Day 5 Prompt: Celebrity AU
“I told you, Prae, I’m not interested! Why are you even dragging me here in the first place?” Kongpob groaned and tried to yank off his best friend’s hold on his arm.
“Shut up, Kong. You promised me a favor and now it’s here. I’ve been waiting for this day my whole life!” Praepailin glared at him and huffed, they were now at the entrance of the stadium, the one nearest to the front of the VIP section.
“I’m not even a fan of him and I don’t like crowded areas.”
Prae rolled her eyes, opening the door as the loud screams of the fans started to pour out, “Arthit is the one who gives me life, who makes me breathe. His songs speak to me. And man up your introverted ass, you even wore your glasses tonight. Did you also bring a book? Please, you’re still a nerd.”
“Prae, I may be a nerd but I am not afraid to leave you right here if you push me too much,” Kongpob warned, pushing back his rimmed spectacles.
She led them to the front seats, literally just in front of the stage. Prae has been talking about this concert for months, repeatedly saying that she had to fight just to get these seats, and albeit Kong does not have anything against Arthit, the singer that Prae worships, the amount of times she has spoken his name makes him think of a reason to dislike him.
As Prae has stated, Kongpob was a nerd. The usual bespectacled intelligent boy, whom everyone uses to do their homework and get good grades. He doesn’t actually bury himself in books, thanks to his best friend who takes him out from time to time, but he would really rather read in the comfort of his room than be in an unfamiliar face with thousands of people.
Kongpob wouldn’t lie, Arthit’s songs were pretty amazing. But he hated it when he produces pop songs, as it blasts all throughout the university to the point that his eardrums would start to bleed. He admitted that the songs were a bop, but when he plays the acoustics and produces soulful music, it was in his opinion, the best genre of Arthit.
Not that he was a fan, it was just because of Prae’s constant playing of the music in the room, in the car, in class, in the library, and even while sleeping.
He noticed that the seats around him were already occupied, meaning that everyone was already here, at least in his section. Angling his head to get a better view, he visibly paled as the stadium darkened, and you could see the people, or more accurately, the phones, lighting up everywhere. He heard Prae scream beside him, and he knew.
The concert is starting.
He could hear the drumsticks being ticked together, a whisper of “one, two, three” and then a loud bang on the drum started.
The crowd’s screams were deafening.
“Kongpob he’s here! He’s here! He’s fucking here!”
And the opening lyrics of his most recent song started, Kongpob immediately recognized it. And as the voice resounded in the large building, there stood Arthit, not far away from him, smiling at the crowd and waving his hand.
A sudden wave shocked Kongpob to the core, the chills running down his spine as he looked at the singing artist. The wild fans were long forgotten. He was there. And he was—
“So? Did you enjoy it? Kong?” Prae asked him, shaking his shoulders as KOng absentmindedly nodded, focused on his phone.
“Hey! I can’t believe you’re not even looking at me. Arthit was a fucking masterpiece, oh my god. Kongpob did you see the way he sang those songs? The way he did his little dance when he was running to the front of the stage? Did you see—”
“I get it, Prae. He’s phenomenal,” Kongpob rolled his eyes, shaking his head. His heart was still a mess but he distracted himself by trying to not think of Arthit, who has single-handedly taken his full sanity with the three-hour concert.
“He is! He is! I think he even looked at me,” Prae giggled, leading them outside the stadium, where the fans were still buzzing with excitement from the concert that just happened.
Kongpob would never admit it, that the only thing he could describe Arthit after seeing him live for the first time was beautiful. His mind just went in that direction, on how Arthit’s glistening eyes just spoke the honest truth of how much he loved the crowd, the way his voice turns into this melody when he sings his favorite songs, and he could tell this. The way his fingers would pluck the strings when he was playing the guitar, and the way his hands would hold the drumsticks when he did his beautiful solo.
At this point, he couldn’t blame Prae and the others for being crazy about him.
But who was he to think of him this way? He’s really just a random guy who was dragged into his concert, and he probably would not meet him again. He scrapped all these thoughts as he made his way home with Prae, who was about to part with him as they lived in opposite areas.
The humid air of Thailand was not doing him any favor, as he felt himself sweating. Prae looked at him, as they stood in the middle of a busy street, and spoke, “Kongpob, I’ll go on my way now. Thank you for accompanying me to the concert!”
“Are you sure you’re okay going home alone?” Kongpob asked again.
“Yeah, my girlfriend’s picking me up at the next block,” Prae waved goodbye to him, and Kongpob nodded, going in the opposite direction.
