Genre: AU!General, Romance/Minor!Action
Summary: Sungmin’s always been a little skeptical, but this is clearly horrible luck. Sungmin’s been kidnapped twice in his life. By the same man no less.
They’d arrive at the port tomorrow morning.
The ship itself still had three ports left, and while two missing passengers might draw some attention, he had a friend who’d handle the situation once it comes to before it reaches the media. Nearly every loose end was being wrapped up, their leave was nearly finalized.
Kibum logged out of his email once contacting his friend again and signed out completely, he walked outside and checked the cabin first. Sungmin wasn’t there. Kibum wondered where he’d go and began to search for him throughout the dock.
At last he found him sitting at the bar and Kibum began to approach.
He stopped mid-step and his jaw clenches, there was another man making advances in Sungmin’s direction, a type so obvious that it nearly makes Kibum roll his eyes.
But Sungmin soon looked around and happened to see Kibum there and slipped out of the chair, approaching him steadfast.
Kibum shifted his eyes, he’s tense for the wrong reasons.
“Finally, I was wondering where you went,” Sungmin said.
“Just had some matters to settle.” Kibum stared at the tourist, “Does he speak Korean?”
“Good, then we can talk.”
Sungmin notes his tone and nodded. They continued their exact plan for tomorrow, revisiting important details with the third man beside Sungmin who’s oblivious to their scheme.
The tourist offered Kibum a drink and asked, “Are you sure you wouldn’t like a glass?”
Kibum politely declined and faced forward, leaving the tourist to redirect his attention to Sungmin.
He sees the man continue invading Sungmin’s personal space and it irritates him. Worst, he understands their English conversation, and the other’s words are heavy with interest.
“I’ll be right back,” Sungmin told him as the two walk away, Kibum just gives a brief wave and faced forward, folding his arms above the bar counter.
He recalled his conversations with Sungmin, and he’s sure Sungmin doesn’t have someone. He mentioned his worried father, his friends, his classmates in passing, but never mentioned anything about a boyfriend or girlfriend.
He doubted Sungmin has a short list of suitors, he might just be particular.
What would be on that list for him? Intelligent? Attractive? Booksmart? A good career, maybe their money would have to match his.
“My house isn’t too bad,” Kibum mumbled. His eyes darted to the different types of alcohol behind the bartender. If he could drink, he would.
He heard footsteps approach him and soon enough, Sungmin returned to the counter. “He offered to show me around to the city at tomorrow’s port, I told him I wasn’t interested.”
“Did he ask why?”
“Yes, I said being kidnapped was sort of interfering in that. I don’t think he believed me.”
Kibum hid his smile and buried his face into his arms. “That ended the moment you became willing.”
Sungmin looked at the bottles on the wall, “Which do you want to try next?”
“You’re aware we can’t pay for all that.”
“Don’t worry, he said to put it on his tab.” Sungmin said simply.
Kibum smirked as he lifted his head up, deviously wondering just how many rounds he could order just for the sake of it. Sungmin offered him one cup, but Kibum begrudgingly explained. “I can’t, I’m allergic to alcohol… Haven’t you drunk enough?”
“I’m pretty tolerant of it.” Sungmin said and finishes his drink with little trouble, Kibum’s mildly impressed.
Kibum then leaned in and peered at the younger’s expression. Kibum smiled, “Liar, your face’s getting red.”
“...That’s not why I’m red.”
Kibum paused, and gradually the older man pulled away slightly and stood up straight in his seat as Sungmin ordered another bottle.
With the circumstances of their relationship, there was no need to be reserved by either party. But even to Kibum, he felt Sungmin was a little too truthful with him.
The two were left in silence for the rest of the evening, and when Sungmin’s had his fill, the two returned to their cabin. Sungmin held his last opened bottle with him.
Kibum changed out of his clothes back into the clothes he first wore, now cleaned. He peaked up at Sungmin who made little movement, “Are you all packed? You should change now, I don’t want to be too late when he pull up, or we’ll miss our train.”
“...I know,” Sungmin replied.
Kibum kept his eyes averted from the other man the whole while, focusing on organizing his things when he saw movement from his peripheral vision. And when he finally looked ahead, Sungmin leaned in.
Kibum was frozen as Sungmin closed their distance and there’s only inches between their lips left to spare.
Sungmin then stopped, pulling himself before he can and sat at the edge of his own bed, looking pensive as he regarded Kibum.
“It’s probably a rule to never get involved with your clients, hm?”
Utterly enthralled with the man before him, Kibum made every effort to clear his mind, to finally be able to speak, “to be honest, there’s never been a rule. Seeing as how they were all underage and most of them children, it was a given.”
Sungmin tilted his head. “What do you do then?”
“I’m… not quite sure.”
Sungmin looked amused by his reaction. “You seem to have an answer for everything, seeing you stumped like this… I like seeing it.” He admitted.
Sungmin eventually settled and finishes the rest of his bottle without interruption.
Sungmin doesn’t say another word as he tossed away the can and changed into his first set of clothes. Once done, he settled into his bed, and it doesn’t take long before Sungmin’s in a deep sleep.
