goldfish!au // pg
lu han likes his small, round fishbowl. he has a lovely view of the living room, a 9am wakeup call, and a two story polyresin castle; what more can he ask for? sure, the fake foliage is tasteless and the human who feeds him often pours too many flakes into his bowl, but lu han is a content goldfish.
and because he’s content, he isn’t sure why his human has thought it necessary to drop a stranger into his home.
"the fuck is this?" he asks, staring at his blond-haired human. lu han thinks he should get his roots redone, but he digresses. "the. fuck. is. this?"
"tao thought you may get a little lonely all by yourself. hope you and little xiumin get along," his human, kris, says with a disgusting smile as he taps the glass right in front of lu han’s face.
lu han instinctively flees to hide behind a mermaid statue and waits for his body to recover from the traumatic vibrations.
"i hate you," lu han deadpans. "i hate you and your little puffy-eyed panda boyfriend too."
this xiumin, or whatever his name is, is stupid, lu han decides after watching him swim around confusedly for fifteen minutes.
"nice bowl you have here," xiumin says, bubbling happy and stupid and ignorant. he continues to swim around, pacing in a circle. lu han decides he doesn't like him.
"yeah, yeah. it's nice." lu han paddles over to the other goldfish. "let me set some ground rules. one: my fabric greenery, my fancy colored rocks, and my castle are all off limits. two: when kris feeds us, i eat first and then you. three -- "
"you're a very demanding goldfish and i should just shut up and float in a corner?" if xiumin had eyebrows he would have lifted one with amusement.
lu han, on the other hand, doesn't appreciate this sass.
"four: keep your comments to yourself. i'm not afraid to smack a fish."
xiumin stares at him, bubbling lazily. "whatever," he drawls and turns to swim to the other side of the small round bowl. lu han glares at the way xiumin purposely wiggles his tail fin at him.
has lu han said he hates this dumb fish yet? yes? well it’s going to be reiterated.
he hates this dumb fish.
not only has he disregarded all of lu han’s rules, but lu han has found the dumb fish in his castle. and his castle is supposed to be a xiumin-free zone.
“what are you doing in here?” he asks, anger welling up inside his tiny body.
xiumin swims in a circle, either deaf or ignoring his question.
“hello? i asked what you are doing in my castle.” lu han frowns, swimming over to the other.
“i heard you,” xiumin says, still going in a circle.
you see, lu han was going to be nice. he was. but there is no way he can be nice to this fish.
“get out of my castle before i eat you.”
bubbles float from xiumin’s lips as he scoffs.
“has anyone told you, you have a serious territory complex and anger problem?”
“get the fuck out of my castle!”
he and xiumin stare at each other before the calico goldfish breaks the contact.
“fine, mr. territorial, i’m leaving.”
xiumin brushes up against him as he swims past.
“bitch,” lu han grits out.
“talk to the pelvic fin.”
puffy panda tao buys them a new tank a week after xiumin’s arrival. lu han doesn’t like it.
he is perfectly content with his small, round fishbowl, his fancy rocks, his fabric leaves, and his castle. he doesn’t need a bigger, square-shaped tank.
hell, he doesn’t need xiumin and lu han wishes the dumb fish would just die already.
he watches as tao sets up the tank on the other side of the living room, right next to his forest of houseplants — philodendrons, grape ivy, and a norfolk island pine tree.
the only good thing out of this change is that lu han will be able to watch television from the position of the new tank. otherwise, he hates his life right now.
“i bet you hate your life right now.”
lu han whirls around to face the shubunkin.
“don’t sneak up on me like that. we goldfish scare easily.”
“yes, i know this,” xiumin bubbles.
the more lu han watches the other fish make bubbles, the more cute the action seems. why doesn’t he look cute when he makes bubbles?
he bubbles himself but then catches on to what he’s doing. bubbles are bubbles and there is nothing cute about xiumin or the way he bubbles.
