Disclaimer: I claim no rights other than on this story
Summary: Liyin has labeled Jongdae safely and secure under the boy category. That is, until the boy turns out to be physically far from one.
A/N: My dearest friend jojibear and I have not only a slight obsession with the pairing, we also cried a little over rocker!Jongdae with his guns and his tattoos. As the talk gets deep
Foolish boy. What a foolish boy Kim Jongdae was. The thought occurred to Liyin more than once after she formally met her company junior and duet partner Chen. He had appeared youthful, which was to say eager and passionate, causing her to almost forget that by law he was very much an adult. Over the time of getting to know each other and promoting together he had soon revealed to be a responsible person, but in her head the label ‘foolish boy’ remained firmly attached to him. He showered her with attention and care, something which flattered her as greatly as it made her cautious. He was younger, manners were his duty to show and everything beyond it was flirting one might as well interpret as promoting strategy. She told herself the latter although it was very unlikely. Jongdae was genuinely taking care of her, but she did not want to get her mind confused about what him flirting her implied. No, Liyin had filed and tagged him appropriately as a funny cheerful junior and thought it to be the end of it.
"Jongdae?" Liyin softly knocked on the door of Jongdae’s hotel room. She was bored by herself and he always knew how to chase boredom away for her so she sought him out. This was not the first time they spent time after schedules, not going to sleep but sitting, talking, drinking. It was usually very comforting to be around Jongdae, his presence made her stop dwelling and enjoy the moment.
When no reply came she knocked a little harder, hoping whatever he did at the time he would hear her. Approaching noise behind the hotel room door informed her of her success and she put a smile on her face when the door opened only to freeze up in that state.
“Liyin!” Jongdae exclaimed but she noticed his heaved breath. Another thing she noticed, long before he had spoken, was his shirt, sleeves rolled up over the shoulders. It exposed the reason for her slight paralysis: a set of lean, muscular arms. Liyin blinked, quickly taking in the veins visible on his upper arms and the firmness of his forearm. It got all her labels and tags confused.
Jongdae seemed oblivious of her staring, just smiling back.
“Oh, you brought drinks. Come in, let’s get comfortable.”
Liyin finally regained control over her body and took a step back, shaking her head.
“It seems like I disturbed you in the middle of something, I’m sorry. I’ll go back to my room.”
“Now don’t be like that. You are no disturbance.” Jongdae replied and reached out to take the bottle and two glasses from her hands. With minor fascination Liyin observed how the muscles flexed and sighed before following him inside.
“I did a minor work out, that’s it. I figured when cute-face Minseok gets to wear muscle shirts why not me, so I’m working on building my arm muscles bigger.”
Liyin just nodded silently and sat on the floor, facing the TV. A Hong Kong sitcom flickered over the screen and she tried to focus, but soon her gaze returned to Jongdae and his surprisingly built.
“I am sure if you keep this up you soon have your wish.” Liyin complimented him, concealing her awe.
“Well, obviously I will never be Thor.” He shrugged while pouring them each a glass. Then he handed her one, clicking them together before drinking. She stared at him rather indecently and he blinked at her while setting his glass down.
“What? It’s true. It would not look good on me.”
“You already look good now.”
The words spilled from her lips while she thought them and he gave her a surprised look. To cover her embarrassment she slung back her drink. He smiled at her.
“You think so? Thank you.”
Liyin laughed and turned to the TV.
“So, what happened this week? Did she find out yet who he cheats on her with?”
“No, but her ultimate plan is to follow him around town.”
“How Sherlock of her.” Jongdae snorted and refilled the glasses.
“If people knew just how much sass you possess…”
“Psht” Liyin said “don’t destroy my reputation.”
“Of course, because having humor makes you a less ethereal being.” He replied jokingly and Liyin hit his arm. For a moment she just wanted to rest her hand to feel the warmth.
“Did they give you lessons in flattery or do those words come out of your mouth just naturally?” Liyin shot back. Jongdae winked at her and drank again.
“Your presence prompts them.”
“Okay, now you are too much!” She laughed and he smiled, saying nothing further. They drank until the bottle was empty and Liyin started yawning. Jongdae hugged her as usual when they parted, an action they only did among themselves. Liyin suddenly was aware of the strength of the arms wrapped around and the confusion taking her over made her lose at least another hour of sleep.
From there on Liyin could chuck her ‘foolish boy’ label into the bin. Her mind made it so she could not stop noticing. Before she had not bothered with the boy with his great voice who came to studio recordings in pajamas just like her and wore suits throughout their promotions further than that he was a talented junior who possessed a natural talent for variety shows. Sure, he flirted with her and put her at ease, but he had always been a boy. He was a boy to her no longer. She observed not only now how his button up shirts stretched over his chest, she recognized his biceps under the suit jacket and enjoyed every form of physical contact they had. When he opened doors for her and extended his arm to let her go through first her gaze found its natural way to it instead of to the front. The simpler the action the more she was drawn to watch his muscles. Liyin felt shallow for being fascinated with his arms, at the same time she felt surprise why, among all toned and muscular men in the company, he was the one she paid attention to strongly.
