He hadn’t seen Jongin in nearly twenty-four hours. This was normal, since Jongin worked all day then spent the night at the dance studio most days of the week. In the mornings of his days-off, few and far between, Sehun woke up to Jongin by his side, and they laid like this, Sehun with his head on Jongin’s chest, counting his heartbeats while Jongin let off steam about the frantic life he leads by his own decision.
Sehun often asks Jongin why he doesn’t arrange his work days so that they don’t overlap with his dance practices even though he knows better. Jongin says the same thing every time: if he changes his work schedule he won’t be able to afford what he needs for dance and their rent. Sehun nods, pretends to agree, but still asks the question again next time. Part of him asks because he’s worried about Jongin’s health. The other part of him asks because he’s selfish and wants to see Jongin more than for just a few hours a week.
When Sehun asks again this time, though, he doesn’t expect the answer that he gets. “Last night, seonsaengnim said he was going to select five of us to compete in the national championship. He told me, personally, that I was one of those five... so if I keep working hard, I can win and quit my job.”
“What’s the prize?” Sehun asks, and his stomach starts to ache because he’s scared to hear just how much is on the line.
“First place gets one hundred million won,” Jongin says, and Sehun gasps inaudibly. “Second place gets fifty million, and third place gets ten million. Imagine what we could do with one hundred million won...”
Sehun doesn’t want to imagine. His idea of imagining is hoping that if Jongin wins, he’ll not only quit his job but quit dancing professionally because he sees the toll it takes on his body. Far too many times has Sehun had to massage kinks out of muscles and run a hot bath and wash Jongin himself because his muscles are too fatigued to do even that. Jongin looks beautiful, almost like a gazelle on two legs, when he dances but he’s tired of seeing him in pain.
“You’ll do your best,” Sehun says, toying idly with the hem of Jongin’s teeshirt. It’s an older shirt and the serge stitch had begun to unravel, so Sehun liked to hook his finger in the fold the cloth made there. “I believe in you.”
Sehun used to take offense when his friends jokingly called him Jongin’s wife. They called him that because he was notoriously domestic, even before he and Jongin moved in together. He wasn’t trying to be the wife in the relationship, it just sort of happened that way.
His feelings changed when Jongin thanked him for being so diligent, for giving him some peace and structure to return to on his busiest days. He thanked him so sincerely that they both cried, laughing and kissing through their tears, and it stayed with Sehun long after that. His friends still called him Jongin’s wife after that, but he took it with stride. He decided it was better to be known as a housewife than to be branded a careless boyfriend.
It’s because of this that Sehun cooks breakfast on those mornings when Jongin isn’t trying to get as much sleep as he can before he runs off to work. He lets Jongin sleep and he quietly putters about, taking his shower and brushing his teeth and brushing his hair, then turning on the rice cooker and putting the kettle on the stove. Sehun isn’t much of a cook, but he’s been told he can work magic when it comes to eggs, so he cracks a couple into a hot pan and scrambles them up. The kettle whistles and the rice cooker beeps just as the eggs cook up fluffy and yellow-white. He toasts some bread while he meticulously scoops the rice into palm-sized bowls and draws the tea, and he doesn’t realize Jongin’s been watching him from the archway until he’s sandwiching the scrambled eggs between warm slices of toast.
“That looks delicious,” Jongin says, a grateful smile on his face. “Smells good, too.” He takes a seat as Sehun shuffles back and forth from the kitchen to the table with the food and tea. He notices Sehun giving him a look on one of these return trips and he laughs. “What are you looking at me like that for?”
“You know I can’t stand it when you eat without brushing your teeth first,” Sehun says from the kitchen.
Jongin chuckles. “I brushed my teeth already, Mom..”
“No, you didn’t, I didn’t even hear you get up,” Sehun says, returning with his egg sandwich and rice. Jongin opens his mouth up toward Sehun and lets out an ahhhh and like clockwork, Sehun leans in and sniffs. “Fine. I guess you’re quieter than I give you credit for.”
Sehun doesn’t mind that they eat in silence that morning, because the subtle intimacy of Jongin gingerly rubbing his socked foot against Sehun’s says more than words ever could.
For as long as they’d been together, Sehun had been toying with the idea of sitting in on one of Jongin’s dance practices. There wasn’t much to it; the building that practices were held in was open to virtually anyone and Sehun could walk right in and take a seat against the wall with no questions asked, but he was scared to do it.
