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22 February 2013 @ 05:17 pm
Decerto: Road to Freedom  
Title: Decerto: Road to Freedom
Chapter: 12/?
Fandoms: Super Junior, U-Kiss
Pairings: KyuHyun/Zhou Mi, Han Geng/HeeChul
Rating: R overall
Warning: AU, violence, angst
Summary: Taking place six years before the events of Decerto, the story of how a human and a slave started a revolution.

The apartment was too quiet. KyuHyun walked around slowly, just to make some noise even if it was just the floorboards creaking. Waking up that morning, he'd been confused at first where he was, sprawled out on the mattress in the corner of the room. But it hadn't taken long to remember why he was there and why he heard no sign of Zhou Mi elsewhere in the apartment.

Most of the day was spent curled up or lying down in various spots around the apartment, most commonly the couch and beside the window. KyuHyun did find himself upstairs around noon, looking around the loft space and noticing what Zhou Mi had taken with him wherever he'd gone.

Lying on his back beside the window, KyuHyun watched the shadows slowly shift across the ceiling. He had no idea what he was going to do, honestly. Hurt and betrayal weighed heavily in his heart, and he was just so angry, but being alone seemed to drain all the anger out of him. If he was going to be perfectly honest with himself, he had fallen in love with Zhou Mi. And he was at war with himself, half of him wanting nothing to do with the human, and the other hand wanting to find him, put his arms around him and hear Zhou Mi tell him again that he loved KyuHyun.

The lock on the apartment door clicked and the door slowly pushed open. Despite telling KyuHyun he'd give him a couple of days, Zhou Mi couldn't bring himself to stay away. Poking his head in, he waited for a moment to listen for any sounds. Frowning slightly when he heard nothing, he slipped in and shut the door behind him, setting the suitcase to the side. "KuiXian?" he called hesitantly, fearing that KyuHyun had run away.

Blinking, KyuHyun slowly sat up. He shifted to one side so he could see around the couch to the front door, Zhou Mi standing there in the entrance way. "...You're back."

"Yeah," Zhou Mi nodded, pulling off his shoes and stepping away from the door. "I just couldn't stay away, I'm sorry... I know I said I'd give you your space but... I missed you so much, and I'm so sorry KuiXian."

KyuHyun looked away, pushing himself back to lean against the window and draw his legs up to his chest. "I can't say I forgive you yet," he said after a long pause. The bruises had been given time to appear by then, sore after the tumble off the platform and leaping from pillar to pillar yesterday.

"I know, and I don't expect you to right away," Zhou Mi said, walking to the couch and sitting down. "But I want to earn that trust and forgiveness. It may take a long time, but it's worth it. And if you want to try, I know how we can start."

The snake frowned. "...What do you mean?"

"We need to get out of here," Zhou Mi said. "Not just out of the apartment, but out of this city, this country. I want to take you on a vacation, somewhere that I think you will love. Somewhere... where you're treated as an equal."

KyuHyun looked up at Zhou Mi at that, confusion evident in his face. "...You lost me. Somewhere where?"

"North America," Zhou Mi said, leaning forward to rest his elbows on his knees. "Where Signs are free."

That came as a complete surprise. "There's a place like that?" KyuHyun asked, not sure whether to believe Zhou Mi or not. It sounded too good to be true. "Really?"

"Really," Zhou Mi nodded, lips curling slightly. "If you want to go, start packing. We will take the first flight out of here and stay for as long as we want."

"...Why?" KyuHyun looked away. "Why do you even want to bring me anywhere?"

"Because I want you to be happy," Zhou Mi said with a small sigh. "That's all I've ever wanted. If I can't bring you happiness, then we'll find another way."

The snake thought about that for a long moment. A place to go where he wouldn't be expected to be a slave all the time, where he could speak his mind and not worry about getting killed.

"We can go?" he asked quietly, glancing back at Zhou Mi.

"Soon as you get a bag packed," Zhou Mi nodded.

Watching the human for a moment, KyuHyun stood up. He walked to his curtained corner of the room, crouching to pull out the small duffel bag in the bottom drawer of the dresser. There wasn't much to pack, the snake didn't own much, but he went through the drawers stuffing whatever clothes he had into the bag. He'd never left Korea before, Seoul only on rare occasions.

