Title A Thousand Years
genre: romance, slight angst
an: from a prompt i saw in my tline although i forgot exactly what it was orz im sorry for this.
please forgive the crime i have committed.;~;
an ii: title and lyrics used in the fic was from the song a thousand years by christina perri
Baekhyun sat by the teak dining table, his eyes trained on the kitchen doorway. The house was quiet, almost too quiet, but he barely noticed because of his thundering heartbeat. He has been staring at the exact same spot for the last hour waiting for Chanyeol's tall frame to fill it, waiting for his lover to appear with his nose red from the cold and his hair wet from the falling snow.
He remembered telling Chanyeol to wear thicker clothes for he felt the temperature drop when he woke up this morning--Baekhyun has always been sensitive to the cold--but his stubborn boyfriend still insisted on his worn dark blue jacket because Baekhyun once told him that he looked handsome in it. Baekhyun gave him a resigned smile because what else could he do? He could scold him and hit him on the shoulder but he'd eventually give in with a kiss anyway because it was Chanyeol. Of course.
The unforgiving seconds ticked by with still no sign of him--not even a call or a text message. This wasn't like Chanyeol, not at all, but the thought that something bad had happened was too much for Baekhyun to accept so he sat there unmoving and waited. He waited until his knuckles were white from tightly gripping the edge of the table. He hated this, hated being scared for fear was cold and its icy claws knew no pity.
Then the call came.
He only had three minutes to get to his Biology class and what genius thought it was a good idea to put the Science Department at the other end of the big campus? He didn't even know why he had to take that subject when he was a Music major for crying out loud.
But Baekhyun never missed a class no matter what it was, so he ran as quickly as he could, his white shirt sticking to his back with sweat. He glanced at his watch. Two minutes.
There was a painful stitch forming on his side. Faster, his mind chanted. Faster.
Just one more corner to round and he'd be there. He sped up. Everything was a blur of black and white. One minute.
He turned left and he suddenly found himself on his back as he collided with a solid chest. His breath was knocked out of him with the impact and Baekhyun panted as he lay there. The sky was too bright and it hurt the eyes to look up
Then a shadow blocked his vision. "Are you alright?"
Baekhyun nodded and then he was pulled up by the arms. He blinked once, twice.
"Are you sure?" The deep voice asked again.
Baekhyun turned his head towards the sound. "Yes, I'm--"
And he really couldn't speak after. All that was blurred came into sharp focus. In front of him was a very tall boy. Dark brown hair, large worried eyes and a small bump on the bridge of an otherwise straight nose. His lips were pink and wide, his skin healthy with the blush of youth. He was every color that he has never seen. Baekhyun thought he was beautiful.
"I'm sorry. I didn't see you." The boy took a step close. "Are you sure you're not hurt?"
All Baekhyun could do was shake his head slowly.
The boy smiled widely, brightly. He took another step closer. "Park Chanyeol."
Instinctively, Baekhyun started reaching for the hand held out to him. His eyes caught a glimpse of his watch and he paused, hesitated. The three minutes were up.
His eyes returned to the upheld palm and his hands travelled the remaining distance. His fingers were thin and pale in contrast with the boy's larger ones. But it was a perfect fit. It was perfect.
He looked up at the tall boy's face. He realized he needed more minutes. With him. "Byun Baekhyun."
It wasn't for another two hours that Baekhyun was allowed to enter the hospital room. Those two hours were spent biting his nails and stiffening his spine. He doesn't want to break down when he saw Chanyeol. He wanted to be strong because the doctors told him Chanyeol was very weak.
Baekhyun took a deep breath before he opened the door. He tried to smile so at the off chance that Chanyeol was awake, he wouldn't be worried about Baekhyun. But Baekhyun found he couldn't smile. Not when the first thing he saw was Chanyeol, lying on the bed--a gash on his temple and his face, ashen.