He was scared of being there to see Jongin get hurt. He’d only ever experienced Jongin’s injuries when he came limping home or crouched over because that was the only way he felt minimal pain, and seeing him that way pained him enough. He couldn’t imagine seeing him get injured right before his eyes.
Sehun casts aside his fears, though, and takes a walk down to the building where Jongin practices. Jongin had mentioned on the phone earlier that day that his instructor was making a formal announcement on who he selected to participate in the national championship, and Sehun could tell that Jongin wanted him to be there. Sehun felt obligated to go, since he was the only person who consistently gave Jongin support.
A girl masquerading as a secretary, sitting on the floor outside of the practice door rooms with a laptop, greets Sehun when he attempts to make his way in. “Are you coming to watch?” she asks, and Sehun nods. “Do you know someone in there?”
“Yeah, Jongin,” he replies.
“I’m only asking because they’re working on a new routine and seonsaengnim told me to keep the guests to a minimum. Only two other people have shown up before you, but I’ll ask and then let you inside.” She sets her laptop aside and scrambles to her feet, and when she opens the door to speak to the instructor, Sehun catches a glimpse of Jongin. Sweat glues his hair and clothes to his skin, and he’s breathing hard as if they just got finished running through the choreography.
When Sehun sees him like that, he can’t believe it took him so long to come and watch Jongin practice. After all, it was seeing Jongin that way that caused him to fall for him in the first place.
Sehun’s aversion to Jongin’s love of dance didn’t come from a place of disliking dance; in fact, the two of them met at the auditions for an intramural dance team in college. Jongin had been dragged along by their now-mutual friend Jongdae, who loudly exclaimed that Jongin knew how to dance but was too shy to show off his talent. Jongdae pushed Jongin into the circle of other auditioners that formed in the center of the room and someone started some music. After some prodding and chants of encouragement, Jongin started to dance, and Sehun went from being amused to being completely, utterly, stupidly infatuated.
He dismissed it as a crush then, but a week later when he showed up late for practice and he saw Jongin literally dripping wet with sweat but still practicing while everyone else sat to the side chugging water, he knew it wasn’t that minor. And so, Sehun spoke to him, and the rest was history.
“Okay, you can come in,” the girl says upon returning from inside of the practice room. She smiles and Sehun smiles back before he opens the door and steps inside.
He tries to remain unnoticed as he watches Jongin stretch in a corner of the practice room, waiting for the instructor to finish explaining a section of the choreography to a few other students. The mirrored wall parallel to the wall Sehun sits against betrays him, however, and Jongin stops mid-stretch, an incredulous look on his face.
Jongin turns around as if he’s getting ready to cross the room and give Sehun a formal hello, but at that same instant the instructor claps his hands together and announces that they’re going to start from the top and then break for the night. Sehun mouths a “hi” and Jongin winks, and even after all this time the gesture still makes Sehun’s stomach twist itself into knots.
The type of dance that Jongin does now is different from the one they practiced at school; it’s a fusion of ballet and contemporary, a lot of spins and lifts and stretches and jumps and rolls. It all looks way too frantic and Sehun gets lost just watching, but in the midst of it all, Jongin appears graceful and moves effortlessly. Every now and again, Jongin steals a look in Sehun’s direction, holding the gaze for as long as he can before he needs to move on to the next step. Sehun finds himself hoping the music will stop soon because that means he’s that much closer to grabbing Jongin and kissing him like he’s wishing he could.
“Okay, before you all leave, I want to announce my picks for the national championship,” the instructor says as the music shuts off and Sehun pulls himself to his feet. “Like I said before, I’m choosing five of you. The five of you will perform as a group for the first portion of the championship, which is unscored; you’ll just dance to represent that you’re all from the same company. Then you each have a one-and-a-half minute solo that you’ll be in charge of creating. Got it?” The group nods in sync with each other, and the instructor goes over to a chair with a pile of papers stacked on it. “When I call your name, step forward and get your application and waiver.”
It seems like a lifetime even though they both know Jongin’s name is on the list. He’s the last one called, and he smiles broadly and accepts his application from the instructor. They’re officially dismissed and Sehun helps Jongin gather his things and tries not to look to smitten when Jongin slings an arm around his waist.
“I was surprised to see that you showed up,” Jongin says. “I wasn’t expecting it. Hoping, yes, but expecting it?”
