Has it always been this empty? That's the first thing Dae thought of when he passed the balcony, Yeon has never been one to decorate his place all that much, in fact the niveis thought him to be someone minimalistic with how simple yet classy the interior design of the penthouse was. It looked the same since they left it like that. It's been a while since Yeon departed to NYC to embark on another chapter in his journey, one that made Dae beyond proud. But he couldn't deny the loneliness he felt either, he didn't have his partner in crime physically by his side anymore and he couldn't even call him without having to issue an appointment beforehand. At least that's what the receptionist told him anyway and he decided that he shouldn't bother a busy man like that over a chat. He can just visit him next time when he wants to, right? 

Well that didn't happen. A month ago, he went to the company Yeon relocated to, but was met with heavy traffic. And by heavy traffic, he meant the amount of people who actually wanted to be granted an audience with Yeonseok Lee too. Supposedly, Dae would've gotten access either way because of who he is but he didn't want to burden the valkyr with his troubles so he steered clear. He kept himself busy with new clients, he improved his tracking too, at some point, Dae grew tired of this. Even bounty hunting feels meaningless now, there was no excitement to it, his adrenaline couldn't even begin to cover 10% of what he feels. He didn't want to take his time away but yesterday he realized he had to see him. Even from afar is fine. 

Instead of taking any transport, he decided to fly because that was the easiest for him, not to mention it gives him time to collect his thoughts while he's up in the air. Dae did make note to stop after flying a few hundred miles to recuperate. It took him some time but it was definitely faster than driving there too. That was how he found himself leaning against Yeon's balcony while it was raining heavily, the thunder was mocking him for sure, but Dae couldn't give it any mind to even care. He's so tired both mentally and physically. The niveis was soaked from head to toe, he actually looked like how his cat, Cleo, would be when she just got splashed by water. The hoodie covering his hair barely left anything untouched, the city was bustling with the density as usual, and Dae scrolled his contacts, typing a message to Yeon, "Are you busy?"

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Yeon had to admit, it was hard for him to confess all of this to the other male, he hated being vulnerable and putting himself on the line was one of the things he had refused to do. But when it came to Dae, he was willing to bend just a little. God knows the other male had gotten under his skin and he’d be lying to himself if he said they could ever go back to how they were. “That’s the whole point” he teased softly and grinned “There’s no fighting my charm so why don’t you just surrender yourself to it” he commented with a somewhat hopeful tone, maybe he wanted Dae to give in to him.

Yeon continued to hold him tight, arms practically locked around him as he held back tears of his own “It can be anything…anything that you can hold on to…even if it feels small…or ridiculous..it’s enough” he felt this pressure on his chest, a feeling of dread deep inside him which he recognized as fear…fear that he would lose someone that was incredibly important to him “I know Dae…it must be so hard for you to relive your death, god knows the amount of times I have seen those headlights racing towards me…nowhere to go, nowhere to run” he squeezed him just a little tighter “But I’m here…do you feel my warmth?” perhaps it was bold to assume he could make any difference to how Dae felt but he had to do something.

The way Dae sobbed made his heart clench, a tear of his own rolling down his cheek as his fingers stroked gently through the other male’s pale locks, seeing that look in Dae’s eyes he felt like he was losing his breath for a moment as he stared back at him with soft, emotional expression “I heard Paris is really beautiful this time of year” he spoke softly as he nuzzled against Dae “There’s so much to do…so much beauty..so many foods we’ve never tried…we can swim in every ocean like you wanted to…” he closed his eyes “All you have to say is yes baby” he reached for his hand and held it gently.

He sniffled slightly and chuckled bitterly, it was hard to push Yeon away, that much he knows about, does that mean he would stop trying to say no? Not really, but he didn’t think he had the energy to keep saying no anymore and maybe… just maybe he wants to say save me. If the valkyr wanted to help, perhaps he can do it better than what he thought he’d be able to do. Shouldn’t he give him a chance? “It’s easier said than done, valky” he chastised, “I want to give in but how can I do that when I tell myself I shouldn’t, hm?” It didn’t feel as sad anymore because Yeon was trying to lighten the mood up but it wasn’t going to be that easy. Not yet, anyhow. “

What if I tell you I don’t have anything to hold onto? No… what if I don’t want to hold onto anything? What then?” To say Daehyun Stormwind was being stubborn would be an understatement, but that’s just the reality of things. When he said that, he was reminded that the blond was also someone who went through death, which was honestly not a good thing, especially considering how they died before their own time. “Yeah… I feel it… it’s nice…” he mumbled, for someone who detested any other form of heat, the warmth Yeon offered him was almost welcoming, like he was being ushered inside a sweet home. Something that only existed in his imagination far from all of this. Something impossible to feel in this life. 

