milena_1980: (jaejoong)
[personal profile] milena_1980
Title: Sleeping With Ghosts: Love
Author: Milena Pandora/[livejournal.com profile] milena_1980
Rating: PG
Pairing: JaeChun
Genre: AU
Warning: N/A
Summary: Love is stupid. Love is a myth.
A/N: This is a series of short scenes told from Jaejoong's point of view. Most of it takes place before and during Chapter 1.
A/N2: I'm posting this sort-of-fluffy thing as a gift to myself. When I posted the last oneshot, I promised myself I would have chapter 27 for February 27, my birthday. However, life keeps getting in the way and I've found only bits of inspiration here and there. I've been writing this silly piece to get me motivated. It feels unfinished, but I'm happy with it, for the most part.
A/N3: Someone left then deleted a comment in the last oneshot. I didn't get a chance to reply, but to that person: thank you very much for that comment. It made me really happy. I'm sorry for not replying sooner ♥



You don't believe in love. The mere idea makes you want to vomit. Whenever you head over to Jongwoon's house and he makes you watch those romantic movies he likes, you spend the entire time making snide comments and making fun of the main characters.

"You're such a child," Jongwoon will accuse you. You usually roll your eyes, quietly agree, and then go back to watching whatever sugary-sweet scene is playing out.

Love is stupid. Love is a myth. Love is an idea society and the media sell to humans because, otherwise, life would be boring at best and hell at worst. Love doesn't exist in your world.

"You're so cynical," the last guy you hooked up with told you. It was his idea to talk about love and relationships. From the very beginning, you told him what you wanted; talk about wanting to be in love and in a regular relationship was not it. You prefer not to believe in fairytales.

"Someday you will," he told you. You kissed him to make him shut up.

*****

"I don't even know why Mom chose to raise him," one of your sisters says one day. The three that still live at home—the unmarried ones—will sit in their shared room and talk for hours, about university or work or men, movies, anything that comes to mind. This day, you walk by their room and overhear them by chance.

"Because he's Dad's spawn, that's why," another replies. "And Mom thinks it's her responsibility, for some messed up reason."

The woman you call "Mother" isn't cruel, but neither is she kind. You remember, as a child, receiving about the same care your sisters did: you were fed, clothed; she even helped you with homework sometimes. However, she never praised you, never seemed happy to see you. Your father was slightly different, but ignored you most of the time (you suspect that he forced himself not to show you affection because of his shame, as if he had any). Feelings of sadness and worthlessness piled up as your every achievement was ignored, as fear of punishment (most times undeserved) took over you.

"He's such a nuisance," your sister says. "So much damn drama. Please, stop begging for attention and grow up," she adds derisively.

"Dad should have left him with his real mother," your other sister says. (You notice the third one says nothing, but you pretend you don't.)

You have known the truth for a few years now; they know you know. You also know that they wish your father had let you die all the times you have attempted suicide. They feel no sympathy, no compassion. No, there is no love in your life.

*****

"Here," a girl's voice breaks the comfortable silence out in a corner of the school yard. "I'm going out with someone else."

There is a long pause, and then…

"…What? Since when?"

"Two days ago."

"Why?" The poor idiot sounds so vulnerable in his surprise. Why? Because she's a bitch, that's why.

"I do like you," she says (her tone implies that she's doing him a favor by liking him; what the fuck?). "But you're too intense, and I don't want that right now. It's not like you're in love with me or anything." The silence stretches.

You finally become curious enough to peek from behind the wall you're leaning against. There they are, a couple. You think you've seen them around school. They're both attractive: she's a typical beauty, and so is he, actually. Her long dark hair and attractive figure match well with his wavy black hair and dark eyes set in a rather pretty face (for a guy). They're nothing special, though, not for you. They both should shut up and go die.

"You're not going to cry, right?" she sounds disgusted. The boy shakes his head and puts something in his pocket.

"Yeah. Goodbye." His body language and expression are nothing short of dignified. Once she walks away, however, it all dissolves. His shoulders slump, his brow furrows in pain. You think he will walk away, but he doesn't: he sits on one of the uncomfortable benches to mourn his ill-fated relationship.

You're moving before you realize you are.

"Girl trouble?" you ask. His dark eyes are filled with sorrow, with pain. The sight gives you goosebumps. As expected, he ignores you. For an instant, his reaction angers you. You pretend to take it in stride, however. "You'll get over it," you continue, nonchalantly sitting next to him.

When he looks up and your gazes lock, you feel something, a feeling other than pain or sadness, despair or rage; it isn't lust or elation, or anything at all, really. At least, nothing you can recognize.

It certainly isn't love.

*****

The first time you hear him singing, you wonder if you aren't hallucinating (it wouldn't be the first time). The day you met him, and the next two days, you followed him home. The (tiny) part of you that remains rational throughout every one of your episodes knew that it was crazy, but, still, you did it. You wanted to be near him, for him to pay attention to you. You acted like one of those crazy stalkers in the movies, but you didn't care.

On the third day, he spoke to you and let you into his world. Now, you are imbedded in his life and nothing (except maybe death) will pull you away.

So, you hear him singing one night. You're in the backseat of your old, beat up car, dozing. The radio is on. It's the third time you've dragged him over to the beach. He protested, just like the first and second times, but, somehow, you think he doesn't really mind. Even sleepily, he listens to you ramble, and takes the soda (after he told you that he doesn't drink alcohol—something about his mother being against it—you decided to stock up on his favorite drink) and snacks you offer him.