While KyuHyun was packing, Zhou Mi went to his desk to gather what documents he would need. His passport was still valid, and he had all of the licenses he need for KyuHyun to travel abroad. He hadn't been sure that KyuHyun would agree to the vacation, but the fact that he did was encouraging. Tucking the papers and his passport into his pocket, he went to the door to wait for KyuHyun to be ready.

It didn't take long to finish packing, KyuHyun closing the duffel bag and slinging it over his shoulder. He looked around the apartment before following Zhou Mi to the door, pulling his shoes on. "Ready."

"Taxi is waiting downstairs," Zhou Mi said, hand on the door handle. "Thank you for agreeing to this KuiXian. I think it'll be good for you... and for both of us."

KyuHyun eyed the human warily, not entirely sure what to make of this sudden idea. He didn't know what to expect either. "We'll see," he said finally, shoulders hunched as he waited to follow Zhou Mi out of the apartment.

Lips quirking slightly, Zhou Mi opened the door and stepped out first. "Try to contain that enthusiasm KuiXian," he said lightly, glancing over his shoulder. "Wouldn't want you to be disappointed."

Blinking at Zhou Mi, KyuHyun looked away with an indignant sniff, realizing he was being made fun of. It was just like when he first got here, Zhou Mi teasing him then too.

He trailed after the human all the way down to the lobby, where he saw there was indeed a taxi already waiting for them. They got inside, KyuHyun holding onto his duffel bag tightly and looking out the window at the people passing by in the streets.

Getting settled in his seat, Zhou Mi instructed the driver to take them to the airport. "So, KuiXian. Where should we go?" he asked, watching the snake. "We can go anywhere in North America... Hollywood? New York?"

KyuHyun looked back at Zhou Mi, frowning slightly at the names. "...I don't know the difference between any of those places." At some point over the two years he'd gotten a hold of a global map Zhou Mi had stashed in a corner and memorized the various countries, but beyond that he had little idea of the world outside South Korea. He didn't like how little he still knew.

"Truthfully I don't know the difference either," Zhou Mi chuckled. "But I know New York is supposed to have some of the best shopping in the world. Let's go there, and eat real New York pizza. Sound good?"

"Sure," KyuHyun nodded. Any place was fine with him...he was far more interested in the idea that Signs were free where they were going than picking between hard to pronounce names. "They uh...speak Korean? Mandarin?"

Zhou Mi's smile faltered slightly and he blinked a couple of times. "Uh... hopefully? I think they speak mainly English there... We'll have to pick up a dictionary at the airport. We'll be fine though, I know a small bit of English."

The snake didn't appear particularly reassured, looking back out the taxi window. Thinking about where they were going made him realize something else. "...I've never been on an airplane before."

"Are you afraid of heights?" Zhou Mi asked. "It can be a scary thing until you experience it. I love flying, I think it's relaxing."

"I don't know if I'm afraid of heights, I don't think so," KyuHyun frowned. Either way, shifting in fright on a crowded airplane wouldn't be the best idea ever. He'd be fine.

"Guess we'll see," Zhou Mi said, looking back out the window, watching the buildings go by. They arrived at the airport a while later, Zhou Mi paying the driver before stepping out. He grabbed his suitcase from the trunk and started for the main doors.

There was a lot more people at the airport than KyuHyun thought there would be. He slung his duffel bag over his shoulder and followed after Zhou Mi, not wanting to fall behind.

There was a roaring sound overhead and the snake blinked, looking upwards. A plane was taking off, soaring over their heads.

His distraction cost him as KyuHyun walked right into someone. "Hey, watch it!" The snake yelped as he landed on his rear, nearly dropping his bag.

Hearing the commotion, Zhou Mi stopped and turned around. The man KyuHyun had run in to was glaring at the sign and then looked up at Zhou Mi. "Keep your property on a leash!" the man said. "It touched me!"

Zhou Mi's eyes narrowed and he walked up to the man. "Your point?" he said lowly.

