Disclaimer: I am not associated with SME in any way. I do not own SHINee. This is just for fun.
Summary: Minho has planned how to pop the question to Key for months, but when it finally happens it doesn't go at all as planned.
A/N: This oneshot is set in the Five Days to Fall 'verse. You don't need to read that to understand this though - I figure it can stand on it's own as a somewhat longer drabble. Though you'll be horribly spoiled about how the longer fic ends of course... XD
I know I promised you guys a sequel, and this is sort of it, or a part of it. I might return to this 'verse to write snippets like these sometimes, instead of making something equally as long as the original, because I don't really have plot enough for anything that long.
This started out intended to be just a drabble, inspired by Minho "proposing" to Key onstage last year. I wanted to write something then but didn't have time (or inspiration) until now. I hope you enjoy :) And I guess this once again proves how much I fail at keeping it short...
Oh, and excuse the cheese >.<
THE BEST LAID PLANS...
(A FIVE DAYS TO FALL DRABBLE)
Since Kibum does everything in style, whether it’s dressing Minho or himself, or restyling their apartment (Minho considers it ‘theirs’ now, and has been ever since Kibum moved in three years ago) Minho thinks the proposal has to be done in style too.
He spends months thinking over how to go about it, selecting the perfect rings and planning the event in detail, which he has decided is to take place on Kibum’s birthday in late September.
Forgoing wilder ideas like proposing while they’re rock climbing or jumping out of an airplane at 30 000 feet – knowing full well he’ll have trouble getting Kibum into an airplane in the first place if it involves any kind of sport-like activity – he has settled on a nice, fancy dinner and then, after, he will lure Kibum with him to his office downtown – which happens to be in one of the highest buildings in Seoul – saying he forgot some important papers there earlier in the day.
Then, after some serious huffing and eye-rolling on Kibum’s part, he’ll get Kibum up on the roof somehow (the finer points of the plan still need some work) and up there, with all of Seoul blinking around them he’ll get down on his knees, haul out the ring and propose. There might also be a string quartet involved, he hasn’t decided on that yet. Either way it’s going to be very special.
That is why it comes as a total surprise to Minho as he blurts out the proposal one very ordinary Tuesday morning in the bathroom, several weeks before Kibum’s birthday.
They’ve been particularly stressed this morning. Eun Mi is still recovering from a bout of stomach flu and not very keen to go back to school even though the doctors have said she’s no longer contagious. Both her appas are still recovering from a week of constant night watch by her bedside and neither of them is in their very best form.
It takes a lot for them both to control their tempers and not snap at each-other for little things like not putting the toilet seat back down, leaving dirty chopsticks on the table, or spilling coffee on important papers, or chastice Eun Mi when she tries to feign sicker than she is. Because staying home in her pajamas and having Kibum fussing over her and reading to her and making her chicken soup to settle her stomach is way better than having to dress and go to school and learn how to count and how write.
Eventually though someone’s about to snap, and this time it’s Kibum. Since losing his patience around Eun Mi is not something he does very often, both Minho and his daughter are taken by surprise. They’re in the kitchen when it happens and Kibum almost immediately excuses himself with a heavy, frustrated sigh and leaves the room. Minho and Eun Mi exchange a long look across the kitchen table.
“You better do as he says,” Minho says.
Eun Mi nods gravely, puts the phone she’s used to distract herself from breakfast down, and slips down from her stool, heading to her room to get dressed for school.
After three years Minho knows Kibum pretty well and even though he might sometimes bite when provoked Minho also knows guilt is eating him up right now. If there’s someone he really doesn’t want to snap at it’s Eun Mi. So Minho goes looking for Kibum and finds him pretty soon, in the bathroom, in front of the mirror, dabbing make-up on under his eyes to hide the worst of the dark circles.
“I’m sorry,” he says, lowering the make-up pad as soon as he’s made aware of Minho’s presence in the doorway. “I shouldn’t have yelled at her like that, I’m tired and—“
“Will you marry me?” Minho cuts him off. He hasn’t planned to say it, the words just seem to jump out of his mouth seeing how wrecked and worried Kibum looks.
