Summary: Sometimes Sehun can be too stubborn and too blind to admit that maybe the things he wants doesn’t always work out that way. Somewhat Butterfly Effect!AU or Run Lola Run inspired
A/N: i’ve only ever written crack i don’t know what this is. emotion?? heartbreak?? physical exercise?? what?? is that what i was aiming for??
It’s May 14th and Sehun is finally ready.
After much careful planning and crying over the circled date on his calendar. Mocking him since White Day, last month. Sehun thinks he is ready. He woke up at seven on a Saturday just to do his hair. He couldn’t be anything more than ready. After a split second of hesitation at the door he decides. Yeah, he is ready.
Strolling with a newly found air of confidence he walks right into the florist. It’s busy. Of course it is, it’s rose day. He chose the date of the unofficial couple holiday for a reason. After much pining for days on end (more like three years but he still refuses to admit that).
He’s confessing to the angel who floated down from heaven and into Sehun’s life, bright and handsome Luhan hyung. It was love at first sight, Sehun proclaims to his best friends Jongin and Yixing hyung (who snort and laugh at him). After his encounter with Luhan after Sehun’s mother had shoved him into the hairdresser where the latter worked at.
Who knew having his head grow too big to have glass bowl shoved onto the top of it, would bless him with the honour of seeing the ethereal beauty every month, for the next three years?
When the long line in front of him finally dwindled down and Sehun was at the counter Sehun asked the florist for a single red rose. He thinks that the guy might have wanted to roll his eyes at the request he’s most likely heard a million times just in this morning.
Clichéd as it is Sehun wanted to stick to tradition. He thinks that maybe Luhan hyung would like that. Well, he hopes so at least. He pays for the rose and leaves the florist. Carefully examining the petals for any imperfections, because gifting something imperfect to a perfect person would be somewhat of an insult. He finds none and instead ends up seeing the piece of card attached that read “to give to the one you love” Sehun scoffs at how generic it sounded.
He calls up Yixing, still standing in front of the window of the florist. The elder starts with a “hello?” but gets cut off by an impatient “hyung! Reserve me a table for two,”
“What? Does Sehun-ah have a date?” Yixing’s accented voice comes through the speaker followed by a chuckle.
“Yixing hyung,” Sehun whines, “it’s not funny, can you reserve me the table or not?”
“Okay, okay I’ll reserve a table for my little Sehunnie and his date,” Yixing coos.
Sehun’s neck starts to heat up and he resists the urge to stomp his foot like the child he is not anymore.
“Who is your date anyway? I thought I was your favourite hyung who you told all your crushes to,”
“Well, I haven’t exactly asked yet…” Yixing tsks at this, “but its Luhan hyung.”
“What? Luhan? Hairdresser from next door Luhan? No you can’t-”
“What do you mean I can’t?” Sehun frowns anger starting to creep up on him. He never did like getting told what he can and can’t do. “Look Yixing-hyung if you’re just going to tell me he’s too old for me or something just save it. I really like him okay, I thought you would be understanding.” Sehun hangs up and shoves his phone in his pocket refusing to let guilt stop him from confessing to Luhan.
He knew he was being childish and that Yixing didn’t deserve that. But Sehun is seventeen! Luhan hyung is only twenty one, a four year gap isn’t that big.
Making his way back to his apartment, mood dampened but still determined. He realises that Jongin borrowed his bicycle yesterday and won’t return it until tomorrow. He stops and curses out loud earning himself shocked and judging looks from passer-bys.
It’s a single glance at the time on his phone that he won’t have to time to get back home anyway. Taking a taxi wasn’t an option either when he needed to save his money for dinner. It’s on impulse that he decided to just leg it. The hairdresser and restaurant were only fifteen minutes away he could make it on time just as Luhan’s shift ended.
Sehun runs. He makes his way across the road ignoring the honks of cars and manoeuvres his way in front of the bus stop where he makes his first mistake. There’s an undeniable squelch as his nice white sneakers sink into the mud of the grassy lining of the walk way.
He groans. They had been a birthday gift from Yixing last year and now they're ruined. He fights down the guilt as the thought of the elder flashed through his mind. But it only ends with him realising that he’d never gotten angry at the elder not once since he’d met him. And he’s known Yixing since middle school.
But Sehun feels the rose in his hand and remembers what he was doing. Confessing to the man of his dreams. It was now or never. He couldn’t throw a month of planning out of the window just like that. He places the rose into the front pocket of his button-up and scrapes the mud off his shoe on the sidewalk. Successfully clearing any mud that could potentially cause him to slip he starts to run again.
