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14 December 2010 @ 04:40 pm
Fic for young_ah  
Title: For Want of A Nail

For: young_ah

Pairing: Kyuhyun/Yesung

Rating: PG

Summary: Sometimes games are more than they seem...

Author’s Notes: I’m writing this with the promise that there will be another part (if not more than one). Anyone who has read Hunger Games will recognize some of the themes. I hope you like it :) If it isn’t what you wanted let me know and I’ll write another of your choosing.


For want of a nail the shoe was lost

For want of a shoe the horse was lost

For want of a horse the rider was lost

For want of a rider the battle was lost

For want of a battle the kingdom was lost

And all for the want of a nail

- proverb


Zone One was usually a place of order and dignity, technology eliminating the need for the raucousness and misbehaviour of decades past. However, for one day of the year the monitors turned a blind eye and a deaf ear to the fidgeting and the steady thrum of voices as the candidates awaited the calling out of names. Yes, it was an honour. Yes, it was one’s duty to uphold the superiority of Zone One above all the other zones and to prove to The City that their nearest neighbor was worthy of the proximity. However every last candidate had the same few words running through their heads, no matter how much they wanted to deny it - Don’t let it be me. Kyuhyun felt that same nervousness, that same worry even though he’d been trained to accept the chance he’d be selected, as unlikely as it was. The Minister’s son was never selected in the Lottery - hadn’t been in the past twenty-five years, in fact, going back to the very first Lottery. One boy and one girl below the age of 20 were selected to represent their zone and only one could win the Game, the others casualties of a City eager to prove that it still held control. His father stood there at the head of the stage, a smug look in his aristocratic features - a look that quickly transformed into one of shock as the first name to be drawn was that of his son....

There was barely enough time taken between shifts for the Lottery in Zone Nine - anything that took away from work was looked upon badly. However, The City had proclaimed it so it must be done, the malnourished, undergrown children of the workers (and workers themselves) lined up to learn their fate. There were scowls and sighs of disappointment when the boy’s name was announced - Youngwoon was one of the best millworkers there, strong and muscular, and his presence would be missed. However, when the girl’s name was drawn pity replaced disappointment, the tiny thing barely of age to be chosen and far more frail than the rest. She didn’t stand a chance. Still, it was only fair...


End Flashback

Kyuhyun watched the others enter with a judgemental eye as he sat in the chair reserved for his Zone’s representative, paying close attention to the couple from Zone Two. Someone from his Zone or the other had won the Game for the past ten years running and he was planning on keeping the win streak going. By the look of the other boy, Changmin, he agreed. There were a few other candidates that seemed to have potential but most were just filler, a Zone’s obligation fulfilled via the Lottery and its citizens reminded of just how powerful The City was. The other Zones, leaders in manufacture or trade or agriculture, still felt the weight of The City this time of year - and the poorest, like Zone Nine, lost some of its greatest resources - its children. Only one participant in 25 years had won the Game and been from Zone Nine and that had been 23 years ago. People still remembered Kim Jongjin....

Reminded of that anomaly, Kyuhyun turned to look at the candidates from that tiny backwater Zone. The boy from Zone Nine was weird - even the other boy chosen that year from his Zone wanted nothing to do with him. And that was the thing - this Yesung wasn’t even supposed to be there, was he? It was supposed to be a boy and a girl - everyone knew that. Every other zone had a female participant except for Zone Nine (although, frankly, most of them seemed pretty useless. He knew his fellow selection from Zone One, Seohyun, was little more than a pampered princess who’d rather give up than break a nail). However, the proctors from The City hadn’t protested when Yesung had taken the little girl’s place - said it added some ‘drama.’ And so here Yesung was, sloe-eyed and slim, much shorter than Kyuhyun and seemingly awkward in his movements, bumping against the chair of the girl from Zone Eight as he sat down and quietly apologizing, not noticing the glare he got from her in return. There was no way this boy would last more than the first round, if even that.

Kyuhyun turned back to the proctors as one stood and approached the podium, waiting patiently for the candidates to find their seats. Finally when the noise died down the man cleared his throat. He was pretty, not just attractive but City Pretty, the kind of pretty that came from living in a place where anything could be had for a price. “Greetings, candidates,” he said in a gentle, refined voice, a dimple revealed as he graced those around him with a smile.

“I am Park Leeteuk and I welcome you to your greatest adventure. You have been privileged to be chosen by your respective Zones to participate in this year’s Games. The winner will receive all the glory and honor that can be bestowed upon them - and upon their Zone. Some of you,” and here he looked at the four from Zones One and Two, “have seen that honor given to those from your homes and know how great it is, while others,” a brief glance in the other direction, towards where those in the lower Zones were seated, “haven’t experienced such a thing in their lives. Still it is anyone’s Game.”

“This year we have chosen a very interesting terrain for you,” Leeteuk continued, adding with a grin, “and I promise it isn’t snow-capped or icy.” A couple candidates laughed nervously while the rest remained solemn-faced - a few years past nearly half of the participants had died the first night when the Game designers had set them in the tundra without proper gear. It had never happened again and no one had heard from those designers since. “You all have been permitted one small bag with a few items of your choice, items native to your Zones that you feel may help your chances. The rest will be up to you to find once you get into the Game. As you know, the first one to reach the end is the winner. Good luck to you all!” And with that the proctor stepped away, smile still bright on his face although there was something hard and calculating in his eyes.

