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Kicking off the pebbles on the pavement using his feet, Hanseol kept staring out in the distance with a rueful look. Sometimes he looked as if he was constipated or in pain, other times, he looked like he was blank. It was all the side effects of not being able to find the person he wished to find so bad. Ever since that day with Sunmin, he hasn’t been able to forget about the other Celestial that had a big possibility of being his brother, if not twin, considering where the mark was located at. A Gemini twin for a Celestial? Judging from the Gemini constellation alone, he wasn’t surprised that was possible because it’s a jointed constellation, to begin with too. If everyone else had siblings; namely the Braelynd siblings and Belangers… it shouldn’t be a surprising thing to find out that he had one too, right? Only it wasn’t normal to find a sibling after spending decades alone. And most siblings fell on the same day, making them the same age as one another.
There had been plenty of questions bombarding Hanseol’s head ever since that day. His days were quite dull and systematic so to say, he would often stay up late at nights to pinpoint the last location Sunmin may be seen at, or if he didn’t want to wallow in his sense of failure, he would stay back to work overtime while studying at the clinic. His evaluation tests would be taking place in a few weeks and he needed to ace them if he had any intentions of maintaining his position in the sector but with everything that was happening? It feels like that’s not going to happen soon. It wasn’t until two days ago that he was reminded to hit Ophelia up regarding their plans; ones that were made a while ago. He felt guilty that he had almost forgotten all about it amidst his busy schedule but made time to spend his day with her today.
It was why he was currently waiting for the Wayfinder at the mall, having promised that he would bring her to the bowling alley later in their conversation a few months ago. Well, he intends to keep his word. As always. While waiting for the raven-haired female to make her appearance, Han mulled over his decisions over the past few weeks, to which he found himself grimacing because he had also neglected his significant other a considerable amount. Again. Running his hands over his hair, Han groaned in response to the recap he just did in his head, surely this search for one person wouldn’t be bringing a detrimental side effect to his life right now. Is it? He hated that he’s always doing that, yet Jae never said much about it which made him even guiltier because that wasn’t supposed to happen. That wasn’t how things were supposed to go down, no.
Dressed in his windbreaker and jeans, he tucked his hands into his pockets and pressed his lips together while staring into the distance once again. At this point, the earthquake can erupt and still, he wouldn’t be bothered as much as someone should. Though he was still looking forward to spending time with Ophelia, he needed that time off too and after seeing his boyfriend sleeping soundly after a late night’s studying session, he didn’t want to interrupt whatever’s left of his blissful time in la-la land. Han made sure to sneak out without waking him up and had to bribe Byul and Yeontan so they wouldn’t bark as loud too. A part of him reminded himself to bring something back for the dhampir because bringing back gifts had been a norm for him, whether it be flowers or new journals for him to write into. Thankfully, it’s only been about 10 minutes since he sat on the bench in front of the bowling alley, waiting for Ophelia, it gave him a small duration to be thinking of what he’s been doing.
She nodded, her expression empathetic because she understood where the lack of trust stemmed from and could even echo it herself because she had spent just as much time not knowing how to handle her trust when it came to others “But you have and that says a lot about how far you’ve come” she praised with a nod of her head “Believe me I know how hard it is to trust people after you’ve had someone break it” you kept doubting people or expecting the worst at a drop of a hat and people could do nothing wrong and you would still feel this urge to cut and run at the smallest sign of things going wrong.
She nodded slightly, of course he was looking at it with rose-tinted glasses because he loved him but she could sense the sincerity in Han’s voice which told her that he really meant it when he said that he thought Jae was special “I guess he was the first person who offered you a safe place to land huh?” she smiled and nodded slightly “At least in a long time anyway” the adventure of a celestial was often a sad one but lately it seemed like they had the chance to take a breath of fresh air. “Then hold onto him really tight okay?” she spoke softly and nodded her head a few times, she wished she had held onto those she loved a little tighter too, maybe then things might have turned out differently somehow.
