taehyungq · 2 days ago
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this little dork 🥺 for @loversmore ♡
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hobisuniverse · 2 days ago
Silver Locks [MYG] (18+)
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➴ Pairing: Yoongi x reader | WC: 2.1k | Genre: smut | Rating: 18+
➴ Warnings: this is a pwp. Those under 18 years of age should not be interacting with this work. Mentions of an ACL injury.
➴ Tags: exhibitionism kink, domme!reader, slightly bratty sub!Yoongi, marking, unprotected sex, clothed sex, grinding, thigh riding, slight dirty talk, biting, creampie
➴ Summary: There are a few ways to distract your lover from an injury that prevents him from performing in front of his fans. You happen to know his favourite.
➴ A/N: many thanks for the darling @triviafics​ for betaing this and doing it way before the deadline so I could release this early!!
Dedicated to my soulmate and lover of all things Yoongi, @joheunsaram​, as well as my Yoongi fanatics @sugasbabiie and @yoon2k
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You feel a tingling on the nape of your neck, a surefire sign that someone is watching you. It would’ve been unnerving if you aren’t surrounded by people you trust, but you look up regardless.
That is mistake number one. Min Yoongi, better known to the world as worldwide boy band BTS’s Suga or Agust D, is boring a hole into your skull with his stare, alight and a fire burning in his gaze. You tamp down on the smirk that threatens to overtake your lips and return to styling Namjoon’s hair, now keenly aware of the culprit responsible for the hair-raising sensation.
Mistake number two is not paying attention to the clock on the wall. If you’d glanced at it, you would’ve seen that it was time for the boys to reunite with their fans for the last couple of performances for the evening before the concert wrapped up. As a result, Namjoon shoots you a sheepish smile as he ducks out from under your hair gel-covered hands and runs with the rest of the members to the door, awaiting the stage lift that serves to bring them once again in front of their adoring fans.
Yoongi stays where he is, watching them with an unhappy expression as he absentmindedly rubs his ankle. He would’ve been joining them in rushing to the stage if he hadn’t badly torn his ACL and was under strict orders to not move unless strictly necessary.
Suddenly acutely aware that you and Yoongi are the only ones left in the dressing room, you shift awkwardly from foot to foot as you wipe your hands on a nearby towel. Mistake number three. 
You’d forgotten that you were wearing a curve-hugging dress that flared at the waist, with no underwear as per Yoongi’s request.
The unexpected movement that your thighs create against your clitoris have you sucking in a quiet gasp, though it doesn’t escape Yoongi’s attention. With a cocked eyebrow and a slight tilt of the head, he rakes his eyes up and down your figure before he notices the telltale shapes of your legs under your black dress.
“A little too much friction?” he asks, smirking. You scowl at him. He knows the answer, and yet he still wants you to answer it, mainly because he enjoys the way your cheeks heat up under the attention.
“We’re running out of time if you want a quickie,” you offer as a proposition. Yoongi nods, and you relish in the way his lips part just a miniscule amount in a show of how aroused he actually is. That, and the noticeable tent in his slacks.
You groan with need, feeling a rush of warmth pooling in your lower abdomen as you stride over to him, placing your hands on his shoulders. The fabric under your palms feels hot to the touch, and knowing that it’s not the warm atmosphere of the dressing room that’s made him this heated sends a pleasurable tingle down your spine.
You offer no other words to set the mood, knowing that your time is running out with each passing second. Instead, you sit firmly behind the bulge in his pants so that it presses against your core and wrap a hand around the back of Yoongi’s neck, pulling him in for a kiss that leaves you both breathless.
No sooner than you’ve pulled back to gasp for air does he pull you right back, moulding his mouth against yours as he scrapes his teeth against your sensitive lower lip. You growl into the kiss, knowing he’s testing you to see if you’re up for dominance today.
The answer is yes. An unrelenting, selfish, needy, yes. Forget the reason for wanting to take control today is borne from a combination of wanting to get back at your boyfriend for convincing you to go panty-less and distracting him from the fact that he can’t go on stage to see his fans. The point is that you want dominance, and you will have it now.
You grind hard against Yoongi’s clothed erection, ripping a moan out of his throat as the pleasure causes his brain to temporarily short circuit. He throws his head back, unwittingly exposing his throat to you.
You pounce on it immediately without thinking consciously, like a hunter finally given an opportunity to capture its prey after waiting an excruciating amount of hours. You gently bite the area where his carotid artery is throbbing away, supplying life giving blood to his brain. Yoongi hisses, but it’s a sound from barely concealed restraint rather than pain. You know he trusts you, but the two of you have agreed on a system that either party can use if things are getting too wild. Two taps followed by a squeeze on the wrist and everything stops and boundaries are re-established, with no judgement from either participant.
It’s only when Yoongi finally tilts his head back further in an act of true submission that you release his flesh from your teeth, flick a tongue against his pulse point and suckle at it, leaving only the barest hint of a love bite. 
Wanting to see the angry red cock that is sure to be weeping for you, you reach down between your legs and carefully undo Yoongi’s zipper before grasping him tightly in your hand and pulling him out. You can barely hold back the hypothetical stars in your eyes that shine upon seeing your lover’s poorly concealed secret. You’ve never let him live down the fact that he’d basically bared all in that particular set of pink silk pyjamas. Everyone knows Min Yoongi has a big dick. Few know it as well as you do.
You rub the tip of Yoongi’s cock, spreading the evidence of his arousal all around the head of his erection, taking care to stroke the frenulum just the way he likes it. Yoongi whimpers under your actions, already having been pushed to his limit in a short amount of time.
He grips your hips in a wordless plea to stop the pleasurable torture, and you take pity on him, standing up only to swish your skirts into a position where it would hide the depraved act you’re about to commit. 
You grasp Yoongi’s jaw between your forefinger and thumb and force his head upwards, wanting to watch the myriad of emotions that always flicker across his face when you allow him access to the most physically intimate part of you.
He doesn’t disappoint, his expression ranging from relief to unconcealed pleasure that you end up tucking between your breasts, not wanting any possibly hidden security cameras to capture a face that Yoongi lets only you see. Yoongi groans into your chest, while you bury your face in his silvery grey locks.
No matter how many times you fuck Yoongi, you never get used to the way he fits you so perfectly. Your favourite part of sex with him is undoubtedly when your cunt has to stretch to accomodate him, fluttering involuntarily around his cock.
You take a moment to adjust, and Yoongi stays still underneath you, rubbing his thumb in soothing circles on your lower back. He never rushes you, regardless of who is in charge that day, and you’re always grateful to him for it.
When you think you’re able to move, you lean forward, hands resting once more on his shoulders, and give a few experimental bounces that has Yoongi uttering a string of curses into your ear. It seems that Yoongi isn’t in the mood to play full submissive today, however, and in a perfectly timed motion, tilts his pelvis and meets your hips just as you’re coming back down.
You let out a moan loud enough that your eyes widen, wondering if anyone heard. You pull back and give Yoongi an incredulous look akin to the one Seokjin frequently doles out when indignant.
Not one to be outdone, you dig the fingertips of one hand into Yoongi’s shoulder and hold his chin with the other, nails digging into the skin. Without missing a beat, you swoop in and press your lips against his, parting just enough to let your tongue slip through and demand access to Yoongi’s mouth. He lets out a noise somewhere between a whine and a grunt that melts seamlessly into a moan as you wrestle control back from him with a well-timed clench around his cock.
The pads of his fingers dig into the flesh at the bottom of your spine, and you grin, knowing you’ve won. The two of you begin moving in perfect sync, having had plenty of practice and time to get it right.
Soon enough, beads of sweat begin to form on your temple as the temperature in the dressing room climbs higher, courtesy of the sinful actions you and Yoongi are committing under the bright fluorescent lights. 
Sometime between the muffled whimpers and sounds of his thighs slapping against your ass, Yoongi’s hands had found yours, interlacing your fingers together and providing a form of support as you bounced on his cock.
Your legs begin to tire, but you’d never been one to deprive yourself of a good time, and feeling Yoongi stretch you out and fill you in a way only he could was the very definition of time well spent. 
Your breaths start to come in little huffs, each one ending in a mewl as you feel yourself starting to approach your high. 
“Yoongi,” you gasp, squeezing his fingers to get his attention.
He looks up, sweat trickling down the sides of his gorgeous face, a slight flush tingeing his cheeks. 
“You—” your words cut off in a breathy cry as Yoongi’s cock hits a particularly sensitive spot inside you. “You close?”
He nods, breathing heavily. 
Suddenly overcome with an urge to mark him, you grab a fistful of Yoongi’s silver locks that lie flat against the nape of his neck and pull his head back to expose his neck, barely able to bend down to leave a faint bite mark on his jaw.
When his moans get steadily louder, you swoop in for an open mouthed kiss, swallowing all the sounds that leave his throat. You notice the way his hips begin to stutter, a sign that he’s quickly approaching his climax.
Determined not to be left behind, you take a moment to readjust and gyrate your hips so that his thighs grind against your clit, bringing you closer to your high with every move.
The two of you finish nearly at the same time, and you bury your nose in the crook of Yoongi’s neck as your walls spasm uncontrollably around his cock, milking as many drops of his release as they can.
You’re allowed only a few seconds’ rest before the beginning notes of the VCR begin to play, warning you that the boys are on their way back to the dressing room for a costume change.
Meeting Yoongi’s panicked gaze with your own, you stand up quickly, wincing at the way his softening cock slips out from inside you with a wet squelch. The sound itself is enough to make you want to go another round, but this is far from the right time to do so. You ignore the way Yoongi’s cum continues to leak out of your pussy, though you know it’s going to make a mess later on.
Almost immediately after fixing your appearances and settling in a position that you hope looks like it would be comfortable for a napping session, the boys come jogging into the room, sweat matting their hair to their foreheads.
“That set done?” you ask nonchalantly, cracking one eye open. You stifle a yawn, the action bringing tears to your eyes.
“Yeah, we only have a few minutes to change and rehydrate, but it’ll be enough to last us until the last intermission,” Jungkook chirps in between swigs of water. “That one will be a bit longer, thankfully.”
“Hey, does it smell like sweat in here to anyone else?” Hoseok asks. “I know we’re pretty sweaty ourselves, but we’ve only been here for a few seconds. That shouldn’t be—” 
His voice trails off as a thought occurs simultaneously to the rest of the members, and the rest of them let out a collective groan of disgust. “Did you two...?”
“Dunno what you’re talking about, we’ve been napping on and off the whole time. Woke up a few times due to the heat. Maybe we should talk to the staff here about their ventilation?” Yoongi offers lazily.
You hum your agreement sleepily, the post-sex haze beginning to settle in. Thank god your boyfriend still has his wits about him.
The six men trade doubtful looks, not quite buying the excuse, but decide to let it drop for the sake of their sanity. Only when they leave the dressing room for their second last set do you let a small smile take over your lips as you snuggle further into Yoongi’s embrace.
It's not the first time, and it won’t be the last.
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Do not redistribute or plagiarise on any other platforms (including but not limited to wattpad, youtube, instagram, facebook). I only use tumblr and AO3 as of the time of posting. If I find my work plagiarised or redistributed without consent, I will not hesitate to take legal action.
Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed this fic. Please consider reblogging so that others are able to find my work! It gives me a lot of motivation to continue writing. Alternatively, send me an ask and let me know what you thought!
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“Silver Locks [MYG] (18+)” is © copyright @hobisuniverse 2022, all rights reserved.
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kimtaegis · 3 months ago
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big bf energy (cr. namuspromised)
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taejinnies · 4 months ago
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the most precious glazed donut | for @yooboobies
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gyukult · 3 months ago
dissonance (m) || jjk & reader
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title: dissonance pairing: jeon jungkook x reader genre: angst, fluff, smut, rockstar!jungkook, gradstudent!reader wc: 19.4k  summary: something that first seems out of reach becomes a reality for him. screaming adoring fans, billboards with him and his band plastered on it, and touring across the globe with venues sold out. he has everything... but all he's missing is you. warnings: explicit protected sex, vulgar language, sexual innuendos, oral sex (female receiving) -- please let me know if i’m missing anything else! a/n: um. oh my god. how did i plan for like 10.0k and ended up with 19.4k, i’ll never know. hopefully this isn’t boring!! :D i’d also like to thank all the beta readers in @/ficscafe discord, and especially @masterninjacow & @latetaektalk (before the smut ofc... i didn’t even write it until like 1hr ago), @koocycle, @cheolbooluvr, @ddaechwita, and @jayhopely​!! pray i didn’t forget to mention any of the big beta readers because honestly there was a lot LOL. um. enjoy. yeah.
p.s. if there’s errors, i don’t even know if i want you to tell me bc this shit is way too long and makes both my laptop and phone lag FDJKSALFJA LMAO
He loves it here. It’s his dream to be here, on the stage, with the feeling of the music rumbling underneath the soles of his chunky boots, with the sea of fans screaming and hollering out his name, with his self-produced songs booming through the speakers of the venue while his band stands by his side, just as passionate for this as he is.
It’s his dream; he reiterates this constantly as a reminder that this isn’t something everyone gets the chance to breathe the opportunity of. He’s been manifesting this scenario his entire life, wishing and praying to the potential Gods to help make his aspirations become a reality. He’d work his ass off to make ends meet, be able to afford the necessities all while chasing this goal that many claimed to be unrealistic or unattainable. But he’s here right now, supporters that flood the building to the brim for a concert that’s been sold out in thirty cities so far. He has everything he could ever want. Girls, money, music…
But why does he feel like there’s something missing?
Another pair of panties gets thrown at the toes of his boots—it’s probably the sixth one that night but he’s grown used to this already. In some performances, girls would throw themselves at his feet instead of undergarments, yelling at the top of their lungs so ferociously that the security guards had to hold them back in fear of what they were capable of. And sure, if he really wanted to, he could ask them out or invite them back to his hotel room for a quick bang, and it was what he’d been doing for the first couple years, and maybe they’d make him feel a little less like this.
It doesn’t quite hit the same way anymore.
He’s left with this feeling of emptiness when he says his goodbyes and shuts the door behind them; there’s a gap in his chest like he’s forgotten something, yearning for it to be filled but those girls aren’t the ones to do it. His dreams used to be able to—but what are accomplished dreams when you have no one to share them with?
His friends/band mates are great, supportive and understanding, he’s admitted that he’s gotten lucky in that department, but part of him believes that it’s not friendship he’s lacking.
It’s love.
It sounds sappy to the ears of strangers, especially because ideally, you’re not supposed to depend on love to have that stuffed-to-the-brim emotion in your chest, to feel complete and whole because a pretty person fell for you and vice versa. But to Jungkook, being in love had been something he thought he could toss under the rug for another day when he’d given up the girls he'd been infatuated with for this unobtainable aspiration, yet instead, he finds himself back in the same spot years later. Missing a lost sentiment he had to let go to make a dream come true.
He loved the chase—he’s a hopeless romantic kind-of-guy. After all, how would all of his songs be so full of raw emotion? It’s because Jungkook lives it—or well, lived it because everything he knew about love had been left on a shelf to collect dust. He’d deserted the last one back in his hometown. And he’d try to convince himself that he didn’t need someone, but he’s grown… lonely.
And quite frankly, finding someone genuine has proven to be difficult.
Don’t mention Tinder, Jungkook has already tried that. It promptly made headlines the moment he logged into that app with a selfie he’s never used before, and still then people actually thought he was catfishing, and wasn’t the real Jeon Jungkook. He should’ve known. But in all fairness, Jungkook isn’t much of a ‘future thinker’.
Then there was trying to date a staff member—worst idea yet. That noona ended up pissed at him when he realized that this wasn’t what he wanted (he’d learn she was quite the control freak) and she flipped shit to the point that his managers fired her on the spot, then informed the security that she was on the “do not enter” list.
After that, Jungkook just thought maybe he was going about this wrong.
Maybe women weren’t actually of his interest.
Possibly, he was into men.
So, he tried. He ventured out a little, got a little taste here and there. Jungkook even found someone who fit him perfectly. His name? Kim Hyunwoo.
God, Kim Hyunwoo was a very gorgeous man.
Hyunwoo was tall, lean, with black hair that matched the midnight sky. His jawline was sharp without the need of Photoshop, skin so smooth that it felt like butter underneath his fingertips, and had a smile that was so fucking bright, you’d see it from lightyears away. He’s always got that hooded sultry gaze like he’s in the middle of a photoshoot; chin up, sleepy eyes, and slightly parted lips, Jungkook was confused whether his boyfriend was just standing beside him or modelling for the camera. Hyunwoo also had this deep, husky voice that swooned all the girls he’d encountered, the majority practically begging for his phone number, but he was simply into boys. Jungkook thought he was lucky to even be able to snag up a guy like him in the first place. He had a lot of competition, apparently.
It worked out for a little while, Jungkook confesses, because Hyunwoo was overall a great boyfriend. He looked out for Jungkook, treated him well and they shared the same interests.
But… that was the problem.
They got along very well. As if they were best friends.
He found himself getting a bit uncomfortable when things got a little too serious—don’t get him wrong though, he wasn’t embarrassed to be dating a guy. Hyunwoo was the definition of a model with all those sharp facial features. He’d even been stopped and recruited several times during their dates, and truthfully, it made Jungkook feel a little awkward. He was the celebrity here, yet standing beside Hyunwoo only made him feel small.
And in all honesty, he shouldn’t feel this way about the success of his significant other. But it wasn’t even just that. He found himself unable to pass first base with the guy—something about the action itself made him feel… unnerving. But he’s attracted to Hyunwoo. So why can’t he push himself to kiss him?
Jungkook learns that maybe he finds men appealing but he couldn’t have anything more than a friendship with them.
So, he dove head first back into the dating game. Met girls all over during his tour stops; he ran into a foreigner named Lily, a gorgeous girl with pretty blonde hair and pale skin. But they didn’t click. He oddly felt like they weren’t ever on the same page. Then he went to dinner with a gal named—okay. He’d forgotten her name. But the way her dress hugged her ass made his mind go blank, so could he really be blamed? (The answer is yes.) Oh! What about that girl whose name is similar to a hurricane? She had long, dark hair that matched her lengthy lashes and fluttered over her supple cheeks when she sucked his—
Nonetheless, it was a dud, again. He’s still lonely, he sadly confesses, but all of this is too much for him to process. He’s tired of getting his heart broken. He’s exhausted from meeting girls who first claimed that they’re not obsessed then actually are. He’s worn out of the ones who don’t love him for him, but love him for his fame.
Jungkook just wants to be loved for being… Jungkook.
And when he encounters you, some graduate student who spends majority of her days in between the activities of your face dug into a textbook or eyes glued onto a computer screen, he thinks he’s back to where he was before this lifestyle. Jungkook finds himself swooning, desperately wishing for your touch and kisses, but there’s just one thing he doesn’t quite know.
Do you like Jungkook for Jungkook? Or do you like the ideal version of him that sings on stage, tossing off his shirt with his abs flexing while the crowd screams his name once more, all while the veins in his neck pop when he reaches that high note?
Or do you like Jungkook, the one who still doesn’t understand the difference between an orange and clementine, the one who still has trouble knowing when a potato is thoroughly cooked, and why his socks came out of the wash in this weird pinky shade when they definitely went in as white.
So… which is it? Which Jungkook are you interested in?
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Jungkook recalls the first meeting so vividly. People always call their initial brush of contact with the person they have feelings for a “meet-cute” (he learns this from his bandmate Jimin) but truthfully, he’s not sure what to call yours.
For one, you’re a very nice person. But he caught you in a bad situation when he landed his eyes on you for the first time; hair disheveled, frantic movements and heavy breaths, you didn’t seem rather… sane. In fact, he actually thought you were one of those psycho fans, waiting inside of the coffee shop, ready to pounce on him and ask for kisses, an autograph, and a hand in marriage, possibly.
Albeit when he spills his coffee onto you (purely accidental, not that he was scared of you or anything), he truly wasn’t sure how to react.
Well, unexpectedly, you blew.
Like the result of a ticking time bomb.
You yelled at him in the middle of that coffee shop (he’s not sure if he could ever show face there ever again)—veins popping along the side of your neck with a furrow of your brows, mouth constantly moving with sharp words that spat out of it. He was startled, completely baffled as to how you were able to formulate such… creative insults.
It ranged from being called a “dumbass with a head that's so big you’d expect it to at least have some knowledge in it, but really it’s just hollow,” to how he should“ go get prescribed lenses because it seems like you’re fucking blind as shit.” Honestly, there were definitely worse ones but he only revealed those two since his feelings might get hurt if he revisited the others.
Although seeing you now, you’re not that person. It was horrible timing, he learns later on, because you actually have the warmest heart he’s ever encountered. You’re beaming with smiles, radiating nothing but positivity on your routes, and when Jungkook has a rough day, just unlocking his phone to see your daily texts is enough to do it for him.
He’s so embarrassed to admit he’s got a crush on you. This simple, casual girl who knows who he is yet doesn’t treat him less than or better than everyone else just because of his career.
But he still has his doubts.
He worries, oftentimes his thoughts seem to stray away from what they’re supposed to be, constantly overthinking all the possibilities of what may happen if the two of you officially got together. He ponders about the what ifs, like how would you even react when this big time celebrity tells you that he has been harboring these feelings for you for months, or if it turns out this entire time, you’ve been devising a plan to date him for his fame and money.
Or, his imagination could be running wild and you would do neither, other than respond surprisingly to his confession.
Nonetheless, he’s still scared. Jungkook has been on so many dates, “broken” so many hearts because they broke his by holding up a facade, by making him feel like they wanted him. And he’s tired, exhausted like he’s run a marathon without the end in sight, when all he’s done is search for someone to love and to love him.
And when he finally gets to know you, the you that wears those baby blue overalls stained with smears of different shades of primary colors from helping your sister paint her nursery room for her soon-to-be-arriving daughter aka your niece, he learns what it feels like to be in love for another time. “You never know what color she likes,” he recalls you saying over a Facetime call, waving around a brush with the ends drenched in a canary yellow, but your pillowy cheeks have marks of blue on them. “Or they. He. Whatever that kid wants to go by later on. So instead, I’m painting her a portrait.”
“I didn’t know you were a painter,” he retorted, but you shrugged as you propped the phone onto a tin-plated steel paint can. “I thought you said you were going to school to become a scientist.”
“Scientists are allowed to have hobbies, Jeon Jungkook.”
Jungkook remembers a laugh effortlessly slipping from his lips, something you’re able to spill out of him with ease, and it’s partially the reason why he sticks by you so often. After he offered to pay for dinner to make up for the coffee spill (which you gladly took simply because you’re a poor grad student), he met with you yet again, but this time, you’re more welcoming when you’re in a better mood (you tell him “obviously” when he mentions this in the future), and that warm smile stretching from cheek to cheek is enough to lure him into the idea of love once more.
“What’s up with you?” Jimin queries, snapping Jungkook out of his trance.
He doesn’t realize it, but he’s lost in his thoughts as usual. On the leather loveseat in the living room of the shared condo he lives in with his bandmates, he huffs out a heavy breath, head thrown back. “I’m just…”
“Thinkin’ ‘bout that girl again?” he asks, but this time with a drink in his hand from the fridge. He pops the can open, a sizzle of the soda hissing through the opening as he brings it up to his lips. “Why don’t you just fucking date her if you’re so into her? I mean, yeah, she ain’t exactly your type, but you’re fucking Jeon Jungkook for god’s sake. She’s gonna wanna date you.”
Jungkook rolls his eyes. “That’s not the point, Jimin.”
“Then what is?” Jimin shoots back, raising a brow questioningly. “You could get any girl, including her. What's going on with you?”
Jungkook doesn’t like to talk about these things with his members. It’s nothing personal—they just have different perspectives when it comes to things like these. They love the idea of temporary; girls coming and going, barely even staying within the late hours. By the time they’re stumbling out of their apartment, they’re struggling to slide back into the heels they wore for the night out when the sun hasn’t even risen yet. His friends love that, they favor the fact that the girls they encounter never come with any baggage because they never stay long enough for them to unload it.
They’re not hopeless romantics like Jungkook—it’s why they’re never the ones to dip into the lyrics of the song, it’s only him writing it. They don’t have the passion for love like he does. When they see the sunrise, they think of the walk-of-shame, staggering out of the homes of the women they slept with after a show, but when Jungkook sees the sunrise, he thinks of the way your hair blows in the direction of the wind when you’re snuggling into the scarf that wraps around your neck. How your nose twitches at the feeling of the brisk air smacking against your skin, shoulders raising before bouncing to regain the warmth in your coat. He’s reminded of the way your fingers tap against the paper cup with steam coming out of the opening, waving him off about how you have class in a couple minutes and you don’t have time to hear his story about the performance he had just a couple hours before.
“Ugh,” he groans, hopping up from his seat. “Listen, I don’t wanna talk about it. We’re just friends, alright? Nothing more.”
Jimin has his arms out, clicking his tongue irritably. “Aye, come on. You’re not actually upset because I said that, are you? Seriously though. You wanna get in her pants, it’s easy, you just—”
“I don’t wanna just get in her pants, Jimin, I wanna date her.”
“Alright, well, that shouldn’t be a problem either.”
Jungkook scoffs. “You don’t get it, do you?” His bandmate only furrows his brows in confusion as a response. “I want her to date me because she likes me for me, not because I’m some celebrity in a famous band.”
Jimin sighs, placing his drink onto the counter. He has his hands on his hips, tongue poking the inside of his cheek. “Then why won’t you talk to her instead of moping around like some sad puppy all day in our apartment? You realize that negativity is contagious, right?” Jimin shakes his head. “We care about you, okay? And we want you to be happy. I’ll never understand what you want right now because I’m not looking for a serious relationship. But I’ll help you if you need me to.” Help with what? Thanks for nothing.
Annoyed, he grabs his jacket from the coat rack, slinging it over his shoulders and sliding his arms into the sleeves. He needs air, needs space from the guys, because although he loves them dearly, he feels like the odd one out these days.
The first person he could think of contacting is you, and of course it is because all this revolves around you. Then again, you’re on shift tonight. But at the same time, you have to welcome customers, don’t you?
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Or so, he thought.
If your stare had lasers, he’d be melting right now.
“What are you even doing here?” you hiss as Jungkook grins cheekily while adjusting the black baseball cap on his head. Did he really think he could hide his identity behind a flimsy jacket and some old ass hat? How stupid was he? “And why are you dressed like that?”
“It’s a disguise.”
“And that’s the best you could do? Come on, Jeon. You could do better than that. I thought you had a high IQ.”
“I never said that.”
“Are you sure?”
“I may have mentioned it once.”
“Well, once more than I have ever spoken about my IQ.”
He can’t help but let out a breathy laugh, crossing his arms over his chest. “I’m a rockstar now, I think a high IQ is the least of my worries. Plus, no one suspects a thing. I just look like some guy coming to grab a cup of coffee.”
“At 11:32 pm.” You quirk a brow. “You look more like a creeper than ‘some guy,’ Jeon.”
“It’s a 24-hour cafe,” he attempts to justify, and you only roll your eyes.
There’s something about you that’s so simple, yet at the same time makes you even more beautiful than usual. Is it the way your hair is messily tied in a low bun with flyaways that cover your face? Or is it how cutely you scrunch up your nose when your hair brushes over it, shaking your head to get it out of your field of vision? Maybe it’s how the space between your brows crinkle in concentration when you’re tapping orders into the iPad register, trying your best to accommodate to the system that seems to update every couple weeks with a new layout.
Jungkook leans over the counter, some funky latte you whipped up from the specials menu in his hand. “I was feeling a bit… off today. Wanted to see you.”
“Mhm,” you hum, wiping down the caps of the syrups that line the shelves. “Not sure what I could provide for you Jeon. But what’s up with you?”
He chews on his bottom lip anxiously. Is today the day? The day he finally professes his true feelings for you?
Jungkook tests the waters. “I, uh, got into a little argument with Jimin.”
You click your tongue, the same way Jimin did earlier in the apartment. “Why do you keep fighting with my favorite member of your band?”
“I thought I was the favorite.”
“Have you seen his ass?”
Jungkook tilts his head. “You’re not even sure what my band members look like, do you?”
Nose scrunching up, you do an arm swing, feigning disappointment from being caught in your lies. “Oh, darn. How’d you figure that out?”
He lets out a hearty laugh from his chest, warm and full of elation like he always does when he’s with you. For a moment, he doesn’t remember his fame, he forgets the crazy fans, the surfeit of stages he performs on—he just lives in the simplicity of this moment, the calmness before every storm of his shows, and gets to bask in the normal things about life. How the front of your brows dip when you’re using the little ounce cup to measure how much of those weird, sticky, fruity syrups to add into the drinks the customers’ order is probably his most favorite moment to swim in. He loves that you’re able to make him feel alive in this way, a different kind of alive in comparison to when his feet are on the stage of a venue, mic stand in hand while he sings his heart out because instead, he’s got his heart in the palm of his own hands, reaching it out to you.
“Seriously though, maybe you should get along with your boys,” you state firmly, wiping down the counters in unison. “They’re not just your bandmates or your roommates. They’re your best friends; you guys have come a long way from where you started. Don’t turn your backs on them just because you’re slightly annoyed.”
He sighs, rubbing the round of his cap discontentedly. Jungkook knows where you’re coming from, but he hasn’t exactly been entirely honest with you when it comes to why he got upset with the guys because well… it’ll expose this stupid little crush he has on you. “I know that. They just… they just don’t get me sometimes, you know?”
“That’s no excuse,” you quip, tossing the rag into the sink. “You sit down and talk like grown adults. Communicate. Converse until it gets through all of your heads. Don’t fight.”
Jungkook smiles. Again. He’s so infatuated that he knows he’s far gone now when it has to do with you. “The guys would love you.”
“Yeah, but I wouldn’t love them.”
With a chuckle, he adjusts himself by leaning against the counter. “I know. You’ve got that thing where you hate irresponsible people. They drink, party, get involved with girls then break their hearts—they’re not exactly the kind of personalities you love to associate yourself with. But forgetting all of that, as friends, they’re great people, and I think you guys would get along.”
“We have different morals.”
“They’re just people, they’re allowed to enjoy themselves.”
“So why do you get upset when they have one-night stands?”
Frozen, Jungkook remains in the spot he’s in, almost like his feet are rooted into the broken tiles of the coffee shop. How did you even figure that out? Was he that obvious? He didn’t think he was, especially since he’s been manually trying his best to control what he says when it has to do with the topic of dating. “I… I don’t get upset.”
You roll your eyes. “Oh, come on, Jeon. I hear the way you talk about them. Your voice raises a couple of decibels, your ears get all red, and your jaw clenches. Trust me, I notice. And it’s fine that you get upset, but that doesn’t mean that it’s just them that don’t understand you, but vice versa.”
Were you actually siding with guys you’ve never even met, let alone googled?
“Are you really taking their stance on this?”
“I mean, you can’t possibly think you’re perfect, right?”
His jaw tightens and ears grow heated. He takes a deep breath for a moment before speaking; Jungkook doesn’t get mad at you, at least, not really, but today is slightly different from your other encounters because he came to you to ditch those guys, only for you to bring up the same exact thing? Not the right time.
“It’s not that I think that I’m perfect—”
“So why can’t you try putting yourself into their shoes and see how they’re feeling? They’re also trying to understand you. I mean—you don’t have to tell me that you’re not perfect. You’re a rockstar, but that doesn’t mean you’re smart enough to decide that wearing all black in a public setting isn’t a good idea because I’ve already heard three separate side conversations of girls asking if it ‘really is Jeon Jungkook underneath that black dad hat with a prada logo’—”
Jungkook cowers. “What?”
You sigh. “You should go.”
“I wanted to see you.”
“Yeah, well, I wanna see the Jonas Brothers perform but I’m in grad school, a broke ass bitch, and using every free minute I have to work at this goddamn fucking café.” Then you’re giving him that ‘that sucks’ look he’s all too familiar with. “You can see me when I’m studying at the library. Nobody who listens to heavy rock music studies there on a Sunday afternoon.”
“It’s not—”
You wave your hand dismissively at him. “Yeah, yeah, just go.”
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This is the twelfth time Jungkook has invited you to a concert of his.
And it’s the twelfth time you don’t come.
It’s not like you give him empty promises either; you make it abundantly clear that the chances of you ever going is slimmer than 0.4%. How do you come up with that particular number? He’s not exactly sure, but he accepts the small percentage with a little glimmer of hope, nonetheless.
“Tae, I need you to help me with my guitar amp.”
“Isn’t that what the staff is for?” Yoongi narrows his eyes at his bandmate and Taehyung immediately places down his Starbucks mocha frappuccino on the stool before rushing over to help him.
Jungkook wishes you were here. This was quite literally the ‘calm before the storm,’ and seeing your pretty face and soothing voice would give him the encouragement to perform on stage, but he knows you’re not the type to come see a band that you’re not interested in.
He sort of hopes you were interested in him, but he digresses.
“Where’s your girlfriend?” Namjoon asks, helping tune one of the electric guitars as he sits comfortably on one of the amps. “I thought you guys were good. Why doesn’t she come?”
“She’s not his girlfriend,” Jimin chimes in, walking on stage. He’s got his earpiece hung over the curve of his ear, and adjusting the mic stand to his height afterwards. “Apparently, Jungkook is a bit hesitant about asking her out.”
Taehyung jolts his head at the younger male. “Why the fuck you scared for? You’re the lead singer of a rock band. You’re fucking racking with money, pussy is literally lining outside your fucking door, and you’ve probably got a big dick—”
“Whoa whoa whoa,” Yoongi calls out, furrowing his brows at the kid, “don’t be talking about Jungkook’s dick like that, what the fuck?”
Jimin looks at Yoongi with a confused expression. “Have you seen his fucking dong?”
“Alright,” Namjoon gets up from his seat, propping the guitar back on its stand. “Let’s… How about we not talk about our friend’s genitals, and try helping him with his girl problem instead?”
Immediately, Jungkook waves his hands in dismissal. “No, it’s fine, seriously—“
Namjoon raises his palm up to halt the younger male. “Come on. We may have different perspectives in life, but tell us seriously how you’re feeling and we’ll figure it out together.”
“I just,” he sighs, running his fingers through his already disheveled hair. “I wanna ask her out, but I don’t know if I wanna do this because… she’s great but—“
“You think she’s only into the idea that you’re a celebrity,” Yoongi interjects, nodding his head as if he’s seen it before. “I used to date this girl—I’ve never introduced you guys to her before,” he’s got a finger put down with every word that describes her, “Beautiful. Tall. Sweet. Kind. But she loved that we were up and coming at the time, that we were getting famous so quickly and she loved that lifestyle. Wanted me to bring her as a date to every party. But I was so infatuated, my stupid ass didn’t see it. It wasn’t until that first record deal fell through that she also fell through.”
Jungkook puffs his cheeks. “Then what do you suggest I do?”
“Well, you’ll never know her unless you actually date her.”
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Jungkook’s hands are abnormally perspiring way too much. He can’t believe that a girl, not even his first time performing on stage for thousands of people, causes him to feel this nervous. Shaking his shoulders in his bomber jacket, he takes in a deep breath before opening the doors of the library.
2nd flr, your text reads, and Jungkook recalls that you preferred this level since you were still allowed to talk here but in a low volume. You weren’t a big fan of dead silent places, and ever since you found this spot, it’s been your go-to. He’s already rushing up the steel staircases of the building the moment you confirm there’s a spot for him to sit in. It’s not his first time and he’s not even a student here, yet he’s probably been here more frequently than those who were enrolled. He comes to see you, not even to study or anything else. In reality, he finds himself scrolling through social media on his phone or even borrowing your laptop as your face is dug deep into the depths of the pages of your textbook, only to do the same exact thing he was doing on his own mobile device.
When he pushes through another set of double doors, he lets out a sigh of relief. There isn’t one specific reason why he feels this way, but there’s just something about you that releases the burden that sits atop of his shoulders.
“Hey,” Jungkook calls out softly, and your head perks up at the sudden movement of the chair in front of you. Pulling out an AirPod from one of your ears, your sunken eyes meet up with his. “What are you studying for?”
In your oversized charcoal hoodie (the one you got from Artizia that one time; something about how expensive it was but the moment your arms and head slides through the holes, you were already one with the hoodie), you’ve got your hair tied up in a loose, messy bun, stray strands cascading over your face. He takes note that you’ve been breaking out lately; a pimple on your cheek, nose, and chin, black circles darkening underneath those pretty eyes, and you’ve been putting in less effort to apply makeup on in the mornings.
Yet, you still look effortlessly gorgeous.
“What?” you say, half of the energy you normally exhibit.
Jungkook has a soft smile tugging on the edges of his mouth. You’re cute. “I asked what you were studying for.”
“Some specific law class. If I got into the details, you wouldn’t get it.”
He chuckles quietly. “Good call on stopping yourself from explaining.” Slipping the backpack off his shoulders, he unzips it before pulling out a sandwich he bought from the store.
Your face abruptly is three shades brighter.
“Is… is that for me?”
“No,” he retorts bluntly with a straight face until it breaks with a grin. “… Yes. Of course. I even got you chicken salad as the protein.”
You gasp. “Chicken salad? You went all out, Jeon Jungkook. What are you having?”
“Nah, I’m on a diet. I got a performance on Friday night and I’m supposed to showcase my abs.”
Your nose scrunches up, hands reaching out with a grabby-grabby motion. “Gimme gimme. And—do you have to show your abs? I mean, they come for your music, right?”
Jungkook narrows his gaze at you. “Come on, you can’t possibly think that they’re all here for the music. I’ve seen some of them that come backstage with VIP passes. It was like they paid for it to test their chances of fucking me or something ‘cause they didn’t even know the titles of some of the songs.”
Midway reaching your first bite of your sandwich, you cringe again.
“Which… actually is sorta something I wanted to talk to you about.”
Cheeks stuffed with the carbs, his heart is full with love at the sight. You’re so cute like this, eyes widened, smears of the mayo on the side of your lips, and your mouth is filled to the brim with the sandwich that he can see a bit of it protruding out.
“What?” He swears he saw you spit something out of your mouth but he ignores it.
“I… have a confession to make.”
How you swallow that huge ass bite so quickly, he’ll never know, but you wipe your mouth with a napkin, the fronts of your brows dipping at his abrupt statement.
Jungkook inhales a deep breath before releasing it while you eye him curiously. “I… like you.”
You snort.
It’s not the reaction he was looking for—or, well, he wasn’t sure what he was expecting, but it definitely wasn’t this. “What?”
“Well, I don’t see why you’re making it into a big deal. We’re friends, aren’t we? I know you like me. Otherwise we wouldn’t be friends.”
His face contorts in confusion. “No, I meant like… I like you. More than a friend. Boyfriend and girlfriend kind of deal.”
You place your sandwich down gingerly.
“Do you… not like me in return?”
Shoulders dropped, your lips curve into a frown. He doesn’t want to be the type of guy who says you look beautiful even when you’re upset, but… you’re beautiful when you’re upset. “Don’t worry, I like you. You’re charming and handsome, smart at times and dumb at others, but there’s still things I learn from you. Of course, it’s sort of hard not to like you.”
