theme: o50. Lost.
pair: Heechul/Kyuhyun; with mention of KangTeuk
Kyuhyun yawned and stretched as he padded into the kitchen one bright spring morning. He sat down at the table and ate the porridge that was set out for him. He ate there complacently when his grandfather came in,
“Little Kyu, get dressed, I have an errand for you to do,” his grandfather said, biting on his pipe as he always did.
“I’m twenty-one, stop calling me ‘little’,” Kyuhyun looked up from his breakfast before adding, “What is it Grandpa Kangin?”
Grandpa Kangin leaned against the fridge, crossing his arms as he closed his eyes a moment. A forlorn look crossed his face as he spoke, “Your Grandma Eeteuk still refuses to come home, so I want you to go through the SuJu forest and bring her some food.”
“All you have to do is stop calling her old and she’ll come home,” Kyuhyun pointed out,
“She is old,” Grandpa Kangin argued before shaking his head, “That’s besides the point. You know how useless she is when she’s on her own. I did all the cooking - so, go get ready and I’ll give you the food so you can bring it to her.”
Kyuhyun finished his food and got ready. When he came down a quarter hour later, he was dressed in dark jeans and the red hooded sweater his Grandma Eeteuk had sewn (he knew she really just bought it. Grandma Eeteuk really was useless).
When Kyuhyun came down again, Grandpa Kangin was waiting by the front door of their cottage with a basket full of bread, cheese slices, bowls of rice, pork belly, some kimbab, apples and oranges.
“Now Little Kyu,” Grandpa Kangin said as he gave him the basket, “Keep to the path in the SuJu forest - don’t stray from it.”
“I know Grandpa Kangin,” Kyuhyun nodded as he hooked the handle of his basket onto the handle of his bicycle,
“And, I’ve told you many times but I’ll tell you again - watch out for the wolf named Heechul. He’ll try to get the basket of food from you. He’s been trying to get food from all of the villagers lately,” Grandpa Kangin stated,
“But why doesn’t he just eat the villagers that go into the forest?” Kyuhyun asked,
“Yesung-sshi from the bakery says that Heechul isn’t interested in the villagers - too ugly. He’s looking for pretty-looking food,” Grandpa Kangin chewed on the end of his pipe a moment, “You might be too cute to send into the forest.”
“If you let me use your car it won’t be a problem,” Kyuhyun suggested casually as he glanced over at the car parked beside their cottage.
Grandpa Kangin smacked Kyuhyun’s head lightly, “No. Don’t you know how the story goes? You’re lucky I’m letting you bring your bicycle. In my day, we didn’t have cars or bicycles.”
“I know, I know… in your day, the little girl went into the forest and walked to her grandmother’s house,” Kyuhyun waved him off, “Don’t worry Grandpa Kangin. I’ll stay to the path and if I come across the wolf named Heechul, I won’t give him my basket.”
Grandpa Kangin patted Kyuhyun’s head this time, “That’s my grandson. Be careful and give Grandma Eeteuk my love.”
“I will,” Kyuhyun said as he straddled his bike, “but you could give it to her in person if you’d stop calling her old!” With that, he started off into the forest, barely hearing his grandpa’s last words of ‘she is old!’.
After half an hour of continuous rigorous biking, Kyuhyun got tired. He got off his bike and began to walk it, deciding to enjoy the rest of the morning. He’d go faster again after lunch. As he continued along, he lifted the handkerchief from the basket to peer inside. As he had assumed, Grandpa Kangin packed him a lunch.
“So, you don’t only love Grandma Eeteuk,” Kyuhyun smiled as he reached in and took out a kimbab, popping it into his mouth,
“Yo man! What’s up!?”
Kyuhyun, jumped at the sudden voice. He froze in his progress when he saw a person in the pathway before him. “Who… who are you?”
“Oh, Korean, all right, that makes my job easier. I’m Heechul,” he said,
Kyuhyun cocked his head slightly. Heechul wasn’t an actual wolf, he was just another person. Well, from his mane-like hair, he could see the reference to a wolf, but Kyuhyun would’ve likened him more to a lion than a wolf.
Heechul blinked, pulling out a mirror, “Is there something on my face? Oh - there isn’t,” he put away the mirror, “You must have just been mesmerized by my beauty.”
“Something like that…” Kyuhyun said dryly as he attempted to go around him, “Excuse me, I’m in a rush to get to my grandma’s house.”
“Oh? Well, this forest is pretty dangerous,” Heechul said as he fell into step with him, “I can be your body guard - free of charge; for some food.”
“No thank you,” Kyuhyun replied, furtively glancing at the basket to make sure the handkerchief was hiding the food again.
“Are you sure? It’s free of charge,” Heechul prompted before adding “for some pretty food.”
“No thanks, I’m not lost or anything and I’ll stick to this path,” Kyuhyun insisted,
“I wasn’t offering a map or tour - I was offering protection,” Heechul grounded out,
Kyuhyun looked Heechul once over, “I don’t need protection. Masters Sungmin and Hankyung have been teaching me martial arts in the village dojo.”
Heechul blinked, “The village has a dojo!? What kind of village has a dojo?”
“The kind that has a dojo,” Kyuhyun answered smartly, “So you can see, I don’t need your assistance. Now if you excuse me, I must be on my way.” He hopped onto his bike and sped off before Heechul could say or do anymore.