She laughed when he said she wasn’t supposed to say no “Well then it seems like you’ve won me over” she teased slightly before looking up to notice the waitress was coming back with their drinks, she spoke a soft thank you before reaching for the glass and sipping a little from the steam. She softened her expression when Han admitted he likely wouldn’t have reached out to Jae if it hadn’t been for the fall “Well then you better treasure the fact that he’s clumsy since it’s the reason you found him” she grinned playfully and reached to shake his shoulder when he panicked over the fact he was going to end up a hermit “I don’t think that’s the case...people seem to flock to you” she commented shaking her head slightly “You must be one of those people” she teased slightly. Just then their food was brought over and her eyes practically doubled in size as she looked back at the massive burger in front of her “Wow that’s...much bigger than I was expecting” she commented, staring at it as she tried to determine the best way to tackle it.
For someone who finds it hard to trust people because the environment he grew up in, Han sure was empathetic and kind to people. He was a shy boy, and everyone who may or may not know him would be able to sense that from a mile away. Sometimes his demeanor didn't suit his appearance but oftentimes, it does. "I want to keep growing into a better person" he exclaimed with a bright grin, indeed that's exactly what Han wanted. He didn't care about the past, only the present and the future he wanted to create. It is his life, he should be given the right to cultivate it however he wants it. "Did you experience it too?" He asked curiously, it does seem very unsurprising that Phe may have gone through a similar ordeal, after all, the world's cruelest to people like them. He didn't want to pry but at the same time he also wanted to know if Phe suffered a heartbreak just like that too.
He chewed his bottom lip apprehensively and giggled at the thought of that, was she wrong though? "I guess you could say that. I have never felt more sure than when I'm with him. I feel like everything matters and it's actually going according to what I have in mind" it's like the world finally worked in his favor for once. "He's everything to me…" he mumbled softly, there was a gentle smile etched on his lips and the slight dimple on his cheeks showed just how genuine he felt for the dhampir. It was strong and it was there. When Phe told him to hold onto him tightly, Han nodded and grinned, "I won't let him go. I don't think I can even if I want to, I just hoped that I'll be enough for him." To the celestial, Jae deserved the absolute best. "It's one of the traits that made me love him even more actually, where else could I find someone like that if not here?" Sometimes, the fallen star finds his carelessness to be quite endearing.
It brings a smile to his face and while the actions could hurt the other male, it was still so cute to see him pouting over those things. His ears did grew reddish when she mentioned people flocked to him, "Is that a good thing? I was worried I wouldn't be able to appease them, you know? I'm not… good at interacting with people. And it's not even because I don't want to" he muttered, he often gets flustered, especially after meeting new people who wanted to further their relationship. He didn't know how he would appear to others. "What kind of people do you mean?" A people magnet maybe? Is that even a real term? Upon gauging her reaction to the burger in front of her, he laughed and took her hands to place it properly on the burger, using a perfect ratio of holding them, slightly different compared to others, "Start eating from the side and instead of eating the corners first, just proceed to eat in the middle first so it wouldn't spill too much." He showed her the way he did it and took a big bite out of his own food.
She smiled, his enthusiasm was a little contagious she had to admit “That’s the spirit” she encouraged with a nudge against his shoulder, Han was what she would describe as a really sweet and thoughtful young man who was still looking for his place in the world and after getting to know him a little, she was sure he would get there. She nodded when he asked if people had broken her trust too “More times than I’d like to admit, I’d like to say I learned from the experience but I guess my heart gets the better of my head sometimes” she offered a small smile, well at least that meant she cared, right?
“I think it takes a lot of strength to give people a chance when you know the pain that comes from deception” it meant you trusted more wholly and deeply in the people you decided to let in and that kind of bond was important. She couldn’t help but grin as the way Han so openly confessed how important Jae was to him and the way he said it, with the expression he showed, told her just how deeply he meant those words “Of course you’ll be enough for him, he’s lucky to have you” she commented and nudged him, he didn’t need to doubt himself, he was a good person who deserved more than the world had offered him so far.
She laughed softly when he said that Jae’s clumsiness was one of the reasons he loved him “I’m sure it keeps things exciting” she commented and grinned slightly “People wouldn’t be unique if they didn’t have their little quirks” she nodded thoughtfully, remembering little things about people she knew in the past was what made them all stand out individually in her mind. “Well, I guess that entirely depends on whether you like the people” she commented and chuckled “But I think it’s a good thing, knowing that you won’t ever be left alone” it seemed like Han had made a few immortal friends too. “The kind people just can’t help but care about” she commented with a wry smile, she felt the same way too, he seemed like a younger brother she supposed.