Jungkook beams.
“But,” his face drops; nothing good comes out after the word ‘but’. “I wouldn’t necessarily be interested in dating you.”
He freezes; he’s more frozen than when Captain America is found in that block of ice. “Wh… Why?”
“Because you’re a rockstar.”
You roll your eyes. “Jungkook, we both have vastly different priorities.”
Bewildered by your response, Jungkook adjusts himself in the wooden chair, the ones you complain about that make your ass hurt when you sit on them for too long, and clears his throat. “I mean, everyone has different priorities. I don’t see what you’re getting at.”
Fiddling with a piece of the bread, your eyes don’t even meet with his. “Jungkook, you seem to forget that you’re this big rockstar. You have billions of adoring fans, you travel frequently, you drink and get blackout wasted with your band mates, and well… I don’t know how else to describe your lifestyle other than that you’re living the dream. I’m just a grad student. I’m trying to finish school, get a job, one day get married and have kids. If we ever dated, we’d be casual. You’re like an undergrad fling, not a graduate school one.”
Baffled, his mouth is agape. Were you really labeling him as a fling despite the fact that the two of you haven’t even dated yet?
“You… okay, let me get this right. You don’t want to date me because I’m a rockstar?”
Leaning back in his seat, he pulls his baseball cap off his head and tosses it on the table before running his fingers through his disheveled tangled locks. “Wh… I’ve never been in this situation.”
You’re already reaching for your sandwich again as if you didn’t just tore his heart to shreds. “Um. I’m sorry. I think we’d make great friends though.”
“You know, girls would kill to date me because I’m a celebrity.”
There’s an empty look washing over your face. “Correct. Which all the more makes me not want us to date.”
“Because what?” he snaps, exasperated.
“Because,” you reiterate, continuing along, “I’d have so many people to compete with. What makes you think I wouldn’t be sitting in the middle of my apartment on days you’re on tour elsewhere, or pacing around my living room, distressed because I have no idea what my boyfriend is up to? Or if he has better options lining up, waiting to get his attention and be his when I’m supposed to be the only one?”
“Because,” he’s mocking you now, “you’d be my girlfriend. The only one that’s on my mind.”
You scoff. “Not the only one in your eyesight that’s half naked though.”
He groans frustratedly, rubbing his face into his hands. “I’ve never had to convince someone to date me before.”
“Jungkook, it’s fine. I think you’re great with an amazing personality. But we’re just not meant to be because I can’t understand your stardom life. That’s all. Maybe in another lifetime.”
“I don’t have control over those girls that strip in front of me or throw their undergarments on stage.”
“I never said it was your fault.”
He sucks in his cheeks, pondering on how to proceed next. Jungkook didn’t prepare for this—he thought he’d either get friendzoned or you’d run into his arms eagerly, excited to be finally his. And somehow, it’s… neither?
Jungkook never knew his job could get in the way of getting his dream girl.
He stays silent, absorbing all of this information. So you did like him back, you just didn’t want to get involved with a rockstar. It makes sense though, and he completely understands where you’re coming from because his bandmates live that same exact lifestyle that you claim is stereotypical celebrity behavior. But he wanted to prove to you that he wasn’t like that, that he saw life a whole lot differently than those guys, and if anything he is solely dedicating himself to you and no other girl if it meant that you’d be his girlfriend.
“How… how do I convince you otherwise?”
This intrigues you. There’s a twitch in your brow, like your face is going to warp into a different countenance, but you’re resuming eating your sandwich again to stall a response.
“Maybe… if you come to my shows, go on a couple dates with me, and hang out with my friends, you’d… get a better glimpse of what that side of me is really like. It’s not like you don’t have feelings for me, right? So this is just… just a trial run. And if it really doesn’t work out, I’ll drop it and we can continue being friends again. I won’t probe you.”
Finishing your last bite, you brush your hands off of the crumbs on the side. He remembers the first time you did that; the remnants of your poptart that spilled onto the table while you were studying were whisked off and onto the floor and when he made a comment about how unsanitary it was, your rebuttal was, ‘if I’m paying this much for University, I’m going to make a mess.’ It’s one of the reasons he fell for you—not that weird thing with the crumbs you did though, he still doesn’t support it, but it’s how bold and honest you were, and he hadn’t met anyone like that.
Finger in your mouth to get the remains of the sandwich off the side of your teeth, you wipe your hand off on the napkin and suck in your cheeks. He cringes, and he knows you’re doing this purposely to throw him off because of his proposal.
“Fine?” He didn’t think it was going to be that easy.
“Fine,” you reiterate once more, leaning back in your seat. “But if I still feel the same way, I’m moving on and you can’t keep pursuing. I’m giving this a shot in case one day, I look back and regret that I didn’t at least give it a try.”
Jungkook’s cheering inside.
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The queue outside wraps around the venue and continues down the street, past a Starbucks, a post office, and some creepy gas station with a couple lights flickering, in need of a replacement. The sight of the amount of people that are waiting just to see Jungkook’s band perform is astonishing, leaving your mouth agape because truthfully, you’ve never truly thought about how famous he was. All you knew was that if you Googled his name, an actual Wikipedia page would show up.
Maybe that should’ve been the first sign that he’s actually a celebrity.
It feels wrong when you passed the people in the line, like you’re cutting them off or something, but this Staff pass that Jungkook gives you lets you slide in both the front and backdoors with ease, and allows way more accessibility than some nutty ass VIP pass that fans have to sell an organ for. So, pulling your jacket closer to your frame, you crouch your head down as much as possible to avoid any attention before flashing that plastic rectangular card with the words ‘STAFF’ printed in bold and caps, and the security guard steps aside without any words coming out of his mouth.
The first thing you could think of the moment you stepped backstage was that it’s… a tad bit hectic.
People are hustling and bustling, all occupied with tasks to tend to, earpieces plugged in and you take note of a couple of the workers with clipboards that are hollering out orders to the rest. It’s chaotic as hell, and you feel like you’re sticking out like a sore thumb just trying to weave through the crowds that are just trying to do their job when you’re here to see Jungkook.
You hate these kinds of places.
They’re so packed and filled with sweaty humans, wet and thirsty for these stupid boys at the same time, and you couldn’t be bothered to even be there. Although being backstage is quite the opposite, instead of those crazy fans, it’s frantic employees that are preparing the stage for Jungkook’s band to perform for those said weirdos on the other side of the curtain.
You [6:45PM]: where are you?
Jeon [6:45PM]: hold on, i’ll come out and get you!
He’s so easy to spot in a crowd full of people.
You ‘stick out like a sore thumb’ because you’re not working like the rest of them.
Jungkook, however, ‘sticks out like a sore thumb’ simply because of his looks.
You meant it when you said that it’s not him that makes you hesitant about pursuing a relationship, it’s his choice of career. He’s always got that pretty smile planted on his face, never failing to turn the heads of many, with charms that emit off him with simplicity, and when he says something even remotely flirtatious, your heart skips a beat. But your stance remains—Jungkook is a celebrity, and you’re not ready for that kind of burden.
Gesturing you to follow him, you don’t hesitate to trail after him in his leather tight pants that hug him in places you never thought your eyes would linger. Were his thighs always that big? You had to quickly shake your head from getting any weird ideas. This is Jeon Jungkook you’re thinking about here, a rocker, a musician, a guy with crazy adoring fans. You would and could never be more. It just didn’t make sense for it to.
When you say there’s a fucking shit ton of people backstage, there’s no exaggeration.
It slowly becomes harder to pinpoint Jungkook in the midst of the employees weaving through the crowds, and the mop on Jungkook’s head barely makes him accessible to find. Yet, he seems to figure this out when you’re not in close proximity—so he waits. He waits until you’re close, then in that moment, his hand reaches for yours and clasps them together.
You’ve never touched Jungkook or been this close in that manner, because when he tugs you closer, you get a whiff of his cologne that practically intoxicates you and has your knees buckling at the aroma. It’s a mixture of citrus with a light spice, some vanilla, and patchouli—then when Jungkook turns to confirm that you’re still there, a smile tugs on the corners of his mouth that tightens your chest even more.
Wait. Snap the fuck back into reality.
Jungkook is a fantasy, one you couldn’t afford to mesh into with your reality. He’s the type of guy that the moment you get involved with, he’ll steer you off your life course and you don’t want that. You worked too hard for your career, for your education, and someone like him could ruin your dreams in a heartbeat because of that gorgeous smile.
He’s like a bad boy meets a sweet boy into one. Tattoos decorate his biceps to his forearms, down to his hands and fingers. He’s got a piercing underneath his tongue, more jewels that adorn the curve of his ears, and he even has an eyebrow one. You never confess to Jungkook that you’ve watched his performances on Youtube before, but you definitely saw it. There’s no dodging those recommended videos on the home screen of the website, so you have been tempted to tap one of them (especially when the thumbnail is of him with those RayBans and that tight shirt).
He flexes his arms like he’s gotta use this strength for something, but it’s all for visuals. Sticking his tongue out his mouth, he uses it to outline his plump lips, moistening them as it glistens underneath the stage lights, then points directly at the camera, stares at it dead eye in the center before wetting girls’ panties just from a simple wink.
But when he’s offstage, he’s got this warmth that radiates off him, kind of like that cute reaction you see in Animal Crossing where flowers emerge with that sparkling sound effect, supposedly expressing joy.
Jungkook laughs with his whole face scrunched up, deep and thick like honey when he’s playing it cool, but higher-pitched and bright when it’s genuinely funny. He does that thing where his hand just stays in the air sometimes, and you’re not sure if he’s going to hit your arm or put it down, but it’s part of his cute laughing habits that you’ll never understand.
It’s hard to tell him ‘no’ after his confession when he’s like this, gleaming with elation when he sees you, but the truth still stands. Jungkook isn’t the guy for you.
When he introduces you to his bandmates, who lounge around in the room with what looks like there isn’t an ounce of nerves in their system, the sound of your name also seems familiar to their ears.
Then Taehyung sports a cocky grin, extending his hand out for you to shake, and the words that leave his mouth only support your observation. “Finally, we get to meet you. Jungkook doesn’t shut up about you.”
Heat rises up to Jungkook’s cheeks. “Alright, enough of that,” he says, glaring at the older male. “Either way, these are my boys.”
His “boys” are what you expect, based on Jungkook’s description of them. Namjoon, the leader, is poised with eyes that curve to moon crescents, mirroring the way his lips curl. He’s gone bleach blonde, you recall Jungkook mentioned, but he wears a beanie that hides it, however the little baby strands that peek through expose him. He’s supposedly mature despite not being the oldest, and always brings order to the chaos.
Then there’s Yoongi, the quiet one with a hardened expression. He’s nice, you learn eventually after having a couple conversations with him, he just has a stiff facade you have to break into. You finally have names to the faces: Seokjin, oldest and loudest, Taehyung, the ‘artsy’ one who dresses accordingly what the current trend is, Hoseok, the cheesy ball of goo who seemingly is always beaming whenever he goes, and lastly Jimin, the big womanizer whose whole personality revolves around having an active sex life.
“You’re pretty,” Jimin compliments, but his tone exhibits a ‘stating-the-obvious’ vibe. “I see why Jungkook is so caught up on you.”
Taehyung snickers.
With a groan, Jungkook shoves Jimin out the way. “Stop,” he whines, “the point is to not scare her away, and you guys are doing just that.”
Namjoon lets out a laugh, and the way he gets up from the armrest of the couch to open the mini fridge to snatch a water bottle for you is comforting. He doesn’t poke fun like Taehyung and Jimin, in fact, he does the opposite. He hands the chilled bottle to you, and the way his eyes match that soft smile dressed upon his lips pulls you in. “Don’t mind them. It’s nice to put a face to a name. We’re happy to have you here, it’s great to finally meet a friend of Jungkook’s.”
“Water?” Seokjin calls out from the corner of the room, finally detaching his eyes from the screen of his phone. “Get her a beer or somethin’. You’re here for a concert, not for an interview. Go grab her that Budlight from the fridge, Joon.”
Namjoon rolls his eyes. “Would you like a beer?”
Seokjin makes a point. If you’re going to at least enjoy yourself (and maybe release some nerves while you’re at it), you should grab yourself a drink.
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A drink is an understatement.
You end up having more than just the two cans of beer in their dressing room—you somehow resulted in drinking a couple glasses of mojitos (your favorite), and enjoyed some appetizers leisurely, despite the crowds of people. And it’s all because of that sparkly VIP pass Jungkook gives you.
There’s a box, slightly higher than the rest of the mass of people, but not taller than the stage. It’s got these bars that perimeter the area, seats that are spaced out from each other, including tables so you can put your fancy drinks on. Jungkook mentions that they have this at all of his concerts, and that usually the wealthier fans tend to put in extra money for the comfort during the show, rather than being in that horde with skin on skin contact with strangers who are without a doubt sweating in this hot venue.
Maybe it’s the alcohol in your bloodstream, or is it your heart talking but Jungkook is… different on stage.
When your friends tell you about their concert experiences, you rarely ever truly understand what they mean. There’s a difference between listening to an artist’s song on Spotify or Apple Music, and hearing them onstage, feeling the vibration from the speakers that surround the venue, and that inebriated trance it puts you in. Body swaying to the music, eyes closed to heighten your senses; the thud underneath the soles of your shoes, the heat radiating off your skin—you lose control of yourself and just vibe with the songs that blare into your ears.
It’s also helpful that you have some rum in your system.
Jungkook and his band make this new adventure worthwhile. There’s no separation between the fans and the performers—they’re so interactive during their concerts, constantly getting the audience to sing along while holding their mic out, even tossing water bottles and sweaty towels in their direction, and winking or pointing to random girls to get them swooning.
And honestly?
That wink from Jungkook may have stirred something inside.
After the concert, a handful of screaming fans come running to his side the second he’s hopped off the stage. His intention was to run to you, give you that sweaty hug that you were oddly longing for, but instead, he’s already wrapped an arm around a crazed fan for a picture.
And suddenly, reality smacks your face like the winter’s brisk wind.
Being here was great in a sense that temporarily, you were able to forget. It was easy to bury all the concerns you had when it came to possibly dating Jungkook, but reality comes crashing like a storm, and you’re back to where you started. You could never date someone like him—the inconsistent schedules, the constant traveling, the careless environment, and the mounds of girls that chase him incessantly were all negatives. You’ll never know what he’s really doing, and wholeheartedly, you’re not sure how long you could do the semi-long distance kind of relationship either.
But Jungkook just wants to try so hard, and it’s making it difficult to tell him ‘no.’ It’s those pretty irises that sparkle with joy every time he sees you, long lashes fluttering over the smoothness of his cheeks, and those pouty lips that have you choking on the words you logically want to say, but the words from your heart spills instead.
So, you decide to run.
Well, not so much run, but ghost him, as the kids say.
When he approaches you after your class several weeks later—in a crowd of people, you note—your heart stops at the sudden intrusion. He's not supposed to be here. It’s too public for him to be here, dangerous too, because he’s without his security team and with his fame increasing, you fear for his safety. Immediately, you have fistfuls of the fabric of his black hoodie to pull him aside, letting his back face the students who move quickly in between classes to block his face and you sigh with relief.
“What the fuck? Why would you come here? Do you see all the kids here? What if they just start fucking bombarding you? What are you going to do?” Exasperated, you let your weight fall against the brick masonry so you could catch your breath from the anxiety with the release of his hoodie from your hands.
“You haven’t been calling me back. Or texting me,” there’s hurt in his eyes, permeating to the point of no denying. “What’s wrong?”
“Nothing is wrong,” you reply shortly, pushing the straps of your backpack closer. “Just busy.”
He furrows his brows. “You told me a couple weeks ago that this is the only week you’re free in the semester. It’s Tuesday, you have one class and you haven’t even texted me back. Are you busy? Or are you avoiding me?”
“I’m just—”
Jungkook doesn’t even let you get a word in. “Because if it’s because I confessed to you, I’m sorry. I fucked up, alright? I thought you’d like me back, and maybe we could date—well, honestly, I didn’t know what would happen but I didn’t think it would be this. I didn’t want to lose my friend over it. Why couldn’t you just say you didn’t have feelings back so I wouldn’t just sit by my phone waiting—”
He doesn’t stop, even when your mouth drops open to interject, he doesn’t allow it. Quickly placing a hand to cover his mouth, he muffles a couple words into your palm before tilting his head puzzlingly. “I never said I didn’t like you.”
Jungkook pulls your hand off and you drop the hold with ease. “Then… what was it?”
“If I saw you again, it’d be hard to tell you that we can’t be together,” you solemnly disclose. “And I’m usually the type to control my emotions very well, but it’s confusing being around you.”
His expression softens. “Confusing?”
Shrugging your shoulders, you cross your arms over your chest. It’s a simple act, but part of you always feels like you need a shield to protect yourself around Jungkook because if it’s anyone to break your heart, he’d facilely do it. “You’re a great guy. I love talking to you, and hanging out with you is the highlight of my week. But I never know if you’re going to be out with someone, or if you’re going to be away next week for a concert or for some show appearance. What am I supposed to do when all those things are eating me up inside? We’re not even dating and I have all this anxiety.”
Strangely enough, in his past relationships, he’s never had anyone say those words. It has him wondering if they’ve ever felt this insecurity with him, and when he asked them for a break up, he wonders if they ever felt like they might’ve been right about their theory (even though it wasn’t).
But he didn’t want you to feel that way. He wanted you, without all of those burdens that he would be the cause of.
“You… haven’t even let me try yet. It was one concert. I didn’t even get to show you what kind of boyfriend I could be, the kind of man that could show you what it’s like to be loved.”
And there it was again.
Those gorgeous eyes; how are they brown yet manage to shine brighter than the stars in the sky? They’re hypnotizing when they meet with yours, having you locked in with the key thrown away and you’re left with saying with your heart feels instead of your head for the second time.
With a quiet voice, you say it once more. “Okay.”
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Jungkook does try his best when he says he does. He’s a hopeless romantic, you learn, but it’s something he reveals continually and yet you never took seriously until now.
He often comes by after your classes with a cup of coffee, or drops by the library when he knows you have to stay late to do some research for your papers. Jungkook even takes you out on dates at times; once on a picnic, another at some fancy steak restaurant with the lights so dim that you couldn’t even make out the shadow of his face if it wasn’t for the little ass candle in the middle of the table, and sometimes, you’d go on walks in the park or alongside the river. He doesn’t fail to whisper sweet nothings to you from time to time, always reminding you how you’re the one that has his heart stuttering in its beats.
Jungkook sort of makes you feel like you’re dating a… regular guy. (And in a good way).
He even makes visits to your apartment, cooks dinner with you and stays the night. Some days, he has band practice or recordings, so you enjoy the leftovers from the night before, and although it feels empty not to have him in that seat across from you at the dinner table, his presence is faintly there—especially when he’s texting you in between breaks or Facetimes you when he can.
It feels… nice. Being loved like this, so effortlessly, like a soothing cool breeze on those nights in the summertime. There’s no weight on your shoulders, instead, you feel like you’re floating in the air when you’re with him—problems set aside, nothing but calmness instilled, and it’s just the two of you.
When he plants kisses from the corner of your lips down to the side of your neck, your breath hitches at the feeling. He’s so close, and you’re desperate to feel closer, but you don’t want to be another number on his list of women and yet here you were, melting underneath his touches.
You don’t say anything, but the fewer words spoken, the better because Jungkook comes back up once again, abandoning the end of the path of kisses he leaves to press his lips against the crown of your head with a hand cupping the other side of your face. He knows when to stop, understanding that there’s that insecurity that sits in the pit of your stomach, worrying about his past relationships, even though you know you shouldn’t be. So if this is how far you’re comfortable with, Jungkook complies.
The nights that he spends here end up lost with what feels like longer hours; you’re lost in him, inebriated by him, and you’ve even caught yourself becoming clay, with him as a sculptor, molding you into his version of perfection.
Except, you’ve already been created by yourself as the artist, and he’s purely the admirer. He strokes each curve and crevasse of you in adoration, gaze drenched and dripping in fondness, wishing nothing but to bask in your beauty for as much time he has left. Days, hours, minutes, seconds—you were right when you said that you’d never know when he’ll just have to grab his things and go, and Jungkook cherishes each moment he has with you.
He doesn’t want to tell you that what you said was the truth; it means that you’ll push away, that you won’t get to be his, and he’s hardly even fully fallen for you yet. There’s always uncertainty when it comes to being a musician, and Jungkook isn’t the exception.
And yet, he still pushes through, despite knowing all of this information.
Jungkook still cherishes his time with you, and pushes to the back of his mind that he might have to leave one day. You’ve mentioned pumpkin picking once, and although he’s not really the type of guy to go to a farm and pick a huge round orange colored fruit, he does it because you like it. Apple cider isn’t his favorite, but when you bring the drink up to his lips, he breaks out of his comfort zone to try it anyway. (Spoiler: he hates it.) Even though it sucks, he’d take another sip any day if that means he gets to see that bright laugh again.
But good things always come to an end.
With a sunken look on his face, he leans against the countertops of the pick up station at the café. Apron around your waist and a cup in hand, you eye your sort-of-boyfriend inquiringly. You’ve yet to make it an official label, and to be quite fair, the whole idea of him being a celebrity still doesn’t sit right.
He’s got on that baseball cap again, oversized hoodie with ripped black jeans, matching monochromatically from head to toe. Again, you wonder if he’ll ever get caught because this doesn’t necessarily camouflage him.
“What’s wrong with you?” You ask, popping the cup under the espresso machine. “Why the long face?”
He rolls his lips, almost like he’s hesitant about sharing his thoughts, but when your gaze narrows, he swallows. “I’m… going on tour soon.”
“Oh,” you say, mouth in an ‘o’ shape. It wasn’t surprising, after all, you saw this coming anyways. It hadn’t been the first time he's been on tour since the two of you were friends, but it’s the first since you’ve started this… somewhat of a courtship. “When?”
Clearing his throat, he readjusts his position uncomfortably. He can’t fully read what’s going through your mind, but part of him can already guess that you might not be happy with the news. “…Tomorrow?” The tone is uneasy, like he’s going to cower underneath the closest table.
“Oh,” you reiterate, this time softer. It hurts to see you like this, trying to hold yourself together as if you haven’t told him a million times before that this is what it’s going to feel like when he leaves for tour. “I see. Do you know when you’ll be back?”
Jungkook’s shoulders drop. He lets out the deepest of breaths with downcast eyes, evidently avoiding meeting the frown that he knows sits upon your pretty lips. It’s barely been a couple weeks since you’ve let him pursue you, barely enough time to get to know you in ways more than friends should, and he already has to go. And maybe he should’ve listened when you told him how arduous the goodbyes would be, but he selfishly wanted you to be his so badly. This wasn’t the last goodbye, it was a ‘see you again soon’ farewell, and he hopes you’ll see it the same way he does.
“It’ll… be quite some time. The tour is for three months, but we’ve also been invited to perform on the James Corden show.”
Your face brightens—quite the opposite of what he was expecting. “Wait—James Corden? Jungkook, that’s a pretty big platform. You guys would blow up even more with this opportunity. That’s amazing, I’m happy for you!”
But he sees that glimmer in your eyes.
At first, it’s easy to mistake it as one with hope, elation, and love.
He later finds out it was from your eyes watering.
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This is his dream.
On stage, with a fandom that grows from thousands to tens of thousands to hundred thousands, and eventually, millions. Singing his heart out, with the songs that he produced and wrote with his best friends and being able to share it with the world.
Yet, it doesn’t feel right.
When he says, “I’ll see you again soon,” with a kiss on your forehead and a hug, your body gives him chills. It’s cold, and he could feel brisk winds in the air, blowing against the back of his jacket, but it’s supposed to be warmer. Before he left for the day, he checked the weather app to make sure.
Why is it freezing when he’s with you?
He calls, as promised, sharing stories of his journeys—from having to be in a cramped RV for hours on end with the boys, sleeping in those bunk beds that remind him of his youthful days at summer camp, and stopping at tourist attractions when they see one. His face is always radiating brightly, eager to talk to you and share his experiences, but his favorites are hearing yours.
The first couple times, you’re candid.
You share freely and comfortably, and he wants nothing more than for you to talk for hours. He loves hearing your voice; describes it as ‘smooth as honey’ yet at the same time ‘light and flowy like a feather’ and compares it to the melody of his favorite song. Jungkook was smitten by you, eyes filled with hearts each time your name popped up on his phone lockscreen. It made him forget the last time he saw you, how distant you felt despite being in his arms.
When he texts you goodnight, you’re off underneath the covers. Cozy, wrapped snugly with your blanket that you bragged you bought for a smacking good deal of twenty bucks, claiming that you’ve seen these go for at least eighty dollars. He misses that smile, the one he’d see before he’d turn off the bedside table lamps on nights he’d stay over at your apartment, and gets a whiff of lavender from your body wash when you toss and turn in slumber. The way you crinkle your nose in your sleep, and the way your jaw tenses and releases (he suggests you go see a dentist about that, but you’re so stubborn), it’s the little things that he begins to notice the absence of when he’s not near.
It was exciting and eventful at first; waiting for the clock to strike three in the afternoon to get a call from Jungkook after he took a break from a recording session, and another one just before bed, you could expect your phone to blow up between the hours of nine and midnight. The text exchanges were rapid fire too, Jungkook never failing to respond back as quickly as possible, sometimes replying to your messages directly or sharing a meme in the hopes of making your day.
Things get harder, you grow to learn, and it’s a mature thing to come to the consensus that this kind of relationship requires a lot of effort. You’re exhausted from your daily activities. From work to school, by the time you’re home, you’re to cook dinner for yourself, clean up your mess, possibly do other chores, shower, and prepare for bed. There isn’t even time for yourself anymore, let alone for somebody else, but you’re also starting to believe that Jungkook can’t even keep up with this lifestyle anymore.
Three months. Three months is a lot of time for a person to be apart from another, and enough time for people to change.
You spot Jungkook just in time for his performance when James Corden comes back from commercial break, and needless to say, he’s always breathlessly handsome. He’s got his hair slicked back, exposing the piercings that embellish the lobes of his ears, makeup that darkens his irises, and lips painted that familiar faint pink. With seven guys in the band, Jungkook stands center beside Jimin, but something about him specifically captures your eyes, although it seems like you’re not the only one.
His name is practically plastered on the majority of the handmade posters in the crowd, and your heart sinks. He’s gotten so popular in the past couple months; from billboards to trending topics on Twitter to magazine covers and endorsements on big name brands on Instagram, Jungkook and his bandmates have increased their fame three times more than what it had been before.
You see him everywhere on social media.
And sadly, you see him less in your personal messages and calls.
Daily video call dates get cancelled. The first couple times, all was forgiven. Things happen, and with his new hectic schedule, it’d be crazy if he didn’t reschedule. But eventually, it became too much. When he was available, you were either working a shift at the cafe, stuck in class, or meeting with your classmates for a group project. It never worked out, and in all truthfulness, your patience was wearing thin.
When Jungkook comes back, it’s like looking at a brand new person.
He’s gotten an uppercut, a couple new tattoos that adorn his arm, and walks with a certain jump in his step that you couldn’t miss. There’s a newfound confidence that he’s gained over tour, like he knows his own self worth, or even inflated the one he’d already had. But Jungkook is still a hopeless romantic. That’s the one trait that’ll never leave him, no matter where he is in life, he’ll always believe in love.
Entering through the double doors of the coffee shop, the bell above the entrance rings, and your sunken eyes barely even look up to see him. “Hey, welcome to Brew-tiful Beans, cold brew let me know your order?”
Jungkook snorts. “Did they… Did they train you guys to do those new greetings?”
Startled by that familiar voice, your ears perk up. Your body freezes, like the soles of your shoes are super glued to the broken dull tiles behind the counter and you can’t even bring yourself to turn to look at him. It’s been weeks since you’ve last talked, someone who was supposed to be chasing you, someone who was supposed to show you what it feels like to be loved. And he didn’t. He didn’t reach out, he didn’t leave a text, he didn’t call. He did nothing.
And he comes back like nothing even happened?
“Um,” you respond uncomfortably, wiping your hands off on the front of your apron despite nothing being on them. “Uh, yeah. New corporate thing. They came down from headquarters and trained all the baristas.”
Jungkook showcases that signature smile that easily swooned you before. It’s a bit different now, especially with how it’s been recently. “You hate all that fancy corporate stuff,” he states factually, and he’s right. You’ve mentioned it a plethora of times before, and part of you is slightly surprised he remembers it. “Experience only matters when it’s special to each person, if I recall that correctly. I know you’re a pro with all that customer service stuff, you told me you’ve been in the industry for most of your life.”
“Yeah,” voice soft and tone slightly off from the one you normally exhibit, Jungkook raises a brow questioningly because this abnormality doesn’t go over his head. “Something like that.”
He crosses his arms over his chest and inhales sharply. You’re different, and whether or not in a good or bad way, Jungkook wasn’t sure but he was going to figure out why. And he’d been so caught up with your punny greeting that he almost didn’t notice your recently cut hair, and when you pull your phone out to place it by the register, there’s a crack on the screen too.
“Something is off.”
You blink, this time, eyes meeting with his own. He makes your legs feel like those silly putty toys you used to play with in your youth, and your heart palpitates like you’ve just ran a marathon. Jungkook reminds you of your middle and high school crushes, the ones that make your hands all sweaty and give you the jitters as if you’re about to take a test you didn’t study for. It’s not fair that he reads you like an open book—were you really that transparent? You thought you did a good job of closing yourself off, but you have to keep reminding yourself that Jungkook is observant when it comes to these things. He’s a hopeless romantic, one that will continuously see nothing wrong with this relationship because he prefers the on-the-surface part of it.
“I’m at work, Jungkook,” you retort coldly, the same way you did when he said his goodbyes. Why is it that you keep up such a believable facade behind a screen, but in person, you’re freezing like a block of ice? “Maybe we can talk later.”
Hurt, he nods and steps away. It makes you feel worse because he’s so respectful, and the reasons you have for wanting to break this off always seem to dissipate when you’re around him. He’s just so… warm, like if home was a person.
At the end of your shift, he sits with tired eyes at the corner of the cafe. He knows better than to do or say anything when you ask for space, and to get out of your hair when you need it.
“Listen,” you begin, after locking the double doors of the shop. “I think… we should end this.”
Startled, Jungkook steps back. “Wait—what?”
Sighing, you rake your fingers through your tangled locks tiredly. All the negative thoughts had been eating you up inside, and staying with Jungkook wasn’t helping. “I can’t get over it. I can’t fucking get past all the things that come with you because you’re a celebrity.”
“Because I chose to follow my dreams, I can’t be with you?” This can’t be happening.
“It’s not your fault—”
He scoffs. “Damn fucking right it’s not my fault. I did everything—I made you feel loved. And… that’s it?”
“I just… I don’t think I could handle all the uncertainty.” That was it. There wasn’t anything else after that, but he couldn’t hear anything else after your last apology over the sound of his heart shattering into a million pieces.
And with that, he watches as you drag your exhausted frame away, head down and dig into the fabric of your hoodie where he doesn’t hear the faint sobs that escape your lips.
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“We broke up,” Jungkook snaps, aggressively tossing off the headphones that sit atop his head. “We weren’t even officially together and she fucking broke up with me.”
“Bro, I’m sorry,” Namjoon says, patting Jungkook’s back comfortingly. He knows that Namjoon is trying his best in this situation, one he’s not familiar with himself, but he wants Jungkook to feel better. “I know she meant something to you.”
“This is stupid,” covering his face with his hands, he leans back in his swivel chair. Going through heartbreak should get these juices flowing, get his thoughts moving and the pen scribbling on pieces of scrap paper full of ideas. But he’s got nothing. Empty, clean sheets of printer paper, all stacked nicely upon his work desk with a filled cartilage of ink in his pen. “How the fuck did I get broken up with because I’m a rockstar? I’ve been searching far and wide for a girl to date me for who I am without the whole costume getup. Then when I find her, she doesn’t want the side that the rockstar brings but it’s part of me.”
Namjoon sighs, pulling a seat beside Jungkook. “Well, maybe she isn’t the girl for you.”
“She’s definitely the girl for me,” he corrects, shoulders and hands dropping. “She’s so the girl for me, and the fact I can’t have her because of the consequences that come with my dreams makes me feel like shit.”
“You’ll find someone who will,” the older friend assures, picking up the pen to hand it to him. “Trust me. Don’t settle for someone who would make you consider quitting your dreams.”
But that’s the thing. You don’t ask him to pick between his dreams or you, you made that decision yourself. To him, you all had all the qualities he’d want in a partner—smart, beautiful, kind, and liked him for who he was behind closed doors—but he never stopped to think before if he checked all the boxes for you, and was overly confident despite never saying it.
“She never told me to quit my dreams,” Jungkook snatches the pen from Namjoon’s hold. “She just didn’t think my dreams were fitting for her lifestyle.”
Namjoon nods, finally absorbing in the why of the end of your relationship with Jungkook. “Well, shouldn’t you be grateful? She didn’t continue to lead you on. Told you what she wanted then and there, and moved on.”
He groans, head dropping onto the desk with a thud. “Is it bad that I don’t want that?”
“No, but it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t respect her wishes and do as she asks anyway.”
He knows his leader is right, and he normally always is when he gives life advice, but Jungkook hates that this is what he’s right about. He doesn’t want to let you go, step away from a girl who makes him feel whole again, someone who made him want to keep improving as a person for not just her, but himself too.
But he’s beginning to lose that drive without you by his side.
So, he decides that he’s going to take a combination of both Jimin and Namjoon’s suggestions. Namjoon’s is to move on, and continue to do what makes [him] happy. And Jimin’s is to eat, sleep, record, perform, drink, and fuck.
And shit, does Jungkook do all those things.
He knows that if you were standing before him right now, you’d tell him that he’d become exactly what you said he would. What else would he expect you to say? He’d then deny profusely, waving his hands in dismissal and sending rebuttals your way until you’d get annoyed enough that you would stop. But you’re not here now, and it’s just him. He doesn’t need to impress you anymore. Although he wants to, there’s no need for it now.
Jungkook doesn’t love this lifestyle, as much as he wants to admit that he does, it doesn’t fit him. These girls that snugly sit on him while he’s seated on the leather couches of this blaring loud club aren’t you, and because he’s gotten a taste of what your petal lips are like, he’s addicted and wants nothing else but that. When he’s standing on the dance floor, girls’ asses up against his dick, grinding and swaying their bodies to the music, he only misses the way you turn around in your sleep, curling up to become smaller and he’d be able to wrap his arms around you like a blanket.
He hates having them on his personal bedroom sheets, so he never brings them home. You’ve never been tangled in them, so he doesn’t even have your scent imprinted on his pillowcases, so why would he have some strange girl’s?
So he takes them to a hotel, every single endeavor, fuck them with his frustrations and leave them without any conversation to exchange. Jungkook didn’t want attachments. He’s too busy being into you.
But during that time apart from you, it only makes him miss you… more. He’s gotten everything he’s ever wanted—a record deal, multiple albums, songs that hit top ten on charts, fame, and all the money he could need. If Jungkook decided he wanted to quit pursuing music now, he’d be able to afford it.
And honestly, he’s starting to reconsider this whole rockstar life. Was it worth chasing all your dreams, having all of these so-called ‘great things’ when during it, you have nobody to share it with? Sure, he had his boys, but if he had been completely honest, the money was slowly changing them all. As a group, they rarely hang out anymore. There weren't any of those Friday night dinners, where they used to eat at bbq joints and have just pork skin because they couldn’t afford the fancy meats. Or when they find a way to stretch their money, and find clever ways to do it together as a group, because the up-and-coming artist lifestyle was brutal. They’d try stuffing as many clothes they could in those washing machines at the laundromat so they wouldn’t have to waste another quarter. Eventually, they ended up handwashing everything, but nonetheless, they did it together.
And now, Seokjin only eats Kobe beef if it’s beef. Taehyung’s clothes aren’t thrifted, they just look thrifted, with name brands printed across the fabric. Yoongi can’t seem to relate to any of the guys anymore, much like Jungkook himself, so he coops himself up in the recording studio for days on end, hoping to produce the next big hit. His best friends weren’t his best friends anymore, and once again, Jungkook is lonely. But not just lonely for love, but his friends again.
If this is what happiness is supposed to be, he doesn’t want it.
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It’s been two years since he’s been back here. Here, as in the neighborhood where the apartment he stayed at with the guys when they were just young kids chasing their unattainable dreams was at.
Do you still work in that cafe by the university? Is the cold brew at Starbucks still your go-to? What about those rainy days—is it still the weather you prefer to go driving in? How about your hair? Does it still get tangled in those gold hoops you like to wear? Is Coldplay your favorite band? Or have you already moved on from them like you did with him?
He didn’t know he’d see you here. If he did, he would’ve prepared himself better—maybe wear a nicer shirt, or chose those jeans that he splurged on instead of these sweats that he saw hanging over the back of his computer chair with a t-shirt he definitely put on rotation twice this week. But he can’t turn back now, especially when you’ve spotted him across the room.
You did a double take, he notices, because you even rub your eyes afterwards to see if it’s true.
It’s like time stops. Nobody around him moves, and the room goes silent. You’re somehow exactly the same yet different at the same time—you’ve dyed your hair (some type of balayage, he thinks it’s called), and you look toned (have you been working out?), but the way your mouth curls up at the sight of him, lashes still long and pretty when they brush against the high points of your cheekbones, he knows you haven’t fully changed. You’re still that simple girl he fell in love with.
His trance breaks when you gesture him in your direction, and he’s quick to grab his order from the to-go counter so he can get to you. What’s this weird feeling rushing through his veins? It’s one he hasn’t had in a while.
It's… exciting.
Jungkook’s excited to see you, and he hasn’t been excited to do anything in a while. But seeing you again, in some random coffee shop, in the last place he’d ever think of is… nice. It’s refreshing.
He knows if he tells you how he’s been feeling, you’d roll your eyes and call him a hopeless romantic like you used to. He manages to find the dull, mundane things in life and make it riveting, embellishing it with the “Jungkook-touch” so that it’d seem more fantasy or fairytale-like. But Jungkook hasn’t been able to do anything like that in quite some time, and just looking at you has his heart racing like this only confirms his emotions.
“H-Hey,” he greets, mentally punching himself because how wimpy did he look for stuttering over one goddamn word? “You’re… here.”
You smile so wide that your eyes replicate the shape of your mouth. “Hey! And you’re here. Didn’t think I’d ever see you back.”
Jungkook rubs his nape with an awkward laugh. He still wears that stupid black hat, despite the black now slightly purple in discoloration from overuse. “I… yeah. Needed a break. Wanted to get out of that busy life for a bit.”
You nod with pursed lips with a book laid flat on the table, phone with the screen down, and a cup of iced coffee. “I get that. Took a day off from work to… yeah. Catch my breath.”
“Right,” he says, mostly as a filler for the weird silence. “Um. Yeah, it’s uh… nice seeing you again—“
“Are you single?”
Jungkook nearly chokes on nothing. “W-What?”