Looking up at Zhou Mi's face as he slowly stood up, KyuHyun thought the stork-like human was ready to punch the other guy, who was twice Mi's body mass. Zhou Mi's response startled the snake, looking between them both quickly.

"Zhou— Master, you will miss your flight, he said quickly, wedging himself between the two and steering Zhou Mi away towards the doors.

Zhou Mi only barely registered that KyuHyun was talking, but was easily pushed towards the doors. He only broken eye contact with the other human when it hurt his neck too much to continue. "You need to be more careful," he said quietly to the snake. "Anything you do can get us both in trouble."

"Sorry," the snake mumbled, looking away as he readjusted his duffel bag and flinched, switching it to his other shoulder. "Where are we going?" he asked as they walked through the airport doors into a massive lobby.

"To a ticket counter, find the next available flight and book seats," Zhou Mi said, looking around as well. "Over here," he started towards an available counter that had a short line. "I'm sorry," he said with a sigh when they were finally in line. "It was as much your fault as it was that man's. But police would take his word over yours."

"I know that," KyuHyun replied; he didn't need Zhou Mi to tell him what he already knew. He was silent for a few minutes as they slowly moved up in line. "...Thanks."

"For what?" Zhou Mi blinked, startled out of his thoughts. He'd been staring at the board over the counter for flight times. There was a flight leaving in a couple of hours, and hopefully it wouldn't be full.

"For standing up to him," KyuHyun said, looking away from the human.

"...Oh," Zhou Mi nodded slightly, glancing at KyuHyun. "You don't need to thank me for that. He was an ass. If he had been paying attention where he was going, then you wouldn't have run into him. That and he called you property which pisses me off more than anything."

KyuHyun nodded slowly at that. He was property, the collar around his neck practically screamed it.  But the fact Zhou Mi didn't see him that way...

It had been why he'd fallen for the bumbling human in the first place.

They finally reached the counter, KyuHyun staying a step back as Zhou Mi bought their tickets.

It didn't take long to book the tickets, Zhou Mi insisting on first class accommodations for them. If this was KyuHyun's first flight then he would need to be comfortable. Tickets in hand, he stepped away from the desk, motioning KyuHyun to follow. "Let's get through security. Then maybe we can get something to eat? Are you hungry?"

"...A little." KyuHyun followed after Zhou Mi. "When's the flight?" He wanted to look around the new location, but to avoid another incident kept his attention on Zhou Mi.

"About three hours from now," Zhou Mi said, heading towards the security checkpoint. "That's enough time to get through security and customs, eat, then find our terminal."

"How long will it take to get to New York?" KyuHyun frowned, seeing the lineup at security. A loud beeping noise at one of the security gates made him jump.

"... A long time," Zhou Mi said, pushing KyuHyun forward. "I hope you packed books."

"Just a couple," KyuHyun stumbled forward a little, not really wanting to approach the things that were making that noise.

Passing through security was...interesting, because KyuHyun didn't really want to pass through what Zhou Mi had to assure him was just a metal detector and not something designed to kill his hearing. Making it through without setting the thing off, KyuHyun pulling on his shoes again and picked up his duffel bag, waiting for Zhou Mi.

"See, what did I tell you?" Zhou Mi said with a smile. "Now, there are plenty of places to eat on the terminal, let's find something that looks good?"

KyuHyun nodded, glancing around the airport. "Wherever you want to go." He fell in step behind Zhou Mi, trying not to be distracted by the large airplanes he could see through the floor to ceiling windows on the secured side of the airport.

"Okay," Zhou Mi said, walking to the nearest cafe with a couple of tables and chairs out front. He ordered them two sandwiches and a couple of drinks to take to the tables to eat.

They waited around the terminal for their flight, the three hours passing slowly to KyuHyun who was nervous being around this much security. After eating and wandering around the station, they sat down outside their gate and the snake was able to hide behind a book.

Finally it came time to board. The seats were pretty comfortable, Zhou Mi had seen to that. When the plane took off, the question of whether KyuHyun was afraid of heights was answered; the snake seemed fine most of the time, until the plane banked to one side to do a U-turn. At least he didn't change form by accident; that was all they needed, a 2-meter long snake in the plane.

