taeyeon doesn’t say much. that’s the first thing tiffany notices about the small girl the others have taken to calling ‘rice cake’. the second thing, is that if there were ever a person pale enough to warrant the nickname ‘rice cake’, it would surely be taeyeon.
(seriously, how white do you have to be to get mistaken for some sort of yellow under bright white studio lights while wearing a yellow hoodie? real fuckin’ white.)
the third thing she notices, or well. part two of the first thing she notices, is that while taeyeon doesn’t talk much, she seems to touch people a lot.
and the girl has some cold fuckin’ hands – like being too small equals not generating enough heat or something, because tiffany always jumps whenever taeyeon puts her hand on her lower back or her waist, to quietly nudge her into formation or any kind of movement.
(to which she is eternally grateful. for the nudges, not the cold hands. because korea has some stupid strict rules about manners and she’d bungle a lot harder without taeyeon letting her know what to do and when, like some kind of south korean manner GPS.)
and part three of one, on the list of things she notices, is that after a while, taeyeon stops touching her. probably because she doesn’t stop jumping whenever cold fingers brush her skin and honestly, she needs to go buy the girl more food or handwarmers or better gloves, or something because – part four of one – she doesn’t want to stop being touched.
three; taeyeon has some sharp fucking elbows. tiffany learns that after she tells taeyeon she really appreciates the nudges, they’re very helpful and if taeyeon could keep doing it, she’d be really appreciative, but also her hands are really fucking cold, is she eating enough?
taeyeon had laughed then, and then resumed with the touching, except more mindful of her cold fingers from then on, because tiffany sometimes catches her sitting on her hands if she’s not wearing a hoodie with deep or warm enough pockets to keep her hands in.
and when she doesn’t have enough time to pre-warm her hands before touching, she nudges tiffany with her elbow and holy fuck maybe she prefers the cold fingers instead.
(no scratch that, maknae has the sharpest elbows, tae’s are fine. she finds that out after being unfortunately elbowed during a scuffle in the kitchen for the last chocopie. other casualties include sooyoung and sica while yuri and hyoyeon had run off with the damn pie in all the chaos.)
fourth on the list of things she’s noticed, is that taeyeon only touches people she likes. it’s not obvious at first, since she likes everyone on the team, and so touches them a lot. so it gets real obvious when taeyeon’s having a fight with anyone because she refuses to be within any sort of reach of the person she’s fighting with.
(four point one. she hates fighting with taeyeon because taeyeon refuses to be any kind of near her when she’s mad, and tiffany usually just wants to hug it out.
it’s how she learns to yell her ‘sorry’s because most of the time, it’s made through the room door, when sooyoung and yoona feel like playfully enforcing their leader’s wishes, and when taeyeon locks them both out of it when she’s especially mad.
four point two. taeyeon is scary when she’s mad.)
five, taeyeon is real cuddly, and tiffany is gonna fight the entire world and kick it in the teeth for trying to make such a cuddly person hard.
(“softness is not a sin. vulnerability is not a weakness, and damn anyone that tries to teach you otherwise,” tiffany says, if a little drunkenly, banging the table enough times that her wine half sloshes out of the glass and dribbles down the side of it.
“okay, okay, whatever you say, miyoung-ie. let’s stop drinking and go to sleep now, hmm?” taeyeon swipes the glass away, and dumps it into the sink, ignoring sunny’s mournful shout about wasting good wine.
“i know it was a gift, and we’ve finished enough of it, now help me move her!”
“seriously!!” tiffany yells, flailing a hand dangerously close to sunny’s face. taeyeon pulls it away from sunny and drapes it over her shoulder. “lissen to me…” sunny grabs her other arm, and together they stumble her back into her room.
“imgonna fffite them. i’ll fight ‘em, tae, you know i will. i gotcho back boo.”
“yes, yes, thank you for the sentiment, miss hwang, i will notify you first should my honor need defending.”
“you better. i’m gonna protect it so good…”
“good night, miyoung.”
“mmghg g’night taetae.”
five point one, hangovers suck dick, but at least she can depend on taeyeon to be kind about it in the morning.)
six. taeyeon has some real broad shoulders. it makes her look super good in jackets, and really lonely from any sort of angle behind. like it’s some kind of sad weariness worn with quiet dignity, like atlas carrying the weight of the world. and maybe her shoulders are that wide because god decided she’d need them to be able to carry everything.
(“is that why i’m short?” taeyeon asks indignantly, noisily stirring her cocktail as she slumps a little more onto her elbows on the island countertop. “yah, you guys, the stress of leader-ing this group made me short!” she yells into the wreck of the living room, at the sprawled bodies of sooyoung and hyoyeon half on the ground and on the couch, already half asleep. at yoona who is taking blackmail photos of everyone’s sloppy drunk faces, and seohyun who is hugging a still drinking yuri’s waist to sleep.
tiffany laughs, when all yoona does is come over and take a picture of haggard, half-drunk, red-faced taeyeon in response.
she turns it into a meme with a caption bordering on existential crisis the morning after, and tiffany doesn’t stop cackling while she and yoona try to fry up eight portions of kimchi fried rice for seven, complaining and hungover girls in the two measly frying pans their dorm owns.
it gets a dry laugh out of taeyeon too, when she’s less cranky about the hangover, so all in all, a huge success.)
seven, taeyeon is her best friend. this is a cumulation of every single good thing she has ever encountered in her life, and still, none would be so good as kim taeyeon being her best friend. every good thing, every bad thing, could be made better, easier, to deal with, with taeyeon by her side.
(seven point one, she might be a little bit of a lot in love with her best friend. and that’s a lot less easy to deal with.)
eight. taeyeon’s touching habit is now both blessing and curse. and how fortunate is she, that she has this to both look forward to and agonize over.
nine. taeyeon doesn’t actually like being touched. which is strange for someone who is so absent-mindedly physically affectionate.
nine point one. it’s not obvious because taeyeon has never shrunk back from her touch before, but when she did for the first time, oh god it felt like someone gut her.
nine point two, why the fuck is taeyeon avoiding her now, what did she do?
nine point three: hugging it out is not an option, and the thought stings more than it should.
nine point four. she misses her best friend a lot.
nine po nine nine point fi
nine point five. she is going to corner taeyeon and make her hug it out even if it kills her. god help her if her best friend hates her, tiffany really isn’t sure if her heart can take it.
number ten. false alarm, taeyeon doesn’t hate her. rather likes her, actually.
(“stop being so fucking dense, miyoung – no don’t gasp, i learnt that from you – of course i love you, how could anyone no-mmph!”)
ten point one, as far as confessions go, taeyeon’s is both not the best, but also hands down the ultimate confession and nothing will ever top it, and tiffany is over the moon.
one point five. taeyeon touches her butt a lot now, where she’d only ever snuck quick pats before. it’s okay because they’re girlfriends.
three point one. taeyeon’s hands might still be cold sometimes, but her lips are real soft and warm all of the time and they’re great. her elbows are still kinda sharp, and sometimes she gets unfairly elbowed for stealing kisses when she shouldn’t, but that’s an acceptable reprisal because kisses are always worth more than a half-hearted elbow jab or two.
three point two, she minds taeyeon’s cold hands a lot less now that she can personally warm them up with her own.
eleven: she can touch taeyeon back all she wants now, and life is so good.