He thanks every god on earth that the path was clear of people and anymore mud as he makes his way down it. He stops at the end of it. Gives a glance to each side and crosses the road.
He coughs at the fumes a motorcycle that just made a right turn gives off as he jogs past behind it. Sehun goes the same way as the motorcycle, somewhat irritated. He never liked the smell of petrol but it was unavoidable in any city with motor vehicles so he had to deal (and ride a bicycle instead).
He steadies his pace as he grows nearer to the hairdresser. Closer to Luhan. He doesn’t want to be too winded when he talks to him. It was already hard enough to speak to the guy without stuttering on a good day.
You would think with the amount of times he’s seen him. Sehun would be able to carry a conversation without a rapidly thundering heart as he fell deeper into infatuation. He was able to do it eventually. It was good thing also. Sehun’s hair was starting fall out from the fourth dye job in a month after he had no more hair to cut without being bald.
Almost there. Sehun’s heart was already pounding with all running he had done. But the nervousness was starting to kick in. He could feel his palms start to sweat. And embarrassingly it was starting to pool at his underarms as well.
Yixing would be laughing his head off if he saw what Sehun looked like right now. Sehun bites his lip and shakes the thought off the elder boy away. He had a goal to focus on.
This was it. The path was growing shorter. Luhan was right there in the hairdressers waiting for him. He couldn’t back down now. He reaches the hairdresser and stops short when he sees that it’s already closed. Okay. Maybe not.
Sehun looks at the time again. Of course. The fifteen minute run had turned into half an hour by getting side-tracked. Sehun curses for the second time in an hour. He was too late.
All that work, and he’d just missed Luhan.
He hangs his head and turns to the restaurant just next door. Now he had to cancel his reservation. And apologise to Yixing hyung for getting mad. Then wallow in eternal guilt because it probably really hurt Yixing hyung’s feelings. And making Yixing hyung sad made him Sehun a grade A jerk.
Proceeding his apology Yixing would most likely accept it and not make Sehun feel bad about it at all because he’s such a good person and make Sehun feel worse.
He admits defeat but only barely. There is always tomorrow. Despite what Hyuna and Hyunseung say. He gets up one step of the restaurant entrance when he looks up. He sees Luhan hyung sitting at a table with another guy and his heart sinks straight down to his knees.
Denial rushes through him at first. But he can’t deny what he sees right in front of him. Sehun starts to choke up. He rips the rose out of his pocket and throws it onto the ground. Then he runs.
But doesn’t see the headlights of the oncoming car.
“Yixing hyung, what does love mean to you?” Sehun asks without thinking before scrunching up his nose at asking something so cheesy. He wouldn’t hear the end of it if Jongin heard those words come out Sehun’s mouth.
Yixing doesn’t tease him though, and Sehun is grateful. The elder only hums at the question, hands pausing over the keyboard in front of him.
“I don’t know Sehun-ah, there’s lots of kinds of love.” The elder answers honestly.
“Isn’t love when you care a lot about someone then? I really super super care about my mum and I love her, and dad and sometimes my brother when he’s not being annoying,” Sehun rambles, “and I care about Jongin but don’t tell him I said that because he’ll hold me to that for the rest of his life and I’m pretty sure Jongin is going to live for ever and ever because he told me that he picked a string on his name day celebration and you hyung I-”
Yixing chuckles at this, “I care about you too my Sehunnie.”
Sehun shoves his face into his pillow, embarrassed, only lifting it back up to listen when Yixing starts to softly play.
Sehun runs. He makes his way across the road ignoring the honks of cars and manoeuvres his way in front of the bus stop. He pauses for a brief second to put the rose into his front pocket afraid that it might slip from his hand. But at the same time aware that if he holds the rose too tight, the thorns might cut through the plastic and he’d end up with bloody hands and a few splinters. He speaks from experience.
He jumps over a puddle. Left-over evidence of the early morning rain he heard when he woke up this morning, battling with the sound of his shower.
Sehun was never fond of the rain. The mud that came with it only served purpose to make him slip and fall in front of that idiot Jongin, who would laugh hysterically and leave Yixing hyung to help him up, or ruin sneakers that his mum bought him the day before.
Yixing hyung. Sehun shakes his head as he runs looking like there was annoying bug swarming his face.
Luhan hyung, is who he needed to be thinking about right now. Luhan hyung who always greeted him kindly whenever Sehun walked in through the doors of the hairdresser. Never failing to make Sehun’s heart race.