He almost missed the nickname he uttered because if there was one thing he knew about Yeonseok Lee, it’s that he doesn’t use nicknames endearingly like that, he never did and even the niveis respected it by not saying any of them. “Swim in every ocean I want…?” he murmured silently and stared at his palm, wondering how easy it’d be to say his life should be cut because the time is there but what the valkyr said rang true in his ear. “180 days…” he exclaimed, and looked at him with the same broken look “6 months… one day to signify a year in my life… convince me then. If I’m not convinced… then promise me you’ll let me go. I need your word, Yeon. If I still don’t wish to stick around by the end of that, you have to let me go.” He held his hand firmly and mumbled, “I’m not going anywhere until you give me your word…” 

The valkyr pursed his lips as he stared back at the other male with a soft expression, he could tell how raw Dae was allowing himself to be with him and he didn’t want to invalidate that trust he placed “I know you tell yourself you don’t deserve things but the truth is, you don’t get to decide if you’re enough in another’s eyes, that’s for them to decide…” and it was evident that the valkyr was certain Dae belonged in his life, he’d known that for a longer time than he wanted to admit at this point.

He felt almost chilled by those words, the thought of not having anything to hold on to saddened Yeon, he wanted so badly to change it, to deny it, to prove it different but he knew he couldn’t do that, if that was how Dae felt he couldn’t tell him differently “I’d tell you that tomorrow might have a whole different world waiting for you” he spoke in a soft voice as he rubbed his hand gently against the niveis’ back “And I can promise you that you don’t have to be alone, not if you don’t want to be…” he closed his eyes and took a few deep breaths because it wasn’t easy to see someone he cared so deeply for, hurting the way he was.

He was waiting patiently for Dae to answer him but when he came out with his response, the blond stared at him with a bewildered and almost pained expression because he could see the pain in Dae’s eyes. His chest felt heavy at the very thought of what Dae was suggesting because 6 months felt like such a short time in the grand scheme of things “That’s…” he teared up without even realizing he was doing “A lot to ask of someone…” he murmured, Yeon was strong but was he strong enough to let him go like that? He didn’t know.

But when facing the other options on the table it felt like only thing he could do to move forward from this night. He allowed a few tears to roll down his cheeks as he processed the possibility of losing the person he realized was so important in every aspect of his life “Okay…if you haven’t changed your mind by then…I won’t stand in your way” he responded in a weak voice.

He hated being weak, in front of anyone, even in front of his own sister. He just couldn’t see himself in that kind of position but still, why couldn’t he hold in his tears when he’s sitting right before Yeon, someone who he regarded highly? Is he allowed to cry like this? Was it okay? The fact that the valkyr was trying to console him meant a lot and while it wasn’t nearly enough to make him forget what he had been thinking about, he could postpone it… to a much later date. He’s just letting Yeon make his argument, he thought, nothing more and nothing less. He’s his friend, someone he treasured very much, shouldn’t he do that much for him? 

“Tomorrow would be a whole new world waiting for me?” he sounded confused, much like a child still awaiting answers from adults around him, he lifted his head and stared at the male who looked like he was also about to break for him, which made the niveis upset because he wasn’t supposed to feel sad like him, Yeon wasn’t supposed to care for him this much. He was just another guy in his life, someone in his passing chapter. “I don’t want to be alone” he shook his head, he never wanted to be alone, but that’s the reality for him, who was going to stick by him when he’s like this? “I don’t have people waiting for me though so I have to make do with what I have” he chuckled bitterly. 

Dae knew he had to hear him say those words, he had to promise him that he’d stop and give up if things didn't work out even after 6 months. To the niveis, it felt short and long at the same time. “I know it’s a lot to ask someone… that’s why I’m asking you.” He noticed the tears rolling down on his cheeks which made his heart wrenched, he extended his hand instinctively without realizing and brushed the tears away “Don’t cry…” he mumbled softly. “Crying doesn’t look good on this handsome face,” he added. When he agreed, he nodded and had a small smile “Then we should make use of our 180 days wisely, don’t we? I don’t have anything planned out or thought out, if you want me to be honest. Since this is all on you, it’s your responsibility. I know it sounded heavy and if you think it’s heavy, then you should tell me now Yeon, I won’t expect anything.” He was nobody to expect anything. 

He thought he had been doing well at holding himself together, given the situation, he didn’t ever expect to be faced with a situation like this, it was almost unthinkable to him. When had his focus become so surrounded by one person, when did their happiness begin to equate to his own? He swallowed harshly and nodded to affirm his words “I managed to find a path even though I lost everything, there was a time when I thought there was no road forward…” of course it could never quite equate to the pain he was sure that Dae carried in his long life but he did understand the feeling of hopelessness because he’d been through it and somehow come out the other side.

