He quits dog walking and lawing mowing the next week after Yura reaches out to him. He meets her ex-husband and goes through an awful long hours of the man interviewing him – felt more like the man was out to get him or maybe Chanyeol is just used to thinking everyone hates him.
He's graced with car keys to a neat car – a bunch of rules he doesn’t bother to read written on the contract he signs– and he receives a time plan of all the obnoxious clients he'll have to pick up from airports, hotels and the like for his first week and a phone only his new coworkers and clients can contact him on.
He doesn't complain about it because it's the best he's got without a degree in anything and because beggars can't be choosers.
Jongin is 37 weeks and Chanyeol finally works up the courage to call him– and his hands are trembling and heart thumping because hearing Jongin's voice does something to him and the latter hasn't even spoken yet. He feels young and stupid– his insides feel good.
He waits, eyes darting around their bedroom before he lays back and stares at the ceiling. He has his phone tightly pressed against his ear– closely listening to the voice coming from the other line and the soft breathing.
"Hey," Jongin's voice comes shortly and Chanyeol feels a sparkle of life. Like the void he has had for the time Jongin has been apart fills up a notch and this time his whole being feels good.
He takes a second, "Hey," And then it's silent – his heart drops a little because he has called and he doesn't have an idea of what to say. He wants to hearing Jongin's voice – not over the phone – and Jesus, he wants to see him.
Chanyeol keeps his silence for a while before he says it: I’ve got a new job – and Jongin’s gleefully laugh has his heart swallowing with indescribable warmth. He gets a congratulations and he thinks it’s the best thing he’s heard all year.
But the urge to see and hold him is too strong. He wants to hold him – he misses him so much that he feels as though it’s emotionally impossible to deny it any longer, "I want to see you," He whispers ever so quietly and feels stupid for it, a little afraid of rejection.
Jongin is silent on the other end and for moment Chanyeol thinks he ended the call, "Okay." His heart race picks up and flutters at answer.
It's Luhan who allows him to come in when he knocks after minutes of pacing around the front door– he holds himself for admiring how homey the house looks. The older man nods in greeting – and congratulates him cheerily – and Chanyeol's too distracted to respond when his eyes settles on Jiali's tiny frame hugging Luhan's right leg.
"Hey," He isn’t sure who he's directing it to and whatever he's about to say lies dead on his tongue when suddenly all he can ing see is Jongin.
It takes him a millisecond to elope him into a bone crushing hug and his hard middle pressing against him only makes him want to hold Jongin tighter, but he doesn’t– in fear of hurting him. He has misses the feeling of having his arms around him, has missed how good Jongin smells and Jesus – his warm hugs.
His heart swells as he buries his nose in Jongin's hair and just breathes in – he vaguely hears Luhan announcing that he and Jiali were going to step out for a bit to give them some time. Chanyeol tries to pull away but stops when Jongin's tight grip the back of his jacket, preventing him from doing anything.
He manages to pull away and he immediately cups Jongin’s face in his hands– ignoring the younger's damp eyes, he presses his lips against his forehead. "Jongin," He starts shakily and takes a ridiculous step backwards – stupidly wanting to see if Jongin's still in one piece.
"What?" Jongin asks with a smile this time and holds his wrist, Chanyeol lets himself be dragged around and the only thing he focuses is just how warm Jongin's fingers are on his skin.
"Guestroom," Jongin says as he pushes the door open and drags Chanyeol to the bed. "Standing hurts my feet," He mumbles.
And for a moment Chanyeol feels stupid – because all he had to do was just ask to see Jongin.
They lay down on the guest bed and the whole room smells of Jongin – his pillows have the strongest sent and had Jongin not been lying across from him – he'd bury his nose in the pillows.
"How are you?" He asks, feeling stupid because his insides feel faint – the good kind of faint, the kind that he wants to feel and hasn't felt for a while.
"I missed you," Jongin says so softly and carefully.
"Come home," He blurts out childlike. He wants Jongin – as satisfying as seeing him right now is, after unbearable weeks; it’s not enough and he knows he'll be miserable when he returns home without him by his side.
"Not today." The answer is expected but it doesn't fail to clench around his heart.
"I'm trying," He murmurs, he can barely hear himself as he just lets himself take in how beautiful Jongin looks beside him. He has been an idiot and there's no escaping that.
"And you're doing good, no?" He closes his eyes when Jongin begins running his fingers through his hair. "I'm proud of you."
"Then come home." Chanyeol lets his hand rest on Jongin's hip, trading carefully as he rubs circles on it before his hand trails and settles and the hardness of Jongin's too large bump under his tight shirt.
"You've gotten bigger," He mumbles, almost in awe. And he surprises himself because he's noticed the change in not only how much bigger Jongin's gotten but how health he looks.
"Thanks for stating the obvious." But there's a smile on his face and Chanyeol has to stop himself from kissing it away – he has no clue where they stand – he knows Jongin letting him touch him isn't a big deal but kissing might be stepping his boundaries because they may or may not be together.
It’s Jongin who leans forward and presses a kiss on the tip of his nose, “Congratulations on the job.” He pulls back and Chanyeol blinks.
"Are we...?" Are we together? He cuts himself short and chuckles nervously to cover up how dumb he feels. The flutter under his palm doesn't startle him.
"We are." Jongin answers firmly– with the confidence he hasn't seen in while and wishes he had.
He returns to his apartment without Jongin by his side and sleep doesn’t come as quickly.
His first day as a taxi driver goes horribly wrong – he gets in a yelling match too many times with an older lady – he realizes he doesn't have enough patients for stupidity that isn't his and that most of his clients are arseholes.
The good part about it is that he gets them to their destination on time and the bad part is that he's going to have to see them again – they also threaten to about his behavior to his new boss.
Yura's ex-husband is like most of his previous bosses – nosy and infuriating – always in the lurking shadows and trying to find something to wrong him for – and on his first day, too. He doesn't even question why the divorce happened. He tries not to be mean because the guy is doing him a favor.
It becomes obvious that his hours in the taxi and time in the gas station will be impossible to handle. He makes what feels the toughest decision in his life and resigns – his former boss even looks a little dejected when he hands in the letter.
Jongdae promises to drop by at his apartment – even though he looks a little betrayed at not being told– and Chanyeol is grateful because he doesn't want their friendship to be over.
He tries – not hard enough – to be in contact with his sister but old habits are difficult to hold at bay. She doesn’t pressure him to see their parents even though he knows for a fact that she’s already told them about him.
She hasn’t pestered him about Jongin and Chanyeol thinks she’s very well aware of their relationship without him having to say anything – maybe the rejection is written all over his face no matter how much he tries to not let it show.
“Do you want to be there – with me?” Chanyeol looks from their intertwined fingers and his eyes trail over to look at Jongin. The smile of the latter’s face is faint as he stares back at him and Chanyeol wonders what is running through his head, “Only if you want to,” He adds, his voice is softer.
“…if you promise to come home.” after you get discharged from the hospital– he knows for a fact that he sounds childish. He even forgets that they’re in the waiting room– Jongin’s appointment ended a good five minutes ago and they’re waiting to receive the recent ultrasound prints from the nurse.
“Chanyeol,” Jongin starts and Chanyeol keeps him from continuing when he shakes his head.
“You don’t have to give me an answer now.” He whispers, leans forward and brushes his lips against him before giving him a peck and moving away. “Think about it?” The squeeze around his heart is impossible to ignore when Jongin hesitates and turns away from him.