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15 October 2008 @ 05:05 pm
[Super Junior] Candles in Your Cake, PG, Gen, Donghae-centric  
For my favorite's birthday. Happy 22nd (23rd), Donghae-yah. ♥


Candles in Your Cake
Super Junior, Donghae-centric, PG, 1085 words
It's not the years in your life but the life in your years.

Disclaimer: Korean ages (standard years + 1). May not be historically accurate.


Candles in Your Cake
by meiface

When Donghae was born, his father took the carefully bundled baby from his mother's arms and smiled down at the small, pink face. "Welcome to the world, Lee Donghae," he whispered, gently brushing a tiny hand with his own finger. "You'll be loved forever."

***

On Donghae's sixth birthday, his mother baked him a cake, his brother reluctantly did not steal the first piece, and his father gave him the brand new soccer ball that Donghae had spent the past week valiantly not whining for. His eyes lit up with glee when he saw it, and he abandoned his cake immediately in favor of it, clutching it in his hands as if it were made of gold.

***

When Donghae turned eight, he had a party with all his classmates and neighbors. He was a popular kid, mischievous and active and friendly and polite to adults. All the parents in the community liked him, even if he occasionally kicked the soccer ball into their gardens, or thumped loudly down the apartment stairs.

("He's got spirit," they'd say fondly to his mother, who'd only shake her head and smile.

"Such a boy," they'd say to his father, "So full of energy. So passionate." He'd only nod and agree that he was incredibly lucky. Sometimes, he'd look thoughtful.)

It was on Donghae's eighth birthday that his father gave him a CD of his favorite songs, a carefully-wrapped package tucked under the fountain of colorful paper and ribbons from everyone else.

***

On Donghae's twelfth birthday, Donghae proudly showed off the new dance moves he'd learned from watching TV to his family.

"Not bad," said Donghwa with a laugh. "For a scrawny loser."

Donghae stuck his tongue out. "You're just jealous that I'm better." He didn't say then why he was practicing, still too afraid to form his hopes into words, not with the weight of his father's dreams on his shoulders. He wanted to see those eyes glow with pride.

***

When Donghae turned thirteen, he felt the first pain of rejection. He had received a letter three days ago from the company he'd auditioned for earlier in the year. They didn't want him.

"Donghae-yah," his father said softly from the doorway.

Donghae didn't lift his head from his pillow, shoulders tense with holding back emotion and swallowing down tears. How did you say sorry for failing the most important person in your life?

(I'm sorry I'm not good enough.)

His father came into his room and sat on the edge of his bed. A hand slid through Donghae's hair. "It's okay," he said. "It's okay, Donghae."

Donghae's shoulders hitched on his sob.

***

When Donghae turned fifteen, he celebrated with a mini-party and a cake in the SM Entertainment building, surrounded by friends he'd made over the past few months: Hyukjae, Junsu, Sungmin, Heechul, Yunho, Jungsu, Youngwoon, and so many others. He cried, but they were happy tears.

When he went home that day, so late at night it wasn't his birthday anymore, his mother was awake, waiting for him. "Welcome home," she said, wrapping her arms around him. "Happy birthday."

She gave him a bracelet that night, her eyes misty with tears and pride. (He'd never take it off.)

***

On Donghae's nineteenth birthday, all the talk was of debut, debut, debut, in hushed and reverent tones. No one could quite believe it, after all these years. No one dared to truly hope, even as they threw their best efforts into recording and practicing their dances tirelessly, as Hankyung wandered around in more of a daze than usual, as Hyukjae fidgeted restlessly all of the time, as Jungsu grew more and more anxious. It's going to happen, Donghae thought, and he had to take a deep breath and remind himself that this was what he had been working for all of these years.

"You're going to rock it," Yunho told him confidently over the phone. "The world will love Super Junior."

"Hyung," said Donghae helplessly, and believed him.

***

On Donghae's twenty-first birthday, he called home and he cried. ("Mom," he said, "I miss you. I miss hyung. I miss... I miss dad." He cried until he was exhausted and then Kyuhyun came and sat with him. His eyes were sad as he wrapped an arm around Donghae's shoulders.

"I know it's not the same," he said softly, "But we're your family too."

***

When Donghae turned twenty-three, he spent the entire day in the recording studio. He thought about putting out a third album for the fans, for the people who had built him up and supported him, who carried his success. He thought about Super Junior M, and how far Hankyung had come, how far he had come. He thought about Heechul and Kyuhyun and Jungsu, and their scars. He thought about Hyukjae and Sungmin and Yunho and Jaejoong, who had been there since the beginning. He thought about Kibum, who had come and left and changed.

"Happy birthday, Donghae-yah!" Donghee said with a grin, ruffling his hair as he passed. "Keep your chin up, we're almost done!"

Donghae smiled back reflexively and thought about Ryeowook, who had transformed in China, about Henry, who had shrugged off his birthday as unimportant just a few days earlier. He thought about Zhou Mi, and Jongwoon, and Youngwoon, and Siwon, who had carved themselves indelible places in his life.

