Word count: 1,313 (totally didn't do that on purpose re:Kyu. 8D; )
KyuHyun had terrible posture.
Really, he had never noticed it before joining Super Junior (you learn this on some quiet night months later when he feels comfortable enough to speak freely and you’re more then willing to listen), not being self conscious about his physical being one bit until then. He never felt that he was horribly unattractive, though no prince charming either. But, still, it would suffice to say that this was a very clear fact. Joining the band had changed all of that, of course, starting from day one when the nervous boy introduced himself to you all with a small, stiff bow, murmuring his name and a short, clearly memorized introduction. The hardest part of all to watch, you decided, was when he did his best not to flinch away from those scrutinizing looks and hushed, silent (yet still so easy to make out) whispers, assumptions being made that he would have to prove wrong over and over again before his worth was truly known.
What had caught your attention the most about him though was that tiny flash of defiance and determination in his eyes on that first night after being introduced. To you, it didn’t mingle well with that charming baby-face of his, and yet it suited him perfectly. Little did you know that it would be weeks before you would have the opportunity to see it again.
The first few months weren’t easy for him to endure and this is apparent to everyone, earning sympathy from a few, yourself included though you’d never outwardly show it. You were sure pity was the last thing he needed at a time like this. On the other hand, from others he received nothing but jeers and whispers behind his back, maybe not necessarily from those in your own group, but other trainees that didn’t quite make the cut because of him. It seemed like a near constant and brutal process for a while, especially when the fans and antis started to make their disapproval know; that, you decided, probably hurt the most. Even unintentional criticism had its affects on KyuHyun, but the boy did little more then smile and laugh it off, maybe throwing in a ‘what-can-you-do’ sort of shrug along the way….
…and it wasn’t until that night that you found him on the roof at some ungodly hour in the morning, after an impulse bed-check showed that he was missing, that you realized what it all had been doing to him. Because, lo’ and behold, there he sat, legs crossed and ever slouched back pressed against the small, two foot wall surrounding the ledge of the roof.
To this day you remember how cautiously you approached him, unsure of what to make of the sight before you, heartbreaking and hauntingly beautiful at the same time. Head tilted back and eyes to the sky, you could do little more but hold your breath and admire him as he sat there, the stars reflecting in his eyes and city lights illuminating his tear-stained face.
“Isn’t it beautiful, hyung?” he asked without even so much as a flinch or glance in your direction when you sat down next to him and he continued to gaze out at the night, a gentle smile gracing his lips. To this day, you’re not completely sure if he knew it was you specifically as everyone was his hyung, but in you’re gut, you knew. And you nodded even though he couldn’t see it with his eyes turned to the sky, leaving it at that, silent as he began to open up for the first time about family, friends…everything that everyone always asked and he played off with a shrug, that defiant glint in his eyes from weeks before peeking through every now and then.
It was that night that he told you that he was going to change and, true to his word, he did. Everything changed; his hair, his weight, his clothing right down to the eye surgery that he denies even to this very day. His excessively quiet misdemeanor was long gone, helping him to fit in at least.
And finally, all that was left was that posture of his.
Of course, that was before that fateful day that left him bruised and broken in the hospital for weeks, verging on months. But, if nothing else, the boy was stubborn and you all knew it, though the scoldings from JungSu and management about pushing himself too hard did little to deter his determination…and you couldn’t help but encourage it, earning you just as many scoldings in the long run.
“…I think I’m done changing, hyung,” you hear him murmur behind a hand of cards one day as he stares at them hard enough in concentration to bore a hole through them all, determined to beat you this time. It had been one of your routine visits to the hospital and all he wanted to do was go outside and play cards… and who were you to deny him, really? Of course, you just stare at him for a second or two before grinning in that lecherous way that you do, sending him a shrug as you lay down your hand, watching his face fall at the sight of your cards. “Yah, that’s not a good idea, kiddo. If you do that, you may never finish growing up.”
But, of course, he does one day, and so do you, two, three, four years down the line. And before you know it, ten years have gone by and you’re both on your way to HyukJae’s for one of your Super Junior reunions. You had all decided on this tradition after your last performance as a thirteen member band, each member hosting it a different year. It had all started as an unofficial/informal sort of gathering, starting fist at DongHae’s and then at RyeoWook’s; everything seemed to just take off from there.
In that time, Kyu had sprouted up another couple of inches, managed to go from a beanpole to being decently built and his voice had gotten deeper, which you had sworn up and down wasn’t possible when his voice started to change again. Though, he wasn’t able to fight off facial hair for very long (much to his chagrin and your amusement). Finally, he had turned into that prince charming he never thought he could be. You hadn’t faired too badly yourself, as well built as you ever were, though Kyu swears up and down that you have a bald spot…twerp.
Even after all of those years though, that damn back of his still had its ever present crook in it. There were times when it bothered you, irked you to the point where you had to bite your lip until it bled to not say anything, almost wanting to beg him to get it ‘fixed’. Then again, there were times when it never crossed your mind, like when you both would sit out on the balcony, back to back, and just read quietly or listen to a new album late into the evening. The one time you didn’t seem to mind it at all and were actually amused by the thought of it more then anything was when you had his back to the mattress, making it arch in a much more graceful way, the thought of it making you smirk in such a way that he would permanently label you as a pervert for it early on in your relationship.
But, you decide as you both walked out of the apartment you shared on your way to the party, hands brushing lightly together as you walked, stealing sidelong glances at each other as though you were still in your teens, that a slightly quirked back was the price you had to pay when carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders.