ford’s handwriting this time. Listen to this: 'We found a note with the second mirror that had only one sentence written on it…’”
Mabel’s eyes were like saucers.
“'Face the mirror and speak its reflection.’” Dipper frowned thoughtfully for a moment, and then eyed himself in the glassy surface. “Dipper…?” he asked hesitantly.
Mabel reached her hand out, opening and closing it rapidly. “Lemme try.” She grasped the handle firmly with both hands and thundered, “MABEL.” In the silence that followed, the girl blinked at the antique, and then shook it off to one side. “Batteries must be dead.”
“That’s the only clue we have,” Dipper went on, scratching his auburn hair as he scanned the letter once again. “And there’s nothing else in the letter; Ford must’ve written that last bit later so Stan wouldn’t see and try to guess.” “Well then, let’s try and figure it out on our own!”
Dipper eyed his twin warily. “You mean that? You’re not going to get distracted and do something else?”
Mabel opened her mouth to protest, paused, closed it, and fluttered her eyes demurely with a tilt of her head. “I cannot confirm or deny such accusations.”
In the end, Dipper had to hand it to his sister, who could usually be distracted by the faintest flicker of glitter - she stuck out the tedious guesswork that went into figuring out the mirror’s mystery. He could tell she struggled at times with wanting to move on to something more interesting, and yet she stayed, though not without her usual plethora of corny jokes and comments not pertaining to the task at hand.
Rubbing one eye unconsciously, Dipper glanced over his shoulder at the digital clock on his nightstand - they’d been working on the mystery for well over a half hour, and had nothing to show for it. He stared glumly into the mirror for what could have been the hundredth time, and this time he let his gaze wander over the reflection behind him. Any posters, pictures or other items in his room were reversed, including the numbers on the clock. The calendar on the wall near the door caught his waning attention, and he read the month backwards without much thought at first. Then the realization of what he had just done dawned on him.
“Mabel,” he said slowly, still staring in the mirror. “I think I’ve got something.”
The girl lifted her face from the floor, where she had been trying to braid a portion of her hair with her arms behind her head. "Well?”
“It might be completely dumb, but write down the word 'mirror’ for me.”
Wordlessly, Mabel left the room, and returned a moment later with a sparkly notebook and a multicolored pen with a fluffy topper. She scribbled out the word and turned it towards her brother. “There.”
Dipper turned the mirror around so its reflection was facing the word. “Now read what it says,” he told Mabel.
Shrugging, Mabel peered at the reflection. “Rorrim?”
A glowing aura erupted silently around the mirror’s edge, causing Dipper to drop it in shock, and both siblings lurched back. After a breathless moment, they crept forward and leaned in to look at the mirror. The glow had subsided, though not utterly, and the reflection showed a ceiling of dark, rough wood planks. Mabel immediately looked up, but Dipper knew already that it wasn’t their ceiling in the mirror.
“What is it?” the girl asked in a hushed, eager tone.
“The real question is where,” Dipper replied as he lifted the mirror. Tentatively, he reached out a finger to tap the glass, but instead, his finger went straight through the frame. Dipper gasped and jerked his hand away.
“Woah!” Mabel scooched closer and, true to form, stuck her hold hand into the mirror without any further pause. She kept going until the frame was up to her shoulder. Giggling, she waved her arm in apparent empty space. “It’s like another dimension!”
Dipper was grinning. “I think I know exactly where it is! Feel around and see if there’s anything there.”
Mabel’s expression pinched in concentration as she moved her arm within the confines of the antique frame. “Feels like something wooden underneath. I think it’s resting on a table?”
Suddenly, they both heard a familiar voice, punctuating each barking word. “What…in the h–!”
“Stanley, hold it!”
Mabel yanked her arm back out of the mirror incredulously. “Grunkle Stan?!”
The image within the mirror rose and blurred slightly before resting on the owlish face of Stanford Pines. “Hey, there they are!” he cried happily. “They figured it out! Look, Stanley!”
While Dipper and Mabel watched with growing delight, the view turned to reveal a very startled-looking Stanley Pines. His grizzled face immediately lit up upon seeing the kids. “Hey you two!” he crowed. Then he turned and jabbed a finger at his twin’s shoulder. “OK, buster, they figured it out. So tell us what it is!”
“All right, all right,” Ford chuckled, and seated himself. “First of all, I’ll say that I haven’t finished my research on these mirrors yet, but I do know enough about them to say with confidence that they won’t have any sort of consequences or side effects.” He raised two fingers solemnly. “Scouts honor.”