Kibum drops the pad in surprise. As he turns around to face Minho he knocks over the toiletry bag that is precariously placed on the edge of the sink and sends all his make-up articles cascading onto the tiled floor. He mutters a curse and crouches down to assemble them again.
Even though he certainly didn’t mean for it to happen like this, and even though he can understand some surprise on Kibum’s part, Minho finds himself a little displeased with Kibum’s lack of response.
“Didn’t you hear me?” he says.
“Of course I heard you,” Kibum grits out, picking away at the items on the floor. “And I decided you must be joking because you can’t honestly mean you chose now of all times to ask me this?” He throws a now broken eyeliner pen somewhat vehemently into the bag. “I haven’t slept properly in days, I haven’t had time to shower, my hair is a total mess. I look like I rose from the grave...”
Minho bites back on saying something truly cheesy like “You’ll always look beautiful to me,” because even if it’s true he knows it will only cause Kibum to snort right now. So instead he says: “But if we assume I wasn’t joking, if you’d slept and showered, then what would your answer be?”
Kibum looks at him like he’s stupid. It’s a look that Minho is quite used to being on the receiving end of by now. He knows not to be hurt, but to take it in stride.
“I’d tell you your attempt at romance was sorely lacking, that’s what I’d say.”
“Well I had planned to take you out to a fancy romantic dinner, the whole works, but now I guess I’ll have to think of something else for a birthday present...”
Kibum looks up from the items on the floor. “You were planning on proposing to me on my birthday?”
Minho nods and shrugs a little. “I’ve got the rings and everything.”
Kibum stares at him. “You aren’t joking,” he says. “You are actually serious about this.”
Minho makes a gesture with his hands out, palms up. Kibum stands up, then he crosses the bathroom floor over to where Minho is standing. Minho is fully prepared to be kissed senseless so the slap he receives takes him completely by surprise.
“You idiot!” Kibum says. “Not like this! Now I’m going to remember this day forever.”
“Um...” Minho says, reaching up to rub his sore cheek: For being so skinny Kibum’s slap has quite the sting to it. “Isn’t that kind of the point?”
Kibum huffs out a breath. “It’s supposed to be a happy memory, not one of vomit, and little sleep and the day I lost my temper and yelled at Eun Mi.” He sighs loudly and Minho is prepared to take it all back, say it was a mistake, when Kibum huffs again and says: “So where’s the ring then? Now that you’ve ruined it I might as well see it...”
“Are you quite sure—”
Kibum cuts Minho of with another “are you stupid?” look. Minho shuts his mouth, turns and walks out of the bathroom with Kibum close on his tail.
Eun Mi is completely dressed for school now and impatiently waiting for them in the hallway, phone back in her hand. It seems Kibum’s temper turn had some effect because she’s never dressed this quickly before, not unless there were promises of ice cream in the park.
“Just wait there,” Minho says before she can pipe up in protest. “We’ll be right back with you.”
“You’re keeping it in the bedroom?” Kibum remarks as he follows Minho into the room. “I could have just found it by accident.”
“No, you couldn’t,” Minho says. He opens the closet and reaches into the deepest, murkiest depths of it and pulls his gym bag out.
Kibum scrunches up his nose. “You’re keeping them in there? Well, alright, you’re right. I would never have found them. I’d rather die than touch whatever smelly, sweaty things it is you keep in there.”
Minho doesn’t answer, he just smiles, because he already knew it was the perfect hiding place. He gets down on his knees on the floor beside the bag and pulls at the zipper. The box with the ring is at the bottom and with this in his hands he turns around to face Kibum. He doesn’t get up from the floor but remains on his knees. Popping the lid open he looks up at Kibum and asks him again:
“Kim Kibum, will you marry me?”
Kibum’s eyes are darting between the ring in the box and Minho’s face. He doesn’t say anything for a long time and Minho’s confidence is quickly faltering. He had been so sure at the store – he had spent hours in different jewellery shops and looked at thousands of rings (or at least that’s what it felt like) when he happened on this tiny antique store and knew it was the one the second he saw it on display underneath the glass top counter.
