players: Lee Taemin, Choi Minho, Kim Kibum/Key, Kim Jonghyun, Lee Jinki/Onew
word count: ~1,000
summary: SHINee celebrates Valentine's Day.
a/n: Written for themasterk3y for an exchange on Tumblr by SHINee Fic Fairies. More notes at the end.
Jonghyun unwrapped the chocolate bass guitar with a look of awe. “Wow… I don’t think I even want to eat it. It’s my guitar!” The others prompted him to guess, and he sighed, rolling his eyes to the ceiling in thought. Brows furrowed, he ventured a tentative “Taeminnie?”
The youngest covered his laughter with his hand and shook his head, looking to his right where a slack-jawed Kibum sat rigidly.
“Yah!” he smacked Jonghyun’s arm. “I worked hard on that! It’s not store bought!”
Jonghyun apologised profusely and complimented Kibum’s talent and artistry, meaning every word, but the middle member would hear none of it and waved a dismissive hand at Minho, telling him to unwrap and guess.
It was more chocolate, all nestled in colourful paper and topped with various nuts, drizzles, and sprinkles, sat in a rectangular box with a clear film framed with white lace. “Jonghyun.”
The second eldest pushed Minho’s shoulder sharply. “Jonghyun-hyung. And you guessed wrong.”
Minho looked rather put out, but brightened significantly when he opened the chocolates to find his favourite in the very centre. “Kibum next,” he slurred around a mouthful of nougat and mousse.
Kibum held a pink envelope with his name printed across the front in black. Inside was a card, and a photo fell to his lap when he pulled it from the envelope. He looked at the Polaroid snapshot and frowned at Taemin. “What is this?”
“Obviously, but why?” He looked at the card the photo had been in, signed with a heart. “That’s it?”
“He’s the present, hyung,” Minho offered helpfully, patting a pouting Taemin.
“I slaved over a hot stove for hours making that chocolate for Jonghyun, and you take a picture of yourself in your pyjamas?” Kibum scoffed and looked at the others incredulously. “How is this fair?”
“If you guess right, you get a date, so I’ll go anywhere you want, Kibum-hyung.” Taemin slid close to the complaining boy and knocked their shoulders together, smiling sweetly.
Kibum pushed him away, although the youngest simply bounced right back and wrapped his arms around Kibum’s waist. “I don’t know if I even want to guess.”
Jinki snorted, quickly covering his smile when Kibum glowered at him.
“You stay out of this. You have it easy.” Valentine’s Day in Korea was all about the boys. Girls would give the special guy in their lives expensive chocolate or more, while they were returned the favour a month later. Since the tradition had turned so PC, however, everyone and their uncle got sweets on the holiday. Even office workers offered small gifts of candy to their co-workers and bosses.
Jinki held a small red box wrapped with white ribbon, a gift of assorted chocolates, held in the paws of a soft plush rabbit from Park Sunyoung. The exchange occurred rather hurriedly with stiff bows, stumbling speech, a fair bit of blushing, and a couple camera flashes as a few fans witnessed the exchange and quickly documented it, igniting a round of suspicions and theories about the meaning behind the gifts, what he would give in return, and whether or not either was worthy of the other.
Taemin borrowed Jinki’s rabbit and held it in front of his face. “Kibum-hyung?” The bunny waved. “Don’t be mad.” The bunny covered its face with its paws.
“Don’t try being cute; I’m mad at you. You and Minho planned this.”
“Is it that bad that I really wanted to go out with you?” Taemin’s puppy eyes couldn’t quite rival Jonghyun’s, but Kibum was admittedly weak to the makanae and relented with a sigh.
“You could’ve just asked,” he huffed lowly. The bunny kissed his nose, and Taemin grinned at Kibum’s light smack.
“Would you two stop being gross and leave the rest of us in peace, please?” Jonghyun groaned, holding his precious chocolate guitar in the air to admire it. “We’re going to order pizza or something. Go out somewhere. Enjoy yourselves.”
“Don’t stay out too late,” Minho added.
“Call if anything happens,” Jinki finished, retrieving his rabbit from Taemin.
“Stop mothering. It suits none of you.” Kibum let himself be pulled to his feet by an eager Taemin, who ran to grab his shoes and coat. “Take a scarf!”
Taemin hugged Jonghyun over the back of the sofa, arms around his neck. “Thank you for the flowers, hyung. They’re very pretty.”
Jonghyun ruffled his hair affectionately. “You’re welcome. Have fun.”
The duo shrugged into their heavy coats and removed hats and gloves from their pockets as they left, already bickering about where to go.
The remaining trio sat in silence for a minute before Jinki suggested “Beer, pizza, and a movie?”
Jonghyun stretched languidly. “Valentine tradition. Why stop now?”
Minho volunteered to call for pizza, standing to get the number from the kitchen. Two extra-large pizzas, an order of bread sticks, and three chicken wing orders later, he returned with bottles in hand and flopped on the loveseat beside Jonghyun. “Twenty minute wait. What should we watch?”
Jinki nabbed a bottle on his way back to his seat from settling his gifts safely in his room. He didn’t have any helpful input to the movie aside from “Not horror,” so Jonghyun and Minho battled it out with poor arguments and personal threats until they finally agreed and all settled, Jonghyun tucked under Minho’s arm.
a/n: In case it’s not common knowledge or confusing, “PC” means “politically correct. In recent years, Valentine’s Day has seen a significant change all over the world. Where it used to be a holiday for spouses and lovers, it’s become very commercialised and has been made into something where everyone must be included. So, for example, in the U.S., schools have Valentines exchanges where everyone in the class got little cards and candies, even if the students didn’t care for one another.
In Korea in particular, adult women give their bosses and co-workers chocolates as well as their boyfriend or husband. It’s the same in Japan. In the United States, Valentine’s Day is reversed, with the men treating the women, and we don’t have anything like White Day, during which, in countries like Korea and Japan, the men return the favour of gifting to the women.