“I wanted to see you,” Sehun says, and he stifles a laugh as Jongin playfully tickles the crook of his waist. “I thought it would be nice to celebrate tonight rather than in the morning before you ran off to work.”
“Celebrate, huh?” Jongin says, holding the door open so that they can walk out into the balmy night air. “What do you have in mind?”
Sehun gives Jongin a sly smile and shrugs his shoulders. “You’ll have to see once we get back home.”
Sehun doesn’t argue when Jongin insist that he take a shower before they begin their celebration; it gives him time to prepare and make everything perfect. He goes into the closet and takes down the big box of candles his grandmother had given to him but he never had the opportunity to use; he lights a couple and places them in their holders. Once he has them assembled just the way he wants, he turns off the lights and smiles as tones of apples and cinnamon fill the air.
He places a few towels on the bed, unfolds one and puts the rest on one of the pillows. By the time he hears Jongin shut the shower off, he’s got massage oil at the ready on the bedside table and he quickly dresses down to just his underwear and sits on the edge of the bed. He can’t fight laughter when Jongin walks in and stops in his tracks, caught off-guard by the romantic display.
“What are you doing?” Jongin asks with a chuckle, shaking the water out of his hair with his towel.
“Your muscles must be really tired, so I’m going to massage them,” Sehun replies, following Jongin with his eyes as he crosses the room.
“Should I bother getting dressed, or...?” Jongin pulls open his underwear drawer and Sehun nods.
“Just that, though,” he says, and Jongin gives him a look. “How can I massage you if you’re fully dressed? Massage oil stains, you know.”
“You even got oil? Wow, look at you, pulling out all the stops like that,” Jongin jokes, unwrapping the towel around his hips to put on a pair of boxers. He throws the towel into a hamper and makes his way over to the bed, where Sehun instructs him to lay on his stomach on top of the unfolded towel.
Jongin grunts a little when Sehun sits straddled across his lower back and leans over to get the bottle of massage oil. He unscrews the top and tilts it only slightly, letting the oil drizzle onto Jongin’s skin. He recaps it and sets it aside, then digs the heels of his hands into the oil and begins his massage.
Sehun feels Jongin relax under his palms, hears the grateful sigh flow from his lips. He puts his hands flat against Jongin’s back and runs them upward until his fingers curl around his shoulders and his thumbs slide up Jongin’s neck. Sehun rubs slow circles with his thumbs, gently applying pressure to the taut muscles in Jongin’s shoulders, and leans forward to kiss the crown of Jongin’s head. His hair smells nice, like zinnias and grapefruit, so Sehun leaves his nose buried there for a while. Jongin shakes with quiet laughter beneath him and Sehun presses another kiss there before he sits up again.
“Alright, turn over,” Sehun says, moving aside and wiping the excess oil from his hands and Jongin’s back with one of the extra towels. Jongin flips onto his back and Sehun straddles him again, massage oil in hand.
“You work magic with those hands,” Jongin remarks, taking Sehun’s empty hand to his lips and kissing his fingers.
“I take that to mean you feel a lot better now,” Sehun says, letting his thumb drag on Jongin’s bottom lip as he takes his hand back. Jongin nods and Sehun smiles. “Well, good. That’s what I wanted to happen.”
Sehun pours a short, steady stream of massage oil onto Jongin’s chest, puts the cap back on the bottle and puts it on the bedside table, then gently rubs his hands into it and smears it across Jongin’s skin. Jongin lets his hands rest on the backs of Sehun’s thighs, and their eyes meet when Jongin gets a bit bold and slides his fingers into the legs of Sehun’s boxer-briefs.
“What’re you looking at me like that for?” Jongin asks with a smile. “Can’t I give you a massage, too?”
Sehun doesn’t protest, as he has no reason to. He remains composed as Jongin’s hands find the curve of his ass and give it a squeeze, then humors him by letting his hips rock back and forth as he pushes the heels of his hands along the prominent ridge of Jongin’s collarbones.
As he leans forward, his hands slide toward and down Jongin’s arms, then stop at his wrists in the same instant that their lips meet. Sehun beckons for Jongin to dig the pads of his fingers into his skin again, and he does, rolling his own hips up to meet Sehun’s in the process.
A sigh leaves Sehun’s mouth when Jongin gently pulls on his bottom lip with his teeth, and when he releases it he pulls Sehun right back in with a flick of his tongue.
