“There’s nothing you can do?” Jaejoong cradled his head in his hands. He didn’t want to deal with this right now. Yunho just woke up, the stress wouldn’t be good for him.
“No. I’m sorry. Rights of the biological parents supersede the rights of emergency guardianship,” Changmin explained.
“When will she get here?”
“By tomorrow afternoon. I’m sorry. I wish there was more I can do.”
“What should I do?” Jaejoong sighed.
“I would talk to Yunho. This is going to be a shock to him. I’ll come by later this afternoon; once Jiyong gets out of school. He wants to visit Yunho and it will give us time to talk.”
“Thanks again. I’ll talk to you later.”
Jaejoong watched Yunho with Yoomi. He was a natural with the infant.
“What was that?” Yoochun asked.
“Come with me to get something to drink.” Jaejoong tugged Yoochun toward the door. “Yoomi will be fine for a few minutes.”
Jaejoong led him out the door.
“Yunho’s mother found out he’s here.”
“What?! Where the fuck has she been? Why does she have a sudden interest in him?”
“I don’t have all the details. After Yunho ran away, his mother left the country. I guess Kyujin turned on her when Yunho wasn’t there. I don’t think she knew what was going on.”
“Shit. What are you gonna do?” Yoochun sat on a bench.
“I don’t know. Wait and see, I guess. There isn’t much I can do. I don’t have any rights over Yunho.”
“Jae…” Yoochun bought three bottles of water from a vending machine. He didn’t know what to do to help Jaejoong.
“I’ll be okay. I just want to spend as much time with Yunho as possible right now.”
They walked back to the room quietly. Yoochun rubbed Jaejoong’s back as the walked.
“She’s hungry, I think,” Yunho said as soon as Yoochun and Jaejoong entered his room. Yoomi was gumming Yunho’s finger. “She’s gotten bigger.”
“She’s a good eater. Do you want to feed her?” Yoochun pulled a bottle out of the diaper bag.
“Can I? I haven’t fed her in so long!”
Yoochun laughed and handed Yunho the bottle. Yunho struggled a bit readjusting Yoomi in his arms, but managed to nestle her on his cast. Yoomi sucked the formula down quickly.
Yoochun handed Yunho a towel so he could burp Yoomi. She closed her eyes and was asleep in no time.
“Yunho, we have something important to talk about.” Jaejoong pulled a chair up to the bedside.
Yunho stared at Jaejoong. Nothing good ever came for ‘we have to talk’. “Is it bad?”
“I don’t know yet. Your mother wants to see you. She’ll be here tomorrow afternoon.”
“Where is she now? Where the hell has she been? I don’t want to see her!” Yunho didn’t try to mask the anger in his voice. His body vibrated with rage.
“She’s your mother and there’s nothing I can do. Just talk to her.” Jaejoong stayed calm, hoping it would help Yunho calm down.
“I don’t want to.”
“Yunho, if I try to prevent her from seeing you, I can get into a lot of trouble. I don’t know what’s going to happen, but please, just talk to her.”
Yunho held Yoomi out for Yoochun. “Why does she want to see me now? Where has she been for the past three fucking years? When I needed her, she wasn’t there.”
“I know, Sweetheart. I’ll talk to her tomorrow and see what can be done. Everything will be okay.”
“No! Don’t make me. Please? I don’t want to see her ever again.”
“Sweetheart, I know it’s going to be difficult, but we’re all going to be here for you. Changmin will be here soon and we’ll see what we can do legally.” Jaejoong ran his hand through Yunho’s hair. “It’s going to be alright.”
Yunho wiped the tears from his eyes. He hadn’t even realized he had started to cry. His mother was coming to see him. Why hadn’t she tried to see him earlier? Why didn’t she try to find him when he was a homeless whore? She didn’t care about him. Not really. The first time he told her Kyujin hit him, she hadn’t believed him. Kyujin was smart and didn’t leave bruises where people could see them. But Yunho’s inner thighs would always be covered with cuts and bruises. Kyujin knew Yunho would never show a soul because it would have required Yunho to strip naked.