Transparent tubes were attached to his nostrils, more tubes crisscrossing his body. He seemed to shrink against the stark white sheets. Baekhyun walked closer, his every step punctuated by the ominous beeping of the cardiac monitor.
His hand trembled as he touched his hair. This wasn't like Chanyeol. He was never so still. He was always running around with his arms flailing. Always jumping, bouncing, and rolling around. He was always nuzzling, hugging and kissing Baekhyun. Always.
It hurt to breathe when Chanyeol was barely breathing himself. There was a burn and then the tears fell--blurring his vision, drowning his heart. His lips could barely move but he forced his voice out. Though a small whisper, it was like a scream inside the quiet room. "Chanyeol."
He repeated his name, louder. "Chanyeol."
He sobbed. Then he broke.
How dare he? How dare he do this to you? Stupid drunk. Stupid car. Stupid street. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.
He didn't notice his hands clench until he could feel his nails digging painfully into his palms. His shoulders were shaking and he felt so helpless. Baekhyun buried his head in his hands. What do I do?
He looked up and he saw Chanyeol's eyes on him, lids barely open. Baekhyun leaned close and kissed his forehead.
"Baek, I'm sorry." Chanyeol's usually deep voice sounded faint.
"Shh, it's not your fault."
"Yes. You, crying... I promised... Not to ever make you cry," Chanyeol said weakly. Baekhyun could hear the strain in his voice. "I'm sorry."
"Chanyeol." He tried to reprimand him for being ridiculous but it sounded more like a desperate plea.
Chanyeol slowly turned his palm up and Baekhyun placed his hand on top of it. "Baekhyun."
He squeezed his lover's hand. Chanyeol smiled and that was the saddest smile Baekhyun had ever seen on his face. "Baek, I--"
Chanyeol's hold tightened for a moment before it slackened and Baekhyun felt so cold.
The steady beeping turned into a deafening wail. "No."
It was confusing, doctors and nurses started coming in, pushing him further and further away. Frantic voices filled the room and Baekhyun found himself outside, leaning his forehead against the wall.
Please, Chanyeol. Please.
Baekhyun doesn't understand why Chanyeol couldn't take him to school today. His boyfriend has been acting weird for the past couple of days. He came home late last night, too. When Baekhyun asked him if there was anything wrong, Chanyeol just shook his head and smiled widely at him.
There was a shuffling of feet and Baekhyun was pulled away from his thoughts as students filled the music room. He stretched his slender fingers before running them gently over the piano keys. "Okay. What has gotten into my glee club and you are all here early?"
The seventeen highschoolers snickered. Baekhyun couldn't help but grin at his precious students, each one of them amazingly talented and passionate about music. It was tiring to take up his Masters while teaching and even supervising the school's glee club but it was worth it to hear these angels sing.
He raised his eyebrow in response to their mischievous laughter. "Fine. Don't tell the old Mr. Byun." The students just continued to laugh at him.
"Okay, guys. Let's start with the refrain of the song this time. In one, two--" He waved his finger in the air as a signal for them to begin when a girl raised her hand.
"Mr. Byun, can we do the song a capella first? So we could, like, you know?"
Baekhyun doesn't know but it was the first time they requested something so he agreed.
The students’ grins widened some more. "Okay, then. In one, two--"
The basses started humming before the middle and higher ranges joined in progression. Baekhyun's brows knitted. This wasn't the piece they were working on. He was about to ask his students what they were up to when a voice started to sing behind him.
I have died everyday waiting of you
Darling, don't be afraid
I have loved you for a thousand years
I'll love you for a thousand more
He knew that impossibly deep and out of tune voice. He turned to find Chanyeol walking towards him holding a single rose in one hand. He was all long limbs and big, round eyes. Baekhyun thought that after five years, he was still every wonderful color in his world. "Park Chanyeol."
His boyfriend waved at him after letting out another hopelessly flat note. Baekhyun could still hear his students carry on with the song and he knew they were in on this with Chanyeol but he was too busy being touched--being happy--that he didn't quite mind.
"Mr. Byun," Chanyeol started, "Since you now know my deepest, darkest secret you would have to be eliminated."
Baekhyun crossed his arms over his chest. "And what secret is that?"
"That I can't sing to save my life."
Baekhyun laughed. "I've known that forever."
Chanyeol waved a finger at him. "Quiet, Mr. Byun. You're not following the script. I say, you have to be eliminated. Then you say--"
"Please don't kill me?" Baekhyun asked, amused. A few snickers were heard from the students but the song still went on.
Chanyeol tried to look serious but it was hard when there was an obvious smile tugging at his lips. "Alright, I won't eliminate you but in return you have to say yes."
"Yes to what-- are you doing?"
"Mr. Byun." Chanyeol was down on one knee holding out a simple golden ring. "Will you marry me?"
He was running again. But this time, everything was in gray, white, and blue. The sound of his footsteps was loud against the hospital's tiled floors. And his destination was a thousand times more important than a Biology pop quiz.
Baekhyun thought they had three weeks more but they probably didn't. He wanted to do this today. He ran until stitches formed on his side but he didn't stop. He was never going to stop until he reached it.
He turned a sharp corner and the wind was knocked out of him when he saw the metal carving above the wooden double doors. The doors were open and Baekhyun wasted no time to enter. It seemed empty. "Hello?"
A man in a white shirt stood from a pew a few feet away from him. "How may I help you?"
Baekhyun walked to him and held on to his shoulders in relief. He looked into the old man's eyes and his lips trembled when he tried to smile, his heart beating painfully.
"I'm in love," Baekhyun said and just like that he could feel the now familiar burning behind his eyelids. "I'm in love with Chanyeol so much."
The man nodded in understanding. "Where is he?"
"Third floor, in a yellow room. I wish I could have him in a blue one. We decided on blue for our... for... " Baekhyun searched the man's eyes and his tears finally fell at the gentle acquiescence there. "I just... love him so much."
"Don't worry, child." Baekhyun felt a pat on his head.
"Thank you." He bowed and gave in to the sobs he was holding in check. "Thank you."
Baekhyun was outside--the sun was just beginning to rise, bathing the city in fading indigo--when he dialed his friend's number. "Kyungsoo?"
"Baekhyun! You're in the hospital now? I was just on my way there and--"
There was a pause before Kyungsoo spoke quietly. "What is it, Baek?"
"Chanyeol and I are doing it today. We're doing it today."
"We need you," he pleaded.
"I'll be there, Baekhyun. You needn't ask twice."
And Baekhyun thought Kyungsoo, more than anyone, understood the urgency he felt. Although, he kept on telling himself there was no other reason for holding the wedding today. He just really loved Chanyeol.
"You know what? Maybe we should just call the whole thing off!"
Baekhyun slammed the door to their room and threw himself on the bed where he curled up, hugging his knees.
Was it so wrong to want their wedding day to be perfect? He just wanted it to be memorable because he would just get married once, who wouldn't want it to be special?
Baekhyun spent the past month planning and handling the wedding preparations. He tried to get Chanyeol involved but he always brushed him off with an I'm busy, Baek or an I've got tons to do. Chanyeol never had time.
Today was the last straw when, during dinner, Baekhyun asked Chanyeol to come with him to the food tasting and the other replied that he couldn't with a bland It's just a cake, Baekhyun.
Baekhyun felt that the wedding wasn't important to Chanyeol. That he wasn't important to Chanyeol. Was he the only one excited that they will do it?
Baekhyun was busy, too, but he always made time. It hurt to think that he wanted this more than Chanyeol does.