Tonight, you're exhausted. The past few days have been stressful at home, with your family watching your every move. Your parents dislike that you have replaced the lock in your bedroom door. They think you'll kill yourself the first chance you get. Idiots. Like you would kill yourself now.

"So you have a new guy?" Jongwoon asked you a couple of days ago. You haven't called him in over a week. Your interest in someone new was enough to placate him. "Share. What's he like?"

Beautiful, you thought then and you think now. A slow song is playing, some love song you don't really like. Less than a minute into it, you realize someone is singing along. Your most recent friend has a beautiful deep voice; he sings with as much feeling as he lives. As he embeds each note with perfect emotion, you feel your eyes sting. He sings in a low volume, but you hear him clearly.

Why don't you ever sing when I'm awake? The question bounces around in your head, but you don't dare ask it. What if he stops singing? What if he refuses to let you hear him again?

Beautiful, you think again. Yoochun is nothing less than beautiful.

*****

Some nights you pretend to fall asleep. Most times your mind is going a million miles a minute, you can't think straight and you can't force yourself to stop talking despite your best efforts. However, some nights, you manage to close your eyes and stay still. And, if you're lucky, you hear him sing.

"You know every song on the radio," Yoochun noticed one day. He sounded annoyed; you just grinned—it is true, after all. While you like most genres, Yoochun focuses on the soft, romantic songs, the sadder or more dramatic the better.

He always starts slowly, each note hesitant. His voice calms you; it makes you want to curl up around him and not let go. The first time you think that, your eyes fly open in surprise. You have never wanted to be around someone as much as you do Yoochun. It's stupid, and you try to ignore it, but you end up following him around like a dog. Ah, he's a good friend, that's all. (That you often find yourself staring at him for no reason, or wondering what he's doing when you're not together, or making plans in your head for the next time you see him… none of that means anything.)

So you close your eyes and listen, and pretend the world is his and yours alone. Now, wouldn't that be perfect?

*****

"Someone's got it bad," Jongwoon remarks one night. It's Wednesday (you think, but you aren't sure; maybe it's Thursday) and you've forced yourself not to follow him home. A few months have passed since that day you witnessed him being dumped mercilessly and he has, unsurprisingly, become the center of your world.

"Who's got it bad?" you reply (a bit defensively, you realize quickly enough).

Jongwoon rolls his eyes and sits next to you on the sofa.

"Come on, spill," he urges. "Who's the guy keeping you from hanging out with me? You've stopped hooking up, too."

"I hooked up with what's-his-name maybe a month ago," you counter.

"Exactly, a month." You hate him when he smirks. It makes you want to punch him. Asshole. "Who is he? Do I know him?"

"No." It takes you a moment to realize that he's grinning. Damn it. "He's just a friend. There's nothing special about him."

"What's he like?" Jongwoon asks again, his tone soft rather than demanding. Should you tell him? But then Yoochun won't be yours alone. That is absolutely unacceptable. Still…

"…His name is…"

Your friend (now relegated to second best friend thanks to Yoochun's existence) listens to you practically gush about your new best friend. You tell him about your nightly trips to the beach, about Yoochun's weird passion for dramas, and how he complains whenever you go get him at two or three in the morning, yet never really says no. Jongwoon nods here and there, occasionally asks a question, always giving you the attention you so badly need. When you're finally done, he gives you a somewhat sad smile.

"Like I said," he speaks. "Someone's got it bad."

*****

You hate Jongwoon for days and you refuse to accept his words as fact. Yoochun is your friend, of course you like him. If every morning you wake up thinking about him, and you go to sleep imagining your next meeting, it doesn't mean you have special feelings for him, does it?

Does it?

"Morning, Hyung," Yoochun greets you after the weekend's over.

Suddenly, you're breathless; it feels like being punched in the chest, this awful pain, this longing that takes over you the moment you glance at him. Oh, how you wish you could stay like this, the two of you alone, no one around; if only you could take his hand and lead him away, where the pain and hatred and resentment don't exist. Oh, if only you could.

"Hyung?" His dark (and still sleepy) gaze fills with worry. He's worried about me, you think stupidly. Why does it make you so happy? Why does he make you feel elated when he smiles, yet miserable when he's gone? Why does hearing his voice make your heart skip? Why does listening to him talk or sing make you feel less lonely? Why do you have to feel like this? Why, why, why?

You don't believe in love. It is stupid, a myth. Love doesn't exist in your life.

"We're going to be late," he says after an annoyed sigh. You follow him with your gaze as he walks past you, your heart beating a mile a minute. It hurts so much, but you can't stop it.

Do I even want to?

Love doesn't exist, you remind yourself. That it's walking away from you right now, then turns around and calls out to you ("Hyung! Do you want to be late?"), it means nothing.

"Fuck," you mutter, your eyes filling with tears. "Stop nagging so early in the morning," you complain, hurrying to match his pace.

*****

It's his birthday and you want to be the first person to congratulate him. You hold on to that thought as you drive over and wake him up. You're in the middle of one of your weird episodes, you're aware, yet you make no effort to stop yourself from saying or doing stupid stuff, such as driving like a madman or stripping down and jumping in the freezing water less than five minutes after you've parked. He follows (he always does), taking off his every piece of clothing despite the cold winds (you stare, transfixed by how his skin seems to glow under the night sky) and wading over to you.

A moment later, you're warm, a chest pressed to yours, lips soft against yours.



Oh.

You're kissing him. He's in your arms, practically frozen against you.

Fuck.

He's going to punch you out for it.

But you don't want to let go.

But he'll be angry.

What can you do now? What do you say?



…Fuck it.

"Happy birthday," you say happily. And you kiss him again.


<<Oneshot: Slowed Down

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