She stared at the burger for a moment as he explained how to eat them before nodding, despite doing what he said though she still managed to somehow get ketchup on her chin during the first bite, she laughed and reached for a napkin to wipe it off as she chewed and swallowed it.
He pressed his lips to form a thin line before switching into a more reassuring look, it was hard for Han not to take Phe's hand into his to reassure her that things will go on to be fine, considering the fallen star is quite expressive and open with his gestures. But he still had to watch his boundaries with other people. "You can't blame your heart either" he mumbled softly, "sometimes the heart does what it wants and there was no way we could've done anything to prevent that." Han was the type to let his heart lead too, so he couldn't help but speak on it. "We're more alike than we thought, huh?" The more he spent time with the wayfinder, the more Han realized how similar they were. Before he came to Evermore, he lived his entire life in a cell, and he didn't even know what kind of future lies beyond it. He remembered having to keep running every few nights because people found out what he was and wanted him for themselves.
"It doesn't get easier for sure… but… some people are worth giving your trust to" though he may look welcoming, shy and warm, Han, like most people, still retained his flaws. And sometimes, it gets the best of him, Jae has witnessed a few occurrences too but thankfully, the dhampir accepted him. He could feel his cheeks warming up when Phe said Jae was lucky to have him, "It's usually the opposite'' he fiddled with his fingers absentmindedly and giggled softly to himself. It was nice to hear that. "I shouldn't dislike people, right? To be honest, my compass really got lost after being away from civilization for a while" it was sad but Han still couldn't help but think if it was a better alternative than having to move around in exhaustion like he used to. Maybe it wasn't something he could openly talk about, lest it brings back all the bad memories he had.
"I don't want to be left alone, it's… cold and dingy, I've been alone my entire life and I don't like the feeling of it. Now I have more people in my life and that's my biggest fear, to lose them." It includes his occupation and dream, he worked so hard to get to where he is today and if one day the picture cracks, he would be devastated beyond repair. "I'm glad I'm someone like that… you're a good person too Phe, you're… very charming." Charming was one way to put it. Everything about her was graceful yet strong. Since he was used to eating a lot of things in big portions, getting ketchup and sauce on him became relative but seeing it on Phe of all people, made him choke because he was snickering. Han was grappling for his drink as an attempt to wash it down, "That shouldn't look as funny as it was." But the grin on his face indicated it was worth a sight. Han looked very youthful when he laughs like that, it could easily make people think twice how old he truly was. "I was wondering if I could ask you to do something… not now of course, but… since we're chatting anyway…"
She pressed her lips together and looked up at him, offering a small smile when he saif she couldn’t blame her heart too much and that sometimes it wanted things he shouldn’t “It just doesn’t seem to have any sense of self-preservation” she joked with a soft voice and grinned when he said they were more alike than they realised “At least we’re compassionate?” she offered with a slight laugh, it kept them in touch with their humanity at least. She smiled and nodded “They are...though taking that risk can be scary, I know” you had to hand it over with the hopes the person you chose to entrust it to, would take your trust seriously and not hurt you in return.
She laughed at his modesty when he spoke about how he felt luckier to have Jae “And you thinking like this is exactly what makes you perfect for each other” they cherished one another in a way no one else would and that made what they had special. “Disliking people is only natural, I think it’s impossible to like every person you meet” some people just didn’t mesh well with others and others did things you couldn’t forgive. She would honestly call anyone who said they liked everyone, a liar. “But just make sure you’re not counting people out before they’ve had a chance, it’s easy to judge before you really know someone” she nodded slightly, it was a fine line to walk and honestly she didn’t feel confident navigating it herself.
She nodded solemnly, she understood feeling alone, she had been alone for the best part of 100 years after the celestials had been captured so she could understand how it felt to be isolated and feel like no one was on your side “Then don’t lose them, hold on to them with everything you have” she assured him with a nod of her head, she knew there had been times where she regretted not keeping someone closer. She laughed when he called her charming “Am I?” she mumbled wondering what made him think that “I’m just...hopelessly looking for the right thing to do” she murmured softly, she cared about others, perhaps that was her charm.