Chanting Luhan hyung, Luhan hyung, must confess to Luhan hyung while he runs. Caught up in his internal self-motivating tactic he makes his second mistake. With forgetting to look both ways when he reached the end of the path only to keep running he causes a motorcyclist to yell out at him.
Sehun quickly comes to his senses. Looks over to the motorbike coming towards him at an alarming speed. He throws himself forward and dodges the bike that immediately breaks after passing him.
He manages to catch himself and land his fall on his arms with minimal impact. The motorcyclist slides the visor on his helmet to tell him to ‘watch where he’s going’ and Sehun quite shaken nods. He makes sure there are no more oncoming vehicles when he crosses the other half of the road.
He keeps going after a second of catching his breath. He keeps the reminder of looking both ways before he crosses in his mind. Yet he still runs undeterred. Faster to make up the lost time, but more cautiously.
He thinks he hears noises in the background coming from where he just came from. There is the distinct sound of sirens but Sehun can’t tell not with the slight ringing in his head and the pounding of his heart from the close encounter with what could’ve been a fatal accident. He uses the adrenaline pumping through him and determination to get to Luhan to speed up. The path was coming to an end.
He was almost there. He could see the sidewalk chalkboard sign that the hairdressers left out displaying the latest deals.
Colour and Cut for $13.5? Sehun feels ripped off for the $30 he spent last week on his new do. He shrugs it off and looks on the bright side. That sign outside meant Luhan was still here and Sehun was just in time.
Just as he stops at the entrance the door opens revealing Luhan who looked a bit frantic. Now Sehun would later deny that he totally did not misread Luhan’s franticness to being excited to see Sehun if anyone asked. But he totally did.
Stopping Luhan who completely passed Sehun in a rush to get out of the hair dresser, phone clutched in hand.
“Hey Luhan hyung,” Sehun says.
Luhan blinks at him as if just seeing him there and also seeming out of it, “oh. yeah. hi Sehun.”
Sehun frowns a little. Not the reaction he was hoping for. Or the greeting he usually expected. But oh well. Maybe Luhan was...feigning indifference? Yeah.
“Luhan hyung I was wondering…” Sehun makes a grab for the rose in the pocket only for his hand to meet with an empty pocket. He curses in his head. It must of fallen out when he jumped out of the way of that motorcycle.
“Sehun I have to go, I’ll see you later okay?” Luhan cuts in and starts hastily walking away.
Sehun stands there dumbfounded for a second. Did Luhan just leave when he was about to confess? He jogs after Luhan.
“Hyung! Wait! I have to tell you something!” He yells.
Luhan stops looking a bit ruffled and irritated but Sehun brushes it off
“Luhan hyung I-”
“Sehun now isn’t the time. I’m sorry I really have to get to the hospital. I just got a call from Zitao saying that my boyfriend got into a motorcycle accident.” Luhan starts to choke on the last few words that Sehun barely hears them. And when he understands, it all comes crashing down on him and makes him feel like crap.
He has a boyfriend. And it’s probably your fault that said boyfriend could potentially be dying or seriously injured right now. Way to go Oh Sehun.
“Luhan hyung. I- I’m so sorry.” Sehun whispers it so lowly that he could barely hear it himself. He starts to find it difficult to breathe. And he stands there gasping for air as the shock runs through him. He doesn’t even see Luhan as he gets into a taxi and leaves him without a second thought.
His head hurts from the lack of air from his brain like what Sehun would feel when he laughed to hard for too long. Sehun isn’t laughing now. His vision goes blurred. He loses feeling in his limbs. He collapses, head hitting the asphalt.
“Yixing hyung I want juk,” Sehun whines from where lay on the couch. The elder rolls his eyes at him from where he was in the kitchen and Sehun pretends to not see it.
“What makes you think I’m going to give you juk Sehun-ah?” Yixing questions pulling out a pot from the cupboard.
Sehun shivers and pulls the comforter tighter around him. He rolls onto his side and the sudden movement makes him a little dizzy, head already pounding. He pouts before cringing at how chapped his lips are from having to breathe through his mouth, after his nose started getting runny two hours ago. On top of this he still needed to break his fever.
“Yixing hyung will make Sehun juk because Sehun is sick and wants juk,” Sehun sniffles.
“And?” Yixing prompts even as he’s pulling out the rice and garlic.
Sehun who can no longer see what Yixing is doing in the kitchen frowns. And what? He’s sick and wants juk is that not reason enough?
“Because...Yixing hyung is the best?”
Sehun would roll his eyes if it wouldn’t be so painful to do it when they were already so dry.