You blink, as if your bold question is one people ask casually in a regular conversation. (Spoiler: it’s not.) Tilting your head to the side, you lean back against the booth you’re sitting in with your arms crossed on your chest. “I didn’t stutter.”
“I know that but—”
“Well?” God, even though he hasn’t seen you in a while, the feelings come rushing back like a tsunami. There’s something about you that always has him stuck like this.
“I’m single,” he confirms, although he doesn’t understand why you need this information.
“Great, if you’re interested, I… wanna take you out tonight.”
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Something he remembers from your friendship is that if your hair is down, it’s a special occasion.
And well, your hair is let down, cascading over your shoulders and pretty collarbones. He takes note of the new piercings that ornaments your ears when you tuck a couple of loose strands of hair behind, but that’s when he notices that the piercings weren’t the only thing new—you got a tattoo. It’s dainty, small, and hidden behind your lobes from the world to see and it fits you so perfectly.
“Hey,” you greet with no hint of anxiety in your voice. You’ve decided to wear a grey band tee (unfortunately, it’s not his band), baby blue jeans, and a leather jacket. How do you always remain calm and collected every time? Because he’s nervous out of his mind. Who wouldn’t be though? He’s going on a date with a girl he’s had a crush on, despite not seeing her for two years.
Thankfully, this time, he could impress you. His outfit is casual, but not too casual as before because he opts for an expensive pair of jeans instead of the raggedy ones he had since before his band’s debut.
“Should we go for dinner?”
God, he feels weak. You’re even pretty when you’re eating spaghetti, when you twirl the stringy carbs with a fork, bringing it to your lips with a soft moan. It’s delicious, apparently, and he doesn’t taste the pasta but you’re like a walking advertisement for this dish. He can’t help but to notice how lovely you are holding a champagne flute, the sparkling liquid glossing over those plump lips of yours.
He’s distracted. In his mind, he can’t understand what’s going on here because you’re the one asking him out, you’re the one who suggested to have dinner together. What’s the point of all this?
But you remain eating your food and talking just like how the two of you left off your friendship. Not relationship, but friendship.
Jungkook forgot how easy it was to talk to you—you’re just so welcoming and kind without actual judgement, in spite of your teasing words. You love to banter, he remembers, and that’s a trait of yours that never changed, other than the fact you still make his heart swell like a balloon.
Toward the end of your meal, he thinks the night is over. Truthfully, he’s scared. Afraid that whatever this was is another fleeting moment—another chance for you to walk away once more and tear out his worn heart from the last encounter from you.
Then, it’s like you read his mind because you offer to take a walk to ‘burn off the calories from dinner.’
But, unlike the exchanged laughter and stories over dinner, the walk is quiet. It’s like the awkwardness weighs heavy on both your shoulders, and sits atop his lungs because it’s hard to properly breathe with the burden of uncertainty. Did you have something to say? What’s the reason for having dinner with him?
“I’m sorry,” you blurt, unable to even meet with his stare. You keep your vision forward, looking into the river as the cold air weaves through your hair and cools the heat that rises around your neck from all the anxiety of being with Jungkook. “I told you that I didn’t want to date a celebrity, and I left you. Even though you tried, you made me feel special, and you made me feel loved. I said I didn’t want what comes with dating a rockstar, and I made a selfish decision.”
“It… it was an acceptable selfish decision, if that’s what you’re trying to figure out.”
You laugh, shrugging in your big coat. “I guess. But… I forget sometimes that when you love someone, you make some sacrifices.”
Jungkook chews on his bottom lip. Even when he observes you, the little ticks you give away, he still can’t read you. You’re not the same person you were years ago, and yet, he’s already learning to love this version of you. “Do you?”
You tighten your lips into a straight line for a moment. “Yeah. And even though we only dated briefly, I loved you throughout our friendship. I made a choice—one that was solely for myself, one that I thought I’d be happy with.”
He swallows. “And?”
“I’m happy, but I think I’m happier with you.” His heart clenches. Barely able to get a word in, you continue, “And I can keep being happy with myself, by myself, or I can be happy with you too. I forget sometimes that you can chase your dreams while still loving someone.”
Jungkook blinks. “And what about the consequences of my dreams?”
Finally, you turn and your eyes meet his. They melt into his irises like those hot chocolate bombs when they drop into a hot cup of milk—so sweet, so warm, fitting for the winter. “If you loved me back, you’d never do the things I said I’d assume. I would try—the whole long distance thing when you’re away, maybe even travel and stop by shows. Call you daily. Kiss you goodnight, and wish you sweet dreams,” you pause for a moment, scoffing in disbelief at yourself, “I’m… I’m not usually the hopeless romantic here, Jungkook, but you did something to me.”
This… wasn't what he was expecting out of this date but he doesn’t have any complaints.
Now, don’t get it mixed up.
Jungkook is a hopeless romantic. Not easy.
He doesn’t let you in that simply, no matter how tempting you are with those tainted pink lips that remind him of strawberries. Or how you briefly mentioned there’s a cute little tattoo on your hip bone of something sweet, you’d say teasingly, and it’s got his jeans uncomfortable. You’re a walking temptress, and it’s safe to say that he has to put up a shield over his heart in case you’d want to break it again.
Yet, that same insecurity is swirling in the pits of his stomach again. Do you love him or who he is as a celebrity? Especially now, with his fame rising and more people recognizing him on the streets, he can’t help but wonder once more if you love who he is as a person and not this persona he puts on stage.
So, he tests a couple things.
Jungkook knows how bad this sounds, but in all truthfulness, it’ll make him feel better. He still loved you, even from before you gave him a chance, and even still now when you’re standing before him, a different person. All he wants to know is if you love him like that too.
Slouched over on the worn out black leather couch of his recording studio, Jungkook ponders with his shoes tapping against the laminated flooring. He’s been stuck on this ‘new message’ screen with your name in the ‘to:’ section, fear rushing through his veins like every performance on stage. Except, he’s performing in front of you, to test whether or not these feelings you claim to are what you really mean.
Yoongi eyes Jungkook carefully. The kid has been sitting on this goddamn couch for hours, and although Yoongi thought of speaking up several times, he figured if he left Jungkook be, maybe the problem would resolve itself.
It’s been five hours.
Yoongi can’t focus with all that leg shaking.
“Alright,” he says, breaking the silence with a turn of his swivel chair. “The fuck is wrong with you?”
Surprised, Jungkook looks up. “Huh? What?”
Yoongi points to Jungkook’s phone. “You’ve been staring ar your fucking phone for five hours. Not moving your goddamn fingers but instead you keep shaking your leg. It’s distracting. What are you doing?”
“She’s back,” Jungkook announces, except the way he says it makes it sound like a horror movie. Yoongi picks up on who she is, but he can’t make out why Jungkook would be so scared to talk to you again.
“Okay, so what’s wrong?”
“She said… she made a mistake last time,” he begins, and Yoongi raises a brow in curiosity.
“Again, okay, so what’s wrong with that?”
“Well, what if she’s back because I’m famous, and not because she loves me?”
Ah, it was clicking in Yoongi’s head now. It’s like a lightbulb pops above his head, and everything is making sense now. “I get it. So… what are you doing?”
“I’m gonna ask her to come to our show tonight.”
Yoongi blinks blankly. “O…Okay, and… how’s that gonna determine if she loves you for you or your fame?”
Jungkook’s shoulders drop. “Honestly, I don’t know.”
The two sit in silence for a moment, Jungkook’s mind empty but Yoongi’s head is swarming with ideas. His friend is stuck, is what his brain is telling him, and as a natural instinct, he’s coming up with ten thousand ways to make this work.
“Tell her to come,” Yoongi says, shattering the glass of quietude. “And give her the cold shoulder if she comes. Maybe get Jimin to flirt with her and see if she’s interested in him when he gives her the attention.”
Jungkook snaps his finger as if it’s the best idea he’s ever heard. “Good point.”
You reply in less than thirty seconds later.
you [7:52pm]: sweet offer, but it's sunday and i have work bright and early in the morning. rain check? maybe facetime before you get on stage? i’ll give a kiss for good luck.
Jungkook chokes on his saliva .
Yoongi stares at the bright screen, lost for words.
“Well, that backfired.”
“I only had ideas for when she would go. She’s gonna miss out on a free concert from one of the bands on the top of the charts right now?”
Jungkook scratches his head. That’s true. Who would do that if they’re thirsty for clout?
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This new plan dawned on him on a Thursday afternoon.
He recalls that you brought up momentarily about how you worked in a research lab at the University downtown, and coincidentally enough, it’s close to his record label.
So he thought… why not?
Why not meet her outside of her workplace with no disguise? Would she like that? If she truly was into this for fame, she’d like being seen in public with him without the hats and jackets.
And the second he sees you pushing through those double glass doors, Jungkook expects your face to brighten at the surprising sight of him.
God, he completely forgot. He completely forgot about his first impression of you—that day at the coffee shop where you ran into each other, spilled coffee, and profanities slipped.
Well, more than just explicit language.
Remember how he said he didn’t want to relive some of the insults that spewed out of you?
He’s reliving it again.
You’re fuming, it’s unbelievable. If he wasn’t in shock, he’d be able to hear the smoke whistling from your ears as you’re attacking him again. Your words are like bullets, and he didn’t wear a bulletproof vest to protect himself from it. Shuffling through your bag, he notices a white jacket stuffed into the opening, and you manage to pull out a black baseball cap out of it.
“Wear this.”
Jungkook stares at you, perplexed.
You shove the hat into his chest. “Loosen the back strap. Wear it. We’re on a fucking college campus, you can’t seriously think you can just walk around here without anything on, right?”
Slowly, he grabs the hat from you and readjust the tightness before putting it over his head. “You’re mad?”
“You idiot, remember when I said that even hats don’t cover your face that well? It’s a stupid disguise. But it’s still better than fucking walking around with nothing on. Jesus, Jungkook, what came over you?”
“Sorry, I just—”
You squint your eyes at Jungkook. “You’re testing me.”
He clears his throat, something caught in his windpipe just like he’s being caught red handed right now. “W-What?”
You cross your arms over your chest, sucking in your cheek as you observe his slightly cowering expression. “You’re testing me. And that’s fine, Jungkook. I come back suspiciously when you’re more famous than before. I get the precautions. But don’t fucking put yourself in a position where you could hurt yourself physically because you’re afraid I’ll hurt you emotionally.”
So, that failed too. And you figured him out.
To be fair, while he was trying to come up with a plan to see what your whole thing was going back to him, it sort of brought him and his friends back together.
Everyone was excited to come up with something—Yoongi had experience dating a girl who was like that, and the rest of the guys just had fun chiming in.
“Video girl syndrome,” Yoongi begins, stealing it from a Jonas Brothers song (the original JB, but he’s not gonna get into that right now), released in 2008, and pretty much describes the girls Jungkook talks about when he says he doesn’t want to end up with them. “is when they live for fame, love the money—”
“You could just recite the whole entire song for us,” Taehyung interjects, and Yoongi whacks him on the back of his head with a newspaper.
“Alright,” Namjoon says, voice louder in volume to get the rest of the boys to stop playing around. “How about we ask you questions about how she’s been acting lately? From our experiences, that is, since I’m a thousand percent sure we’ve all dated video girls.”
“Mm, and see if you’re a victim,” Seokjin raises up the beer can in his hand and Hoseok rolls his eyes.
“I got one!” Hoseok shoves Seokjin to the side and he glares at his band mate from the corner of his eyes before brushing it off. “Does she laugh at your jokes when you’re not even being funny?”
Jungkook tilts his head. Has he ever tried being funny in front of you? Because, he’s never seen you laugh at anything he said. But—other exes come to mind when Hoseok says this. “Mm, no.”
“Has she ever asked you for money?”
“Only because I ordered a drink from the cafe she worked at.”
“What about your famous friends? Does she name drop any of them?”
Jungkook furrows his brows in thought. Did you? Then a quick flashback of you pulling out your phone when he brings up Namjoon, and tapping of characters into a google search before you nod and pull your lips into a straight line with a, “I remember him,” then resuming back to listening to his story.
“She googles everyone I name drop.”
Namjoon leans back in his seat. “So wouldn’t that just prove that it isn’t like that? What are you so worried about?”
Jungkook sighs. “I don’t know I just—”
“He’s worried she’s gonna leave him again,” Jimin adds on, and Jungkook is taken aback because out of all the guys, he thought Jimin would be the least to understand. “But if she’s back now, and she says she’ll try, you should let her. Let her prove to you instead of you having to come up with tricks. She’s chasing you, remember? Because she left in the first place.”
At first, Jungkook thought that the person who wouldn’t have any ounce of input would be Jimin.
But he didn’t realize that during the times he’d been desperate to have a friend to offer a shoulder for him to lean on, Jimin needed one too.
It’s what prompts Jungkook to actually start lifting up that barrier he put up to protect himself from you. He invited you over for dinner at this old KBBQ joint with his friends, the one he was missing after all the time, and the laughter you brought out of them made Jungkook feel like… this is what he was wishing for. This was that puzzle piece in his life that needed to be found. And for the first time, Jimin speaks about his experience with a ‘video girl’ and Jungkook’s outlook on him changes.
The fact that he couldn’t share anything comfortably in front of his so-called best friends, but he does it easily with you spoke volumes. All six boys with their ears perked up gave nothing but undivided attention to Jimin, and it aches Jungkook’s heart knowing he wasn’t there for his friend when it was vital.
It’s why Jimin is the way he is. And honestly, Jungkook can’t even blame him.
But he makes a good point—make you do the chasing.
And, surprisingly enough, it works.
The things Jungkook used to do for you, to make your relationship with him work and prove that just because he’s a celebrity, it doesn’t mean he can’t be a trusting, average boyfriend. Those facetime calls were always initiated by him in the past; now it’s your name that pops up on his lock screen with a cute selfie he saved as your contact photo.
He learns that you don’t love going to his shows, not because you weren’t a fan of his music, but because you just didn’t love loud spaces. It’s why you prefer those special floors of the library, where there’s quiet muttering since it’s not a ‘quiet zone’ but enough sound for white noise in the background. It helped that you didn’t like entirely hushed rooms either.
But you meet him after, wrapped in a coat despite him telling you to stay home because it’s too cold outside. And yet, you ignore his requests with a sweet smile on your face, tugging not on your just lips, but his heartstrings, with a honeyed, “hello,” when he spots you standing outside their van.
“What are you doing here?” He says, voice mixed between anger that you’re standing out in the freezing cold but excited because the girl of his dreams came to see him after a show. “I thought I said stay home.”
“I’m an adult, I can make adult decisions,” you state firmly, bouncing in the soles of your shoes. “I wanted to drop by. Ask if you want to hang out.”
Jungkook lifts a brow. “It’s late.”
“We can hang out at my apartment,” you reason, and Jungkook could hear the giggles from in the car coming from his band mates. He could almost feel the heat radiating off of you that rose to your cheeks in embarrassment, but bold and loving is how you’re trying to present yourself in front of Jungkook since he’d always been the one to give. “So… what do you say?”
“Say yes, you idiot!” Taehyung hollers and Namjoon slaps his hand over his mouth.
With a hearty laugh, Jungkook gestures his head to the van. “What Tae said. Sure. I’ll come over.”
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You don’t live in the same apartment building as you used to. Just like yourself, you’ve moved on to bigger and better things.
For one, it’s spacious and not cramped like your old studio. Your kitchen, dining room, and bedroom aren’t in the same vicinity, and where you sleep has its own four walls that don't take you to the next room after two steps forward. Instead, you’ve not only graduated with a PhD, but you’ve also graduated from a studio to a one bedroom apartment.
It’s kind of nice seeing you in a different setting—just a few years ago, you were struggling to make ends meet; rationalizing amounts of food, calculating how much of a dollar gets split to what but now you’re asking him if you could treat him out for dinner.
When you slide your jacket off, putting it on a hanger to toss onto the rod in the closet, he grows slightly anxious. It’s not like how it was two years ago, it’s not even close. You’re the vocal one here, taking the lead in this so-called relationship, and once again, you’ve got him feeling weak in his knees for you.
“Are you okay?” You ask, breaking the silence. It’s easy to sense his nervousness, especially when Jungkook doesn’t often get that way around you. He’s usually comfortable, calm, and cool, but tonight, he exhibits the characteristics of the old version of yourself when he was bolder.
Jungkook clears his throat. “Mm,” he hums, as if something really was stuck in there, but the only thing lodged in his throat are his words. “I’m uh, I’m good. We’re… we’re hanging here?”
“Yeah,” you respond, pursing your lips as you extend your arm. At first, Jungkook’s heart starts racing, thinking you’re asking to hold his hand, but you gesture to the jacket over his shoulder and he mentally sighs of relief. “I made some cookies. Wanna drink coke and watch a movie?”
This… makes Jungkook laugh. A laugh that he hasn’t had in a while, one that roars from the depths of his chest, one that’s so genuine and warm, one that he hasn’t caught himself reacting in this way in a while. There’s something simple about how you say it—so harmless, casual and innocent. Dirty thoughts don’t surround your head, just a sweet night with him and junk food.
The night is blissful. He gets to shower in your bathroom, doused in that intoxicating lavender you emit off your skin, and get into his sweatpants instead of those leather pants he always wears on stage.
“I didn’t expect you to be there tonight,” he says, ruffling his damp hair. “It was cold, and I said not to go.”
“I thought we went through this,” snatching the remote from the coffee table, you’re already skimming through your abundance of options on Netflix. “I’m an adult who can make adult decisions.”
He can’t help himself. That grin that pierces through his exterior is hard to control. “And is one of them choosing ‘Soul’ as an option for a movie night? You realize that’s a kid movie, right?”
Flabbergasted, your head jolts to his gaze. “Have you ever even watched it?”
You’re cute. “No but—”
“Jeon Jungkook, just because films are animated doesn’t mean they’re limited to the viewing of only children.”
And, you’re right. He finds himself on the verge of shedding tears, and despite it being the fourth time watching it, you don’t fail to cry every time.
Maybe he shouldn’t do this anymore. Maybe he should stop playing these games, stop testing you and seeing if you truly mean what you say because life is too short to spend wasting it on wondering on the ‘what if’s’ when he has you right here, just fingertips lengths away on your loveseat couch. Because you’re here, you’ve asked him to keep you company tonight, and you don’t run away from your feelings like you used to.
Quite frankly, that’s all he asks.
You’re everything else he hopes for you to be, and yes, you have flaws, but who doesn’t? But with you—he just wanted to understand you, and for you to reciprocate it.
Now that you have, what was he waiting for?
It doesn’t take long for you to get tangled in the sheets with him, Jungkook’s hand finding a way to slide up the side of your face, threading through your hair that falls loose from its bun. Lips locked, sucking and licking, he misses the sweetness of you, how disorientated he gets from just being with you, and how happy you make him.
Hazy, he pulls away with a string of saliva between the two of you. Your irises are swirls of the skies, the ones that lead to an unknown, yet he feels comfortable like this. And part of him finds comfort that you’re just as uneasy and complacent as he is. “Is this okay?” Jungkook asks, and you feel your chest tightening from the motive of the question.
“If you’re okay, I’m okay,” you answer softly, eyelids fluttering closed. Lashes damp, they brush the highs of your cheeks so prettily, so effortlessly, just as you’ve stolen his heart.
“I want you to be okay,” he clarifies, and you nod with a soft, reassuring smile.
“I’m always okay if it’s with you.”
You’ve had previous lovers before. Ones that claimed to love you, and ones that weren’t technically ‘lovers’ but were flings. And comparing this experience with Jungkook to them makes you realize a couple things.
That darkened gaze he has on you, tongue pressed flat against your clit, hands on your thighs to push you down, stopping you from shutting your legs. Fingers raking through his wavy hair, your head throws back with a gasp when he sucks, the sound filling your ears and heat rises up to your face. Were you that wet already? He’s barely got his mouth on you, and the fact he’s got you so weak already makes you slightly embarrassed.
But Jungkook doesn’t care. He just wants to see that pretty face contort in pleasure when he does that thing with his tongue that other girls claimed sent them to heaven. (He won’t tell you they said that though. They’re in the back of his mind.)
Kissing the side of your thighs, you’re woozy, attempting your best to catch your breath, but a finger slips into your opening before you’re able to relax. His lips wrap around your nub once more, and when he thrusts another finger in, you’re unraveling under his touch and you see whites behind your lids with a shutter of your body.
Rising up, Jungkook grins cheekily. He’s glad it’s him that’s got you like this, and he’s so full of elation knowing that he gets to be with you in this way. Pushing away the wet strands of your hair that sticks to the side of your face, he gets to see that gorgeous face a bit better. With a gentle peck on your nose and a rub on your cheek with his thumb, it doesn’t take much for him to ask, “are you okay we go further?”
Yes. Yes! Fuck yeah. Totally. Shit, yeah. But you don’t want to seem too excited around him, no, it’s too early in the relationship. With a cool, calm tone, you reply with an airy, “yes.” If only you knew that your heart skipped a beat because he’s such a gentleman, even with a raging boner in his boxers that was starting to hurt.
He swallows. He’s slept with you, but he’s never had sex with you before. Although there’s going to be many more times after this, the first is always special. Even when he accidentally bumps noses and foreheads with you clumsily, the imperfection of it is what swells his chest. It makes this real.
Pulling away, Jungkook tugs off his briefs before pumping his cock a couple times. The bead that sits atop of his dick gets smeared with his thumb, and even though you’re tempted to suck him off, Jungkook doesn’t even give you enough time to insinuate it because he’s already rolling a condom on and positioning himself in between your legs.
“Last chance,” he says breathily, holding himself back from fucking you apart because this sight of you, with that layer of sweat glistening from the dim lights in the room, has him swooning like some horny teenager. “Are you okay with this?”
Chewing on your bottom lip shyly, you nod.
Those past ‘lovers’ make you feel like the fumbles during sex are bad. They make those moments that seem innocent, despite the not-so-innocent act, feel wrong. The wet bed sheet underneath you are normal, and when kisses get messy, it’s not gross, it’s sexy. And with Jungkook, he makes you feel okay with all these things, even more.
Nose dug into the crook of his neck, you suck on the exposed skin gently before placing a ginger kiss on the flesh. His thrusts are languid, fearing that he’d hurt you, but when you give him the go with a whisper to his ear of all the dirty things you want him to do you, Jungkook doesn’t just have to hold himself back from splitting you apart, but also the fact he might cum too fast from your sultry words.
It doesn’t take long, but he makes sure you reach your orgasm once more.
And when your eyes are clenched shut, brows dipping in satisfaction with your lips opening with a quiet moan, Jungkook pistons his hips several times more before he stills, ropes of cum released into the condom.
Cleaning you up, he then tosses the condom and used tissue into a trash bin nearby before pressing a tender peck on your lips.
With your head resting on his chest and his arm around your frame, there’s nowhere else you’d rather be than in the embrace of Jeon Jungkook. Even if you needed two years to figure it out, you’re glad you did. And him? Although the time apart broke him, the healing made him a better person. A realistic one, one that doesn’t always have his head up in the clouds for love.
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With a quick strum of his electric guitar, the sound blares through the speakers of the venue. Jungkook steals a quick glance at Jimin, who mirrors that same content smile as himself, and that sparkle in his eyes returns from a hiatus that he never realized wasn’t there for a while.
The crowd is different tonight, and he could say that he can’t pinpoint why, but Jungkook knows why.
It’s you.
He hates being that hopeless romantic that claims you responsible for all these changes in his life, but you are the reason. He’s never seen his bandmates this… harmonious in the past two years. The way that Yoongi actually laughs, smacking Taehyung’s arm when he’s joking around too much, Namjoon shaking his head when Hoseok chimes in, and Seokjin nagging at them for it—he missed this. And he missed turning around midway through the show, watching their heads bobbing to the music, lost in the tunes and immersed in making their dreams come true.
Jungkook can’t help but let that smile tug from the edges of his mouth, especially when he spots you in the crowd, swaying side to side with a friend of yours, beer in hand and sporting that cute grey t-shirt with his band name on it with a pair of jeans. Everything about this feels right. He doesn’t even care that it’s the third bra thrown on stage in the past twenty minutes. He’s happy to be here.
All Jungkook wants is love. And to share the success of his dreams with the people he loves.
And finally, he gets to.
He gets to share that with both you and his best friends.
2K notes · View notes
latetaektalk · 4 months ago
(road)tripping for you | jjk
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“it was just supposed to be a roadtrip; your best friend, her boyfriend, his best friend, and you. but it gets a little more complicated (and a whole lot more awkward) when your best friend and her boyfriend have to drop out and you’re left to go on the trip with none other than jeon jungkook, a complete stranger. well, a complete stranger except for the fact that you hooked up two years ago.”
— genre: roadtrip! AU, strangers to lovers! AU, only-one-bed! AU, summer! AU, fluff, a bit of angst
— pairing: jungkook x female reader
— word count: 31.071
— warnings: cursing, light alcohol consumption, awkward situations, clichés
— playlist: click here
— a/n: alright im happy and incredibly nervous to present this baby !! its completely self-indulgent, cheesy as shit, and not really edited, so i hope you guys enjoy! id also like to thank lira @koocycle​ for listening to me cry about this fic!! couldnt have done this without you! also, this is my entry for @ficscafe​’s exchange event, written for @jeonsweetheart​​ !! i really do hope you enjoy this one and sorry that this is so long! i uh also stalked your blog a bit and was inspired by how you assign a song to every fic, so i did the same! hope you dont mind!! my pick for this au is “safety net” by ariana grande !!
— lyric: tripping, falling, with no safety net 
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The summer is always too short.
The realisation comes to you while you’re waiting in the car and fanning yourself with a make-shift paper fan because the AC broke two weeks ago and you haven’t had the money to get it fixed yet, waiting for Sooyoung who just walked into the convenience store to buy some snacks. 
You look out to your left. The sun’s still high up in the sky for how late it is, bleeding its last bit of light into the clouds. Couples and families are walking past you, chatting and laughing, holding melting ice cream in their hands. You hear the laughter of children playing tag down the street, another handful are chasing each other with a water gun. Through the cracked window, you feel the warm and humid air come in, hitting your cheek. It’s at that moment you realise it.
It’s sad.
But at the same time, you realise it’s fitting. Summer arrives with magic every year—the nights somehow seeming endless, the days stuffed with almost suffocating and paralysing potential, indeterminate relationships and friendships, and the air filled with infinite possibilities and promises, all within reach, so close and still not close enough, a hopeful humming accompanying it. It’s reeling. 
So of course, time passes quicker. Of course, summer is fading and fleeting. Of course, it’s all over in the blink of an eye. It’s magical after all.
It’s that magic that prompted you to ask out your crush your sophomore year (you (fortunately) lasted less than a handful of months), that gave you the foolish courage to cut your hair with a pair of blunt kitchen scissors at two in the morning your junior year (it was a disaster), and made you climb out of your window Tangled style after you got grounded so you could spend the last days of summer with your friends under the night sky your senior year (some of the greatest nights of your life). 
It’s the same magic that provokes you to turn to Sooyoung and ask her this when she comes back with an armful of snacks (without the Cheerios you asked for though).
“You wanna go on a roadtrip?”
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It’s a stupid idea you conclude halfway through planning.
Because three issues come up. First, neither of you have much saved up (read: barely anything), which makes paying for the hotel stays and the car you’re going to rent (since yours is shit and Sooyoung doesn’t have one) a lot more difficult. And second, Sooyoung can’t drive, which would make you the only driver, which obviously, you can’t be on a cross country roadtrip. Last but not least, Sooyoung’s and Namjoon’s two year anniversary is coming up, and while she hasn’t made it the official third issue, you know she doesn’t want to spend their anniversary apart.
But Sooyoung somehow comes up with a solution to all of the problems.
For the first (and third) issue, she suggests taking Namjoon with you. This way you can split the costs for the hotels and the car. And obviously, if he’s on the trip too, they won’t be apart during their anniversary. You’re more than happy with the solution. The same can’t be said about the solution she suggests for the second issue.
“Look, if he came along, we’d have a second driver and—” You walk over to the snacks section but Sooyoung follows you, her grocery list long forgotten. “—we could split the costs of the hotels and car by four!”
You closely examine two poorly designed bags of cookies, neither looking all that appealing, pretending like you couldn’t hear her. You go with the cheaper option.
“Y/N,” Sooyoung says and pokes you in the ribs. You flinch and almost drop the cookies. You give her a scowl. “Consider it?”
“I already said no.” You turn on your heel and walk away.
“Please, Y/N,” she whines, catching up with you and blocking your way. 
You purse your lips and narrow your eyes. “Can’t someone else come with? Does it have to be him?”
“Kook’s Joon’s best friend,” Sooyoung says, and you cringe at the nickname. You don’t think you’ll ever get used to her calling him that. “They’ve actually also talked about going on a roadtrip before, you know? So when I mentioned it…”
She trails off, but you don’t need her to keep talking. You know where she’s getting at.
“No, Soo, I just-” You cut yourself short, and shake your head. “It’s just so embarrassing. I bailed, dude. I didn’t even bother to wait for him to wake up and shit.”
The image materialises in front of your eyes; the morning you woke up next to the doe-eyed boy you never thought you would get this close to, or even talk to. It feels like a fever dream. Not only is it unlike you to hook up with a stranger, but of all people, you could have fallen into bed with it was Jeon Jungkook? Sometimes you’re convinced it was all just a fever dream, it never happened, until you remember you forgot your keys at his place in your haze. Your lost keys remain the only piece of evidence that stops you from convincing yourself you only hallucinated it all.
“Yeah, but it was two years ago!”
You scrunch your face. You’ve heard this all before, and you don’t want to hear it again, so you walk past Sooyoung and head for the checkout, placing the cookies on the conveyor belt. 
“Y/N, can’t you at least think about it?”
“I have.”
“No, you haven’t,” she hisses. “You immediately said no! You didn’t even take a second to consider it.”
You look at her. “Soo, you know exactly how I feel about this- him. Don’t force me to be stuck in a car with him, please.”
Sooyoung opens her mouth but is interrupted by the cashier. The arguing ceases then, and you’re grateful. The peace doesn’t last long though, Sooyoung picking up right where you left off as soon as you finish paying.
“You make it seem like you guys have some major history when you just hooked up. And that was two years ago! It’s been ages! There’s literally no reason for you to still avoid Kook.”
You dig out your keys and unlock your car, slipping into it just to regret it. You groan because even though you made sure to park in the shade, the sun had moved when you were in the store and turned your car into a goddamn sauna. You feel your skin glueing to your seat. Ew. 
You keep the door open to let in some air, and you’re about to tell Sooyoung to do the same, but she interrupts you.
“I actually think he has forgotten about you,” she says, and you toss the cookies in the backseat and tuck your hair out of your face, grabbing your make-shift paper fan. It doesn’t bring much relief, but it’s better than nothing. 
The comment, although you should be happy about it because it’s all you want, irks you the tiniest bit. Because you haven’t. You haven’t even begun to forget him, and the thought it might not be the same for him, that you didn’t leave a single mark in his mind, it hurts a bit
“You think?”
“I know.”
“And how do you know?” 
“Because in the past two years he’s never brought you up, or even alluded to you or the night,” she argues.
“That’s because he doesn’t know my name,” you say. “Probably only knows me by my face. I’m probably that dumb girl that left her keys at his place in his mind.”
Sooyoung sighs, rolling her eyes at your stubbornness. “He’s really nice! You’d know if you would have just gone out with us once.” 
When Sooyoung and Namjoon started dating, it didn’t take long for your two friend groups to grow into a big one, the two organising parties and meetups. You never participated in anything when there was even the smallest chance of Jungkook being there too. No one ever noticed.
“And he’s also really funny-”
“Date him then,” you mumble, which earns you a deserved hit against your arm.
“Y/N, you know I’m in a happy relationship with Joon!” 
“So you’d date him if you weren’t with-”
Another hit.
You laugh, but Sooyoung doesn’t join you, glowering at you instead, and you wonder how this conversation took this turn so quickly. Minutes ago she was giving you puppy eyes and begging you to think about it and now she’s scowling at you and scolding you like a mother.
“I’m serious, Y/N. And before you say we’ll do it next year, you know exactly we won’t. It’s like when you said you’d stop buying so many books this year, or when I said, I’d learn Spanish. The moment we postpone the trip, we’re not doing it anymore, and you know that.” Sooyoung stares into your eyes, waiting for you to say something. When you don’t—because unfortunately, she’s right, and you don’t want to admit that—, she sighs. She takes your hands into hers and tosses your paper fan to the side. 
“Y/N, look,” you quiet down when you see the stare she gives you, “I don’t want to force you into anything. I’m gonna respect your boundaries if you really don’t want him on the trip—” You hear the ‘but’ before she even says it. “—but I promise you first, Kook doesn’t remember. Second, even if he does, he’s not gonna be weird about it. And third, I know he won’t be weird about it because Kook’s probably one of the nicest guys I’ve ever met.”
You think Sooyoung’s done, but she opens her mouth again. “Also,” she sits up, “Joon and I are gonna be there too! So even if it’s weird, which I highly doubt, we’ll serve as buffers! And if you don’t wanna talk to him, you don’t have to either. No one’s saying you have to become friends with Kook, but it’s just-”
She deflates after. She can’t find the right words, but it’s fine. You know what she’s trying to say. You’re not stupid. Without Jungkook this trip won’t be happening. It’s as simple as that.
You sigh and close your eyes. You do realise how ridiculous how you’re acting right now. Like Sooyoung has pointed out, your history only consists of one drunken night. It’s barely anything. Bits and pieces. Scraps really. But it’s enough to have your cheeks burning up.
But if Sooyoung’s right, if Jungkook has actually forgotten about you (which wouldn’t be so unlikely since it’s been two years and you’re sure he’s hooked up with other girls in the meantime), you really don’t have anything to worry about. But if Sooyoung’s not right and he brings it up, you’re fucked. You don’t think you can handle the embarrassment, the questions of why you so rudely fled in the morning. 
On the other hand, you really do want to go on the roadtrip. You think it’d be the perfect way to spend the summer, stretch it out a bit more, fill it with memories you’re going to look back on fondly in a few years. You think it would be the perfect way to savour the summer. It’s all you want, to spend time with your best friend and make memories.
You look at Sooyoung. She’s still staring at you. She’s going to wait for your answer, however long it takes. Because (and you know that) she’s convinced it might just be a ‘yes’. You heave out a sigh.
She’s right, unfortunately. You hope the same will be the case with Jungkook.
It’s almost comical how quickly her face lights up, the corners of her lips turning up into a gigantic grin.
“Wait, really?” she gasps quietly, clasping her hands together, almost like in a prayer. “You’re sure about this?”
No, you’re not, not even a bit. But the things you would do to ensure a great summer with your best friend. You sigh and nod. Just as Sooyoung’s about to burst, you shove your finger into her face.
“But promise me,” you stare her down, “that you’ll stick with me. You can’t leave me hanging!”
She quickly nods, so vigorously you think her head’s going to fall off. “I won’t. I won’t. Don’t worry, Joon doesn’t exist on the trip. You’re my sole focus, I swear.”
“So you promise me?”
Sooyoung stares you down. “Y/N, I promise you I won’t leave you hanging.”
You smile at each other. It’s decided then. Jungkook’s coming on the trip too. You can already feel regret building up in you.
“Also, we gotta get back inside. I didn’t buy shit.” Sooyoung produces her grocery list from her pocket.
You roll your eyes. “You better be quick.”
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In your years of friendship with Sooyoung, she has only ever let you down two times. 
The first time was in your sophomore year when you had just begun dating your first boyfriend and told your parents you were going to stay over at her place and she screwed up covering for you, which led to you getting a three hour long lecture on honesty and being in a relationship so young.
The second time was two years ago when she forgot to tell you she was going to leave the party early with a certain dimpled boy from her Chem class because you’re convinced if she had, you wouldn’t have wandered around looking for her and landed in the arms of a certain doe-eyed boy. Yes, you blame Sooyoung for you hooking up with Jungkook, at least partially.
But those two occasions were the only times she’s ever let you down. Today, however, marks the third time, and this time it’s bad.
Because when Jungkook pulls up to your apartment, Sooyoung and Namjoon aren’t standing next to you like they should be. And they’re also not running late. No, they’re in a completely different city.
Your emotional state is confusing; somehow you’re nervous and pissed off at the same time. It’s hard to find a balance, to think straight with both emotions brewing inside you.
You think time stretches thin when you watch Jungkook park and get out, eyes meeting yours before searching for the two familiar faces. You can’t figure out if he recognises you or not as he walks up to you. Your heart tumbles more and more with every step he takes.
“Hey,” he greets you, and you can see traces of a smile on his lips.
You search for something in his eyes, anything that will tell you if he remembers you, if you look familiar to him at all, but you find nothing. Either there’s really nothing and Sooyoung’s right, or you’re simply too nervous to process this entire thing to analyse the situation at hand.
“Uh, hi,” you breathe out, sounding vaguely out of breath and reedy. You scrunch your nose.
“Where’s Joon and Soo?”
And with that question, you decide he doesn’t recognise you. Maybe you’re wrong, but it’s the conclusion you decide to come to. It’s the only one that allows your voice to gain some firmness, that allows your mind to clear up a bit, that has the nervosity simmering down to a light bubble, allowing space for your anger at the situation at hand.
“They’re not here.”
“Wait,” he frowns, and looks behind you, like maybe he overlooked them somehow, “where are- oh, are they late? Did they text-”
He’s about to pull out his phone, but you stop him, dropping the news on him.
“They’re not coming.”
Jungkook snaps his gaze to you then, a knit forming between his brows.
“What do you mean they aren’t coming?” 
He stares at you with huge eyes, doe eyes so big you think they’re about to fall out. One good slap on the back of his head and they’re out. You’re sure. 
You sigh and close your eyes, your jaw on the verge of breaking. Sooyoung’s dead.
“They just called me,” you hold up your phone as if you needed proof, “and well, turns out they’re out of town and stuck there because the railway companies went on strike.” 
You press your lips together. “They aren’t coming.”
Jungkook stares at you like you’ve just grown a second head, and you can’t blame him. It took you a number of “Wait, wait, wait, what?”s and “You’re kidding, right?”s to process this information too.
He presses his hand to his forehead. “So, what?” The knit between his brows deepen as he comes to the same realisation you came to just a few minutes prior, leading to you cursing out Sooyoung over the phone. “It’s just you and me? No Joon? No Soo?”
You reluctantly nod.
Jungkook blinks at you in total five times before he reacts again, his face morphing into something you can’t pinpoint. It’s something between worry and fear, you think.
“Can’t we go pick them up?” he suggests, a proposal you’ve already made.
“No,” you begin and look into the distance, repeating what Sooyoung told you over the phone. “The issue is that we already booked all of our hotels, so if we were to pick them up, our reservations would fall through. And no, they also don’t let you reschedule either. I guess that’s the service you get when you book the cheapest hotels possible.”
You can see Jungkook think, desperate to find a solution to this. You want to tell him that you’ve thought about it all already, that you don’t want to go on a roadtrip with just him either, but you refrain, pressing the tip of your tongue to the roof of your mouth.