“I want to take these off of you,” Jongin whispers between kisses, sliding his hands out and tugging at the legs of Sehun’s underwear. Sehun sits back and Jongin pulls the boxer-briefs off of him. Sehun feels Jongin hard against the back of his thigh, and the moment Jongin removes the underwear from around Sehun’s ankles he gets onto his knees and presses kisses to the warm, solid bulge of Jongin’s boxers.
Jongin cards his fingers through Sehun’s hair as he pulls down on the waistband of Jongin’s boxers, beckoning him closer. Sehun gazes up at Jongin as he folds his hand around his cock and drags his tongue upward along the shaft. Jongin groans when Sehun slides his hand down and replaces it with his mouth, and after a few quasi-tentative licks his mouth and hand are moving in time with each other.
Sehun’s other hand embraces Jongin’s thigh, oil-slicked fingers caressing his skin. He feels Jongin tense up under his fingers as he lifts his hips to delve deeper into Sehun’s mouth and groans softly.
After taking him in deep and then backing off to flick his tongue around the head of Jongin’s cock, Sehun sits back and pulls Jongin’s boxers the rest of the way off. Jongin says nothing when Sehun grabs the bottle of massage oil again, pours a bit into his hand, then rubs his palms together, his skin glistening in the candlelight. He lets Sehun push his legs open a bit more and his eyes flutter shut when Sehun works two fingers inside of him.
“You’re pampering me in all sorts of ways tonight,” Jongin comments breathily, back arching off of the bed when Sehun hooks his fingers suddenly. He pulls Sehun on top of him and wraps his fingers around the back of his neck, kissing him hard on the mouth. Sehun slips his tongue between Jongin’s lips then sucks on his lower lip, thrusting his fingers faster when Jongin moans audibly.
Sehun sits back on his haunches again, slides his fingers out of Jongin and starts to stroke himself, slicking himself up with the oil still left on his hand. Jongin eagerly pulls his legs back with his hands on the crooks of his knees and, equally as eager to give Jongin what he wants, Sehun presses the head of his cock against Jongin’s opening. He teases him like this, only relenting when Jongin mewls uncharacteristically a “baby please” and attempts to push himself up onto Sehun’s cock. He thrusts shallowly as he lays chest-to-chest with Jongin again, kissing him slowly and gripping his hips tightly.
Jongin wraps his legs around Sehun’s waist, effectively pulling him closer and forcing him deeper. Jongin tangles his fingers in Sehun's hair and gives his head a pull upwards so that he can lick a wet stripe up his neck and leave marks when he sucks and nibbles at his taut, milky skin. Sehun plants his hands into the bed to give him some leverage as he pounds into Jongin, who instantly drops his hands and claws at the towel beneath them. His fingers find Sehun's and they intertwine them there for a bit, until Sehun moves to put their hands above Jongin's head.
"It's been a while, hasn't it?" Sehun says, slowing his thrusts and panting. Jongin knows what he means without him saying it; his busy schedule hardly left them any time to get intimate to this degree.
"It's worth the wait," Jongin replies, and with a smile Sehun leans down and kisses him again. Afterwards, he pulls out and Jongin rolls onto his side; Sehun sidles up behind him, lifts Jongin's leg and re-enters him.
Jongin sighs as Sehun loves him with deep, slow thrusts, his face nestled into his neck and his other arm wrapped around him to stroke his cock. He reaches back and fists Sehun's hair again, quivering at the sensation of his boyfriend's warm breath on the short hairs at the nape of his head.
"I love you," Sehun whispers, kissing Jongin's shoulder.
"I love you too," Jongin whispers back. He pushes his hips back and stops Sehun from continuing so that he can roll the two of them over onto their backs.
Jongin knows that Sehun wants to protest this -- the theme of the night seemed to be that Sehun did all the work and Jongin relaxed -- but he also knows that Sehun knows better. As Jongin starts to ride him, Sehun hesitantly lets his hands rest on his hips, then seems to have a change of heart as he holds tighter. He even assists him, gently guiding his hips up and down and bucking his own hips every now and again as if rewarding Jongin. Jongin knows when Sehun is losing his battle to hold out when Sehun's hands fall away from him and he groans aloud, exonerating Jongin with affirmations and babys and just like thats -- and then he spills hot inside of him, panting wildly.
Jongin grabs another spare towel from the pillow as he pulls off of Sehun, cleaning off himself and his lover. Sehun laughs nervously and bats away Jongin's hand, mumbling something about being too sensitive now and Jongin takes the hint. "What about me?" Jongin asks with mock insolence, and Sehun looks at him.
