Orange Jackets

K-pop info and glossary
Who's who chart of idols
Chen didn't attend this particular ISAC, but I've added him in for fun.
Also, Tao was injured during the high jump.
This story is the third in a series.
I write about men having sex with other men.  You must be eighteen or older to read my fiction.  This site is for consenting, responsible adults only.

            His back to the wall, Chen couldn’t quite catch his breath.  His sunbae was so good-looking, and so close, looking like an erotic fantasy and smelling like sunshine and fresh air, that he felt like this had to be a dream.

            If it was a dream, it was about to be a wet dream.

            “We should get together sometime,” sunbae said.  He was toying with a black marker he’d picked up from the table, twisting it, stroking it with capable, experienced fingers.  Chen wanted to be that marker.  So difficult to concentrate when his cock was twitching like this.  “I’ll give you my number.”

            Get together sometime?  To talk?  For a date?  For sex?  Yes.  Yes, yes!  Now would be good, now would be great.  Or any time.  Whenever sunbae wanted.  Number, sunbae’s number, right, he - - oh, no.  In despair, on the verge of panic, Chen said, “I don’t have my phone.”  Cruelly intent on shaming him, his voice cracked.  He cleared his throat, blushing, and explained, “We weren’t supposed to bring them, we only have one with us, I don’t have it with me.”  Oh, hell, he sounded like a little kid.

            Sunbae just smiled like that was no problem at all.  “You have any paper?”

            Paper?  Even though he knew that he didn’t, he felt in his pockets, anyway.  There was something in his jacket pocket, a bracelet or something, but no paper.  Hunh, he must have picked up someone else’s jacket.  “No,” he confessed.

            “Here.”  Sunbae flicked back the collar of Chen’s jacket.  Right there, inside the collar, he wrote his number.  He was standing close, leaning closer, his muscular body like a wall of sexual heat.  His hair looked soft and his bare neck was gorgeous and when he licked his lips, Chen moaned.  Moaned right out loud like an animal in heat and almost died from shame, but sunbae just flashed him a smile, confident, unflappable, completely aware of how sexually devastated Chen was and not worried about it.  Hell, he probably had this effect on everyone he met; he had to be used to it by now.  Stepping back, he tossed his head lightly and tapped the end of the pen against Chen’s chest.  “Call me sometime.”

            Knotted up with lust and amazement and dazed, eager desire, Chen just sort of panted at him, then managed to say, “Okay, sunbaenim.”

            The pen tapped Chen again, lightly, and sunbae smiled.  “Call me hyung.”  And then he walked away, leaving Chen alone to lean against the wall some more and moan.

            Oh, shit.  Oh, shit.  Oh, fuck.  Closing his eyes, Kris felt in his pockets one more time.

            It wasn’t there.  He couldn’t deny it; he couldn’t pretend.  It wasn’t there.

            Suho was going to kill him.  Suho was going to murder him.  When and where the murder happened only depended on when and where Suho found out.  It might be there on the field, a shocking archery accident.  It might be in the kitchen with a knife.  It might be in the drawing-room with a candlestick.

            He had to find it.  He had to get it back before Suho found out.

            Had it fallen out of his pocket?  How?  Damn, he’d been all over this field; it could be anywhere.  He shouldn’t have brought it with him; he knew that, and he could lecture himself about that later, but it wouldn’t do any good now.  Now, he had to focus on finding it.  Retrace his steps?  When had he had it last?  He stared at the grass, trying to remember.  He’d been talking with Suho about Infinite’s sex note, and he’d been thinking about getting Suho alone later - - damn, it would be a miracle if that ever happened again, now - - and after Suho had walked away with Baekhyun, he’d taken it out of his pocket, just to hold onto it for a moment.  And then Henry had walked up, and he’d put it back in his pocket.

            His jacket pocket.

            Where the hell was his jacket?!

            Seated in the grass, leaning against Sehun, Chen smiled to himself, closing his eyes.

            Sunbae smiled at him, leaning closer, one hand on the wall just beside Chen’s shoulder.  He should have felt penned in - - and he did, actually.  But he liked it.  He was so turned on that he couldn’t stop smiling, and he had this restless, aching, happy-feverish feeling all over, and the way sunbae gazed so deeply, so brightly right into his eyes made him feel like the most interesting person in the world.

            “I think it’s great,” sunbae said to him.  “A lot of people are playing around with vampires and zombies, but it’s starting to feel like the same concept over and over again.  I love that you went in a different direction with it.  ‘Wolf’ had really unique color, and I love how R&B ‘Growl’ is.  It has great groove, great vibe.”  Baring his teeth, he growled a little, and then, while Chen’s hormones were staging an absolute riot, he laughed.  “You probably do it better than me.”

            That little snarl had been so sexy, Chen was hot with lust and ready to make very questionable life choices.  Throwing aside his reputation to become sunbae’s sex toy seemed like a terrific idea, for example.  The way sunbae was smiling at him, confident and encouraging, had him ready to strip down and offer sex on the spot, public area and open door and all.  A little thing like growling and embarrassing himself seemed simple, in comparison.  So he clenched his teeth together and growled.

            Sunbae burst into laughter, turning aside as if looking for someone to share the joke with and then turning back.  Okay, the laughter was embarrassing, but sunbae’s happiness had him smiling, and then sunbae cupped his cheek and said, “So cute!  Like a wolf pup!  You’re so cute!”

            He might have preferred “mature and sexy” to “cute,” but he loved the way sunbae was touching him.  And then, for an instant, sunbae’s touch drifted downward, the backs of sunbae’s fingers brushing the side of his neck in a light caress.  Sunbae shifted closer, and his mind knew that sunbae wasn’t actually about to kiss him, but his body was ready for it, hungry for it, and he might have been whimpering…

            “Did you pick up my jacket?”

            What was with everybody and jackets today?  “No,” Kai said.

            “Is there anything in your pockets?” Kris asked.

            “No.”  He felt in them, anyway.  Kris was staring at him intently.  “The answer’s still no, hyung.”

            Looking irritated, Kris crouched down in front of Chen and Sehun.  “Hey.  Hey.”  He nudged Chen awake.  “Did you see my jacket?”

            “No,” Sehun said.

            Chen looked to one side.  Frowned, looked around, and then started to freak out.  “Where’s my jacket?”  Staring around, getting up on his knees, he patted at the grass like it would suddenly part to reveal an orange jacket.  “Where?!”  He stared at Kris and grabbed at Kai’s pants leg.  “Is that my jacket?”

            “My jacket,” Kris said impatiently.  “I need to find it.”

            “What are you two talking about?” Sehun asked.  “Did you get sex notes, too?”

            “I just need to find my jacket,” Kris said.

            “It was right here!” Chen was exclaiming, up on his feet now.  “Who took it?  Who was here?”

            “I don’t know,” Kai said.  “Everyone’s around here somewhere.”

            “This is serious,” Chen said.  “Who was here from the orange team?”

            “I don’t know.  Luhan hyung and Xiumin hyung?” Kai guessed, trying to remember.  “Tao hyung was here, Suho hyung.  One of the Tasty hyungs, Henry hyung, Dongwoo hyung…”

            “Did you see anyone pick up a jacket?  See anyone put on a jacket?”

            “So many orange jackets,” Kris said, getting up and staring out across the field.

            Chen’s grip was tight on Kai’s forearm.  “Do you mean that Infinite sunbaes could have my jacket?”

            “What are you looking for?” Kai asked.  “I can help you find it.”

            “I left something in the pocket,” Kris said.  “It’s kind of expensive.”

            Chen gave Kris a confused, distracted look.  “A little metal thing?”

            “Yes!”  Kris’s hand clamped down on Chen’s shoulder, dragging him closer.  “You found it?”

            “It was in my jacket.”

            Kris stared at him as if deciding whether to let him live or not.  “The jacket you lost?”

            “It sounds like you lost it first,” Kai pointed out.

            “Find it,” Kris said.  “I need it, and I need it fast.”  He gave them a stern look.  “Suho doesn’t need to know about this.”

            Hey, now.  “I’ll help you with anything,” Kai said.  “You know I will.  But I’m not getting in trouble with Suho hyung for you.”

            “Then forget him and help me,” Chen said.  “You find my jacket, his jacket, it’s all the same.  There’s a phone number written inside the collar.”

            Really?  “Whose number?”

            Chen shook his head.  “Find it for me and I’ll tell you.”

            Xiumin frowned.  This jacket was way too big for him.  Eh, it had to be Kris’s, but he didn’t see Kris around anywhere.  “Hey,” he said, nudging Tao.  “Trade jackets with me.”

            Tao fiddled with the weird metal thing in his pocket.  What the hell was it?  Pulling it out, he stared at it.  It looked like a little bracelet.  It was a smooth gold ring with a perfect row of purple stones.  He didn’t recognize it, and he’d know if his members had something like this.  Why would it be in his pocket?  Why would someone have it around today, to run races?  Maybe it belonged to one of the girls.

            Looking around, he saw that the nearest person in orange was Sungjong.  They greeted each other, and he held out the band.

            Before he could say anything, Sungjong gasped and pushed his hand down.

