Henry Lau's Love Column
Super Junior (M), Henry/girls, various, PG-13, 1865 words
Dear Henry, I need some advice on girls... Love, SJM
The thing about Henry that no one in China seems to have picked up on so far is that...Henry? Kind of good with the ladies.
None of the members believe it at first, but after Super Junior M's first venture into a nightclub (wherein Hankyung has been on edge and ready to go all night long, and Donghae is prepared to woo all the Chinese girls with his newly-practiced Mandarin pick-up lines, and Ryeowook really, really doesn't want to go), they change their minds. Before they get there, Siwon says comfortingly, "Don't panic, Henry! It'll be different from Canada but we'll be there!" and gives Henry's shoulder a reassuring squeeze.
He has nothing to say after Henry cocks a hip, grins lazily, and says the equivalent of, "Sup, ladies?" with his body language - and spends the rest of the night surrounded by more girls than Siwon.
"He's like...this hidden kung-fu master," Donghae says in something close to awe. "But with magical girl-seducing powers instead of kung-fu!" Donghae's analogies have always needed a little work.
"Like an incubus," says Kyuhyun dryly, his comparison pithy and much more apt. The members turn to blink at him.
"Where have you been?" Ryeowook asks. "I haven't seen you since we got in here!"
Zhou Mi smiles brightly from behind Kyuhyun. "We were dancing." He changes the subject in the face of the disbelieving stares. "Anyway, have you seen how Han Geng-ge is practically having sex with that girl over there? Henry may have more girls, but Geng-ge is definitely getting further with them."
This works well as a distraction, up until the point Henry winds up making out with two girls and Ryeowook covers his eyes and Donghae heads off to the dance floor to prove that he, too, can have his way with the ladies. (Siwon spends the rest of the night feeling like his pride or his manhood or both have been maligned, but at least Hankyung doesn't bring anyone home to their room. That's just not on.)
So Henry is good with girls. They all make peace with this fact, eventually. It knocks their worlds a little off-kilter, especially when Henry is being enthusiastically cute on television, making kitty faces, or being sweet to fans online, but they all remember The Club Incident. It will forever serve as proof that Henry Lau is a ladykiller.
Ryeowook is the first one to go to him for girl advice. He figures if anyone would be able to help, it would be the one with the most experience.
"How do I tell her I'm not interested?" he asks, twisting his hands together nervously. "I mean. I like her, she's so nice, and we've been good friends all these years...but I don't like her like that." He drops his gaze. "I already have someone else I like."
Henry loves to be helpful, especially when he is the youngest and therefore the most coddled. He knows it's an Asian thing, this hierarchy, and it's nice to be babied sometimes...but he's practically twenty years old! He's an adult! And he has had plenty of life experiences and all that. It's nice that he can be better than his hyungs at this.
So he squeezes Ryeowook's hand and tells him, "You have to be honest with her. It might be hard, so be gentle, but it's better not to lead her on."
Ryeowook smiles gratefully at him and Henry grins back.
It's good to be the one in the know, for once.
Donghae is next. His problem is significantly less serious.
"Should I call her? What do I say? Do I know enough Chinese? Maybe I should just stick with Korean girls." He throws himself across Henry's bed with a dramatic sigh. "But she's so cuuuute, Henry. Wasn't she cute?"
Henry actually has no idea who Donghae is talking about but he nods dutifully. "She was totally cute, hyung."
Donghae holds up his phone and looks at it with soulful eyes. He has her number, whoever she is, and has been angsting over calling her all morning. It's kind of cute, Henry thinks. He remembers when he was, like, in grade seven and crushing over the pretty girl in class, and it was totally obvious to everyone except him that she liked him. Good thing he'd worked up the nerve to ask her out, and they'd dated for a whole month. (A month was always a big deal in grade seven. Two weeks were a big deal back then.)
"You should call her," Henry tells Donghae firmly. "If you want, I can help you with some English lines. And some Chinese. Maybe." He thinks about it. "Or I'll get Zhou Mi-ge in here."
He knocks on Zhou Mi's door and loudly asks for help; he's told, somewhat breathlessly, in five, I mean, ten minutes, okay? Ten minutes later, when Zhou Mi walks in to Henry's room, pink-faced and grinning, Henry and Donghae have gotten down these two fine lines in Mandarin:
My precious darling, you are my everything. Come let me explode your world.¹
(Henry doesn't actually know how to say "let me rock your world" in Mandarin, and this is the closest he can come up with.)
Donghae is slightly offended by the way Zhou Mi nearly falls down laughing, but Henry thinks his English lines are better anyway.
Hi baby, don't you know me? I need super lover tonight.²
"She won't put out," Hankyung says, annoyed.
"Even though you're a big and famous star?" Henry is slightly disbelieving. Hankyung seems put out by this fact as well, crossing his arms and giving a sullen shrug.