18 hours and a transfer later, the plane landed for the last time. "We have now arrived in New York City," a woman's voice spoke, before saying something in a language KyuHyun had no hope of understanding.

The snake rubbed his eyes, sitting up a little straighter; he'd fallen asleep the last stretch. "What time is it?" He murmured, peering out the window.

"Not sure," Zhou Mi said, slowly getting to his feet. "We can find out when we get on the terminal."

KyuHyun got to his feet as well, waiting until the aisle was clear to get his and Zhou Mi's bags from the overhead storage units. "Here," he held out the human's suitcase.

"Thank you," Zhou Mi grinned, taking the suitcase and starting towards the front. "We're on a whole new continent KuiXian," he said once they'd disembarked from the plane and made their way to the terminal. "First thing we need to do, is take off that collar."

The snake stopped in surprise. "...You're kidding, right? We'll both get into trouble if I go around without my collar." Not once in all the time he'd been with Zhou Mi had he taken off the leather collar around his neck.

Zhou Mi stopped as well a few paces away, tilting his head. "In trouble from who? We're not in Korea KuiXian. We're someplace where you're considered free."

Free...that hadn't really sank in for KyuHyun. Even hearing Signs were free in this place, he didn't really think it applied to him too, that he would come here and still be a slave regardless. He touched the collar around his neck. He could really take it off?

"When can we take it off?" he asked once that had sunk in a little more.

"...Maybe we should wait until we get to the hotel," Zhou Mi said quietly, touching KyuHyun's shoulder. "Let you get used to it a little before we do anything else."

Looking up at Zhou Mi, KyuHyun nodded at that, lowering his hand again. "...Is this why there were no other Signs on board the first plane from Korea? Because they would be free?" He'd been confused by the absolute lack of Signs, smelling only human on board.

"Possibly," Zhou Mi frowned, glancing around. "Or it's possible they were... flown in storage. Or on another flight altogether. It's only a lucky few Signs that get to come here in first class."

Nodding slowly, KyuHyun looked around as well as they walked. All the signs they saw were written in a foreign language, and while there had been similar signs all through Korea he hadn't really bothered with them, because a Korean version was always close at hand. He really hoped Zhou Mi was good in English, because KyuHyun had no idea where he was going, unconsciously walking a little closer as he eyed a group of people talking loudly in English.

Unfortunately, Zhou Mi wasn't nearly as good at English as he'd like to be. Keeping KyuHyun near, he looked around as they walked through the terminal. The general flow of people seemed to be heading in a particular direction, so as any good lemming would do, he followed the crowd. Before they could leave the terminal, Zhou Mi spotted what he thought was a tourist shop, and took KyuHyun by the arm to navigate towards it. "They must have maps and dictionaries here. If not in Korean at least in Mandarin."

KyuHyun followed when his arm was pulled, skeptical as he looked at the shop. "How about someone who speaks either, so we can ask?"

"One thing at a time, KuiXian," Zhou Mi said with a small sigh. They really should have stopped at a bookstore before going to the airport. Once inside the shop, Zhou Mi looked around for anything that resembled a language he understood. There were plenty of european language books and even more he didn't recognize until one popped out. "Look! See?" he picked up a Mandarin to English dictionary. "This should help... oh there's a Korean one too," he cooed and picked that one up as well, clutching the books tightly to his chest as he looked around some more. "Tell me if you find maps."

"Uh, sure." KyuHyun looked around the shop, frowning at the words he didn't understand. Maybe he should have tried studying English as well.

In a back corner, he located several maps rolled up in tubes. "Hey Mi, the maps are over here." He saw the store owner looking at them weirdly.

Zhou Mi joined KyuHyun and began to poke through them, as well as the folded maps to the side. "I don't see any in... oh here's one," Zhou Mi picked up one of the rolled maps and pulled it open to the pull the map out. It was huge. "Okay, we'll take this and the books..." Gathering everything up, he took them to the counter and unloaded his arms. He had no idea what the cashier was saying, so he just held out his credit card and smiled. They'd have to stop and get some American money at some point, he couldn't use his credit card for everything.