Kibum lowered his eyes, and an uneasy smile formed on his lips. “It was my mistake… I underestimated you…”
Kibum folded his arms above his knees and leaned against the wall, glimpsing at the peaceful man’s face and quietly uttered.
“Believe me when I say you’re my only exception.”
When morning arrives, they leave the port and head for the train station within the foreign country.
“I’ll take a few transfers, but we should get there eventually.” Kibum muttered with a few pamphlets he takes from the ticket center.
“It’s so cold here,” Sungmin shivered once they’re outside, while his clothes weren’t thin, they weren’t thick enough for this sort of weather either.
“Stay here,” Kibum ordered and Sungmin did so, blowing into his hands as he waited on the spot. When he heard Kibum returned, he was about to face him when he felt a jacket over his shoulders.
“This was the thickest they had.”
Sungmin put it on and noticed Kibum only wore a light sweater, “What about you?”
Kibum smiled, “I’m fine. Let’s go, they’re boarding.” He said and Sungmin quickly followed.
They didn’t stand out too much at least, and with no one understanding them, their conversation was kept to each other as they occupied the isolated two seats within the cart.
Sungmin glanced his way but tried to focus on the menu.
“Can you read it?”
Sungmin realized his hard stare could be mistaken for being unable to read it, he looked back at the menu and realized the translation font was smaller than he thought it’d be. “I can’t.”
Kibum picked up the menu and helped him along.
They didn’t have quite a cabin to themselves, Kibum had told him it was a little out of his price range, and the two settled with two seats side by side one another. Sungmin briefly felt his hand as Kibum helped him sit down in the cramped seating, and it felt frigid.
“Take my jacket.”
“I’m fine,” Kibum assured. “It’s just a little cold, nothing I haven’t been through before.”
“Then you don’t get sick?”
Kibum met his eyes and smirked, “If I’m lucky.”
Sungmin exhaled, “You should have brought something for yourself. I know a client’s health is important, but can’t you afford to care for yourself too?”
“Not always, in this line of work, you have to think of the priority.”
“And right now, that priority is me?”
Kibum just smiled, and Sungmin knew his answer. Kibum watched as Sungmin rummaged through his small bag and pulled out a clean towel, one taken from the ship. He placed it over the two of them without asking Kibum’s permission, and the latter just looked coy at his gesture
They returned to silence, albeit a reluctant one. Kibum observed the train and its sleeping passengers as the night dawned on their windows, he side-eyed Sungmin who remained awake.
Something was troubling him again.
Sungmin turned his way as Kibum settled further into his seat. “Say what’s on your mind… just do it sooner than later so I can sleep.”
Sungmin shifted his eyes outside, “Being the priority to one’s parents is expected… but I think my father took that too far.”
“It doesn’t sound as if your father harmed you.”
“He didn’t,” Sungmin uttered, and crossed his arms, “My father… He’s been good to me, he treated me well, I threw fits here and there and we don’t always see things eye to eye, but it doesn’t mean he was a bad person by any right.”
Kibum just kept listening.
Sungmin held a struggled expression. “How am I supposed to treat him after knowing what occurred between them? He took me away, and didn’t even bother to give me the whole truth about my mom, not correcting me when I thought ill of her... Am I just suppose to act like nothing’s happened?” Sungmin then turned to the man. “What do you think?”
“It’s not my role to offer my advice in family matters.” Kibum says plainly and automatically. He always reverted to that when it involves these questions and loses his light-hearted demeanor.
Sungmin scoffed, “you’re involved whether you like it or not considering your line of work.”
“Well, that line of work might see little now, considering where my latest obstacle landed me.” Kibum lightly mused.
“Do you ever ask questions to make sure you’re working for the right person? What if in fact, my mother was a person I had to escape and my dad was just trying anything to get me away? Do you ever consider that it’s best if the child isn’t reunited?”
Kibum reached for his towel and placed it over his face. “Go to sleep.” He ordered.
Behind the towel, Sungmin leered in contempt as he tugged the towel from his face, earning a quiet laugh from Kibum.
“Do you remember what you asked me?” Kibum whispered, gaining Sungmin’s attention. “Do you remember asking me why I had such old information on you? That memory is all your mother has of you.”
“But I’ve changed.”
“You have… all people do over the years, including your father. Just remember to give your mother the same respect. Anything that comes after is out of my hands.”
They soon changed trains again, and it’s no better than the last one, except the terrain was rockier in this one. At the abrupt bump of the train, Sungmin hits into its wall and winces a bit, and sees Kibum nodding off against his shoulder. And though it wakes up some passengers, the man makes no reaction.
“Is it really out of your hands?” Sungmin murmured.
Though he was increasingly worried with each train they took, a step closer to their destination, he glanced at Kibum and his concerns waver a bit. On this road that Kibum took him on, the man was the only real comfort he had to rely on as his thoughts divided between his parents.
For some reason, despite his comments, he knew Kibum wouldn’t be so reckless. He doubted Kibum would pick children after hearing only one side of the story, and after meeting Sungmin’s mother, something must’ve cemented that.