“did you have anything else to say or did you just come to tease me?” lu han swims past xiumin to his castle.
“nope…the only thing i can think of saying is bubble bubble bubble pop.”
in his castle doorway, lu han turns to xiumin and looks at him pointedly.
“you think you’re cute, but you’re not.”
“you just inadvertently called me cute,” xiumin states, teasing once more.
“did not,” lu han denies.
“am i cute?”
“are you lying?”
“fuck, you’re cute.”
and then lu han watches as xiumin swims off to float behind the fabric foliage.
the next day, they are moved into the larger tank. xiumin casually watches as tao comes over with the net and lu han doesn’t understand how he looks so calm because he himself is freaking out.
it gets worse when kris comes over because every time kris approaches the fishbowl he…
“you two ready for the big move?” the blond human grins, perfectly manicured nail tap tap tapping the glass.
both the wakin and the shubunkin dart off in random directions.
“get away from my (our, xiumin mumbles) bowl before i eat you! are you trying to kill me (us)?” lu han floats to the break of the water, rolling over on his back. “shisus take the wheel.”
“hey, tao. i think something is wrong with lu han. he’s on his back,” kris turns to wave the other human over.
lu han immediately rights himself and speeds off to hide in his castle. xiumin follows after him. this time, lu han doesn’t argue with him because both of their lives are in danger.
“kris, lu han isn’t even there. what are you talking about?” tao frowns, crossing his arms over his chest. “stop making up nonsense and come help me with the new tank.”
“hm. he was just on his back, i swear,” kris says, hitting his finger on the glass twice.
“leave them alone and get your ass over here.”
when the two humans shuffle away, lu han and xiumin peek their heads out of the castle doorway.
“if we live through today, i’ll never yell at you again.”
xiumin sighs and retreats back into the castle. “close enough.”
to lu han and xiumin’s relief, tao keeps kris away from their bowl for the rest of the day. the panda man is the one who moves them from the fishbowl to the tank as well.
the first thing they notice is the overabundance of decorations. there are figurines, plants, rock caves, and coral ornaments everywhere. it looks like tao bought the entire aquarium section of the pet store.
there is a “wooden” cottage ornament and the two fish swim to it. they inspect the fake palm tree in the back, the condition of the roof shingles, the moss covered steps.
lu han glances at xiumin.
“i’m not sharing it with you,” the wakin says.
xiumin bubbles. lu han dies a little bit on the inside.
“okay,” xiumin responds after a moment of silence. “i’ll take the castle then.”
at that moment tao sits the castle on the other side of the tank and xiumin starts to head over to it. he doesn’t get very far before lu han shoots off in the direction of the castle, scraping against his side in his haste and screaming “my castle!”
amused, xiumin bubbles and swims back to the cottage. lu han is really stupid, he thinks.
he’s traveling in a circle around his cottage when his senses are attacked by sudden vibrations in the water and speeds off toward lu han’s castle.
kris sulks and complains about how the fish always run away whenever he comes near.
inching out of his castle, lu han glares at the human.
“maybe you should stop tapping the class, asswipe. you just bought xiumin and you’re going to kill the dumb bitch already. tap this tank again and i will turn into the loch ness monster or a kraken and i will. eat. you,” lu han rants but kris only sees it as a steady stream of bubbles and he coos.
lu han huffs and goes to search for xiumin who is floating at the top of the castle.
“you know, i don’t appreciate being called a dumb bitch,” xiumin says.
peeking at him, lu han apologizes. “i got a little into the moment. i didn’t mean to add ‘dumb’ to your proper title of bitch.”
lu han hates kris but he loves tao (at least right now) because tao has bought a new flat screen television and that means he can watch his favorite dramas without having to strain his little fishy eyes.
it is somewhere around eight in the evening and currently playing ia a beer commercial. kris is out like a light on the couch.
lu han watches as tao pushes himself up from the leather piece of furniture and shuffles over to their tank. the wakin goldfish glances around to look for the shubunkin but doesn’t see him.
tao reaches for something beneath their tank and lu han watches the man curiously as he straightens his back. he has a bag in hand and dumps the contents of the bag into their water.
the small contents rain on him and lu han takes one in his mouth.
the tolerable human smiles at him before returning to the couch.
turning around, lu han dips his head forward in a nod at xiumin.
the two feast on the brine shrimp treat in silence. they come to a situation where one shrimp is left swimming around and they look at each other.
