contest entry #18
Pairing: Kyuhyun/Sungmin, Heechul/Hankyung
Notes: AU, loosely based on the nursery rhyme 'Humpty Dumpty' and 'Inception'
Summary: Sungmin tries to remember, but every time he does... It's just an endless momentum that can't seem to be broken.
Sungmin wakes up cold and exhausted. It's bright outside, and he can see a cloudless blue sky, marred by steel bars. He looks around the room - it's desolate, and completely white. Sungmin is confused as to where he is. He also doesn't know what the date is, nor the day. He remains motionless in his white, unfamiliar surroundings. Sungmin pulls his flimsy white blanket up, but it barely adds to the warmth. He searches his mind but finds nothing...
Kyuhyun is perplexed by his newest patient.
He says his name is 'Sungmin', but usually it's just a pseudonym. He has dark brown hair that flops forward and soft brown eyes that exude innocence.
"Why do you think you're here?"
'Sungmin stares blankly at him. "I don't know." He shifts uncomfortably in his chair.
"What do you know about yourself?"
Sungmin looks cautiously at him. "My name is Sungmin."
"Just Sungmin? What about your last name?"
Sungmin looks directly into his eyes. Kyuhyun is surprised to find nothing inside his mind except the name 'Sungmin'. His mind is as clear and blank as the walls that surround them.
"I'm just Sungmin."
"Well, Sungmin, I'm Cho Kyuhyun, your psychiatrist."
He sees his name enter Sungmin's memory bank.
"So how's your patient?" Jungsu, the head of the centre, asked.
"He has no memories." Kyuhyun replied as he poured himself a cup of black coffee.
"Hmm... At least he doesn't keep insisting he's a raccoon and meant to be outside roaming in the forests." Jungsu chuckled fondly. "Anyway, good luck with Sungmin."
"I never told you his name was Sungmin." Kyuhyun stated blandly.
Jungsu smiled. "It's the first word in your memory bank. It's also attached to 'very fuckable' and 'do not fuck'."
"That was private." The bitter coffee scorched his tongue.
"At least I'm not Heechul," Jungsu smiled again.
Kyuhyun shuddered at that.
After a few days of helping Sungmin differentiate colours, Kyuhyun learns that Sungmin has been dreaming since Day 7.
"I see someone falling, and when they reach the ground, they break into millions of pieces. Sort of like an egg," Sungmin explains.
"Do you see their face?"
"Do they say anything?" Kyuhyun decides to, once again, intrude into Sungmin's mind.
"I can't really tell. It's -" Sungmin's mumbling is cut off as his eyes roll to the back of his head.
This time Sungmin's mind is a mixture of pale pink, gray and white, but incredibly bland nonetheless. Kyuhyun wants to keep this intrusion short; he attempts to enter Sungmin's subconscious, but all the doors are locked. Kyuhyun wonders how Sungmin, of all people, had learnt to block out parts of his subconscious - intentionally or not. Kyuhyun pulls out of Sungmin's mind, and Sungmin snaps back to life.
"So you don't remember anything other than what you've already told me?" Kyuhyun notices that Sungmin is flushed pink.
Kyuhyun decides that he needs Heechul's help.
Kyuhyun walks in on Heechul entering the mind of Hankyung. Actually, it looks more like mindrape than just normal mind intrusion.
"What do you want?" Heechul snaps, eyes never leaving Hankyung's.
"I need you to find out what Sungmin dreams about."
"Which one's Sungmin?"
Before Kyuhyun can answer, Heechul breaks the mindsex with Hankyung and intrudes into his own mind. Unlike most people, Heechul enters harshly and Kyuhyun can already feel a pulsating headache coming. It only takes a few seconds for Heechul to know everything.
"You have such a dirty mind." Heechul states in mock disapproval.
"And you don't?"
"The person that's falling..." Sungmin trails off as if he's trying to remember, but can't.
Kyuhyun presses his palm to Sungmin's forehead and eyes locking onto the other's - it makes mind intrusion easier - and he tries to see what Sungmin cannot.
It's an endless momentum of falling, breaking but reviving and returning, only to fall again. The harsh wind is cool against his skin; there's no sound; there's nothing, not even when he meets the ground. It's like a tree crashing in an empty forest - there's no one that can hear him. There's no one that can save him. An unknown force pushes him forward; he topples down into the darkness. As he falls, he remembers everything but as soon as he falls - falling into small pieces like mirror shards that no one can piece together without hurting themselves - he forgets. His mind is devoid of emotion, of thought, of memories; his mind is emptied, and all he can remember is his name - if that's really his name.
