“They should be here in five minutes – Dad just texted.” Yura mumbles as she slides on the seat next to him. “Afternoon,” She greets cheerfully before grabbing the white clothes and spreading it over her lap after giving him a quick hug.
“Afternoon,” He replies back dully. He picks up the menu a server dropped off before Yura arrived.
It’s silent for a moment before Yura decides to break it, “You’ll be good to them, won’t you?” She continues, “They’re excited to learn about the baby and you.”
He doesn’t get a chance to respond – not as though he was even planning to – when he sees his parents. The lump in his throat is hard to get rid of; he stands out of respect and bows respectfully. He waits for them to settle down and avoids his mother’s watery eyes as she tries her hardest to catch his eyes.
“Afternoon,” He says drily before his mother can start. He reaches out into his pocket and pulls out his phone – his parents are saying something to him but he tunes them out as he looks for the few pictures he has. “Here’s your grandson.” He holds the phone out to his father who eagerly takes it from him. He watches how their faces brighten and immediately looks away when they look from the device.
“Thank you,” His mother says softly, “For sharing this with us.”
They’re both deprived of sleep after the baby’s born – or forcibly removed earlier via caseation for being an impatient one– Jongin a whole lot more than he is. Seungsu is a fussy baby – grunts and is a grouchy little thing during the night and is almost up every three hours demanding to be fed and has a bad habit of sleeping during the day although Jongin wakes him after two hours for his bottle.
Sometimes Chanyeol sleeps through his cries and only wakes when Jongin shakes him awake to make formula or hold Seungsu – he obviously does a terrible job at getting the formula correctly because Jongin always has remake it for Seungsu to drink.
Chanyeol thinks Seungsu secretly hates him already.
It’s hard – it’s so ing hard and everything is out his energy dry. Jongin handles Seungsu better than he does – feeds him on time and can calm him down a lot faster than he can.
He knows Seungsu knows Jongin’s touch better than his because he’d been hesitant to carrying Seungsu after they returned home with him and it’s all got something to do with instinct, he thinks.
He never misses the frustration or infuriation that crosses on Jongin’s feature when Seungsu won’t stop crying or refuses to on his bottle.
He wishes he can help more but the only thing he thinks he’s good at in all this is changing dirty diapers or tidying up the apartment when he returns from work or before he leaves for work and getting on Jongin’s nerves unintentionally.
“You alright?” He whispers one night when they lay awake – Seungsu is behaving and has been asleep in his crib for 15 minutes with his small mouth around his red pacifier. The crib has been dragged closer to the bed so Jongin won’t have to get up every time their alarm decides to go off.
“No.” Jongin replies just as silently, “I think he’s got a cold, Chanyeol,” He says shakily and Chanyeol of feels ty because he hasn’t noticed the signs – then again, he’s never around Seungsu all the time.
“We’ll give Luhan a call tomorrow,” He looks over at the digital clock reading 02:39PM. “It’s late and you should get some sleep–”
“What if he–”
“He won’t. He’ll be fine because he’s proving to be as stubborn as I am.” His heart feels with warmth when Jongin lets out a laugh. Chanyeol blindly reaches out for his hand and holds it, giving it a gentle squeeze. As much as he wants to hug Jongin, he doesn’t want to risk adding any press on his abdomen.
Jongin’s breathe even outs and Chanyeol waits for a good ten minutes to make sure he’s actually sleeping before he rolls out of bed. He round the bed to the crib and releases the brakes before carefully wheeling it out of the bedroom and into the living room.
Jongin needs all the rest he can get
He settles on the couch and looks at Seungsu to make sure he’s still asleep covered in his heaviest blue blanket. He rests his head on the armrest and turns on the television because he isn’t as sleeping and he really doesn’t wish to risk sleeping through Seungsu’s murderous cries.
He hopes they stay as they are – on good terms with each other but he knows it won’t last because their only tolerating each other. And their relationship is barely above the rocks.
His routine becomes frustratingly repetitive: he wakes up before Jongin (and thank , before Seungsu), washes up and puts on his attire before leaving the bedroom. He does the dishes – it’s the absolute worst trying to get the formula bottles sparkling clean – and some days he tosses clothes in the washing machine and hopes that Jongin will take them out by the time he’s back from work.
There are days when Chanyeol is frustrated with some of his clients; they talk too much when they enter the taxi, demand a lot from him when his job is only to get them to their destination. Customers are always right according to his boss – he learns to watch his tongue and doesn’t say shut the up as carelessly as he used to before.
He sometimes makes the mistake of bringing his frustration home and it's always a bad combination with Seungsu's constant wailing, his desire to just fall asleep and Jongin's lack of interest to ask him his day has been.
He makes the mistake of acting out on his frustration without thinking of later consequences because he’s just so tired of everything. "What do you do all day?" He asks as soon as he's out of his ing tight suit and in some relaxed sweats and one of his old loose t-shirts when baggy clothing was in style.
Jongin doesn't spare him a glance from where he sits. He keeps his focus on Seungsu who is too occupied with his small mouth ling on his bottle to cry. "You're looking at it." Jongin finally replies plainly.
Chanyeol decides to drop the argument before it even begins.
It’s not surprising that they haven’t actually sat down and had a conversation since Jongin came back. He admits they never see each other as often as he’d like. Seungsu is a one week and three days old and his annoying sleeping habits – sleeping habits that show no sign of getting better and the bag eyes under Jongin’s eyes are darker.
Chanyeol returns from work often after eight, heads straight for their bed to relax his sore muscles and because his is flatter from sitting too long driving people around. Jongin sort of feels like his old university roommate – they rarely ever saw each other and when they did, they barely acknowledged each other’s presence.
He falls asleep without Jongin by his side and is only comforted by the sound of Seungsu making soft noises in his sleep.
When he wakes, he almost rolls over to drop on the floor – wishing to kiss the floor because it’s a Saturday and he has no work – he wishes to sleep in a little longer but finds that he cannot because Jongin isn’t in bed with him. The coldness on the empty space tells him Jongin never bothered to crawl into bed.
Chanyeol lazily lifts his head from his pillow and stares at the crib – Seungsu looks like a burrito in his blue blanket and in a different set of clothes than he wore to sleep the night before. He probably made a mess of himself and Jongin had to change his clothes.
He picks himself up and drags his feet to the door. He steps out of the bedroom, leaving the door ajar and stalking sluggishly over to Jongin lying on the couch.
“You should be in bed,” Chanyeol utters looking from Jongin to the clock on the wall. It’s too ing early for him to be awake on a Saturday.
“Could say the same for you,” Jongin sits up and Chanyeol takes that as an invitation to sit next to him. He looks at the television and immediately scowls when Jongin turns it off.
He runs his hand over his face and groans, “We have to talk,” He mumbles behind his hand before turning to stare at Jongin who is looking right at him with unreadable expression.
“Jesus,” Jongin’s voice indicated that he was far from interested. “Is this about me not doing much by your standards?” He flinches a little at the coldness in the latter’s tone and grimaces because Jongin’s questions makes him feel like a prick.
Chanyeol sighs lightly and wants to smack himself in the face for being insensitive the other day. He turns to gawk at his hands when Jongin sends him a disapproving frown. He sighs in guilt this time and reaches out; he places his hand over Jongin’s own and gives it a reassuring rub as he catches his eyes. “We need to talk about where we go from here. A year wasted waiting for Seungsu without thinking of anything past his birth and now that he’s here – what happens now?”
“I want to go back to college.” Jongin blurts out so quickly it leaves Chanyeol blinks even though he knows that’ll always be Jongin’s first answer, “I can’t do that if I have to take care of Seungsu all day for the next eight months–”
“For the next year.” He corrects and wants to hit himself when Jongin pulls away from his touch, “Eight months is too young for kindergarten,” He tries to reason and all he gets in response is an irritated look and nothing else. “Even you know it’s not fair – he’ll be too young–”
“I can’t be stuck in here for a year and you looking down on me because I’m not doing enough!” Jongin’s outbursts a common these past few weeks so he isn’t surprised in the slightest.
“I never meant for it to come out –” He tries and gets shot down.
“He’s driving me crazy – I need to go out but I can’t because I’m so afraid I might drop him. I can’t stand for more than 10 minutes because my ing abdomen hurts every time I move,” He breathes out with a huff and Chanyeol is quick to hold his arm when he tries to stand up.
“No,” He starts; “You’re not walking away,” He deadpans and Jongin settles but keeps his mouth shut and Chanyeol doesn’t press him. “I’m sorry – for saying you aren’t doing much.”
“I was frustrated with work and I took it out on you,” He groans, “I swear, Jongin, I didn’t ing mean it.”
“I feel guilty,” Chanyeol pauses from where he’s standing in front of the bathroom mirror with his hands on his tie. He blinks at his reflection before his eyes flick to Jongin sitting on the toilet with the lid down.
“Why?” He asks, resuming back to his tie and straightening his dress shirt.
“Seungsu.” He whispers, “I can’t do this.”
And Chanyeol has a feeling he will not like where this is going. He shuts his eyes and exhales heavily. He eyes Jongin when he opens his eyes and sees the younger man – it’s then he notices Jongin is neatly dressed and looking sharp.
Dread feels in his gut and fear grips him to the point of suffocation. “Where are you going?” He almost stutters but catches himself. He turns back to fixing his collar – trying to brush away the fear he’s feeling and hoping it doesn’t show on his face.
“Stay home today…” Jongin trails off and continues before Chanyeol can get a word in, “Your birthday is the day after tomorrow,” He says abruptly and Chanyeol blinks because he’s ing forgotten his own big day. He’s not proud about turning 24 years old and looking where he is still a huge punch to his gut.
“Yeah, I know. Why?” He lies as he buttons his dress shirt as he keeps a calculating on Jongin.
“I want to get you something,” Jongin mumbles and Chanyeol pauses for a second. He turns around, steps over to Jongin and squats to face Jongin properly.
“You don’t have to.” And he means it but Jongin shakes his head. Chanyeol doesn’t know why his insides are tying into knots – maybe because he really cannot skip work without his boss throwing a huge fit or maybe because Jongin is avoiding his stare.
“Just stay with Seungsu until I get back, alright?” The feel of soft lips almost his silence him and the words he had on his tongue die. His hands gently grab the back of Jongin’s neck and he pulls him forward to kiss him better.
He’s a bit dazed when they pull apart – he takes his time watches as Jongin gathers himself. “Don’t be out too long.” He swallows thickly and straightens his posture when he stands. He steps side to let Jongin pass – he almost misses the hesitation and doesn’t get a chance to question it because Jongin hugs him.
Jongin ing clings to him so tightly and Chanyeol is slow to respond to the hug because he’s already pulling away. He opens his mouth to ask what the is going on with you but Jongin’s already out of the bathroom.
He stands there dumbfounded until he hears the front door slamming – he’s out of the bathroom without much thought and pauses in the living room staring at the shut front door. The closer he gets to it, the more his heart clenches and by the time he has his hand around the door knob.
Seungsu’s sharp cry is what stops him from going after Jongin.
I should be updating a load faster than this but like I’m lazy /def not proud