He lets out a hollow chuckle when he comes up with no solution. The sound arises from the back of his throat. It’s meant to lighten the mood, you think. “Well, what fucking genius suggested booking our hotels beforehand?”
You let the question hang in the air for a moment, scrunching your nose and looking down to your shoes before answering, fingers fumbling in front of your stomach.
“I did.”
Jungkook quiets then. Maybe you should have bitten your tongue and not said it.
“Well, I mean,” he scrambles, “you couldn’t have known-”
“I mean it’s not just the hotels,” you interrupt, probably saving Jungkook from embarrassing himself further and possibly even insulting you again. “We also already rented the car.” You gesture behind him. “And Soo and Joon also don’t want to inconvenience us. They said they’d take the next train back and try to, uh, catch up with us.”
He nods then. A prolonged silence stretches between you like gum, sticky and gross. You don’t look at him, and he doesn’t look at you. 
In the end, he speaks first again, clearing his throat. “So, uh, we’re going on this trip together then?”
You press your lips together and tuck a strand behind your ear, still refusing to meet his gaze. It’s almost ironic how good the weather is today, perfect for a roadtrip, a roadtrip you no longer want to go on.
“Unless you want your money to go to waste, yeah, seems like it.”
Jungkook stares at you, and then nods. You look down at your suitcase and put your hand on it. 
This is happening.
You heave out a long sigh.
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“I’m so sorry, Y/N,” Sooyoung tells you, and you know there’s an apologetic look plastered on her face. But it does nothing to calm your anger, your grip on your phone only tightening. “I genuinely feel so bad, Y/N. I swear. I’m truly so sorry.”
“If you’re so sorry—” You look out the window to make sure he’s nowhere. All you see is a stressed-out father hushing his kids back into the car, the gas pump still in his right hand. “—how about you get your ass here right now?”
Sooyoung’s quiet for a moment, and you know she’s looking over to Namjoon. She sighs under her breath, running a hand through her hair. 
“Y/N, I explained it to you, I-I can’t,” she whispers, sounding as guilt-ridden as she did when she called you to tell you she screwed up covering for you. “I wish I could, but we’re stuck here. We-we can’t get away.”
You shut your eyes, feeling the rigidness of your jaw. Deep down, you know this is out of Sooyoung’s control. Still, you can’t help but spit, “I just don’t get why you guys had to go out of town a day before our trip! Just- what were you thinking?”
It’s then that you hear Namjoon in the background ask Sooyoung to hand him the phone, and although she tries to protest, the next thing you hear is his voice.
“Hey, Y/N.”
“Joon, hey.” You try your best to not sound annoyed, emphasis on try.
“Please don’t be mad at Soo. This is my fault. I’m the one that organised this and brought her out here. So blame me.”
You curse under your breath. When Namjoon does this—taking full responsibility for everything, putting the blame solely on himself—, you find it incredibly hard to stay mad. And it’s all you want to be because you’re stuck in a shitty situation. You need to be mad! You have every right to! 
You heave out a sigh and curse. “I guess neither of you could have foreseen this, huh?” 
You can practically hear Namjoon nod, and knowing him, he’s probably making his ‘yeah, exactly!’ face, the one Sooyoung adores so much. 
“Yeah, this was just meant to be a one-day thing for our anniversary, you know?” 
You cringe in disgust and annoyance, not wanting to be reminded that the only reason why Sooyoung and Namjoon are out of town right now is because he wanted to be a romantic and spend some time on their own for their anniversary. You feel awfully single and lonely all of a sudden. 
“I’m sorry.”
You close your eyes. “It’s fine.” 
There’s a moment of silence, and you know exactly what Sooyoung’s about to ask. Your face sours when you turn out to be right. 
“Uh, where’s Kook by the way?” 
“He’s getting gas,” you say. He’s certainly taking his time, you think. You don’t mind now because you get to talk to Sooyoung for a bit, but you hope it won’t be like this for the rest of the trip.
“How’s it going?” she asks, and you hate that you can hear the smile on her face. “You guys bonding?”
“You know if I hadn’t paid for the car and hotels already, there would be no way I’d be here right now, right? If I could have somehow cancelled it all and gotten my money back, I would have?” you tell her, wanting- no, needing to make it very clear to her that you aren’t on this trip by choice, that if you could have not gone and still gotten all of your money back, you would have.
“But for your information, no, we’re not bonding. We just drove in silence for the last ten minutes until he pulled over for gas. It was awful,” you spit.
“Well, I’m sure it won’t be like this for the rest of the trip. Right, Joon?”
And like the supportive boyfriend that he is, Namjoon’s quick to agree. “Yeah, Kook’s really shy and awkward with strangers.”
“You guys just need some time to warm up,” Sooyoung adds, and you hope it’s just that.
“Or I was right,” you mutter, shuddering at the thought. 
So far he hasn’t mentioned anything, but so far your interactions were limited, consisting of you explaining the dilemma you were in, you struggling to load your suitcase into the trunk, a process in which he got into the car and watched you in the rearview mirror, and you two sitting in silence before he (rather abruptly) announced he needed gas and turned into the next gas station.
You don’t remember this awkwardness hanging between you two years ago. But truth be told, you only remember the night in fragments, like a montage in a film, a few handful of images stuck in your brain, nothing concise, pieces of an unfinished film roll—the smile he gave you when you accidentally ran into him, the laugh he coaxed out of you with a joke you wouldn’t remember even if you had been sober at the time, the game of beer pong you won together; and at some point, his place, sitting on the couch, whispers of are you sure? spoken into one another’s ears, whispers that turned from questions into something more delicate, and slowly, also more daring; the taste of alcohol on his lips when he first kissed you, brief and shy, before diving back in, braver this time, almost eager; tender hands that quickly wandered, going beyond where they should be, pieces of garments discarded left and right, a trail to his bedroom; the layer of sweat coating your skin, the air you gasped for however stifling, before finally, in the end, slumber, quiet and peaceful, with smiles on your faces.
You shudder. For once, you want nothing more than to be wrong. You don’t want him to remember you. And before you can hear Sooyoung assuring you of just that (because obviously, that’s what she’s going to say), the sight of Jungkook walking out of the gas station, hands full with snacks, catches your eye.
That’s why he was taking so long.
“‘Oh’? What did you see?”Sooyoung asks, and you’re too confused to answer her. “Y/N?”
“Uh, yeah, sorry.” You snap out of it. “He’s, uh, coming back. Gotta hang up.”
“Well, yeah, go hang up. Please have a fun time with-”
You end the call before Sooyoung can finish, partially because Jungkook’s getting awfully close, but mostly because you don’t want to hear the rest of her sentence.
“Hey,” he mumbles quietly when he slips inside and you return his greeting, adding a quick and awkward wave too, gripping your phone. “Sorry for the- for keeping you waiting.”
You wave him off. He stares at the snacks. You think he’s going to hand you a bag, offer you some chips or nuts, tell you it’s meant for your trip, to keep your stomachs full, but he just reaches behind and puts them in the back. (After all, you’ve got more than enough space.) 
So those are for him, you conclude with a scrunch of a nose, just for him. But that’s alright. He’s not obligated to buy you snacks too, or share them. You’re mere strangers after all. Still, your jaw grows rigid, and you look off to the side to hide it.
Out of the corner of your eye, you see Jungkook do a double take when you take out your earphones. You don’t care. If he wasn’t going to buy you snacks, you’re not going to sit here in silence and twiddle your thumbs.
You don’t pay any attention to the song you’re blasting through your earbuds, much more focused on being the worst passenger possible. 
You unlock your phone.
[You - 10:33] : he bought snacks
[sooyoung !! - 10:34] : OH
[sooyoung !! - 10:34] : thats so cute :((
[You - 10:34] : for himself only
[sooyoung !! - 10:34] : wait what
[sooyoung !! - 10:34] : just for himself???
[You - 10:34] : he put them into the back
[You - 10:34] : didnt offer me anything
[sooyoung !! - 10:34] : oh
[sooyoung !! - 10:35] : well joon did say he’s shy
[sooyoung !! - 10:35] : he probably doesnt know how to interat with you
[You - 10:35] : youd never make these types of excuses for any other guy
[sooyoung !! - 10:35] : wait are you on your phone rn?
[You - 10:35] : nah im texting you on a brick
[sooyoung !! - 10:35] : y/n
[You - 10:35] : wdym am i on my phone?? obviously??
[sooyoung !! - 10:35] : you cant be on your phone!! thats so rude
[sooyoung !! - 10:35] : you’re being such a bad passenger
[You - 10:35] : hes being a bad driver by only buying himself snacks
[sooyoung !! - 10:36] : put down your phone
[sooyoung !! - 10:36] : dont make me block you
[You - 10:36] : lmao like youd dare
[You - 10:36] : you dont have the balls for it
And when your last message doesn’t go through, you freeze. You type up a handful more, none of them deliver. This is a joke, you think. Sooyoung must be messing with you. She’s unblocking you any second now. She has to. She’s your only escape from this! She can’t leave you hanging, again.
But she does.
You close your eyes and swallow the sigh, not even able to begin to fathom the situation you’re in right now: you’re going on a cross country roadtrip with Jeon Jungkook, who happens to be a mere stranger to you aside from the fact, of course, that you hooked up two years ago and you fled his apartment like your life depended on it. But not only that, Sooyoung, your supposed best friend, who has let you down once already today, just fucking blocked you. You think the universe has fun seeing you in misery and-
“... please?”
You take out an earbud. “What? Sorry?”
“Oh, I just-” Jungkook clears his throat, and you realise he’s not really looking at you, eyes dancing around. “I asked if you could hand me a water bottle.”
You blink at him before taking out your second earbud. “Sure, yeah.”
“I should have one in my bag,” he tells you, pointing behind. “You see it?”
You do. It’s in the far corner. There’s no way you’re reaching that. Your bag, however, is a lot closer. So you take out your water bottle.
“Here. Couldn’t get to your bag, so if you don’t mind, you can, uh, drink from mine,” you tell him and try to hand Jungkook your water, but he’s too focused on looking at the road, his hand grasping air several times. 
“Thanks,” he says when he finally gets a hold of it. Five attempts, you count. You bite away your smile. You fail though when you see how much Jungkook struggles to unscrew the bottle. And when he brings it to his lips with shaky hands, you think you’re about to laugh. You don’t though, and reach out to help him instead, steadying the bottle.
“Oh,” he says, surprised, and takes two big gulps. “Thank you.”
You hum and take the bottle from his lips, grabbing the lid too and screwing it back on. You doubt he’ll be able to do it. You don’t bother putting the water bottle back, keeping it in your lap instead. 
For the next ten minutes, it’s silent again. You don’t go on your phone again, not because you feel bad and don’t want to be a shitty passenger. No, definitely not that. You don’t go on your phone again because you don’t want to. 
You watch the traffic, and after a while, you let out a yawn. You think it’s a combination of the mundane view and the fact you barely slept yesterday. You rub your eyes, a gesture that prompts Jungkook to look over to you.
You turn to him too, thinking he’s going to say something. He opens his mouth, but clamps it shut the next second. You blink a handful of times and raise a brow because what was that? But you don’t bother asking him, deciding to look away too. 
And even though you didn’t make a fool of yourself, he did, you feel deeply embarrassed too. Heat crawls up your neck and settles on your cheeks. You think the Germans have a word for that. They call it fremdschämen. Well, you’re fremdschämen-ing.
“If, uh, you-”
You snap your head around. Jungkook isn’t looking at you, eyes dead set on the road, almost like he can’t bring himself to direct his gaze your way.
Jungkook takes a deep breath and collects himself. Before he begins to speak, he clears his throat, “If you’re tired, you can nap for a bit. I wouldn’t mind.”
“Oh,” you blurt out, shaking your head to snap out of it. “Thanks, uh, for the offer. I appreciate it. But I’m not tired.”
And even though you can see that he wants to argue with you, bring up how you just yawned, Jungkook closes his mouth.
It’s silent. It feels like a decade passes by. 
“If you’re tired,” you say, remembering to return the offer, “just tell me and we can switch.”
“Yeah, but I’m not tired.” He waits a moment. It feels like another decade passes by. “So you can, uh, nap for a bit if you want to.”
You can’t help but smile a bit at his words. It’s a nice thing of him to say. “Thanks. I’ll just see what happens.”
“Alright.” He nods. “You mind if I put on some music?”
You gesture for him to go ahead. “Not at all.”
You don’t recognise the song Jungkook plays, but you like it. You like it so much you ask him for the title.
“It’s, uh, ‘Never Not’ by Lauv,” he tells you, and you perk up at the name of the artist. You know him.
“I think I’ve got one of his songs saved.” You pull out your phone to see which one it is, unable to recall the title. 
“‘Paris in the Rain’?” Jungkook says, and you snap your finger at his words.
“Yeah, that’s it!” you say, screwing your eyes shut and pressing your hand to your temple. “How could I forget?”
He smiles at you then, and you mirror him.
And when you fall into silence again after this, it feels a lot less awkward. It’s then that you realise you’ve completely forgotten about your history, the dread that plagued you before at the thought of being in the same car as Jungkook. It disappeared for a moment, but now that you’ve thought about it again, it appears again. You curse yourself.
But before you can spiral, go back to awkwardly sitting in your seat and looking out the window and feeling completely mortified, Jungkook looks over to you. This time he speaks the first time.
“Hey, can I ask?” He doesn’t wait for you to tell him yes. “How did you meet Soo?”
You have to smile at the question. “It’s a long story,” you warn.
“Well,” Jungkook laughs, “I think we might have time.”
You would have rolled your eyes at him for his smartass comment if you knew him better. But since you don’t, you refrain and begin the story instead.
“We went to the same middle school.”
And then you tell Jungkook how Sooyoung and you started by hating each other, for reasons neither of you know. (It was hate at first sight, Sooyoung always likes to say.) You recall how your hatred spawned a series of snarky side comments, snide looks, and scoffs over a period of one year. In the end, it was a boy that brought you together, well, your mutual hatred for him. 
Wongshik was his name. He transferred to your school. More importantly, he was obnoxious, loud, arrogant, and overall, incredibly annoying. Class with him was horrible, so horrible Sooyoung and you couldn’t stop cussing him out during break. And ever since, you two have been joined at the hip. You no longer talk about Wongshik, barely think about him anymore. But you are, in a really weird way, incredibly thankful for how annoying he was. You aren’t sure you would have found one another if it hadn’t been for his obnoxiousness.
“How did you meet Joon?”
Jungkook waves you off. “Our story isn’t that great.”
“You don’t want to tell?”
“Well,” he hums, “I don’t mind. I just don’t think it’s all that exciting. We didn’t go from enemies to friends, you know?”
“I’m sure it’s still great,” you try, and Jungkook scratches his neck, sighing in the end.
“We got assigned as partners for an art project in high school.”
“And then?” 
It’s after you’ve asked the question that it dawns on you that there’s nothing to it, seeing the pink that dusts his cheeks a second too late.
“Nothing. That’s it,” he coughs and shrugs. “We became friends after that.”
“Oh.” It’s all you can say for a moment. “Well, that’s a cute story too!”
Jungkook levels you with an unconvinced look. You hold his gaze for a second before cracking.
“I tried.”
He hums. “I appreciate it.”
And then, you share a laugh. It’s short but genuine. It’s enough, more than you ever expected. This isn’t so bad, you think.
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You don’t fall asleep for almost another two hours. The exhaustion sneaks up on you though, slowly coming on around the one hour mark. You don’t know if Jungkook notices, but once he switches to his lofi songs, it starts to lull you to sleep. 
It’s the sound of the seat belt snapping back that wakes you up.
“Oh, shit, sorry,” Jungkook apologises when he sees you peel your eyes open. “The seatbelt was jammed and I-”
He stops when you wave him off, a soft smile on your lips. 
“It’s fine. It’s fine. Don’t worry about it,” you tell him, voice still thick with sleep. You yawn and rub your eyes, taking in your surroundings. You’re at a rest stop. “Why did we stop?”
“Uh, toilet break,” he admits, not daring to look at you when he speaks. Adorable, you think. Does he think you don’t pee too?
“Yeah, what time is it?” you ask and stretch as much as you can, your joints cracking in relief. 
Jungkook shows you his phone, and you think you must be hallucinating when you see you’ve been asleep for the past three hours. You’ve been on this trip for four hours now, and you slept for half of it. Not only that, Jungkook had to drive all this time. Great, so where’s your award for being the world’s shittiest passenger?
“God, fuck, I’m sorry. I slept so much.”
“What? No, don’t apologise! It’s fine,” Jungkook quickly assures you and gives you a smile. “Don’t worry about it.” He pauses, and looks off to the side when he says it. “I’m glad you got some rest.”
You don’t know what to say to that, your mouth drying up at his words. Your brain is especially slow, still half asleep. So you end up not saying anything. Which is probably the worst thing you can do because an awkward silence hovers around you.
“Oh, uh, yeah,” you tuck your hair away, “you said you needed to pee?”
“Right, yeah, yes, I did. I said that. I gotta pee, yeah.” Jungkook clears his throat, and even though you’re not facing him, he knows you’re cringing. Even he is cringing at himself. 
“Let’s just… go.” You click off your seatbelt and get out before Jungkook can even answer. You throw the door shut and begin walking, not waiting up for him. And as you make your way to the little convenience store, you shove your earbuds back in. Maybe you’re being a little rude, but you can’t bring yourself to deal with this right now. You just woke up for God’s sake!
Inside, you beeline for the snacks, needing to look busy. You pick up a bag of chips and pretend to read the back. Out of the corner of your eye, you see Jungkook head towards the restrooms, and you think you catch him glancing in your direction. You refuse to think about it.
You read the ingredients lists like you know what any of these things are. It’s stupid, you know, but it’s the only thing keeping you sane since panic texting Sooyoung isn’t an option anymore. Your music blasting through your earbuds helps too. 
However, it’s also your downfall. You don’t even hear him approach you.
You instinctively take out your earbuds. The wrong move because you can no longer pretend you can’t hear him.
His greeting sounds harmless enough, friendly some might even say, but when you look at him, you know you’re in for it. God, fuck. It’s obvious. His smile gives it away, the corners of his lips turned up a little too much. You already know, getting him to leave you alone won’t be easy at all. 
“Uh, hi,” you mumble before pretending to go back to reading when really, his presence is the only thing you can focus on. You’re more than aware of how close he is to you, too close.
“I’m Minki,” he tells you, and you give him a hum, regretting not buying those big noise-cancelling headphones. “And you-?”
He inches closer to you. Your grip around the bag of chips tightens. You swallow and take a step back. Maybe you’re wrong. Maybe he’ll get the hint. He doesn’t. He steps closer.
“Uh, I’m Y/N,” you mumble, voice weak, your heart beginning to thump a bit louder. You look around yourself. No one is here. The store is hauntingly empty. You feel your throat tighten. You are on your own.
“Y/N?” he repeats, and you don’t think you’ve ever had anybody say your name like that. On his tongue it sounds wrong, sticky somehow. He emphasises the wrong syllables, rushes and slurs the wrong letters. 
“I like it.” His smile widens. “Fitting for someone as pretty as you, sweetcheeks.”
And you think you’re going to retch. No, seriously. You think you’re going to start dry heaving in the corner right fucking now. Disgust doesn’t even begin to describe how you feel. You don’t think there’s anything grosser than a guy unironically calling you sweetcheeks. You want to throw yourself in front of a car.
“It’s Y/N,” you assert, your face hardening.
“Oh, do you not like sweetcheeks?” he asks and smiles innocently at you. Your jaw locks at his question. “Babydoll then?”
Your grip on the bag of chips tightens, the sound of it crinkling pierces the air. But he never looks away from you, eyes relentlessly staring into yours. He’s trying to get you to break and crack, to cave. He wants to see you squirm, enjoys it, you know that. It takes you everything to not give him the satisfaction he’s craving. Especially when he dares to take a step closer to you.
“Buttercup?” He raises a brow. “How about we talk about it in my car? It’s parked just outside.” 
He points to the doors, like you care where his stupid car is parked. 
You grit your teeth, heart pounding in your chest at this point. He takes another step towards you, and you take one back. You’re about to hit the wall. He’ll have you trapped then. You swallow.
It requires all of your courage to keep your voice level. “Please leave me alone.”
“But why? I feel like there’s a connection here, baby-”
Your knight in shining armour comes just in time. You’ve never believed in perfect timing, but you might now, convinced Jungkook has it. 
Relief flushes through you at his sight, something you never thought his appearance would elicit. So far it has only ever been apprehension and anxiety. It’s a welcome change.
“I don’t think so, buddy.” 
And even though Jungkook’s smiling, he looks scary. There’s a threat tucked between his teeth, pulling on the upturn of his lips. It’s not directed at you, and still, you swallow. The guy’s actually a bit taller than Jungkook, but he looks shorter, probably because he’s cowering under Jungkook’s gaze.
He puts on a brave face though, a frown settling on his features. “Don’t call me buddy. My name’s Minki-”
“Well, you just called my girlfriend baby, didn’t you? Why can’t I call you buddy then?” Jungkook laughs, but it’s hollow and mocking. “What? You don’t like it when people don’t call you by your name?”
You make sure to make no movement or sound. Not that it would make a difference. They are far too invested in staring each other down to pay you any attention. You could have probably knocked over the display, and they still wouldn’t have turned to you.
“What do you even want?” Jungkook interrupts, words sharp like daggers, snapping off from his teeth. “What are you talking to my girlfriend for, huh? Interested in sharing maybe?”
Jungkook doesn’t put an arm around your waist or pull you close to him. You think he would, expect him to, but all he does is stand close enough to you to not raise any suspicion. You wouldn’t mind if he did, but you appreciate him making an effort to respect your boundaries even in this situation. 
“I was just trying to be nice,” the guy mumbles, disgruntled and annoyed. “No fucking need to get all defensive and shit.”
Jungkook quirks a brow at his attitude. He tongues his cheek. His features darken. 
“I’m sorry, what did you just say?” he spits and you think you hear a growl too. The smile stays on his lips, and you think that makes him even more intimidating than if he had just dropped it.
You find absolutely zero traces of awkwardness in Jungkook’s words. It’s like he’s unlocked another version of himself, a confident and confrontational one. You’re in awe, to say the least.
“Who are you calling defensive? You’re the one that just dared to bother my girl,” Jungkook hisses like a snake, on the edge of attack, his eyes fixed on him. You don’t think anyone has ever called you their girl before. It has your heart rumbling in your chest.
“Look, I was just-”
“Trying to be nice?” Jungkook scoffs and clicks his tongue. “Go be nice somewhere fucking else.”
The guy looks ready to protest, nostrils flared and chest heaving with deep breaths, but when Jungkook takes one step closer to him and levels him with a glare that would have hell freeze over, he backs away. Of course, not without hissing something about Jungkook being unreasonably hostile and him just wanting to be nice. Jungkook doesn’t jump on it. He just drills his eyes into the guy’s back until he’s out of sight. And the moment he’s out of sight and earshot, Jungkook relaxes and backs off from you, stepping out of your personal space.
“You alright?” 
You almost get whiplash by how quickly his demeanour changes. It’s like a whole new person is standing in front of you.
“Uh, y-yeah,” you stammer dumbly, unable to quite wrap your head around what just happened. “I’m alright. Yeah, uh, thanks.”
“You don’t gotta thank me,” he tells you and rubs the back of his neck, looking shy, and you don’t know how to make do with the different versions of Jungkook presented to you right now. You’re fascinated by how he seamlessly shifts between being both awkward and confident. It should be impossible, but he does it, somehow.
“You wanna get those, uh, chips?” he coughs and takes them from you before you can answer. You don’t, but you don’t find it in you to tell him that. You follow him to the checkout counter.
The clerk comes out from the back and silently rings you up. You’re about to pull out your wallet when Jungkook beats you to it and puts a five-dollar on the counter and slides it over.
“Wait, no, let me-”
“It’s fine,” he tells you, waving you off. The clerk takes the money before you can tell him not to, and you’re left to put away your wallet.
“I’ll pay you back,” you say, and Jungkook shakes his head and gives you the bag of chips. He’s about to repeat himself, but he stops when he sees the guy from before. 
You thought he would leave the store, but you guess you shouldn’t have had any expectations for someone like him. Your face sours when you realise he’s standing right between you and the exit. 
Before you can think of ways to avoid him, Jungkook takes your hands into his, fingers perfectly slotting with yours. You look down, the sight making your stomach twist in your stomach—his tattooed hand cupping yours.
“Let’s go.” He gives you a smile over the shoulder. And somehow, that gives you the confidence to walk past the guy from before with your head held high.
By the time you’re back in the car, you’re smiling.
“Thank you,” you tell him again, and Jungkook waves you off.
You put the chips to the other snacks in the back and pull the seatbelt across your chest. “He looked so scared of you.”
“As he should be,” Jungkook laughs and you hum. He slots the keys into the ignition, seatbelt strapped in place. 
“Can’t believe you just did that,” you mumble when you pull out of the gas station, spotting the guy walking out of the store from the corner of your eye.
Jungkook laughs again. “Sorry if I made you, uh, uncomfortable by the way,” he mumbles, and you sit up.
“What? No, you didn’t!” you quickly assure him. “Don’t worry.”
“Yeah?” He chuckles. “Just, uh, so you know I didn’t step in because I thought you couldn’t handle yourself or anything, but I just,” he avoids your gaze, “couldn’t help myself. He was being so aggressive and pushy- I just had to step in, you know? He triggered something in me- I don’t know.”
You smile. “It’s fine.”
Jungkook glances your way as if to make sure you weren’t lying to him. He smiles when he sees no trace of deception in your eyes.
You let a beat pass. “I do have to say,” Jungkook stares at you with big eyes, clearly expecting the worst, “I was surprised by your… confidence.”
“Oh.” And then he laughs, hiding half of his face in his hand. “Yeah, uh- I-I can’t explain it either.” 
He clears his throat, and you let him take his time to find the words. Jungkook sighs at his inability to form a sentence. 
Finally, “I’m sorry for being so awkward,” he looks your way for a split second before focusing on the road again, grip tightening around the steering wheel. He clears his throat one more time. “I just-I just don’t wanna mess this up, you know? You’re Soo’s best friend and she’s dating Joon- and I know she means everything to him, so I don’t want to make a bad impression as his best friend, you know?”
You learn once he starts, Jungkook doesn’t stop, words spilling from his lips in an endless stream.
“I’ve been told I give off a rather unfriendly and rude vibe too. Like I know how shitty I must have looked when I, uh, didn’t help you with your suitcase, and when I kinda insulted you before- also, actually, the snacks I bought earlier?” He gestures behind him. “They were meant to be for you too. For some reason, I just... couldn’t offer them to you?” He shakes his head. “You must think I’m a douche.”
Jungkook looks at you then, and you would have made fun of him then if you were closer and if he hadn’t just heroically saved you from a creep. A smile finds a place on your face, one that bothers on a grin.
“I mean, yeah,” you tell him but are quick to cut back in when you see the mortification set in with him. “I mean, no. I’ve figured you’re kinda awkward. I mean everybody is, right? Some more than others, I guess.”
You realise what you’ve done a second too late. You should feel sorry, incredibly remorseful, but instead, you have to laugh. The face Jungkook pulls amuses you in ways it probably shouldn’t. You’re definitely going to hell.
“No, wait, I didn’t mean it like that,” you say but the laugh that accompanies your words makes it certainly hard to believe you. “Sorry, I just can’t help myself. I swear I don’t mean it like that.”
Jungkook gives you an unimpressed look. 
You gather yourself, but the smile doesn’t disappear completely off your lips. “Okay, look, it’s fine. Now that you’ve explained it, I get it. You’ve got nothing to worry about!”
Jungkook presses his mouth into a line. “So you’re not gonna tell Soo I suck?”
You don’t try to bite away the smile. “No.” He lets out a relieved sigh. “I’m just gonna tell her you’re a douche.”
And for a second, Jungkook believes you, his doe eyes meeting yours. You laugh. He doesn’t join you. He does roll his eyes. It does nothing to lessen your laugh, to his dismay.
“I’m kidding,” you say, just to make sure he won’t get any wrong ideas. “You’re fine. Just… relax. No need to be awkward.”
Jungkook huffs, but there’s a smile on his lips. “I’ll try.”
And when you go back to silence, the air feels much lighter than before.
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You switch after a quick stop at McDonald’s for a cheap and greasy lunch. It sits heavy in your stomach, but you don’t have the courage to suggest walking it off. So you get back in the car.
“Can I skip this song?” you ask because you’re the driver and the song makes it hard for you to concentrate. It’s awful. You hate it. You don’t tell him that though.
“Yeah, of course,” Jungkook tells you and skips to the next song. You don’t like this one either, but you don’t say anything. “You can put on your music too if you want, you know?”
“It’s fine. Your music is good.” And you can’t help but quietly add. “Most of the time.”
Jungkook gawks at you then. You have to laugh. “Sorry, I’m just joking.”
“No, no, actually-” He doesn’t finish his sentence and pauses the song. “How about we make a playlist together? Since we’re gonna be stuck in the car for a while, let’s try to make it as enjoyable as possible.”
“Oh, that sounds fun,” you say, really liking the suggestion, and Jungkook’s quick to open Spotify and create a new playlist, sending you the link to it too.
“‘Y/N’s and Jungkook’s Ultimate Summer Roadtrip Soundtrack’,” he says. “What do you think?”
You smile. “Great name.”
“Great.” He grins. “And obviously, the first song has to be ‘Midsummer Madness’ by 88rising, right?” 
You actually agree. The song belongs on every summer playlist.
“Add Jeremy Zucker to it too. ‘supercuts’ and ‘all the kids are depressed’,” you tell him.
Jungkook hums and does as you say. “‘Indigo’ by Niki and ‘100 Degrees’ by Rich Brian, yeah?”
You laugh. “You really like 88rising, don’t you?”
“You don’t?” he shots back, and you roll your eyes. Of course, you do.
“‘Everybody Talks!’ and ‘Animal’ by Neon Trees.”
“Bringing back the 2010s, huh?” Jungkook hums. “‘Sunday Best’ by Surfaces?”
“I don’t think I know this one,” you tell him, and he gasps at you, shaking his head and typing into his phone. A second later, the song plays over the stereo, and instantly, you see his point. “Okay, yeah, add this one.”
“How about ‘Electric Love’?”
You’re more than quick to agree. “Oh, that one for sure.”
“Okay, great,” he hums, and counts the number of songs under his breath. “Nine songs. That’s enough for now, right? We can add to it later.”
You nod. “Now, put it on.”
“Yes, Ma’am.” He adds a salute too, and you roll your eyes.
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By the time you get to the hotel, it’s late, the sun is long gone. You shut off the engine with a sigh, ready to collapse on a bed.
“Oh, we made it,” Jungkook groans, rubbing his eyes and stretching in his seat. You hum, too tired to speak. “Thank god. I’m done.”
You stretch too, your back cracking like a glowstick, and click off your seatbelt. But your seatbelt clearly doesn’t want you to leave, staying put even when you repeatedly press the button to unlock it.
“Wait, let me,” Jungkook says when he notices you struggling. 
He moves to help you. And right then, your hands brush. It’s stupid, really stupid, but you feel heat crawl up your neck, reaching the tips of your ears, rivalling the warmth of the summer. You even freeze for a second. When you thaw back to life, you flinch and turn your head to the side, screwing your eyes shut as if doing so would change anything.
Jungkook clears his throat awkwardly, and you’re grateful he keeps his gaze trained downwards. You’re certain you would have died of embarrassment if he had looked at you. 
“This seatbelt- it’s a bit, uh, tricky” He fumbles with it as he explains. “You gotta—” He speaks through pauses, voice strained. “—really push it down and-”
It clicks off.
And even though it wasn’t too tight before, you can breathe much better now. Maybe it was the seatbelt and you, somehow, didn’t notice all this time, or maybe it was because breathing got a little difficult when Jungkook was so close to you. But you’re convinced it’s not that. Sure, could you count all of his long eyelashes (which, might you add, are also unfailingly naturally curled too)? Yeah, but that’s not the reason why you feel so relieved. It’s because the seatbelt was digging into your ribs the entire time. It had to be. 
“Thanks,” you cough out and avert your eyes, looking out the window to the hotel. “Let’s, uh, check in, yeah?”
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The thing about being four broke college students that are hellbent on going on a cross country roadtrip is you’re willing to cut corners at any point. And one of them is your accommodation. Four people means four hotel rooms. That’s not in your budget, not even when you take three rooms instead of four (with Sooyoung and Namjoon being a couple and whatnot). Two would be in your budget if you weren’t such ambitious shits and insisting on going cross country, meaning you’d need to stay in hotels at least a couple of times throughout the trip. So in the end, you settled for one room. 
One room for four people. 
Well, now it’s just two people.
“Oh,” you say when you walk in, stopping dead in your tracks, the key card still sitting in the lock, hand hovering over the light switch. Jungkook almost bumps into you when you abruptly stop.
“What?” he asks, and you will yourself to respond, but your throat is dry all of a sudden, so you step to the side.
You glance in Jungkook’s direction, curious to see his reaction. He doesn’t react much at all, his lips parting only the tiniest bit as he sees what you did when you walked in. 
“Uh, didn’t we ask for two beds?” he asks, a knit between his brows.
“We did,” you say, frantically scanning the room. Maybe you overlooked the second bed. Maybe there’s one and it will magically appear if you look around once more-
You stop. There’s only one bed.
“They must have forgotten, I guess,” you mumble and take a few steps inside, still holding out hope that maybe just maybe there’s a second bed somewhere. It’s foolish and naive, you know.
“I could go ask if they’ve got another room,” Jungkook proposes, putting down his huge travel bag by the door.
“You wouldn’t mind?”
“I’ll be back in two.”
“Don’t forget the key card,” you remind him on his way out, and he gives you a smile before grabbing it and shutting the door. You sigh and wander over to the bed, carefully sitting down on it like it was made of glass. It is big enough for the both of you, but there’s no way you’re sleeping in it together.
You feel the duvet. It’s softer than you expected it to be, with how cheap this room was. You scan the room one more time before finally letting yourself fall back. For a moment, you lay there in silence before pulling out your phone and checking it for the first time in hours.
Two missed calls from your mother, alongside a handful of texts. You call her back, already knowing what’s about to follow. You hold your phone to your ear. She picks up after just a ring. She’s been waiting.
“Hey, mom.”
“Honey! Are you alright? You didn’t answer my calls and texts!” There’s obvious worry laced with her words. You swallow. Maybe you should reconsider and not keep your phone on silent, at least for the duration of the trip.
“Yeah, I’m sorry. I’m alright,” you tell her. “I was driving, so I wasn’t on my phone. We just checked in.”
“Oh, well, how’s the trip? Are you having fun?”
You close your eyes and hum. “It’s fun, but I’m also tired.”
“I can imagine. Driving so long isn’t good for your health. You sound very tired,” your mother says, and you think she’s going to launch into the speech she gave you when you first mentioned to her you’ll be going on a roadtrip. She doesn’t though, thankfully. You’re too tired for this. 
“But you know that already. At least, you’re having fun, right?” She only continues when you hum. “Well, how’s Soo?”
You peel your eyes open and grip your phone a little tighter. “Great,” you lie, knowing better than to tell the woman who sat in the kitchen in the darkness, waiting for you to come home after Sooyoung fucked up covering for you, that you were on a roadtrip with a complete stranger, a guy on top of that too.
“Is she doing well? Are you two eating well? What did you have for lunch? Dinner?” your mother asks.
“Uh, we stopped by McDonald’s,” you tell her, and you cringe at how reedy your voice sounds.
Your mother immediately makes a disapproving noise, of course. “For lunch and dinner? You should get something proper. Don’t eat too much McDonald’s. That’s not good for you.”
“Noted.” You decide to keep your answers short, and you hope your mother chalks it up to you being exhausted rather than you trying to hide something from her. 
“And how is it with the two guys? What were their names again? Namjoon and-?”
“Jungkook,” you supply with a cough.
“Ah yes, right, Jungkook. Are they trustworthy?”
“Yes, of course, mom,” you quickly assure, chuckling but it sounds wrong. “You’ve got nothing to worry about. They’re really nice.”
Your mother hums. “Well-”
It’s then that you hear the sound of the key card being inserted into the lock. You shoot up. 
“Uh, mom, I gotta go,” you tell her, the words stumbling from your lips clumsily. 
“What’s the hurry? I thought you were in the hotel-”
“Well—” You lock eyes with Jungkook and you’re quick to gesture for him to not say a word, panic in your eyes. “—uh, Soo just called for me. She needs my, uh, help.”
“Oh, in that case... go help her,” your mother says, and you think you can hear suspicion in her voice. You cringe. She knows something’s up. Why can’t you be a better liar?
“Yeah, I’m gonna do that,” you mumble, and Jungkook slowly closes the door. “I’ll talk to you later.”
And then, you end the call. You breathe out.
“My mom,” you say and throw your phone on the bed. “So? What did they say?”
Jungkook looks confused, taking a moment to connect the dots. “Right, uh, yeah, well they told me we didn’t actually book a room with two beds. Only one with one bed.”
You stare at him. “Oh.”
So you fucked up the reservations, huh? 
“Anyway, I asked if we could maybe switch, but they said,” he rubs his neck and averts his gaze then, “that they didn’t have any other rooms left.”
“Oh,” you repeat and sink back down on the bed. Jungkook leans against the closed door, staring at his shoes. “No rooms?”
“No rooms,” he confirms.
You press your lips into a thin line and search your brain for a solution. But you come up empty. Sooyoung has always been better than you at this. You’ve relied on her for problem-solving since middle school, so that part of your brain is rusty, to say the least. It doesn’t help you’re tired too.
“I could just sleep on the couch.” 
You jerk your head up, and follow Jungkook’s gaze, to the shabby little grey thing you don’t think classified as a couch.
“What? No!” you exclaim and shake your head. “That’s too small.”
“It’s fine,” he says, and you frown at him.
“It looks like it’s about to fall apart.”
“It doesn’t.”
You level Jungkook with a hard gaze. He doesn’t cave, to your dismay. You sigh.
“Fine,” he perks up, “I’ll sleep on it.”
“No- what? I’m gonna sleep on it!”
“No, sorry, I am,” you tell him. “Look, my phone’s already on it.”
He frowns. “It’s not.”
“Now, it is.” You’re just about to toss your phone on the couch when Jungkook beats you to it, throwing his gigantic travel bag across the room. You watch as it slowly tumbles from the couch to the floor.
“Sorry, my bag is on it.” Jungkook points at it like it didn’t just fall to the floor.
“It’s not.” And at your words he quickly rushes over and places his bag on top of the couch before sitting down himself. You stare at him. 
“Yes, yes, it is.” He smiles.
You grit your teeth. “You’re not gonna sleep well on that thing. I slept in the car a bit, so it doesn’t matter if I don’t sleep well now. Plus, I’m the one that fucked up the reservations, so I should be the one sleeping on the couch for it.”
Jungkook hums as if he’s considering your words, but then he clicks his tongue and pats the couch. “I think I’m gonna sleep just fine on this thing.”