“Yunho? Are you going to be okay?”
Yunho shook his head. He couldn’t stop the flow of tears down his cheeks. He couldn’t even look at anyone in the room.
“Come here, Sweetheart.” Jaejoong wiped the tears from Yunho’s cheek. Yunho leaned against Jaejoong’s side.
“It’s going to be okay,” Yoochun said.
“No. It’s not. She doesn’t care about me. Not really. She stopped caring when Dad died. She couldn’t even look at me.”
“Yunho,” Jaejoong whispered. “I promise everything will be okay. I’ll do everything I can to make sure you’ll be alright.”
Changmin sat in Junsu’s office with Jaejoong later that afternoon. “I wish there was something we could do. Hopefully Mrs. Jung will be willing to talk to you with out lawyers. This is a situation that can get really messy really quickly.”
“Mrs. Jung? Wouldn’t it be Mrs. Noh?”
“She’s using Jung again. She has been for the passed…” Changmin flipped a page over. “Year and half. That’s odd. There’s no reason given for the change.”
“Where has she been?”
“According to this, all over the place. She and her daughter traveled through China, India. All over Europe. She even spent some time in South America. Currently her daughter, Eunji, is enrolled in a boarding school in France. I’m going to assume Mrs. Jung is in France as well.” Changmin shifted through a pile of papers as he spoke. The details of Mrs. Jung’s past three years’ activity was faxed to him that morning.
“She’s been hiding from Kyujin. That’s the only logical explanation. But, why didn’t she try to find Yunho?”
“I don’t know. If you want to fight her, you have a pretty strong case for abandonment.”
“It feels wrong; to fight a mother for the custody of her only son. I understand why she ran and left Yunho. Maybe she tried to find him but couldn’t and Kyujin tried something. Maybe Kyujin went after Yunho’s sister. For all we know Kyujin told her Yunho was dead.” Jaejoong sighed. There were too many unanswered questions. And truthfully, Jaejoong was terrified of the answered.
“That’s a lot of maybes, Jae. We need to be realistic. We’re gonna need her permission for Yunho to live with you.”
“I know. Changmin, I’m really glad everything is working out with you and Jiyong.”
“He’s a good kid. He loves Yunho so much.”
“Is that healthy? He seems overly attached.”
“We’ve been talking about it in therapy. Ji’s been with Saiji since he was 5 years old. He doesn’t know his father and only vaguely remembers his mother. Yunho was the first person to treat Ji like a human.”
“I see. Want to get back to the room? I want to spend as much time with Yunho as possible before his mother gets here.”
“Okay. I’m gonna look over a few things and I’ll be there in a minute.”
Jiyong was laying on the bed next to Yunho. He was drawing a dragon on Yunho’s cast in sharpie.
“How are you two doing?” Jaejoong asked brightly.
“Good. I’m a little hungry,” Yunho replied.
“Alright. I’ll get us a bit of a late lunch. Would you like anything Jiyong?”
“No thank you. I’m okay.”
Jaejoong served Yunho lunch and smiled. Jiyong nibbled off of Yunho plate. At times, Yunho even fed him. He hoped that Yunho’s mother would be understanding. With Kyujin in prison, Mrs. Jung could move back to Seoul. Yunho could live with his mother and sister again.
And he wouldn’t need Jaejoong anymore. Jaejoong almost started to cry at that thought. He couldn’t lose Yunho. Jaejoong love Yunho, deeply. He had to remember he had to do what was best for Yunho.
“Yeah. What do you need?”
“I’m done eating.”
Jaejoong brought the dishes to the cafeteria. He wanted to speak to Changmin again. There had to be something he could do to keep Yunho. There had to be a legal precedence that gave him more rights than Mrs. Jung.