His eyes found their framed picture on the bedside table. It was taken during senior year and it was Baekhyun's favorite. He took the picture himself with his phone, the angle only showing up to the top of their shoulders. He was facing the camera, all teeth and smiles, while Chanyeol was over his shoulder, his face in profile as he beams down at Baekhyun. He often teased Chanyeol that he loved the picture because it showed how head over heels Chanyeol was over him. His boyfriend would retaliate with tickling his sensitive neck but would whisper All true in his ear anyway.
Baekhyun tensed when he heard the door open. He felt the bed dip as Chanyeol lay behind him. "Baek."
"It's not just cake." Baekhyun paused because he could hear his voice break. He could feel Chanyeol breathing deeply. "It's our wedding, Chanyeol."
He closed his eyes and hugged his knees tighter. "Chanyeol, don't... don't you want it anymore? Don't you love me any--"
With a small cry, Baekhyun felt long arms snake around his middle, gathering him close, and Chanyeol's head against the crook of his neck. "Baek, don't ever say that. Never say that. I love you. God, I love you so much."
"Then why?" Baekhyun felt his throat closing up. "I just wanted our wedding to be... perfect."
"I know, Baekhyun. I'm sorry." Chanyeol pulled him tighter against his chest. "Tell me."
Silence. Then Baekhyun started, voice hoarse. "It wouldn't be too grand, just a simple ceremony with our closest friends."
"Our families, Kyungsoo, Jongin and the gang," Chanyeol whispered.
Baekhyun nodded. "The theme would be blue because that's your favorite color. But the flowers would be white. I was thinking daisies or--"
"Or white roses."
Baekhyun smiled wearily. "Yes. Then we'd both be in white suits."
"You'll look beautiful in white... in any color." Chanyeol kissed his cheek.
"I know." Baekhyun's put his arm over Chanyeol's. "So do you. Then I'll walk down the aisle and--"
"Hey, what if I wanted to walk down the aisle?"
"Chanyeol, you walk funny. Let me do the walking." Their hands found each other against Baekhyun's stomach. "And I wouldn't give you the opportunity to run off."
"I'll never do that. But on second thought, you coming towards me would be amazing."
Baekhyun squeezed Chanyeol's hand. "And then we'll say our vows. A short reception after and then it's... done." His words unexpectedly ending with a sob.
Chanyeol turned Baekhyun so they were lying face to face. He cupped Baekhyun's cheek in his large hand. "I'm stupid, Baek. My brain... It really doesn't function well without you. That's why I left all the planning to you. It's not that I don't want any of the things you wanted. It's just... You and my ring on your finger is enough for me."
"You're an idiot," Baekhyun said against Chanyeol's lips. The kiss was deep, fierce and all consuming. Their bodies and hearts tangled. "I love you."
With such a short notice, the wedding guest list dwindled down to two nurses, a doctor, and Kyungsoo. Their friend smiled encouragingly at them.
There were neither daisies nor roses, just a vase of violet tulips on the bedside table.
Baekhyun was in his yellow and brown striped sweater that he has been in since last night, the one Chanyeol gave him with a Valentine's card that said To My Honey B. Chanyeol was in his white hospital gown and Baekhyun fleetingly thought that atleast one of them was in white.
There was no walk down the aisle but it doesn't matter as Baekhyun looked down at his and Chanyeol's linked hands. To hold him like this is enough, more than enough. The wedding plans now seemed foolish, unnecessary. He would take Chanyeol any way he could.
Chanyeol squeezed his hand and Baekhyun's eyes went to his face. He was pale. There was a thin layer of perspiration across his forehead, above the gauze covering his wounds. His lips were dry and chapped but they were parted into a Chanyeol smile.
The minister came in and stood at the end of the bed.
Wedding vows were spoken. Rings were exchanged. Happy and grateful tears were shed. Then it was done and Baekhyun was now leaning over Chanyeol for the kiss to seal their promises.
