Rating/Warnings: PG for Changmin's thank you.
Summary: Jaejoong returns from a visit with his sisters with a new skill.
AN: for ranalore and elizacake, who encouraged me in chat.
Variegation on a Theme
Jaejoong returns from a visit with his sisters with a chocolate cake and a large plastic shopping bag. Changmin and Yunho go directly for the cake, Yoochun yelling that they are both wearing one of his shirts and he's going to murder them horribly if they get anything on them, but Junsu pounces on the bag, hopeful of presents.
"Hey!" he protests once he's got it open. "There's just a bunch of yarn in here!"
"Not everything is a present for you," Jaejoong informs him, tugging the bag away, although he does suggest that Junsu should try Jaejoong's jeans pockets and see what he comes up with.
It turns out that Jaejoong's sisters have taught him to knit and sent him home with supplies, needles and a stock of improbably-colored yarn, and for the next few weeks, any pause in activities longer than five minutes finds Jaejoong clicking the needles steadily, tongue usually sticking out of the corner of his mouth in concentration.
Yoochun gets the first present.
"It's a hat!" Jaejoong announces with pride, and Yoochun agrees vaguely that it sure seems that way, given the earflaps and the pom-pom. It's the part where it's bright, sunflower yellow that he finds more puzzling.
Fortunately for Yoochun and Jaejoong's friendship, Junsu steals the hat immediately, jamming it down over his head and beaming at them with tufts of hair sticking out in all directions around the edges, and Yoochun has no trouble admitting that Junsu rocks pom-poms just a little harder than he himself does.
"Don't worry," Jaejoong assures as Junsu bounces off to show Changmin and Yunho, "I'll make you a ne—"
"A scarf!" Yoochun blurts quickly, the first knitted thing that pops into his head. "Do you think you could do a scarf instead? Changmin stole mine, and it's getting so cold…"
Jaejoong is amenable to the difficulty level of a simple scarf and Yoochun congratulates himself on dodging a bullet.
Unfortunately, he doesn't anticipate the self-striping yarn. Or the fact that Jaejoong's mind tends to wander while he knits, unconcerned with things like counting and rows, and in the end Yoochun gets a scarf longer than he is tall, a puzzling rainbow of hot pink, teal, and the same sunflower yellow Junsu has been sporting for days.
"We match!" Junsu chirps as he tucks Yoochun's scarf around his neck—and around and around and around—and Yoochun reasons that it could be worse and gives Jaejoong a quick kiss on the cheek in thanks. He consoles himself with the hope that Changmin's present will be at least as ridiculous as his.
It is, in fact, more ridiculous. A few days later, Changmin is presented with the rest of the self-striping yarn, knitted into things that are sort of like fingerless gloves, only they extend the whole way to his elbows as arm-warmers.
Changmin shows his usual contrary nature by absolutely adoring them.
"They keep my hands warm while I type or play video games!" he gushes, holding up his hands and scrunching his fingers against his yarn-covered palms gleefully. "You're a genius, hyung!"
"They were easy," Jaejoong protests with a little scuff of his foot and a smile that is outwardly humble but means he is supremely pleased with himself. "You stop before the hard part, since you don't have to make fingers."
"Did he just use the word 'hyung' without any sarcasm?" Yunho asks, amused, but Yoochun only grunts and watches as Changmin thanks Jaejoong, his kiss neither quick nor on the cheek.
"Hey," Junsu asks a few days later, rolling over in the middle of the night to give a sleep-dazed Yoochun a puzzled frown. "Why hasn't Jaejoong knitted Yunho anything yet?"
Yoochun shakes his head, then buries his face in Junsu's shoulder to go back to sleep. In the morning, he repeats the question to Changmin, who stops shoveling his pre-breakfast cereal into his mouth long enough to say that he has no idea.
"We could go ask, though," he suggests a second later, grin wicked because Jaejoong and Yunho are still in bed, and Junsu perks up at the promise of invading the parents' bedroom for potential mayhem and embarrassment.
They sneak down the hallway, all cat's feet and hushed laughter. Junsu presses his ear to Yunho's door, but looks disappointed at the lack of sound, and Yoochun tugs him out of the way so that they can fling the door open, Changmin hollering a good morning into the dark room and getting groans in return. The groans turn to sharp protest as Junsu hits the lights.
It turns out Jaejoong has knitted a present for Yunho: Yunho's bed is covered in an afghan that is a startling combination of several different kinds of self-striping yarn and also seems to involve tulips of various terrifying colors. On the other hand, they discover as all three of them climb up on the bed to bounce the mattress and demand food and affection, that Yunho's present comes with a sleepy-eyed and wild-haired Jaejoong underneath, which is worth a whole field of neon tulips, in their opinion.
"It's soft, at least," Yoochun admits when they are all snuggled underneath the blanket, Yunho looking smug until Jaejoong steals his pillow.
"And warm!" Changmin adds, cuddled up with Jaejoong's pillow.
"Did you really knit this?" Junsu asks, fascinated with how the puffy bobbles of the tulips feel under his fingers.
"Don't be stupid, that would take forever," Jaejoong yawns, rubbing his cheek against Yunho's chest with a smug smile. "I crocheted it."
There's a moment of silence as they all take that in, the only sound Changmin's low purr and the soft scritching of Yunho's fingers against his scalp.
"So," Jaejoong continues, "I was thinking socks next…" and then his voice cuts off in a shriek of laughter as eight hands, two of them encased in self-striping yarn, begin tickling him.