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Really Hate You - IU
Naeun sat beside Sehun in silence. The only sound that echoed in the woods was the quiet rush of the water from the water fountain behind them.
Naeun leaned over a bit to peer at Sehun’s face. Sure, he was handsome, but even more so in the moonlight.
Sehun turned to look at her as she gently smiled. He softened a bit and squeezed her hand as he let in a shaky breath.
“Hide and Seek… was a game that I played a lot as a child.” He blew his brown bangs out of his face and lightly smiled. “But I didn’t play it alone, obviously. I mostly played it with Luhan hyung.”
Naeun racked her brain for the name. *Luhan…?*
“Our other half, EXO-M, consists of their leader, Kris hyung, Luhan, Xiumin, Lay (or Yixing), Chen, and their maknae, Tao.” Sehun continued, pointing at each of their faces. “Everyone in EXO-M except Xiumin hyung and Chen hyung are Chinese.”
“EXO-M…” Naeun murmured as Sehun nodded. “He’s in EXO-M?”
“Yes.” Sehun’s voice was getting dangerously low. He tried to speak as little as possible so that he didn’t end up quivering. “Luhan hyung and I were close. We were closer than anyone in EXO. Although he was centuries older than me, he felt like he was my age.”
Naeun softened as she looked at the sky and continued to listen. *…Friend, huh?*
Sehun pursed his lips, “But one day… Everything went wrong.”
“What do you mean?” Naeun questioned cautiously. She didn’t want to reopen any painful wounds.
“Before I was banished with the other hyungs into EXO Planet, me and Luhan hyung played a round of Hide and Seek. We were still quite young then. Probably in our preteen years.” Sehun attempted a smile, but failed. “Luhan hyung was the seeker, and I was in hiding, but then… I…I…”
Naeun immediately turned around when Sehun choked on his words. Hasty tears welled up in his eyes and he couldn’t breathe.
“Sehun…” Naeun murmured, almost sympathetically.
Sehun struggled to get his words out without breaking down, “N-Naeun, I—You can’t imagine how guilty I felt when I disappeared during the game. You just can’t possibly imagine—“
Naeun couldn’t do anything to stop him. Sehun was just blubbering out words that he could muster. It was heartbreaking.
“A-All the other hyungs assured me that Luhan hyung would understand. That he was a very understanding person. But to me—“ Sehun choked up and didn’t bother to wipe away the tears that sprouted up quickly, “To me, he was more than just an understanding friend… To me, he—To me—“ He couldn’t bear to finish his sentence and finally sobbed.
“Damn it…” Was all Naeun could hear him whisper.
Naeun felt herself being shaken up as well. Sehun just looked so helpless and lonely. He reminded her of a lone wolf, out in the moonlight, with no one to understand him.
“Sehun.” Naeun turned him around and captured him in a hug.
The maknae tried to hold it all in, but Naeun’s warm, motherly touch just made him miss his best friend even more. Naeun, who knew nothing of companionship or friendship, made him feel… comforted and warm inside.
Sehun wrapped his arms around Naeun’s back as she held him around his waist.
“Sehun…” Naeun quietly murmured in his ear, making chills run down him. “I know you’re thinking that no one understands you.”
The boy kept quiet. It was true. No one seemed to understand the guilt and longing to explain himself to his friend—his hyung.
“But in truth… Look around.” She paused, the corners of her lips curving upwards slightly, “You’re not alone. Don’t you think that Suho might miss EXO-M’s leader? Or Luhan might miss you too? Don’t you think that everyone else misses their friends from EXO-M as well?”
There was a moment of silence, but she took that as a yes.
“See? It’s not only you that misses the others. You’ll get to see them soon. And I’m sure that if your Luhan hyung is a true friend, he’ll understand you no matter what. It wasn’t your fault to begin with.” Naeun murmured wisely.
Sehun closed his eyes and started to believe every word Naeun uttered. He rested his head on her shoulder, “…You’re right.”
Naeun pulled away and held him out at arm’s length, “Are you alright now?”
Sehun seemed to have calmed down by her words and genuinely smiled. His eyes curved into his crescent moon shapes, “Mmhm.”
Naeun smiled back, “Good.” She stood up and dusted herself off, “Should we go back? Everyone must be worried.”
Sehun nodded, but when she was about to leave, he grabbed her wrist. She turned around in surprise, “What—“
“I forgot to tell you…” Sehun smiled again, his pink lips curved into a friendly grin. He ran a few strands of Naeun’s hair through his fingertips and pressed his lips against it like a prince, “Thank you for the talk.”
Naeun felt awkward and started to blush, “I—wha—“
Sehun pulled his lips away and let go of the strands of hair. They fell back into place, “…And for finding me, too.”
Naeun was tongue-tied. *How can such an innocent looking guy be so smooth?!*
Sehun chuckled as he walked ahead of you with his hands in his pockets, “Hurry, Naeunnie. You said the hyungs were waiting~”
Naeun snapped out of her daze and frowned as she ran up to him, “You tease!”
Sehun smiled and looked up to the sky, seeing the millions of stars and the gleaming moon overhead. He knew inside that these two moons on different worlds would be the same. One full moon. He earnestly hoped that his favourite hyung was looking at the same moon right now as well.
*I’ll get to see you soon, won’t I, Luhan hyung?* Sehun thought to himself and looked back at Naeun. *Until then, I’ll try my best to make a new friend… or maybe something more.*
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