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Severely - FT Island
Naeun stared into Chanyeol’s glassy and gaunt eyes. His coloured shade of skin was unusually pale—almost green. His bright smile was replaced with a thin, pathetic attempt to grin, and his happy aura was melancholy.
Everything about him at that moment was heartbreaking.
“Chanyeol…” Naeun said in a sympathetic tone of voice.
Chanyeol feebly turned his gaze to the floor, “…I’m okay, Naeun. It’s all in the past anyway. I’m fine…”
“No, you’re not.”
Chanyeol froze and turned to meet gazes with her. His heart paused for a second. His face turned rigid.
“You’re not fine, Chanyeol. Although you might delude other people into thinking that you are, you can’t fool me.” Naeun glanced at him with a firm stare and gave him an unreadable expression. She sighed, “The truth is, you’re not fine. I can clearly see it. You’re hurting inside, Yeol, and I don’t want you to endure the pain by yourself. Everyone here cares about you. You’re our friend. You’re… my friend. So don’t hide it any longer. If you want to cry, then cry! Don’t hold anything back, so you don’t regret it later…”
Chanyeol just gaped at her in silence.
Naeun raised her head to look at him, but then became instantly taken aback. Her expression softened and she held up a hand, “Chanyeol oppa…” She lightly brushed his cheek with her finger.
Chanyeol jolted at the contact. It was warm and made him feel alive inside. *This is the effect that she has on Baekhyun… No—not just Baekhyun… On everyone…*
He hastily brushed his hand over his eyelids and was stunned to see drops of tears on his skin. No matter what he did, the tears kept pouring out of his eyes. His stomach keeled over and he felt like he was going to explode with tears.
Finally, Chanyeol cupped his face with his hands and let out one, broken sob. A pair of arms instantly wound around him, embracing him tightly. A friendly embrace… A motherly embrace.
*Chanyeol oppa…* Naeun felt guilt-ridden when she heard her usually happy friend’s loud cries. The heartbreaking sound made her want to cry with him. Tears welled up in her eyes, but she knew she had to stay strong for Chanyeol, at least. She tried her best to hold them back.
“Mina… Mina…” He called in broken voices repeatedly, “I miss you… I love you…”
Naeun could taste copper in as she lowered Chanyeol’s head into her shoulder. She gently rubbed his back in soothing circles. *Poor Chanyeol oppa… I wish they could at least meet once again…* Her lip trembled but she forced herself not to cry.
All Chanyeol could think about was that he had let Mina down. His promise to be there for her was null and void. The thought of Mina hating him because of that drove him crazy.
“Park Chanyeol… I hate you.”
“I don’t want to see your face ever again.”
“It’s a good thing you died.”
No… The Mina he knew—his Mina—would never say such a thing. Not to him...
Chanyeol felt sick with himself. He didn’t mean for this talk with Naeun to become a sob story of his own dark past, but he couldn’t help it. Naeun had been so supportive of him and wasn’t disgusted at all with him. He was thankful for her kind encouragement and consolation.
He shivered at the thought of his beloved Mina saying those words. He hoped it wouldn’t happen.
After what seemed like hours, Chanyeol had finally calmed down. He looked sheepish and disappointed with dried trails of tears on his cheeks.
*You cried in front of a girl. Have you no shame, Park Chanyeol?* He closed his eyes and tried to shut up his conscience.
“Are you… alright, now?” Naeun fretfully glanced at him. Chanyeol shyly and nodded, “Thank you… you know… for letting me say what I needed to say.”
Naeun looked up at the sky and let out a breath, “Sometimes, it’s good to let out your feelings once in a while, so that it doesn’t become all cooped up inside of you.”
Chanyeol half-heartedly grinned, “I’ll be sure to make a mental note of that.” The two chuckled. A chilly breeze made the two let out hot puffs of air.
“But the reason why I came to tell you this…” He trailed off for a second before finding the right words to express himself, “Isn’t because I wanted to start my own pity party.” He smirked. Naeun quietly listened.
“Naeun… I… I don’t want you to go through what I went through.” Chanyeol gazed at her with sad but wise eyes. Knowing eyes.
“Although you may already know this, we’ve become attached to you in one way or another. You’re the most peculiar human I’ve ever met. You weren’t hysterical about meeting angels for the first time, and you actually believed us. That’s pretty amazing, since half of the human population is ignorant. They refuse to believe we exist. Even if they did see us, they would deceive themselves and trick them into thinking that they didn’t see a thing. That’s the problem with humans. They don’t have the courage or conscience to believe.” Chanyeol explained slowly.
Naeun let this register in her mind, but didn’t question him.
“It seems like just yesterday, you woke up in Baekhyun’s bed, but in reality, it’s been a while since you’ve been here. Many months, Naeun. I want you to know that we all care for you. That includes both halves of EXO. We all think of you as an important and irreplaceable friend. You’ve become part of our group.” Chanyeol chuckled and winked, “And if you want to choose a certain someone as your life-long partner, I won’t disagree.”
Naeun flushed red, “C-Chanyeol oppa…”
Chanyeol chuckled as his mouth curved upwards into that amazing, playful grin. He gently grabbed her hands and held them in his big, warm ones.
“So please Naeun,” He searched her eyes intently, “Please listen to my advice. Take advantage of the time you have now. Don’t stall your confession for too long. I don’t want you to regret it, like I did.” He turned somber.
Naeun gulped. She was nervous about telling her feelings to the one she loved, but she also didn’t want to never tell him at all. Shortly after, Naeun found herself nodding to Chanyeol’s plea.
Chanyeol softened, “Thank you, Naeun. You’re making the right decision. You really are.” *For you and my best friend, both.*
He stood up and rubbed his eyes for any traces of crying. Slowly, he extended his hand towards Naeun, “The others are probably looking for us. We should go.”
Naeun un-hesitantly grabbed a hold of his hand, pulled herself up and smiled, nodding.
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