“Stop lying-”
“Someone’s calling you.” He points to your phone in your hand, the screen lit up with a call.
You look at it.
You contemplate not taking it to continue this argument, but before you can make a decision, Jungkook does it for you. “Go take it. We’ll continue after.”
So even though you’re more than unhappy about this interruption, you do as he says, accepting the call and pressing your phone to your ear. Jungkook gestures over to what you assume must be the bathroom. You don’t bother locking the door when you walk inside. 
“Oh, so you’ve finally unblocked me, huh?” you hiss and blink a couple of times, the fluorescent lights of the bathroom far too bright. It strains your eyes.
“Look, I had to,” Sooyoung says. “You were being a bad passenger and texting me when you should have been talking to Kook!”
You roll your eyes. “You left me hanging, again. I needed you, you know?”
“Oh, please.” You know exactly what look she has on her face right now. It’s the one where she thinks you’re being dramatic. “You survived, didn’t you?”
“Barely,” you spit. “A creepy guy approached me and wouldn’t leave me alone.”
“What? Are you alright, Y/N?” Sooyoung quickly asks, voice dripping with a mix of worry and exasperation. 
“Yeah, yeah,” you assure her, looking at yourself in the mirror and brushing through your hair with your fingers. “Jungkook came and did the entire ‘why are you talking to my girlfriend?’ shtick.”
“So, you’re alright?” 
You hum.
Sooyoung waits a moment. “So, Kook saved you?”
You practically hear the smirk in her words. You groan. “You’re so annoying, you know?”
She cackles.
“Seriously, Soo, shut up,” you hiss, deciding to change the topic. “Are you guys still stuck?”
“Yeah, the railway companies are on strike until tomorrow morning. We’ll be back in town in the early afternoon. But that’s not important. What’s important is how it’s going with Kook and you. Is he still being awkward?”
You press your lips together. “I mean, no? It’s not as bad as I thought it’d be, but still... I’d much rather have you here too. I really wanted to go with you. It would have been so much fun.”
“I know. I’m sorry, Y/N,” Sooyoung mumbles, and you’re both quiet. She’s about to cry. You can hear it in her voice. You know she must be wracked with guilt, so in an effort to spare the tears, you change the topic, “Oh, by the way, officially, you’re still on the trip with me. I didn’t tell my mom.”
She chuckles then, but it doesn’t sound all that real. “Alright, I’ll cover for you.”
“Do it properly though this time. I swear to God, if you fuck this up again, we’re done,” you joke and elicit another chuckle. It sounds more genuine, but it’s still not quite there. You sigh and tell her something you know will definitely take her mind off things.
“Did I tell you? I fucked up the reservations.”
There’s a pause. 
“What? How? Are you roomless?”
“Worse,” you tell her. “There’s only one bed and the hotel is booked out.” 
For a moment, Sooyoung doesn’t say anything until she bursts out into laughter, prompting a ‘What’s so funny?’ from Namjoon. 
“Holy shit, Y/N! You’re joking, right?” You screw your eyes shut. At least she doesn’t sound like crying anymore. “What in the Wattpad fanfiction is this?”
“Stop fucking laughing, Soo. I’m miserable, alright?”
Your embarrassment triples when you listen to Sooyoung explain the situation to Namjoon. 
“Soo!” you hiss. 
“Sorry, sorry.” She’s still laughing though. Sometimes you wish your rivalry in middle school never stopped. “I’m just- this is just so funny. So what? You guys gonna sleep in the same bed?”
You hate the teasing tone swinging with her words, hate it so much you’re ready to just end the call then and there.
“You’re being a bad friend, you know?” you press through gritted teeth. “But no, we’re obviously not sleeping in the same fucking bed.” You make an effort to keep your voice low, aware that Jungkook’s just outside, sitting on the couch. You doubt the door is soundproof. “That’d be so weird.”
“Why not? I think that’d be a great bonding activity.”
You pause and if she was in front of you, you’d stare daggers into her. Your lips press into a line.
“Soo,” you begin, low and threatening, almost like how Jungkook spoke to the guy at the rest stop, “are you telling me to sleep with Jungkook?”
Sooyoung waits a moment, the silence that stretches between you feeling like forever. And then, “Hey, babe, Kook’s single, right?”
You faintly hear Namjoon's affirmative answer, followed by a confused ‘Why?’, and you think you’re ready to break off your friendship with Sooyoung.
“I fucking hate you,” you whisper, eliciting another round of obnoxious laughter. 
“Look, I actually didn’t mean that,” Sooyoung tells you when she’s finally calmed down. “I was strictly speaking about actual bonding, as in friendship, you know? You’re the one that went there!”
“You said ‘bonding activity’!” you exclaim, clamming your hand in front of your mouth when you raise your voice a bit too much. You look at the door, listening to any sounds from the other side, but luckily, it stays quiet. 
You lower your voice into a hiss. “Don’t blame me for going there! You worded it weirdly.”
“Ah, so it’s never your fault, is it? Just accept it, you’ve got a dirty mind-”
“I’m hanging up. Goodbye.”
And without hesitating, you end the call, watching as your screen darkens. You sigh and run a hand through your hair, shaking your head and her words out of your mind. Sooyoung’s stupid and absolutely wrong. 
With that conclusion, you take one deep breath, making sure to compose yourself before heading out. One look into the mirror, you realise the frown plaguing your features has deepened. You smooth it over as much as possible.
When you walk out, you’re ready to pick up right where you left off, but instead of seeing Jungkook sitting on the couch, you find him curled up on it, knees uncomfortably tucked to his chest, a pillow under his head and a blanket thrown over him. You don’t know where he got both of those things from as the bed is still untouched. His travel bag sits on the floor next to him. 
Jungkook’s sleeping.
Or well, he’s pretending to be asleep. It’s obvious he’s faking it with how stiff he’s lying on the couch. 
“Seriously?” you mutter under your breath and throw your hands into the air. “What happened to talking about it after?”
No response. 
You walk over to him, expecting Jungkook to open his eyes at one point. You know he can feel your gaze on him. There’s no way he isn’t. You’re practically digging daggers into him.
“I know you’re faking,” you say, but again, no response. You contemplate pulling off the pillow and blanket, but you can’t bring yourself to even lift your hand. 
With Sooyoung, you wouldn’t hesitate at all, but with Jungkook, you’re still careful. Because even though you just spent the day getting comfortable with each other, you’re scared you might cross a line and catapult you back to your starting point. You definitely do not want to be the reason for that. 
So you don’t try anything. 
You heave out one heavy sigh. 
“Jungkook, you said we were gonna talk,” you mumble, tired and disappointed. “You’re not being fair.”
You think you see the slightest twitch in his face, the tiniest knit between his brows like he’s contemplating maybe opening his eyes. But then, it’s gone, the lines smoothed over and you know you’re not getting him to drop his act. 
Admitting defeat, you wander over to your suitcase and open it, grabbing your toiletry bag and a change of clothes. 
“Just gonna say you’re gross for not brushing your teeth. They are gonna fall out, you know?” 
You wait for a reaction, but of course, you don’t get one. You roll your eyes and walk into the bathroom, shutting the door with more force than necessary.
Getting into bed feels weird. You’ve never liked sleeping in a bed beside your own, but you especially don’t like it when you see Jungkook curled up in that same uncomfortable and stiff position as before. You want to say something, but you know it’s in vain. So you turn off the lights and crawl under the covers.
You close your eyes, trying to sleep for a few minutes before giving up, eyes peeling open. And it’s not because it feels strange sleeping in a foreign bed. It’s because there’s a coil in your stomach, brewing and stewing in there. 
A coil of guilt.
Taking a deep breath, you throw the covers off you and swing your legs over the mattress. You’re determined as you walk over to Jungkook. 
“Get up,” you say with confidence you don’t know where you got from. “Jungkook, stop pretending. I know you’re not sleeping”
You think it’s the annoyance in your voice, the strictness swinging with it because finally, Jungkook does as you say and peels his stupid doe eyes open. Your gazes meet. He looks sheepish, embarrassed almost, and you click your tongue.
“Come on,” you say and grab his blanket. “You’re not sleeping on the couch.”
“It’s fine,” Jungkook repeats, pulling back the blanket. “Seriously, the couch is comfortable-”
“Oh, shut up,” you groan and throw your head into your neck. “You’re not sleeping on the couch, okay? You’re almost falling off this thing! Look at yourself, curled up like a goddamn shrimp. How are you gonna sleep like that?”
Jungkook opens his mouth but falls short. 
“See!” you laugh because this is so stupid, and he looks away, defeated.
You take a deep breath before continuing, knowing once you say this, you can’t take it back. 
“Just come sleep in the goddamn bed with me.”
Before Jungkook can even begin to comprehend your words, you grab his blanket and walk over to the bed. You throw the blanket on it.
“Uh,” confusion and uncertainty swing with his voice, “both of us? In the same bed?”
You can feel heat crawl up your neck at his question. You blame him for it, for the way he words it. It’s weird, sounds wrong. 
“Don’t make this weird. I’m just saying- there’s enough space, right?” You gesture at the bed. “And I-” You pause for a moment. “We’ll use your pillow as a barrier.” 
Even though you try your hardest to sound confident and not let any of the embarrassment leak through, you can hear the quiver in your voice. You hope Jungkook doesn’t. 
When you look at him again, he’s still staring at you, sitting up now though.
“I mean if you don’t wanna,” you’re starting to lose all of the courage you had before, “that’s fine too. I just thought that since, you know, the couch-”
“No, no, no,” he interrupts and grabs his pillow, standing up, “I’m just-” 
Jungkook pauses. A smile finds his lips. You lock eyes.
“If you’re comfortable with it, I’m too.”
You don’t think you’ve seen Jungkook look at you like this before, quite frankly you don’t think anyone has ever looked at you like this. There’s so much sincerity and honesty in his eyes. You can’t handle it. You avert your eyes.
“Yeah, uh, I’m fine with it,” you cough, and wave him off. “Just, you know, a barrier.”
He places the pillow right in the middle. “Good?” 
You nod before crawling under the covers. For some reason, breathing gets a bit harder as you do.
“Uh.” You snap your gaze to Jungkook at his interruption, eyes big when you look at him. “I think I’m gonna go wash up and change,” he tells you, gesturing at himself, still in his clothes from today. 
“Oh, yeah, of course,” you say. “Go do that.”
“Wouldn’t want my teeth to fall out, would I?” he smiles, and you roll your eyes at him. You don’t think he can see it in the darkness, but then you spot a grin on his lips.
“Just go.” You wave him off.
The fluorescent lights of the bathroom spill into the room through the crack under the door, and in the darkness, they seem especially bright and straining. You close your eyes.
“Ah, shit,” you hear Jungkook curse, followed by the faint sound of his toiletry bag dropping to the floor, and then, the calm sound of running water. Usually, you would slowly fall asleep, the sounds serving as white noise, but you can’t. Not when the realisation dawns on you Jungkook must have heard everything before. 
You figured the door wasn’t soundproof, but you didn’t expect it to be this thin. Jungkook heard everything. You’re sure of it. Before you were embarrassed. Now, you’re mortified.
You dig the heels of your hands into your eyes and bite your lip, stopping yourself from groaning.
By the time Jungkook comes back, you’ve decided to go with his tactic of pretending to be asleep. Unlike him, you’re actually able to put on a pretty good act. Your acting abilities are confirmed when you hear him stop dead in the tracks.
It’s quiet, barely audible, not louder than a slight puff of air, but you hear it loud and clear. Your senses are heightened and focused solely on every sound Jungkook makes. His steps are feather-light, making it difficult for you to follow where he is in the room, but when you feel the mattress dip, you know.
Jungkook moves slowly, not wanting to wake you. You almost smile at his carefulness. Sooyoung would never act like this. (In fact, she would probably bang on doors and turn on the lights just to wake you up and complain to you about how you fell asleep too quickly.) 
Like it weighs a ton, Jungkook slowly lifts the blanket. You want to tell him to hurry and get into bed, but you bite your tongue, letting him do his thing. This must be a world record for the longest time to get into bed, you think.
When he’s finally lying next to you, Jungkook lets out a sigh. You can feel his presence beside you, his body pressing into the pillow. It’s hard not to notice. 
Nothing happens for a few minutes, and you wonder if you could peel your eyes open and take a peek, see his back turned to you. Just as you’re about to though,
“Goodnight, Y/N.”
And then, you feel Jungkook tug the blanket closer to your chin, covering you up even more. Heat crawls up your cheeks. You decide to keep your eyes closed.
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Your mouth drops open when you see Jungkook’s plate, a marvellous stack of golden brown pancakes with the perfect slap of butter on top and a tiny bowl filled with brown sugary sweet maple syrup. Your bun with jam looks incredibly sad and plain in comparison, unappetising even. When you walked along the buffet, you didn’t see pancakes. How did you miss them?
“You wanna try?” Jungkook asks you, scooting closer with his chair and pointing at his pancakes. You tear your gaze to him.
“No, it’s fine.” 
“You sure?”
He levels you with a serious gaze, and you know he’s not just offering you out of politeness. “Yeah, just eat.”
You try not to look at Jungkook’s plate, eyes focusing on your cup of coffee, but you can’t help but take a peek when he pours the maple syrup on top. It’s illegal how good it looks. He catches you staring. Your eyes grow big before you bring yourself to look away, pretending like you’ve got a piece of lint stuck to your pants.
You bring your cup of coffee to your lips and take a sip. It’s in that moment when Jungkook transfers half of his stack of pancakes onto your plate. You start choking.
“Jungkook!” you exclaim, causing other guests to look your way, but you can’t be bothered to give them an apologetic smile. “What are you doing?”
“Just eat,” he tells you and picks up his fork and knife, slicing into his remaining pancakes. You shake your head and quickly put down your cup to give him his food back, but,
“Y/N, don’t you dare. I gave it to you. It’s a gift. You can’t refuse a gift.”
You gawk at him. 
“Jungkook,” you start, but he waves you off again, shoving the bite into his mouth. “It’s your food.”
“Not anymore,” he tells you, mouth still half full, and you think you would have cringed if he hadn’t just given you half of his stacks of pancakes. “It’s really good.” He points at his plate. “You should try.”
Admitting defeat, you heave out a sigh and tear your bun in half, placing it on his plate.
“It’s a gift,” you repeat. “You can’t refuse a gift.”
Jungkook stares at you then before smiling and shaking his head. 
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He’s inside, handling the checking out, when you realise you’re inherently weak. What other conclusion are you supposed to come to when you can't lift your suitcase into the trunk?
You groan as you try once more, propping up your leg to use as leverage, but it’s not enough. Your stance is weak, and you start toppling. Just before this can end badly, with your butt on the concrete and your suitcase on the floor, your knight in shining armour makes a second appearance. 
Jungkook places one hand behind your back, steadying you, and takes your suitcase from you with the other. Like it weighs nothing, he puts it in the trunk. A part of you is offended by how easy he makes it look.
“You alright?” He turns to you, giving you a worried look. You wave him off, feeling vaguely out of breath. Whether it’s due to you straining to get your suitcase in, or the fact Jungkook still has his hand on your back, you don’t know and also don’t want to know.
“I’m fine,” you huff in the end, and his touch leaves you. “Thanks.”
“Of course.”
“Honestly thought you were gonna watch me in the rearview mirror again,” you mumble, and his hands still around the hatchback, gaze finding yours. You crack a smile. “I’m joking. I know you’re not a douche.”
He rolls his eyes at you, but there’s a smile on his lips as he does. You fish the keys out of your pocket.
“Ready for another day of driving?”
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You’ve been on the road for almost three hours when you decide to make a stop, Jungkook needing to use the restroom.
“I’ll be quick,” he says and is already halfway out of the car but stops when he sees you fumble with your seatbelt.
“I’m getting out too,” you tell him when you notice his look. “My legs are sore. But you can go first. I know you gotta pee.”
“Oh, no, I can wait.”
You don’t respond, far too busy with the seatbelt. Maybe you should not get out. Maybe that’s your sign that staying in the car would be better. But, like all of the times before, Jungkook’s here for your rescue.
“Can I-?”
This time you make sure to pull your hands away fast enough, but you still don’t dare to look as he works on the seatbelt, cheeks ablaze for some reason. Deep down, you know. It’s the proximity. It’s the fact that you can see every mole speckling his skin, the fact that you can cup his cheeks, lift his face to you and push your lips against his-
Oh, God.
It’s the lack of sleep. It’s definitely the lack of sleep.
You close your eyes and bite your tongue, focusing on thinking about anything but how close Jungkook is to you.
You only open your eyes when you hear the click of your seatbelt. Jungkook leans back, and you start to breathe again.
“What would you do without me?” he asks, grinning, and you don’t meet his gaze.
“Probably be stuck in the car forever,” you say, swallowing thickly, the words coming out breathlessly.
He grins, picking up on none of that. “Probably.”
The moment your feet hit the concrete, you sigh, in need of some movement. Your mother’s right. Driving so long really is not good for your health.
Jungkook trails behind you as you walk into the little convenience store, your steps much more hurried than his. He almost bumps into you when you stop dead in your tracks. He’s about to ask you what’s wrong when he sees the other customers, all men, older men. It’s an intimidating sight. You swallow, reminded of yesterday.
“You alright?” Jungkook asks quietly, giving you a smile and stepping in front of you.
“Uh, y-yeah,” you say and clear your throat. “I mean yeah, I’m alright. It’s just-”
“You want to hold my hand?” 
The question catches you off guard. You look up to Jungkook. “W-what?”
“You know because-”
He doesn’t finish his sentence and just looks behind him. You don’t follow his gaze because you know what he’s saying. You take this short moment to admire his face, the softness of it.
“I mean you also don’t gotta,” he clears his throat. “Just so we can prevent yesterday from happening-”
Jungkook stops when you take his hands into yours, fingers slotting with his. He looks down before meeting your gaze, a smile spreading on his lips.
“Thanks,” you whisper into his arm, and he squeezes your hand.
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‘Everybody Talks’ by Neon Trees just finished playing when Jungkook turns his head to you, his phone in his hand.
“Joon texted they got back,” he tells you, and you hum. “Reminds me, you never told me why Joon and Soo were out of town.”
“Did I not say?” You pucker your forehead. “Well, you know how it’s Joon’s and Soo’s anniversary?” He nods. “Well, he decided to take out Soo for a romantic getaway.”
“Oh, that’s cute,” Jungkook says, and you wrinkle your nose.
“You mean gross.”
“You think so?”
“You don’t?” you shoot back and look at him, raising a brow. You focus on the road again. “Also, look how their romantic getaway turned out. They ended up missing the roadtrip, and now we’re stuck here.”
Jungkook eyes you, words clearly sitting on his tongue, but he swallows them. 
“I guess.”
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So far you haven’t hit traffic yet. So when you do after hours of travelling, you can’t even be pissed. You are, however, bored. 
Because there’s a sleeping Jungkook to your right, his arms crossed in front of his chest and his head stiffly pulled back. 
You keep yourself entertained by playing the playlist he and you created through your earbuds, quietly jamming to it until you run out of songs and start adding to it. 
You just added ‘warm’ by Junggigo and ‘Butterflies’ by Fiji Blue to the playlist when Jungkook shifts next to you. Your gaze lands on him, and you hold your breath as you watch him stir and stir until slowly, he peels his eyes open.
The first thing he does is groan.
“Ah, fuck.”
His voice is deeper than usual, thick with sleep, and his face contorts with pain. You know it’s his neck. Your assumption is confirmed when he holds it, rubbing it.
“Morning,” you greet him, quietly, earphones and phone landing in your lap. “You okay?”
Jungkook looks at you, putting on a smile.
“Hey, yeah, morning. I’m fine.” He’s definitely not. “I just slept weird.”
Jungkook rubs his eyes and stretches, groaning as he does. He blinks a couple of times, taking everything in.
“One and a half days, right?” he says, sighing. “I mean no traffic. That’s not too bad?”
You hum. “Yeah, guess we’re lucky we only hit traffic now.”
Jungkook exhales again, long and heavy, still somewhat drowsy, and looks out the window, taking in the beautiful blue sky.
“You wanna play a game?”
You turn to him at his sudden question. “A game?”
He smiles, wide awake now. “Yeah, to pass the time.”
You hum. “What game?”
“21 questions.”
“When you said play a game, you meant... ask me questions?” you say and smile when you see the look on his face.
“Well, it’s still a game-”
You give him a look, nose scrunching. “Sure,” you say. “Now hit me. What’s your question?”
“Okay, so,” a knit forms between Jungkook’s brows, “do you want to improve the world we live in?”
You still, and turn to Jungkook, your face twisting in confusion. “That’s your question? I thought 21 questions was meant to be casual, not deep.”
“Just answer the question, Y/N,” he says. “Or what? You’re too scared?”
You raise a brow. “Too scared? You think I’m too scared?” You laugh and shake your head. 
“Fine, yes, I do,” you sigh. “I do wanna improve the world. I mean obviously, right? The world is shit, so of course I wanna change it.” You pause. “Do I think I will? No. But would I like to? Sure.”
Jungkook smiles. “See! I feel like I know you much better already. Okay, what would-”
“What are you doing? What game is this when I’m the only one answering questions? This isn’t an interview, right?”
He sighs. “Fine, my answer’s the same-”
“You’re not answering the same question. That’s boring,” you say and click your tongue. “No, you’re gonna tell me—” You pause to think, a knit forming between your brows. You light up when you come up with something. “—what your biggest weakness is.”
“I thought this was not meant to be an interview?” 
“Just answer the question, Jungkook,” you parrot. “Or what? You’re too scared?”
And then he shakes his head before puckering his forehead in thought. “I suck at social interactions. Like, I’m awkward as shit.”
You click your tongue. “Doesn’t count.”
“What do you mean-”
“It means I already know that and these questions are supposed to get me to know you better. Think of another weakness.”
Jungkook grumbles but doesn’t protest it, pausing to think. “I can’t think of anything else right now-”
“Are you saying you’ve got no other weakness?” You drive up when the line moves. “Wow, that’s arrogant.”
“Fine, let me think.” He pauses, and you’re about to tell him it’s fine when he continues. “I guess I’m immature- well, immature isn’t the right word. I think I’m sometimes a bit... reckless.” He levels you with a look. “Good enough?”
You hum. “A great weakness. You’re hired.”
Jungkook grumbles. “Okay, now my turn. What would you change about yourself?”
“Change about myself?” you repeat under your breath, scrunching your nose as you think about it. 
“I mean I think I’d like to be more disciplined. Have more self-control, you know?” You press your mouth into a line. “I’m not a very confrontational person either. If I can, I will avoid uncomfortable situations at all cost, even if that means it inconveniences me.” You shrug. “I feel like there’s always something to change though, right? We could always work on ourselves and be a better and kinder version of ourselves, don’t you think?”
“Wow, you must be great at interviews,” he says, and you grin. “Your turn.”
You hum as you try to think of a question. “Tell me your greatest strength.”
“You know you’re asking awfully lot of interview questions for the fact that you teased me-”
“Just answer the question, Jungkook,” you repeat. “Or what? You’re too-”
“My greatest strength,” he interrupts loudly, and you grin, “is probably… my patience. Also, I feel like I’m pretty nice once you get to know me and get past all of the, you know, awkwardness.”
You let out a high pitched sound. “Don’t know if I’d agree.”
He snaps his head to you, eyes blown out, and the way he’s looking at you now reminds you of the way he stared at you when you told him Sooyoung and Namjoon weren’t coming. Once again, you’re convinced if you slap him on the back of his head, his eyes would fall out.
“I’m joking!”
Jungkook stares at you, face hard and serious. You know you should take him seriously, but all you can do is laugh when you look at him. 
“Stop teasing me!”
“It’s fun though,” you tell him, smiling. “Also you’re gullible. Another weakness.”
The groan that escapes him only makes your smile widen even more. 
“Whatever,” he mumbles and crosses his arms in front of his chest. You want to poke him in the cheek and tease him for being such a moody teenager, but you think that will earn you a glare.
“You still wanna play your little game?”
“I thought it wasn’t a game-”
“So you don’t.”
Your words have Jungkook snapping his head to you, and you can see the conflict in his eyes. On one hand, he wants to tease you. On the other hand, he does want to continue playing. At this point, you’re beaming.
“Just ask,” you say as a sort of peace offering, a silent promise you’ll stop teasing him so much (for now at least). And he takes it, somewhat reluctantly but definitely gladly.
“What’s your biggest regret?”
You pause, and almost forget to drive up when the line moves. Unlike with the previous questions, you think a lot longer about this one, a sight that makes Jungkook smile.
“Good question, isn’t it? Got no answer, do you?”
“Well, you tell me your biggest regret then.”
He tsks you. “This is your question. You gotta answer it, not me.”
You purse your lips and think. “Probably when I decided cutting my hair with a pair of blunt kitchen scissors was a good idea. You’ll find no pictures of me during junior year.”
“That’s your only regret?” He arches a brow. 
“I once touched the hot stovetop and burned myself pretty badly.”
“How old were you?”
“Six maybe?”
“That doesn’t count then,” he tells you, and as much as you want to protest, you know he’s right. Being a kid and doing stupid stuff is a given. It shouldn’t be a regret.
You sigh. 
The only other thing you can come up with is the time you decided to hook up with Jungkook. It’s not the act in itself was something you regretted, but it just feels weird for you to share such a history with him. It’s unlike you. You know in a separate universe he and you hooking up probably lead to something more, a relationship maybe, one that you grew happy being in. But this isn’t the universe in which you get together with Jungkook. It’s the one in which you have to anxiously sit next to him as you hope he’ll never remember you.
“Well, I have had too much and done some stupid stuff,” you tentatively begin, trying to be as vague as possible, not wanting to possibly jumpstart Jungkook’s memories.
You look out your window and press your hands into your thighs. “Like think I can dance or sing all of a sudden, or that texting my ex is a brilliant idea.”
“Feel like we’ve all done that.”
His eyes are on you. You can feel it, and you know he’s not letting this go until you give him something.
“Well, once I…. went home with this guy.” 
You instantly regret speaking. You don’t dare to look at Jungkook, far too scared that recognition might reflect in his eyes. You don’t know what you would do then.
“He was that bad, huh?” A laugh accompanies his question, and you try to mimic it, keeping the atmosphere light.
“I mean no, but it’s just… not like me at all, you know?” You gesture around yourself. “To hook up with people. Not something I’d do sober. It’s just… embarrassing. It has nothing to do with him, just- you know, me-”
Jungkook looks at you then, his mouth opening to say something, but you stop him, desperate to change the topic.
“Oh,” you pick up your phone, “right! I’ve, uh, added a couple of new songs to the playlist.”
He knows what you’re doing. Jungkook’s not stupid. But thankfully, he lets you off the hook.
“Put them on.”
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“I’m banning McDonald’s,” you say when you walk out of the third clown restaurant in less than two days. “I can’t do this again.”
Jungkook laughs next to you, still sipping on his coke. “Well, it does look like we’re gonna be at the hotel early. We can go look for a proper place to have dinner then.”
“Please,” you sigh and tuck a strand behind your ear when you feel a gust of wind. Your steps are exceptionally slow, stomach filled with a mediocre cheeseburger and greasy fries.
“Alright, we’ll do that then,” Jungkook hums. “Keys?”
You fish them out of your pocket and hand them to him. You’ve fallen into a routine. Around lunchtime, you switch. 
You perk up when you see Jungkook rub his neck, face twisted in pain. You’ve already noticed him rubbing his neck earlier when you were eating. 
“Hey,” he stops and looks at you, “I just remembered. I need something from the store.” You point at the little convenience store next to McDonald’s. “Go ahead. I’ll be right back.”
And before Jungkook can offer to go with you, you walk inside, hoping you’ll find what you’re looking for. They must have them here too, you think. It takes you a minute to find them, but when you do, you beam. But your smile is quickly replaced by a frown when you see the price. When you remember how he’s been rubbing and massaging his neck for the last hour, it disappears and you walk over to the checkout.
Jungkook replaced his coke for his phone when you come back, a frown etching into his face when he sees the plastic bag you’re holding.
“What did you-”
He stills when you pull it out. You hold it out to him.
“It’s for you.” 
You shove it into his hands.
“Y/N,” he begins, voice soft and quiet, face softening. “Why?”
“Because obviously, your neck is hurting. Now, try it out.”
Jungkook gives you a look before sighing and putting the neck pillow around his neck, leaning into it.
“And? You feel supported?”
He smiles. “Very.”
You ball up the plastic bag and throw it into the back. “Great.”
“How much was it? It must have been so expensive,” Jungkook says, and you roll your eyes. “I’ll pay you-”
“No, you’re not,” you say. 
“Just tell me how-”
He removes the neck pillow and levels you with a look. 
“Jungkook,” you repeat, not nearly as serious though. 
The corners of your lips quirk up when he heaves out a sigh. He closes his eyes. “You’re not gonna tell me, are you?”
“Of course not,” you grin and put on your seatbelt. “Now drive. I wanna have a proper dinner.”
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Even though you’ve never been to this city before, the park reminds you oddly enough of your local park. You think it’s the Magnolia trees.
Looking around, you’re glad Jungkook suggested you get takeout instead of sitting in the little dingy Chinese diner when your initial plans of going to the city’s best sushi place fell through. (They didn’t accept walk-ins.) As sad as it was (and it really was because Jungkook spent an hour comparing dozens of restaurants on Yelp and sacrificed a good chunk of his data), you’re happy you ended up in the park. Something about having dinner under the summer sky is just especially calming and beautiful, the warm sticky evening air blowing in your face. 
“I like it here,” you tell Jungkook, and he hums, mouth stuffed with fried rice.
“It’s nice,” he agrees with you, and you pick up your chopsticks again, shovelling your noodles into your mouth. “But the food…”
He trails off, and you almost start laughing. 
“Yeah, it’s not great,” you say and swallow. “The noodles are weirdly greasy.”
“Yeah, I can see.” Jungkook points at your oil-soaked paper container. “The rice is not good either. Too wet, and it has a weird aftertaste too.”
You hum. You did switch to noddles for a reason. 
“But,” you look at him, pulling up a chopstick full of noodles, “still better than McDonald’s.”
“That’s for sure, and,” he picks up a spring roll from your shared box sitting between you on the bank, “the spring rolls are actually really fucking good.”
You grab one for yourself. “Yeah, they got those right.” 
The sun isn’t setting just yet, but it is slowly losing its vibrancy, fading into the background. The light it does have left filters beautifully through the leaves and flowers of the Magnolia trees, creating soft and delicate shadows on the concrete that dance in rhythm with the wind. You sit right underneath a majestic Magnolia tree, and from your bench, you can see a small family of three having a nice little picnic on your left and a group of kids playing football on your right. You tuck your hair out of your face when a breeze blows past you. It’s not too hot or humid today.
It’s the perfect summer day.
And once again, you notice how fading and fleeting the warm months are, notice how it’s all slowly coming to a bittersweet ending, how this trip will be the thing defining your summer until next year. You smile at that thought. Oddly enough, you’re fine with that.
“It’s a really beautiful day though,” you mumble, and Jungkook looks over to you, mouth stuffed with fried rice. He pauses. “Makes up for the mediocre food.”
He sticks his chopsticks into the rice (something his mother would scold him for) and wipes his mouth. His eyes are on you, solely on you. You don’t notice. He smiles.
“Beautiful indeed.”
When you finish eating (and by finish you mean when neither of you can stomach any longer of the mediocre Chinese food without risking possibly getting food poisoning), the sun has slowly begun to set, golden hour coming to an end. The little family is long gone at this point, and the group of kids you watched a minute ago are nowhere to be seen either. 
You’re gathering up your leftovers, packing them all up and making sure to leave nothing behind, when Jungkook suddenly straightens up. You’re far too busy to notice it, and by the time you do, he’s already up and walking away, leaving you without an explanation.
The rest of your sentence gets lodged in your throat when he begins to run. You see it then. An ice cream truck. You hear it then too, the faint little tune coming from it. You spot the group of kids huddled around it, holding their wallets up in the air. That’s where they went, you think.
When Jungkook comes back, you’ve long finished packing everything up.
“Here,” he says, holding out a Spiderman shaped ice cream to you. “I mean unless you want Iron Man.”
You laugh and gladly accept Spiderman. “Thanks.”
“You’re welcome.”
“Are you gonna let me repay you?”
And when Jungkook just moves the plastic bags to the side and sits down next to you, you know the answer. 
Is it a good idea to eat ice cream so shortly after all of that Chinese food? Definitely not. Do either of you care? Not at all.
“You think they’re on a date?” you ask when you spot two teenagers by the ice cream truck. Even from afar, you can see their fidgeting. You smile, remembering how you used to be like that too. Sometimes still are even.
“Look at him,” Jungkook laughs, gesturing towards the boy. “They’re definitely on a date. You can see he wants to hold her hand.”
You hum and go back to eating.
“You think people think we’re dating when they look at us?”
You stop. For a moment, you don’t react at all until it hits you and you snap your gaze to Jungkook, eyes wide.
“W-what?” you sputter and almost choke.
Jungkook instantly begins to laugh, a gigantic smile growing on his lips. “What? Is it so bad if people might think that?” he asks, taking a bite from his ice cream, and you would have cringed and told him not to do that if your brain wasn’t reeling from his question.
“I- what? I-I don’t-”
You stop when he laughs even more, and soon enough your face twists in annoyance, nose scrunching. A pout grows on your lips and you avert your gaze, cheeks ablaze.
“It’s not funny,” you inform him, but Jungkook doesn’t agree, grinning at you. “But no, I don’t think so.” 
You still don’t look at him when you speak.
“Really?” There’s disbelief in his voice. “I mean I’m not trying to imply anything, but, you know, you and I are sitting on the bench together, eating ice cream and-”
“Sure, yeah, but this is also not a romcom in which we dance under the stars, go on coffee shop dates, and sneak out to meet in the middle of the night, Jungkook,” you interrupt, the words spilling from your lips quickly. “This is the 21st century. People no longer assume we’re dating because you’re a guy and I’m a girl and we’re having ice-”
“Didn’t you assume that they’re dating because they are a guy and girl getting ice cream?” Jungkook asks and points at the two teenagers. You still and press your mouth into a line.
His gaze lingers on you as he waits and waits for your defence. You can’t come up with anything though. So in a desperate attempt to save face, you get up and grab one of the plastic bags. 
“I’m tired,” you announce, voice thin and weak.
You know Jungkook’s smirking. You expect a comment, but nothing follows. He just gets up, grabs the other bag and happily takes another bite from his Iron Man ice cream as he catches up with you.
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This time you didn’t fuck up the reservations. This time there are two beds, so when you get back, there’s no discussion and fight about who takes the couch. This time you both just claim your beds.
Jungkook lets you have the bathroom first, and when you’re done, showered and washed up, you find him eating the rice from before.
“Thought it tasted off,” you say as you dry your hair with a towel, and he hums.
“It does,” he looks at you, “but it’s still food.”
You smile and sit down on the bed, pulling out your phone and checking your messages; assuring your mother you’re fine, making plans with Yeji and Sana to go shopping after the trip, and telling Sooyoung you’re back in the hotel.
“Gonna wash up,” Jungkook tells you, and you look up to find him no longer eating, everything packed up.
The call comes right when you hear the shower turn on.
“Y/N!” Sooyoung greets you, the smile audible in her voice.
“Hey,” you mumble and lie down, rubbing your eyes and suppressing a yawn. “What’s up?”
“Oh, I just wanted to check in with you.” You look over to the bathroom. The shower is still running. You have time. “How’s it with Kook?”
You press your lips together. “Fine.”
“See!” You have to hold your phone away from your ear, cringing at her volume. “I told you it wasn’t gonna be bad!”
“Yeah, whatever,” you mumble and sigh, closing your eyes as you feel the exhaustion taking over you more and more. 
“How did you solve the bed dilemma yesterday?”
“Soo,” you press through your teeth, hoping it’s enough for her to get the message.
“Oh, Y/N, just tell me! Did you guys sleep in one bed?”
You pinch your nose bridge and sigh. “Please, stop.”
“You gotta tell me! Don’t leave me hanging like that,” she tells you, and you want to groan, but refrain when you hear the shower stop.
“He took the couch, okay? Happy?” you hiss. It’s not a complete lie. Jungkook did take the couch, for around ten minutes.
“Oh, did he? How gentleman of Kook,” Sooyoung says, but you hear a smirk on her lips. You frown. “But,” your heart sinks in your chest, “Joon told me Kook told him you ended up sharing the bed.”
“I’m hanging up again,” you say and end the call early once more.
When Jungkook comes back, you’re already tucked in, phone charging on the nightstand and eyes squeezed shut. You hear him still at your sight before his footsteps resume again. 
There’s silence. 
Until there isn’t.
A thud.
You turn on the lamp, just to see Jungkook sitting on a sunken bed.
“Did you break-”
He presses his mouth into a thin line.
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Jungkook didn’t break the bed. The hotel staff informs you there’s a loose screw. It’s been fixed but needs fixing again. They apologise profusely.
You sigh when he finishes relaying all of the information. “So moving rooms, huh?”
“Yeah, uh, about that...” 
Jungkook gives you a look you can’t place, but when he picks up the bedding and throws it all on the couch, it dawns on you.
“Don’t tell me…” You don’t finish your sentence. “How?”
“I don’t know,” he shrugs. “Seems like a lot of people are going on roadtrips now.”
You bury your face in your hands. This feels like a fucking joke. Sooyoung’s right. What in the Wattpad fanfiction is this?
“Okay, but clearly I’m sleeping on the couch,” you say, and Jungkook’s quick to lie down before you can act.
“Look, Y/N, let’s not do this again. It’s my bed that broke, so I should sleep-”
“But your neck!”
And with that, Jungkook pulls the cover over his body and turns his back to you, letting out the most obnoxiously loud and fake snore. 
This time it’s not a full-size bed. This time it’s just a twin size bed. This time you still can’t let Jungkook sleep on that stupidly small couch, not with his neck pain for sure. (Why can’t hotels have decently sized couches?)
“You’re not gonna let me sleep on the couch, are you?” 
You get a loud snore in response. You heave out a sigh.
“Can I trust you?”
There’s no snoring this time. You think he knows where you’re going with this. You fumble with the covers, heart thumping in your chest.
“We can’t… put a barrier this time.”
And like he’s been stung, Jungkook sits up, his eyes wide as he looks at you. You look away, and you hope the lamp is dim enough to hide the embarrassment etched into your face.
“Just-” Your voice is weak, cracking. You’re running out of air. “I can trust you, right?”
Out of the corner of your eye, you see Jungkook’s eyes soften. “Y/N, I’m really fine with sleeping on the-”
“Well—” You tuck a strand behind your ear, feeling hot all of a sudden. The AC is running though? “—I’m not. You’ve got the neck pain and the couch is also fucking tiny. Just, you know, don’t be…. weird.”
You’re certain. The AC must be broken. How else is it possible that your entire body is on fire, burning up as you speak? That must be it. The AC must have just broken.
Jungkook doesn’t say anything for a while, thinks about your proposal, and you can hear your heart grow louder in your chest, pounding harder against your rib cage.