            What a weird reaction.  “Do you know what this is?”

            “Yes,” Sungjong said, giving him a strange look.  “Do you?”

            “I mean, do you know who it belongs to?”

            Sungjong eyed him.  “You don’t?”

            How could he?  “Can you give it back to her?”

            Quickly, discreetly, Sungjong took the band from him, putting it in a pocket.  “I’ll take care of it.”

            While Sungjong walked away, Tao wondered who it belonged to and admired his ass.

            “Hey.”  Kris walked up behind Xiumin.  “Let me see your jacket.”

            “Hunh?”  As Kris peered inside his collar and felt inside his pockets, Xiumin didn’t know whether to fend Kris off or get turned on or what.  “What are you doing?”

            “You find anything in your pockets, earlier?”

            “No.”  He straightened his clothes and checked his hair.  “If you’re looking for your jacket, I gave it to Tao.”

            “What?  Tao?”  Quickly and easily, Kris scanned the crowd like the giant that he was.  “Where is he?”

            “I don’t know.  You can find him faster than I can.”

            “If you see him, tell him that I’m looking for him.”  Kris disappeared as suddenly as he’d come.

            “A what?” Woohyun asked.

            “You heard me,” Sungjong whispered.  “Take it, take it.”

            Quickly palming it, Woohyun slipped it into his pocket.  Fingering it, he frowned.  “Where the hell did you get it?”

            “Tao had it.”

            “Tao?!”  Woohyun didn’t want to admit it, but it felt a little bigger than he was used to.  More Sunggyu’s size than his own.  “This is EXO’s?”

            “He didn’t know where it came from.”

            It wasn’t spiked, but it was weighted, nice and solid.  It felt like there were gemstones around the band.  Slipping an edge out of his pocket, he peeked, then shoved it back into his pocket and stared at Sungjong.  “Are those amethysts?”

            “They can’t be real,” Sungjong said dismissively.

            Woohyun wasn’t so sure.  “Don’t tell anybody about this.”

            “Don’t get caught with it,” Sungjong warned.

            “Where have you been?” Kris demanded, snatching at Tao’s jacket.

            “Ya!”  Tao stared at Kris in righteous indignation as his jacket was dragged off of him.  “That’s mine!”

            Kris yanked the pockets inside-out and stared inside the jacket, then shoved it back at him.  “Was there anything in the pockets?”

            “Did you lose a sex note?” Tao asked, laughing.

            Cursing under his breath, Kris rubbed his forehead.

            “There was a bracelet,” Tao remembered.  “Or a ring, or something.  Some girl’s jewelry.  Sungjong sunbaenim said he knew who it belonged to.”

            Kris stared at him as if he’d just done something incredibly stupid and very dangerous.  “What?”

            Now that the wind had died down, Baekhyun was growing warm again.  While Xiumin and Luhan sat down to talk with Dongwoo, he slipped off his jacket.

            Hunh, there was something written inside the shoulder.  “What is this?” he asked, sitting down with them.  “Do you know this number?”

            Dongwoo read it, then shook his head.  “No.”

            “Who wrote a telephone number inside his jacket?” Xiumin asked.

            “Is it like writing your name inside your jacket?” Dongwoo asked.  “In case it gets lost, someone can call you to give it back.”

            “Then why not just write your name?” Baekhyun asked.

            “Let’s call it,” Luhan suggested.

            “Should we?” Dongwoo asked doubtfully.

            “They wrote it down, didn’t they?  They want whoever finds the jacket to call it,” Luhan reasoned.

            “It can’t hurt,” Baekhyun said.  “It’s just going to be someone on our team.  One of the girls or the twins or somebody.”

            “Do you have a phone?” Dongwoo asked.

            “No,” Luhan admitted.  “Let’s go find one!”

            Xiumin laughed.  “We haven’t spent enough time today running around?”

            “Don’t you want to know who did this?” Baekhyun asked.  “It’s weird, isn’t it?  Writing your number inside your jacket?  I want to know why they did it.  If we call, they’ll tell us.  And we can give their jacket back.”

            “Maybe it’s not their own number,” Dongwoo said.  “Maybe it’s someone else’s number.”

            “Yeah, we used to write our numbers on each other’s arms,” Xiumin said.  “This is sort of the same thing, I guess.”

            “I would just put it in my phone,” Dongwoo said.  “But if you don’t have your phone with you…”

            Oh!  “Is this the number of whoever’s passing out love notes?” Baekhyun asked.  “Write your number on the jacket, slip a note in the pocket?”

            Luhan grinned, hopping up.  “Let’s find a phone!”

            Woohyun didn’t really want to involve EXO in this, but he was too eager to talk to Dongwoo to wait any longer.  Finding Dongwoo strolling across the field with three EXO members, he interrupted.  He tried to be subtle about pulling Dongwoo aside, but subtlety was lost on Dongwoo, so after a moment he let a hint of the ring glint from his pocket.  “Do those look real to you?”  No one in Infinite was an expert, but he figured that if anyone would know, Dongwoo might.

            “It looks like it,” Dongwoo said.  “What is that?  Where’d you get it?”

            “You’re carrying around amethysts in your pocket?” Luhan asked, and laughed.  “Infinite’s doing well!”

            “Not that well,” Dongwoo said, laughing.  “What is it?”

            “Just a bracelet,” Woohyun lied, smiling.  “We’re trying to find out who it belongs to.”

            “A present to go with the note?” Baekhyun asked, looking interested.

            Xiumin shook his head.  “The only person out here I know with real gemstones is Suho.  Unless it’s a fan gift.”

            Suho?  Now there was an interesting image.  But if Suho not only had something like this but liked it enough to carry it around to events, Tao would at least recognize it, right?

            L.Joe looked up and smiled as Dongwoo, Xiumin, Luhan, and Baekhyun squatted around him.  “Hi,” he said, looking from one face to another, wondering what they wanted.

            “Sunbaenim,” the EXO members said politely.

            “Hi,” Dongwoo said.  “Can we borrow your phone?”

            A phone was ringing.

            Disoriented, Hoya looked around.  “Do you hear that?”

            Frowning, Feeldog patted his clothing.  “I think it’s coming from my pocket.”  Looking mystified, he pulled out a phone.

            “Answer it,” Hoya urged.

            Feeldog laughed, holding it like it was some alien object.  “It’s not my phone!”

            Hoya took it from him.  “Hello?”

            “Who is this?” a familiar voice asked.

            Suspicious, he narrowed his eyes.  “Who is this?”

            “Ya!”  Familiar laughter.  “Is this Lee Howon?”

            “Is this Jang Dongwoo?”

            “This isn’t your number!”

            He checked the caller ID.  “That’s not your number, either!”

            “Whose phone is that?”

            “I don’t know.  Why are you calling it?”

            “Come here.”

            He looked up to see Dongwoo standing up and waving at him.  “You come over here.”

            He saw Baekhyun take the phone from Dongwoo’s hand and heard, “Who’s the hyung in this relationship?”

            He chuckled.  “Who’s the hoobae in this relationship?”

            “Ah, Hoya sunbaenim,” Baekhyun said with sudden humility while Dongwoo cracked up.  “We’re on our way.”

            Laughing, he hung up.

            Kris had conferred with Suho over how to handle the sex note, but he was on his own, this time.

            Sitting with Henry, Daeryoung, and Soryoung, he tried to seem attentive while he planned out what to do.

            He could forget the whole thing.  That would protect his reputation and save him from running from idol to idol, embarrassing himself.  Eventually, Suho would ask about the ring, though.  If he admitted what happened…ugh.  But he didn’t want to lie to Suho.  And even if he did want to lie, it would never work; one of the other members would ask if he’d found what he was looking for, and Suho would ask what they were talking about, and…ugh.

            On the other hand, if he did try to get it back, then what?  He’d have to walk up to Sungjong and ask for it.  According to Tao, Sungjong had recognized it.  He couldn’t imagine that Sungjong actually knew whose it was, but that had to mean that Sungjong knew what it was; Tao obviously didn’t.  If Sungjong knew what it was, and Kris asked for it back, Sungjong would know more about Kris’ private life than Kris was really comfortable with.

            But it went a little deeper than that.

            Everybody knew that trainees and rookies were broke.  Even the ones who came from middle-class families weren’t throwing their money around.  If Kris was lucky, Sungjong would think that anything so lavish came from a fan.  But Sungjong might think that if anyone in EXO had something so nice, it had to come from Suho.

            Chances were, having found Tao with it, Sungjong assumed that it was Suho’s, period.

            If Kris said, “It’s mine,” Sungjong would either assume that Kris was lying to cover for Suho, or would assume that Suho had bought it and given it to Kris as a gift.

            Kris was only worried about outing himself to an extent.  The fact that a lot of idols had sex with their members was a pretty open secret.  He’d be more surprised to learn that Sungjong wasn’t involved with other members of Infinite than to learn that Sungjong was.

            But he wasn’t going to out Suho.  He couldn’t.  “A lot of members screw each other, those guys in EXO are probably doing it” was not the same as, “Suho and Kris are lovers, you should see what Suho gave him.”  He didn’t know Infinite well enough to trust them with Suho’s privacy, and he couldn’t take the risk.