“it’s all yours,” xiumin offers.
“no, no. go ahead and eat it if you want it.” lu han waves around his pelvic fin.
“i don’t want it. take it.”
lu han stares and eventually eats the brine shrimp.
“thanks,” he mumbles, more happy than he intends to show.
“the mighty asshole lu han is capable of saying thanks? i’m shocked.” xiumin gapes.
lu han shows xiumin his tail fin. “i can be a decent fish. i just choose not to be.”
“STOP TAPPING THE MOTHERFUCKING GLASS, YOU ASS NUGGET.”
“you would think that with the amount of attention tao gives us, he would tell kris tapping on the glass is detrimental to our health.” xiumin sighs, floating lazily out in front of his cottage.
lu han has his fishy face pressed up against the glass, snarling at the pitifully clueless face of kris.
“if i was a piranha, i would have ripped his face off by now and eaten it for breakfast.”
xiumin rolls his eyes and wiggles to lu han’s side.
“hey,” xiumin calls.
lu han continues to stare at kris.
“hey,” he tries again.
“what?” lu han huffs. “i’m trying to see if my glare will make him spontaneously combust.”
this idiot, xiumin thinks.
“lu han, look at me.”
“what?” lu han follows xiumin’s instruction and looks at him.
something in lu han softens.
xiumin continues to make bubbles innocently.
“s-stop that,” lu han whines, “you are purposefully using my weakness to distract me. i want to be angry. i want to RAGE.”
“i quit. i cannot live under these conditions.” lu han retreats to the safety of his castle.
they were on friendly terms for a while, but lu han officially hates xiumin again.
“hey, lu han, i think tao bought us bloodworms— what is this?”
xiumin stares at the pile of small, multicolored rocks blocking the doorway of lu han’s castle.
he calls out to lu han and receives no response. no explanation, no sarcasm, no general rudeness so applicable to the other fish.
nudging the rocks, he slowly breaks down the wall; lu han yells at him when he pushes in.
“stay out of me castle, you demon!”
xiumin halts but more because of lu han’s stupidity than because of his demand.
“do i even want to know what brought this on?” he glances up to see lu han floating at the very top of his castle. “come down here.”
lu han squeezes his body into the small window hole.
“don’t you come near me. i’ll leap from this window.”
“you’re a domestic fish, the most you’ll do by leaping is delay me smacking some sense into you by about ten seconds.”
“how long have we been living together? because i still don’t like your attitude.”
a single bubble floats from xiumin’s lips and lu han shouts ‘GET OUT OF MY CASTLE!’ before he has a chance to respond to the question.
they stare at each other for a second before it all starts to make sense to xiumin. the shubunkin wishes he could laugh. laughing would feel so great right now.
“what is your problem?” xiumin asks innocently, another bubble floating from him.
“but what about the bloodworms?”
“i’ll starve to death if it means i don’t have to be tortured by you anymore.”
“but what did i do?” b-b-b-b-bubble. pop.
“I’M ALLERGIC TO YOUR AIR TRAPPED WITHIN A SPHERICAL SHAPED LIQUID. LEAVE ME TO DIE.” lu han plays dead.
xiumin waits a second for lu han to return to equilibrium.
“fine. more bloodworms for me. call me when you aren’t a coward and can handle my cute, okay?”
and then xiumin swims around the haphazard rocks and out of the castle. lu han watches him go, unappreciative of the shubunkin’s antics.