Once outside the shop with his bags, Zhou Mi was already looking through the dictionary and frowning. "Okay, so we need to get a taxi, and get to a hotel... how do I say that."

"I thought you said you knew some English?" KyuHyun caught the map that was about to tip out of it's bag before taking it off of Zhou Mi.

"Saying hello and bye and thank you is some, but not enough," Zhou Mi winced. "It's not like we need to know much else right? Maybe I can find a translator or something, there's a consulate here," he muttered, trailing off as he continued to walk.

"..." KyuHyun shook his head and followed after Zhou Mi, rubbing his eyes. He was tired after the long flight, and knew Zhou Mi had to be too. "I think those are taxis over there," he pointed as they left the airport.

"Hm?" Zhou Mi finally looked up and nodded. It was then he seemed to realize he was in a different country and he stopped, looking around. "...We're... in America KuiXian," he said with a smile. "It's amazing."

"...Uh, yeah?" KyuHyun eyed the human, who was clearly a little more tired than the snake originally thought. It was cool being in a different country, but finding a hotel and sleeping off the jetlag came first for KyuHyun. While Zhou Mi was distracted KyuHyun snuck the dictionary out of his hands, flipping through it with a frown until he found a section of phrases useful for traveling. "Come on, let's go. Are we going to any hotel?"

"Yes, any hotel," Zhou Mi nodded, not really seeming to notice. "One in uh... Manhattan. Expensive hotel. That's the best place right? I think?"

"You're really asking the wrong person," KyuHyun rolled his eyes, pulling Zhou Mi along to the taxis.

Reaching the first one, he stopped and looked between Zhou Mi and the taxi driver. It was clearly up to him to figure this out, waving to get the driver's attention. "Where is...the...hotel?" he recited slowly and carefully from the phrasebook, wincing because he knew that wasn't right but there was little he could do about it.

The taxi driver didn't seem to understand, neither did KyuHyun understand what was being said back to him, so he tried again. "Go to hotel, um...Manhattan hotel."

After a bit of back and forth with mangled English and the driver actually getting out to help look at the dictionary, there was finally a moment of understanding. "He probably needs to know which hotel right?" Zhou Mi said, taking back the dictionary and flipping through it. "Any... hotel... Manhattan," he said, going to another page. "Expensive!" he looked at the driver with a grin. "Hotel expensive Manhattan!"

Obviously the syntax was all wrong, the driver laughing as he took their bags to load into the taxi. Zhou Mi quickly opened the door and scooted in, looking over the different signs all over the inside. "Hopefully he doesn't rob us and take all our stuff," he said, looking at KyuHyun when he climbed in and the door was shut.

"Why do you think of this after it's too late to go somewhere else," KyuHyun sighed, slumping in his seat as he watched them pull away from the curb. Hopefully actually checking into the hotel would go better, but he doubted it. "How long are we staying here?"

"No idea," Zhou Mi shrugged. "I didn't get return tickets. We can leave when we want to leave. We can stay all summer and learn English if we want. There's no time limit."

Blinking, KyuHyun glanced at Zhou Mi. "Isn't that...don't you have a meeting with the commissioner next week?"

"I do," Zhou Mi nodded. "Well I did, but I told him this morning that I was taking a holiday and that I needed to get some affairs in order." He looked at KyuHyun with a small smile. "This was more important."

Meeting Zhou Mi's eyes, KyuHyun didn't know what to say to that. He ended up looking away to hide the slight quirk of his lips, looking outside the taxi instead. "It's...weird. I don't understand anything out there."

"Me either, but that's part of the fun," Zhou Mi said, breathing in the air as he looked up at the buildings. "There is, as I understand it, a China... town, as well as a few streets in Manhattan that are Korean shops and restaurants. If we can't understand English, we can at least find those places and figure things out from there."

"Okay, good," KyuHyun nodded. At least there was somewhere they would be understood. He continued to watch the people around them as they traveled through the streets of New York.

Finally the taxi pulled up in front of what looked to be a massive hotel, and it certainly looked expensive. The taxi driver turned around and said something to them, KyuHyun blinking at the man in incomprehension. "Uh...I guess this is us."