He wanted to wrap him in his arms tightly but he settled for a wobbly smile and a whispered threat. "You told me you'll love me for a thousand years. But Chanyeol, I'll make forever come true so you better love me for longer than that or else--"
"It's our wedding, Baek. Stop bullying me," Chanyeol said before reaching up behind Baekhyun's head and pulling him down so their lips could meet. And the kiss was sweeter than any flavor of cake.
"Baekhyun!" Chanyeol waved at Baekhyun from across the lobby of the accounting firm he worked for. Several employees looked and frowned at them but Baekhyun didn't mind. He didn't know how Chanyeol could stay happy in this depressing and colorless environment but then again he was Chanyeol. And Chanyeol was happiness himself.
"Have you been waiting long?" the taller guy asked when he reached Baekhyun.
Baekhyun shook his head. "No. I just got here."
"You shouldn't have picked me up. The school is quite far from here and you're probably tired." They held hands while walking towards the bus stop. Chanyeol's car was up for maintenance and Baekhyun thought it was a good opportunity to ride the bus together.
"It's okay." He swung their hands playfully. "I missed this."
"Maybe, I'll sell the car and we can just ride the bus everyday again."
Baekhyun hit him with his free hand. "Don't you dare."
They were still laughing when they got on the bus. They were standing, facing the windows and watching the red and orange of fall pass by. Baekhyun leaned back against Chanyeol and the hand around his shoulders tightened.
It was dark when they arrived on their stop. Their hands were linked again and Baekhyun was filled with content. The stroll was slow, leisurely, for neither wanted it to end soon.
"You know, Baek, I was thinking."
Baekhyun grinned. He knew Chanyeol wouldn't be able to keep quiet for long. "What?"
"For our honeymoon... how about we have it on a beach resort? Here or abroad, doesn't matter. I just feel like walking on a sandy beach with you and maybe doing other... stuff there, too." Chanyeol gave him an exaggerated wink.
"One, by the time we reach our honeymoon it would be winter. We'd freeze to death. And two, if ever I was crazy enough to agree, do you really want sand inside your underwear?"
"You have a point," Chanyeol huddled closer. "How about a safari? Or a trip to an African jungle?"
Baekhyun gave him a look that Chanyeol knew well. "Okay, okay. I was just kidding. Kind of," he said which earned him an elbow to the ribs. "So violent."
Baekhyun rolled his eyes at his lover and turned his head to give him a peck on the jaw. Chanyeol grinned widely and they continued walking.
"What do you think of a honeymoon in Paris? Don't they say it's the city of love?"
"Chanyeol, we're both poor in English, let alone French. I don't think that's a good idea." Baekhyun pulled Chanyeol's scarf a little higher on the other's neck. His nose was getting all red.
"Oh, right. What if we get lost? It would be a disaster."
Baekhyun stopped again and looked up at Chanyeol. His boyfriend's words struck something deep and he... "I couldn't take it if I lost you."
Chanyeol leaned down and placed a kiss on his forehead. "You won't lose me, Baek."
They were nearing their shared apartment when Chanyeol spoke again. "Why don't we just spend our honeymoon at home? Particularly in bed. I'd rather explore your--"
Chanyeol groaned when his ribs took another hit.
The lights were low. Baekhyun was lying beside his husband on the hospital bed. He watched Chanyeol sleep all afternoon. Sometimes, he would wake and smile weakly at Baekhyun--as weak as the beeping of the monitors have become.
Baekhyun could not deny that he was getting cold. Colder and colder. He has to face the fact that losing Chanyeol--it would happen. Kyungsoo took his hand earlier before he left. He was Baekhyun's best friend and he was honest when Baekhyun couldn't be. You must prepare, Baekhyun.
Baekhyun asked himself, how do you prepare to let go of the very meaning of your existence? Just the thought of never waking up beside Chanyeol again was breaking his soul. His eyes were already swollen and tired from crying but he just couldn't stop.
