Wooyoung cursed. It registers in Junho’s brain and he blinks a few times, staring at the baffled man below him. The personification of rationality has just done something very human-like. He sits back and yet he doesn’t break eye contact. There’s something off and Junho can think of only one thing. “Are you...” he gulps, “Are your powers gone?” Wooyoung shakes his head, but that doesn’t make Junho feel any better. There’s something wrong, yet Wooyoung doesn’t say anything else and it bothers him. “What is it? Tell me!” He’s growing impatient as Wooyoung closes his eyes and opens them slowly, fixing his gaze onto the roof of the cave.
“It’s been disrupted.” His voice wavers slightly, as if it’d be hard to comprehend his own words.
“Disrupted…? What?” Junho’s knees dig deeper into the sand when he leans forward, but Wooyoung’s eyes are still locked on the previous dark brown patch above him.
“My energy; my controls; my birthmark. Everything that I am.” Wooyoung starts breathing faster and Junho’s worried. Within moments his chest is heaving quickly and Wooyoung grasps onto his injured hip, frowning painfully. His moan sounds hurtful, too, and it sends shivers through Junho’s body. Sympathy surges through him as the man beside him has difficulty controlling whatever he has inside of him.
Suddenly, Wooyoung screams and rips off his shoulder armour, throwing it with such force that it actually sticks into the wall of the rock. The more Junho looks at Wooyoung, the more apparent it is that the super-human is getting out of control. He’s almost choking as his chest heaves up and down, and Wooyoung grips onto his dishevelled hair.
“Hey!” Junho yells, but Wooyoung doesn’t react. “Wooyoung!” He tries again and the latter just glances at him with a sorrowful look and turns away with his eyes closed. Junho doesn’t kneel anymore as he moves forward and touches Wooyoung’s cheeks, his strong hands imprisoning the super human’s head into his warm palms. “Open your eyes!” Junho demands and Wooyoung obliges. “Hey, look at me!” Wooyoung does and Junho swallows his worries down.
He’s got Wooyoung’s attention now, but his breathing still isn’t intact. Junho leans closer and locks their eyes. “Listen to me. Stay calm, everything’s okay.” Junho touches Wooyoung’s chest rests his hand on it gently. “You’re scared now, and that’s completely normal. Don’t let it take over you. I’m here and I’ll help you. Do you understand this?” Junho sees Wooyoung nod faintly and smiles. “Just think of something nice: A bucket of ice cream… kittens, maybe, I don't know. I‘m not sure if those exist in your planet, but they’re nice. Cute little balls of fur.” Junho’s left palm senses Wooyoung’s chest slowing down and he gives the super human another reassuring smile. “See, it’s all good, right?”
“When you smile like this, it all seems to be fine.” Wooyoung replies without a thought.
Junho’s surprised by this, but he laughs as he pulls away. “You don’t even know what that sounds like... Well, if it helps you I don’t mind it. But we still need to talk about your injury.” Junho sits back. “From what I gather your emotions are off. Am I right?”
Wooyoung sighs and Junho knows he was right. “All of us have two birthmarks when we’re born. The second one works like a back-up barrier.”
“It doesn’t let you lose your power?”
“No, it’s not like that. Even if both birthmarks became damaged, I wouldn’t lose my powers. As long as I’m alive, the energy I have will be there as well. You see,” Wooyoung exhales, because not only is he explaining things to Junho, he's also trying to accept his own explanation too. That in itself is quite difficult. “Birthmarks are like limiters. They regulate my energy flow. And since my birthmark is damaged... My limiter doesn’t allow me to control myself that well anymore. My emotions are leaking out alongside my energy. I’m wasting it, but not in the sense that I'd lose it at some point.”
“So if your second birthmark gets damaged too…?”
“I’d be a mess. I’d be shedding my energy – powers, strength, emotions in all directions– without even realising it! I’d be like a ferocious animal that can’t contain itself.” Wooyoung shudders and Junho knows that it’s a tough one. To someone who has never experienced emotions, this could be a whole new scary world, as he has no idea what emotions are and how to deal with them. Wooyoung might burn out and Junho can’t let that happen.
“You can count on me, Wooyoung. You won’t become a raging, powerful psycho, because I’ll be there to stop you.” Junho squeezes his shoulder and gets up. “We have to stay here till tomorrow morning and get some rest. Especially you.” Junho glances at his jeans, which are far less of a white colour now as they had been decorated with blood. “You ruined my new jeans. I have spare shorts, so I forgive you this time.”
“Sorry...” Wooyoung looks like a kicked puppy and Junho’s definitely not used to that face, which makes him feel worse than he should.