“You won’t be” Yeon assured him in a whisper as he circled a soothing hand against his back, he knew he was all in from the moment Dae expressed that. He felt almost angry at himself for leaving when someone he cared for was hurting like this, if he stayed maybe he could have changed something? Perhaps it was naive of him to think so, but he couldn’t help the thoughts that came creeping in. Things were going to be complicated with his schedule, the choreography was complete and rehearsals were already well underway but now that he thought about it, it wasn’t necessary for him to be there.

It wouldn’t be an easy sacrifice for him but it was one he already knew he was going to make without even needing to sit and contemplate it. He wasn’t going to regret choosing Dae, he was sure of that much. He pressed his lips together when Dae said it was a lot to ask of him “I’m strong…but even I don’t know if I’m that strong” he murmured softly. He had been doing so well at holding back his tears until now but eventually, his eyes betrayed him. Feeling the comforting touch of the Niveis, he forced a smile which became a soft laugh when Dae said crying didn’t look good on him “Everything looks good on me, don’t be ridiculous” he jested.

He sucked in a deep breath in response to Dae’s next words and nodded his head “I won’t lie to you and say that this isn’t hard” he responded in a soft voice “But regardless…going with you is my choice” if 6 months was all he had then he was going to make the most of every single moment. “I’ll worry about the details tomorrow…tonight…I just want to get lost in you” he confessed as he pulled him in to kiss against his lips softly “Is that okay?” he murmured softly.

"That's you… it's different with me. Hell, nothing about us even suggests that we have the even road, Yeon…" and he did not mean that is any offensive way, but to the niveis, that's how it looks like. "I am struggling yes… but my struggles are due to the weight of my past and sins, which I can't even begin to describe how much pain it causes me up until today." To be someone who abetted in a crime of killing, even for the worst type of people, will always haunt you, and Dae knows that all too well. He's not cruel, he just wanted to survive. But it does make him feel better to have the valkyr comfort him like this, he needed this. No, he wanted this and he finally got it. 

He doesn't want Yeon to sacrifice anything more for him, much less his time. But unfortunately, there's this selfish desire in him that just wished he could have Yeon's undivided attention. Was that too much to ask for? He looked up slightly at the same time he managed to catch Yeon tearing up. For the likes of him. That made him upset because how dare he make him cry? Who was he to make this man shed such tears for? "Maybe so, but these tears should only be for tears of happiness or pleasure, Yeon, never for sadness purposes… it's wrong" he murmured. God, he never thought he mattered this much to him to make him cry just by the thought of losing him. He finally felt like he's someone important. Or maybe he's been waiting to matter to someone like this to someone that's not his sister. 

6 months might not seem long to others but to him and to Yeon? It would be a while. "Your schedule… you can't just cancel them." But the hollow eyes and tone indicates that he doesn't care. He wants him to spend that time with him. When he pulled him in for a kiss, he hitched his breath and nipped on Yeon's bottom lip gently, "Yes… do whatever you want, I'm here… I promised you 6 months, 6 months it is…" He returned the kiss with equal passion and even went to take his top off. "I'm so wet though…"

Yeon nodded his head slightly, Dae had been fighting for so long against himself and he was in admiration of him for being able to keep pushing forward, he knew too well how easy it was to allow yourself to be sucked into negativity and once you were pulled under it was difficult to pull yourself out again. “I get it…everyone is fighting a battle others know nothing about” and no one had the right to judge others for how they coped with such things. He could tell that Dae held a lot of blame within him, hatred directed towards himself and it was clear he didn’t know how to let it go.

All Yeon could do was support him and be a friendly ear for him to share his issues with, should he want to. The rest could only come with time and patience. Yeon could see such a sad look in Dae’s eyes as he stared back at him which almost halted his tears in their tracks, he didn’t want to cause him any more pain. “Maybe…but it’s natural to experience emotions…especially when it comes to those you cared about” seeing Dae hurting, hurt him too. “So give me just a few minutes to be sad” he murmured softly, after that he would pull himself together and keep himself in check, because god knows one of them needed to be strong.

The blond pressed his lips into a hard line when Dae said he couldn’t just cancel his schedule “I can…that’s the simple fact of it, for so much time I’ve thought like that…convinced myself I couldn’t let things go or everything would fall apart…but I should give more credit to the empire I’ve built” he nodded slightly, they could do it without him, he knew they couldn’t. The kisses they shared weren’t gentle, each had meaning as he pulled the niveis in as close as he physically could. “I don’t care…I’ve never cared less about getting soaked” he murmured as he ran his fingers against Dae’s chest before starting to unbutton his own shirt.

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