She laughed too when he couldn’t hold back his amusement because of the way she made a mess “These things are so impractical but oh my they’re amazing” she licked her lips to get the remnants of sauce off before she straightened up slightly and raised a curious brow “Sure...what do you need?” it wasn’t often that Han asked her for anything besides companionship so she knew it must be important to him.
He playfully hit his own chest as he beamed sheepishly towards the Wayfinder, "It never has. It never seems to follow what the head wants either. Sometimes I feel like it acts on its own like its got its own mind or something. Pretty sure there's a few studies on the heart because of that" he teased, there was only so much they could handle, after all. He nodded in agreement when she said they are compassionate, indeed that's the trait a lot of people seemed to miss in the midst of everything, it is so easy to forget you had them. "I heard there's a saying… high risk high return? I saw it plastered over a business consulting session… to be honest, I found it odd because I wasn't sure why you would risk big time when you have no idea if you'll have a similar outcome but I guess I understood it now."
And truthfully, to the fallen star, there's nothing he could think about when it comes to hindering his own life progress. He had this now, he couldn't risk it. He couldn't help but to giggle in response to her compliment, the celestial loves the dhampir deeply and there was nothing that could fool him otherwise. "It's easy to judge when you don't see what you want to see. Sometimes the truth is distorted because you just don't want to believe in it…" then is it really the truth because there's still biased perceptions to it? Even Han wasn't exempted from these thoughts. Hanseol doesn't see himself as someone too closed off, he's shy and introverted because that's just how he is, but he was also the type who wouldn't reject a friendship should you bring it to the table.
It wasn't as if Han really had anyone before this, even when he was living his captive life behind the steel bars in the Isle of Skye, he rarely speaks to the others within the same vicinity despite suffering the same fate. It wasn't the language barrier either since he would converse in English, but maybe keeping to yourself was the best choice he had at the time. "I want to hold them close, I'm just afraid I couldn't stop it if they managed to slip my grip. But there's nonpoint in dwelling over something that's out of your control, right?" It's not as if he could change the future. "You have this cute charm to you, a mature and sophisticated air but still enjoyable to be around. I don't know how to describe it to the dot but that's what I felt when I trained with you the first time… and now us casually hanging out. Your words contained sincerity that can't possibly be faked either…"
Han remembered it helped his progress, knowing she's not there to judge him but the opposite. He wasn't sure if he could ask her this favor but he really had to ask, for future's sake. Once he swallowed the part he was chewing earlier, Han cleared his throat slightly, "When I have found my brother… can you help him?" It seems that he was asking for more than just a typical help, the emotions in his eyes clearly spoke volumes, he was asking Phe to bear with him should things get complicated.
She laughed softly when he explained how his heart never seemed to follow where the head went “I don’t think our heart is able to be rational...it wants what it wants” even if it hurt them in the long run, even if there was no way to imagine something would turn out well, it still craved it. “If you figure out how to tell yours to stop butting into important decisions, let me know” she teased slightly, she had always been the type to let her feelings get the better of her. She nodded in understanding when he explained how he now understood the concept of high-risk and high-reward “In your case, it seems like it paid off” though she wasn’t sure she could say the same about her own experience.
She agreed with him, people definitely had their own picture in their heads of what they expected to see in others and when it didn’t live up to the same mark, they would be disappointed “Sometimes I find it better to expect the worst and be surprised when something better happens...but there’s no sane way to live like that...always waiting for the next disappointment” she shook her head slightly, no she needed to hope for better than that. “We can only do so much to hold onto others...but make sure you do everything you can to keep the good ones, they’re rare you know” she scrunched her nose slightly and smiled.
She giggled when he said she had a cute charm “I’ll take it” she responded and nodded her head as though to say she was thankful for the compliment “I just want the best for people...honestly...I try my best to be a good person...and leader...and friend” it wasn’t exactly easy for her to do so but she felt like she owed it to the world to put some good into it, hoping that maybe it would show her a little kindness back one day.