“Are you really busy?” Jaejoong asked.
“Not terribly,” Changmin replied. “Let me give you some advice. What ever Mrs. Jung wants; do it. If she wants to take Yunho out of the country, let her. Don’t fight her. It will only make things worse for you.”
“What about Yunho? Is anyone going to look out for him and ask him what he want?”
“I’ll be there. If Mrs. Jung decides to lawyer up, I’ll deal directly to with the lawyer. I don’t think she will though.”
“I hope you’re right. I don’t think I can handle all this.”
“Everything will be fine. I don’t think Mrs. Jung is a cruel person. I think she was just trying to protect her daughter. Even though she couldn’t protect Yunho.” Changmin tried to see the positive points of the situation. Yunho and sister were safe. And now Yunho could have his family with him. Changmin just didn’t know where Jaejoong fit into that picture.
“Jae, there’s really nothing we can do. Just go and be with Yunho as much as you can.”
The rest of the day was relatively calm. Yunho ate and light dinner and fell asleep early. Jaejoong slept in a chair next to Yunho’s bed. He rested his hand on Yunho’s chest as he slept.
Jaejoong served Yunho breakfast early the next morning. They had barely slept. The nerves of meeting Yunho’s mother were getting to them both. Yunho spent the entire morning flipping through the TV channels.
“When can I get up and start walking?” Yunho was annoyed. He wanted to get out of the bed. He twitched with irritation.
“Soon. Once you start physical therapy. You haven’t used your legs in over 3 months.” Jaejoong helped Yunho do the exercises Junsu showed him. “I think you’re getting stronger already.”
Yunho flexed his foot against Jaejoong’s hand. He wanted to leave. He wanted to go home with Jaejoong and maybe have some semblance of a normal life.
“When is she going to be here?”
“I don’t know. Late in the afternoon, I think.” Jaejoong massaged Yunho’s legs. His legs were so thin and the muscles felt so soft.
“And the fact that I don’t want to see her holds no baring what so ever?”
“I’m sorry. Just talk to her. Maybe she just wants to make sure you’re alright and safe now.”
“And what if she wants to take me away?”
“I don’t know, Yunho.” Jaejoong touched Yunho’s shoulder, knowing there was little else he could do. “I think that’s going to have to be something you need to talk to her about. You’ll always have a room at my house if you want it. You’re always welcome. Even if your mom takes you to live with her and you just need to get away for a night. That room will always be yours.”
“Thank you, Jaejoong.” Yunho snaked his arms around Jaejoong’s neck. He buried his nose against Jaejoong’s neck. He loved the way Jaejoong smelt.
Jaejoong paced the room nervously. It was nearly 3 in the afternoon and Mrs. Jung wasn’t there yet.
“Jae?” Junsu said as he knocked on the door. “Mrs. Jung is here. She’s in my office and would like to talk to you.”
Jaejoong followed behind Junsu. Speaking to Mrs. Jung was the very last thing he wanted to do in his life. He wanted Yunho to live with him.
Mrs. Jung was a lovely woman in her early forties. Her hair was streaked with grey and pinned back in a simple bun.
“You must be Mr. Kim. There aren’t… I’m at a loss as to what to say to you.” She stood to meet Jaejoong.
“I am too. Mrs. Jung, I’m not sure what you want from me or why you’re here.”
Mrs. Jung hung her head. “Please, call me Chaerin. I’m not sure why I’m here either. I just heard Yunho was found and that he was very hurt. I just need to see my baby.”
“I’m going to tell you the truth Chaerin. Yunho’s very angry and he doesn’t want to see you. He feels abandoned and discarded. I can try to talk to him, but…”
“You don’t know if you can talk him into seeing me. I understand.” Chaerin sat back down. “If he won’t see me, just tell him that I love him.”
Jaejoong was somber as he walked to Yunho’s room. He didn’t know what to say to the young boy to make him see his mother. Yunho made it very clear how he felt about her.