He thought about fame and success, about family and a place to belong. He thought about music and dreams that came true, and the losses that would always leave a part of his heart sore and empty. He thought about his father.

"I miss you, Dad," he said softly to himself.

But then Hyukjae tripped over a cord and Youngwoon said something disparaging, and Donghae found himself laughing. When recording ended, Ryeowook gave him a hug and Heechul gave him a bag, theatrically announcing that it was his present but he wasn't allowed to open it until he was alone, because it might be inappropriate for the younger members.

Jungsu volunteered to cook dinner and Kyuhyun hastily volunteered Zhou Mi instead.

"Seasoning," Heechul said gleefully, "use seasoning!"

Donghae laughed and the emptiness ebbed. He let Siwon hug him all throughout the car ride back to the dorms.

(I'm going to be okay.)

"You're going to be more than okay, hyung," Kibum said quietly in his ear later that night. He squeezed Donghae's hand. "You're going to be loved forever."

And when it came down to it, Donghae was a believer.



***

Started/Finished: 2008.10.15
 
 
 
dear_whimsy on October 15th, 2008 10:15 pm (UTC)
How did you say sorry for failing the most important person in your life?

(I'm sorry I'm not good enough.)




crying.
&helena;uminohikari on October 15th, 2008 10:18 pm (UTC)
*wibble* I adore the last line ♥
カイタンmagicmelodyx on October 15th, 2008 10:20 pm (UTC)
I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS ALL DAY.

Back in a bit with a real comment.
カイタンmagicmelodyx on October 15th, 2008 10:55 pm (UTC)
...trying so hard not to cry right now. Bias or no bias, this hurts a little but in a good way, if that makes sense?


When Donghae was born, his father took the carefully bundled baby from his mother's arms and smiled down at the small, pink face. "Welcome to the world, Lee Donghae," he whispered, gently brushing a tiny hand with his own finger. "You'll be loved forever."

When he went home that day, so late at night it wasn't his birthday anymore, his mother was awake, waiting for him. "Welcome home," she said, wrapping her arms around him. "Happy birthday."

She gave him a bracelet that night, her eyes misty with tears and pride. (He'd never take it off.)


Ahaha, reading through it again to quote things IS making me cry! Oh, Mei, this is just so wonderful. The--adoration is really the only word I can think of to describe it--you've given Donghae's parents for their son is just so touching, I can't even begin to explain how much I love it.


Donghae smiled back reflexively and thought about Ryeowook, who had transformed in China, about Henry, who had shrugged off his birthday as unimportant just a few days earlier. He thought about Zhou Mi, and Jongwoon, and Youngwoon, and Siwon, who had carved themselves indelible places in his life.

He thought about fame and success, about family and a place to belong. He thought about music and dreams that came true, and the losses that would always leave a part of his heart sore and empty. He thought about his father.

"I miss you, Dad," he said softly to himself.


;_;

Donghae laughed and the emptiness ebbed. He let Siwon hug him all throughout the car ride back to the dorms.

(I'm going to be okay.)

"You're going to be more than okay, hyung," Kibum said quietly in his ear later that night. He squeezed Donghae's hand. "You're going to be loved forever."


You know, it wasn't even the tiny bit of KiHae I spotted there that made me love that last bit so much. I can see ANY of the members telling him that, and it'd mean just as much, because it'd be TRUE, and they'd mean it with everything in them.



Don't ever stop writing, Mei. You'd be depriving the world of something fabulous. ♥
dear_whimsy on October 15th, 2008 10:24 pm (UTC)
"Welcome to the world, Lee Donghae," he whispered, gently brushing a tiny hand with his own finger. "You'll be loved forever."



still crying.
scylladakyllascylladakylla on October 15th, 2008 11:17 pm (UTC)
Oh. Oh. T___T Donghae's father. Hae trying so hard to make him proud. I teared up so badly, especially at the childhood years. Oh God.

"I know it's not the same," he said softly, "But we're your family too."
Oh, KYU. ;__; *weeps*

But....
"Seasoning," Heechul said gleefully, "use seasoning!"
This made me smile

it's Bri, yo!: Heechul || the princesshelzfyah on October 15th, 2008 11:25 pm (UTC)
practically in tears, omg i loved it ♥
luminous being: donghae - grintaylormercury on October 15th, 2008 11:50 pm (UTC)
so by the end, I kind of want to cry. for multiple reasons.
I wish I had a group of cute boys around me like that :(

This was really sweet, though, simple but a nice little journey through the birthdays in Donghae's life. And I really liked how you mentioned all of the others too, and how they all play their own little part in Donghae's life.