"Well, I'm sure this will be a very interesting new experience," Zhou Mi said, pulling out his wallet and handing over his credit card. "Keep that dictionary handy, we're going to need it." He shooed KyuHyun out so they could get their bags and get into the hotel. He wanted a top floor room so he could look down at the city.

KyuHyun climbed out of the taxi, going to get their stuff out of the trunk. Placing everything on the sidewalk, he picked up what he could and waited for Zhou Mi to be done paying. "Maybe we'll get lucky and they'll have a Korean or Chinese worker."

"Maybe," Zhou Mi said, taking back his credit card and finally getting out of the cab. He looked up, and up, head tilting back as he looked at the buildings surrounding them. "Wow. Can you believe we're really here KuiXian?"

"It's...not really registering yet," KyuHyun blinked, looking around as well. "Come on...you've got to be tired too after that flight." He decided to leave admiring their new surroundings for when he was more awake, turning towards the hotel entrance.

"Fine fine," Zhou Mi chuckled, taking his own suitcase inside. The hotel lobby was probably one of the most decadent and expensive looking rooms he had ever seen. As they approached the desk, he dipped his head slightly to the woman at the counter, smiling as brightly as he could. "Hi," he said awkwardly in English, fumbling for the dictionary again. "Room... please."

The woman, who was asian, smiled back at him. "Would you like a harbor view, or a city view?" she asked in Mandarin.

"... Uh," Zhou Mi opened his mouth to respond, blinking a few times before he slumped slightly in relief. "Oh, thank goodness. A... city view please?"

"Of course," she replied, tapping at a computer. "How long will you be staying with us?"

Waiting for them to finish, KyuHyun sniffed, blinked, and sniffed again. Snakes didn't have the best sense of smell amongst the Signs, but he could have sworn... He looked at the woman who was talking with Zhou Mi again.

She was...a goat. Realizing that, KyuHyun looked at her neck. She had no collar, nor any scars to give away ever having one.

"A week to start, it may be longer," Zhou Mi said. "We'd like a room near the top, most expensive room you have."

"We have a honeymoon suite," the woman said, looking between them with a knowing smile. She seemed to do a double take though, looking at KyuHyun and the collar. The smile pinched off and her lips thinned as she looked away. "Was there anything else sir?"

"Hm? Oh, no, that should do just fine," Zhou Mi said, getting out his wallet again to hand over his credit card. "Could you have a bottle of the nicest wine sent to the room?"

KyuHyun raised an eyebrow at all the expenses; they were adding up.

"I'll arrange that right away," the woman behind the counter replied, taking his credit card and entering it into the system. Passing it back across the counter, she gave them two room cards. "Your room's ready."

"Thank you," Zhou Mi bowed again, taking his card and starting for the elevator. "Let's go KuiXian. I think a nice glass of wine and a bit of a rest is just what we need," he said, looking over at the snake. "And tomorrow, we can do whatever you want to do."

"I..." KyuHyun shook his head, following after Zhou Mi. He was too tired to think just then. "I'm not sure what there is to do...look around I guess?" He pressed the elevator button.

"Yes, a couple days just wandering the city," Zhou Mi nodded. "Find the best restaurants in town, maybe go to Central Park, which I think you'll like a lot."

"Central Park? Sure," KyuHyun blinked. "It's like the park back near your apartment? Should I bring my inhaler?"

"It's a bigger park, and yes," Zhou Mi nodded, stepping onto the elevator when it arrived. "With all the walking around we're planning on doing, you should keep it on hand."

Nodding, KyuHyun followed him into the elevator. The back of the elevator had a glass pane opening up onto a view of a garden. The snake peered out curiously before looking at Zhou Mi. "That Chinese girl...she's a goat."

"...Really?" Zhou Mi blinked at that, not even aware. "Ah... I think that would explain the look then. Well it's comforting to know that Sign's really can live their own lives here."

"She didn't have a collar. So she was...working here, not working for an owner who works here?" KyuHyun looked up at the numbers as the elevator rose.

"That would be my assumption," Zhou Mi nodded. "I'm sure she won't be the only Sign we meet here."