He decided he would stop by at the small kiosk a few blocks from his apartment, and grab a drink or a meal just to quench his thirst and the heat was also getting to him. His backpack consisted of books and his necessities, nothing more. You could already see the nerd on him.
When he arrived at the kiosk, he smiled at the vendor, who has already known him for years, “The usual, Kongpob?”
“Yes, thank you khun.”
He sat down on one of the tables, and the shop was pretty packed, the only seat left open was the one in front of him. While waiting, he then noticed a hooded figure entering his vision, as they walked towards the counter. He could barely see the features of the man but the vendor was already smiling warmly at him, nodding as she took his order. She pointed to him, and Kongpob lifted his head, a little panicked. He was wondering why she suddenly motioned in his direction.
The vendor said something to the guy and the other nodded. Kongpob immediately lowered his head, the usual introvert move. A shadow loomed over him moments later.
“May I sit here?”
The voice, it was no mistaking it, as he heard this voice every single day. How can someone’s voice be so identical? Kongpob wondered, as he quickly nodded, and the man sat down, just in front of him.
Deciding to take a leap of faith, Kongpob looked forward, and he gasped at what he saw, “You’re—”
Hands were placed on his mouth to muffle it, and Kongpob felt himself heating up.
“Yes, I am him. But can you keep it on the down-low? I don’t exactly want to be mauled here,” Arthit chuckled, removing his hands. Kongpob scrambled and tried to keep his composure, aligning his glasses.
“Here are your orders,” the waitress came to their table, with two meals and two drinks. One was iced coffee, and the other was… pink milk? Kongpob looked at Arthit who just grinned sheepishly at him.
He could tell from his looks that Arthit had barely taken off his makeup, the eyeliner was still present, and his hair was still gelled, from under the hoodie. They both thanked the waitress and started to eat in silence.
Kongpob could suffocate from the amount of awkwardness in the room, and he was also panicking from the inside. Arthit, the famous singer and songwriter was in front of him right now, eating pork skewers and drinking pink milk, in all his glory. If he was Prae in his shoes right now, she would pass out. What the hell was Arthit ding here, and how was he able to go here? Did he just walk? Kongpob felt like he was losing his mind.
“Hey, um, you have something on the corner of your lips, are you there?” Arthit snapped his fingers in front of him which snapped Kongpob out of his daze, “H-huh?”
Arthit pursed his lips, then grabbed a napkin, and leaned forward, swiftly wiping the sauce from the corner of Kongpob’s mouth, “There.”
Kongpob did not know what to do, his mind just went into a glitch. His mouth was now hanging open, hands limp on the table as he gawked at Arthit.
The singer chuckled, looking at him, and said, “Cute.”
And now, Kongpob was sure he had no brain to function, no matter what his straight A’s says. He was probably choking on his drink. His fight-or-flight response was now acting up as he sped up eating his meal, never daring to make eye contact with the other. Although he could feel the burning gaze of Arthit on him, his cheeks were now deeply flushed.
After a few minutes of hurried eating and constant looks from Arthit, Kongpob cleared his throat and stood up, slowly giving Arthit a brief nod. Then he dashed away from the kiosk, almost jogging to make his way home. And when he felt footsteps behind him, he visibly tensed. Slowly the footsteps were louder and then someone grabbed his wrist.
Kongpob let out a yelp, “Don’t touch me!”
“Hey, hey. It’s me, Arthit,” the man tried to reassure him, and immediately Kongpob calmed down.
“Oh, it’s you.”
“Yeah. Um, I just wanted to uh… walk with you? Is that okay?” Arthit shifted in his shoes, biting his lip as he looked visibly flustered. Again, Kongpob was at a loss for words but he quickly composed himself, even though he was confused why Arthit would want to do such a thing, he nodded.
“What’s your name, by the way? I’m Arthit.”
“I know. Um, my name is Kongpob.”
“Kongpob,” Arthit repeated, letting out a small smile. If hearts could stop beating, it was probably happening to Kongpob right now.
“I saw you at the concert today,” he continued and made Kongpob stop in his tracks, making him stop too.
“You what?” Kongpob asked, his face paled again.
“Yeah, you were on the front row with the girl, who I assume she’s your friend?” the other guessed, emphasizing the friend part.
“She just dragged me there— wait no, don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t exactly dragged… I owed her a favor— wait, it’s not like I hated your songs… um, I love your music!”