Another half hour later, Kyuhyun realized he was almost at Grandma Eeteuk’s house on the other side of the SuJu forest. As he biked along, he reached into the basket and pulled out a Kaiser roll. He chewed on it happily as he went along on the pathway. Suddenly, he heard a horn honking.
Startled, he moved to the side of the path as a moped came up beside him, with none other than Heechul riding it, his hair tamed beneath the helmet.
“Still don’t want a body guard?” Heechul asked, eyeing the basket every so often.
“Nope,” Kyuhyun replied, keeping his gaze ahead of him. This Heechul guy was persistent!
“How about a companion? It must be lonely travelling alone,” Heechul said, “actually, I can get you to your grandmother’s house faster. Pass me your basket of food and you can ride behind me on this.”
Kyuhyun shook his head, “I like to watch the scenery as I bike.”
“That’s a lot of food for just your grandmother,” Heechul commented lightly,
“Knowing grandma, she hasn’t eaten since she left grandpa. She can’t cook,” Kyuhyun explained simply, “So she’ll probably wolf this down the moment I show it to her.”
Heechul could feel himself salivating at the thought of the food beneath the handkerchief, “So… what food do you have in there?”
“Black bean noodles,” Kyuhyun answered smoothly,
Heechul cringed at the thought of the ugly-looking food, “Black bean noodles?”
Kyuhyun nodded, “Yup, they’re grandma’s favourite.”
“It is delicious… but so… aesthetically unpleasant,” Heechul muttered, “Just black bean noodles?”
“Black bean noodles and only black bean noodles,” Kyuhyun replied in a mock sad tone, “Unfortunately it’s all grandma will eat. She says it reminds her of grandpa’s eyes: black and ugly.”
Heechul blinked, “They sound so loving.”
“Yup, they are,” Kyuhyun said happily. He glanced at Heechul, “Your hair’s messy.”
Immediately, Heechul stopped his moped to inspect his hair. To his horror, the village brat hadn’t been lying and had to fix his hair immediately. He could stop and fix his hair for some time, the village boy would need at least another hour to get to his grandmother’s house. Heechul knew the boy was lying, he had seen him eat a piece of kimbab earlier, so there was more than -eck - black bean noodles in that basket, and he was determined to get it.
As Heechul glanced in his mirror, placing the last strand of his hair in perfect placement again, he realized something: he could get to the grandmother’s house before the boy. And, if he dressed up as the grandmother, he’d be able to get the basket of food! Heechul grinned happily, oh he was smart! Why hadn’t he thought of it sooner? So, with his idea fresh in his mind, he hopped back onto his moped and sped off, careful not to ruin his hair.
After another hour of biking through the SuJu forest, Kyuhyun finally spotted his grandmother’s house. Relieved he finally got there, Kyuhyun quickened his pace to reach the house faster. Just as he was getting off his bike, Heechul ran out of his grandmother’s house, screaming at the top of his lungs and not caring his hair was messy.
“Village brat! Save me!” He cried as he ran behind Kyuhyun, crouching as if hiding and peering around him back at the house.
“From what?” Kyuhyun asked in confusion.
As if answering him, Grandma Eeteuk came running out of the house, hair tied back and broom in hand, “Wake me from my nap will you!? I’LL SHOW YOU!” Suddenly, seeing Kyuhyun, she lowered her broom and smiled, dimpling in the left corner of her mouth, “Little Kyu!”
“Little Kyu? You look like you’re twenty-one, why is she calling you ‘little’?” Heechul asked,
Kyuhyun shrugged and sighed, “I have no idea.”
Then, Grandma Eeteuk spotted the scoundrel behind her grandson. She came at Heechul with her broom, “How dare you wake a cute grandmother from her sleep!?”
“AISH! Stop!” Heechul begged. He backed away from Kyuhyun while Grandma Eeteuk bombarded him with powerful smacks from her broom, “I’m sorry! I’m sorry! I’ll leave you alone!”
“And you leave my grandson alone too!” Grandma Eeteuk said menacingly, waving her broom at him,
“You’re so old, how are you so strong!?” Heechul questioned as he put on his helmet in panic,
“I AM NOT OLD!” Grandma Eeteuk exclaimed angrily, throwing her broom at the retreating moped. Once Heechul had disappeared from view, Grandma Eeteuk turned to her grandson, pulling him into a tight embrace, “Little Kyu! What a pleasant surprise, do come into my house,” she smiled as she lead the way back inside. “Did your Grandpa Kangin send you?”
“With food,” Kyuhyun nodded. Grandma Eeteuk practically jumped at the basket, but not before Kyuhyun could slip out a bowl of rice and the kimbab. “Oh, and he sends his love,”
“Yes well, how about he sends his apologies,” Grandma Eeteuk snapped before smiling happily at her food and disappearing into the house. “And you even wore the red hooded sweater I made you. Oh, this is a good day. Come, come, let’s eat!”
Before he entered, Kyuhyun looked back and saw the top of a familiar mane poking out from behind a bush and a glint from - what he suspected to be - a mirror. He placed the bowl of rice and container of kimbab on the doorstep. He stared at the bush a moment longer and then joined his grandmother, closing the door behind him.