            If he couldn’t out Suho, he couldn’t talk to Sungjong.

            He couldn’t get it back.

            Fuck.  Fuck, fuck.  How could he have been so stupid?  If any of the other members had pulled a stunt like this, he would’ve given them hell for it.  Suho trusted him, trusted him so much, trusted him with everything, everything that mattered to Suho, everything that was important, and he’d completely screwed up.  What was he going to say?  How was he going to explain this?  He could hear it now - - “You trusted me with your love and your body and half of your beloved members, and I just compromised your reputation and jeopardized our careers for no goddamned reason” - - and he could imagine Suho’s reaction.  Could see the hurt and disappointment on Suho’s face.  Could see confusion turn to understanding as Suho realized the consequences of this betrayal.

            It would be over between them.  It would be over, and it would be his fault.  It was especially fucked up because Suho had been so reluctant to start anything with him; Suho had worried about the members, about how things would work long-term, about what a rift between the two of them would mean for the team as a whole.  He’d been so sure, so confident, so goddamned breezy, waving away Suho’s objections, sure that what his cock wanted - - what his heart wanted - - had to be right.  He’d gotten his libido and his emotions all tangled up, and he’d decided that he had to have Suho, that it had to be right, and he’d justified it every way he could, and he’d deliberately set out to seduce Suho, and it had worked.  He’d convinced Suho that sex between them was a good idea, that a relationship would go well, that their bond would only strengthen the team, that he could be trusted.

            And now their relationship and his reputation and Suho’s future - - EXO’s future - - was in the hands of some sunbae Kris didn’t even know.

            Fuck this.

            “You okay?” Henry asked, putting a hand on his thigh.

            “Yeah,” he said, getting up.  “I’ll be going first.  I have to check on a thing.”

            “Whose phone is this?” Baekhyun asked.  Taking the phone from Hoya, he braced his other hand on Hoya’s thigh as he sat on the grass.

            “Can you tell by the other numbers?” L.Joe asked.  “Who’s in the contact list?”

            “You can’t just go through someone else’s phone,” Dongwoo protested.

            “Sure you can,” Hoya said.  Baekhyun’s hand was still on his thigh.

            “Where’d you get it?” Xiumin asked.

            “It was in my pocket,” Feeldog said, studying the phone number written inside the orange jacket.

            “More jacket switching,” Luhan and Xiumin told each other, nodding.

            “I guess,” Feeldog said, laughing, taken aback.

            “Who else is wearing yellow?” Baekhyun asked.  Casually, Hoya pretended to glance around the field, shifting his position just enough to nudge his bare arm against Baekhyun’s.  Baekhyun didn’t move away.

            “A bunch of people,” Feeldog said.

            “NU’EST,” L.Joe said.

            “Wait.”  Dongwoo took the phone from Baekhyun’s hand.  “This is private.  Whoever this belongs to might have things on here we shouldn’t see.”

            “Who keeps porn on their phone?” Hoya asked.  Baekhyun gave him a scandalized but approving look and he grinned in return.

            “Not that!”  Dongwoo teasingly slapped Hoya’s arm.  “Let’s just find out who lost a phone and return it.”

            “We’re not really going to walk around greeting every idol we see, asking who lost a phone, are we?” L.Joe asked.  “Wouldn’t it be faster just to check the phone?”

            “We don’t have to dig through old text messages or anything,” Baekhyun said.  He lifted his hand, scratched his own knee, and put his hand back on Hoya’s thigh, higher this time.  Bold.  Hoya liked it.  “Just check the contacts.  Or the recent calls.”

            “Whoever lost it must be looking for it,” Dongwoo reasoned.  “We’ll take it to the lost and found.  If someone on your team asks you, tell them that’s where it is,” he told Feeldog, getting up.

            “There is no lost and found,” Hoya said.

            “Wait,” Baekhyun said hastily.  Dongwoo paused, looking down at him with interest.  “Before you took it from me, I saw two contacts.  One was ‘Woo’ and one was ‘Gyu.’  Maybe it belongs to one of your members.”

            Hoya laughed.  “You’re so full of shit.”

            While Baekhyun burst into laughter, Dongwoo asked, “Woo and Gyu?  That could be anybody.”

            “Sunggyu, Dongwoo, Woohyun,” Luhan said.  “Are you sure that’s not, like, L sunbaenim’s phone?”

            “It doesn’t belong to anybody in Infinite,” Hoya said.  For the hell of it, he rotated his shoulder so that his arm rubbed against Baekhyun’s, enjoying the smooth slide of skin against skin.  Baekhyun glanced down at their arms, then shot him an appreciative smile.  He flexed and Baekhyun laughed.

            “I know a hundred people named some sort of Gyu or Woo,” Dongwoo said.  “I’m taking it to the lost and found.”

            “Hyung!  There is no lost and found!” Hoya said.

            “Then I’ll make one!” Dongwoo said, walking away, laughing.

            “Did you really see Gyu and Woo?” L.Joe asked Baekhyun.

            “I did.  They were right near the top of the most recent calls.  Who calls your members?” Baekhyun asked Hoya.

            “Anybody,” Hoya said.  “Nobody.  Nobody in NU’EST.”  He smirked at Baekhyun.  “You can call any time you want.”

            “So greasy,” Feeldog moaned, laughing.

            “Is this whole thing related?” Xiumin asked.  “The sex note in one pocket, the phone in another?”

            “The phone number was written in an orange jacket,” Hoya said.  “The sex note was in an orange jacket.  The phone has recent calls to Gyu and Woo.”  He looked at the jacket thoughtfully, nodding.  “This all means something.  If we knew somebody smart, we could figure out what.”

            Everyone burst into laughter.

            As soon as he could, Kris pulled Xiumin aside, away from the crowd.  “How well do you know Kim Sunggyu sunbaenim?”

            “I don’t.”  Xiumin’s expression was curious and open.  “Why?”

            “You know Jang Dongwoo sunbaenim, don’t you?”

            Xiumin laughed.  “Yeah, but I don’t know Sunggyu sunbaenim.”

            Disgruntled, Kris scratched the back of his head.  “Do you know what he’s like?  How is he, as a leader?”

            “I don’t know.”  Looking thoughtful, Xiumin blotted sweat from his brow.  “Dongwoo’s really loyal to him, so he must be a good guy.  It seems like he’s strict.  Their company doesn’t have as many people as ours, so it seems like he has to take more responsibility.  Why?”

            It wasn’t the glowing recommendation he needed, but nothing would have really satisfied him.

            “What’s going on?” Xiumin asked, starting to look concerned.

            He couldn’t let any more of the members get involved.  He’d screwed up enough already without dragging more people into it.  “Nothing.”

            “Is this about that note?”

            He wished.  It seemed like an eon ago that note had been the most interesting thing to happen all day.  He felt sort of nostalgic about it, now.  “No, it’s nothing.”

            Luhan had a pretty good idea of where Dongwoo might have gone to ask about the “lost and found.”  As soon as he left Hoya, he headed there himself.

            A yard or so ahead, he noticed someone in bright pink clothes and bright pink hair walking in the same direction with a pink-clad companion.

            Smiling to himself, he slowed down a little.  He hung back, waiting.

            L.Joe and the other - - it looked like Changjo - - walked up to the administration building.  Changjo hesitated; L.Joe shooed him in, then waited for him.  Luhan had to admit, L.Joe was smart to send in someone else, in case Dongwoo had mentioned L.Joe’s involvement while handing over the phone.  Luhan himself should have been more careful.

            Momentarily, Changjo came out, hands in pockets.  Smiling, putting an arm around him, L.Joe walked him away from the building.

            Luhan waited until they were on the grass, then caught up with them, arm around L.Joe’s waist.  “Sunbaenim.”

            Startled, L.Joe laughed.  “Ah, Luhan.”

            “Give it to me.”

            L.Joe’s face displayed perfect innocence.  “Give you what?”

            “The phone.”

            Laughing, L.Joe looked around, starting to veer to one side, steering Changjo along.  “Let’s not do it in front of everybody.  I don’t want Dongwoo hyung to catch us.”

            The three of them found a semi-isolated corner.  While L.Joe scrolled quickly through the phone’s recent calls, Changjo leaned against him, reading over his shoulder.

            “Mmm.”  L.Joe bit his lower lip.

            “Skip the ones with full names and ‘nim,’” Changjo advised.  “There’s lots of Gyu and lots of Woo.”

            “Should we call one?” L.Joe asked.

            “Who else is there?” Luhan asked.

            “Go back,” Changjo said.  “Go up.  Does that say ‘MBLAQ?’”

            “Oh, wow,” L.Joe said.  “‘MBLAQ Seungho hyung.’  Yang Seungho sunbaenim!”

            “Really?”  Luhan scooted closer in on L.Joe’s other side.

            “Who’s friends with Infinite and MBLAQ sunbaenims?” L.Joe asked.

            “Who leaves his phone number on someone else’s jacket?” Changjo asked.

            “Let’s call,” Luhan suggested.  “We’ll call Seungho sunbaenim.  Maybe he’ll give it away when he answers.  ‘Ah, so-and-so, good to hear from you.’”