Kongpib said that all in one breath, his mind a jumbled mess that manifested audibly and physically. Arthit was just staring at him amused the whole time.
“You don’t have to hide the fact that you didn’t want to go to the concert, but thanks for loving my music, I guess?” the singer grinned, and they began walking again in comfortable silence.
“Um, Arthit, why are you walking with me? Do you live nearby?” Kongpob asked, his curiosity getting the best of him.
Arthit started to stutter, “U-uh, yeah.”
“Okay,” Kongpob nodded.
They walked some more and Kongpob was still distracted in his own world that he didn’t notice he was walking straight into a pole, and Arthit tried to warn him.
“What?” And then Kongpob bumped into a pole. In front of the most beautiful man, he has ever seen. Just like that.
He felt himself being grabbed by the shoulders gently and hands were inspecting his face, “Are you okay, Kongpob?”
“I-I’m okay.” Kongpob awkwardly stepped away from him and continued walking.
Arthit looked at him from behind and laughed, “Adorable.”
Soon reached Kongpob’s apartment complex. On the way, Arthit made small talk, casually asking Kongpob about himself and it was a good thing Kongpob tried to make the conversation work by asking him questions, but he was careful not to ask any very personal ones.
Oddly, Kongpob felt comfortable, too comfortable in Arthit’s presence, despite just meeting him a few hours ago. He slowed his steps to a stop, which caused Arthit to look at him.
“My apartment is here,” Kongpob gestured to the building. Arthit gave the building a once-over and nodded, “Okay.”
“I’m going now. Um, stay safe getting home, and uh, thank you for walking with me,” Kongpob stammered, blushing. Arthit gazed at him in concentration.
The other felt uncomfortable with the gaze and he figured Arthit was not going to say anything, he turned on his heel and started to walk away. He felt reluctant just going back, he felt like he should have done something like there was something he was missing. With a frown, he pushed open the door, but he heard a yell out to call him.
Turning around, he saw Arthit handing him a piece of folded paper. Kongpob took it hesitantly and gave him a questioning look, Arthit just smirked at him and waved goodbye, “See you again, Kongpob.”
Without another word, he walked away and disappeared from Kongpob’s vision.
Kongpob’s cheeks were still flushed, like the majority of the night, and he opened the paper, only to find something scribbled on it,
He felt himself smiling like an idiot.
Meanwhile, Arthit was pacing down the street. Taking out his phone, he dialed his manager, “Hello P’Prem?”
“Arthit, where the hell are you? You told me you would just grab a snack, but you’re still not back at the hotel!”
“I know, I’m sorry. Can you pick me up? I’m at Supsada Street,” Arthit pleaded, his legs about to give out. Prem ended the call, after cursing at him many times.
Arthit scratched the back of his head but felt his heart quicken at the thought of what just happened. He had just talked to the most adorable person he has ever met in his life and shamelessly gave him his number after making up an excuse to walk with him. He remembered looking at him from the stage, those big eyes staring at him from behind the glasses. The cute flannel he wore, and the small scowls he gave to the overjoyed fans. It already captivated him to the core.
And coincidentally meeting him at his aunt’s local kiosk? He swore to himself he would never let him go again.
Maybe being a celebrity has its perks. After all, it’s why he met Kongpob in the first place.
Chapter 2: Part Two
Prae finds out.
"You won't believe what just happened, Prae."
"Ugh, I'm already tired from last night, and we had to attend class at 8 AM. What the hell, Kong?" Prae nearly staggered on the sidewalk as they walked to the cafeteria. The open area now in sight as the busy stream of students were buzzing from ordering, Kongpob halted her steps, "What, Kongpob?"
"Last night!" He exclaimed, and Prae lifted a brow.
"Was the concert, yes."
"I mean, last night, after we parted ways," Kongpob paused, feeling the excitement and jitters overwhelm him as he struggled to say the next words.
"Spit it out. I'm already starving."
"I met Arthit."
"You met Arthit? I didn't know that was a common name," Prae was still unimpressed.
"It isn't. Because I met the person who you came for the concert last night, the Arthit," Kongpob said, firmer this time. Determined to make her believe him.
"Kong now is not the time to make jokes, now if you'll excuse me I'll go on to buy that pork curry in the stall," she shrugged and made her way away from him. Kongpob was dumbfounded at her reaction and started to follow her.
Starting to catch up to her, and hurriedly purchasing his lunch, he went to the table they usually sat where Prae was happily eating, unbothered.
"Shut up, Kong. Let me eat in peace," she continued to eat her food. as Kongpob facepalmed himself.
