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21 June 2013 @ 11:33 pm
Decerto: Road to Freedom  
Title: Decerto: Road to Freedom
Chapter: 33/40 + epilogue
Fandoms: Super Junior, U-Kiss
Pairings: KyuHyun/Zhou Mi, Han Geng/HeeChul, KiBum/SooHyun
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 day waned on, the sounds of crowds cheering was never ending and sometimes Zhou Mi wondered how it was he never got a headache from it day in and day out. Maybe it was because he'd close his eyes and focus on KyuHyun's voice over the crowd, and how animated he would get.

Of course, the first day of the first tier was an exciting time and even Zhou Mi sat at his balcony to watch. Up until the end of the first game though, when the ox was killed, his good mood disappeared. He busied himself with paperwork and things that needed his attention for the rest of the matches, only making appearences at the balcony if there was something he needed to see. For the most part, he trusted KyuHyun's decision making in the ring, as did most of the crowd.

By the time the last match was finished, Zhou Mi was still fuming and had immediately sent a message to KyuHyun. He needed to have a discussion with someone.

Receiving the message as he was changing out of his referee's uniform, KyuHyun sighed to himself. He'd had a feeling this was coming, and guessed that the person he was to bring to Zhou Mi knew it as well. Pulling on his spare set of clothes, he headed down to the fighters' wing.

Five minutes later, he had returned to the commissioner's office. KyuHyun knocked on the door before pulling it open, stepping in. DongHae followed him inside, bowing as the snake closed the door behind them.

Leaning back in his chair at his desk, Zhou Mi frowned at DongHae, motioning for him to sit down. "DongHae, thank you for seeing me. I'm sure you know what this is about but let me make myself clear. Technically death in the ring on any tier is not against the rules, so you aren't in any trouble nor is your master... but what the hell was that?"

"That was dealing with a problem, sir," DongHae replied, slowly walking over to sit down.

"You're going to have to be more elaborate than that," KyuHyun drawled, joining Zhou Mi on the other side of the desk.

"Most of the fighters are aware of what's going on, and what's going to happen," DongHae said. "The ox was trying to go against us and rally fighters not just to make a point, but to kill as many people as they can. I dealt with him."

Zhou Mi blew out a slow breath at that, a wave of dizziness rushing over him. "Are there many more like him? Wanting to kill humans in the revolt?"

"There's a number of them, yeah," DongHae nodded. "My group have been working to identify those who can be persuaded otherwise, and who's a serious threat that needs to be taken care of."

"Are there any fighters that are respected? By most of the fighters?" Zhou Mi asked.

DongHae's ear flicked back and forth as he thought about that. "They respect the stronger fighters. Those who've made it far in the pre-tournament, and previous tournaments."

"I want you to appeal to those strong fighters, if they aren't with you yet, then convince them," Zhou Mi said. "The fighters will have you to rally them, but they will still need a strong hand to keep them in check. Understood?"

"Yes sir," DongHae nodded. "And if there are still those who won't listen?"

Zhou Mi's lips thinned as he looked to KyuHyun for a moment before returning his attention to DongHae. "Make sure they won't be a problem."

"Understood, sir," DongHae nodded again, standing. "Was there anything else?"

"That was all, one of the guards will escort you back down to the fighter wing," Zhou Mi said, motioning for him to go.

Bowing again, DongHae turned and left the office. KyuHyun watched the door click shut behind him, striding over to lock it. "You look like you need another vacation," he looked back at Zhou Mi.

"I just gave him permission to kill slaves if he needed to," Zhou Mi said, closing his eyes. "What does that make me?"

"Someone who realizes that just like there's rotten humans, there's some rotten Signs too," KyuHyun walked back to the desk. "And this is too important to risk anything going wrong."

"And the ends justify the means?" Zhou Mi said, rubbing at his temple. "I think I need a long hot bath tonight KuiXian... and maybe HeeChul has the right of it. Drink until the problems go away."

"And we both remember how sick you got last time you decided to drink until the problem went away." KyuHyun slipped around the desk to stop behind Zhou Mi. He wrapped his arms around the human from behind, resting his chin on top of Zhou Mi's head. "If it makes you feel better, DongHae was probably going to kill off the troublemakers anyways even if you told him not to, or get someone else to help him do it. Giving him permission or not wouldn't have made a difference. They've decided down there that nothing's going to stand in the way of getting their message out. Not even other fighters."

