Aug. 14th, 2016

avirjin: (Default)
Title: Intermission
Fandom: Exo
Focus: Suho-centric
Genre: Gen
Rating: G
Length: Drabble, 200 words
Summary: Junmyeon takes a short break.

Surprisingly, SM's rooftop is left unsecured. One would think that for all of the shattered hopes and dreams tiling its immaculate corridors, the company would be more cautious about that, but as long as Junmyeon's been a trainee, he hasn't heard of anything beyond small squabbles and lunch dates up here.

Regardless, that works out for him. The crowded practice rooms below are reeking of pessimism and sweat, and everyone he had bumped into on his way up had been testier than usual given the upcoming evaluations. They all needed some fresh air, though Junmyeon seems to be the only one to act on it.

He’s not surprised it’s already dark out after stepping out of the stairwell, the city lights already illuminating the skyline. Losing track of time is easy when the windows inside are covered by SM’s silly curtains and the only passage of time that matters to anyone is the length of a song. He takes in the late night chill, exhales as he turns his gaze up towards the empty, endless sky. The only stars in Seoul are in buildings like SM’s, Junmyeon remembers, his chest tightening in pure longing.

“Soon,” he tells himself. Promises himself.

Original Post: Here.
Prompt: To the Stars
Author's Note: Written for Round 2 of EM's EX'ACT Drabble Competition. I kinda wish I had reposted this a lot closer to when I first wrote it so my memories of what I was thinking would be fresher, but a lot has gone on since the competition back in June... I've been so busy lol. Hopefully I remember enough. I was actually really worried about this piece, because I thought it veered too closely to my first Suho introspection piece in Round 1 and that it would feel repetitive, but there's something about Suho's predebut experience that always draws me in? I always wonder how he felt during that time, because 5-6 years is a long time to feel uncertain and adrift... I'm kind of in the middle of something like that too which makes it sting a bit more haha. 

This was based off of one of Suho's interview answers from the EX'ACT albums, about how he would people-watch on rooftops and how it made him feel calm? He's mentioned it too when talking about scuba-diving in Fiji and entering such a vast ocean, and going to the Grand Canyon and seeing the massive view there. That such sights make him feel so small, that they make his worries seem smaller. And I think that's something that really does help him, considering how full of worries he can be. 

Other than that... I think I just really wanted to write a little about trainee life in SM, haha. I wanted to include as many references as I could from what I knew and what I've inferred, and there were a lot of lines in the last paragraph that I especially liked, like the star one. I remember faintly that I wanted to bring up that you can't really see stars in Seoul, so I was lucky to be able to make use of that. As for the title... I debated a lot on this -- you don't really title drabble submissions after all, haha -- but I decided to go with "Intermission" when I meant a "break" and Suho "getting some air". I didn't want to use "Get Some Air" despite it being a song title that sounds nice, but I did want that feeling... And while we know "break" is a temporary thing, the second meaning of it could've come into play which isn't something I wanted given its more permanent connotations. I didn't want to show Suho "breaking", I wanted to show him taking a moment for himself, reaffirming what he's doing and what he wants. "Intermission" worked a lot better in that aspect. Ha, so much thought into one word.
avirjin: (Default)
Title: Superstitions
Fandom: Exo
Focus: Chen-centric
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: G
Length: Drabble, 200 words
Summary: Jongdae is rescued in the mountains by a kind stranger.

“I would’ve frozen to death out there if you hadn’t come along,” Jongdae admits as they finally approach the village. Already, he envisions the fresh meal from the local inn, the warmth of an actual bed. It’s been a week since he last enjoyed such luxuries -- one long, cold week.

Minseok nudges him, stronger than Jongdae expected. “Don’t be silly. No one’s frozen in these mountains in decades.”

“Because your mountain god wouldn’t allow it?”

He heard the stories while researching his photography assignment, found them cute, but outdated. Maybe he shouldn’t have said anything though -- Minseok’s fallen unnervingly silent. Yet, when Jongdae turns towards his new companion, he only finds a playful smile.

“Mountain god?” Minseok chuckles, amused, “Didn’t realize city boys were so superstitious.”

“I didn’t order coffee,” Jongdae tells the innkeeper, puzzled.

“It’s not for drinking,” she answers. “I saw who led you into the village. Take it to our shrine, you gotta say thanks somehow.”

It’s not Minseok he finds at the shrine later, but rather his guide’s mirror image, etched into stone. At his feet are winter flowers, and other cups labeled with gratitude for the village’s protector.

No wonder Minseok had laughed.

Original Post: Here.
Snowy Village. (Concept Art of Kanbalar from Tales of Xillia)
Author's Note: Written for Round 2 of EM's EX'ACT Drabble Competition. I actually spent the longest on this out of the Round 2 drabbles, and it ended up getting the best score in the round so it was worth it, haha. This was definitely a drabble where I really felt the limits of the word count, and a lot ended up edited out just so I could make it. I really needed to have those two distinct scenes though, so Chen could have his revelation. A funny thing was that I debated a lot between using Mountain God or Snow God, but felt like that latter would've been to obvious given Xiumin's assigned superpower while the former was more... common? In folklore and legends and what-not. Mountain deities that protect the people living and traveling through mountains.

Anyway, if the story's not clear, Chen works as a photojournalist for some sort of National Geographic-esque publication, with his current assignment being a journey through some mountains, which he did research a little beforehand. During his trip, he ends up lost and the local Mountain God ends up helping out as usual and leading him to the safety of a mountain village. The villagers are completely aware of Xiumin's existence and even have an shrine set up for him to show their thanks for his continued protection. I honestly think it's pretty straight-forward, but just in case haha. I really wanted to include the coffee cups because it does move this story up towards the present, in a way the brief mention of Chen's job doesn't really? It would've been really easy to set this back in like... medieval-ish times, but it reminded me too much of RPGs (which wouldn't be bad? in this situation given the prompt's origin) and that was not an angle I wanted to go with this time around haha.

It was actually a surprise how popular this was in the competition, it seemed a few of the voters really liked my interpretation of the prompt lol. I personally felt it was kinda. Stunted? I guess that's the con of writing it and knowing how much detail you had to take out in order to make the whole story fit. I'm glad that it was still liked though.

June 2017


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