It’s an old white gold ring, from the 1920’s, an art deco ring, thin with a geometrical motif - both masculine and feminine at the same time. Minho felt instantly it would fit Kibum perfectly. But now, looking at Kibum’s disbelieving face he’s not so sure anymore.
“You... you bought this for me?” Kibum says.
“Yes...?” Minho says, fully prepared to recoil if Kibum means to slap him again.
What he isn’t prepared for is Kibum starting to cry. His eyes are suddenly brimming over with tears and he has to sit down on the edge of the bed and wipe at his cheeks.
They both ignore the impatient “Aaaaaappa. Come on! Weren't we supposed to go?” coming from the hallway.
Not really sure what to do Minho scoots a little closer to the bed, still on his knees, and puts a hand on Kibum’s thigh.
“Um, Kibum, are you okay?”
Kibum wipes once more at his face, clears his throat and says: “It’s beautiful.”
Minho breathes out in relief.
“So...?” he says.
Kibum laughs out loud when he realises Minho is still waiting for an answer. “Yes,” he says. “The answer is ‘yes’.” He amends: “You complete and utter idiot.”
Smiling so much he thinks he’s going to pull something Minho takes the ring from the tiny blue box and slips it onto Kibum’s waiting finger. It’s a little too big for him so they’re going to have to resize it later, but Kibum doesn’t seem to care as he brings his hand up before his face to inspect it from all angles.
He flexes his fingers and sends Minho a warm, brilliant smile over the top of them and all the tiredness of seven days with no sleep seems to melt right off him. Minho can only return the smile twice as broadly. He sits up a bit and kisses Kibum on the lips and as Kibum returns the kiss with passion, locking his head in place with his ring-bearing hand, he wonders if getting engaged is enough of a reason to get the day off from work.
They’re interrupted by someone loudly clearing their throat in the doorway to the bedroom.
“What are you two doing?"
Only the voice of a nosy nine-year-old can pull Kibum and Minho apart at that moment and they do so very, very reluctantly.
Minho finds himself missing the days when his daughter's reaction to seeing them kiss was to burst into giggles and run for cover.
Kibum flashes her a brilliant smile and holds out his hand with the ring towards her. It takes Eun Mi a moment to notice the addition to his finger then she utters a loud squeak and starts jumping up and down.
“I knew it!” she calls. “I knew it would happen!”
“Well I certainly didn’t,” says Kibum, looking at Minho a little pointedly. But the edge of the look and his words are taken away by the smile he can’t seem to hold back on.
“Oh, come on,” says Minho. “It can’t have come as a total surprise.”
“It’s been three years,” says Kibum. “I was starting to despair a little.”
“Well you could have asked me too, you know,” Minho says. Kibum only gives him that tired “you’re an idiot” look again.
“I can’t wait to tell the people in school,” Eun Mi says. “They’re going to be so excited!”
“Erm,” says Minho. “Are you sure telling them is such a great idea?”
The majority of the teachers and the moms and dads at Eun Mi’s school are young and modern enough to accept a same-sex couple, but a select few are not, and Minho and Kibum have both heard their fair share of disapproving comments. Not that it bothers them all that much though: It’s easy to ignore the words of some few close-minded idiots when you’re as happy as they are.
“Oh they already know all about you,” says Eun Mi. “I have the handsomest appas in school - everyone’s always so curious about you.”
Minho and Kibum exchange a look.
“I think we’re going to have a talk about what exactly you tell them when we get home again,” Minho says and stands up again, pulling Kibum along with him. He can’t help but squeeze him to his side in a weird half-hug before he lets him go completely.
They sneak as many kisses as they can behind Eun Mi’s back while getting dressed to leave, making it take a lot longer than necessary, though Eun Mi rolling her eyes at them tells them all of them do not go completely unnoticed.
When they finally leave they’re all out the door later than they have ever been and an ordinary morning has just turned into a memorable, and utterly perfect one.
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