He digs through the backpack and finds his cold-resistant foil sheet. It’s fairly chilly and the night’s about to consume the unfortunate day. Junho wraps himself in that silver material and sits calmly, but Wooyoung’s pitiful expression catches him by surprise. “What?”
“You know, I actually feel cold.” Junho pays attention to Wooyoung’s arms, which are hugging himself as he lies peacefully. He also notices his goose-skin and erected nipples.
“Yeah, I can see that...” Junho exhales and moves towards the super human, ready to restore some of the humanity that’s left within him. He lies beside Wooyoung and covers them both with the foil. “I suppose you can’t control your temperature.”
“Unfortunately... Sorry...” Wooyoung’s meek voice irritates Junho.
“Okay, stop being so pitiful, it disgusts me. You can control your emotions better than that.” He snaps and turns away from Wooyoung. Seconds later Junho’s body twitches. “What are you doing?” He’s pretty sure Wooyoung’s spooning him, and Junho’s heart beats faster as Wooyoung hugs his waist.
“I feel really cold.” Junho is aware of that because Wooyoung’s skin has never felt so cool before. “Probably because I lost blood. I really can’t stay away from your warmth.” His breath makes the hair on Junho's neck stand on end.
“Fine, fine. Just don’t try anything funny.” Junho closes his eyes, trying his best to ignore this new emotional and childish Wooyoung.
Junho turns around quickly and bumps his nose into Wooyoung’s. He stares into his dark orbs, and it’s really difficult to act that stern when you’re looking at someone who’s so lost. He really can’t blame Wooyoung. Junho calms down because at least one person has to be responsible for emotion management here. “Nevermind, just sleep.” He turns away and allows Wooyoung to hug him closer. It actually feels nice and Junho falls asleep immediately.
Even when he’s half awake, Junho can feel how sore his body is. His head is resting on his arm and Junho’s not that determined to open his eyes yet as he groans into his skin. He feels a welcome rhythmical breeze on his face and thinks that it’s weird, because it shouldn’t be windy inside the cave. Junho frowns, but decides to open his eyes in the end.
A pair of cheerful eyes meets his and Junho pulls back quickly. “What the hell! Why are you staring at me from so up close?”
“You’re very handsome. I wanted to appreciate it.” Wooyoung smiles and Junho feels like someone switched the real Wooyoung with this overly-attached, blunt stalker.
“I didn’t think I’d say this, but I miss the asshole you. You just can’t speak like this and expect me to be happy to know you’re watching me sleep like a psycho. That’s not cool, man.” Junho sits up and Wooyoung does the same.
“I thought that compliments were a good way to interact with you, seeing as you’re so proud of who you are.” Wooyoung shrugs, and Junho chuckles. Maybe Wooyoung isn’t the lost cause yet. They just need more time.
“Just try to be... normal. Have some common sense and everything will be fine. The problem is you don’t know what common sense is...” Junho sighs. He doesn’t want to wear the dirty jeans anymore, so he jumps on his feet, takes off his pants and grabs black shorts. “I haven’t asked this yet, but where are we going? To your spaceship? Hey, eyes up here.” Junho points his fingers at his face, a bit disturbed by Wooyoung’s intense gaze on his bottom. He pulls up his shorts hurriedly and Wooyoung looks at his eyes, smiling.
“Star gates. Can I touch it? It looks… very soft…” Wooyoung reaches his hands towards Junho’s butt, but the latter slaps them away.
“No, you can't touch it. And what do you mean by star gates? Hey, look at my face when I’m talking to you!” Junho squats in front of him just to save his butt from further visual and physical assault. The variety of Wooyoung’s emotions seems to become a serious challenge for Junho. Squatting helps, and Wooyoung gazes at his face longingly.
“We don’t want to get unnecessary attention from the invaders, so we use star gates for travelling very long distances. There are 7 of them in this planet. The closest one to us is in India, and that’s our final destination. No, but really, can I touch it?” The super human proceeds reaching out his hand.
“Wooyoung!” Junho yells this time and grabs his shoulders. “I don’t know if I should be flattered or not, but you must control your arousal, okay?”
“Arousal?” He asks like a school kid and Junho’s temple twitches as he looks down, sighing.
“You said sex isn’t a problem for you, but you don’t know what arousal is? How do you mate with your women, then? You have to feel something to get yourself up!” Junho states matter-of-factly.
“Well, I don’t know. I haven’t been assigned to the reproductive department. I’m a warrior.” Wooyoung shrugs.
“Reproductive what?!” Junho yelps.
“It’s a department where the chosen ones mate with their assigned partner. It’s true - we don’t need feelings for that, because we get pills.” He explains it as if it wasn’t anything odd.