“Are you sure?”
He asks this quietly and tentatively. It gives you the courage to look back at him. He levels you with the same look he gave you when you offered to sleep in the same bed before. You hold his gaze, somehow.
And then, Jungkook gets up, taking his bedding with him, but you stop him.
“I don’t think-”
He pauses and you gesture at the bed to finish your sentence. There’s no space. That’s what you want to say, but it never leaves your lips. He understands though, and leaves the bedding on the couch.
There’s an awkwardness hanging between you as Jungkook walks over. It’s comical really, especially when you think about the fact that he and you have done a lot more than sleep in a bed together. Sure, you had alcohol buzzing through your systems then, but still, it’s ridiculous how tense it is right now.
When he lifts the cover, you can instantly feel the tininess of the bed. He and you will be sleeping centimetres apart from each other.
“Sorry,” Jungkook apologises when he bums your hand with his, clumsily slipping into bed. The apology is pointless though because his entire arm ends up being pressed against yours.
“I’m just gonna-” 
You don’t finish speaking and just turn on your side, back facing towards him. He nods before doing the same. You turn off the lamp. Jungkook shifts, and when you peek over your shoulder, you see him lying on the edge of the mattress, on the brink of falling out of the bed.
You sigh. “Do you-”
He perks up when you speak, and you have to pause to gather your voice. It’s hoarse for some reason.
“Do you want to come closer?”
You whisper the question. It’s barely audible, but with Jungkookso close to you, he hears it, clearly, like you whispered it into his ear.
“I’m fine-”
“You’re falling off the bed,” you tell him, and close your eyes before forcing the words out, clearing your throat. “If you want to, you can, uh, put your arm around me.”
For a moment, Jungkook doesn’t say anything. You think he’s going to decline, tell you it’s the last thing he would want-
“Are you, uh, sure?”
You want to throw the covers to the side. It’s too damn hot, your face on fire at this point.
Nothing happens and for a while, all you hear is his breathing before he starts to shift, his arm lifting underneath the cover and hesitantly sneaking around your middle.
“Is this, uh, okay?” he asks, careful to not put too much pressure on you, and you nod.
He clears his throat. “Alright.”
Jungkook is breathing into your neck. He must be close, you think, so close that if you turned, your lips would almost be touching. You squeeze your eyes shut at the thought, glad you’re facing away from him.
You can’t tell him the same, your voice long gone at this point. 
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“This is why you wanted to check out so early?” Jungkook thanks the waitress when she takes back the menu. “So we could have breakfast?”
Your face is scrunched up in a frown, confusion etched into your features. “Why couldn’t we just have breakfast at the hotel?”
Jungkook beams at you. “Hotel breakfast doesn’t compare to café breakfast, does it?”
“Yeah, but I could have slept another hour,” you say and run a hand through your hair, rubbing your eyes.
“Slept that badly, huh?”
You look at Jungkook. His face is twisted in something you can’t pinpoint.
“Stop,” you tell him, shaking your head. “I’m just always tired.”
He doesn’t respond then, and just curls his fingers around the orange cup, sipping on his coffee.
You’re not lying. You actually didn’t sleep badly, and you think you should assure him of that, tell Jungkook that you’re naturally always tired because you’re a college student, that sharing a bed with him isn’t the reason for your exhaustion, but somehow, you can’t will yourself to form the words.
“It’s nice here,” you say, looking around the café, the scnet of buttery pastries and freshly brewed coffee wafting through the air, powdered sugar floating around, the quiet hissing of the coffee machine in the back accompanying the piano music playing through the speakers.
“Best café in the city,” Jungkook told you, and you raise a brow.
“Did you scour Yelp-”
“For how long?”
Jungkook makes a face then, and you know longer than anyone else would, hours at least. You shake your head in disbelief and mutter under your breath, “You’ve got too much time on your hands.”
“Well, you like it here right? Totally worth it then,” he says, and as much as you don’t want to, heat crawls up your neck.
Your food arrives shortly after; a handful of golden brown waffles topped with powdered sugar, slices of strawberries and blueberries, and a steaming buttery croissant with jam on the side. The sight is Instagram worthy, your jaw dropping wide open.
“See, scouring Yelp for hours on end was worth it,” Jungkook grins, taking a picture of your food, and you frown.
“How much did you sleep?” you ask, reaching for your coffee and blowing across the surface, narrowing your eyes. There’s a click when you put it back on its saucer, a drop of coffee spilling on it. Brown clashing with washed-out purple.
“Enough,” he tells you, and you know he’s lying, the espresso shot he had added to his coffee selling him out. “Anyway, I’m starving. Let’s just eat.”
You comply, ripping your freshly baked croissant in half, steam wafting from it in hazy waves. You place one half onto Jungkook’s plate. He does the same, transferring half of his waffles to you.
“Is this what we do now?” he asks you when you pick up some of the jam with the tip of the butter knife.
“Seems like it.”
You smile at each other.
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“Thank you,” you mumble when Jungkook helps you, once again, to click off the seatbelt. “One day I’ll be able to do it myself.”
He smiles and throws the door shut. You jump out too. “Sure, Y/N. One day.”
You give him a look, and he offers you a smile. Side by side, you walk across the mostly empty parking lot before entering the convenience store. They all look more or less the same, you realise. You see no difference between this one and the first one you walked into.
Jungkook takes your hand into his almost automatically, and you don’t even stop for a second to think about it, gripping it back.
“Is this what we do now?” you ask as you browse through the aisle, looking for something that’s not chips and nuts.
He smiles. “Seems like it.”
You give him a look before shaking your head and leading him towards the refrigerator aisle, eyes finding a prepackaged box of sushi.
“Hey, you in the mood for sushi?” You pick up a box, inspecting it carefully. It doesn’t look too bad actually.
“When am I not?” he shoots back, and it’s decided then. Rest stop sushi for lunch it is.
You pick up another box and hand it to Jungkook before walking over to the checkout, grabbing two water bottles on your way there. The clerk hasn’t even begun ringing you up when you pull out your wallet and place an obscene amount of bills on the counter.
“Y/N!” Jungkook protests, but you ignore him, shoving his wallet to the side.
“You should have let me pay,” he tells you when you walk out of the store, still holding hands for some reason, and you snort.
“Well, then you should let me pay for gas.”
“I have let you-”
You click your tongue. “You should let me pay every time.”
Without looking, you know he’s rolling his eyes. You don’t care, a smile on your lips. Paying for lunch is a win in your books. You’re sure you’ll be paying for gas too by the end of the trip.
The sushi is mediocre at best, and worse than the Chinese takeout you had yesterday at worst, but for some reason, neither Jungkook nor you stop eating. The wasabi helps. It overpowers the refrigerator taste that’s stuck to the rice.
And as you eat, occasionally taking sips from your water, watching the cars speed past you on the highway with the AC blasting in your faces because it’s still summer and your roadtrip playlist playing in the background, you have to smile. You don’t know why, but a smile just finds your lips. And when you look over to Jungkook, it widens. Even more when he notices your gaze and gives you a smile too.
Once more, you realise how beautiful summer is, how everything feels possible and impossible at the same time, how every hour reminds you of a childhood you’ve never had, how the months are filled with either melancholy or exhilaration.
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You spent too much time at the rest stop, you conclude, when you arrive at the hotel, much later than planned. Because after you both finished your sushi, you suggested walking off the food. So, you both jumped out again, and walked a couple of laps, talking about everything and nothing. And hitting traffic soon after certainly delayed things by quite a bit as well.
The problem with arriving later than planned at the hotel means responding to your mother later than planned, so when you finally do, you’re not surprised your phone lights up with a call from her a minute later.
You look over your shoulder. Jungkook just went into the bathroom, meaning you had around ten minutes to get this done if sharing a hotel room with him for the past three days taught you anything. That should be more than enough.
You’re met with the usual questions—are you alright? Did you eat? Are you enjoying yourself?—and you answer them all with relative ease, staying quiet when your mother scolds you for having chips as dinner. It’s a like any, until-
“Yes, I will-”
You’re cut off by the sound of Jungkook’s soothingly soft singing that’s very much deserving of praise and attention any other day but elicits panic in you now. 
“Uh,” you start coughing and making extra noise, hoping to drown out Jungkook as you quickly walk out into the hallway, grabbing the key card before the door clicks shut.
“Are you sick, honey?” your mother asks.
“Oh, no, no, I just… choked on water,” you explain to her quickly. “I’m fine though.”
“Yeah? Be careful.” 
You hum, glad she didn’t bring up the-
“Also, who was singing just now?”
You screw your eyes shut and curse.
“Singing?” You try your best to sound confused. “What singing?”
Your mother shifts on the other side, and you would have definitely caved under her gaze if she was in front of you now. 
“Didn’t you hear? For a moment before you started choking, I heard a voice, singing. A boy, I think.”
You chuckle. “Yeah, uh, I don’t know-”
It’s the faint call of your name that halts you. You look at the door. It’s coming from there, you think. You pause to listen but nothing. You’re about to go back to dismissing your mother when the door opens, and a freshly showered Jungkook stands in front of you, hair dripping with water, droplets landing on his shirt, his eyes big.
“Y/N,” he says at your sight. “God, I already wondered where-”
“Mom, sorry, I gotta, uh, go-”
“Don’t you dare hang up on me, Y/N,” your mother interrupts you, and you freeze, feeling like a child. Your eyes lock with Jungkook’s, face contorted in horror. He presses his mouth shut, offering you an apologetic look.
“Who’s that?”
You close your eyes for a moment. “Jungkook.”
You don’t look at him when you speak his name.
There’s a long pause. “Can I talk to him?
And although she worded it like a question, you know it’s not. You hold your phone towards Jungkook, and his eyes grow gigantic. He shakes his head, backing away, but you shove it into his hands, mouthing to him just how sorry you were.
“Uh, h-hello?”
You push him back into the room, almost stumbling over his own feet as he does. You take your phone from him and put it on speaker.
“... to meet you.”
“Ah, yes, very, uh, nice to meet you too, Ms Y/L/N,” Jungkook coughs out and you sit down on the edge of Jungkook’s bed. (Yes, there are two beds, neither broken.”
“I just heard you singing,” your mother informs him, and you throw your hands into the air. How in the hell did she hear him?
Jungkook looks terrified, and you grab onto his hand resting on the bed, awaiting your mother’s words with him, sharing nervous looks. He interlocks his fingers with yours, your thumb brushing over his tattooed knuckles.
“No need to be embarrassed,” she says with a smile. “You’ve got a good voice.”
“T-thank you very much.”
There’s a pause then, and you lock eyes with Jungkook once more. You think maybe you can take the phone from him, but right just as you’re about to, your mother begins again,
“In what kind of relationship are you with my daughter?”
You think it's the straightforwardness of the question, the bluntness and casualness she asks it with. It has your jaw dropping open and your eyes screwing shut in horror. Embarrassment flushes through you, and you want to say something, but the words are all muddled on your tongue.
“Are you her boyfriend?”
You can’t even bring yourself to look at Jungkook, too mortified to peek into his direction.
“Uh, I-” He’s stammering, struggling to find his voice, and you can’t blame him, words failing you and refusing to come out too. What you can’t understand though is when he decides to say this, 
You think you would have had a bigger reaction if you weren’t so tired. But you are, so all you do is stare ahead of you for a few seconds before crashing down on the bed, face burying into your hands.
“Oh,” your mother says, and you don’t know if she’s happy or not, if she’s going to ask Jungkook to give back your phone and scold you like she did sophomore year. “For how long now?”
“N-not long.”
“But you are serious, right?”
You shoot up and take your phone from Jungkook, putting an end to this before he can spew more bullshit.
“Mom, we gotta go,” you quickly say. “We’ll talk later. Bye.”
And before your mother can tell you not to hang up on her, you do and throw your phone to the side. Silence hits you, and you close your eyes again, not wanting to look at Jungkook. He shifts next to you and clears his throat. It takes you a while, but when you think you’re not going to end up strangling him, you peel your eyes open. 
Your mouth parts to speak, but no words leave you. It takes you a few tries to find your voice. All you manage is a simple but desperate and confused, “Why?”
“I got nervous-”
“So you told my mom we are dating?” you exclaim, snapping back, and stare at Jungkook. He doesn’t meet your gaze, wringing out his hands.
“Well, I- you know how awkward I am!” he argues, but it does nothing to calm you, exasperation carved into your face. “When she asked if we were dating, I-I just panicked, okay? I didn’t know what to say and-”
He deflates, and you’re stuck between deciding to yell at him and silently passing away. In the end, you choose the latter, burying your face in your hands and leaning back. You can already feel the headache building up. Your mother won’t let this go. You’ll hear an earful. As much as you love her, it’s frustrating how she still sees you as a child in need of protection every step of the way.
“I’m tired,” you say after a while. You don’t know how much time has passed. 
Neither of you have moved. There’s heaviness in the air. You get up without a word, slipping into the bathroom and shutting the door behind you. You don’t hear the sigh Jungkook lets out.
And with that, you’re knocked right back to the starting point. All of the progress you’ve made in the last three days, the friendship you’ve built, crumbles right to the floor, lying there in shards.
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You can’t sleep.
Again, it’s not unusual for you to struggle to fall asleep on your first night at a hotel. The mattress is either too comfortable or not comfortable enough. The cover is either too thick or not thick enough. The pillow either sinks in too much or- You get the point. But you know that’s not why you can’t sleep. It’s the heaviness that weighs down your chest, the tension that fills every corner and crack of the room, the rigidness you inhale with every breath.
You turn on your back. Out of the corner of your eye, you see Jungkook on his back too. The two of you lying in your respective beds, and even though you’re only a handful of steps away from each other, it feels like a rift, a gaping hole, splitting you up, stranding both of you on your own lonely islands.
It’s quiet, tentatively.
Your voice sounds short and odd. You’re no longer mad- you don’t even think you were that to begin with. You were just… frustrated.
“I’m sorry.”
You turn your head to him and grip the covers. Words sit at the back of your throat, assurances that he doesn’t need to apologise, but before they can form on your tongue and spill out, he continues.
“I-I know that I put you in a weird spot, but I just-” There’s a pause, followed up with a sigh. “If you want, I’ll explain it to your mother- I just got flustered and nervous. And you’ve got every right to be mad at me, but just know I am sorry-”
He halts when you sit up and turn on the lamp. You both blink at the sudden brightness, but you move on quickly, needing to set the record straight.
“Jungkook, no,” you begin, shaking your head, eyes staring firmly into his, “don’t apologise. You don’t have to talk to my mother, I’ll figure it out myself. And actually, I wasn’t mad at you. I was just,” your gaze lowers, “frustrated because- my mother, she’s a bit protective of me, you know? She’s always been super critical of the guys I date, you know? And I’m just gonna get an earful-”
You pause and take a moment to breathe. “But that doesn’t matter. What matters is that I should apologise. So I’m sorry, Jungkook. I put you in a weird spot. I’m truly sorry for that.”
He sits up too, crossing his legs. A soft smile finds his face. “Looks like we’re both sorry, huh?”
“I’m more though.”
His smile turns into a grin. “No, I am.”
You raise a brow. “Pretty sure I am.”
He tuts you. “I’m going to have to politely and respectfully disagree with you. I definitely feel more sorry.”
You hold his gaze. “This is gonna go on and on, isn’t it?” When he smiles, you sigh. “I’m going back to sleep. Goodnight.”
You turn off the lamp. He laughs.
And even though the issue is resolved, you don’t slip into sleep. It’s like the exhaustion that plagued you previously has dissipated, and for some reason, you’re cold. It keeps you up. You want to turn off the AC, but you don’t want to get up either and risk waking up Jungkook. So you do nothing.
An eternity passes, and you still find no sleep. Your eyes trace over to Jungkook’s side. He has his back turned to you. You press your lips into a line. In the dark, you can’t figure out if he’s sleeping or not.
And like you yelled his name, he snaps his head around. “Yeah?”
He’s wide awake. Still, you keep your voice small when you continue, “Are you sleeping?”
“Yes, I’m sleeping right as we speak,” he tells you, and you send him a glare in the darkness. You think you can make out a smile on his face.
“I can’t sleep.”
You’re not sure why you tell Jungkook this, how he’s supposed to solve that problem for you, but the words are already out there and you can’t take them back. You expect a snarky comment, something annoying that will make you roll your eyes, but you’re met with the opposite.
“Do you want to watch something?”
You look at him with big eyes. “What would we be watching?”
“Anything you want,” he tells you, and even though you’re very much overwhelmed with the unlimited choice, you smile.
And just like that, the lights get turned on again, the night feeling foolishly young once more. 
Jungkook digs out his laptop from his suitcase and you fish out the only bag of chips you have left from the first day.
“Where do we…”
You trail off, but Jungkook knows what you’re asking. 
“My bed?” 
You nod and grab your pillow while he sets everything up. 
When you’re both finally in bed, covers thrown over you, hands taking turns to reach into the chips bag, he presents you with the hardest question anyone has ever asked you,
“What do you want to watch?”
You frown as you look at everything Netflix offers. You can’t choose, of course, so you choose to shoot back the question.
“What do you want to watch?”
Jungkook starts scrolling, mouth pressed in a line. “A film or-”
“Alright,” he clicks on the film section, “let’s see what- oh, how about Spirited Away?”
You’re quick to shake your head. “No, no, no, that’s too scary-”
“Scary?” Jungkook raises a brow.
You look away. “Look, I get scared easily, okay? No face is kinda scary, don’t you think? It’s also the middle of the night-”
“But I’d be watching with you.”
You scrunch your nose, shaking your head no again. “Let’s just watch Totoro.” 
You feel bad for shooting down his suggestion. 
“We can watch Spirited Away after.” You shove a handful of chips into your mouth, mumbling while chewing, “You can protect me then.”
Jungkook looks at you, his hand stilling in the chips bag. You don’t return his gaze.
“You know, since you’re my boyfriend or whatever,” you add quickly and clear your throat, hoping it’s obvious that it’s a joke as you search up Totoro. You don’t have to look to know there’s a smile on his lips.
You start the film, and Jungkook quiets down. You don’t feel cold anymore, not with him pressed to your side.
And as you lean back to watch, quietly munching on the chips, you know you were wrong. You weren’t knocked back to the starting point of your friendship. He and you have come a long way, figuratively and literally.
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You’re first to wake up.
The first thing you notice is the weird taste in your mouth, and you curse your past self for thinking having chips after brushing your teeth was a good idea. The second thing you notice is the arm around your middle, an arm that unmistakably belongs to none other than Jungkook; the tattoos confirming your assumption. The third thing you notice is just how close he is to you; his breath in your neck, his chest against your back, warmth radiating off him. 
Your heart beats heavy in your chest, heavier than usual. It should scare you, but for some reason, it doesn’t. For some reason, when it’s Jungkook, you feel at ease.
And even though waking up in the same bed as him prompted you to run out last time, you don’t even feel a smidge of that same panic. In fact, you don’t feel anything at all. Actually, no, you do feel something. You feel like closing your eyes again, slipping back into slumber with him.
So you do.
Before you drift back though, you wonder what would have happened if you hadn’t run out two years ago.
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When you finally wake up, it’s the middle of the day. A glance at the clock and you come to the mortifying realisation that you have exactly five minutes to check out. Clearly, not enough time.
You’re hurrying around the room, picking up everything that belongs to you and throwing it into your suitcase (because even though you didn’t unpack, you still have quite a bit lying around) when Jungkook suddenly stills, neck pillow in his hand.
“Do you want to stay another day?”
“I mean, we’re not gonna check out in time anyway, right? And so far we haven’t had the time to explore any of the cities we’ve been in either, so how about we do it now then? Let’s stay another night.”
Your brows knit together. “But I mean…. don’t we have to, you know, drive-”
“It’s just another eight hours until we’re-” He cuts himself off, flicking his wrist. “You know what? Forget it. It’s a stupid idea.”
Jungkook dismisses his suggestion before you can even think about it, going back to packing up, hooking the neck pillow to his bag before grabbing the clothes he has lying around. You watch him for a few seconds before taking out the shirt he just folded and throwing it onto the bed. 
“Let’s stay another day,” you smile, expecting a smile from him too, but Jungkook doesn’t, face twisting in something you can’t figure out. “What? What’s wrong?”
“I ironed the shirt before the trip. It wrinkles really easily,” he tells you quietly, a strange noise coming from the back of his throat. He’s in pain. “But it’s fine. I-I can iron it again. At home. Later. Actually, I didn’t want to wear it on the trip anyway.”
It doesn’t sound fine at all.
You cup your hands in front of your mouth. “I’m so sorry-”
Jungkook stops you from walking over to the bed and desperately try to smooth out the wrinkles, shaking his head. 
“It’s fine, Y/N,” he assures you again, and now it actually sounds fine. “Really, it’s fine.”
“I’m sorry,” you tell him nevertheless and rub your hands together, eyes drifting to the side.
He gives you a smile. “Well, I’m gonna go down and talk to the reception about us staying another night.”
“Go do that.”
And when the door shuts, you smile.
Being alone for once, you take the chance to pull out your phone to text your mother a long-winded explanation of last night and how Jungkook and you are merely friends. You think that will do for now, assure her you didn’t keep another boyfriend secret from her. Still, you’re certain you’ll get an earful once you’re back.
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“And now, if I may draw your attention to your right here—” You turn your head, a smile growing on your lips as you watch Jungkook struggle to find the rest of his sentence. “—you’ll see this… gorgeous little famous brick building.”
You raise your hand. He picks you. “What is it famous for?”
“Ah, yes, great question, young lady,” he coughs, and you can quite literally see the wheels turn in his head. “It’s famous… for its ghosts.”
And even though he doesn’t word it like a question, it very much sounds like one.
“Ghosts?” you repeat, raising a brow.
“Yes, ghosts,” Jungkook repeats, doubling down. “Happy ghosts though. Not spooky ghosts. I know how easily you scare.”
You roll your eyes, regretting revealing this information to him. “Please continue your tour.”
“Right, yes, follow me.”
Once your reservations were settled, you realised neither of you know what to do with all of that extra time. A city tour was thrown around, but it turns out booking a city tour on such notice is more than difficult. But Jungkook was quick to tell you anyone could give a city tour. Hell, he could do it!
So here you are, walking through the streets with Jungkook as he scrambles to make things up as you go, pointing at buildings you walk past and telling you about their supposed history.
“And this,” he stops and you look up, “is probably the most famous sight-”
“A McDonald’s?” you deadpan, scrunching your nose.
“A McDonald’s,” he says with a nod, and you raise your hand again. “Yes, please?”
“So where can I get my money back because clearly, this tour is a scam-”
“You’re telling me that McDonald's is the best thing this town has to offer? This is supposed to be the best city tour ever? A sham, I tell you!” 
“I’m trying here.” A dramatic pout grows on Jungkook’s lips, and you can’t help but laugh. You pinch his cheek. 
He scrunches his face and pushes your hand aside. “Y/N!”
“Well, if you’re gonna pout like a child, you’re gonna be treated like one,” you tell him, smiling.
“If you’re so dissatisfied with the tour, do it better-”
“I never proclaimed myself to be the best tour guide around though,” you shoot back, and he scrunches his nose.
“Being a tour guide is hard, alright-”
“You just suck.”
Jungkook presses his lips into a line and stares at you. You give him a smile, enjoying this far too much.
“You’re mean, Y/N, you know that?” he hisses, and you laugh. “I’m not doing the tour anymore.”
“Thank god,” you exhale, placing your hand on your chest, feigning relief. Jungkook gapes at you. You laugh again. “Come on, let’s just go.”
“Where to?” he asks you, and you hook your arm with his, smiling.
“Anywhere,” you say.
Jungkook blinks at you before finally, cracking a smile too.
“Anywhere it is.”
You walk side by side, exploring the streets and corners and shops this city has to offer, dipping in and out of cafés and bookstores on your way. And at some point, you’re holding his hand. You don’t notice it until you have to let go at some point and reach for Jungkook’s hand again. You can’t say whose hands wandered first, but you can say it feels oddly natural. It feels oddly right.
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“Now, that wasn’t so bad, was it?” Jungkook asks you with a smile when the credits start rolling, the outro music of Spirited Away filling the air around you. He turns his head to you.
“Shut up,” you mumble, downing the last bit of wine you have left in your paper cup (this hotel is the opposite of fancy). “But no, it wasn’t.”
He grins at you over his shoulder as he puts away his laptop. “See, I told you.”
“The film still traumatised my young self, alright? The ghost-”
“No Face,” he supplies.
“Right, yeah, anyway, that guy’s fucking scary when you first watch the film. The way he follows Chihiro and won’t leave her alone?” You shudder and shake your head.
Jungkook’s still grinning when he fills up his paper cup with wine, gesturing for you to hand him yours. 
Jungkook clinks his paper cup with yours, and your shoulder shakes with laughter as you drink, eyes locked with his. You’re first to break, your hand quickly coming up to your mouth to stop any of the wine from spilling.
“You’re so stupid,” you tell him when you’ve managed not to make a mess of the sheets, coughing a bit. Jungkook laughs. 
You place your half-empty paper cup on the nightstand and lie down, tired from the day and alcohol. You’re tipsy, for sure. Jungkook follows you, throwing the blanket over you. You’re quick to snuggle into it. Your faces are close, inches apart. One of you should back away, allow for more space, but neither of you even think of it. You just lie in the quiet together.
The warm yellow glow from the lamp on the nightstand spills beautifully down Jungkook’s face, softening his features to butter. It accentuates the gentle slope of his nose, contrasts the moles imprinted on his skin, and brings out his starry doe eyes, eyes filled with so much gentleness and goodness you think your heart is going to burst if you looked into them too long.
Gazing at him, you can’t help but smile at the thought that all of this wouldn’t have happened if Sooyoung hadn’t convinced you. You would have never gotten to know Jungkook the way you do now, seen all of his sides—the awkward and shy one, the brave and protective one, the caring and kind one—, and realised he’s one of the best people you’ve ever met.
You thank Sooyoung.
“Hey, Y/N?”
He speaks quietly, in a whisper. You match his volume.
Jungkook doesn’t avert his eyes when he speaks, “Are we friends?”
You blink a handful of times, taking a moment to think about his question. A smile curls on your lips when you come up with the answer, “Almost.”
He raises a brow. “Almost?”
“Yes, almost.”
Jungkook stares at you before chuckling, shaking his head. “I’ve never gone on a roadtrip with any of my friends, or even shared the same bed with them. Not even Joon, and he’s my best friend. And now you tell me we’re just almost friends?”
Your smile widens into a grin. His eyes are digging into your face. You don’t meet his gaze. “Looks like you’re not that close with your friends then.”
He lets your words settle into the air, only expressing his disapproval with a click of his tongue and a scrunch of his nose.
“But it’s weird, isn’t it?” you begin quietly, still not looking at Jungkook. “It’s weird to think about how quickly we’ve grown close. This trip almost didn’t happen, you know?”
He looks at you.
“When Soo suggested you’d come, I wasn’t… thrilled.”
“Sorry,” you chuckle. “But can you blame me for being hesitant to be stuck in a car with a stranger? I didn’t want it to be awkward.” You turn your head to the side, eyes finding his. “And I wasn’t wrong. Remember when-”
“Yes, I remember,” Jungkook quickly interrupts. “I remember how awkward it was-”
“You mean how awkward you were,” you correct and earn yourself an eye roll from him. “What? Are you denying it?”
“I’m not,” he mutters, scrunching his nose. “But it’s not like you tried to make it less awkward.”
“Well, sorry, I didn’t say anything when you put the snacks in the back, or when you silently watched-” 
“I get it, Y/N,” Jungkook interjects, a dramatic pout forming on his lips. It takes you everything not to pinch his cheek. 
“You know, I was so sure I was going to regret it, you know?”
“Agreeing to let me come?”
“Yeah, I mean you and I were strangers before this. Even with Soo and Joon around, I wasn’t sure it wasn’t gonna be… weird.”
“But you don’t regret it, do you?”
You think about the last couple of days, think about all of the experiences you’ve made, how you’ve won a new friend, and you can’t contain the smile that slips onto your lips, stretching from one cheek to the other. The answer is obvious.
“No, I don’t.”
And even though you aren’t looking at each other, gazes tracing the ceiling together, you know there is a smile on the other’s lips. Silence hits you, comfortable silence. 
“Hey, Y/N?” 
You hum in response, growing too tired to speak, eyes starting to fall shut. You think Jungkook notices, think that’s why he’s pausing, to contemplate whether or not to continue. But you’re wrong. He doesn’t pause because he picked up on your exhaustion, his mind racing far too fast for him to. He pauses because he doesn’t know if he should bring it up in the first place, let the words slip that have been on his tongue forever now. 
Jungkook takes a deep breath. “But we aren’t strangers, are we?”
He speaks quietly, and you don’t think you would have heard him if you weren’t lying in bed together, side by side. You want to turn your head, but for some reason, your neck feels oddly stiff. Your brows knit together.
“What… do you mean?”
And then there’s another round of silence. 
It allows your mind to ponder over his words, dissect them into their own pieces, pull them apart, syllable for syllable, figure out the meaning of them separately and then together, and before you can come to any kind of conclusion, Jungkook speaks again,
“Remember when you asked me about my biggest regret and I wouldn’t tell you?” He doesn’t wait for an answer. “Do you still wanna know?”
You should probably ask him where this was going, tell him he’s jumping from one thing to another, but-
Jungkook shifts. There’s a feeling growing in your gut. It’s not bad, at least you don’t think. It’s just there, alerting you.
“There was this girl,” he starts, and you listen closely. “I met her during a party two summers ago. She bumped into me. Almost spilled her drink all over me. We talked the entire night, even played a round of beer pong even though neither of us like beer.”
Your heart begins thumping in your chest, heavy and hard. The realisation hits you so fast you can’t even look away. It whips you right across the cheek. 
Jungkook remembers.
“Somehow, we ended up at my place, and,” something like a smile finds his lips, “well, one thing led to another. The next morning though,” you know what he’ll say, “I woke up alone.”
You close your eyes and swallow.
“So my biggest regret is probably never asking for her number,” he whispers, his words breathed into the air, floating around in the room, lifted by the warm light, presented right in front of your eyes. You don’t want to look at them, heat crawling up your neck at their sight. He doesn’t know what he’s saying, you tell yourself. It’s the exhaustion and alcohol. That must be it.
“Or you know, not telling her I’d love to get to know her more and she can stay for breakfast if she wants,” he says. “I would have loved it to wake up next to her.”
You are his biggest regret?
It makes no sense. It seems absurd to you. He must be joking, you tell yourself. There’s no way any of this is real, that he didn’t get upset at your disappearance but simply disappointed and sad, that the night you shared together left as much of an impression on him as it did on you. 
“I can’t believe you remember,” you say, voice thin and weak. 
“Of course, I did.”
He turns to you then, and instantly, your heart stops in your chest. You wait, count the seconds, anticipating his words. You don’t know what you’re expecting him to say, but it’s not this,
“I thought you were really cute.”
His confession knocks the air right out of your lungs, all of it escaping you in one go. If you had it in you, you’d turn to him and meet his eyes. But your gaze remains stuck on the ceiling.
He’s drunk, you repeat to yourself. The words are laced with alcohol, for sure. His mind is clouded with drunken foolishness. It must be.
The rest of your sentence never leaves your lips, a terrible knot in your throat. Words are clumsy on your tongue, your mind jumbled with thoughts you can’t even begin to dissect. It’s terrible, the minute of silence feeling so full and empty at the same time. You learn just how loud being silent can be, how deafening, how heavy.
“I’m serious.” 
But still, you can’t respond, your mouth opening and closing in a desperate manner to get something to spill out. Nothing comes out though. You can’t quite find the words, but you think he knows. You think he knows you want to apologise for leaving the morning so abruptly, think he knows you haven’t forgotten either, think he knows you would have stayed if he had just asked you to.
The click of the lamp snaps you out of your thoughts, suddenly plunged into darkness. Jungkook lies back down, pulling the covers over you. It marks the end of your conversation. 
Your mouth presses into a line and your eyes flutter shut because you know very well you aren’t going to find your voice until tomorrow morning. You curse yourself and your inability to speak. It’s stupid. You know very well how much courage it must have taken him to tell you all of this, and here you are, lying in silence and-
Your train of thought is stopped when Jungkook grabs your hands underneath the covers and interlaces his fingers with yours. It’s then that you look at him, head twisting to the side, eyes meeting his. And you know, this isn’t the alcohol speaking. It’s him speaking, every word is his.
Jungkook glows, you discover, because, in the darkness, you can see him crystal clear, bright as the stars and the moon combined, outshining everything and anything.
“I still do.” His eyes stare into yours. “I still think you’re really cute.”
And when Jungkook carefully puts his arm around your waist, you know it’s fine you can’t respond right now. You inch closer to him, your bodies practically melting into one. His touch is warm and comforting. It feels right.
You fall asleep.
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“That’s it, isn’t it?” you say, scrunching your nose and looking at the McDonalds bag in your lap. “Our last dinner on the roadtrip.”
“For now,” Jungkook adds, putting on your shared roadtrip playlist. He takes the brown bag from you and unpacks it. “Don’t forget, we still have to drive back in a week.”
You take the cheeseburger he hands you. “What happened to my McDonald’s ban?”
Jungkook unwraps his burger and bites into it. “Well, we’re in the middle of nowhere and unless you prefer stale chips, go ahead.”
You’re pouting as you unwrap your cheeseburger. “Whatever.”
He smiles.
You haven’t talked about last night. When you woke up, you thought you would, but you didn’t. You honestly can’t say how, but it’s not awkward. Still, there’s an elephant in the room, or, well, in the car, sitting in the back with you and patiently waiting for one of you to address it. 
“Can’t believe we never thought of eating in the back,” Jungkook mumbles, dipping a fry into the sweet and sour sauce. You’ve arranged a spread on the middle seat, the bag serving as a plate.
“I know, right? It’s so crammed in the front.”
“Well, now we know better,” Jungkook says, and you hum, grabbing a chicken nugget and throwing it into your mouth, wiping your greasy fingers and mouth on the napkin you have in your lap.
“Can’t believe we’re almost there,” you mumble, taking a deep breath, the weight of the journey dawning on you. “We really drove for five days straight, huh?”
“Four,” he corrects. “But yeah, crazy to think about. Didn’t feel all that long though.”
“I thought it would be worse and more exhausting.”
Jungkook locks eyes with you, a smile forming on his lips. “Yeah, it was really fun.”
You smile too. “Yeah, really fun.”
And then you go back to eating, munching on your respective burgers, grabbing a fry or chicken nugget in between bites. By the end your bellies are so full, neither of you want to move, in need of a break. All you manage to do is gather your garbage in the McDonald’s bag before collapsing again.
“What was your favourite part about the trip so far?”
Jungkook turns to you at the question, eyes meeting yours. He frowns. “Probably when we had Chinese food in the park.”
You nod, approving of his choice. “Yeah, that was really great and fun.”
“What about you?”
A smile grows on your lips because you already know your answer. “Your shitty city tour.”
Jungkook levels you with a look, shaking his head. “It wasn’t that shitty.”
You laugh. “It was.”
“Just accept it. It was really bad.” He pouts. You grin. “But it was really fun too.”
“You mean fun for you,” he hisses. “You laughed at me.”
And at his words, you have to laugh again. As much as he tries to act upset, Jungkook has to mirror you, the corners of his lips involuntarily pulling up.
“Please, you’re not sorry at all.”
“I’m not,” you admit and grin at him.
Jungkook rolls his eyes and shakes his head. You look at him when he suddenly sits up.
“Let’s take a picture!”
You blink at his enthusiasm. “What?”
“We never took any pictures.” He pulls out his phone. “Let’s take some now.”
He pats the seat next to him and you’re quick to move in, knees knocking against his. You adjust your hair to your liking, Jungkook patiently waiting for you to finish, his phone already up in the air and ready to go.
You nod, giving a small smile and holding up a peace sign as Jungkook clicks on the shutter. He mimics you, his smile toothier than yours though. 
“Wait, wait, wait,” you say and he stops, turning his gaze to you. “The way we’re sitting-” You click to view the pictures. “Look, it’s kinda awkward.”
Jungkook hums, agreeing with you. “How about this?”
You stiffen when he puts an arm around you and pulls you even closer to him. But you relax soon after, a smile forming on your lips.
“This good?” he asks you, loosening his hold on you, clearly ready to back off again, but you’re quick to nod. In fact, you inch a bit closer to him, your face right next to his as you prepare for the new set of pictures.
Your faces quickly morph from toothy smiles to tongues sticking out and your features contorting in odd ways. The pictures go from casual to silly in a matter of seconds. In the last couple ones, you’re squishing each other’s cheeks, and by the end, you’re laughing.
“Oh, this one’s cute,” Jungkook says and shows you his phone. You lean over to look. It’s one of the first ones when you were still trying. You’re smiling into the camera, your hand thrown up in a peace sign. Jungkook has his arm around you, a smile on his own lips, but instead of staring into the camera like you, his eyes are on you.
You pause, the look on his face surprising you. It’s so soft and gentle. It’s like he’s looking at something very dear to him, something precious, something he loves. But he’s simply staring at you.
“Yeah… it’s cute,” you mumble, voice much quieter now. And when you lift your eyes and meet his gaze, your voice disappears into thin air. Because Jungkook’s right there, in front of you, his face inches away from yours.
This is it. You know. If you were in a romcom, you’d kiss. You’d share your epic first kiss, sitting in the back of your shared car after four days of driving across the country, four days of getting to know each other, four days of sharing the same bed. This is the moment. The moment that will define this summer, the moment in which you’ll tell Jungkook all of the things you wanted to say yesterday but didn’t have the courage to. The moment that will bring you and him together.
It’s there, right in front of you, dangling and waiting to be grasped and held tight, seized.
Your eyes darken as they lower to his lips, heart thumping loud and heavy in your ribcage, everything inside you screaming at you to do it, to finally find the bravery you couldn’t muster up yesterday and two years ago when you first ran from him. Your hand grips onto his knee for support, and Jungkook’s here to provide it, his hand gripping yours, encouraging you; the other one finding anchor around your waist, his phone somewhere on the floor, forgotten about.
You feel his breath on your lips. It’s about to happen. You’re mere split seconds away from it when the sound of your phone ringing cuts through the air.
It’s gone.
The moment dissipates into thin air right in front of your eyes, leaving behind a cloud of awkwardness.
You break apart, the distance between you feels endless. Your heart sinks in your chest, the feeling of Jungkook’s touch imprinted on your skin, still hot and burning, questions hanging in the air.
You’re scrambling to the front when you pick up the call, pressing your phone to your ear to the point your knuckles turn white. And even though there’s a part of you that’s glad that you were interrupted because you don’t know what would have happened after the kiss, there’s another part of you that’s cursing yourself for switching your phone from silent to loud.
“Yes, hi,” you sputter, clearing your throat and stumbling into the passenger seat.
“Hey, Y/N!” Sooyoung greets you, and you don’t look in Jungkook’s direction when he gets into the driver’s seat, his phone back in his pocket. He lowers the music. “Where are you guys?”
You frown. “Uh, we-we are having dinner.”