            “You do it,” L.Joe said, thrusting the phone at him.

            Suddenly on the spot, Luhan wasn’t as confident.  But he didn’t want to refuse in front of sunbaes who also happened to be kids, so he said, “Okay,” and took the phone.

            “He can’t!” Changjo said.  “Your accent.  Hyung, you do it.”

            “Oh, yeah.”  L.Joe took the phone back, hesitated, then laughed and shoved it at Changjo while Luhan tried not to look relieved.  “Do it.”

            “No!  What would I say?”  Changjo leaned away, refusing the phone.  “Hyung, you call.”

            L.Joe looked at the phone, looked at Changjo, looked at the phone, and dialed.  They leaned in on either side of him, Luhan holding his breath as someone picked up.


            “Ah, hyung,” L.Joe said.

            “Who is this?”

            L.Joe licked his lips.  “Hyung, you don’t know me?”

            A different voice was suddenly speaking.  “Ya!  This is Kang Insoo!  That’s my phone!  Who is this?”

            “Kang Insoo?” Luhan asked, startled.  “Myname sunbaenim?”

            “Who is this?” Seungho demanded.

            “Nobody,” Luhan said, grabbing the phone and ending the call.

            “Kang Insoo?” Changjo asked.

            “Lee Gunwoo!” L.Joe exclaimed.  “Kang Junkyu!  Woo and Gyu!  His members!”

            “What do we do with the phone?” Luhan asked.

            “Why is Myname’s Insoo writing his phone number on people’s jackets?” Changjo asked.

            “We’ll put the phone back in the lost and found,” L.Joe said quickly.

            “You turn it in,” Luhan told Changjo, pushing it on him.  “Tell them you made a mistake and it’s not yours.”

            “You turn it in,” L.Joe argued.  “I don’t want Changjo in trouble for this.”

            “No one’s going to get in trouble!”

            “Then you turn it in!”

            Shit.  There was only so far he could resist with a sunbae.  “It’s not like we stole it,” Luhan pointed out, reluctantly taking the phone.  “We found a phone, we called to see if we could find the owner.”

            “And when the owner answered, we hung up and freaked out,” Changjo said.  “Let’s just find Kang Insoo and give him the phone.”

            “I want to know whose jacket he wrote in,” L.Joe said.

            Luhan wanted to know, too, but he also didn’t want to be known as a phone thief.  “Unless it was Henry sunbaenim or the Tasty hyungs, it was one of my members or one of the Infinite sunbaenims.  I haven’t seen Insoo sunbaenim near any of the members all day, so it must be the Infinite sunbaenims.”

            “But not Dongwoo hyung or Hoya hyung,” L.Joe said.

            “That leaves five,” Changjo said.  “Sunggyu hyung, Woohyun hyung, Sungyeol hyung, L hyung, or Sungjong hyung.”

            Luhan raised his eyebrows.  “‘Sungjong hyung?’  How young are you?”

            “He’s a baby,” L.Joe said, brushing his knuckles up the side of Changjo’s neck with a fond expression.

            Blushing, Changjo smiled at L.Joe with so much affection and embarrassment and desire that Luhan suddenly had a lot more interest in how things stood between Teen Top members.  “Hyung, don’t tell people that.”  To Luhan, he explained, “I’m in the ’95 line.”

            And he was a sunbae?  “You are a baby.”

            “Do you know Kang Insoo?” L.Joe asked.

            “No,” Luhan admitted.  “I think we’ve greeted, but I don’t really know him.”

            “Ah, you’ve been in China and they’ve been in Japan,” L.Joe said.  “I don’t know him well, either.”

            “I’ve seen him on TV.  He seems really nice,” Changjo said.  Then he smiled.  “To people who haven’t stolen his phone.”

            Raising his eyebrows, Suho bowed as Seungho and Insoo approached.

            “Hey.”  Seungho adjusted his cap.  “You know Kang Insoo?”

            “Sunbaenim,” Suho said, bowing.

            Insoo smiled.  “I think that some of your members have my phone.”

            Suho had no idea what he was talking about, and let it show.  “My members?”

            “I lost my phone, earlier,” Insoo said.

            “He was standing beside me when all of a sudden his phone called me,” Seungho said.  “Whoever was calling hung up, but it was a couple of guys.  One of them had a Chinese accent.”

            An accent.  Suho’s first response was resentment that anyone would try to accuse his members of - - of what, of stealing a phone?!  “Our members are good kids.”

            “I don’t think they meant anything by it,” Insoo said.

            “Maybe you could ask around,” Seungho suggested.  “Ask if anyone’s seen it.”

            Suho nodded.  He wanted to insist that EXO had nothing to do with it - - there were other people with accents around, and Seungho might have heard wrong, anyway - - but what could he say to two older sunbaes?  “I’ll ask.”

            “Thanks,” Insoo said.  He didn’t seem angry, and he had a gorgeous smile, so Suho smiled back.

            Moments later, crossing the field, Suho bumped into Chen.

            “Who were you talking to?” Chen asked.

            “Hmm?”  Distracted, he put a hand on Chen’s shoulder and rose onto his toes, trying to see past umbrellas.  “Have you seen Tao?”

            “Was that Myname’s Insoo?”

            “What?  Yeah.  He lost his phone.  You haven’t seen Tao?”

            “He lost his phone?”

            “Chen!”  Suho laughed, shaking him a little.  “Do you know where Huang Zitao is?”

            For an instant, he could swear that Chen’s mouth began to form the question, “Who?”  Then Chen seemed to realize what he was asking.  “Oh!  Tao?  He’s with Kai.  Somewhere.”  Chen licked his lips.  “Have you seen my jacket?”

            “No, I’m sorry, I still haven’t seen it.  I’ll let you know if I do.”

            Chen’s smile didn’t quite meet his eyes.

            Sunggyu was seated under his umbrella, mentally napping, when he saw someone approaching.  Focusing his gaze, he looked up and then up some more to see EXO’s Kris looming over him.

            “Sunbaenim.”  Kris flashed a quick smile.

            Sunggyu nodded in acknowledgement.

            “Mind if I sit?”

            If this was about that note, Sunggyu minded.  But he gestured to the grass beside himself anyway.

            Sitting, Kris stretched out his legs for a mile or so, cleared his throat, and looked around.  “Sorry to bother you about this.”

            Inwardly sighing, Sunggyu rubbed his mouth and watched people stroll by out of earshot.  “About what?”

            “I lost something private.  One of your members found it.”  He leaned back on his hands.  “I was hoping that I could get it back without too much trouble.”

            Something private?  Interested, Sunggyu glanced over at him.  “What is it?”

            “Something private,” Kris said again.  He wouldn’t meet Sunggyu’s gaze.  “Jewelry.”

            Sunggyu nodded.  “I’ll ask the kids.”

            Kris nodded and, for a brief flash, met his eyes.  “Thanks.”

            Watching Kris go, Sunggyu sighed, dropping onto his back and closing his eyes against the sun.  This was not turning out to be the quiet, boring day he’d been told that it would be.

            Kai was practicing choreography with Tao and Luhan when Suho and Chen walked up.

            “Have any of you seen a phone?” Suho asked.

            “Have you seen my jacket?” Chen asked.

            “Whose phone?” Kai asked.

            “You said that we couldn’t bring our phones,” Tao said.

            “You’re wearing a jacket,” Luhan said, plucking at Chen’s clothes.

            “Kang Insoo sunbaenim can’t find his phone,” Suho said.  “Have any of you seen it?”

            “My other jacket,” Chen said.  “I lost it, earlier.”

            Kai shook his head.  “No phones.”

            “What, one of these orange jackets?” Luhan asked, fingers twitching Chen’s jacket.  “Why do you care?”  He laughed.  “Was there a sexy love note in the pocket?”

            “Not that!” Chen said.  He blushed.  “There was something written on the collar.”

            Luhan’s jaw dropped.  “That’s your jacket?!”

            “What?”  Chen stepped forward like he wanted to grab Luhan.  “You found my jacket?”

            “Why do you have Kang Insoo sunbaenim’s phone number on your jacket?”

            “Where is it?” Chen demanded.  “Do you have it?”

            “Whose phone number?” Tao asked.  “What?”

            “How did you know whose number?” Chen asked.

            “I thought that we weren’t allowed to date,” Luhan said.

            “Do you take me so lightly?” Suho asked.  “Am I your leader or a fool?”  Reaching into Chen’s pocket, he withdrew a phone.  While Chen jerked away in astonishment, Suho held the phone toward Luhan.  “Where did you get this?”

            “What?”  Luhan blinked at Suho, looking as innocent and pretty as a flower.

            “Tell me what happened,” Suho said firmly, staring right into his eyes, completely unaffected.  Kai exchanged glances with Tao, wondering if this would be a good moment to leave or not.  “Why do you have Kang Insoo sunbaenim’s phone?”

            Looking irritated, Luhan ruffled his hair and pursed his lips.  “We didn’t know whose phone it was.  Dongwoo sunbaenim wanted to put it in the lost and found, but how much sense does that make when we could just look at some recent calls and figure it out?”