and Donghae fhsklfjakfj ohmygod he is the favourite for a reason fjslfnhskf ♥♥♥
hiromireverokameorih on October 16th, 2008 12:10 am (UTC)
*supresses huge urge to smash board*
That was so beautiful ;A;''' His memories and the bracelet (I really liked this touch), family and 'brothers', the changes evryone is having and omg KiHae *diiiiiies* You just made my night very very happy *teary*
b r i ♥ *loveslipped on October 16th, 2008 12:47 am (UTC)
TT___TT beautiful from beginning to end ♥
you are so beautiful.: WARNING: HOT BOY PILE!waveless on October 16th, 2008 01:02 am (UTC)
i - words escape me. ;__; ♥
baby_buggsbaby_buggs on October 16th, 2008 01:43 am (UTC)
awwww! its so sweet i cant help but love it. XD
There's no obvious, rational form for sadness...: BW-Gacktmardigrasmaven on October 16th, 2008 02:01 am (UTC)
Mei... how beautiful was this? It was so sweet... and bittersweet too, thinking of his dad.. but it was so beautiful. This was really good... and you did his birthday justice. Happy Birthday Donghae, you are loved. ♥♥♥
holykeebler216holykeebler216 on October 16th, 2008 02:37 am (UTC)
He didn't say then why he was practicing, still too afraid to form his hopes into words, not with the weight of his father's dreams on his shoulders. He wanted to see those eyes glow with pride.


*CRIES*
Donghae♥ he really IS loved.
i y a f a c e。♡: donghae // oh my loveconflate on October 16th, 2008 11:18 am (UTC)

NO WORDS ;-;
ranwaeranwae on October 16th, 2008 03:29 pm (UTC)
HaeIsLove(d)

i have tears in my eyes and love in my heart

rara rawr!: Donghae - is too adorableblack_goose on October 16th, 2008 06:27 pm (UTC)
Donghae ;__________________;

("Seasoning," Heechul said gleefully, "use seasoning!" klasdljakjlsdlkas ilhsm)
trails of glitter, not comments (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧: yasu approvesjojibear on October 16th, 2008 07:15 pm (UTC)
When Donghae was born, his father took the carefully bundled baby from his mother's arms and smiled down at the small, pink face. "Welcome to the world, Lee Donghae," he whispered, gently brushing a tiny hand with his own finger. "You'll be loved forever."


"You're going to be more than okay, hyung," Kibum said quietly in his ear later that night. He squeezed Donghae's hand. "You're going to be loved forever."


WHAT A WAY TO START AND END THE STORY~! 8D ♥

I love this~ Just, like, love this to pieces and then all the way back again ♥
Ina: KiHaelilbabidevil214 on October 16th, 2008 09:52 pm (UTC)
Donghae didn't lift his head from his pillow, shoulders tense with holding back emotion and swallowing down tears. How did you say sorry for failing the most important person in your life?

(I'm sorry I'm not good enough.)

His father came into his room and sat on the edge of his bed. A hand slid through Donghae's hair. "It's okay," he said. "It's okay, Donghae."

Donghae's shoulders hitched on his sob.


^That made me tear up and sent shivers down my spine. I really love your more lighthearted work, but this was fantastic and about HAE!!! Anyways, it was heartbreaking and fantastic and beautiful and IDEK it was soo good @_@

Thanks for the touching sadness in the beginning and the happy ending! You're great!♥
man, I think that midget stripper game me herpesfading_sun_sock on October 16th, 2008 11:58 pm (UTC)
Okay, I'm saving this to read after the hectic crazyness and multitude of tests that will be Friday, so I'll have something to look forward to. But for now: spotting. ♥!!!
터미네이터 토끼: {강특} love/wtf?jaded_skys on October 17th, 2008 03:38 am (UTC)
OH MEI, I WIBBLE SO HARD FOR HAEFACE YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW. WHOOPS SPELLING FOR THE FAIL. SHUT UP, ILU.

I have no idea how you're able to do it, but this was perfect, as always~ It's sweet and melancholy and and and ♥~
★ Rhee ~: Cute! - Lee Donghaeskadihelias on October 17th, 2008 07:31 am (UTC)
The loveliest piece for the special day ;___;
My love is bigger than Gingerbread Man's Vitality: Maki too pretty maybe too muchgoldengutgirl on January 5th, 2009 06:42 pm (UTC)
I cried. Oh. ♥
Ricey: Changminricey11 on September 27th, 2009 02:56 am (UTC)
Very late but still...
How did you say sorry for failing the most important person in your life?

(I'm sorry I'm not good enough.)

I lost my shit.
This was beautiful.
addict for dramatics: donghae!ununoriginal on December 8th, 2009 12:16 am (UTC)
it really shows how much u love donghae from ur writing and u also make me love him more too :DDD
~the lemon to Yoochun's tequila~: hae!faceriofrio on February 12th, 2010 12:46 pm (UTC)
;__;

*mems*
aile_chan on June 6th, 2012 04:41 am (UTC)
How did you say sorry for failing the most important person in your life?

(I'm sorry I'm not good enough.)


Oh my God. ^ just hit a bit too close to home.
Forever crying. ;A;