Jaejoong took a steadying breath and pushed open the door.
“I don’t want to see her,” Yunho said as soon as the door open.
“I know, Sweetheart.” Jaejoong sat in the chair next to the bed. “And I completely understand. She just wants to see you and tell you she loves you. Please talk to her. Just for a few minutes.”
“No. I know you won’t make me. So my answer is no.”
“Yunho, please. I’m not going to force you, but please speak to her. She loves you and just wants to see you.”
Yunho crossed his arms over his chest as well as he could. “She’s gonna take me away from you. She’s gonna take me out of the country. I don’t want to leave Seoul. Jiyong and Yoomi need me.”
“Sweetheart, I won’t let her take you away. And I don’t think she wants to take you away.”
“See? She doesn’t really care about me.”
“Yes she does. She only wants what’s best for you. If you tell her you’re happy with me and safe, I’m sure she’ll let you stay.”
“You can’t know that. You don’t know her. She hates me.” Yunho wiped his eyes.
Jaejoong wrapped his arms around the trembling boy. “Trust me. Your mother wants to see you and talk to you. I can stay in the room if you want.”
“I’ll be okay. Mom really wants to see me. Nothing more?”
Jaejoong nodded. “Just talk. I’ll send her in, okay.” Jaejoong kissed Yunho’s forehead. Yunho tangled his hand into Jaejoong’s hair. He took a few steadying breaths.
“Hit the call button if you need anything or if you want me to come get your mom out of your room.”
Yunho sat on his bed and waited for his mother. He hadn’t seen her in over 3 years. He was afraid. He didn’t want to leave Jaejoong. Yunho felt safe and secure with Jaejoong.
Chaerin stood in the doorway and watched her son. Her heart broke seeing him like that; tubes and wired connected him to machines.
“Yunho?” she spoke lowly. “My baby, Yunho. I’m so sorry. I’m so, so sorry.” She knelt at the edge of the bed. She couldn’t stop crying.
“Mommy? Why? Why did you leave me?” Yunho cried.
“I don’t know. Baby, when you left, Kyujin turned on Eunji. He started hitting me as soon as we got married, but I had no idea his was touching you. Please believe me, I didn’t know.” Chaerin touched Yunho’s arm tentatively. “If I had known. Baby, I would have protected you. I would have taken you so far away from here and no one would have hurt you.”
“Mommy, I didn’t know he was hurting you.” Yunho pulled on Chaerin’s hand, urging her to sit on the edge of the bed. She wrapped her arms around her son.
“I’m sorry, my Baby.”
Yunho tucked his head under Chaerin’s chin and cried. “He knew. Kyujin knew the guy who raped me and almost killed. He grabbed me again, from school. And they both…”
“Hush, Yunho. I know. I read the police reports and everything. I couldn’t protect you and this is all my fault.” Chaerin tightened her arms around Yunho. She didn’t want to let go of him.
“No it’s not. It’s not your fault. Is Eunji okay? Kyujin didn’t hurt her, did he?”
“No, he didn’t. He slapped her once in front of me and then never again. We left that night. We spent a week trying to find you. Then Kyujin found us. We had to leave. Eunji’s in school in France. It’s a boarding school and she’s safe there. She’s learning French and English. She’s making friends. She started dancing ballet. She’s really good now.”
“She’s safe and happy?”
“Yes. Very happy. She misses you terribly. She’s so smart and she’s never given up on you. We’ve had people trying to find you. It was so hard to search for you with out Kyujin finding out. But we tried the best we could.”
“Are you going to take me back with you?” Yunho asked slowly.
“Do you want to come with me? France is beautiful. There’s a great boys’ school. It’s the brother school to Eunji’s.”
“If I don’t want to go, are you gonna make me?”
“Of course not. But where would you live?” Chaerin pulled back from Yunho slightly.