"Doesn't mean it sits well with me KuiXian," Zhou Mi sighed. "Isn't the point of all this to prevent that very thing? To stop more Signs from being killed? I know in the end it's for the best, but doesn't mean I necessarily agree to it."

"I know," KyuHyun frowned. "Come on, you've been sitting in this chair too long. Let's go home." He straightened to pull the chair away from the desk.

Getting to his feet, Zhou Mi closed up what he had been working on. "You know what my biggest fear was when I took this position?" he said, glancing at KyuHyun. "That one day I would be like every other person wh's sat in that chair before me. Seeing slaves as expendable, and not worth living. It's a slippery slope from agreeing to killing the fighters who don't agree with me about rights to... being the monster I wanted to protect others from."

The snake shook his head, turning Zhou Mi to face him. "And you're not going to go down that slope. You're better than that. Hell, you're better than me, cause I agree with what DongHae's doing."

That took Zhou Mi by surprise, blinkg a little at him. "You do? I don't understand... you want Signs to kill each other? Even if it's the name of good KuiXian... it's still killing people."

"I know that," KyuHyun nodded. "But I've never been an idealist like you. I see those fighters every day, and I know which ones will help us, and which ones are exactly the kind of bloodthirsty animals humans think we all are. It doesn't matter if humans made them that way, some Signs are beyond help. If we keep walking around on eggshells and ignoring these warning signs, the revolt will fail, people will die, and even more Signs will end up like them in the future."

Zhou Mi sighed, looking toward the open balcony door. "I know you're right... and I hate that you are. I just wanted to be able to save them all..."

"And that's why you'll never go down that slippery slope," KyuHyun smirked. "Cause even when Signs are insisting it needs to be done, you want to find another way."

That brought out a sad smile, Zhou Mi looking back at KyuHyun. "Fair point. Once again you are the logical reasoning when I'm in the grips of despair. What would I do without you?"

"Let's not find out." KyuHyun leaned up to kiss Zhou Mi before pulling back, packing the human's papers in his suitcase. "Time to get out of here. I'll keep you distracted the rest of the night."

"You better... it's only the first day and I fel like my head is going to explode," Zhou Mi said. "Have you seen my schedule for tomorrow? Not only do I have to preside over the games but I have several meetings with investors and promoters and some advocacy group for the fighting houses. As if they're the ones who need advocates. I'm this close to telling them as such too."

"Oh, if you blow up at them, wait till I'm there to watch," KyuHyun grinned over his shoulder at Zhou Mi. "You pissed off is something spectacular."

"As long as it's not directed at you," Zhou Mi snorted, putting on his jacket and heading for the door. "So many people see me as this soft pliable person who they can mold to their will. That was Kang HoDong's mistakewhen he brought me under his wing. I'm a man of strong convictions." He glanced at KyuHyun. "You like it when I get pissed off because it makes our relaxing time that much more... interesting."

"That it does," KyuHyun chuckled, closing the suitcase and carrying it to the door. "That and I like watching the looks on everyone elses' faces when you go all-out on them."

"That is a little satisfying, I'll admit," Zhou Mi grinned. "That'll show anyone who thinks I'm a pushover... I think even Master Jung was surprised. Now that felt good."

"He should be surprised, you're a force to be reckoned with. I'm just glad we're on the same side," KyuHyun chuckled, stopping beside the other man.

"Well I probably wouldn't be as determined if you weren't by my side in the first place," Zhou Mi said, leaning over to give KyuHyun a light kiss. "You give me the greatest reason of all for doing this. And when this is over, we'll take the longest vacation ever just so I can properly thank you over, and over again."

"If my collar comes off, I'll be the one thanking you," KyuHyun smirked, returning the kiss before unlocking the door. "And I won't be waiting until we're on vacation."

The corners of Zhou Mi's lips curled upwards as he stepped out into the hall. "Maybe we can give that test run tonight," he said, switching to Mandarin.

"Test run?" Translating that, KyuHyun held back a grin. "Of course. Hope you weren't planning to get any work done."

"Whatever there is, can wait until I'm more focused," Zhou Mi chuckled. "You get that look in your eyes and I lose all concentration on anything that isn't you being on top of me."

