“How’s it going?” Bin asked, dropping down onto the floor of the practice room beside Dongmin.
“Good,” Dongmin said, pulling his knees in to his chest so Bin wouldn’t see how his legs were shaking. He’d come straight to the practice room after school. He had to get this choreography right before the weekly evaluation. One year. He’d promised his family he would stick it out for one year. If he couldn’t last for three months -
“Did you finally figure out that footwork? The part that was giving you trouble? Minhykie said he stuck around late last night to help you.” Bin looked concerned.
Dongmin bit back a curse. He’d had to swallow his pride and ask Minhyuk for help. Minhyuk was younger and already ten times the dancer Dongmin would ever be. Minhyuk was as good at dancing as Dongmin had been at academics at his old school. Dancing was effortless for him.
“I’m fine,” Dongmin said, and to forestall further comment, leaned in and kissed Bin.
Bin smiled into the kiss, soft and sweet, and for a moment Dongmin could forget all the stress of the day, the instructors yelling at him, the constant criticism and reminder that however good a student he’d been before, as a dancer and a singer he was nothing.
But then Bin pulled back and smoothed his thumb over Dongmin’s cheek. “Hey. You’re not fine.”
“What?” Dongmin asked, and he realized he was crying.
Bin gathered Dongmin in his arms and held him. “I know it’s hard. It was hard for me too at the beginning. I’m here for you. You don’t have to hide from me, all right? I’ll help you too.”
Dongmin buried his face against Bin’s shoulder and let the tears fall. “I don’t think I’ll ever get it. Math and science and basketball I get. But dancing I just -”
“Don’t think about it right now.” Bin reached up and petted Dongmin’s hair gently. “Let your worries go. We’ll try again tomorrow.”
Dongmin closed his eyes and kept on crying.
When he was finally out of tears, he pulled back and apologized for getting Bin’s shoulder all wet. Bin kissed him gently.
“Don’t worry about it. I don’t mind. Let’s go back to the dorm, okay?”
Dongmin nodded and let Bin help him to his feet. They headed to the locker room, and Bin did some homework while Dongmin showered, and they rode the bus back to the dorm together.
At the bus stop, they thanked the bus driver and then hopped off. It was Bin’s idea to swing by the convenience store for a late night snack of ice cream. Because it was so late, they held hands as they walked slowly back to the dorm, savoring their ice creams. They had to finish their treats before they got back, or the others would complain about not having ice cream too, and a late-night excursion for ice cream was bound to lead to trouble.
They paused at the door and exchanged sticky kisses.
“Forget your worries for tonight,” Bin said again. “We’ll work hard tomorrow. And don’t hide from me anymore, okay?”
Dongmin nodded and kissed Bin one more time. “I promise.”