In the back of her mind he had never been a boy. In the back of her mind every move beyond politeness and every flirtatious comment had infested the thought that he was the kind of man she wanted to pay attention to her. And did he pay attention to her. Although she drew lines every time she felt him come too close, Liyin wanted him close, but not too close. They were idols, Jongdae more so than she was, being in love was complicated and she did not want to risk her heart exposed and hurt. Allowing the feeling of falling for him was all new to her and she was careful not to show too clearly. If he noticed how she stopped drawing lines she was not sure, but he did not push further uncomfortably and their usual ease remained.
“Can I ask you something?” Jongdae asked her while they did another performance practice before flying to Jackie Chan’s concert. Liyin tilted her head slightly and nodded while he took off his hoodie.
“Did they grow bigger?”
Jongdae rolled his sleeves up and flexed his left biceps at her. Liyin’s breath hitched at the sight. God, he was cruel. The urge to touch surged through her and she took a step closer, hand reaching up. Her fingers wrapped around Jongdae’s biceps and she felt the firmness against her palm. Her fingertips slid over the visible veins and she delighted in how they pulsed underneath. The last time she had seen his arms they had already been toned, but the muscles had been only lightly visible. Now they were big.
“Definitely.” Liyin replied Jongdae’s question simply and slid her hand further to his forearm, thumb swiping over the flexor at the bottom.
“Do you like them?”
“Yes” she breathed fascinated while a smirk tug at the corner of his lips.
“That much, huh?”
Quickly she jerked away, flustered and embarrassed over her slip up.
“I am sorry. I should have asked before touching.”
Jongdae kept smirking at her and she cursed herself for letting her fascination show.
“It’s fine. I am glad you like them although I am not Chris Hemsworth.”
“I thought you wanted to work out so they give you exposing outfits.” Liyin pointed out and ignored his comment about the actor.
“I do.” Jongdae said as he rolled his sleeves back down.
“Then stop making it sound like you want to impress me foremost.”
“Well it is not a bad side effect if I do. You need to stop seeing me as a little boy.” Jongdae told her boldly and put his hoodie back on. Liyin just gaped at him.
“What? You know it’s true.”
“You are not a little boy to me.” Liyin protested.
“Is that so?” Jongdae asked and came so close to her she had to crane her neck up to look at him. Liyin could feel the warmth of his body and smell his perfume. He never was manlier, more attractive to her than in that moment.
“Then why do you make me feel like one every time I am around you? I try so hard for your attention, but you cut me off before I get a chance to actually gain it. Why don’t you let me treat you well unrestricted, there is nothing for you to lose.”
“Nothing to lose?” Liyin asked disbelieving and tried to breathe because he was so close if he extended his arms he could hug her and it took all her willpower to not lean her head against his chest.
“What company are we in, huh? Not a single one in-company couple has ever been confirmed and I will not be so foolish to let emotions run that cause your career harm or terminate mine forever.”
Jongdae shook his head and followed her as she took a step away from him.
“Stop that. Nothing will be ruined. You saw the couples; the company is tolerant about quiet dating. I just want to be good to you, hold you for more than a good night hug and kiss you. It is all I ask for.”
Liyin sighed at him, but she stayed in her spot. Her eyes raked up his arms and she really could not think of reasons why she would not let those arms hold her. She wanted him to. He did not want her for the show on stage; he wanted her because he liked her.
Liyin sighed another time before she wrapped her arms around Jongdae’s waist. She heard him make a surprised noise at the action, but she did not let go. After mere seconds his hands splayed over the small of her back and she felt him hold her gently, despite all the strength in his arms.
“Okay?” Jongdae asked shaky and she nodded against his chest.
“You like me?”
Liyin laughed loudly.
“Yes you idiot, I like you.”
She felt his laughter bubble through his chest before she heard it and pulled away only reluctantly. He smiled at her so brightly she naturally mirrored it.
“Are you going to kiss me or not?”
“I am still progressing that you like me back.”
The stage pictures with tattooed arms and muscle shirts made Liyin nearly fall out of her seat.
“I saw the concert pictures. Seems like you got your wish.”
“I got two wishes if we are correct.” Jongdae texted her back and she was mere seconds from strangling him for being sappy, but Liyin could not deny that he was right.
“If I wasn’t busy with preparations I’d come seeing a show.”
“You’d only come for my arms anyway.”
“Look at you acting like you did not work out to impress me.”
“Can’t argue that.”
The thing she had for his arms did not cease, but Liyin enjoyed it more now that she could before. Jongdae laughed at her every time she started stroking over his arms when he held her in a back hug, but he usually kissed her neck too, which she found out to be his thing about her, so they were very much even in their fetish. He was a fooling man just as she was a foolish woman.