"…I can't translate what I want to say into Mandarin," KyuHyun huffed. "Hurry up, if you keep talking like that the taxi driver's going to kick us out of his car." The snake walked a little faster.

Zhou Mi laughed, following after him. "Then I guess we'll continue that conversation in the elevator of our building," he said. Until then, he would try not to let the stress of their situation get to him. If it hadn't been for KyuHyun all these years, he probably would have given up. That was something he would thank KyuHyun for until they were old wrinkly men.

************************************

The rest of the first tier passed without any major hiccups, no more so than usual. KyuHyun found himself spending most of his time in the fighters' quarters, talking with the slaves there. He only joined Zhou Mi at the end of the day, to make sure the human wasn't killing himself with work.

At least one good thing came out of the first tier. It was worth some of the struggle to see YunHo and YoungSaeng's eyes light up when Zhou Mi called them to his office, informing them that he was going to make sure YunHo kept full control of his house. KyuHyun's guesses about those two were confirmed as they left the office, YunHo holding onto YoungSaeng protectively.

Having house masters who actually cared for Signs was a big step forward. But they still had a long way to go. And there were plenty of bumps along the way.

Sighing to himself, KyuHyun stepped back into Zhou Mi's office. "Well, we've got two fighters in isolation. DongHae and HyunJoong this time."

"... That dog is going to give me wrinkles," Zhou Mi sighed heavily, setting down his pen. "Have him brought to me, I want to find out why he was fighting one of the strongest fighters outside of the arena and I swear if it was because he planned on killing the tiger I'm stringing him up by his tail."

"DongHae's not that stupid, I think, HyunJoong wasn't one of the troublemakers," KyuHyun wrinkled his nose. "Okay, I'll be back." He turned and left the office again. All this running up and down stairs was tiring.

When he arrived at DongHae's room, he saw the dog wasn't alone, someone crouching outside his door and talking to him through it. Blinking, KyuHyun thought for a moment. This could cheer Zhou Mi up a little. He waved a guard down to get DongHae's door open.

The guard followed them back up to Zhou Mi's office, DongHae nursing a sore jaw and sulking a little. Stopping outside Zhou Mi's office, KyuHyun turned around and looked at the guard. "Stay out here with him please," he pointed at the second fighter with them, who was looking more than a little confused.

Knocking, KyuHyun opened the door and stepped inside with DongHae, closing the door behind them. DongHae bowed to Zhou Mi.

"Okay, so, walk me through the thought process here," Zhou Mi said, getting to his feet. "At what point did you think fighting one of the strongest fighters in the arena outside of a controlled environment was a good idea?"

DongHae's ears flattened as he straightened from his bow, lips pursed. "I wasn't fighting, I was talking to him. He punched me. I don't know why I ended up in isolation when I didn't even punch him back."

"Because there is a zero tolerance policy in regards to fighting outside of the arena," Zhou Mi said. "What were you saying that made him want to punch you?"

"I was trying to convince him to help us," DongHae replied. "I thought him being sweet on that Jung dragon would make him more open to helping, but he was stubborn."

"...What do you mean?" Zhou Mi blinked. "He... and the Jung dragon? The one he wanted to kill in the pretournament?" He looked to KyuHyun with a raised eyebrow. "So he didn't like what you had to say, why would he punch you?" he asked, attention returning to DongHae.

"Because I questioned if he really liked the dragon or if he'd just find someone else to sleep with if JungMin died," DongHae shrugged. "So he punched me. I'll need to work on him a little more."

"Maybe you should work on tact," Zhou Mi said sharply. "If someone had asked you after JinSang had died who you were going to jump into bed with next you would have punched him in the face as well! HyunJoong is someone we need on our side and if your best tactic is to piss him off enough to dislike you then he's not going to do anything!"

DongHae's lips pressed thinly together, tail tucked slightly between his legs. "I wasn't trying to piss him off, I got annoyed. Sir."

"Listen to me very carefully DongHae," Zhou Mi said, leaning over his desk a little. "There is no room for these kinds of mistakes right now. We are this close to having everything either go exactly as planned or blow up in our face. I could very well not be in this office tomorrow and if this were to happen on someone elses watch, you can be damn sure you would be getting worse than a couple of days in isolation."

"…Yes sir." DongHae bowed from the waist to the commissioner, staying like that. KyuHyun folded his arms across his chest, watching them both by the door.

