Title: Listen : Whispers
Characters: Kyuhyun, Heechul, Yesung, Siwon, Donghae, Hangeng, Eunhyuk other SJ members might join in soon
Pairings: KyuChul, YeWook, past!HanChul, KyuSung_friendship, SiChul_friendship, Kihae and more to come soon
Genre: AU, Supernatural, Drama, Angst
Word Count : 2,417
Warning : Character death, ghostly apparitions?, mature language
Disclaimer : I own many things, but unfortunately Super Junior isn't one of them.
After the whole ‘ghost’ incident with Heechul, Kyuhyun thought he would be free from all of the craziness and go back to his normal life as a university student. But when he starts to hear whispers again, nothing is as he expects...especially when so much more is at stake this time.
Listen (Part 1) - in Masterlist
Prologue | Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4 | Chapter 5 | Chapter 6 | Chapter 7
It was a rainy day, the skies rumbled overheard to signify the coming of a storm to the otherwise quiet day. Heechul wore black that day. His best friend, the reason he was able to smile and face the world despite the darkness it brings, was gone for eight painful days. Without a goodbye, without a letter, without a warning to all the pain and anger that would come crashing down on him from then on. A pointless argument, a slam on the door, and never returning. He took a particularly big gulp from the glass bottle of cheap alcohol.
Losing his best friend, his love, his everything, was all kinds of pain. The pain you get from paper cuts, the pain you get when you fall from the swing for the first time, the pain that lingers on when someone leaves that gaping hole in your world that makes you worried that you might never be able to close it up again.
“Don’t fuck with me right now, you’re already dead. I’ll make you feel worse than death itself,” he bit the words out furiously when one particularly annoying spirit began tailing him from behind on that quiet and lonely road; the one that no one took; the other turning that didn’t lead to home, the other way that wouldn’t bring him back to Siwon and Donghae’s drumming and pleading voices laced with worry. Sometimes concern can weigh a person down a whole lot more than apathy.
“If you have no news for me, then get the hell away from me.”
The spirit had begun to smell a little bit more menacing, advancing on him even more. “Both your ‘protectors’ are not here, hmm?” The sly voice was a mixture of both a man’s and a woman’s, even sounding like a child at some point. He quickened his steps in big outraged strides, the all-too-familiar sickening and nauseating feeling beginning to creep in on him sooner than he thought. This was not a strong one, but it was affecting him even more in his intoxicated state.
If only Hankyung still here, if only he was still here to shield him from bad spirits…But no, he wasn’t.
Heechul turned around and smashed the bottle of liquor at the spirit, raining shards of glass on the pavement. A cry of surprise rang with an echo, but not from the now-gone spirit. Feverishly he peered inside the dark alley on his left where he thought he heard the voice just now.
A boy was slumped down beside a trash can; sobbing into his own arms wound tightly around his knees. What was a kid like that doing in a dirty alley? Heechul squinted harder through the rain just as he was about to turn away and leave.
Something, no, someone was hovering around the boy’s shoulders. The outline was wispy and indistinct, a blur of gray, a woman. With crimson tracks that ran down her face, mysteriously unwashed by the rain. The sobbing boy took no heed of her. Heechul shook his head that began throbbing badly as he staggered on his feet, all drenched from head-to-toe. She looked straight at him in the eyes. A flash of light came, and silent screams that only he could hear pounded in his ears.
“Ryeowook, go into your room!” The boy ran past in fear and slammed the door. Anxiety, fear, and anger. Hatred.
“Bitch! Stop protecting that weakling!” Rage, abusive energy filled to the brim. Disappointment.
“He’s your son, no matter what you do! You can’t cut the ties!” Her hair was in a messy bun, tear tracks snaking down her tired and fair cheeks. The burly man grabbed her by the wrist roughly. She struggled to free herself, hoping her only son had locked his door while she tries to fight for his dream. Love.
A flash of blur. A big slap across somebody’s face, her tangled feet getting caught on the mat and a most unfortunate fall on the sharp edge of the coffee table. Eyes that rolled backwards, blood gleefully escaping, trailing crimson lines down her beautiful face. Glassy and gone.
The sobbing boy ran out through the front door.