“Ugh, I don’t know. Because Sehun loves Yixing hyung?”
Yixing laughs as he turns on the stove, “I was hoping for a reward after you got better but you saying that you love me if good enough I guess,”
“I lied. I actually hate hyung so much.” Sehun lets out a deep scary cough that the both of them cringe at.
Yixing sighs, “I love you too Sehun-ah.”
Sehun runs. He makes his way across the road ignoring the honks of cars and onto the path. This is it. He’s on his way to see Luhan. Fussing a bit over what he was going to say when he got to Luhan.
Should he go all out extravagant? Like get on one knee when he hands out the rose. Or just shyly extend his arms and look down so he doesn’t have to see Luhan’s face if he rejects him. Which hopefully doesn’t happen.
Although the second option sounds easier and could he could play it off as a friendship offering if Luhan rejected him. He has to prove to Luhan hyung that he’s a man. And the first option seems a lot more romantic and manly right? Right? Because Luhan like manly men right?
The guy's obsessed with that soccer team and soccer players are pretty manly right? Luhan likes soccer and he’s pretty manly. Despite the gushing he does over Man U whenever there’s a game on. He monopolises the tv in the hairdresser for that reason, always cutting a little bit too much of Sehun’s hair off than originally intended.
Yeah. Manly approach. Through internal debating Sehun doesn’t see the ditch in the worn down sidewalk behind the bus stop. He makes his third mistake. He doesn’t realise until his foot hit ground a little later than he expected resulting in him rolling his ankle in the ditch.
Sharp pain runs up through his leg and he lets out a loud curse that shocked the birds in the nearby trees. He lets out an entire string of curses when he pulls his foot out of the ditch. The pain was not unfamiliar to him. Sehun knew well enough he had sprain. He's done this at least twice before for not landing a jump right during dance practice.
Jongin would always get the ice while Yixing would sit him up comfortably, prop his foot up on a cushion then bandage it after making sure Sehun hadn't broken anything. But Sehun didn’t have Jongin to get him ice or Yixing to help him now.
There was no turning back either. He can deal with a sprained ankle for that short distance between here and the hairdressers, if it was for Luhan hyung. Sehun breathes deeply in and out putting the slightest bit of pressure on his injured foot and immediately hisses. Nope.
Luhan hyung. For Luhan hyung. You can’t let this rose go to waste now can you Sehun?
He starts to hop on his good leg. Thankful that it was his stronger leg that wasn’t injured. He ignores the pain that comes from his sprained ankle as it gets jostled with each hop. After a metre or so Sehun was about ready to give up and just crawl. But he’s a tad too self-conscious to embarrass himself like that in public even though there’s no one on this path but himself.
He yearns to be at home with his ankle elevated and a nice cooling ice pack on top. While he watched some dumb unrealistic korean drama (seriously who gets into that many car accidents and loses their memory geez).
But he’s reminded of his sad reality with each grunt of pain as he just starts trying to skid his feet along ineffectively looking like he was trying to skate on ice. Barely three metres later he hears the rolling of what sounded like a skateboard on the pavement from behind him.
“Sehun? What are you doing?”
Sehun looks to his side and sees a concerned Zitao who had stopped beside him.
“Hey Tao, I’m just...um...walking?” Sehun replies and tries to cover up the fact that his left ankle is out of use by trying to put his foot down but all it does is make him wince catching Zitao’s attention immediately.
“You hurt your foot…”
“Yeah,” Sehun sheepishly admits sort of kinda really embarrassed at being injured in front of someone he wasn’t that close with.
“Do you need help?” Tao asks growing more concerned by the second.
“Uh, I’ll be fine. I don’t think there’s anything you can do to help me. You probably have training right now don’t you?” Sehun says spotting the big wushu stick Zitao was carrying in his hands.
“I could carry you,”
Sehun balks and furiously shakes his head, “no, no, it’s okay.” Sehun’s cheeks grow red at having to be carried by someone. Luhan wouldn’t think that was manly at all.
“Do you need support then? You could lean on me and I’ll help you to wherever you’re going? Or--my stick you can use this, like a walking cane uses an old man.”
Sehun doesn’t notice the Zitao’s wording mix-up agrees to take the wushu stick, “are you sure
though? Don’t you need this?”
“It’s fine. That one is old. I have another one. That one is more suitable anyway.”
“Thank you Tao, I’ll return this to you as soon as I can.”
Zitao waves him off as he sets off on his skateboard after making sure Sehun could actually use the stick to walk. And so Sehun sets off. Hope had filled him again. He was determined and he was going to make it to Luhan hyung no matter what.