"You are excused," Zhou Mi said, his tone gentler than before as he sat back down in his chair. "I mean it though DongHae... no more mistakes."

DongHae bowed again, turning and leaving the room. KyuHyun closed the door after him. "Well, that was fun," he said drily, looking back at Zhou Mi.

"Don't you start," Zhou Mi grumbled, frowning at KyuHyun. "What he said about the Kim tiger and the Jung dragon is interesting though. I want you to find out what you can about them."

"That's not that hard, practically all the fighters know about them," KyuHyun said. "Their smell is all over each other. DongHae's right to be trying to get them on his side, even if his methods need a little work."

"Then do what you can to salvage it," Zhou Mi said. "I have some letters to write... Let DongHae know I won't be fining his house for the fight, and since he wasn't the one who threw the punch he can be let out tomorrow."

"I'll let him know," KyuHyun nodded. "Can the letters wait for a few minutes? There's someone else up here waiting to see you, might put you in a better mood."

"Hm?" Zhou Mi looked up again and after he had picked up his pen to get back to work. "What, what is it?" He glanced at the time with a frown. "This can't wait? You have to get back down, the next match will start soon."

"I'll go, don't worry," KyuHyun grinned, walking to the door. He opened the door and waved in the fighter shuffling from foot to foot outside.

The dog stepped into the office, bowing to Zhou Mi. "You wanted to see me, sir?"

"..." Zhou Mi slowly got to his feet. "SungMin?"

"Yes?" SungMin straightened, and actually looked at the human's face for the first time. Both ears flicked up. "Master Zhou Mi?"

"I'm not your master," Zhou Mi laughed a little, getting to his feet. "Just call me Zhou Mi... it's so good to see you."

KyuHyun slipped out of the room, closing the door behind him. SungMin blinked repeatedly at the human before nodding, tail wagging behind him. "It's…good to see you too, I didn't realize you were commissioner…uh…am I in trouble for something?"

"No... of course not," Zhou Mi sighed a little. "It's funny, I looked right at you not that long ago and didn't even recognize you. I just... I wanted to see you, see how you were. I've watched your matches, I'm very impressed."

"Thank you," SungMin looked like he wasn't sure if he should bow or not. "I wasn't expecting to see you here, not since the Zhou house stopped competing. You…got taller." The dog was over a head shorter than Zhou Mi.

"Hopefully I'm done growing by this point," Zhou Mi chuckled. "I'm surprised you didn't know I was commissioner... how many Zhou Mi's do you think are in Korea? I don't want to keep you long, I'm sure you're tired... but I'm very happy to see you, and... I never get to say goodbye when we were kids, but I had always hoped you grew up well."

"The Kim masters are very kind," SungMin nodded, lips quirked. His nose twitched slightly as he sniffed the air. Whether he smelled the snake all over Zhou Mi or not, he didn't say anything about it. "I missed you a lot, sir, I'm glad you're doing well."

"Thank you... and I..." Zhou Mi frowned slightly, trailing off. "I wish you luck in your remaining matches. Thank you for meeting with me, one of the guards outside will show you back to the fighter's wing."

"Okay," SungMin nodded again. He bowed to Zhou Mi. "Thank you…take care of yourself, Mimi." He turned to leave the room.

"You too SungMin... be very careful," Zhou Mi said, watching him go. Sitting down at his desk again, he pushed papers around on his desk, not really focusing on anything. Not even the rest of the matches for the day.
 
 
Amaranth Pearbuckleapearbuckle19 on June 22nd, 2013 04:19 am (UTC)
I like the richness of the relationship they have now thanks to the history, good and bad. It's very comforting, like warm, creamy hot chocolate.

Tiger-Dragon hotness ... The moment Jungmin turned out to be a baby dragon in the first story is engraved in my mind. He was just so adorable! Cradle-robbing Tiger ... :D
NT59NT591 on June 22nd, 2013 11:48 am (UTC)
I agree with G's comment!
That Min turning in to a baby dragon kept me laughing all the day!! So adorkable! :D
TakaGacktHydetakagackthyde on June 22nd, 2013 03:00 pm (UTC)
i know right ^^
hyunaeparkhyunaepark on June 24th, 2013 12:28 am (UTC)
Mi and Min reunited for a bit :33333
so cute ugbr;gdfv;
but what's bothering Mi now :c