There’s a pause, and you hate the silence because it makes you so acutely aware of the silence between Jungkook and you.
“Are you alright? You sound weird.”
“Weird?” you say with an exaggerated chuckle. “What? No, of course, I’m alright.”
Sooyoung hums on the other side, sounding more than less convinced. “Well, if you say so.”
“I’m alright. It’s alright,” you repeat, and you don’t know if that’s for her, you, or Jungkook. “Anyway, why, uh, are you calling me?”
“Oh, right-” Sooyoung cuts herself short and you think you can hear someone talk to her. You frown, the voice sounding a lot like Taehyung, but just before you can ask, she returns. “Uh, can you tell me when you’ll be at the hotel?”
“Why do you wanna know when we’re at the hotel?” you ask, your frown deepening. You glance over to Jungkook. He has the same look on his face.
“Just because.”
Now it’s Sooyoung who sounds weird.
It takes you a moment to get it, your frown slowly disappearing at the realisation. 
“Soo, are you at the hotel?”
Jungkook snaps his head to you, and you turn on speaker phone. There are hisses and curses from the other side until-
You wince, the onslaught of voices blowing out your speakers. Jungkook and you look at each other.
“Yeah, hi, we’re at the hotel,” Taehyung says, confirming your previous assumption. The smile’s evident on his lips. “So hurry the fuck up, you two lovebirds, and get your asses here.”
“Lovebirds?” Jungkook sputters, exasperated and embarrassed at the same time. “We are no- what are you talking about, Tae?”
You can practically see Taehyung roll his eyes. “Yeah, yeah, just-”
He’s cut off by Seokjin. “Hey guys, how are you?”
“Uh, good,” you answer for the two of you, confused and struggling to wrap your brain around this. You’re not catching up really. “H-how are you guys all at the hotel? How did you get there? And who’s at-”
“Everybody. Everyone’s here, grandmas. How are we at the hotel before you when you had like a two-day head start?”
The insults continue, your friends berating you for taking so long. Namjoon puts an end to it, taking the phone and telling you to just get here as fast as possible, promising to explain everything once you’re at the hotel. 
When you hang up, you feel tired. Your eyes lock with Jungkook’s.
Somehow, there’s no awkwardness anymore. You’re not sure how that’s possible, if it’s the fact that your friends are all waiting for you at the hotel that distracts your minds enough, or the fact that it can’t ever be awkward between you anymore because there’s trust and comfort. Either way, you’re glad.
“Sure, yeah.”
You sound less than ready, and Jungkook smiles before slotting the keys into the ignition.
“We’ll be fine.”
You hope he’s right.
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It turns out that once Sooyoung and Namjoon got back in town, Hoseok was quick to propose to drive after you guys. After all, he’s just finished all of his exams and is down for a little adventure. Jimin joined in next as the second driver. And with Jimin in on it, Sana and Yeji jumped on board too. Soon enough your gigantic friend group was packing up their things for a last-minute summer roadtrip, Nine people crammed in three cars. With so many people, the costs were down to nothing, hotels and food costing a penny, and the great number of drivers allowed them to go for hours on end without breaks.
And by the end, you feel dumb for not suspecting anything earlier. You should have because Sooyoung’s daily calls stopped all of a sudden. But you were too preoccupied to notice.
“I’m really so sorry,” Sooyoung tells you once you’re in your room, and you sit down on one of the two beds.
“It’s fine, Soo,” you say, patting her hand. “It was actually fun with Jungkook.”
“Yeah?” She’s studying your face for any hints of deception. “You’re not just saying that? You can be honest now. We’re not on the phone anymore.”
“Well,” you sigh, “as much as I hate to admit it, but you were right. He really is nice. So no, I’m not just saying that.”
And at that, Sooyoung lights up. “Told you so!”
You give her hand one more squeeze before lying down, sinking into the mattress. She follows you.
“Oh, did he recognise you, by the way? I’ve been meaning to ask.”
You keep your gaze trained on the ceiling as you contemplate what to tell her. You don’t think you want to get into it all, not now at least when so much is still not resolved, when you don’t know yourself what’s going on between Jungkook and you.
“Oh.” Sooyoung sounds disappointed, you think. “Well, glad I was right again.”
You hum.
Your conversation quickly moves on to her romantic getaway with Namjoon because she hasn’t gotten much of a chance to tell you about it, the fact she was stuck in another town taking precedence.
“Anyway, I think I’m gonna wash up,” Sooyoung tells you and slaps your knee before getting up. It’s only then that you see her suitcase in the corner of the room. You straighten up.
“Wait, are we sharing a room?”
She looks at you from her crouched position, pyjamas in her hands. Her brows knit together. “Who else do you think you’d be sharing a room with?” Her lips quirk up into a smirk when you don’t respond. “Kook?”
You laugh, but it sounds off. “What? No! I-I thought you were sharing a room with Joon.”
She shakes her head and gets up, her toiletry bag and pyjamas in her hands. “No, you’re stuck with me, Y/N. Kook’s with Joon.”
You nod and barely register Sooyoung walking into the ensuite bathroom, one thought occupying your mind.
You won’t be alone with Jungkook anymore.
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[jeon jungkook - 00:32] : hey are you still up?
[you - 00:32] : yeah whats up?
You watch as the three grey dots appear and disappear for a few seconds, and you’re about to ask him to spit it out when-
[jeon jungkook - 00:32] : you wanna meet up in the car?
You’ve typed out the answer and hit send faster than you can blink.
[you - 00:32] : be right there
You don’t even check if Sooyoung’s actually sleeping or not when you climb out of bed and leave, your phone and the keycard to the room are the only things with you. And even though it’s summer, it is a lot chillier at night. You shiver once you’re outside, but you push through, marching across the empty parking lot.
When you get in, Jungkook’s already sitting in the passenger seat.
“Nice pyjamas,” he tells you with a smile, and you roll your eyes. He’s still in his clothes from before.
“Thanks,” you say, shutting the door, shivering when the AC hits you.
“Are you cold, Y/N?” Jungkook asks you, disbelief on his face, and you grumble.
“Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’m a wuss that gets scared by everything and is also cold sensitive.”
“You’re not cold-sensitive, Y/N. You’re slight temperature changes-”
“Is that why you texted me?” you interrupt.
Jungkook sits back and shakes his head. “Obviously not.” 
He pauses and shuts off the AC before taking off the flannel he’s wearing. “Here.” He holds it out to you, and you can’t meet his eyes when you accept it. It’s a bit big on you. It brings instant warmth. You smell him on it.
“How is it with Soo?”
“Fine,” you say. “How’s it with-”
“Fine too.”
Neither of you say anything for a moment. “Is it just me-”
“-but it’s weird to share a room with other people, right?” you finish his sentence, and he’s quick to agree with you. 
“Yeah, it does feel… weird.”
There’s another pause.
Jungkook claps his hands together. “Alright, let’s do this.”
You frown. “Do what?”
But instead of elaborating, he just gets out, gesturing for you to follow him. Left with no other choice, you do, wrapping his flannel tighter around your body when a breeze hits you.
“What do you-”
You’re cut off by the sound of ‘Isn’t She Lovely’ by Stevie Wonder playing through Jungkook’s phone. He gives you a smile when you look at him, walking over to you and grabbing your phone and the keycard out of your hand to put it on the ground, next to his own phone.
“What are we-”
Once again, you don’t finish your question, Jungkook taking your hands into his.
“We’re dancing,” he tells you with a grin, and before you can even protest, he spins you around.
“Jungkook,” you say when you’re facing him again, cheeks ablaze. “I can’t dance.”
“Just go with it,” he says, but when he sees the knit between your brows, he adds, “Trust me.”
And with that, you can’t help but let him lead you, his hands guiding your every move as you dance in the empty parking lot, spinning like you’ve got a clue of what you’re doing.
“See, you can dance,” Jungkook whispers when you’re back in his arms. “You’re great at this.”
You shake your head at his compliment, disagreeing, but it’s a nice thing to hear. 
And so you continue, clumsily and slowly dancing around, feet shaky and hesitant as you move. Stars are dotting the night sky, shining down on you, the moon high up there, smiling, the lonely street lamp you’re under illuminating you like a spotlight, the flannel billowing out around you with every spin you do. At this moment, as you hold Jungkook’s hands, you’re convinced it’s just you and him in this world. 
And right at this moment, you can feel it—the summer magic in the air, the endlessness of tonight, the potential and possibilities all around you, the looming question of where is this going?. It’s all right here, surrounding you, and for some reason, it’s not scary.
It’s not scary when the air is warm and fuzzy and the moon and stars are above you, lighting up the sky, and summer is puncturing every minute that passes by. It’s not scary when you’re holding Jungkook’s hands and gazing into his eyes. 
By the end of the song, you’re out of breath, panting. But you’re smiling too. And when it plays again, neither of you let go of one another. Instead, you start to sway. You rest your head on Jungkook’s chest, eyes closing as you listen, his heart beating under your ear. His arms sneak around your middle. He holds you close.
You never thought you could feel at peace and terrified at the same time, never thought you could feel like this when the realisation sinks in with you.
You’re falling- no, tripping for Jungkook, stumbling over your own two feet and plunging head first into darkness, the unknown.
The fall is inevitable, you realise. It’s been happening for the past two years; starting on the first night you spend together and continuing with every quick glance you caught of him when you walked across campus, fuelled by the stories Sooyoung would relay to you every week, the jokes she’d tell you he made that day, and now propelled faster by this trip, by the hours locked in the car together, the nights slept in the same bed, sharing the same blanket, hearts beating side by side, closer than ever.
There’s no stopping this, and you don’t know if you would want to even if you could.
You’re not sure what it is, if it’s the summer magic floating in the air, but falling in love, giving your heart to someone, pulling it out of your chest, loosening it from its roots in between your ribs, gift-wrapping it and tying a bow around it, to hand it over to Jungkook for safekeeping, for it to be his and his only, seems less daunting than ever. In fact, it seems right, the only possible thing you could be doing now, a natural progression.
And even though you haven’t landed yet, haven’t gotten to the end of your fall, you know it will be fine. You know it will be soft and gentle. You know there will be someone to catch you. Putting your heart into Jungkook’s hands, as terrifying as it is, is the natural thing to do. You shouldn’t be so willing to give a piece away from you, to hand it over so easily, should want to run away in panic, but for some reason, you’ve never wanted to do anything more.
“We’ve done it all,” Jungkook whispers into your ear during the harmonica solo, and you stop swaying.
“What do you mean?” you ask, and you can hear him smile.
“You said this isn’t a romcom in which we dance under the stars, go on coffee shop dates, and sneak out to meet up.” You peel your eyes open and look at him. He’s grinning at you. “We did it all.”
“Can I tell you a secret?” he whispers and gazes deeply into your eyes, his features soft and glowing under the streetlight. He’s never been more beautiful. You can feel your heart in your ears, every beat. You think you know the secret.
You nod.
“I love you.”
And even though you already knew it, your lips pull up into the biggest grin, fireworks exploding in your stomach, heart swelling in your chest to the point of eruption.
“Can I tell you a secret?” you ask him, voice shaky with excitement, and lean impossibly closer, hands gripping his shirt because you need something to hold onto.
“Please,” Jungkook practically pleads, and you don’t hesitate a second to say it, letting the three words escape you that have been sitting inside you for ages now.
“I love you too.”
And then, you press your lips to Jungkook’s, going up on your toes to reach him, eyes fluttering shut, finally doing what you should have done a long time ago. He holds your middle, his nose bumping yours as he kisses you back, firmly. Even though this isn’t your first kiss, it does feel like it—sparks ricocheting through your entire body, time freezing to a stop, nothing mattering more than him right now. Jungkook is every star and every moon in this world. He is the summer and the autumn and the winter and the spring. He is everything. 
The kiss ends far too soon. You’re already yearning for his lips again, for him.
“You think your mother is gonna kill me if she finds out I kissed her daughter?” 
You smack his shoulder, or, well, you try because you’re breathless and can’t muster up much. It’s a hit, and barely qualifies as that. It’s an attempt. It’s enough to make him smile though.
“Jungkook,” you say, “I swear to God, if you mention my mother again after kissing me, you’re never going to kiss me-”
He cuts you off, pressing his lips to yours one more time, cradling your cheeks. You allow it, leaning into it and kissing him back, grip tightening around his shirt. It feels too right to stop. You already know, you won’t ever get enough of the kisses, won’t ever stop kissing Jungkook, for even a second.
And when you part this time, you rest your forehead to his, needing the support, and there’s no doubt in your mind, Jungkook will always be there to provide it. He’ll always be there to be your rock, your person to lean onto, you can count on.
“Oh,” he says, digging through his pocket, and you watch as he pulls out a set of keys. They shine under the streetlamp, bright and dazzling. He takes your hand and wraps your fingers around them, the jagged edges lightly digging into your skin.
“You forgot these at my place.”
Your eyes grow big, mouth dropping wide open.
“Jungkook-” you begin but don’t finish, sputtering. You shake your head, a smile on your lips. “You know these would have been useful two years ago, right? I had to walk to Sooyoung to get the spare key from her.”
He grins at you and wraps his arm around your shoulder, pulling you close to him and pressing a kiss to your forehead. “Well, better late than never, right?”
You meet his gaze and smile. He doesn’t say it, but you know. “Right, better late than never.”
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Jungkook and you are the last ones to arrive for breakfast, strolling up to the table together, enough space between you not to raise any suspicion, not wanting to reveal the news to your friends just yet. It’s best not to drop this first thing in the morning, you decided together. Luckily for you, there are exactly two empty seats next to each other. 
You’ve just come back from the buffet (waffles for you and pancakes for Jungkook) when Sooyoung looks at you.
“Did you go out last night?”
You freeze. “What?”
“I think I heard you sneaking out in the middle of the night,” she says, taking a sip from her coffee.
You don’t know what else to say. It’s all you can muster up.
“Well,” you refrain from looking at Jungkook, “no, I, uh, didn’t.”
“Huh.” She blinks. “I could swear I heard the door opening at night-”
“Wait, Yoongs, didn’t you say you saw Y/N and Kook last night in the parking lot?” Hoseok brings up, and you stiffen in your seat, fingers curling around the armrests. Jungkook sucks in a sharp breath, his knee jerking uncontrollably. Everyone around the table quiets and looks at you two. Probably not the best idea to sit next to each other.
“Y/N?” Sooyoung says, her eyes as big as saucers. Namjoon chokes on his drink next to her.
Sana gasps, clamming her hand in front of her mouth. “Shut up, are you guys-”
“No, what? Don’t be ridiculous!” Jimin denies, shaking his head. “There’s no way-” He pauses when he sees the look on Jungkook’s and your face. “Wait…”
“Did you really see-?” Taehyung turns to Yoongi, sitting on the edge of his seat, and the older takes a sip from his orange juice, keeping everyone waiting, the suspense rising with every moment of silence.
“Yeah, I did.”
“Oh my god,” Yeji mumbles under her breath before turning to Jungkook and you, her mouth slowly splitting into a gigantic grin. “Are you guys-?”
You share a look. “Uh, I, well-”
“Didn’t you kiss too?” Hoseok blurts out, speaking without thinking. “That’s what you said, right, Yoongs?”
“You kissed?” Taehyung sputters before beginning to slow clap, and Namjoon’s quick to tell him to stop it.
“Kissed and slow danced,” Yoongi confirms, clearly believing Jungkook and you have been a thing for a while now, failing to realise that he’s revealing your relationship to everyone on your very first day as a couple. “Or was that not you?”
Jungkook and you share another look. Even though this isn’t the way you imagined telling your friends, you don’t mind. Because what difference does it make?
“No, that was us,” you say.
“You didn’t see wrong,” Jungkook confirms with a nod.
And at your confession, your friends gasp before erupting into hollers and cheers. None of them care that guests are shooting them dirty looks. They’re far too happy for Jungkook and you to care. You love them so much, as embarrassing as this is. The support is heartwarming.
“Congrats to you guys!” Namjoon grins, Sooyoung next to him is far too shocked to say anything.
“Yeah, fuck, I’m so happy for you two!” Yeji coos.
“A toast from the newly wed couple please!” Seokjin gestures at you to stand up, but neither of you make a single move.
“We’re not married!” you say, and Jungkook thanks Sana when she slaps Seokjin’s shoulder.
And since the two of you aren’t really toast-making people, Jungkook saves you by lifting his glass of water into the air like it’s an expensive flute of champagne. 
You’re first to raise your glass too, clinking it with his. Your friends are quick to follow suit. 
Jungkook looks over to you.
To us.
You grin.
Sooyoung gives you a tight hug, whispering into your ear just how happy she is for you and that she’ll pack and switch rooma. You thank her; for everything, you say, truly everything. She shakes her head.
And when Jungkook and you look at each other again, you know you’ll always get half of his breakfast and he’ll always get half of your breakfast, and he’ll always hold your hand at every rest stop and gas station and every time you need it, and you’ll always buy him a neck pillow when his neck acts up again and hold a water bottle to his lips when he’s thirsty and driving. You know you’ll never have to fight over who sleeps on the couch anymore, but you’ll always have to fight over who gets to pay.
You smile, and it widens when Jungkook transfers half of his pancakes onto your plate. You do the same.
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“Good morning,” Jungkook smiles when he sees you stir and peel your eyes open, putting his phone aside to lie back down with you, pulling the covers over the two of you. Your eyelids are still heavy with sleep. Keeping them open is hard.
Your mood doesn’t drop until you think of today’s agenda and remember, you’re driving back. You groan. 
“I don’t wanna go,” you say, a pout growing on your lips, and Jungkook smiles, pulling you closer to him.
“Neither do I,” he tells you. “But we have to.”
You sigh. “I can’t believe it. How has it been a week?”
“Well, time flies when you’re having fun.”
You bury your face into his neck and pull the covers tighter around you, your body pressed up against his.
“And when it’s summer.”
Jungkook grins. “Yeah, and when it’s summer.”
“And when I’m with you,” you mumble and look at him with a smile. Jungkook cups your cheek and presses his lips to yours. And even though the kiss lasts mere seconds, you feel the same sparks ricochet through your body like when you first kissed him. He’s still every star and moon in this world, still summer, autumn, winter, and spring. He’s still everything. And you know, that will never change.
“And when I’m with you too.”
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→ links don’t work, but i’d love to hear your thoughts/feedback! thanks for reading !!
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2K notes · View notes
marvelousbangtan · a month ago
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the cutest human being ♡︎
986 notes · View notes
moon-write · 6 months ago
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i can’t wait to tell you, ‘i told ya.’
summary: Jeon Jungkook is a successful realtor with a big house, nice car, colorful dating life, and a spunky 7-year-old daughter to boot...he’s also your best friend who you used to be in love with. Of course, he was never made aware because you swear it’s all in the past...until it isn’t. But going on a cruise with Jungkook and his daughter whom you adore should be harmless. Absolutely nothing can go wrong...Right?
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pairing: jeon jungkook x reader genre: fluff, angst, crack, idiots [i say that with luv for my characters] word count: 16.2k  rating: pg-13 tags/warnings: singledad!Jungkook, bestfriend!Reader, a child [Mai] is present throughout the entire story, implication of absent birth mother, serial dater JK, so much pining, pg cussing like three times, conversation about sleeping around/risking pregnancy, legal-aged drinking and getting drunk, hurtful words, heated argument, isolation, blurb about reader struggling to eat, Mai experiences anxiety [I promise she is okay]..kind of a tongue kiss, lots of cheesey…much fluff and angst all because muster JK wrecked me
credits: the picture of JK is from tearleaves blog [literally love their blog sm] I made the banner [I am not a graphics profesh smh]
Thank you to the realest one, @hyungieyoongi, for not only wanting to beta-read this insanity for me when I enlisted her for help but for hyping me up while doing it. Her editing gave this story clarity ;; I will only allow myself to be bias-wrecked by Yoongi if it’s coming from you :p
a/n: I have to make this disclaimer just due to the warnings above; the portrayal of Jungkook in this story is purely fictional and does not reflect who he is in real life nor do I claim to believe it does. Also, this story is not apart of my dad!bts series, it actually follows his summer scenario. GUYS. I wish I was kidding when I say that this story was simply created because I was under the influence of sowoozoo/muster JK. I am so beyond excited to share this cracked out fic with you, I truly hope you all enjoy it and just have fun reading it. Please drop a line to let me know what you think! It would mean the world honestly. ok les get it~
sequel | baby if i fall, i wanna land right in your bed
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“You’re doing a great job, Jungkook,” you pat his tattooed arm.
Jungkook looks back at the drawing, giggling to himself. Caught in his stupor and the innocence of his daughter, he comes to, looking at you; “these last seven years would have gone a lot differently if we didn’t have you though.”
7 years ago. “It’s okay,” the sound of the newborn’s shrill cries drown out your voice. Following the same pattern around the living room, you try your best to soothe her, stealing glances of Jungkook who’s sat at the edge of his sofa. Clumps of his hair gathered between fisted palms, he’s never looked so defeated.
“Let’s try feeding her again,” you stand in front of him, hand reaching for the bottle next to him. Too caught in the frantic cry of his baby daughter, he doesn’t hear you.
“Jungkook,” your tone is stern and you nudge his foot with yours, “you can’t give up, get it together and give me her bottle, please.”
He does as you say, his eyes wide as he looks at his daughter for the first time since you arrived. You press the rubber tip to Mai’s lips, allowing a drop of the warm formula to touch her lips, “come on.” You almost beg her. Her cry breaks for a moment as the milk drips onto her tongue, “there you go,” laughter coats the nervous tremble in your voice this time.
You allow a couple more drops to fall onto her tongue until Mai’s cries stop, her breathing staggered as she takes to the bottle, “see?” You can’t help but giggle, looking up at Jungkook. Eyes brimmed with tears of frustration, he watches in shock while Mai sucks on the bottle. Small puffs of air escaping her nose.
“Use the rag on my shoulder to wipe her face, will you?” You ask him and he does just so, dabbing at Mai’s red cheeks, ridding her of her tears.
“I tried everything the last hour to get her to stop,” he whispers. You can see the disappointment in his eyes though he continues to marvel at the innocence wrapped in your arms. You watch as your best friend takes Mai’s foot in his hand, barely squeezing her toes before he moves his hand back to her head, rubbing her barely-there hair as far back as he can.
“Here,” you gesture for Jungkook to take his daughter and he steps back in fright. You chuckle, “you have to get used to holding her Kook, I won’t be here all the time.”
“Why?” He looks at you with all sincerity.
You shake your head, “she’s safe in your arms, come on.”
He tosses the rag aside and holds his arms out. Mai fusses during the exchange, Jungkook shushing her in gentle breaths while securing her into his chest; “just hold the bottle upright-yeah,” you help him adjust to her, cradling his large hand behind her head while her tiny body rests along his arm.
He stands straight as a pin, fear taking up most of his expression as he looks down on his feeding daughter.
“Is this the first time you’re holding her?” You ask.
He gives you a look that can only mean yes, “my mom handled her these last 3 weeks,” he shakes his head, embarrassed to admit, “I was too scared.”
A soft laugh escapes you, “how’s it feeling now?”
“Still scary,” he says seriously, “but I never want to put her down again.”
You stand back, watching him take all of her in. A month ago your best friend had it all together; living a bachelor lifestyle his friends envied, had a stellar career as the most sought out realtor, fancy modern home…He was a free man who could do whatever, whenever.
That was until one drunken decision in the past came back 9 months later in the form of a new born baby.
Swaying back and forth with a slight strain in his movement, Jungkook watches Mai’s drooping lids; “can I do this?” He asks in a dream-like state leaving you to wonder if he is seeking the answer. That is until he moves his eyes to see you, you shrug with a pitied smile.
“You love her, right?”
He frowns for a second, nodding without hesitation.
“Then you can do it, Jungkook.”
“I’d offer for you to stay for dinner but you probably have another date with what’s-his-name,” Jungkook closes the sliding glass door behind you two, sweeping Mai into his arms. The three of you make your way into the kitchen where he sets his daughter on the counter, inspecting her hands to make sure she’s cleaned them properly.
He playfully sniffs them before kissing her palms.
“For the thousandth time, his name is Mark, and no actually,” you laugh watching the two tease each other back and forth, Jungkook’s attention split between the two of you, “I don’t think that’s happening anymore.”
He stands upright, covering Mai’s ears which only sends her into a fit of giggles. Too young to care for adult talk anyway.
“Bad kisser? I knew it,” he shakes his head while moving Mai’s from side to side. Belly laughs erupt from her small body asking her dad to stop.
“Shut up,” you laugh, rolling your eyes. He chuckles, removing his hands from Mai and kissing her forehead.
You sit at the end of the long dining table next to Mai, Jungkook at the head of the table as usual. He finishes reading Mai’s fortune before they look at you.
“Your turn!” Mai shouts, holding a single noodle between her trainer chopsticks.
The cookie crumbles between your fingers, you unroll the small strip of paper, clearing your throat; “an old love will come back to you.”
Jungkook dramatically ooh's and Mai follows, her small lips shaped into the perfect circle. Victim to Mai’s purity you squeeze her nose, “who could that be?” You tease her.
“Not me,” she giggles, “maybe daddy, he’s old!”
You fall back into your chair, eyes brimming with tears as you hold onto your belly full of Chinese food, laughing at the expense of your best friend.
“Funny,” he tries not to laugh, stuffing the remains of his fortune cookie into his mouth.
Chirping crickets and a black sky surround Jungkook’s home. You listen to the sound echo up into the vaulted ceilings, looking out of the opened windows. Taken by the quiet that surrounds this place, you shut your eyes and bask in it until the sound of Jungkook’s feet shuffles down the hallway.
“I don’t know whose good side I am on,” he sighs with relief, grabbing his glass of wine on the way to the sofa, “but she falls asleep like that.” He snaps his fingers.
You smile, peeling your attention away from the window.
Now dressed in his favorite wear, baggy clothes that swallow up his svelte build, Jungkook takes a generous sip from his glass before patting the space next to him, “so, tell me what’s wrong with this guy?”
You stop on your way to the sofa, eyebrows raised with sarcasm, “let’s cut the attitude, yeah?”
He can’t help but laugh, moving his leg when you finally sit down, “joking,” he reassures you, “but I mean, this is the third guy you’ve rejected and I didn’t even get to meet him.”
You shrug, “like you really wanted to?” Quirking an eyebrow at him Jungkook can’t seem to look at you, laughing into his wine glass; “who’s worse here? You’ve always had at least one thing to complain about every guy I’ve brought around.”
“Mai and I have a preliminary process when it comes to guys you date,” he shrugs, licking a stray drop of wine before it can drip onto his sweatpants.
“Yes because a 7-year old has a lot to say about adults and dating,” you chuckle, pushing Jungkook’s shoulder, “anyway, you aren’t missing out on anything Kook - and besides, I don’t want to introduce people into your and Mai’s lives until I’m sure about them this time.”
Jungkook’s playfulness dies off, the wine in his glass not as interesting as the sullen look forming on your face. He watches you, the way you bend forward, one side of your hair tucked behind your ear while you anxiously pick at your cuticles.
He nudges your knee with his so you can look at him, a reassuring smile awaiting you, “that last guy fooled us all, okay?”
You sigh as a way to say, ‘it’s forgotten…no big deal…whatever…’ but Jungkook knows it’s a stain you’ve struggled to rid of for a while; “he’s been out of my life for a long time and that’s all that matters,” you stiffen your upper lip.
“Mm, cheers to that,” he clicks his glass against your water bottle, “but seriously, can I ask you something?”
You brace yourself, nodding.
“Except for that trash bag, you always seem to find a flaw in every guy you date,” Jungkook stalls for a second, reading your temperament before continuing, “why?”
Your eyes crinkle, suddenly underneath a spotlight, “do I?”
Jungkook resorts to his scrunch-nosed laugh, “are you kidding?”
“Well, okay Mr. Dating-expert,” you cross one leg over the other taking on a new defense, “you don’t find enough flaws in the women lined up outside of your house everyday-why?”
He nearly spat out his wine, setting the glass down with hands surrendered to the air, “false accusation, you know I don’t bring women back here because of Mai-”
“Okay okay, you’re right, I’m sorry,” you soothe.
He laughs, “but fair enough, I guess we both don’t have the best track record when it comes to dating.”
You stand up, pulling your bag over your shoulder, “I hate to agree since it concerns me too.”
Jungkook walks you to the front door, “I’m curious to find out who this ‘old love’ is,” you turn just as he wiggles his eyebrows at you. You force a smile with squinted eyes, “do you know me at all, Jeon? I don’t believe in fortunes, remember?”
He gives you a quick hug, watching you walk the path to your car; “I can’t wait to prove you wrong,” he shouts from the door.
You wave him off, “yeah yeah save the love spiel for another time, goodnight!”
On your drive home, absent in mind, you rake your fingers through your hair. The bright glow of the red traffic light casts over you when you come to a full stop. ‘An old love will come back to you.’ You snort at the thought; they are simply typed words on a piece of paper. It means nothing.
“You don’t believe in stupid fortunes,’” you sing into the void of your car.
But it still makes your stomach queasy. Heart palpitating in your chest while your palm becomes sweaty as you ring it around the steering wheel.
“Let’s not go back there shall we?”
“Hello? What do you mean no big deal?” Nic’s voice is a clear call into the late night, earning herself a stern look from you. “Whisper please,” you hissed through your teeth, “Mai never sleeps well when Jungkook is away, it was hell getting her down tonight.”
Nic looks at you with wily eyes, spinning every which way you turn before she gets dizzy; “stop moving will you?”
In a huff to clean up Mai’s after-dinner doodle session-crayons strewn across the table and several drawings made as gifts for her dad’s return from a work trip, you look at her with exasperation painted on your face, “it’s literally what I mean Nic.”
She blinks in rapid-fire, sitting down on the ottoman while you work around the dining room. “So I’m crazy, okay yeah. Because telling me that you’re in love with your best friend of a million years is totally normal.”
You shudder at how easily those words come out of Nic’s mouth while Jungkook’s daughter sleeps in your bed. Too young to understand anyway, you can’t help but want to protect Mai from this very sensitive information about her dad.
Nic rolls her eyes, “oh relax, she’s asleep now. I’m spiraling over here, okay?”
“Just come on,” you hit the side of your leg with the cleaning rag, desperate to get your point across, “discretion, please? This is not information I want to be tossed around.”
“How long have you felt this way?” She watches you in your haste, cleaning every speck left on the table in an attempt to avoid the conversation. You’re steeped in regret for even mentioning it to Nic. It was a confession you never intended anyone to know about. It just came out.
“I don’t know,” you groan, disappearing into the kitchen before returning with washed hands and deadpan eyes.
Nic twists around the ottoman to face you when you come around, plopping yourself on the sofa.
“That’s a lie,” she states the obvious.
The popcorn texture of your ceiling suddenly becomes interesting when you toss your head back. I need to get my ceilings smoothed. You think to yourself while Nic waits. She won’t back down.
“I remember the exact moment I fell in love with him,” you sigh, tossing your hands up only to bring them back down on the cushions. You sit upright and look at Nic, “but it’s futile to even detail that because it’s never going to happen.”
“Do you want it to? I mean really want it to? Because he has a kid…”
Eyebrows knit together, you both have to laugh at that.
“I mean, you know, getting with Jungkook means taking on a child- although worthy to mention, one who adores you-”
“Please, don’t make me hurt more,” you press the pads of your fingers over your shut eyes, “I can’t even fathom how much it would confuse her-and I won’t entertain this past today. I can’t.”
“You’ve obviously been holding onto this for a long time-”
“And it ends today. Jungkook is my best friend, I vowed myself to be here for him and Mai as his friend, that’s it.”
“Okay, and when he finds a suitable woman and falls in love with her, then what?”
You can’t help the sadness that comes crashing down in your chest, eyes piercing through Nic, “ouch.”
“I’m sorry,” she takes on a new look of pity, leaning forward, “but that’s the reality, isn’t it? If you aren’t willing to-”
“Willing to what Nic? Confess to Jungkook and ruin our friendship? Ruin my relationship with Mai?” You snap back.
“How can you assume he doesn’t feel the same?” Nic rebuttals.
You shake your head, “it’s not happening.”
That was 2 years ago. A night you remember all too clearly but push away along with the feelings steaming inside of you- chewed up and swallowed only to return from time to time like a bad case of acid reflux.
You scoff at the fortune bouncing around in your head, “not happening.”
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“What are we shopping for exactly?” Nic comes up next to you, raking through the neutral-toned tops with not much of a care to what she is seeing.
“Um,” you pick out two tank tops and hold them up against you-
Nic gives you a thumbs up.
“Uh, that cruise I’m going on next month-didn’t we talk about it?”
“Oh yeah, wait-who are you going with and why was I not invited?” She queries, noting the way you move swiftly toward the dressing rooms.
You chuckle, “I didn’t plan this trip, I was invited,” you shut the door to the changing room before Nic can follow you in. She leans against it, quirking an eyebrow, “cheeky,” she laughs, “who invited you?”
She listens to you mull over your choices, hearing your feet shuffle on the carpet floor; “uh, Jungkook did.”
You are immediately met with silence, peeking at the bottom of the mirror where her feet reflect, turning to face the door, “come again- you failed to mention this is a romantic getaway with your best friend-”
Opening the door, Nic nearly falls in when you catch her, rolling your eyes, “have you always been this dramatic?”
She shrugs, “one of us has to be but back to my question.”
“Not a romantic getaway, Mai is coming and-”
“Wh-like a family vacation-”
“Nic!” Your jaw sets and she zips up quickly, “his parents are also going, okay?”
Your friend blinks and you give her a look that wills away any sarcastic comment she has at the ready. You have to hand it to her, she’s a witty one; “besides it’s kind of a company cruise for him, all the employees are allowed to bring guests, okay?”
“Noted,” she purses her lips.
“Okay, just answer one thing for me,” you’re already sighing before she gets to it once at the car, tossing your bags in the back before getting into the driver’s seat with Nic buckled up and raring to go; “have you worked through all of that- you know, your feelings?”
You nod, “for the most part.” Nic drops her forehead into her hands, kneading away at her temples and you have to laugh, “okay, yes I have, is that better?”
“If you weren’t such a bad liar, yeah it would be!” Nic tentatively shoves your shoulder, laughing with you, “how do you manage it because I sure as hell could not.”
You relax for a moment coming to a red light, “Mai is number one here, how she feels matters first-”
“That is very noble of you, but hello, you’re human too,” Nic adds with pointed inflect, “and I can’t believe I’m saying this but Jungkook should know better, inviting you to family functions like the three of you are a family before he runs off with some random-”
“Nic,” you send a wavering look her way, “I don’t mind watching Mai when I have the time, I love that kid almost like-” you startle yourself, “I just love her, alright? I don’t mind it.”
Nic shakes her head when you turn away, your eyes set back on the road. An uneasy feeling settles inside of her, wondering how you’d managed to lie into believing all of that; “I’m sorry that was out of pocket but look, you know I care about you. I know he does too I just think he’s a little blind and it’s hurting you-”
“I’m fine,” you practically sing.
“It will hurt you eventually if you keep pretending like this,” Nic flattens her tone.
“I said I am fine,” you drawl for emphasis, “anyway, it’s Sunday which means dinner at their house-” you look at her knowing she has a smirk waiting for you. You both look at each other on instinct, eyes squinted at one another, “so I am inviting you to come with, okay?”
You both laugh; “yeah whatever, I’ll join your weird not-family-tradition for tonight.”
Sunday dinner with the Jeons proceeds as usual given the extra guest. Nic prides herself on where she can observe the oddities of your friendship with Jungkook and his daughter. Even she, sworn to never birth children herself, can't help the fluttering of her ovaries as she watches the camaraderie built between you and Jungkook's daughter. Mai teasingly stiffens her upper lip, shoving her face near yours while a goofy voice bellows out of her. You roll your eyes at her, laughing before attacking her sides with tickling fingers.
It’s a smile on Jungkook’s face that Nic hasn’t seen before. Spending many a night out with the two of you and friends, she’s used to the suave Jungkook she’s seen at clubs. The way he talks to women, motions for them, how he sticks his tongue out just enough for flirtatious emphasis when he’s curled up with one. His ego is seen clear across the dance floor; Nic is sure her face is turning green at the very thought of it.
“Alright goob,” Jungkook stretches, “it’s late-”
“Dad,” Mai whines, clinging on to you. You hide your laugh, noting the way she tries to fight her sleepiness in front of him.
He shakes his head, “it’s a school night Mai- bathroom - brush your teeth, now.”
You can’t help but feel sorry for her, catching her pitiful stare that has so fittingly fallen on you, you chuckle, “come on, I’ll tuck you in afterward.”
With that little bit of incentive, Mai jumps off the couch, quick to slouch when she passes by her dad for added flare, meekly waving goodbye at Nic before she disappears down the hallway; “be right back,” you call to them, following Mai’s very sad trail into the darkness.
Nic sighs, eyes quick to find Jungkook, “so-” her smile flattens when he finally looks at her.
“So?” He adds eyes slit in wonder. Nic has always been the wild card with a fiery tongue.
She widens her grin, “I hear you and your family are going on a cruise.”
He just nods, smiling into his glass before taking a drink, “she’s coming too.”
“I mean that was implied-” Nic snorts, “that’s sweet.”
Jungkook chuckles, catching the sarcastic look in Nic’s eyes, “what are you on about?”
“Jeon Jungkook you are clue-”
“She was falling asleep while brushing her teeth,” you come out with a hushed laugh, “practically had to carry her into bed.”
Jungkook tears his eyes from Nic, both friends staring at you before they force a laugh. You shrug it off, grabbing your things along with Nic’s who meets you at the door. Jungkook follows, his hands shoved inside of his pockets.
“Thanks for letting me tag along,” Nic picks up her voice, accepting Jungkook’s hug before walking to the car and getting in.
You turn back to him with eyebrows raised and he shrugs.
“Okay, well I’m going to be pretty busy with work the next few weeks, they want overtime since I’ll be gone on the cruise- god-” Jungkook laughs while you struggle to get your arm in the sleeve of your jacket; “the sleeve is twisted-here,’ he says, pulling it out and holding it straight for you.
“I guess we’ll see you at the ship then,” he adds.
You nod, “night, Jeon.”
He smiles at you, bending forward to wave at Nic who offers him a short smile; “text me when you get home.”
As always, you wave to him without a second look.
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“Did dad receive the confirmation for your parking spot,” Jungkook said while walking to his car after showing a house, swinging his keys around his pointer finger, “it has all the information on where you guys will park your car at the port.”
“He did- what about you, will you be doing the same?” Mrs. Jeon then asks about you, “how will she get there?”
He can’t help but giggle, his ever-curious mother always wondering about you, worrying about a task may just be a little too inconvenient for you, “you should pick her up really.”
Jungkook settles into his car, a playful eye roll following his mother’s assumptions, “I am mom, don’t worry, she’s taken care of.”
“Good,” a sigh of relief can be heard on his end, “how is she anyway, we haven’t seen her since Mai’s little choir performance.”