Kyuhyun catches Sungmin as he collapses in tears. Kyuhyun quietly strokes Sungmin's hair, hoping that it'll be some sort of comfort. He's not surprised that Sungmin's subconscious has been trying to block those dreams... or memories.
"Why did you ask for Heechul's help?" Leeteuk demands.
"He was the only one that could unblock Sungmin's subconscious," Kyuhyun replies smoothly. "You would've been too weak."
"Don't you know that if -"
"I know the consequences, but it was important in my patient's recovery."
"Your patient won't recover properly with Heechul messing with his brain," Leeteuk snaps. "He'll be placed under strict supervision from now on."
Kyuhyun shrugs and walks away. It's not like Sungmin would actually die from remembering a dream.
Kyuhyun waits patiently as Siwon, the resident Jesus lover, finishes his preaching to Sungmin. As innocent as it seemed, he knew that Siwon was sent there to see whether Sungmin was dangerous or not. Siwon picks up his Bible, does a quick mind intrusion before leaving, content, knowing that Sungmin was still safe and untainted.
Sungmin closes his eyes, and lies down on the hard bed. Kyuhyun sits down next to him, waiting for the other to speak.
After a few hours of comfortable silence, when Kyuhyun decides to leave, Sungmin asks, "Why do you keep entering my mind?"
Kyuhyun pauses, "I've never entered your mind."
Sungmin turns around to face him and replies strongly, "But you have! I can always feel you there. And that Heechul guy too! And just then, the Shisus one!"
Sungmin looks him in the eyes and Kyuhyun feels an amateur mind intrusion. It's weak but an intrusion from a patient nevertheless.
Kyuhyun calmly battles Sungmin inside his mind; quietly pushing Sungmin out of his mind.
Sungmin falls asleep in his arms.
Kyuhyun visits Sungmin again, not physically, but mentally. He enters his subconscious - something that he's been forbidden to do, especially to unstable patients - and Kyuhyun finds Sungmin in a garden that resembles the Adam and Eve Garden.
"Don't you want an apple?" Sungmin pops up from behind him, a sweet smile on his face, wearing pink clothes, and offers him a ruby red apple.
Kyuhyun takes the apple but doesn't eat it. "Why this place?"
"Why not? This places represents both good and evil in harmony." Sungmin starts to pick more fruit off other trees. "Of course, one side eventually dominates. Whenever I take more fruit, more greed grows, and there's nothing I can do. I'm not made of good, nor am I evil. I'm just human. Aren't you going to eat the apple?"
Kyuhyun chuckles. "Apples represent -"
"Does it matter what they represent? It's what's on the inside that counts." Sungmin stops and sighs. "I mean I'm classified as insane, but do you think I'm insane?"
"No," Kyuhyun says without hesitation. "No, you're not insane."
"Exactly!" Sungmin resumes his task. "If you keep conforming to stereotypes, you won't be able to appreciate the inner beauty."
Kyuhyun glances down at the red apple and cautiously takes a bite.
Sungmin places a chaste kiss on his cheek, and the dream fades.
Just like eating forbidden fruit, Kyuhyun - unable to control his lust, or was it love? - and makes love to Sungmin. It's not easy, because they have to stay quiet, and afterwards, Kyuhyun has to teach Sungmin how to close off parts of his mind. It shouldn't be a hard task, but Heechul and Siwon have probably already planted bugs inside his mind.
They lie in each other's arms, somewhat sticky, but comfortable.
They hold each other for as long as they can, but by the morning of the next day, Kyuhyun dresses himself and leaves.
Kyuhyun feels a sharp pain across his cheek as Leeteuk slaps him.
"You idiot! There's a reason why we don't sleep with our mentally unstable patients!" Leeteuk cries.
"How do you know he's mentally unstable?! Have you ever entered his mind?"
"I may have not, but Siwon and Heechul have, and there's a reason why he's here. You sleeping with him doesn't help at all."
Kyuhyun has never seen Leeteuk so anxious. "What's going to happen now?"
"He'll be moved to the Area D, and you're forbidden to have contact with him - mentally or physically."
Kyuhyun's eyes widen at the mention of Area D. "But -"
"We have no choice but to move him there."
Kyuhyun is quickly walking the corridors to get to Area E, hoping to avoid Sungmin, because their connection would only restrengthen if they saw each other.
Unfortunately, his mind thinks otherwise; his eyes are directed to two guards who are manhandling what appears to be Sungmin. This Sungmin has his eyes covered with black cloth, hands tightly bound by wire and he could see red scars lining his once perfect skin. But it's Sungmin nevertheless because he can enter the other's mind without needing to look him in the eyes.
"Get the fuck away from him." Kyuhyun dismisses the guards - Donghae and Eunhyuk whom he recognises - angrily, moving to untie Sungmin's blindfold.