Heechul snapped alert just as his forthcoming fall was stopped by the alley wall, the throbbing in his head waking up his every sense. The wispy woman had her arm around the small-framed boy who was shaking rather badly. Her lonely and desperate stare never left Heechul, pleading. Please…please…
Please help my son.
He shuffled over and held out a shaking hand to the boy, rain drops getting caught and slipping through the cracks of his fingers. The boy had no socks or shoes on. Heechul knows the best shoe shops with great discounts.
“Come. Ryeowook. Let’s do something about your feet.”
Ryeowook looked up and through the rain saw the hand of an angel before wriggling his toes slightly. A strange feeling in his heart told him to take it. He slipped his frigid hand into the delicate yet strong ones and never regretted it once since that fateful day.
The day after winter arrived was as quiet as he had anticipated. Kyuhyun woke up alone on his bed early in the cold morning, cocooned in his thick blanket. Somehow his pillow had ended up at the far right corner of his bed. That was when he saw a big package wrapped messily at the foot of his bed, with a hastily DIY card with the words ‘Your early Xmas present. Sorry about the shock last night. Your Yesungie-hyung’ scrawled messily on the right-hand side page. Kyuhyun shuddered slightly as the image of last night came back and wondered why he gave such a big reaction. He stared at his own hands and the spaces between his fingers for a while.
The frizzy-haired man must be out with Ryeowook again, he thought as he lifted the medium-sized box and shook it beside his ear for clues to what it is inside. The two of them seemed to have made up again, but he wondered what was wrong in the first place. Dull thuds rang within the box which didn’t give away much. He tore the wrapping paper away and smiled when a turtle-shaped wrist-rest came sliding out. He sighed and swung his legs down from his bed before stretching his muscles. He was tempted to shout ‘good morning’ but knew there would be no reply from within the empty apartment. On second thought, he decided he better not try.
He looked out of the large glass window he had just only un-boarded about a month or so ago. The window pane was fogged especially at the edges, leaving only a small circle in the middle where he could still make out some of the buildings opposite. He shuddered as he remembered how he had seen Shindong fall out of it, and how he himself had dangled out of it like a rag doll, otherwise falling too if not for the hand that had held onto him. He stared at his bed and the bits of green and red wrapping paper littering on it. He smiled unknowingly.
Maybe he can do some early Christmas present shopping today.
“It’s beautiful here…Hen piao liang de bai xue…”
Kyuhyun slowed to a halt before he stood frozen on the quiet street. By now, the falling snow had already turned the whole pavement into scenery worthy of a Christmas card; the only thing missing was a snowman complete with a carrot nose and button eyes and mouth. A fleeting thought brought him back to memories when he was a small child, giggling madly while he battled his sister in a snowball fight, his father and mother looking on happily from a bench nearby, all clothed snugly in home-knitted winter wear, without a worry in the world. The epitome of a perfect family, no less. He missed it, but it felt so far away now.
“H-hello?” Kyuhyun said in a small voice, licking his lips slightly to soothe the cracks. It’s the same voice again; always there amidst all the other more aggressive ones. It should also be the same one who spoke up while Ddaming looked like she was enjoying being stroked by someone. Maybe if he’d just try to ask what the voice needed then he’d leave him alone. Since he was already stuck with the ability, why not do some good for the afterlife? Christmas is not that far away and it is a time for giving, after all. It would be nice to help a spirit on his own without Heechul’s help to see how it goes. He wondered how the man would be spending Christmas. He swallowed, clutching the bag of shopping he had just gotten by himself.
“A-are you talking to me? You can hear me? Really? Finally!”
Kyuhyun jolted slightly as he huddled to himself, surprised by the vicinity of the voice. All he could see was white falling beautifully around him, the surroundings silent and strangely no one in sight. By chance the voice was there again, or maybe he’d been following Kyuhyun all along.
This one sounded different; well, at least much more polite than the others. He sounded polite, but sometimes Kyuhyun found it difficult to make out the words this voice seemed to be whispering most of the time. The strange accent in the broken Korean and foreign language the voice sometimes gurgled didn’t help at all. He strained his ears to listen for more. After the strange trip to the cemetery with Heechul, he was suddenly reminded of the feeling of accomplishment when he had first helped Shin Donghee.
