Promises, Promises

“No… no, no, no…” Junsu shook his head, holding tight to Hyo Won. He could hardly breathe past the clenching of his heart and the tightness in his chest. His breaths came up harsh and shuddering as he suffocated on the weight of his fear. Physically, he shook from the effort of trying to hold it all together but he was failing miserably and he knew it. It wasn’t fair. This wasn’t how it was supposed to turn out. Hyo Won was supposed to get better, he was supposed to leave that horrible affliction behind and start living and be happy and… and… not… die.

The hope was fading fast, too fast for Junsu to collect it and try to see things with his usual brand of optimism. Now he had to stare it in the face, the way Hyo Won changed, just the way that he said he would. Hyo Won knew it was going to happen and he warned Junsu. He warned him so many times but Junsu was so stubborn, so sure that he could change his fate simply by virtue of being there. Stupidly, he thought if Hyo Won loved him enough, it would keep him here, as if it could keep the darkness at bay, as if love eclipsed everything else.

“Hyo Won…” His voice was unsteady, cracking like his heart. Even though Hyo Won was holding him back, he could feel it, too, the way he had to fight to keep the claws from sinking in. He could feel the tension in his body. He could even feel the muscles spasms as Hyo Won fought for control over the darkness inside him. It was so hard to look at him like that, staring up at him, pleading with his entire body. For a couple crazy heartbeats, he wanted it to happen, for Hyo Won to rip into him and kill him on the spot, just to make the ache stop. But then where would that leave Hyo Won?

His lower lip trembled as he tried to speak again but he could speak. Nothing coherent passed his lips, just a harsh choking sob before he leaned in and squeezed his eyes shut. He kissed Hyo Won, shivering. He stroked the side of his face. And with his other hand, he reached out and grabbed the gun. Cold. Metal. He was warned, so he knew what he was getting into. He promised Hyo Won he could do it. He promised that it was worth it just to be with him. He promised him.

“…I love you… Hyo Won.”

He pulled the trigger.

Rachel Aseltine

R.A. Aseltine is an author and roleplayer living in California with her husband, guinea pig, and five cats.

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