The guard attempts to stop him, "You can't."
"Why can't I? I'm strong enough." Kyuhyun decides to untie Sungmin's hands first.
"You haven't seen him in weeks. Your connection will overpower your rational thinking." Donghae tries to reason.
Kyuhyun unties Sungmin's hands and blindfold, automatically looking into his eyes and filtering through his memories of Area D. He's surprised to meet a steel wall conjured from Sungmin's mind.
"You should stop trying to enter my mind." Sungmin smirks uncharacteristically, wrapping his arms around Kyuhyun's waist.
Donghae and Eunhyuk look at each other, and walk away, knowing they can do nothing about this relationship.
"I really hate this place," Sungmin drops the sweetness in his voice. "They all think I'm insane. They treat me like shit."
Kyuhyun touches the fine scars on Sungmin's arms. "Did they do this to you?"
Kyuhyun plants a kiss on his forehead. "I promise I'll get you out of here."
"I know what you're going to do," Heechul corners Kyuhyun in his office.
"What am I going to do?" Kyuhyun plays dumb, but he doubts it would work.
"You know you can't fucking free a patient. I would've done it with Geng a long time ago if it was possible." Heechul snaps. "It won't work."
"How do you know it won't work? Sungmin's dying in this place. I can't just let him stay here knowing he's suffering."
Heechul sighs. "Connections aren't always real. Sometimes they're a distorted view of the reality that you can never have."
"Meet me outside Area D, and from there we'll move to the city." Kyuhyun says inside Sungmin's mind.
"What will we do in the city? I have no money or anything..." Sungmin holds Kyuhyun's hands, looking towards the imaginary sunset.
"I have a sister there, and she can help us create a new life. A new beginning."
"But outside of here, I heard that we can't dream." Sungmin says with melancholy. "That we can't think properly, so we just don't think at all. That our minds are completely separated from our bodies."
Kyuhyun looks at Sungmin worryingly. "Where did you hear that?"
Sungmin smiles. "No where. Don't worry; it's probably just a rumour to scare possible fugitives."
Kyuhyun sighs with relief.
Sungmin stands upon the cliff face, more than one thousand metres from the ground, and two thousand from the centre. The place is quiet, exceedingly quiet, and he tries to connect to Kyuhyun, but it's just empty space.
Sungmin contemplates the life of being free, of not being labelled insane and kept inside a mental institute. Of a new beginning.
Behind him, guards stand ready to take him back. Back to where he has no rights, to where Kyuhyun is.
"Kyuhyun, where are you?" Sungmin whispers; Kyuhyun had never appeared at Area D and their contact had been totally shut off.
"You bastard," Kyuhyun glares. "Let me go."
"Not to Sungmin," Leeteuk states. "The guards will bring him back and he will be placed in solitude for as long as we need to - until your connection with him wears off."
"I'll still love him."
"It doesn't matter if you still will." Heechul interrupts. "His mind would've already crushed him. You were there at the beginning to help ease the stress of his mind, but because you decided to open his subconscious you've cursed him to an existence where he can't escape his former memories."
"You opened his subconscious, not me." Kyuhyun feels the guilt swallowing him up.
"No, I didn't do anything to him. He opened his mind to you." Heechul says. "Because he remembers you."
Sungmin closes his eyes as he feels the wind rush up. He was cornered off the edge of the cliff - funny how there's always a cliff nearby - and here he was now, falling. He remembers remembering Kyuhyun in the first few days, learning to block him off so that Kyuhyun wouldn't leave him again and he remembers...
Donghae begins to panic when he notices Heechul and Leeteuk approaching. They weren't supposed to have killed Sungmin, just capture him, but right below the cliff was Sungmin lying broken... Not that he could see with the darkness, but this wasn't the first time this had happened.
When Leeteuk approaches, he begins to cry. Heechul comforts him only for a moment but makes his way down the cliff - via an alternate route - to reach Sungmin.
"If Kyuhyun sees this..."
"He won't see it," Heechul states. "We can put Sungmin back together, wipe his and Kyuhyun's mind clear and let them start from the start."
"Again? How long have we been doing this? Sungmin is dying more and more; we can't keep placing him back together for all of eternity until the two learn not to leave." Leeteuk strokes Sungmin's pale, dead face; he feels his powers that had been unused for 136 days come back into action.
"It's the new beginning they've always wanted." Heechul smiles sadly as he watches Leeteuk fix Sungmin.
"It won't be long before they approach the end." Leeteuk heaves Sungmin across his shoulder, and begins to carry him back. "No one should stay trapped in the beginning."
Sungmin wakes up, cold and exhausted...
He searches his mind but finds nothing.