He makes the great journey to the hairdressers. Something that would’ve taken fifteen minutes if he had run but ended up taking close to an hour and a half before he finally made it.
He passes the already closed hairdresser. About to collapse in defeat. When the door of the restaurant opens and Luhan steps out.
“Luhan hyung,” Sehun breathes, he's exhausted. So exhausted. But seeing Luhan filled him with a new energy.
“Oh, hi Sehun. I didn’t see you there. Why do you have a stick? And oh god- what happened to you foot? Are you okay?” Luhan rushes forward but Sehun holds him back.
“Luhan hyung, I have something to tell you.” Sehun reaches into his pocket and pulls out the rose.
Upon seeing the rose Luhan’s mouth opens to say something but Sehun stops him. “Luhan hyung I really really like you and was wondering if-”
“Sehun, I can’t.” Luhan cuts him off.
Sehun feels like he’s been punched in the gut. “What? Why?”
Luhan gives him a saddened and sympathetic look that makes Sehun want to collapse on the ground and break down in sobs. Sehun already felt pathetic standing there with a sprained ankle, probably looking like a hot mess.
“But won’t you...won’t you at least take the rose?”
Luhan clasps his hand around Sehun’s outstretched one and pushes it down in a soft rejection.
“I don’t deserve it Sehun. I’m sorry.”
Sehun wants to plead for the elder to give him a chance. But then, someone else is exiting the restaurant and they call out to Luhan before making their way over and wrapping an arm around his shoulders. Sehun sees this. And it breaks him up inside. As if Luhan rejecting him didn’t hurt him enough.
“Sehun, this is my fiance Minseok.” Fiance, of course. Sehun chokes and wills himself to give a polite nod. He pulls his hand from Luhan’s.
“It’s okay Luhan hyung, I’m sorry too. I should’ve...known.” The looks Luhan gives him hurts him even more so he looks away.
“Bye Sehun.” He hears Luhan say. He thinks he hears his fiance start to say something but is silenced. He hears soft murmurs as he squeezes his eyes shuts and fights the tears that are threatening to spill over.
Through hazy vision he sees Luhan get on the back of a motorcycle and disappear down the street. That’s when Sehun collapses.
He’s never felt this lost. And was his chest supposed to feel this empty? He clutches at the rose. He’s about the throw it out onto the road where it’ll be run over by a car but he catches sight of the placard on the rose again. Had he really loved Luhan? Had Luhan ever loved him?
The answer was no. Sehun didn’t want to admit it. Admitting it only made it hurt more. But he couldn’t run from the truth could he? That what he had was just a silly crush that stayed to true to its name by making him feel exactly that.
His thoughts swim in his mind and he wants nothing more than to just make it stop.
“Sehun-ah? What are you doing out here on the ground?”
Sehun tenses up at the familiar voice. He refuses to turn around or look at the other remembering the words he’d said in anger to the elder. He’d messed up. He’d messed up so badly. He hurt someone he cared about in a brief flash of anger that was gone as fast as it had appeared. Only to leave him wallowing in guilt and now heartbroken.
“Sehun-ah, what’s wrong?”
The tears Sehun held back had spilled over at those words coming from that familiar comforting voice. Sobs wrack through his body and he feels himself being pulled into a warm embrace.
“Yixing hyung,” the name barely comes out in gasps as Sehun tried to breathe through the tremors running through his chest. He curled in on himself.
Yixing only hushes him and pets his head. Sehun leans into the touch, like he always does when Yixing comforts him.
“You- you were right,” Sehun would usually wait for an ‘I told you so’ but that was something Jongin would say and make Sehun punch him in annoyance. But this was Yixing hyung. Who knew Sehun more than Sehun knew himself. Who knew that ‘I told you so’ is definitely not what he should say right now even if Sehun wanted him to.
Because Sehun should have listened to what Yixing had to say to him. Even if Sehun didn’t want to hear it. He should’ve because he cares so much about his Yixing hyung who he knows cares about him too.
Because he loves his Yixing hyung and he knows that Yixing hyung loves him too.
“Yixing hyung…” Sehun says once he’s steadied his breathing.
Yixing hums in response.
“I love you.”
Sehun feels Yixing chuckle vibrate through his chest from where he’s resting his head on it.
“I love you too my Sehunnie.”
Sehun takes Yixing’s hand and places the rose in it holding it there in case Yixing tried to give it back. Yixing whispers a thank you and kisses Sehun’s forehead.
Sehun just smiles and holds onto Yixing tighter and thinks that maybe this what he was ready for.