Nodding slowly, KyuHyun didn't say anything else and just looked out the glass window. The elevator stopped on the top floor and he followed Zhou Mi out, looking around the long spacious corridor.

Humming a little to himself, Zhou Mi checked room numbers as they started down the hall. When they reached the end, Zhou Mi looked at the key card in his hand and matched it to the room number. "I think this is us," he said, sliding the key card into the lock and waiting for the beep. The door unlocked and he pushed it open, eyes widening at what they were greeted with. The floor to ceiling windows were even more impressive than the apartment, the whole city stretching out below them. "Oh wow, look!" he made a beeline to the window, pointing towards the patch of green stretching away in the distance. "That's the park!"

Placing the bags down and closing the door behind them, KyuHyun's eyes widened slightly at the view. The snake followed Zhou Mi to the window slowly, stopping and pressing one hand against the glass. "...Wow. The park's...a little bigger than back in Korea." Little being an understatement.

"It is," Zhou Mi nodded, glancing left to right. "Can you imagine how pretty this view will be at night? I think... This is going to be the best thing for us KuiXian. I think this will be perfect."

KyuHyun looked out the window for a long moment before turning his head towards Zhou Mi beside him. "You're doing all this...because of what happened in the arena?"

"... Yes," Zhou Mi nodded, his smile turning sad. "I made a mistake, and put my own needs before yours. That can't happen again, because everything I've worked for, is for you."

The snake looked into Zhou Mi's eyes, seeing the sadness and regret in his face. After a moment he looked down, lifting a hand to lightly touch his collar. "Can we..."

Zhou Mi looked at the hand on the collar and nodded. "Yes," he said softly, reaching forward to undo the buckle and slowly pull the leather away. He touched where the skin was slightly pink. "In a few days, this will disappear," he said softly, dropping the collar onto a table nearby. "How does it feel?"

KyuHyun felt the cool air against his neck. "...Light," he murmured, unable to help feeling a little lost. He couldn't remember ever not wearing a collar, besides the short moments where he had to be fitted for a new one. The snake leaned against the window, looking down at the collar on the table blankly with one hand against his neck, feeling the chapped and scarred skin.

"One day, you'll be able to take it off and never have to look at it again," Zhou Mi said quietly. "Because seeing you without one, is the most... beautiful sight I've ever seen."

The snake slowly looked up at Zhou Mi, eyes wide. After a moment he pushed away from the window only to lean against Zhou Mi instead, forehead resting on the man's shoulder. His hand dropped from his neck to hang limply at his side.

Wrapping his arms around KyuHyun's shoulders, he held him the snake tightly. "I love you KuiXian," he whispered into his ear, kissing the side of his head.

KyuHyun exhaled softly, resting his hands against Zhou Mi's waist. "...I love you too," he murmured, eyes closed.

Zhou Mi felt the tears welling in his eyes at the words, closing them so he could pull KyuHyun closer and bury his nose into the snake's hair. "I want to make you a promise," he said after a moment, pulling back to look into KyuHyun's eyes. "That no matter what happens, you come first."

Looking back at the human, KyuHyun's lips curled slightly. "Just promise to ask me next time before sending me into any arenas," he said quietly.

"I wouldn't send you into the arena again," Zhou Mi said, brushing a hand over his cheek. "I learned my lesson there."

"Good." The snake hugged Zhou Mi tighter, nose against the other man's neck as he closed his eyes and sighed softly.

Enjoying the embrace, Zhou Mi's eyes opened when he heard a knock at the door. "That's probably the wine," he murmured, pulling back again and giving KyuHyun a small smile. "Glass of wine, then some sleep. Sound good?"

Looking back at the human, KyuHyun's lips quirked slightly as he nodded, stepping back out of Zhou Mi's embrace. "Sounds good."

He couldn't say he trusted Zhou Mi yet, as evident by the lack of scales and the eyes that remained black rather than blue, but it was becoming too exhausting to stay away from the man completely.