He felt Chanyeol's chest shift against his cheek and he looked up to see his gaze on him. And during all this, it was the first time Baekhyun saw Chanyeol's eyes damp with tears. "Baekhyun."
"Rest, Chanyeol. Please," he said quietly.
"I'm sorry, Baek. I might not have enough time to say this so--"
Baekhyun straightened up. "What are you saying? You'll get better. You'll be better in a while. Just wait and then I'll beat you up for even saying that you won't. I'll... I'll--"
He was silenced when Chanyeol pulled him down against his chest again. Baekhyun stilled then held on to the white gown. There was no stopping the harsh sobs that were being torn from him. "Please."
"I failed, Baek. I told you I'd love you and... Take care of you for a thousand years and more." Chanyeol coughed and his breathing turned frighteningly shallow. "But it seems that I can't do it."
"Yes, you can," Baekhyun wept.
"I can't and I'm sad. I want to tell you to move on without me but it's funny how selfish I really am. I don't want you to forget me. Even after centuries pass, I want to be the only one you'll love."
There was a hot wetness against Baekhyun's temple. "I won't. You'll always be the only one."
"But that's not right. So Baek, move on. Find someone who'll love you as much as I do."
Another shallow breath. "Although, that's hard because I'll always be the one who loves you most. But… please try."
"I don't want to but... but I'm ready, Baekhyun. Because I already met you and you're the one I've been waiting for all my life. When I go, I can tell myself that I deserve to go to heaven because… I made you fall in love with me. I must have done something right." Chanyeol tried to laugh but it just ended with a strangled cough.
"Stop talking, you'll make it worse." Baekhyun buried his face deeper into Chanyeol.
"Baekhyun, tell me you love me. Tell me something sweet."
Baekhyun loved him so much. Even if fate told him in advance that they'd meet only to be separated like this, Baekhyun would still round that corner, bump into the awkwardly tall boy, be late for class and fall in love because it was Chanyeol. It has always been Chanyeol.
"I love you." Baekhyun kissed him softly before tucking himself against Chanyeol's side. "When I was young, I promised myself I'd marry someone I could do duets with. Someone who'd play the piano while I sing. Someone who'd serenade me with a guitar or a violin. But look, you're tone deaf and I'm wearing your wedding ring. That's... that's true love, right?"
Chanyeol murmured something and Baekhyun would like to believe that it was his name.
He loved it when Chanyeol said his name.
Moments passed in silence but not in peace. Baekhyun was hanging on to the heart beating against his hand. The colors were fading and soon it would be lost.
The beats slowly stop reaching for him but Baekhyun wasn't ready to let go. No, not yet. "Please, just one second more."
So cold. Colder and colder.
He was given a second. Then the second was gone.
The rays of the early morning sun slid through the bedroom curtains, hitting Chanyeol's sleeping face. Baekhyun laughed lightly when his boyfriend scrunched his nose in discomfort. "Wake up, dopey."
Chanyeol sleepily opened his eyes. "Why are you already awake? So early... Go back to sleep." Then the taller guy closed his eyes, starting to doze off again.
"Chanyeol, wake up." Baekhyun nudged his shoulder.
"Baek, what is it?" Chanyeol groaned. "Why do you enjoy torturing me?"
Baekhyun laughed again and warmth seeped into his chest when he saw Chanyeol smile at the sound. "Because," he said and then kissed the tip of Chanyeol's nose. "Chanyeol, what if we grow old and we die? What if we are born again and we don't meet? What if--"
Chanyeol snatched Baekhyun against him and moved so he was half on top of Baekhyun and his head was buried against the side of his neck. "Impossible, Baek. I'd always find you. So don't worry. In our next lifetimes... When I fall in love it would still be you. Or I wouldn't love at all. It has to be you. Everytime."
"I love you. Can we go back to sleep now, please?" Chanyeol playfully bit on his shoulder before faking a snore.
Baekhyun ran his hand through Chanyeol's hair. "Idiot."