Junho’s brain was close to exploding. It sounds like a prostitution farm. Scratch that, a reproductive alien farm for super humans who have no feelings, yet mate for the sake of reproduction and... Junho’s eyes roll to the back of his head. He thinks he’s going to melt just by imagining a conveyor belt for literally fucking. Which also, that means that Wooyoung’s a virgin warrior alien.
When you think you’ve seen everything there’s always something that surpasses everything in your imagination.
“I wonder if you know what porn is...” Junho mumbles to himself.
“It was included in our Earthlings’ study course. Heterosexual and homosexual.” Junho stares at him with a defeated expression and shakes his head. This isn’t right. These super humans are just...
“Alright. That’s enough for today. You super humans are messed up. Let’s just forget everything and get going.” Junho packs his belongings quickly and puts his backpack on. When he looks at Wooyoung, he seems to be deep in thought. “Are you okay?”
Wooyoung looks up. “I don’t know... I feel empty when I don’t understand what you mean. This is very confusing. My amplitude of emotions is too wide and it’s hard to deal with it. I can’t define so many things.”
“You’ll get used to that. It takes time. Shall we go now?” Junho reaches his hand and Wooyoung takes it, allowing the latter to help him up. He groans in pain and almost succumbs in Junho’s embrace, but Junho helps to keep him steady. Junho glances at his bandage and realises that it has to be changed to avoid infection. “Stay still, I’ll take a look at your wound and change the bandage.”
“Okay.” Wooyoung holds onto Junho’s shoulder as the smaller man kneels and works on his wound.
Junho frowns when he sees it, but he’s glad it looks better than yesterday. It seems like Wooyoung’s healing faster than a regular human being, but there are no changes on his ruined birthmark, and Junho assumes it’s not going to heal itself. This is more than just a simple tissue. This birthmark that works as a limiter is a much more complex thing. Junho applies some ointment and changes the bandage slowly to not cause anymore pain. Wooyoung ruffles his curly hair and surprises him, but Junho doesn’t say anything against it. He decides it’s necessary for Wooyoung’s learning process.
When he’s done, Junho looks up and smiles. “You’re good to go.”
“Thank you.” Wooyoung’s voice sounds honest and Junho feels warm inside when Wooyoung keeps on stroking his hair gently. This is Wooyoung’s expression of gratitude, Junho thinks, and stands up, helping the latter out of the cave.
They both look at the vultures devouring their enemies as they pass them. The view’s not the prettiest one, so Junho just looks away and asks Wooyoung to do the same. There’s no benefit in witnessing a wild feast. He releases Wooyoung seeing how he’s regaining the strength but walks close by just in case. The airbike is still invisible when they halt in front of nothing. They stand like this for a while, but nothing’s appearing as Wooyoung keeps his arm straight in the level of his chest. Junho stares at his companion, noticing how tense his muscles are and he can only imagine what’s going on in his mind.
Wooyoung’s energy flow is inconsistent. That's enough to make him realise his energy inside the airbike won’t respond without enough effort and control. Junho watches Wooyoung closely and he hears the super human’s breathing getting faster as he’s clearly feeling impatient. “It’s okay. Compose yourself.”
Wooyoung’s eyes shift left and Junho feels like he’s just got stabbed by that cold glance. He has a foreboding that whatever’s going to happen will require his interference. He notices how Wooyoung’s knuckles turn white and his fist looks like a rock pulsing with hot blood. His body starts shaking slightly and Wooyoung grits his teeth. All his efforts to control the powers are met with no result and Wooyoung screams, stomps his feet onto the dusty ground and leaves a relatively deep mark, revealing how strong the super human is. And if it gets out of control, Junho’s not so sure he could actually do something about it. His own powers are limited.
Wooyoung closes his eyes and tries again, but he’s too distracted by his failure and inability to make his damn airbike become visible. “Fuck!” He yells, startling Junho, and lunges forward to the rock pillar close to him and kicks it with so much violence it starts crumbling like a pile of boxes. “Fuck!” Wooyoung screams and continues his assault, making the hole in the rock deeper.
Junho doesn’t know what to do. He’s genuinely terrified, because he’s no match for a raging Wooyoung. He has to do something quickly to stop Wooyoung from injuring himself further. There has to be a way to calm him down.
Junho runs to him, and his heartbeat is frantic when he grabs Wooyoung’s face, pressing his lips against the latter’s. Junho kisses him hard and stares into Wooyoung’s staggered eyes, however, there’s no spurn. Wooyoung just clings onto Junho’s shirt and his body becomes immobile when Junho’s lips move against his.
