Title: I saw you coincidentally; a 4 hour bus ride and a Toffee Crisp bar
Genre: Romance, Fluff
A/N: Inspired by this video and my love for Henhae, as well as a TOFFEECRISP BAR which my friend sent back from UK for Xmas which is positively gorgeous;) Merry Xmas champagneshots I hope this satisfies your fandom for now:)
SUMMARY: Both Henry and Donghae think they're spending their Christmas alone this year.
Henry stands furtively at the edge of an old tar paved road which ran in both directions, large enough for two cars to pass through. A questionable aluminum plate mounted on a weather-worn pole stands just a few feet away from him. Behind him is an unevenly crafted stretch of what looks like a fence separating fields of elephant grass from the old road.
The heat is sweltering but he waits, until a clattering heap of metal rumbles along. The sign on the bus reads 'Seoul' and he flags it down, one hand reaching for lose change in his pocket. He has just enough for a single trip. Heaving a blue nylon guitar bag behind him, he clambers up the steps bringing with him a trail of dust, much to the disgust of the bus driver.
There's only one other person on the bus. He's fast asleep, dreaming on the corner of row twelve and seat seven.
Henry seats himself two rows in front the other and turns up the volume on his iPod so as to drown out the clattering of the old bus. He plucks an air guitar to the music, his left hand deftly fingering a-mile-a-minute chords at the drop of a hat.
It's about half an hour and Henry's still on his air guitar. He realizes that it's going to take another three and a half hours before he gets to Seoul. Just in time to grab a bite before his performance. He figures he should just catch some shut eye when he hears a low sound over the heavy drum from his Beats.
"-ey, got a --ite?" Henry lowers his Beats and turns around to face the ragged stranger who had woken from his slumber.
"Sorry, are you talking to me?" Henry is slightly scared, and the quiver in his voice betrays the otherwise stoic front he tries to put on.
"Duh, who else would I be talking to? So you got anything to eat or not?" He's in a somewhat drunken state, Clean but definitely not sober.
Henry reaches into his pocket and pulls out an orange chocolate bar. It was the last of his favorite Toffee Crisp bars but he handed it over anyway.
The stranger's fingers fumble clumsily to peel open the bright orange wrapper and he crams the bar into his mouth, crunching on the little rice bubbles inside.
"Yum," he says, the most human noise he's made all day. "Name's Donghae," he initiates, extending a downturned palm across the seat in front of him toward Henry.
Henry grabs Donghae's hand firmly and gives it a quick shake as his mum taught him. "No one wants to shake a dead fish," she used to say. "Henry," he replies.
"Pleasure." As though the angel of sobriety had hit him with some magic dust or something, Donghae jumps up and lands himself on the seat in front of Henry, a smile as wide as the Lunar eclipse he saw the night before. "So, why don't you play on that guitar for real and not" –he does a mock air guitar concerto— "this?”
Henry feels slightly peeved at this point, his feelings bordering on annoyance and interest so he chooses to answer, “maybe later. I’m not an easy show to watch anyway.”
Donghae stifles a burst of laughter through his teeth. Kicking back onto the rest of the seat, his back against the window, he continues to look at Henry, preparing to continue the conversation.
“So what brings you to town on a Christmas eve like this? Shouldn’t you be spending time with your family, having well, I don’t know, some kind of festive dinner or something?” Henry can almost hear the bus driver nodding audibly, wondering what he too, was doing working on Christmas eve.
"Shouldn't you be?" Henry decides that he should drop the bitterness, after all he'd be stuck with this possible maniac for the next three hours or so. "My family's back in Canada. So I'm making money this Christmas." he hesitates awhile, unsure of he should be encouraging the progress of this conversation. 'Oh heck,' he thinks. "And you? Sounds like you had some kind of eve in mind."
"Family either died or never existed. Goodness knows where they are now. Not like I'd care." Donghae points to himself, "orphan." But nonchalantly continues, "so I guess I'm making money this Christmas then."
The rattling of the bus soon becomes an inconsequential buzz to Henry. He looks at Donghae, who is seated in front of him and stating into the distance. He never noticed how Donghae's eyes were hazel and how his profile was a line of perfection. He quickly catches himself when Donghae turns to face him full in the face. 'Ahem' he clears his throat "So what do you do for a living then?”
The smile quickly returns to Donghae, “mostly photography. I’m free-lancing most of the time but this Christmas, Nat-Geo wants me to do a cover for their Christmas special. Just hope the bus gets to town in time for the lights.”
They talk for what feels like hours, their conversation largely dominated with Donghae’s complaints of hunger pangs and Henry’s determination to stop laughing at Donghae’s cuteness each time he made a hungry face.
“So about that song.” Henry finally reaches for his guitar with half an hour left in the ride and the lights of Seoul city flickering in the near distance. This stage isn’t what he has in mind as his first but it feels like it matters the most to him.
He slides his fingers along the fret board, plucking strings with expertise and producing great sounds in vibrato. He sings to Elvis Prestley's “Blue Christmas”, his voice masculine and boyish all at the same time.
You'll be doing all right, with your Christmas of white...
Donghae's tear glands tremble at these words. He feels completely convicted.
But I'll have a blue, blue Christmas.
The song finally ends and Henry’s eyes are wet, his lips still clinging on to the last word, emotion still vibrating in his vocal chords. He closes his eyes, maybe just for the effect that all great musicians who wish to convey a certain sense of being one with the music.
Donghae’s mouth is agape as he applauds the performance. “What, it’s really nothing special,” Henry says with a smirk as he lowers his guitar.
“That was really good. Like reaaaallllyyyyyyy good!” Donghae hasn’t stopped clapping.
“Thanks,” and Henry is literally grinning from ear to ear, unable to hide how ecstatic he is with the approval of the single member of the audience.
He doesn’t know how it happens, or why it does but all that is inconsequential. The next moment he opens his eyes, he finds himself leaning towards Donghae’s, lips touching. He’s close enough to feel Donghae’s eye lashes brush lightly against his cheek, close enough to smell the oak aged port off his skin.
He pulls back hesitantly, just as the bus doors hiss open.
Donghae thinks maybe he was too forward, and clambers to stand up, biting his lips in embarrassment. “I guess I’ll be off then. Happy Christmas.”
He turns to leave, hoping the packing up of his guitar would delay Henry’s departure that will allow him a longer headstart.
But he is stopped by a “Hyung?” which he thinks sounds perfect, “what about that dinner then? I thought you were hungry.”
So Donghae waits for Henry at the front of the bus.
And they think that this may just be the best Christmas ever.