"Just give me a minute," Sehun responds, but Jongin shakes his head and walks over on his knees closer to him. "What?"
"Roll over," Jongin says, and then it's Sehun's turn to shake his head. "Please, baby..."
"This is supposed to be your night," Sehun whines. "I'm supposed to spoil you, why do you ruin my plans?"
"You've spoiled me enough," Jongin says, leaning over and kissing Sehun's chest. "And, if you ask me, letting me fuck you too would spoil me even more."
Satisfied with Jongin's reasoning, Sehun gets on his knees and lays his arms against the headboard. Jongin uses what's left of the massage oil to slicken himself and pushes into Sehun. He interlocks their fingers where Sehun's hands sit flat against the headboard and scatters kisses up his backbone as he speeds up his thrusts.
By the time they're both spent, all of the wicks on all of the candles have burnt so low that the flames extinguish themselves in the melted wax.
Sehun doesn't see much of Jongin after that night. Jongin got pardoned from work so that he could travel to Incheon to prepare for the national championship, and their contact was limited to quick phone calls in the morning after Jongin woke up and at night before Jongin went to sleep.
Sehun grapples with telling Jongin how he feels about all of this, about how he wants Jongin to quit because the distance was becoming too painful. Sehun became busier with work after Jongin left so he didn't even have time to take a train into Incheon and visit him for the day. He hid his disappointment when they spoke but more times than he was willing to admit he spent his morning showers crying and his nights trying to fall asleep snuggled with Jongin's pillow because it smelled like him.
But he keeps his opinions to himself. Jongin loved dancing second to how much he loved Sehun; he admitted that himself. It wouldn't be fair for Sehun to drag Jongin away from his second love because he was pitiful when he wasn't by his side at all times. He considers the fact that Jongin might resent him for doing that to him, too, and that is the last thing he wants to happen.
So, instead, he counts the days. He asks his boss for the weekend of the competition off and his request is honored. He goes to the train station and buys a ticket to Incheon and stops at a flower shop on the way to Jongin's hotel to buy a bouquet of flowers because he doesn’t want to show up empty-handed. The joy he feels when he walks into the lobby and sees Jongin sitting there waiting for him leaves him speechless, and all he can think is that this was how Jongin felt when he danced. He can't take that away from him, and he won't.
Jongin sweeps every portion of the competition and Sehun cheers for him the entire time. There's no way he couldn't; he was seeing Jongin's performances for the first time and with every jump and roll and pirouette Sehun finds himself breathless. Jongin shoots up from the top 100 to the top 50, from the top 50 to the top 25, from the top 25 to the top 10, and from the top 10 to the top 5.
They start to announce the winners and runners-up and Sehun sits on the edge of his seat, holding his breath. He claps wildly when Jongin's name isn't called for fifth and fourth place, then falls silent again when someone rolls out a cart with the trophies.
"The second runner-up is..." Sehun closes his eyes, holds his breath -- then lets it out when the name that leaves the announcer's mouth doesn't belong to Jongin. He's shaking with excitement now; even if Jongin hadn't placed first he'd still won and that was all that matters.
"The first runner-up is..." Sehun squeezes his eyes shut again, holds his breath -- then shrieks when yet another name that isn't Jongin's is announced. It takes every fiber of his being not to run onto the stage and jump into Jongin's arms and congratulate him, but once he sees Jongin crying hysterically as the confetti falls and they hand him his trophy, Sehun is suddenly too overcome to move. They cry together, hundreds of feet and people apart.
"I only cried because I heard you scream," Jongin says defensively when Sehun treats him to dinner.
"Why would that make you cry? I thought you'd laugh," Sehun asks.
Jongin shrugs. "I don't know. You never seemed to care too much for my dancing, so I didn't expect you to be so happy. I was emotional because I won but I wouldn't have cried if you hadn't screamed."
Sehun feels guilt deep down, but he can't bring himself to admit that once, very recently, he really didn't care too much for his dancing, but he'd come to accept it. Maybe one day, he'll tell him but the time for that isn't now. "I support you in everything you do," he says, and he gingerly rubs his foot against Jongin's ankle. "Isn't that what you do when you love somebody?"
wrote this for Kimmy's birthday <3 Happy birthday lovebug I hope you have a slam-bammin good one bc you are Perfect :*