She looked back at him with a curious expression when he asked his favor but before long her gaze softened and a small smile appeared on her lips “When huh?” she grinned slightly because he seemed more confident than he was before that he would be able to find his brother. She nodded slightly “I’ll do everything I can for him” she promised him “That’s my role as the Wayfinder but more than that...as your friend” her people were important to her and each of them deserved to be protected.
Han pressed his lips to form a thin line before gradually pouting at her statement, “It’s so hard to control your heart, no wonder people talked about using your head and not your heart so many times…” But Han does believe there should be a few times when you need to use your heart instead. Empathy is not displayed as often these days and it’s scary to imagine a world without one. How would they manage to go about their lives if they’re as cold and as emotionless as the robots? Then AI may as well take over the entire world and get rid of beings that could feel emotions. “It paid off… but it wasn’t easy, still I do feel proud of myself because if I continued to keep myself down, then who knows what would’ve happened? I mean I kept a relatively low-profile life before but hunters still managed to track me down… I just need to get stronger, enough to protect myself and the people I care about.”
He shook his head in affirmation when he heard her say that, “That’s not a way to live your life… always waiting for disappointment to come knocking on your doorstep, isn’t that… unhealthy? I know we’re immortals but we are still susceptible to other things, we can still die… and in a life that is never guaranteed to live forever, dwelling on the negativity is just unbelievable.” Han has never been the most positive person, especially when he spent the last 87 years of his life being locked up in captivity. But he would like to think now that they’re free and had the chance to explore the world again, they should take it the best way they could. “You’re rare too” he giggled, Phe exuded that presence that he appreciated but he never really saw her as anything more than a leader. That changed after he formed a friendship with the brunette, she was no longer his Wayfinder but also his friend too.
“We all want the best and while it may not always work out, I hope we’ll get to get the decent half of the stick either way.” The fallen star would be grateful for just that too. As long as they can live the life they have now, for a bit longer. Han nodded confidently, “Yes, when… I’m sure I’ll find him. A brother’s will… a family’s will is stronger than we know, right? I’ll find him, I know I will.” One way or another, he would. “And maybe, once he’s more familiar with his light, we can all train together. I’d love to do that, but I’m sure he won’t immediately trust me.” Time passed by and before long, Han had already finished every bit of his food and was wiping his lips using the napkin provided, checking his phone casually as he left a cute text to Jae. “Arcade, done. Lunch, done. Dare I ask what else you would like to do?”
She bit her lip as she thought about it for a moment and then shrugged slightly “Then again, if our hearts didn’t advocate for the things that make us happy then we’d all be very serious and boring” she laughed softly just thinking about it, sure it could be irrational at times but it always reached for the thing which would bring her the most happiness and how could she be mad about that. She nodded slightly, she could completely understand why trust was so hard for him and respect him for choosing to be selective about who he gave it to “You will, in time, it’s not something that just happens overnight” he had been improving a lot but there was still a long way to go.
She nodded slightly, dwelling on negativity was a trap many immortals fell into because they were exposed to the bad parts of the world over a span of longer time than most, it was easy for them to see patterns forming, ones that could be frustrating and disheartening “We can only work with what we have and try to make a small difference with the time and pull we have” she nodded her head slightly. She did her best to try and be a good member of society and take care of the world they lived in and the people around them. She grinned shyly when he said she was rare too before smiling “As are you” she commented in return, he truly was remarkable and seeing how far he had come here in Evermore made her incredibly proud.
“All we can do is hope...keep hoping” she nodded slightly, there were things out of their control and to move forward they needed to accept there was no changing certain things and just reacting to them as best they could, for example there was never going to be a day they didn’t need to be concerned about hunters, but they could get stronger and wiser to stand a chance at fighting them off. “Well you know where I am when you do find him, we’ll figure it out” she assured him with a nod of her head, she was equally curious about this star that managed to avoid capture herself. “Just be patient with him, I’m sure you understand how it feels to think it’s you against the entire world” she soothed with a nod of her head before finishing off her burger and even licking her fingers clean because it was so good.
“Dare you ask?” she commented and nudged him as though to say ‘what’s that supposed to mean’ before shrugging her shoulders slightly “How about we take a walk and head back towards home, it’s starting to get late” and as much as she was enjoying herself, she was starting to get tired.