"Okay," says Henry, "let me tell you the secret. You just have to keep touching her hair and her neck and tell her she's the prettiest thing you've ever seen. And then you kiss her and when she's not paying attention, you do this--" He is giving Hankyung a practical demonstration, halfway into his lap and one hand on Hankyung's thigh, when Ryeowook walks in.
"Erm," says Hankyung, flushing scarlet.
"Um," says Ryeowook, eyes goggling.
"And then you get your hand up her skirt and she stops complaining," Henry concludes, climbing back off Hankyung. He adjusts his baggy jeans, rearranges his t-shirt, and saunters off to help solve someone else's love life, grinning. He loves being useful.
Siwon's girl problems remind Henry of his girl problems in high school. That is, they are remarkably tedious. Fighting off all these girls usually ends up a chore.
"How do I make them go away?" Siwon asks a little desperately. "I mean, it's different when they're fans, but when we go to the afterparties and our stylists and all these other celebrities and executive people are hitting on me..." He makes pleading eyes at Henry, looking nothing like the buff, charming prince Henry's sure all these women picture themselves dating and marrying and having 2.5 kids with.
"This one's easy, hyung. Tell them you're--"
"I'm not gay," Siwon interrupts, protesting, gesturing frantically. "Heechul-hyung already suggested that and I can't say that, I'm not really, and besides, it doesn't work, they seem to think it's a challenge..."
Henry coughs slightly. "I meant to say, tell them you're married to your career and that you're looking for a woman who respects that. There's no way to lose in that situation."
Siwon digests this and a slow smile spreads acoss his face. "You're a genius, Henry!" He wraps him enthusiastically in a tight hug and then ruffles his hair. Henry makes a face, but kind of enjoys it, because. Well. So he kind of admires Siwon, okay? It's not a big deal. Siwon's so cool, everyone has to admire him. All the MCs on all those shows are always falling over him... It's not like it means anything.
And, anyway, Siwon is married to his career and looking for a woman who respects that.
Henry is admittedly shocked when Kyuhyun approaches him for advice one night late after rehearsal. "Wait, I thought you and--" he starts, but Kyuhyun interrupts him with an impatient hand gesture.
"This isn't really my problem... But how do you get rid of someone who won't leave your...'significant other' alone and doesn't seem to believe that they're actually taken and tries to flirt with them all the goddammned time?"
Henry wipes his face in his towel so Kyuhyun can't see his grin. He's schooled his expression into solemnity by the time he looks up. "Hyung," he says seriously. "I would just kiss him in front of her to mark your territory and all that. Oh," he adds, giving into that grin as Kyuhyun's expression becomes carefully stoic and unreadable, "you should make sure to do it somewhere private and make sure it's fast enough that she doesn't have time to get out a camera."
Kyuhyun's lips twitch a little bit at that, and he doesn't seem as grumpy after losing at Wii Baseball the next day. Henry takes it as a good sign, as he challenges Donghae to the next round of Wii battle.
"Ge, do you have any girl problems?" Henry asks Zhou Mi later that week as they brush their teeth next to each other in the bathroom.
Zhou Mi spits out some foam and rinses his mouth. "Nope," he replies cheerfully. There is a hickey on neck, just barely exposed by the collar of his t-shirt, and Henry smirks to himself.
Well, love advice is love advice, even if it's not just about the ladies. Henry is a pretty good sport about sharing his knowledge and experience with everyone.
Henry Lau is a ladykiller and he knows it. He's been like this all his life. He's happy to give advice to his bandmates regarding their love lives even if he occasionally learns more about their sex lives than he'd like to. It's worth the sacrifice, though, when Donghae slinks back into the dorm the next morning, sleepy and brimming with joy from last night's furtive date. It's worth it when Hankyung looks less tired and more well-rested (and well-sexed), when Siwon looks less harrassed, and...well, Kyuhyun and Zhou Mi are as smitten and smiling and ridiculous as usual, but Henry's gotten used to that.
As for Ryeowook... Henry lets Ryeowook fuss over his food and listen while Henry practices his violin, lets him tangle their fingers together and whisper to him during interviews. He sleeps with his head on Ryeowook's shoulder and smiles when he hears Ryeowook sing. Two weeks later, Henry the Ladykiller realizes he has a whole new problem.
"Fuck," he swears to himself in English, and resigns himself to asking for advice.
"Um," he says, not quite looking away from his shoes, because he knows Kyuhyun is laughing at him, "I kind of have a question. About. Liking guys."
Zhou Mi coos at him and pinches his cheeks and Henry thinks, despairingly, that he's just lost all the points he earned for being smooth with the ladies.
¹ "我亲爱的宝贝,你是我的全部. 来让我爆炸你的世界." - this is how it goes in my head, and I find it hilarious and awful.
² It was originally "Hey baby, how about dinner and a show? I'll show you a good time, if you know what I mean." But suxing convinced me of the error of my ways. Loling forever. Bonus points if you recognize this.