            Suho’s eyebrows rose slowly.  His expression said that he would wait patiently for Luhan to finish speaking before he dropped the axe.

            “We called Yang Seungho sunbaenim and found out that it was Insoo sunbaenim’s phone.  I was on my way to find him.”  Luhan laughed.  “Do you know how hard it is to find people out here?  Everyone’s so spread out, hiding under umbrellas.”

            Suho wasn’t laughing along.  “You’ll apologize to Chen and to Insoo sunbaenim,” he said.  “You’ll apologize to me and the rest of the members at the dorm, and we’ll talk about it more there.”

            Kai could see the resentment on Luhan’s face, but he nodded and said, “Okay.”  Then he smiled at Chen, lightly squeezing the side of Chen’s neck.  “I’m sorry.  I was teasing.  I wouldn’t let you get in trouble.”

            “Do you know where my jacket is?” Chen asked.  Kai almost laughed.  Apparently Chen was way more worried about Insoo’s phone number than about Luhan framing him for phone theft.

            “Xiumin has it,” Luhan said.  Then he frowned.  “I think Xiumin has it.”

            Looking desperate, Chen jogged away.

            “Come,” Suho said simply, his hand on Luhan’s back guiding Luhan along.  Looking worried now, and contrite, Luhan went with him.

            Tao watched them go, shook his head, and turned to Kai, puzzled.  “What’s wrong with everybody today?”

            “Hormones,” Kai decided.  Hormones, boredom, and lack of self-control.  He shrugged.  “Suho hyung will take care of it.”

            Woohyun laughed, startled, when Sunggyu walked right up to him and started groping in his pockets.  “Hyung!”

            “Who did you show it to?  Who did you tell about it?”

            Disappointed, he felt in his pockets.  Empty.  Sunggyu had taken it.  Aw, shit.  “Sungjong gave it to me.  Just the other members.  And Luhan hyung and Xiumin hyung.”

            Sunggyu was studying his face, looking for lies.  “That’s it?”

            “That’s it,” he promised.  “Do you know who it belongs to?”

            “You never saw it,” Sunggyu told him.  “You don’t know anything about it.”  Then Sunggyu leaned in close, so close he had to close his eyes to resist the temptation to kiss Sunggyu’s soft, pink lips.  “When we get back to the dorm,” Sunggyu whispered.  “You’re going to learn a lesson about what’s public and what’s private and what I’m going to do to you if you ever walk around with something like this in your pocket again.”  When he opened his eyes, Sunggyu was looking right into him so intently that it was hard to breathe.  “Understand?”

            He was in a lot of trouble.  He really shouldn’t be so turned on.  He licked his lips and nodded.  “I understand.”  As Sunggyu turned away, he couldn’t resist.  “Hyung.”

            Sunggyu turned back, shooting him a questioning look.

            “Are you sure that we can’t keep it?”  He grinned.  “I think that it would fit you.  Let’s try it on.”

            Sunggyu gave him a warning look, pointing at him.

            Chastised, he sighed, tugging his shirt and jacket down over his arousal.  It was a shame.  He would’ve loved to see that gold and purple band on Sunggyu, even if it was just once.  He hoped that whoever did own it appreciated it.

            In despair, Chen wilted to the ground.  The dream was over.  He was never going to find that jacket.  He was never going to have Insoo’s number.  He was never going to place that call.

            Drawing his legs up, he dropped his forehead to his knees and sighed.  He’d asked everyone he could find, all day, about that jacket.  He’d picked up jackets on the grass and checked their collars.  He’d collected a whole pile of orange jackets and pawed through them, searching for inked numbers.  Nothing, nothing, nothing.

            He’d never dated a hyung before.  He’d had sex with the members, but that wasn’t the same; that didn’t count.  There was something different about Insoo.  Maturity, maybe, or just sexual heat.  Something that made him feel like he was about to advance from hanging out at the mall and fumbling around behind parents’ backs to something more adult and independent.

            He couldn’t let this opportunity slip through his fingers.  Hadn’t he learned by now to take chances and pursue his goals?  He should go find Insoo before the day ended, before it was too late.  He could explain about the lost jacket and get Insoo’s number again.  Insoo might not be interested anymore, after whatever Luhan had done, but he had to try.  At the very least, he had to try.  Insoo was so confident, so sexy, that he couldn’t give up so easily.  Guys like that didn’t show up every day, and they sure weren’t flirting with Chen every day.

            Determined, Chen raised his head-

            -and found Kang Insoo seated beside him, watching him, smiling.  “Awake?”

            Chen was so happy to see Insoo close and smiling right at him, he laughed.  “Sunbaenim!  I didn’t know you were here.”

            “I told you to call me hyung.”  Insoo was in yellow pants and a white tank top.  His bare arms were thick with muscle, the wind was blowing his hair into his eyes, and his smile was as gorgeous as ever.  “Your leader told me you wanted to speak to me.”

            He owed Suho for life.  Wincing, he tried to explain.  “I’m sorry.  I lost your number.  I lost my jacket.  It was beside me and then it wasn’t.  I’ve been looking for it all day!”

            Insoo brushed his bangs out of his eyes.  The motion drew Chen’s attention to his hand, to his arm, to the muscular strength of his shoulders, to - - fuck - - his chest.  Breathless, Chen just stared, trying not to drool.  Damn.  He had that body and, god, that mouth, and - - and he was leaning back, resting his weight behind himself on his hands, letting Chen look.  Practically inviting Chen to look.  His expression was calm, not cocky, not smug; he knew that Chen was staring, and he was okay with it; he seemed to be letting Chen admire him as a casual personal favor, not to show off.  “Someone out there has my number?”  He glanced around the field, looking curious but unworried.  “As long as it doesn’t spread too far, it should be okay.”  He tried to smooth his hair out of his face again, then gave up and let the breeze do what it wanted.  “Why don’t you give me your number this time?”

            Yes.  Yes, that was a terrific idea.  Chen said it, being very careful to pronounce each number clearly, and Insoo saved it in his phone.  Chen peeked; he put it under “Wolf Pup.”  Chen wondered enviously who else was in Insoo’s phone.  “Do you date a lot?”

            “No.  We spend a lot of time in Japan, and when we’re here we’re working.  There isn’t a lot of free time.  We’re not friends with many other idols.”

            Chen knew what that was like.  “The EXO-K members are friends with some other groups, but we don’t have much time to make personal friends.”

            Raising his knees, Insoo rubbed his thighs.  The back of his hand brushed against Chen’s thigh in a slow caress, and Chen tried to be discreet about shifting closer, wanting it to happen again.  “Your leader Suho said that it would be okay if we hung out sometime.  He said that you’ve been working hard and you deserve a break.”

            Feeling celebratory, he was flattered and grateful to Suho.  Then he tried to wrap his mind around the idea that he really might get to date Insoo.  It wasn’t a fantasy?  It was really going to happen?  He wondered what Insoo meant by “hanging out sometime.”  Whatever it meant, Chen was definitely interested, but was Insoo thinking along the lines of meeting for coffee or stripping down naked and rolling around together?  Coffee would be great, it really would, but the naked thing sounded way more interesting, overall.  “I’ll have to thank Suho.”  Rubbing his nose, he smiled, trying to be discreet about the way his gaze kept dropping to Insoo’s handsome, muscular body.  Such a simple white tank top.  He really wanted to see what was under it.

            Insoo’s smile was friendly and flirtatious.  “Me, too.”

            The members kept trying to talk to him about Luhan and somebody’s phone and Chen and some good-looking sunbae, but Kris couldn’t pay attention to any of it.  His current full-time occupations were avoiding Suho, hoping that Sunggyu would rescue him, and trying to keep a level head.  He wasn’t used to being so unnerved and on edge, and it was nerve-wracking to feel like he was teetering on the brink of disaster without being able to do anything about it.  At the moment, everything he cared about was in the hands of a sunbae he didn’t know well and who had no obligation to be a decent person to him.

            People were still gossiping about the blowjob note, but he could barely remember what it had said, anymore.  All he cared about was salvaging things with Suho.

            This whole stupid crisis - - which he would have completely avoided if he’d followed his own advice, and damn, was he never making that mistake again - - really proved what Suho had always tried to tell him: that his relationship with Suho was inextricably linked to the well-being of EXO as a whole.  If he screwed over Suho, it would cause a rift in the group.  A rift in the group could only lead to very bad things.  He didn’t want to dwell on the realities and consequences of that - - he’d have plenty of time to mull that over if Sunggyu exposed him - - but it made him even more keenly aware of things he’d already known.  That EXO was incomparably important to him.  That the members were precious to him, all of them.  That he was way more in love with Suho than he’d ever directly admitted.

            “Why does Chen get to date?” Luhan was asking.  “Why can’t I?  I’m older, I’m more responsible.”

            “More responsible?”  Kai was laughing.  “You just stole somebody’s phone.”

            Luhan punched him in the chest.  Lightly.  Sort of.  “Don’t say that!  And lower your voice.  I didn’t steal anything!”

            “What about the rest of us?” Baekhyun asked.  “Are we allowed to date?”

            “Who do you want to date?” Tao asked.

            Baekhyun grinned, his eyes darting from side to side.  “Nobody in particular.”