Junho doesn’t know if it’s working or not, because Wooyoung closes his eyes and gives in. Junho can't think at all, because his own eyes are closed and there’s something so alluring about Wooyoung that he finds he cannot stop kissing him. Junho holds his neck tighter and deepens this ferocious kiss, invading the taller male’s mouth with his tongue.
Junho feels how Wooyoung’s skin gets hotter. He swears he can also feel some sort of an energy flowing inside of him as they’re kissing, but Junho’s mind is too hazy to think more about it, his fingers digging deeper into the super human’s neck and head, bringing their mouths as close as possible. There’s nothing gentle about it, both of them indulging in the primal feeling of lust.
One of Wooyoung’s hands hug Junho’s waist as the other one travels down his back and finally gets a hold of that the soft flesh that’s covered by shorts. It works like a wakeup call and Junho withdraws his bruised lips from Wooyoung’s.
He wants more. Wooyoung kisses him again, but Junho pulls away and holds onto the taller male’s neck to stop him. They’re out of breath and Junho presses his forehead against Wooyoung’s, staring into his eyes. “No. We should stop this.”
“I don’t want to,” Wooyoung answers weakly.
“Wooyoung, you’re not the only one confused here right now. And with the last bits of my sanity left, I should tell you that we must get your control to a decent level, otherwise we’ll be in a huge trouble. We can’t stay in one place for a few days.” Junho licks his lips as he recedes from Wooyoung slightly, but the latter catches his hand and gazes at him with a determined expression.
“Just let me hold onto your hand. I think it should help. I don’t know why, but having direct body contact with you puts me at ease.” Wooyoung keeps staring at Junho expectantly.
Junho smiles faintly and doesn’t reject him. “Whatever works for you.” He nods and Wooyoung breaks their eye contact.
He holds onto Junho’s hand tighter and reaches his right arm forward. Junho looks at Wooyoung’s profile and notices the tattoo on his neck flashes, and a moment later, there’s his airbike in front of them. Wooyoung instantly throws his arms around Junho’s neck and squishes him in a tight embrace.
The feeling of accomplishment surges through that hug and Junho buries his nose into Wooyoung’s neck, smiling. He wonders if their chemistry has to do anything with this success, however, he’s pretty sure there’s so much changing inside Wooyoung and Junho realises there’s something changing within himself as well.
“Okay,” Junho pulls away. “Let’s learn how to control your airbike now. It’ll take some time, but it’s all good, isn’t it?”
“I’ll have to rely on your energy again.” Wooyoung grins.
“I realised it’s possible to borrow some of your strong will. I’m lacking it and you have plenty. And maybe because my birthmark is damaged I can let your energy flow through me. I never knew that that was possible.” Wooyoung touches Junho’s chest. “Your energy is raw. It triggers mine.”
“Talk about good chemistry...” Wooyoung nods to Junho’s remark and grins wider. Together they can make this work.
It takes some time to make the airbike fly, but they succeed in the end. After countless attempts Wooyoung seems to get a hang of it as Junho sits behind him with his palms glued to the super human’s naked shoulders. Their trip isn’t very steady as Wooyoung’s emotion and energy level jumps up and down, making the airbike halt. Nevertheless, Junho can see the improvement.
And there’s nothing that his smile couldn’t do. Wooyoung’s weak against it, his rage’s always defeated by something as pure and simple as Junho’s lips which curl up quickly whenever Wooyoung starts to lose his temper, and that bright smile conceals his darker emotions.
This day passes too fast and they’re forced to end their erratic trip. Junho tells Wooyoung to go inside another cave as he decides to climb up the rock and scan the area himself. It’s weird that they haven’t met any water-carriers yet, as they’re getting closer to the end of the desert. Junho stares at the sunset and wonders if the rest of their trip will require more injuries. He hopes it’s not going to happen, but he has to be prepared all the time. And before anything bad happens, Junho expects Wooyoung’s emotions will be fine.
Junho also worries about the result of this journey. If they do reach star gates and travel to Wooyoung’s planet, then what is it going to be like there? Only now is he realising how little he knows about Wooyoung’s world-- but what he does know, he dislikes. Living in that planet sounds like living in a monotonous, yet advanced, clock factory.
And when they reach it – will Wooyoung’s birthmark get fixed? Junho scratches his arm nervously and looks at his shoes. Does he really want to get Wooyoung fixed?
He hears footsteps behind him and sighs. “I thought I told you to go inside that cave. You need more rest.”
“Very masterful. So, he chose you?” Junho turns around quickly and the first thing he notices is a black tattoo on the stranger’s jaw, which goes down to his neck and collarbone.
There’s no doubt about it, Junho thinks. He must be related to Wooyoung. But why is he here?