Kyuhyun got up with the rest, wiping his suddenly sweaty palms against his trousers. He knew he had nothing to worry about, his bag filled with everything he would need to survive - GPS system, handheld scanner to assess vegetation for poisons, portable flashlight. He’d get weapons with the first drop of supplies. All he would have to do would be outsmart Changmin.

Kyuhyun was so deep in thought he didn’t notice the direction he was walking until he felt a body bounce against him, bag flying from the smaller boy’s hands. “I’m so sorry,” came the surprisingly low voice as he looked down at Yesung - and then saw the items that had fallen from his bag. A ball of twine, flint, a handful of nails.....Kyuhyun almost felt bad for the boy. Still, he chose the items didn’t he? He blandly nodded and turned away, but not before catching that friendly smile flicker with uncertainty. It was a smile that haunted Kyuhyun that night, preventing the boy from sleep. It was a pity that Yesung wouldn’t last the first day.

The next morning came sooner than most would have liked, sleep fleeting and rare. Kyuhyun and the others were loaded onto transports and taken to the Gaming area - and here they were to find out what kind of land they would be facing. Kyuhyun hoped it would be like the past few years - inner city streets or bustling cities with easy places to hide and strategize. He knew they had used jungles and deserts before too, though. However, as the doors of the transport opened and the passengers stepped out Kyuhyun felt his jaw drop. He wasn’t expecting this.

Trees, trees, and more trees. A seemingly endless forest sprawled around them, the scent of pine and spruce filling the air. He could hear the big kid from Zone Nine, Yongwoon, chuckling not far from him. Never before had they used a forest - a forest much like Zone Nine. He was never quite as grateful as now that he had the GPS with him...

“Lions and tigers and bears, oh my,” came a soft voice off to the side and Kyuhyun turned, catching Yesung as the smaller boy murmured to himself, a bemused smile on his face as he surveyed the area. Weird kid.

Suddenly an explosion from the side tore his attention away from Yesung and towards the transports which were now taking off, leaving a few random bags of supplies behind. Fighting had already broken out amongst some of the others and Kyuhyun could see one girl sprawled on the ground, unmoving. Without another thought he dove for the nearest bag, pulling out a phaser and shooting at his closest adversary.

By the time the fighting was over another girl and boy were dead and the remaining survivors had scattered, the lucky ones with new provisions. Kyuhyun had scrambled through the rough terrain, GPS in hand, to lead him to the shelter of a cave just as a storm was coming, moisture hanging in the air. The lanky boy used his flashlight to illuminate the back of the cave - and the first thing he saw was Yesung. The boy was a bit bruised but no worse for wear, his seemingly weaker body less damaged than his own. Kyuhyun was about to pull out his phaser when Yesung pulled out his own. “Truce?” he asked, getting a nod from Kyuhyun in return. Dinner was meager, dried jerky from Yesung’s provisions and a few protein bars from Kyuhyun’s, the items exchanged with barely a word spoken between the two.

Kyuhyun was studying his GPS when a burst of lightning filled the sky at the entrance to the cave, the glow unnatural and the sound that followed sharp and piercing - and the blue glow of the GPS flickered and died and no matter what Kyuhyun did he couldn’t bring it back. The scanner was no better and the flashlight batteries wouldn’t last much longer. Where was the advantage of Zone One’s technology? Wordlessly Yesung stood and approached Kyuhyun, the taller boy stiffening as he figured the Zone Niner would take advantage and eliminate the chief competition. However, all Yesung did was press a small, old-fashioned book into his hand and began to fashion a fire with his flint and a little of the twine for kindling, piling on a few bits of wood from the entrance once the flame had grown.

Realizing he wasn’t going to be attacked (although he wasn’t sure why) Kyuhyun relaxed and opened the book, finding himself smiling despite the gravity of the situation. Fairy Tales....why in the hell would Yesung bring along a book of Fairy Tales? Just the thought brought a childhood rhyme to Kyuhyun’s lips, finger sandwiched between the pages to mark his place, a rhyme his mother used to sing to him when he was small.

For want of a nail the shoe was lost

For want of a shoe the horse was lost

For want of a horse, the rider was lost

For want of a rider the battle was lost

For want of a battle the kingdom was lost

And all for the want of a nail.

He soon found he wasn’t alone in his singing. The voice met his, warm and raw and slightly hoarse, blending with his in a faint descant. Kyuhyun knew he was vain but he was also man enough to realize that the owner of that voice sang in such a way that it made his own all the better - and he wasn’t sure he could do the same thing. He looked up and from across the fire he met Yesung’s eyes, dark and deep - and something stirred in Kyuhyun. Perhaps technology wasn’t going to win this Game...perhaps there was more...

Yesung smiled.


young_ahyoung_ah on December 14th, 2010 10:45 pm (UTC)
Oh Thank You!!! This is fantastic. It' more than what I imagined! Can not wait to read more. I love the characterizations of Yesung asnd Kyuhyun, adn the idea of the the Game. never read Hunger Games before, but I am very interested in reading it. I can not wait for more! AWESOME!