“We trust you, Grunkle Ford,” Dipper chimed in. “I mean, Mabel already stuck her whole arm through the mirror, and there’s nothing wrong.”
“Yup! No extra limbs or different colored skin here,” added Mabel.
“And that’s the neat part of these mirrors,” Ford went on. “Whether by ingenious design, or some sort of old science or magic, they allow the users to physically interact with each other, no matter the distance. Here–” The view shifted again, revealing Stan’s still-incredulous face. “–try it out, Stanley!”
One of Stan’s eyebrows shot up. “What do you want me to do?” he asked at his brother.
Taking the initiative, Mabel reached through the glass and poked her great uncle’s nose. “Boop!” She nodded encouragingly as a smile began to spread on Stan’s face. “See? Now gimme a high five!”
There was still a bit of hesitation in Stan’s reaction, so the high five was not as exuberant as the young teen had anticipated. “Oh come on, Grunkle Stan,” Mabel drawled, and pressed her hand against his. “It’s not gonna hurt or anything!”
“It’s just…kinda mind blowing, kiddo,” the older man explained almost sheepishly. “I’m not used to high-fiving a reflection, much less one that isn’t my own!” Yet Mabel’s hand now gripped his own in the familiar, comforting way that he remembered so well, and a wave of nostalgia rose inside him. He suddenly missed the kids. A lot. “But it’s great to see you in person, sort of, and to get a handshake, too!” he said quickly, steering clear of any gushy emotions.
“Sorry it can’t be a hug!” Mabel’s expression was bittersweet as she patted her uncle’s broad knuckles, proving she meant what she said.
Stanley’s returning grin was wry. Me, too, punkin. He turned his gaze to Dipper and called, “Hey, Dip, lean in for a minute - I wanna try something, now that I’m getting the hang of this!”
Dipper leaned forward curiously, and found himself suddenly caught under a rough but well-meaning noogie - Stan had stuffed his arm into the frame as far as it would allow and managed to reach his nephew’s head with his knuckles. Laughing and swatting at the arm sticking out of the mirror, Dipper managed to escape and pass the antique to Mabel.
“This is so great, Grunkle Ford,” the girl stated joyfully. “Now we’ll be able to give presents back and forth without spending money on shipping costs!”
“Just don’t go over-using its abilities,” the old scientist warned gently. “I don’t know if it has limited uses, or whether any of those side effects we mentioned might come about because of frequent usage. I don’t mean to scare you both - I’m just being realistic.”
Dipper nodded exuberantly. “We’ll be sure to send an email first, just to double check when the timing is right!”
The four talked for a long while, both sets of twins sharing stories of any recent adventures and experiences. By the time dinner was called for Mabel and Dipper, the lighting in the Grunkles’ cabin was decidedly brighter. Ford reminded them all that the time zones were different, and how they’d have to keep it in mind for the future. They ended their visit on that note, with evident reluctance. The last thing Mabel and Dipper saw was their Grunkles faces grinning at them, and hearing Ford’s voice say firmly, “Rorrim return.” Then the glass of the mirror seemed to fade in color and light, and was soon just as normal as any other mirror.
*** Despite any air conditioning, some summer nights in Piedmont, CA could be awfully humid. This was one of those nights, and Mabel awoke in a sheen of sweat. She had been in the midst of a vivid dream, though she did not remember any details. It had certainly not been frantic, like some of the nightmares she had pertaining to the terrors of Weirdmageddon (and those she remembered well, unfortunately), but it had been distressing enough. A terrible aching feeling weighed down her normally spirited heart because of it, and it reminded her of when Grunkle Stan had not recognized her. That had happened over a year ago, and the memory of it still haunted the young teen.
She rose, uncomfortable in the mugginess of her room, and slipped out to get a glass of water. On her way back, she paused by Dipper’s door, listening for a moment, and then silently entered. Her brother was sound asleep, amazingly enough, cocooned in a comforter (he was always complaining of being cold). Mabel waited until her eyes adjusted to the darkness, and then moved to the dresser against the wall; Dipper had placed the mirror there when they had gone to dinner hours before.
When she was safely back in her room with the antique mirror, Mabel climbed back onto her bed and held the mirror close to her face. “Rorrim,” she murmured, and darkness around her receded as the old mirror sprang to life in its enchantment. The sounds of the ocean became more audible - waves rising, falling, and lapping, the odd seagull yammering for food, and the distant rumble of the Stan O’ War 2’s engine. Even the smell of the sea was strong, and Mabel could not help but smile at the wonder of the mirror’s magic.