"I met Arthit last night after we parted ways. We met at the small kiosk, he sat on the same booth as me," Kongpob tried to explain, and Prae just raised another unimpressed eyebrow at him.
"Oh, I get it."
"What?" Kongpob looked at her and his guess is that his message did not come across that well, "You're playing a prank on me because I dragged you into the concert."
"Oh my god," the male banged his head on the table, exasperated.
Kongpob knew it wouldn't go through her thick skull if he didn't resort to bigger actions, and if needed be, he should have done it in the first place. Pulling out his phone from his pocket, he dialed a phone number he has already saved since last night.
"Hi, this is Arthit, right?" Kongpob asked, and Prae's full attention was now all on him as she watched him carefully.
"Yes, this is Kongpob, right? I know your voice," Kongpob on the other end of the call felt his ears flushing as he heard Arthit's voice, a lot warmer than usual. But he was always warm to him.
"Right. Um, remember that friend I told you who was a big fan of yours, and I was encouraged to accompany her?"
"Well, she's with me right now. I was wondering if you could say hi to her? She's very doubtful of me," he sent a sharp look to the girl beside him whose jaw is now on the floor.
"Uh, okay. Sure!"
Kongpob gave his phone to Prae, looking so frozen with her eyes bulging out of her sockets as she put the phone to her ear, "H-Hello?"
"Hi! I'm Arthit. I don't know how I can prove it to you but Kongpob is telling the truth!"
"What the hell, Prae? You dropped my phone!" Kongpob glared at her as he reached underneath the table to pick it up, and when he looked back at her again, she looked like she was a ghost, or has seen a ghost, because she was so pale, and her mouth was just open, flies could fall inside it.
"Hello? Kongpob? Is everything alright?"
"Yeah, yeah. The one you were talking to earlier, Prae, she's now frozen," Kongpob heard a laugh coming from the other side of the phone and his heart fluttered a little bit, but that was for another conversation.
He then felt a sharp tug on his arm, "Ow, Prae! What?"
"Can you put down the phone?" Prae begged him with tightly pursed lips, her voice was inaudible to anyone on the phone.
"Hey, um, Arthit? I need to go. Can we call tonight— I mean, next time?" Kongpob cursed himself for slipping out of character, it was embarrassing, like asking him out on a date or making him assume that they could call each other nightly.
"Okay, sure! You know, Kongpob, if you wanted a date, you could just ask me, you know? I'm a busy man, but never busy for you."
Kongpob felt like this conversation was going in a direction he was terrified of going through. Feeling another tug on his arm, he swallowed the lump in his throat and quickly said before hanging up, "We'll talk about dates next time!"
This man was done for.
"Why the fuck did you not tell me that you met the greatest musician of our generation sooner?"
Ah, Kongpob knew this was coming, "I was trying to tell you."
"Kong, you bitch! I embarrassed myself in front of him!" Prae was now on the verge of tears, Kongpob just rolled his eyes at her. She was a drama queen sometimes, "It's not a big deal, he's just Arthit."
"It's just Arthit my ass! You talk like you've known him your whole life! I'm so fucking humiliated," she put her head in her hands and wailed, it was grabbing the attention of the other students around them. The male beside her shook his head, "He's nice, he wouldn't even think of anything bad about you."
"As far as I know, Kongpob, you are an extreme introvert, how the hell can you talk to him like that?"
"It's easier when it's on the phone," he shrugged.
"No, I know you. You wouldn't be that comfortable unless... you like him!" Like a light bulb popped on top of Prae's head, Kongpob burst into a tomato, "You've got it all wrong! He was just so nice to me, it's not like he wants to date me—"
"Who said I was talking about romance? I've caught you now, Kongpob. After you deliberately embarrassed me in front of my idol, you just went and snagged him up like a shopping haul!"
"Oh my god."
He felt himself being nudged in the shoulder too many times, Prae was actually poking her. Internally she was feeling very conflicted if she should condemn him or cheer him on, probably both, "You have to let me meet him! I'm the one who brought you two together after all."
"Whoever said it was your doing?"
"You owe me big time, Kongpob. Now go set up a meet date or I will hack into your phone and tell Arthit that your gay ass is waiting for him to ask you out," Prae raised one eyebrow and Kongpob sighed. Sometimes, he regretted ever telling Praepailin that he was into men, it proved to be a big mistake right now.
"While you're at it, ask him out on a date, I want to be the cool aunt of your adopted babies. And I can get free concert tickets!"