            Kai shook his head, looking away and rolling his eyes.  “He’s a sunbae, he’s wearing orange, and he has a great body.”

            Tao’s eyebrows shot up.  “Henry hyung?”  Before Kai could respond, he said, “Oh, Mom’s coming.”

            “Don’t call him that,” Luhan scolded.

            Kris glanced in the direction Tao was looking and saw Suho strolling toward them, an arm around Chen, who was beaming with happiness.  Stepping away, Kris shielded himself with his umbrella, then casually and without explanation sauntered off.

            “Kang Insoo and Chen?” Changjo asked.  “Really?”

            “Mmm.”  L.Joe snapped another photo with his phone.  “Stop squinting.”

            Shielding his eyes with one hand, Changjo said, “It’s bright.”  Then he laughed.  “Why are you taking so many pictures?”

            “Because you’re handsome, and I’m bored, and there are only so many things I can do to you in public.”

            Blushing, Changjo lowered his hand, pulling his hood up.

            L.Joe pushed it back down.  “Don’t cover up, I’m looking at you.”  He took another photo.  No one was close enough to hear, but he made sure not to move his lips very clearly as he said, “Luhan hyung wants you.”

            “What?”  Changjo seemed genuinely surprised to hear it.  “No, he wants you.”  He grinned, looking pleased about it.  “Didn’t you see how he looked at you?”

            “I saw how he looked at you,” L.Joe countered.  “He was imagining things.”

            “That’s how you look at me,” Changjo said, and L.Joe smiled; it was true.  “Why would he be interested in me?  You told him I was a baby.”

            “You are,” L.Joe said, patting his cheek.

            Mischief flashed in Changjo’s eyes.  “That’s not what you say when I’m-”

            “Ya!”  Laughing, he pressed his hand over Changjo’s mouth.  “That’s private.”

            “Behaving?” C.A.P. asked, sitting down beside them.

            “Yes, hyung,” Changjo said.

            “Never,” L.Joe said.

            C.A.P. leaned back in the grass, hands behind his head.

            Expecting to hear snoring at any moment, L.Joe took another photograph.  The sunlight, the black hair, the pink clothes, that calm and happy little smile: he loved Changjo like this.


            “Mmm?”  He flipped through the photos he’d taken.

            “If Luhan hyung asked you.  Would you do it?”

            “Do what?”  Puzzled, he glanced up, meeting Changjo’s eyes.

            Changjo shrugged, raising his eyebrows.

            Oh.  That?  He wasn’t sure how to answer.  He wanted to reply with something flip and light, but it was kind of a weird question, wasn’t it?  Or, not weird at all, just uncomfortable.  “I don’t know,” he admitted.  He searched Changjo’s expression.  “Would it bother you?”

            Changjo looked down, picking at the grass, avoiding his eyes.  “Why would it bother me?”

            Exasperated, L.Joe hit his shoulder.  “You know why!”

            He blushed but still wouldn’t look up.  “It wouldn’t bother C.A.P. hyung if Chunji hyung did it.  Why should it bother me if you do it?”

            “I’m not Chunji and you’re not C.A.P. hyung.”  He couldn’t believe that they were working out something like this in a public field, but it was best to be honest, right?  “It would bother me.  If you did it.  I wouldn’t like it.”

            Suddenly, Changjo was looking at him again, wondering and surprised.  “Really?”

            “Yes!”  He laughed, relieved that Changjo didn’t look displeased or resentful.  “That’s not how I want it.  I don’t want to share.”

            Changjo looked relieved, too, and hopeful.  “I don’t have to share, either?”

            L.Joe started to feel guilty.  They should have talked about this earlier.  He’d had offers from other guys, he’d had opportunities, but he’d turned them down.  Maybe Changjo hadn’t taken it for granted that he’d turn them down, had wondered how he’d react when the next opportunity arose, had worried about it.  He felt bad that he’d let it bother Changjo.  “Let’s not share.  It’ll be just us.  You and me.  You’re stuck with me!”

            Quickly, he took a photo.  What a terrific, happy smile.

            Kris was taking a meandering path around the edge of the clusters of idols when he saw Sunggyu a little ahead, strolling similarly in his direction.  He slowed his already lazy pace, trying to decide if Sunggyu had just made eye contact with him or simply squinted in his general direction.  Cautiously, he continued forward.

            As they drew near to each other, Sunggyu said, “Your team worked hard,” and tucked a jacket under Kris’ arm.

            “Ah, sunbaenim, thank you,” Kris said politely, clutching the jacket to his side.  And they both continued on.

            Maintaining a calm expression, he walked for another minute or so, feeling over the jacket.  There was something hard inside of it, like a metal ring.  As carefully and discreetly as he could, without looking, he transferred the ring from the jacket to his own pocket.  Once it was in his pocket, he stroked it, feeling immensely grateful and almost weak-kneed with relief.  It felt wonderfully familiar, the weight of it, the impacted stones.

            It was his.  It was back.  He’d narrowly escaped a terrible fate.

            He was going to stop carrying this thing around.  It was a bad habit; he knew that.  It had been a terrible risk; he’d known, that, too.

            Its typical function was sexual, and, yeah, it did carry an erotic charge.  But he didn’t keep it with him just to fondle it and think about the last time he and Suho had used it and get turned on; that was just a happy side effect.  He kept it with him because it was a gift from Suho and a reminder of what they shared.  It was tangible proof of their relationship and what they meant to each other and all that Suho entrusted him with.  They didn’t write each other poetry or send each other greeting cards; he didn’t have flowers to press between the pages of a journal or anything.  He had his memories, which were intangible, and his members, who wouldn’t fit into his pocket, and this.  He kept it close, kept it with him.  When they’d promoted separately and he’d been in China, he’d gotten used to slipping it into his pocket.  When things became too frustrating, too demanding, when Xiumin was overwhelmed by the language barrier and Chen was homesick and Lay’s voice was going out and Luhan was quarreling with Tao and their manager was adding more schedules to their already overloaded days, when Kris’s personal resources were waning and he needed a boost, needed strength, needed a reminder that he could do this, he’d reach into his pocket and rub his thumb over the ring and spend a moment picturing Suho’s face, feeling Suho’s hands slide over his bare skin, hearing Suho’s smooth voice: “The company trusts you, the members trust you.  For me, it couldn’t be anyone but you.  There’s no one else.  That’s why I love you.  Do you understand?  It isn’t that I think you’re handsome, I’m attracted to you, so I’m giving you the members.  No.  You’re someone I can trust with the members, the only one I would give them to.  Because you’re that man, that’s why I want you, that’s why you’re so handsome to me.  The man I can entrust my members to, that’s the man I can love.”

            As he ran his thumb over the ring now, he remembered the first time they’d used it, the day Suho had given it to him.  Remembered the last time they’d used it, his weight pressing Suho into the bed, Suho’s arms coiling around his neck, Suho’s ecstatic, panting breaths, Suho’s asshole contracting tightly around his cock, Suho’s bright eyes and flushed cheeks, the hungry movements of Suho’s insatiable body.  It had seemed like they’d fucked forever, his cock throbbing with a deep, ceaseless ache, Suho’s slim, muscular body urging him onward.  He remembered Suho’s flawless skin like silk under his hands, remembered licking up Suho’s sweat like it was precious water.  But the best part, the very best, had been afterward, when the fire in their blood had finally burned out, when he’d held Suho in his arms and fallen asleep.

            God, he was too young to be such a romantic sap, wasn’t he?  Then again, he was also too young to be saddled with a wife and ten noisy kids, but life took some weird turns, sometimes.

            Suho was dancing with Kai and Tao, Chen joining in cheerfully, when Kris walked up looking calm and relaxed and incredibly handsome.  Casually, Kris draped a jacket around Chen’s shoulders.

            Hurriedly, Chen pawed the jacket off and checked the collar.  “Hyung!”  His face lit up as he clutched the jacket closer.  “You found it!”

            With a deliberately careless smile, Kris shrugged.  “Thought you might want it.”

            “My jacket!” Chen told the rest of them gleefully.  “Look!”  With immense pride, he showed them the number inked inside.

            “It’s very nice,” Kai said dutifully.

            “Aw, he has cute writing,” Suho said, squeezing Chen’s shoulder.

            “Duizhang,” Tao said.  “Did you find that thing?”

            Oh?  “What thing?” Suho asked.

            “I got it,” Kris said.  Then he smiled at Suho, the heart-stopping smile which always made Suho smile back, and squeezed the back of Suho’s neck.  “Love you.”

            Surprised, Suho laughed.  “Love you, too.”

            “Aw,” Tao said, hugging Kris from behind.  “So cute.”

            “You’re embarrassing yourself,” Xiumin said under his breath as Baekhyun dragged him across the field.

            “I’m not.”  Spotting Hoya seated under an umbrella, he smiled, picking up the pace.

            “How many times in one day do you have to talk to the same person?”

            Baekhyun snorted.  “What about you and Jang Dongwoo?”

            Xiumin didn’t have a reply for that.

            Seeing them, Hoya smiled back.  He leaned back, relaxing his weight on his hands, raising his knees and spreading his thighs.  It was practically a written invitation to sink down onto his lap, and Baekhyun hurried forward with an eager shimmy.