“With Jaejoong. He already said I could. I have my own room and everything.”
“Are you sure? Yunho, I’m sure Jaejoong is a wonderful person, but don’t you want to be with your family? With me and your sister?”
“A lot of shit has happened and there are people here that need me. Yoomi and Jiyong need me. I can’t just leave them.”
“Yunho, Baby, they don’t need you. I’m sure they are being well taken care of now. You can’t abandon you’re family for…” Chaerin stopped herself.
“For what? For a couple of whores? Is that what you were going to say? Jiyong is getting better. And Yoomi is only a baby. We need each other! For three years, the only person I had in this world was Jiyong.”
“I’m sorry. I won’t force you to come back with me. But please let me stay in your life. Eunji and I will come visit you during school breaks. And I want you to come visit once in a while.”
“Okay. I love you, Mommy. I just need to stay here.” Yunho patted his mother’s head. He loved his family; his mother and little sister, but he couldn’t go to France. He had to stay in Seoul.
“I’m going to go talk to Jaejoong and Changmin. I know I have some papers to sign. I want you to be good and mind Jaejoong. I’m so proud of you, Yunho. I really am. You’re so strong.” Chaerin cupped Yunho’s cheek. “You look so much like you’re father.” She kissed his cheek and hugged him again.
Jiyong entered the room after Chaerin left.
“Is everything okay?”
“Yeah, Ji. Everything is alright.”
Jiyong climbed onto the bed and laid down. Yunho scratched Jiyong’s arm. “You’re staying right?”
Yunho nodded. His life was going to change, but he was going to stay with Jaejoong and nothing could make him happier.
“I’ll sign anything you want, on one condition.” Chaerin sat down in Junsu’s office.
“What’s that?” Changmin asked, hesitantly.
“You need to let Yunho come visit Eunji in France during school breaks. She can’t live with out her brother. I don’t give a damn about myself, but Eunji needs her older brother.”
“I don’t think I can promise that. Yunho is very angry with you. He didn’t even want to talk you.” Jaejoong spoke from the corner of the room.
“I know that. But I can’t go back home and tell Eunji that Yunho is safe and alive. And doesn’t want to have anything to do with us.”
“I’ll talk to Yunho. I know he wants to see his sister. He’s just angry right now. Give him some time and I’m sure he’ll come around.”
“He’s always been really smart. He started reading when he was 2. His father taught him. When he was 4 he started drawing. Does he still draw?”
“Not that I noticed, but I didn’t get to spend a lot of time with him. Chaerin, I don’t want this to be difficult for Yunho. I know you still care about him, but please understand everything he’s gone through. He isn’t ready to face it all yet and he needs to be with people he feels he can trust. I know he still loves you and his sister, but he isn’t ready to leave, well, us yet. Jiyong, Changmin, Yoochun, Yoomi and I have become his family. He’s in his room with Ji right now and he’s so much calmer. Yunho has a lot of love in his heart and he will never stop loving you. He just needs time.”
Chaerin hung her head. She knew Jaejoong was right. She couldn’t take Yunho away from these people. As unconventional as it was, this was the family Yunho chose. She knew, in that moment, that she couldn’t take her son away from the people who could help him the most.
“Can you keep me informed on how he’s doing? Give me updates on his life and things like that?” Chaerin took a tissue from the box on Junsu’s desk.
“Of course, Chaerin. I’ll call everyday. Give Eunji my number too, so she can call Yunho.”
“Thank you. Would it be too much to ask to have dinner with you all. I want to meet Yoochun and Yoomi and Jiyong.”
“Of course. Why don’t you go back to Yunho’s room and I’ll bring dinner up.” Jaejoong smiled and placed his hand on Chaerin’s shoulder. He watched her sign custody of Yunho over to him and hoped he was really doing what was best for Yunho.
Stuff and things that aren't beta-ed or edited much because I do this for funnsies and junk. But I do hope you like this...