Nineteen

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2MIN

"News spread quickly earlier this morning after supposedly real photos of SHINee's Choi Minho and Lee Taemin kissing leaked online this morning at 10:52AM," the news anchor reported, a serious tone lining his voice. "The two had supposedly walked into fans, who had picked up their camera after they'd put it down to sign some autographs and evidently forgot to pick it up once they'd finished."

Minho sat in silence, Taemin was quietly sobbing to himself - his face buried in his hands. Key was flushing bright red (though no one understood why), Jonghyun was staring at the floor and Onew just looked as he always did: as if he wasn't exactly surprised, but somehow extremely shocked at the same time.

Choi Jin walked in frowning. He knew about this; it was obvious by the way he was slumped over and his forehead was creased. He was thinking.

"What the hell is this?" he asked angrily, taking a seat at the head of the table and folding his hands on the table in front of him. He didn't look at anyone in particular, but Minho could sense his anger was towards him and his... well, boyfriend.

"We can explain," Taemin sniffed, barely audible. Minho wanted to comfort him and tell him that everything would be okay, but Minho wasn't sure if that was even true. He wanted it to be true.

"No, you can't," Choi Jin yelled. Minho rarely saw him angry, which could only mean that this was pretty serious. "You've completely messed it up! You two are..." He couldn't finish his sentence - his teeth were gritted and his hands were now in fists. "There's only one thing we can do."

"And what's that?" Minho asked, feeling brave. He didn't want to hear his answer but it was inevitable that he'd find out. He had to be the one that asked.

"We're sending you off, on a holiday." He said the last word with such hatred that Minho saw everyone else in the room cringe back.

"Holiday?" Key asked. "But we only just finished SHINee's Second World Tour."

"Change of plans," their manager sighed, running a hand through his hair. "You're going to England."

"England?" all four of them said together, obviously shocked. All of them but Minho. He knew something like this would happen.

"But why?" Onew asked, though he was smiling discreetly - things had appeared to turn out in his favour. "Though I'd rather go some place hot," he added, thinking back to Thailand. He always talked of going back there, and to him, now seemed like a rather good opportunity.

"You need a break to let things cool down a give the fans some time to stop freaking out, and England is the best place for it. Most of you already speak good English," he said, turning towards Key. "Especially you." Key grinned, proud, despite the room still being thick with tension. Minho felt nothing but uncomfortable.

"London, to be precise. You two have already been," Choi Jin said to Minho and Key who nodded, though they weren't sure how that changed anything.

"Anyway," he continued, looking grim. "Pack your things for next week. The plane leaves early on Saturday morning. We'll pick you up at 8am from your home so you make it to the airport on time."

All five of them nodded before they were dismissed, free to spend their afternoon doing whatever they wished. Onew, Key and Jonghyun quickly said goodbye, avoiding all eye contact with Minho and Taemin.

Which just left the teary Taemin alone with his awkward boyfriend.

"Look, Taemin... Think about it; if this hadn't happened, we would never be given the chance in the future to come out - You know, with how strict management is. You've got to look at the brighter side of things - we're out! We can hold hands in public, and kiss in front of buildings, and do things normal couples would do. We can finally be together without the constant worries of being caught or found out. Taemin, we're free." Minho rambled in an attempt to cheer Taemin up, which seemed to have worked, as Taemin stopped sobbing and he smiled sadly at his boyfriend.

"It will all be okay." Minho reassured him and rested his hand on top or Taemin's. But it was all false. The way Minho smiled to himself and looked up at the ceiling after every sentence as if, he too, was trying to hold back the tears that were threatening to escape.

Taemin wasn't sure that it would be okay, at all.

Not only could this wreck their career, it could also destroy their friendship - and nothing was worth that. Not even this.

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