            Reaching Hoya, Baekhyun crouched down at his side, resting a hand on his hard, muscular thigh.  For balance.  Baekhyun was close, practically on top of him, but he didn’t move away, just smiled.  “Baekhyun.”

            “Sunbaenim.”  Baekhyun licked his lips.  “It’s been nice to spend time with you today.  I feel like we’ve grown closer.”

            Hoya smiled.  “I like to be close.”

            Mmm.  Baekhyun resisted the urge to crawl into Hoya’s lap.  He promised himself that someday soon he was going to spend long, pleasure-filled hours plastered to Hoya’s firm chest, and he was going to love it.  “Some of our other members play soccer together, sometimes.  Maybe you could join us.”

            “I’d like that.”  Hoya tipped his head to one side, and Baekhyun admired the strong line of his jaw.  “I’d love to see you on the field.”

            “You played really well today.  You were terrific,” Baekhyun said, ready to peel off his clothes and get to business.

            “Do you like to spend any time in the goal?” Hoya asked.  “You know.  Tending.  Guarding.  Receiving.  Catching.”

            That was…oh.  Oh.  Immensely turned on, Baekhyun slid his hand a bit higher on Hoya’s thigh, breathing through parted lips.  “That depends.  I love to, if the right man’s sending the ball my way.”

            Hoya’s gaze dropped, then dragged slowly upward.  Heat rose through him as Hoya’s gaze worked its way up his body, and he licked his lips again, forcing himself to remain still.  With an approving quirk of an eyebrow, Hoya met his eyes and smirked.  “Should I write my number on your jacket?”

            “Oh, um,” Xiumin said suddenly.

            That was all of the warning Baekhyun had before Dongwoo sat down beside them.  “Hi,” Dongwoo said, brushing his hair out of his eyes.  “Water?” he asked Hoya.

            “Hyung.”  Hoya pushed at his chest.  “Go.”

            “What?  Why?”  Dongwoo spotted someone over Baekhyun’s shoulder and smiled, holding out a hand.  “Water.”

            Handing over a bottle, Woohyun sat down with them.  He looked at Baekhyun, looked at Hoya, looked at Baekhyun, and smirked.  “How’s it going?”

            “Fine, sunbaenim,” Xiumin said, grabbing Baekhyun’s elbow and dragging him away from Hoya, hauling him upward.

            “You’re leaving?” Dongwoo asked.

            “Our leader’s calling us,” Xiumin said.

            “Let’s meet sometime,” Hoya said to Baekhyun.  The confidence of his smile made Baekhyun want to sink back down into his lap again.  “You can get in the goal and let me penetrate your defenses.”

            When they finally got back to the dorm, the members who’d missed the ISAC wanted to hear all about it.  Tao, who’d insisted that he was fine after his injury, turned into a wide-eyed child in need of pampering and attention, and Suho fell for it completely.  Disappearing into the bedroom with Tao for an orgy of nurturing, Suho asked Kris to handle Luhan.

            Kris listened to Luhan’s explanations, rationalizations, and apologies.  Then he took away Luhan’s phone.

            Spending all day baking in the sun made Kris want to go right to bed, but Chen was holed up in his room, laughing on the phone with Insoo.  Since his room was occupied, and his Suho was occupied, he sat on the couch, stretching out his arms along the back, stretching out his legs in front of him, taking up as much room as he could.  Laughing, talking, humming, dancing, teasing, a parade of members passed by.

            Lay sat with him for a while before being pulled away by Chanyeol.  Suho was out of Tao’s room and wandering the dorm, making the rounds, checking in with everyone.  Sehun and Kai were having a hushed argument about something, but it didn’t look serious enough to warrant attention.

            Eventually, Suho sat down beside Kris.  Leaning back against Kris’ arm, he ran both hands through his hair, pushing it away from his face, and sighed.  His smile was tired but affectionate.  “Okay?”

            Kris nodded.  “You?”

            “Mmm, having a bit of a dilemma.”  Without explaining that, he scooted closer, tucking his legs in, resting his head on Kris’ arm, licking his lips the way he did when he was horny: slowly, his tongue lingering in one corner.  “You talked to Luhan hyung?”

            “Yeah.  Took his phone away from him.”

            Suho nodded, apparently finding that an acceptable punishment.  “I’ll talk to him in the morning.”

            “Tao’s okay?”  Kris hoped that the answer was yes, obviously, for Tao’s sake, but also for more selfish reasons.  Suho was likely to decide to spend the night in Tao’s room instead of in Kris’ bed if he thought that Tao needed him.

            “He’s resting.  Lay’s switching beds with Xiumin to stay with him.”

            Good.  Kris perked up at the news.  His cock perked up, too, as he watched Suho’s tongue rub and glide over those soft, red lips again.  Yeah, this might be a really good night.  “What’s your dilemma?”

            With a smile, Suho sighed, biting at his lower lip.  “You know that thing I do with my mouth?”

            Had someone turned the heat on?  Kris’ body temperature had just gone up about ten degrees.  “Yeah,” he said, his voice coming out low and rough.

            “You mentioned it earlier, and I’ve been thinking about it ever since.  Thinking about that and other things.”  He ran his hand through his hair again, squirming just a little, a restless twitch of his hips, the kind of thing he did unconsciously, not aware that it turned Kris on.  “I planned to come back to the dorm and,” his tongue snuck to the corner of his lips again, “go to bed early.”

            Yes.  “Sounds good,” Kris said, moving in on him.

            With a smile, Suho stroked his chest but kept talking.  “I was angry, earlier, that Luhan hyung treated me so lightly.  It’s not a good thing if members don’t respect each other and don’t respect their leader.”  Suho gazed at him with solemn, seeking eyes.  “You avoided me today.  You lost something and didn’t want me to know about it.  Are you treating me lightly, too?”

            “No,” Kris said immediately.  “I didn’t tell you because I didn’t want you to worry.  And I didn’t want you to be angry,” he admitted.

            Suho’s expression was serious, thoughtful, reserved.  He was looking up at Kris the same way he looked at their managers when they delivered bad news they expected him to break to the other members.

            He’d never looked at Kris that way before, and it was about the fiftieth thing to happen that day that made Kris realize how important their relationship was, how very necessary it was to Kris to have his respect and his trust and his love.  “I made a mistake.  A bad one.  I handled it the best way I could think of.  It won’t happen again.”  Kris winced.  “That sounds trite, but it’s true.  It won’t happen again.”  Suho’s expression was still too quiet, too solemn.  “I’m sorry.  I learned a lot today about - - I don’t know, about us.”

            A spark of interest lit Suho’s face.  “Us?”

            “Yeah, us.”  He didn’t know how well he could explain, but he trusted that Suho would understand him.  “You mean a lot to me.  You’re important to me, and the way you feel about me is important to me, too.  It isn’t just that, ‘Oh, things are going well between us, that’s nice.’  I need you to love me and trust me.  It matters to me that you’re happy with me, and I think that I should work harder on that.  I can’t take a day off from being a leader, and I can’t take a day off from being a member, and I can’t take a day off from earning your respect.”  He smiled, hooking his arm under Suho’s knees and pulling.  Unbalanced, Suho fell back across the seat of the couch with a sudden, bright laugh.  Feeling immensely better, relieved, hopeful, Kris crawled over him, spreading his thighs and smiling down into his face.  “I love you, you know.”

            “I know.”  Suho’s smile was happy, fond, flattered, filled with romance and affection as his hands slid over Kris’ waist.  “I love you, too.”

            Kris kissed him slowly, taking pleasure in every soft stroke of his tongue, in the needy way his fists balled in Kris’ shirt.  His slow, consuming kisses, his soft, panting breaths, the way he moaned in aching, incoherent syllables when Kris’ hand slid under his clothes to caress his skin - - all of this might have been lost, shut out to Kris forever.  Wanting him, needing to get the most out of every moment of this sexual intimacy, Kris took his mouth in deep, possessive kisses, sliding a hand under his hips, grinding against him.

            “Ahh, hhuhh, hyung.”  Panting, Suho rocked upward, immediately rubbing himself against Kris’ cock.

            Grunting in pleasure, Kris palmed the taut roundness of Suho’s ass.  He needed it, and it was so hot, so sexy, so rewarding, how quickly Suho responded to him, how readily Suho pulled him closer, rocked against him, kissed him like there was special ecstasy to be found in his mouth.

            “Hyung.”  Suho kissed him deeply, soft lips hungry for him, one hand stroking his hip, plucking at his waistband, nudging his pants down.  “Let’s go now, let’s go.”

            Yes, now.  What a terrific idea.  Lurching upward, Kris grabbed at Suho, dragging him from the couch.  Laughing, he stumbled behind Kris, who went straight for the bedroom.

            Chen and Xiumin were sitting on one bed, talking; Kai and D.O. were on another bed, making out.  “Go,” Kris said, pulling off his own shirt before tugging off Suho’s.