After all, Kibum could have left even with Sungmin within his grasps. There was no more monetary value now, he’d risk another sentence, and making an enemy out of his father was considered a fool’s decision. There were too many variables against his decision.
It was safe to say that during this journey together, he trusted him.
Kibum was awake those early morning hours, seeing out the final train’s window at the dark blue sky. That meant they were heading there soon.
The thought is a little bitter in Kibum’s mind.
The train rocks a bit more as they go down the track. Sungmin had his back turned to Kibum, with his head resting against his shoulder and his jacket covering his shoulders. When the jacket nearly falls, Kibum grabs and pulled it up for him.
He paused, now facing the man as he looked down and grabbed the towel. He chuckled at the sight of it, clutching it in his hand.
His concern for him was growing, and Kibum knew early on when it began to change from his usual worry for a client to becoming more personal. He disguised each attempt as doing so for Sungmin’s mother was easy to do, but he felt even Sungmin saw through most of it.
Sungmin was better than in that aspect, Kibum recalled in that night when Sungmin could’ve done as he wanted… Kibum wouldn’t–couldn’t have stopped him. At least Sungmin thought things out and considered the consequences.
Kibum, however, was a little impulsive to a fault. It brings him both luck and danger to his occupation.
Right now, Sungmin probably wondered the possibility between them. His disgruntled expression throughout the day showed he knew they’d most likely end their relationship the second he’s returned to his mother. Attempting advances were meaningless.
The possibility’s also crossed his mind, no matter how much he willed it.
Kibum snaked his arm around Sungmin’s waist to better keep him in place during the remainder of the ride.
They had just hours left.
With that in mind, Kibum’s grip is secure around him. And against all better judgement, Kibum thinks back to their first near kiss and closed his eyes.
With Sungmin so deep in his sleep, he could probably attempt… he could probably make it right.
Even if just on a whim, Kibum probably shouldn’t have. Yet he finds he doesn’t regret it at all, and tenderly brushed his lips against Sungmin’s cold cheek.
When the train ride ends Kibum knew then as he pulled back, settling back into his seat, that he now had his own decision to make.
She folded the clothes one by one as she takes them from the table to the container beside her.
“She doesn’t look that different.” Sungmin noted out loud, staring at his mother within the laundromat.
Kibum glanced from the window to Sungmin who stared intently in her direction. He takes a deep breath and takes a few steps. When he sees a young girl by her side, tugging at her elbow, Sungmin hesitates.
“She may have two kids now, but it doesn’t mean she replaced you.” Kibum uttered.
Kibum sees he isn’t lying. Sungmin edged closer to Kibum until they’re nearly face to face.
“I don’t know what to say,” Sungmin mumbled.
Kibum chuckled endearingly, “I don’t think you’ll have to say much. And it looks like you’ll need to decide soon, she’s about to leave.”
Sungmin snapped back at the laundromat and bites his lip. He is about ready to run right across, but he paused as he looks back at Kibum.
“Then what do I do after? Do I forget you ever help me? Do I write a note now and then like they do?”
The wind whipped across the pair, and Kibum gave a gentle smile. “I’m not meant to settle in.” Kibum answered professionally.
Sungmin looked at him and then bowed once. Kibum parted his lips but Sungmin turned away. The younger man doesn’t plead with him, he doesn’t ask him of anything, and when he walks across the street he tries not to look back.
Through the window, he sees Sungmin slip inside. And when he first approaches his mother, the woman looked puzzled at first, but as Sungmin continued speaking with her, her eyes scrunch tightly together and she covers her face with her hands.
Then she embraces her son tightly, and he holds her back. Kibum’s eyes defeat his stoic look, and he admires warmly at the scene.
Sungmin was soon outside the laundromat and his eyes scan for him in the street. Sungmin looked concerned then crossed, settled with disappointment that he hides once his mother meets with him outside, with his siblings in tow.
“What’s bothering you?” Yesung asked in French, picking up a few items from the store as he observed his associate he picked up.
Kibum sighed, and his good mood is nearly entirely gone. He tapped the pay phone and finally hung up. He scowled,
“That guy would be surprised at how hard it is to make a phone call.”
“That was all the change I carry until we reach France.”
Kibum nodded and returns to the car, the two head off.
Yesung arched an eyebrow. “You’re going back to South Korea? I thought you were leaving there when you had the chance.”
“I have to,” Kibum affirmed then smiled grimly, “Unless fate decides otherwise.”
Kibum’s in handcuffs, again.
He groaned as he kept his head low, sitting on the metal chair of the office within the airport. He thought with the measures he took, that flying in would be little hassle. The moment he departed his flight, he was taken in by airport security. He just arrived to South Korea but he was already in trouble.
“Am I that much of a threat that I need both of you to keep watch of me?” Kibum asked, looking beneath the brim of his hat. They remained silent. Kibum twisted his lips, “How about some water? Or even better, a phone call?”
Still nothing. Kibum exhaled, “Can’t you at least tell me what I’m being charged for? At least give me a hint.”
Kibum looked up as Sungmin walked in, dressed in a pressed black suit and phone on hand. Kibum sees the other dismiss the two guards from the room, leaving only the two of them.
This wasn’t what he meant by the hands of fate.
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5