Answering the door, Zhou Mi accepted the bottle of wine from the worker and brought it to the counter in the kitchenette. Hunting through the cabinets, he found two glasses and a bottle opener in the drawer. He brought the two glasses over to KyuHyun after he had poured them both a glass, handing it to him. "To a new beginning?" he said, holding up the glass.

Taking the glass, KyuHyun tapped the edge of it against the other man's. "And to being halfway across the world with no idea how to speak the language," he smirked a little, sipping at the wine.

"That's not the part I'm worried about," Zhou Mi chuckled, taking a sip as well. "We could be a lot worse off."

"I guess so," KyuHyun nodded, sitting down on the couch after a moment. "You spent a lot of money on this place."

"Worth it though," Zhou Mi said, following him over to sit in a chair. "We're in one of the greatest cities in the world, it's only fitting we do it right."

"You're going to be broke after this," KyuHyun wrinkled his nose a little at the other man.

'I guess it's a good thing it's not my money," Zhou Mi said, rolling the wine a little in the glass. "Don't worry so much about how much money I'm spending, just enjoy yourself."

KyuHyun eyed him before sipping the wine again, rubbing his eyes to stay awake. "We're going to that massive park tomorrow?"

"If that's what you want to do," Zhou Mi said, glancing at the clock. "Like I said, it's up to you what we do with our time."

Nodding, KyuHyun was quiet for a minute, enjoying the wine before placing the glass to one side. "You look like you're going to fall asleep and spill the wine on yourself."

"I could say the same of you," Zhou Mi said, setting the glass down on the table. "Maybe we should get some sleep," he said, glancing towards the bed. "...If you would prefer I sleep on the couch, I will. I don't want to make you uncomfortable."

KyuHyun glanced at the bed. "...The bed's pretty big, it's not a problem." He stood up, stretching out his arms and wincing. Looking around the suite, he went to the large windows and started to pull the curtains shut.

"If you're sure," Zhou Mi said, watching him before slowly getting up. Now that he was relaxed and not moving around, he could feel how tired he really was. Opening up his suitcase, he pulled out something to sleep in and quickly changed before climbing into bed.

The snake didn't really have many clothes to sleep in, and he was used to sleeping in his boxers anyways. So once he had closed up the curtains he just stripped to his boxers, placing the clothes aside to deal with when he could think straight. He climbed into the bed, settling down under the sheets.

Curling up on his side, Zhou Mi sighed a little. "I'm glad you came KuiXian."

KyuHyun looked at him through the darkness, blinking slowly. "Nowhere else I'd rather be right now," he murmured.

"Me either," Zhou Mi replied, closing his eyes and drifting into sleep.
TakaGacktHydetakagackthyde on February 22nd, 2013 11:28 pm (UTC)
way to go mimi, kyuhyun needed this vacation. i wonder if kyu will ever show mimi his snake form. i bet it would shock the hell outta zhou mi.
dune_ashesdune_ashes on February 23rd, 2013 01:12 pm (UTC)
Love it <3 And can't wait for the next part already T_T

/silently hoping for them to get more touchy-feely because I'm just a perv like that *winkwink*/

Edited at 2013-02-23 01:13 pm (UTC)
hana: QMihana_yo on February 26th, 2013 12:36 am (UTC)
The last chapter was so heartbreaking T_T
But they seem to be on a good way again. At least I hope everything will be fine soon. I liked the way you showed their relationship here. Especially how Kyu loves Mi and telling him so, but at the same time demonstrating him he isn't trusting him completely by his appearance. I'm already curious what will be happening in New York =)
Thanks for the update <3
Amaranth Pearbuckleapearbuckle19 on March 4th, 2013 03:01 am (UTC)
So much love for this. Kyuhyun taking his time and not just jumping right back in is great. The goat receptionist rocked.

The fact that they prepared nothing and went to a place where they could be legally robbed by anybody who wants to overcharge them is hilarious and totally perfect for them.

I like that Chinatown wasn't their first stop too. The uncertainty adds a mysterious air to New York.

Kyuhyun in parks is win.

Oh, JC has totally been on the internet too long. He called a vendor who had messed up an inventory sheet. He said, "George, you can't math." He didn't even realize at first what he said or why the other person was laughing his ass off. :D