            Laughing, grumbling, and offering fairly lewd advice, the members left, closing the door.  Kicking his pants off, Kris sat on the foot of the bed, Suho stepping between his thighs and kissing him.  Tilting his face up as Suho’s fingers threaded through his hair, he ran his hands down Suho’s naked body, cherishing the sensual beauty of it, the eroticism of it, the creamy smoothness of Suho’s skin, the firmness of muscle.

            Slowly, taking his time, Suho slid down onto his knees, leaving hot, moist kisses down Kris’ chest, sliding his hands over Kris’ thighs.  By the time he was down there, Kris was too turned on to make sense and had to settle for moaning, “Uh, ohh, unnnhhh.”

            “Ah, hyung,” Suho sighed, his voice filled with pleasure and gratitude, like this was all some big favor that Kris was doing for him and not the other way around.  As he gazed lovingly at Kris’ cock, his hands converged on it, stroking and shaping.  Kris rubbed his arms, feeling the softness of his skin, the hard strength of his biceps.  And then his head was dipping and his lips were parting and his mouth was on Kris’ cock like hot, wet magic.

            There was no coyness to Suho’s suction, nothing clumsy or shy about his lips, his tongue.  He knew exactly what he wanted, exactly what Kris liked, and he got directly to it, matching the bobbing of his head with the rhythm of his hand.  His eyes were closed, his cheeks hollowing fiercely with each sucking pull from his red-lipped mouth.  His black, well-groomed eyebrows kept drawing together in concentration, then relaxing again as he moaned, his smooth voice rich with pleasure.  All of Suho’s focus was on Kris, Kris’ cock, the slide of his lips up and down the rigid shaft.

            “Ah, hhunh, yes.”  Groaning, Kris tried to hold still, not wanting to interrupt, clutching at the edge of the bed as pleasure and sexual heat rose in him like Suho was twisting a dial.  Each long, deep suck felt amazing and he curled his toes against the floor, trying to hold on, wanting this incredible experience to keep happening to him.  “Unh, Suho, Suho,” he said, his voice unsteady, pleasure expanding through him as Suho’s mouth continued its relentless suction.

            At that, Suho’s hand tightened its grip, his pace speeding, and no amount of self-control on Kris’s part could have stopped the orgasm Suho was determined to incite.  Moaning, Suho sucked hard, and ecstasy exploded like a fireball, dynamic and wild, shocking Kris’ body and stealing his breath.  His hands clenched on Suho’s biceps as passion tore a guttural cry from his throat.  Fuck, “Ohhhh,” yes, “ahh, aahhh,” yes, “Suho.”

            Pleasure was still rumbling through him, and he wanted Suho, wanted to be close, wanted to share this feeling.  He was dragging Suho upward, and Suho was crawling over him, and as they rolled over, their bodies slid against each other, Suho moaning, “Hyung, ah, I can’t take it,” at the hot, sensual contact.  While Suho’s thigh rose over his shoulder, he ducked his head, sucking Suho’s hard, smooth cock into his mouth.  “Ah, ah,” Suho moaned, shuddering.  “Ah, hyung, that’s it, yes.”

            As Suho’s hips jerked erratically, he rode it out, bobbing his head to the rhythm of Suho’s panting cries.  His hands splayed over Suho’s pelvis, he sucked harder, hungry for it, wanting to make Suho come, wanting to hear Suho call out, wanting to send Suho to the same ecstasy he’d just known.

            Coiling his tongue around the silken hardness of Suho’s erection, Kris flicked his gaze up the length of Suho’s body.  The beauty of Suho’s writhing, muscular body ensnared him and he groaned, sucking Suho’s cock down to the root, sliding his hands over Suho’s thighs, rubbing, squeezing.  “Mmmmahh, hyung, hyung, ah, Kris hyung, ah!”  Crying his name, Suho tugged at his hair, hips rocking, cock plunging between his lips as stringy spurts of cum striped the back of his throat.

            Only now that he’d made Suho come did his own satisfaction and languor hit him.  Clearing his throat, he raised his head, pushing himself up on a weak arm.  “Mmm, wow,” Suho moaned, rolling away.

            Crawling up the bed, he stretched out, settling snugly against Suho’s back.  When he wrapped his arm around Suho’s waist, pulling Suho back to his chest, Suho relaxed against him with a sigh of contentment.  His hand splayed across Suho’s abs, he closed his eyes for a moment.

            Yeah.  This was it.  Right then and there, Kris felt completely satisfied with his life.

            Baekhyun was opening kitchen cabinets and not finding anything to eat when Chen skidded into the kitchen, clutched wildly at his arm, and tried to drag him away.  “Now!  Hurry!  Shower!”

            “What?  Why?” Baekhyun asked, not sure whether to fight Chen off or play along.  He was acting like there was some emergency, but he wasn’t yelling, “Fire!” he was yelling, “Shower!”

            “Hurry!” he insisted, shoving Baekhyun into the bathroom.  “They’re coming, they’re on their way.”  Haphazardly yanking off his clothes, he started the shower.

            “Who?” Baekhyun demanded as Chen stood under the spray.

            “Insoo hyung,” Chen said with impatience and joy.  Lots of joy.  “Hoya sunbae.  Hurry!”  Reaching out, he dragged Baekhyun into the shower with him.

            “What?!”  Still dressed and increasingly soaked, Baekhyun grabbed Chen’s arms, staring into his happy face.  “Did you say ‘Hoya?’”

            A tap at the door.  “Suho hyung?”

            Kris liked to keep the actual sexual action private, but he didn’t care what the other members saw of the before and after.  Since the sight of the two of them naked in bed together wasn’t exactly new, he didn’t bother to cover up.  Suho, meanwhile, just called, “Yes?  Dongsaeng-ah?  What do you need?” and tried to sit up.

            Pressing Suho back down, Kris tightened his arm around Suho.  He wasn’t ready to let go yet.

            Chen crept in cautiously at first, saw that nothing was going on, and approached more naturally, his hair still wet from a recent shower.  “Hey, ah, mmm.  There are some people here.  Our manager wants you to approve them before they come in.”

            “People?”  Suho sounded puzzled.  This time, Kris let him sit up, regretting the loss of the physical contact as soon as it was gone.  “Who?”

            Chen blushed.  “Hoya sunbaenim and, ah, Insoo hyung.  They’re, uh, downstairs.”

            Kris raised his eyebrows.  This kid was bold.  “You invited Insoo sunbaenim here tonight?”

            “He kind of, ah…”  Chen laughed.  “Yes,” he admitted with a nervous smile.  And then he crouched beside the bed, seizing Suho’s hands and gazing up into Suho’s face with angelic hope.  “Please, Suho hyung, please?  You told him that I’ve been working hard and it would be okay.”

            “You can’t invite friends over without permission,” Suho said.  “You know the rules.  There are too many of us here.  You have to ask first.”  And then, as Chen’s expression was falling, he added, “But he can come in.”  Squeezing Chen’s hands, Suho smiled, eyes crinkling at the edges.  “Now we have to figure out where to put him!”

            Reaching the door, Hoya nodded at Insoo.

            “Sunbaenim.”  Insoo bowed humbly, smiling.

            “Hey.”  Curious, he gave Insoo a quick once-over.  “Who…?”

            “Ah.”  Insoo flashed another smile.  “Chen.”  His eyebrows rose in question.  “You?”

            “Byun Baekhyun.”


            Just then, the door opened and Suho smiled at them.  “Hoya sunbaenim, Insoo sunbaenim, hello, hello.”  They entered with a lot of bowing and greeting.  “Dongsaeng-ah, could you - - oh, here he is.”

            Chen greeted them nervously but happily, beaming at Insoo like he couldn’t help himself.  “We can, ah, talk in Suho hyung’s room.  It’s a little messy, I’m sorry.”

            “It’s fine,” Insoo said.  Taking Chen’s hand and giving it a meaningful squeeze that seemed to delight Chen, he nodded at Hoya.  “Sunbaenim.”

            Hoya nodded and watched them go.  An instant later, Baekhyun was striding toward him, wearing only a white T-shirt and red boxer-briefs, face flushed.  “Sunbaenim.  Hi.”

            “Hi.”  This was promising.  He liked this.

            “Hi,” Baekhyun said again, and laughed, looking excited and nervous.  “Um, here, come, I’ll show you my room.”

            Hoya found himself pulled past openly watching members of EXO and into a bedroom.  D.O. was gathering up bedding; Sehun was in one bed, asleep.  “Out,” Baekhyun said, and pulled on Sehun’s arm.  “Seriously, come on, out!”

            Sehun blinked in groggy confusion.  “Sorry, sunbaenim,” D.O. said, clutching bedding in one hand and dragging along Sehun in the other.

            “I was asleep,” Sehun mumbled in protest as D.O. hauled him away.  “He gives horrible blowjobs,” he warned Hoya.

            “Ya!”  Baekhyun hastily closed the door.  “I don’t,” he was quick to reassure Hoya.  “That’s such a lie.”

            They were alone; the door was closed.  Hoya had been itching for this all day.  Grinning, he slid his hands over Baekhyun’s waist, drawing Baekhyun near, feeling heat start to simmer as Baekhyun pressed close against his body.  “Let’s find out.”

Series page: "The Note"

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Copyright November 16, 2013
by Matthew Haldeman-Time