The view was of the ceiling again, the mirror having been left on the small dining table. Mabel slowly put her hand through the surface and wiggled her fingers on the other side, but there was no reaction. She raised her voice and called out, “Grunkle Stan?” There was no response.
She had placed the mirror on the bed beside her, content to listen to the calming ocean ambiance, when she heard a soft thump. The view blurred as the opposite mirror was lifted, and then Grunkle Stan’s face leaned in, eyes bleary and iron-gray hair tousled. “Hey sweetie,” he greeted, his voice quiet and gravelly. “You caught me napping.” He blinked and stifled a yawn. “Isn’t it late on your end? You need to be sleeping!”
Mabel couldn’t stop the words from tumbling out in rapid succession. “I couldn’t. It’s too muggy in my room, and I think I had a bad dream. And I’m sorry, I forgot to email first before using the mirror. I just…needed some company.”
Stan’s face had softened upon hearing the word 'nightmare.’ “Don’t worry, punkin, I’m here for ya,” he replied, shuffling back to his bunk. “You wanna talk about it?”
Mabel shrugged. “I don’t remember any of it, so I guess there’s not much to tell.” She swallowed the tightness in her throat before admitting, “Just the feeling of it reminded me of how I felt when you…when you didn’t remember me that one time.”
The older man’s breath caught, and his tiredness vanished. “Mabel, honey, are you gonna be ok?”
“…talking with you helps.”
Stanley watched his niece stroke her long hair while her big doe eyes looked elsewhere sadly. He had known the gut-wrench of being helpless in far too many situations in his life, and this time was definitely high on the list. “I’ll talk with you as long as you need me to, punkin,” he soothed. He hated knowing Mabel was sad, much less seeing it and yet not being able to be there in person to comfort her. This was a role reversal he dreaded.
As though reading his mind, Mabel looked up and reached her hand through the mirror - it seemed smaller than Stan remembered as he took it in his own. The girl smiled - a small one, but genuine nonetheless - and said, “This will definitely help.”
“Then that’s just fine.” Stan squeezed his niece’s hand and looked her in the eyes from over his glasses. “Now listen up, ok? You’re Mabel Pines, my favorite niece and partner in crime. I’m your Grunkle Stan, and I always will be, and I love you dearly, and I won’t be forgetting that any time soon. And you’re going to be just fine. You hear me?”
Mabel’s eyes seemed to turn liquid with the tears that welled in them, and her braces glimmered in the magical light as she grinned from ear to ear. “Loud and clear, sir,” she squeaked softly, and her fingers laced into her great uncle’s own with a fierce hope.
“That’s my girl,” Stan replied proudly, and eased himself back onto his bunk.
*** Some time later, Ford ducked into the cabin, a pencil clenched in his teeth and another stuck behind his ear as he scanned some papers. “Shtanley,” he called around the pencil, still looking at his notes. “My chrrting shaysh we’ll be good to shail on for another–” He had glanced up towards the table, expecting to see his brother there, but paused at the sight of Stanley lying on his bed. His twin was fast asleep, his mouth slightly agape to let out the occasional purring snore. The enchanted mirror lay on one side of his broad chest, and one of his hands held a smaller one that reached out of the mirror’s surface.
Ford took the pen out of his mouth to allow a fond smile. It seemed there was always some way for the kids to be present in the old men’s lives, more so now with the help of the mirrors. He wouldn’t have it any other way, and knew Stanley would fight anyone who suggested otherwise. The older scientist moved closer and looked into the 'reflection’ - he could just make out the long auburn hair and delicate features of his niece Mabel from the magical light. Must’ve been a rough night for Mabel to need her Grunkle so soon, he thought somewhat sadly, and lightly patted her hand; she, in turn, smacked her lips in her sleep.
And now, to take care of you, too, Ford thought as he eyed his twin. He took Stanley’s boots off and covered him with a blanket, making sure not to jostle his brother’s hand. As much as Mabel needed Stanley, it was more than obvious that he needed her, too, and Ford was glad of that. It makes for a far less brooding and grumpy brother, he mused. And that goes for us both. Those kids gave us our lives back, to be sure. He’d thought of that hundreds of times by now, but he never tired of repeating it in his mind.
Smiling down at Stanley and the reflection of their niece, Ford gathered his papers and tip-toed out of the cabin, and back into the balmy sea breezes that warmed the deck, relishing the tranquility it offered both above and below deck.