He rubbed his gloved hands together for warmth and shook his head slightly, straining his ears for the gentle voice through the soft whooshing sounds of snow falling. “Yes, I can hear you, unfortunately. Why are you following me?” he said, trying to keep his voice steady despite the cold as he carried on with his journey back home.
“I saw you at the park…I’ve been trying to call out to you but you didn’t seem to notice me among the others…” Kyuhyun shuddered even more as the quiet voice spoke. The voice was of a man’s, a gentle-sounding one tinged with an accent. Maybe Japanese? Chinese? The owner of the voice probably needed some Korean lessons before anything. The tone was very different from Shindong and the rest.
Kyuhyun started shivering slightly from standing in the open street, feeling like he was losing his fingers to the cold. “Really?” Kyuhyun continued strolling slowly, expecting the voice to follow suit. “So what do you want from me? Is it something you want to tell your girlfriend? Or is there something you need to retrieve from somewhere? I can only try my best though…” he said through chattering teeth.
It was a long pause before the voice spoke up again. For a moment, Kyuhyun was hoping that the voice was gone for good as he turned into the street that led to his apartment. “Wo bu zhi dao,” the voice finally said in a whisper.
“Huh? What? I’m sorry but I didn’t catch that.” He tried to decipher the words but the cold numbing his senses and the soft volume of the voice didn’t help at all. Plus he realized he hasn’t watched enough anime to know Japanese well enough to understand what the voice was trying to say.
“I-I don’t know.”
Kyuhyun cocked his head to the side curiously. “But you can speak Korean, although it’s a bit broken, but never mind. I’m sorry but I don’t think I can understand what you’re trying to tell me just now.” He shook his head to the foggy emptiness. The two familiar apartment buildings were slowly coming into view. He was thinking of warmth suddenly, but not from his bed. Funnily enough his eyes averted automatically to the apartment opposite of his.
“O-okay. I’m sorry but I still don’t know…”
Kyuhyun sucked in a deep cold breath before rubbing the frigid tip of his nose. “What’s your name then?”
“I-I don’t know.”
“Why are you here?”
Kyuhyun furrowed his brows and shook his head. At least Shindong knew what he wanted when he asked for help. “Is there something you actually know then?”
“Right, I guess you don’t. Alright…do you know that you don’t belong here anymore?”
“I don’t?” the voice sounded surprised.
“I’m sorry to say this, but if I can hear you but can’t see you then it’s bad news on your side. I’m sorry for whatever happened to you…” Kyuhyun said as sympathetically as he could.
“It’s alright. I don’t know what happened to me either. You...do you think you can help me?”
Kyuhyun was now right outside Heechul’s apartment entrance. The scarf he bought on a whim was still nicely wrapped inside the package he was carrying. Should he go and give it to the man? He shook his head rather furiously at himself. He must be really going crazy.
“I can try, since I guess you’d be stuck with me for a while until we’re done figuring out why you’re still here.” His right foot moved in a circular movement on the snow-packed pavement outside the entrance, making an ‘o’ shaped absent-mindedly as he contemplated with himself whether to go in or not.
“It’s so noisy…Ouch!”
“What? Are you saying I’m noisy??” Kyuhyun said, annoyed at the sudden outcry. He was about to step a foot inside the warmth of the building when the voice suddenly fizzled away like a badly-tuned radio. He furrowed his eyebrows bewilderedly. “Hey! Are you still there?”Then his phone suddenly rang from his pocket.
“H-hello?” He jumped slightly at contact with the freezing metal on his phone. “Cho Kyuhyun-ssi?”
“Huh? Yes?”The voice had a clear quality and sounded very familiar but at that instance Kyuhyun had trouble trying to figure to whom it belonged to.
“Can you do me a favour?”
And then the line went dead with a beeping tone after a few more words. He stood dumbfounded for a moment, trying to decipher the words; the air around him felt strangely empty as well. And when he reached his hand into his pocket to keep his hand phone, something foreign came into contact with his cold fingers. He fished it out slowly and peered curiously at it.
It was a pink paper cherry blossom.