“Slow down, yeah?” Jungkook chuckles, “she’s busy too but good, I think anyway. She came over Sunday for dinner-”
“As usual,” Mrs. Jeon snickers to herself, “why don’t you bring her over here for dinner once in a while son? I would like to see her too.”
“You really want that?” He arches an eyebrow.
Mrs. Jeon clicks her tongue, “you say that like she hasn’t been an important part of Mai’s life since she was born Jungkook-ah; of course, I want to see her.”
“Oh,” he pouts, thinking it over, “well with the cruise we have many dinners to catch up you can make up for lost time then.”
“Mhm,” he can hear the smirk on his mom’s face, “she deserves a break, you know?”
Jungkook nods as if visible to his mom, “she does.”
“Between her work and then watching Mai, you keep her busy.”
Jungkook frowns, “you make it sound like I’m forcing her to come to the house to see my daughter, she comes in on her free time- whenever she pleases.”
“Ok ok,” his mother’s gentle laugh he can remember so clearly from childhood eases out of her, “I just worry she’ll think otherwise.”
“I’m sure she doesn’t mom,” Jungkook sighs.
“Anyway, that’s what dad and I are there for. To spend time with our granddaughter and give you two some free time to do whatever-”
“Well, some family time would be nice too, but I appreciate it- we appreciate it.”
Jungkook ends the call as he is pulling into his driveway. Like clockwork, Mai’s school bus arrives at the corner. He steps out and waves to the bus driver when they drive off before Mai comes running down the sidewalk and into his arms.
“Hey, dad!” She wraps her arms around his neck, kissing his cheek to which he purposefully stuck out for her.
“You’re getting big, bean,” he groans, faking a backache while setting her down. He rests his hand atop her head while Mai talks about her day, hanging her backpack for her before the two trail into the kitchen.
“Your muscles aren’t so strong anymore then,” Mai quips, tossing a quick shoulder shrug her dad’s way when he turns back from the refrigerator to glare at her.
“Smart-alec,” he mutters, tossing a small tangerine at her. She dodges it and sticks her tongue out at him, screeching when he makes a run for her. With several feet in height on his daughter, Jungkook snatches her in no top, throwing her over his shoulder and tickling her sides.
Jovial screams and giggles leap out of the little girl until he tosses her on the sofa, her dark hair a wild mess and cheeks red, “not fair dad, you’re still bigger,” she pouts suddenly. Jungkook leans over the couch, laughing while swiping Mai’s hair out of her face, pinching her cheek in the process, “what do you want to eat for dinner, kid? Ordering in tonight.”
Mai jumps up in excitement, shouting your name.
He laughs, pulling his phone out to peruse a menu to order from, “not tonight- I have a work dinner, so you’ll be-”
“Not a babysitter-dad!” Mai whines, stomping her feet toward him, “I don’t want a babysitter, they aren’t as fun as she is.”
He shrugs, taking her chin in his hand and squeezing it, “sorry babe, she’s busy tonight.”
“Fine, whatever,” Mai turns in one swift motion and disappears into the den, homework in hand. Jungkook shakes his head, wondering when his 7-year-old became such a teenager.
With aching feet and a dull throbbing that is teetering into a headache, you welcome the darkness of your apartment, choosing to sit at the breakfast nook in silence.
“Is it time to retire yet?” You want to cry like a baby, be coddled like one, and rocked to sleep. Just then the ding from your phone pulls you from your minute misery; a text message.
Mark: Okay, I’m going to level with you, should I stop trying? This is the third time in the last two weeks you’ve canceled our date…
You purse your lips, re-reading Mark’s message while the conversation you had with Jungkook weeks ago looms in the back of your mind.
‘Always something wrong with every guy you date…’
You shake your head, that’s not true. Mark is a very sweet guy. Kind of introverted in a big group but alone, he’s all about you. He treats you well and as much as Jungkook wants to tease you about it- Mark isn’t a bad kisser!
You sigh as you tap away at the keyboard.
You: I’m sorry Mark…I should learn to be more forthcoming right away.
Mark: come on I’m a grown man, I can handle rejection haha
You smile, warmed by Mark’s playful attitude.
You: Is it worse if I say that you are a great friend? Because you really are.
Mark: it stings but you’re good, I’ll find some way to get over you
You: Don’t make it worse >< but seriously Mark, you’ve been good to me these last few months, it’s nothing personal.
Mark: you deserve it and I’m sure the guy knows it already
Your eyes widen.
You: Sorry? What are you talking about lol
Mark: okay I’m not stupid either haha every time we were together and that kid called or her dad, you dropped everything to talk to them. Rubbing salt in my wound here, but didn’t you leave our date once to be with her?
You: Right…He’s my best friend…and his daughter? Well yeah, I would do anything for her. So I can’t apologize for that, but this is even more proof that you are a great guy!
Mark: hahaha, ok I got it, I have to say this is the least demoralizing way any woman has rejected me
You: You’re welcome? Haha, have a good night Mark (:
It couldn’t have gone any better, the guilt over Mark that settled in your stomach was now gone, but you couldn’t figure why it didn’t make you feel better.
Mark is smart but he was wrong. Well…maybe answering Mai’s phone call that one night while you and Mark were hooking up was a bit excessive? You cringe at the thought…
Peeling yourself from those memories and the barstool proves easier when your incentive is to no longer question what everyone around you seems to have common knowledge of. Pouring water into a steel pot, you set it on the stove to boil for some ramen.
Not long after your meal is done does your phone ring with the Jeons’ home number flashing across the screen; “Bean?” You answer, knowing it’s Mai since Jungkook only calls you from his cell phone.
You are greeted with an exasperated huff before she whispers harshly into the phone, “why didn’t you come watch me tonight?”
Choosing to eat straight from the pot because it was one of those days, you bring it into the living room, a grimace on your face, “sorry? I told your dad I’d be busy with work since we’re all going on vacation soon.”
“Oh, well, I don’t like this babysitter, she treats me like a little kid,” you almost choke on your first bite of noodles, stifling a laugh at Mai’s dispense.
“Okay one- you are a kid and two- be nice, three- where is your dad?”
Mai scoffs with gusto into the phone, “work dinner,” she emphasizes the word, “dad thinks I’m a dummy, I know he’s on a date.”
Your heart drops and with it goes your appetite, setting the half-eaten food down on your coffee table. You move the phone away for a moment, allowing yourself time to let out the longest breath before moving back, “how do you know that, you know your dad is a busy guy, he goes on plenty of work dinners.”
“Hm- again I’m smart, dad says he is going on company dinners when it’s actually with work people,” Mai’s tone is flippant, “but when it’s a date? He calls them ‘work dinners.’”
“Oh right,” you curse yourself for having this adult conversation with a child, “duh.”
Mai laughs, “dad has been going on a lot of work dinners-”
You clam your eyes shut, “y-you know what bean, I’m sorry but I’m exhausted- are you in any immediate danger that requires me to come over there?
“No,” Mai drawls, “I guess not.”
Even with the unsettling of your heart, Mai always manages to melt you to your core, “you sure?”
“Dad would be mad if I made you come here, I’m okay, I just miss you I guess,” her voice suddenly drops, the little kid is back. The innocence you love so much about her pulls you.
“I miss you too,” you say, “but hey- the cruise is coming up soon, okay? You’ll have your grandparents, your dad-”
“And you, duh,” she adds.
You shake your head, chuckling, “and me.”
After talking her through her irritation and simply missing the two people that are her entire world, Mai hangs up a little more satisfied.
You? You call it an early night, ignoring the dreaded feeling hanging from your heartstrings.
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You aren’t sure how to feel once you wake up on the first day of vacation. Having lost sleep over the last week while bitterly packing for the cruise, you thought up several ways you could cancel. Picking up your phone on several occasions to text Jungkook telling him of the news only to picture Mai’s disappointment. Maybe even a shed tear or two at your expense.
Finally the night before, you swallowed back your pride and zipped up your packed suitcase which was now sitting in the back of Jungkook’s trunk with the rest of their things. He and Mai sang along to a song while you tapped your hand against your leg, unable to keep the smile away from your face for long.
Mrs. Jeon greeted you eagerly after smothering Mai in kisses, taking the three of you ahead of the men as you entered the ship.
“Home for the next week,” Jungkook came up from behind and put his arm around you, pressing his palm into Mai’s hair and messing with it while she tried to fight him off. You move away from him and walk towards the elevators, “shall we settle in our rooms?”
Mai was the first to react, running toward you and grabbing your hand in the process before the rest followed.
Once in the rooms with Jungkook’s parents only a few doors down from your suite, Mai pops in and out of the door connecting your room to theirs, “we can have sleepovers every night!” She cheers.
You shake your head, laughing at her excitement while still marveling at the size of your room alone. Jungkook comes in from your balcony, pressing two fingers against Mai’s forehead when she comes throttling through once more, “relax monster,” he chuckles, “and I don’t know about every night, okay?”
“Okay, but at least when you go on work dinners,” Mai peers passed Jungkook’s hip at you making a face too devilish for a child, “I can sleep in her room?”
You’re glad the bed is there to catch you. Jungkook shrugs at Mai’s question, looking back at you, “up to you.”
You have to swallow back that all too familiar sickness, “of course kiddo.” She leaps forward in glee, wrapping her arms around Jungkook’s legs. You watch the two of them dance around your room, Mai standing on top of Jungkook’s feet while they tease each other; “duck feet,” Mai says, proceeding to quack at her father.
“Do you uh- have to work while we’re here?” You ask Jungkook. He sticks his bottom lip out and shakes his head, “nope, just one brunch with a few colleagues but it won’t be long.”
You despise the relief that immediately washes over you.
Switching into vacation mode proves a lot easier than you anticipated, given the new information Mai shared with you during that eyesore of a phone call. You hate to admit it to yourself, but seeing Jungkook stick around for the first days provides relief for you that he is in fact, not going on any work dinners this trip.
Shut up shut up shut UP…
Your thoughts nudge at your brain while you sit poolside, taking a break from carrying Mai around on your shoulders like a mermaid- per her request. You were her throne and she the mermaid princess of an undersea world, Jungkook the villainous merman out to seek her crown. After a victorious battle against said merman, you urge Mai to continue playing with her dad when she starts to whine.
Watching them is almost better.
A smile beams across your face like a shooting star, sitting back to hold yourself together, barking with laughter when Jungkook throws Mai into the air. A shriek of excitement falls with her until she lands safely in a splash. A big one.
Jungkook’s squeaky voice raptures you and you look over to find his head tossed back, perfect teeth showing as he laughs with every part of his being- eyes closed, the only visible part of his face is the happiness he is feeling.
Your heart beats faster, cheeks growing hotter but not from the sun. Like the kind of gasp that escapes you during a jump scare in a horror movie, a memory locked so deep floods your head. You lower the brim of your hat to hide the immediate tears that flood your eyes, relieved to see Jungkook and Mai continue to chase each other around the pool, making waves while splashing one another.
It was a long day, Jungkook enlisted your help with a colicky baby in need. You read up on as many articles as you could before heading over, finding him in a panic though he was trying to repress it for the time being.
With much effort on both ends, Mai was finally asleep after hours of fussing. Jungkook, desperate for his daughter’s relief to the point of tears, decided to leave them alone in his bedroom while you claimed a spot on the couch. Waking up hours later, the sun is long gone, you head to his bedroom to say goodbye.
The door is still open and you find Jungkook laying on his side with his back to you, instead of sleeping like you initially assumed, he is humming. One hand rests under his head while the other moves in an up and down motion. You stand on your tiptoes and see Mai is still asleep, laid out on her back with her limbs sticking out, you cover your mouth to stifle a chuckle.
She looks angelic- long eyelashes tickling the tops of her chubby cheeks, you can even hear her heavy breathing beyond Jungkook’s soft hum.
“Is it possible to be this in love?” His voice captures your ears but it’s a welcome sound. You can’t see his face but you’re sure he’s near to tears once more. Pushing off of the wall, you walk to the edge of the bed. Jungkook’s eyes darted to you, dropping his head, silently laughing at himself.
You pat his ankle, a chummy smile covering your face only to tease him, “I’m heading home, you two will be okay?”
He looks back at Mai before nodding, “thank you,” he sighs before moving out of bed but you try to stop him, assuring him that you can make it to the door alone and in one piece.
“When do I ever let you walk out alone?” He whispers, kissing Mai’s cheek before carefully moving off the bed. He follows you to the front door. When you turn to wish him and Mai a full night’s rest, he swallows you in a hug. You stand stiff for a moment, unable to recall if this was something that ever occurred before. You weren’t the bear-hugging type of friend.
Even more, you can feel your heart thrum against Jungkook’s and suddenly it becomes natural as you melt into his hold. You wrap your arms around his middle to which he pulls you closer and tighter.
Eyes closed, the feeling of being in his arms is overwhelming and cheesy as it may be, you have to will the tears away because it all comes flooding over you. Every over-thought you’d wondered up to this moment is answered.
‘Am I falling for him? No…wait.
Do I love my best friend?’
“We love you,” Jungkook says close to your ear, shaking you from your thoughts, but with them are the crackings of your heart, “I don’t say that enough,” he adds. He finally releases you and you have to pull yourself together in a second.
“Jungkook, I told you I’d be here for you and Mai- no question.” You manage to say, clearing your throat.
Walking away from his house that night, you know for you, it’s all changed.
A shrill cry of your name jolts you awake, cold water splashing your midriff. Your eyes focus back and on Mai who is now sitting on Jungkook’s shoulders, “let’s race,” she says. Without hesitance you jump in after them, pulling a giggling Mai into the pool with you who begs for mercy.
After a warm shower, sleep proves victor over the book Mai insisted you read before bed. By the time you washed up and changed into fresh pajamas, Mai’s face was planted into Jungkook’s pillow, hair splayed across the white pillowcase.
Jungkook hears you chuckle from his place on the balcony, turning to look over his shoulder just as you kiss Mai’s head. The flutter in his chest moves a lot like the smoothing rock of the boat.
“She’s going to need an entire week alone to recuperate after this trip,” you come out and sit on the bench with him, drawing your legs up and holding them to your chest. Jungkook’s silence makes you curious, but when you look over, the look on his face tells you why.
Brows are set straight and his arms crossed in front of his chest, you can see every thought run through his mind. Instead of pegging him with a question, you tap his leg with your foot. He takes a sharp breath in, looking at you and laughing at himself.
“I was just thinking,” he groans, moving forward and resting his face in his hands. Your heart crawls out of your chest in search of a way to soothe your best friend, yet all the same, you just want to hold him.
“It’s weird to think back on 21 when I was convinced I was this big hotshot with a realtor’s license and brand new BMW,” he laughs in shame, “ah- then all of a sudden there’s this helpless baby who I had no time to prepare for.”
You remember that time with him; recalling the day Jungkook called you to his then apartment, voice too shaken to explain why he needed you there to return a missed call from the local hospital. Of course, your mind assumed he was diagnosed with some kind of illness. But with the phone on speaker, so you could hear it, you watched the color drain from his face as child protective services spoke to him on the other end. Words are thrown around like fireballs- ‘your name was put on the birth certificate by her birth mother Mr. Jeon…a DNA test has been ordered, we will need you to come down to the clinic to complete it, for now, the infant will be placed with our services upon release from the hospital.’
‘No,’ he was quick to respond, ‘no don’t do that please, I’ll bring her home. Can-can I bring her home?’
“You didn’t need that test to prove otherwise,” you add, watching the way your best friend runs his hands back and forth through his hair. He took the test anyway and it was of course confirmed that Mai was his; “when you called me over, I couldn’t imagine what they would say and that was definitely the farthest thing from my mind.
“Wouldn’t change it for the world now that I know I’m a capable dad but-” his confidence drops and you sit forward, bending your head until you can see his face.
“But what?” You ask.
“Any chance at falling in love is out the window-” you can hear the guilt in his voice when he says that. He sits back and you follow, keeping your eyes on him. He chuckles with a crooked grin, “what?”
“Why do you do that? It doesn’t hurt you?”
He sighs, looking back at the water, “it’s easier, isn’t it? Sleeping around rather than risking a broken heart?”
“Jungkook, Mai’s moth-she was foolish for leaving you and even more for leaving Mai-I mean let’s not forget she, herself never even told you about your child in the first place-”
“Yeah but I’m still an idiot for even going there with her, I knew all she wanted was something casual and I gave it to her just so I could feel something.” He shakes his head.
“But one really good thing came out of that, right?” You push, taking your fingers and nudging his chin to force a smile on his face. He doesn’t argue that, thinking of the little girl that is sound asleep inside.
A quiet hum settles inside of your chest drawing Jungkook to look at you. Your eyes set on the moonlight reflecting against the water; “god, I love your kid Jungkook.” Just looking at your smile when you turn to face him, it’s a sight that nestles deep inside of his chest; “I knew I would before you even brought her back but I swear, my heart can’t take how much I love Mai.”
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The gentle rock of the boat lulls you into an awake sleep, chilly ocean air creating goosebumps over your skin. Jungkook watches you for a moment, noticing the slight chatter in your teeth. Your eyes pop open when you feel his arm around you, pulling you to him; “what are you doing?”
He laughs at the drawl in your sleepy voice, “you’re shivering and falling asleep, I don’t want you hitting your head if you fall over.”
You look at him with inquisitive blinks before he continues to pull you to him, giving in once his warmth envelops you. He lowers himself enough so you can rest your head comfortably on his shoulder, keeping your arm wrapped around your legs.
“Just so you know because I know how my kid is,” Jungkook’s voice sounds like a subtle purr, “she loves you too.”
Caught in a haze of exhaustion and more emotion than your heart can handle, you nuzzle your head deeper into Jungkook’s shoulder, allowing yourself to fall asleep with those sentiments in mind. On the cusp of a deep sleep, you swear you feel Jungkook press his lips to the top of your head
When you wake up in the morning, you’re immediately aware this is not your bed though it isn’t entirely unfamiliar. Heart launched into your throat, you sat up on your elbows, eyes pressed shut.
Okay now!
They pop open and it is confirmed that you are in Jungkook and Mai’s room. But worries of spending the night in the same bed with your best friend are settled when you see Mai is at your side. Her long raven hair strung across her face.
Chances are high that Jungkook carried you to his bed, but that’s neither here nor there.
A snore causes you to jump, looking over at its source. Awakened by his own snore, Jungkook looks at you with one eye, his body contorted to the size of the narrow cot meant for Mai. His feet dangling off the edge.
“You could have slept in my bed,” you snort.
He sits up, the sheet falling off to reveal his rippled chest and abs. You’ve seen his muscles several times, but the setting is far too intimate this time, you have to look away, pulling Mai’s hair off of her face. Jungkook stands and stretches before making his way to the bathroom, “it was nice falling asleep to you guys’ breathing- peaceful,” he says with a shrug.
The days go by too fast. Each one was filled with various activities tailored to Mai as she enjoyed the time with her grandparents. On several occasions, she couldn’t help but announce how happy she was to have her favorite people with her all at the same time.
Although, on the second to last night, you fail to ignore when Jungkook doesn’t return from that brunch as soon as he assured Mai he would, showing up early in the evening sans tie and a fresh mark on the side of his neck.
He comes lazily into your room after a shower, greeted by Mai with open arms, “where were you?” She asks, pressing her face into his side.
“Sorry, kiddo.” His answer is short. You turn away and roll your eyes, closing the coloring book Mai was using and putting away her crayons; “your parents said you had unexpected business come up after brunch?”
He looks at you and nods.
“But look kiddo,” he picks Mai up conveniently placing her where she can’t point out the hickey, “you’re going to dinner alone with grandma and grandpa tonight, okay?” Mai throws her head back, “you’re abandoning me again?”
You can’t help but laugh, curiosity pushing away the heaviness in your chest, “wait, why?”
Jungkook looks at Mai, “cover your ears.”
He quirked an eyebrow at her and with a loud scoff, she does as he says.
“They insisted we have a night off, so I thought we could go to the club downstairs- dancing and drinking? What do you say?” He wiggles his eyebrows at you.
You shake your head, laughing, trying not to give in but hell, you do anyway; “I have a dress that has yet to be worn, might as well.”
While Jungkook spends the last few hours of daylight with Mai, you don’t waste any time and get ready. It isn’t often you can pamper yourself like this; hair blown out and laid sleek against your back, taking time on your makeup to ensure its lasting quality because you plan to dance away the trouble inside of your heart.
Just as you buckle the other strap to your heel, there’s a knock at the main door of your room. You peer into Jungkook and Mai’s room through the connecting door which has remained open the majority of the trip, remembering he left just a few minutes before drop Mai off at his parents’ room.
You open it without much thought, stumbling back when you come face to face with your best friend. He catches you by the wrist, chuckling.
His hair is combed with an effortless side part, thick bangs swept on either side of his forehead. His patterned buttoned-down stands out though the short sleeves allow his tattoos to be on display. White slacks and sleek shoes adorn his lower half while a touch of gold jewelry ties it all together. Pushing your figurative tongue back into your mouth, you offer a simple compliment before stepping out.
Going unnoticed is the way Jungkook’s eyes slink over your figure, selfishly detailing in his memory how your dress fits you in all the right places.
“Hurry up slowpoke,” you call to him, already halfway down the hallway. He looks up at you, wondering if you’ve caught him staring. You choose to turn away before he can see the smirk on your face.
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Settled in the bar, music booming around you while a colorful group of people aged from 21 to 90 fills the space for their last night of partying. Your feet are already aching after Jungkook pulled you straight onto the dance floor. Having clubbed with him on many occasions, you aren’t as jolted by his rhythm and ease to gyrate his hips to the music. Perhaps a little closer to you than you are used to, but you’ll allow a pass tonight. And really, are you complaining?
No. But you choose to ignore that voice in your head.
Jungkook is looking around when he finds you looking at him. You blink, clearing your throat, “I have a confession,” he scoots in closer so he can hear you better, eyes dropping to meet yours. Stirring in his seat, you wonder if he’s fidgeting out of discomfort.
Liquid courage pushes you to continue, “I broke into my minibar and had a little pre-game before you came,” you admit. Jungkook drops his head and laughs at you again. His eyes squint beneath a beaming smile, you practically choke at how beautiful he looks, “y-you might have to carry me back to my room later.” Stumbling over your words, your tongue suddenly feels numb.
He nods, “you deserve to let loose,” his expression takes on more sincerity, “you do so much for me and Mai.”
If not for the mood lighting flashing in various colors, you swear Jungkook’s face is flushed. His blinks are slow and you wonder when he’ll stop looking at you-
“Here you are.” The bartender barrages in with your drinks. You jump slightly while Jungkook thanks the man, a straight line forming his lips.
After two shots and another finished drink, Jungkook is ready to dance into the wee hours of the morning. Head caught in a constant loop after those shots, you insist he goes on his own. Just then a woman’s voice appears close to your ear, causing you to jump back. Jungkook looks to where you are with some sort of a smile appearing on his face but you can hardly make it out through hazy eyes.
He’s saying your name and you make every effort to concentrate, “this is my colleague, Rosie.”
Rosie smiles at you but you notice more the way her hands are wrapped around Jungkook’s bicep and then the way she moves her hand to smooth across his shoulders, tucking her fingers beneath his collar.
Rosie from brunch and generous love-biter, right. You smile, “nice to meet you.” You can’t help when your eyes ghost over the mark on Jungkook’s neck once more, the one you’ve had to pretend wasn’t there the entire night.
“Likewise,” she hardly spares you a second look before her eyes are glued to Jungkook’s, “let’s go dance.”
Jungkook sets his attention on you when you stand, making it a point to plant your feet firmly on the ground, “go on, I need to use the restroom.”
Rosie wastes no time and pulls Jungkook away.
You groan, staring at yourself in the mirror, eyes weighed down with one too many drinks though you’re still able to stand on your own. That deserves a pat on the back. Along with your determination to not allow this night to go sour as you make your way out to the dance floor once more.
But it all comes to a screeching halt when you find Rosie and Jungkook, even more, the way his lips hover dangerously over the skin of her neck, his hand smoothing over her waist. Their bodies pressed together while they danced to the song, not an inch of breathing space to spare between the two.
You can’t help the fire that rages through you though tears sting your eyes, before he can see given he even looks up for one minute, you make a desperate escape towards the exit.
Stupid..so stupid. Stupid on a monumental level. What did you think was going to happen-he’d magically fall in love with you on this trip? Yes…NO.
You sniffle as you rub the heels of your feet, skin red from the pain inflicted by your choice of footwear. Even after a long shower, scrubbing the black makeup off your eyes that melted onto the bags that are now present- you can’t shake the aching in your chest.
“Ugh,” you groan, tossing yourself back onto your bed. Hair still sopping wet from your shower and you dressed in your comfiest pajamas, nothing could soothe you at this point. Mind still swimming in a drunken state, you wish you could just black out already.
You shoot up into a sitting position once more, immediately regretting that. Jungkook peers in through that middle door, chuckling at you and a little less drunk than you. He always held his liquor better than you did.
That fire flickers in you once more, so slight but it causes you to twitch. You can’t un-notice it, even when you look away for a moment while he moves over to you. His hair is a mess, shirt hastily buttoned, and the collar tinted with pink, not to mention the faded lipstick marks around his jaw. He steps any closer to you and you could name the brand of perfume she was wearing.
“Club closed like two hours ago,” your words are still a bit slurred. Jungkook just chuckles, “yeah, I’m beat.” You shake your head while he moves back in the direction of his room.
“Old habits die hard,” you mutter venomously.
Jungkook cocks his head, taken aback, “what?”
You straighten your shoulders when he looks at you, “are you really going to risk putting yourself in this same situation again? Just for a one-night stand? Have you forgotten how Mai came into the picture?” The deep frown on your face is hardly enough to hide how you swallow back the gasp following your accusation. The dagger you’ve pierced him with digs into his back while a crushing pain swallows him whole, you can see the crumbling beneath your best friend’s eyes.
His cheeks grow red when he turns back towards the door, “go to sleep,” he mumbles in a tone that has the ground shaking, tossing his room key to the side, “you’re drunk.”
You flinch as he slams the door shut.
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The swaying of the boat doesn’t help the unsettling waves in your stomach and throbbing head. Even with the new presence of another person on the balcony, your head remains cradled in your hands.
“Here,” Jungkook speaks in a low timber but it still makes your head throb. He reaches out to you with a water bottle in hand, “and take these.”
You peer up, the torturous rays of the sun hurts your eyes. You shake your head. Jungkook smacks his tongue in disapproval, taking up the bottom space of the lounger. He opens the bottle for you and brings it up to your lips, “stubbornness won’t make you feel better, drink.”
“Oh god, please don’t say that word,” you retch, taking a sip. Another second later Jungkook pops the two aspirin into your mouth, assisting you with another swig of water.
The rushing waves settle around you but the awkward silence can be cut with the dagger Jungkook was still holding onto. He sighs, looking away from the wooden deck of the balcony.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen you so drunk before,” he says. The strained laughter that follows makes your chest grow hot along with the heaviness in his tone.
You feel his gaze fall over you and you finally look up at him, removing your sunglasses. He doesn’t tear his attention from you, waiting to see if you’ll do anything, say anything.
“Do you remember-”
You’re nodding before he can finish his sentence, “I remember what I said.” You wish you didn’t, probably even more than Jungkook wishes he never heard it.
Jungkook sits there a little bit stunned, straightening his back and you can see the frown grow on his brow, “not that I owe you any explanation-I didn’t sleep with her, we just-I don’t know I just couldn’t-”
You question him with your eyes, “you’re right Jungkook, you don’t need to explain anything to me, we’re both adults,” you cut him off before it can hurt anymore, irritation lining your tone which Jungkook picks up on the latter. Somehow he still misses the screaming behind your eyes.
“How about some leniency? I’m trying to be nice even though you insulted me last night-”
“You don’t have to be nice to me, I was out of line so let’s just drop it. I’m sorry for ever saying anything-”
“Will you let me care about you?” He snaps, though his voice is low. It catches you off guard, even when he’s been angry in the past, he’s never snapped at anybody. But the shock isn’t enough to stop you from feeling angry too.
“What are you talking-if this is you caring about me then please, spare me. I mean y-you came back to the room like nothing-” you groan out of frustration, swinging your legs over the lounge chair to stand up. The uneven weight nearly sends Jungkook to the ground but he manages to catch himself.
“Like nothing what?” Jungkook follows you into your room.
“Nothing Jungkook, nothing happened, that’s what I mean. And you know what, nothing is ever going to happen,” you mutter, tossing clothes into your opened suitcase.
He grasps for the words falling from your mouth, managing to hear every last one, “what do you mean?”
You shake your head, “look let’s just give each other space, yeah? We only have today left so let me just do what you brought me here to do-let me do what I do best apparently.”
The riddled expression on his face only makes you grow more impatient for him to leave you alone; “that’s why I’m here right Jungkook-to take care of Mai while you go off with your colleague? I’m just a babysitter for Mai-that’s all I’ve ever been to you since she was born, right?”
His eyes grow cold while your words only chip away at him more and more, “you’re my best friend-I invited you to come because you’re like family-”
“Oh, just stop!” You twist pieces of your clothing between angry fists, “stop doing this to me-stop saying those things to me, stop cuddling with me like we’re-we-” you’re sputtering on the edge of stone-cold tears, “you just-you have no idea what it does to me.”
“Then tell me,” he urges you, “for God’s sake talk to me instead of pushing me a-”
“I love you,” you cry desperately, your body sinking, “I-I love you, and I can’t do it anymore.” You collapse onto the edge of your bed, praying the tears will go away so you can get a coherent thought out, shaking your head.
All he can do is whisper your name.
“Just leave,” you look at him with red, tear-filled eyes, “please.”
“But we need to talk-”
“I won’t do this anymore…I just can’t,” you can’t stop crying, “please leave.”
There isn’t anything more heart-breaking than when the door clicks closed behind your best friend, you left alone to steep in the figurative mess left around you. A storm rages your mind while tear after tear continues to fall, even when you occupy yourself with stuffing everything into your suitcase. Some hours pass when you’re still in your room, suitcase packed. You can hear Mai enter their room, voice muffled behind the closed door she was so used to being open.
Follows is a stern call for her name from Jungkook just before the doorknob turns but abruptly stops along with your heart. You can hear her asking him why before you assume he pulls her away from the door.
You force your eyes shut, pressing your tear-stained face into your pillow and praying the last day on this god-awful ship would magically be over when you open your eyes again. Body exhausted from the emotional day, you feel yourself sink into darkness until all subconscious thought disappears.
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It was a fight to get Mai to understand why you weren’t going home with them the next morning. You never lied to her. Not once. Not until today when you told her it had to do with work, that was why. She slumped into her grandma’s hug before going over to the car per Jungkook’s request who was standing near you.
“Jungkook, I just want to go home and I already called an Uber so-”
He just nods but you can see the hurt in his eyes, “will you text me-us? Text us when you get home?”
You look down at your phone, “I need to go over to the waiting area where I’ll be picked up, thanks for inviting me.” With that, you’re turning away before he can even breathe a second time. Jungkook can’t tear his eyes from your back, wanting to watch you until your a speck in the distance.
“Mai is buckled in Jungkook-” his dad calls him away before he can do any of that.
What could you have meant?
‘I can’t do this anymore…I won’t do this.’ A sick feeling settles in Jungkook’s stomach; a strong taste of bile rises in his throat as he wonders if you mean it.
The days following begin to fuse into the next before you realize two weeks have gone by. Two weeks of missed phone calls from Jungkook but even more painful are the missed calls from their house phone.
You have to hold your stomach every time you think of Mai. The innocent one caught between two adults she thinks the world of. It’s enough to make you want to lose all contents of your stomach which hasn’t been much lately. Getting by on a couple of sips from your morning tea and a bite or two of unbuttered sourdough bread before heading off to work.
Everything has lost its taste, life as you know it has lost flavor.
You always enjoyed work, as stressful as it could be at times. But it was becoming your mute therapist because you couldn’t talk about the things warring your mind. They just bottled inside of you, one after the other, when would it finally implode?  
Three knocks sound at your front door and you jump away from the counter, a small plate with a sad sandwich placed on top of it; you abandon it, you’re sure the bread was starting to mold anyway. Poking your head around the corner, your eyes are wide as they stare down the narrow hallway. The runner in the center of the floor was askew from your return, shoes tossed under the hallway table cluttered with your keys and three days of mail; everything unopened.
The bell is ringing now, you yelp before clamping your hand over your mouth. There’s no way he has the gull to show up at your house-
A muffled call of your name sounds on the other side of the door followed by rapid presses of the doorbell.
It’s Nic.
You sigh, moving down the hallway as quickly as you can before tearing the door open. Nic stands there with her arm up, her hand fisted ready to knock on the door, “well, hello stranger!” Her voice is laced with sarcasm with a smile to boot. She’s already setting her things down on the small breakfast that separates the kitchen from the living room, she follows your every move until you’re standing on the opposite side of the counter, a sinister smile splayed on her lips.
“Wine?” She asks. You’re impressed when she pulls a long bottle from her purse, something like Mary Poppins would do if she wasn’t so…cheery?
You shake your head, pushing the bottle back into her bag, “I’m cutting myself off forever.”
“Ah,” she nods knowingly and it’s confirmation enough that she is aware of the revelation that occurred on the cruise. You know he called her and asked her to check on you.
You lean onto the counter and Nic does the same after propping herself up on the barstool, “so I know he sent you.”
Instead of a joke, she just purses her lips and offers you an apologetic smile, “correct.”
You shrug, resting your hand under your chin, the two of you continuing in a stare-off that held a thousand words between your shaking eyes and Nic’s patient ones. She doesn’t press you like you’re used to, but perhaps that’s because she can see the sheen across your eyes or the way you keep swallowing back the lump in your throat.
Nic, opinionated in all her ways and always managing to impose them on the ones she holds near and dear, bites her lip when you close your eyes only for a few tears to fall shortly after.
She clears her throat, pressing a Kleenex into your hand while your head hangs low; “you have to talk to him, babe.”
You’re shaking your head and Nic sighs, “so that’s it, you just cut him off? For how long are you planning on doing that-for forever?” Even Nic knows how ridiculous that is. Even more than when you swore you would take your once secret love for Jungkook to the grave.
“That’s the plan,” you croak, pressing the tissue over your eyes so it could soak up your tears.
“And Mai?” Nic retorts.
Your hands drop onto the counter along with your stomach; there’s no answer for that.
“Custody isn’t necessarily a thing between friends-”
“Nic,” you give her a stern look and she apologizes.
“Look, you do not need me to say this because I know you, and I know how damn much you love Mai,” Nic’s expression changes to an even more serious one, “but I’m going to say it anyway-I get seeing him and talking to him sounds incredibly painful, but are you really willing to lose that little girl’s trust? I mean anyone can see that she worships the ground you walk on. If you decide to never talk to them again, that-” Nic pushes her pointer finger onto the countertop, “that will be excruciating for her…You can’t make this choice for her and not be in her life all of a sudden just because you don’t want to face the consequences of that night.”
You hate how right she is. You hate that Nic has taken every single word out of your mouth and made sense of it.
The sun is setting over the city as Jungkook continues to stare out the ceiling to floor window of his office. It’s the end of a long workday. He's tired after showing several houses from one end of the boulevard to the other. His feet hurt, his neck is aching, and he’s sick of wearing this stupid suit.
But he can’t think of anything else. He can’t think of anyone else. All he can think about is you. Sick with worry about his daughter who has no understanding of what’s happened. She’s asked to sleep with him every night for the past two weeks, it was the only thing that could soothe her anxiety. He wanted to be mad at you for cutting Mai off. Him he understood, but Mai? Then again, he wondered how much he was to blame too. Did he unintentionally put his daughter in this spot? Going out with a different woman at least a few nights a week, asking you to babysit Mai every time? If he had just been honest from the beginning, maybe none of this would have happened.
He scoffs at himself, ripping his tie from around his neck and tossing it onto his desk. Of course, idiot, if you just confessed years ago, this wouldn’t be happening. Mai wouldn’t be experiencing her first heartbreak at 7 years old. Selfishly, he wouldn’t have had to see the hurt that split you right down the middle when he waltzed in that night covered in another woman’s touch.
All the times you saw him that way.
Idiot. He has to laugh. Idiot doesn’t even begin to cover it.
“Hi baby,” Jungkook sweeps Mai into his arms when he finally arrives home, relieving the babysitter. Mai rests her head on his shoulder, pressing the moles she can see on his face with her finger. He’s not used to her being so quiet. It’s late; way past her bedtime.
“I couldn’t sleep,” Mai sighs into his shoulder.
“I know,” he rubs her back, walking into her bedroom. Maybe she could manage it tonight. Mai doesn’t fight it, climbing under her comforter when Jungkook pulls it back for her. He sits on the floor next to her bed, knees curled up to his chest, he looks back at Mai whose eyes glisten under the glow of the starry night light, “guess we need to talk, huh?” She asks.
Jungkook chuckles, pinching her cheek, “shoot.”
Mai’s eyelashes flutter when she looks away, “she always has dinner with us on Sundays,” she starts, “is she mad at me?”
Jungkook is quick to settle her disquieting thoughts, “never in a million years bud, she could never be upset with you.”
“Then why hasn’t she come to see me?” Mai isn’t crying, but her eyes look back at Jungkook and he can feel a tear in his heart when she does.
He sighs, holding Mai’s hand inside of his; “I hurt her feelings, so I think seeing you makes it hard for her because I’m always with you, right?”
Mai nods, “so say you’re sorry dad.”
He muffles a laugh, “it’s not that easy for adults sometimes.”
“Why? Don’t you miss her too?”
“I do,” he admits, “and I care a lot about her too.” Jungkook says, eying Mai, searching for the right words before he continues, “do you know what that means, bean?” He rested his chin on top of his hand, stroking her hair away from her face with the other. Mai observes her dad, hands pressed underneath her cheek.
“Grandma says when you care about people, it means you love them, so-” she twitches her nose inquisitively and Jungkook can’t help but giggle, leaning in to pinch it, “ask me questions,” says, helping her out.
Mai yawns, not too far from sleep. But Jungkook can’t resist this time before bed, when his daughter is on the precipice of sweet slumber and they are alone, talking about whatever. Most of the time they are teasing each other, but if Mai has spent the day with you, Jungkook especially wanted to hear about it.
“I guess, does it mean you love her like you love me?” Mai asks.
The corner of his lips quirk into a smile, “I love you more than you can ever know-” he stops to catch the twinkle in his daughter’s eye, “but this love is a little bit different.”
Mai nods and follows with a big yawn. Jungkook leans in once more to kiss her forehead, “sleep tight.”
“I won’t let the bedbugs bite,” May yawns again.
Before Jungkook steps out of her room, Mai squeaks, “dad?”
“Yeah?” He turns in a heartbeat.
“I love her too, and well you know how the other kids at school-well most kids have their moms you know?”
He can feel the final shattering inside of him when he goes to rub his chest. Jungkook moves in, sitting next to Mai when she sits up, “I feel like I love her how a kid is supposed to love their mom-like she is the very best friend I will ever get to have, dad,” Mai looks up at him, “if she is mad at you, please make it better because I think we need her forever.”
Tears brim the outside of Jungkook’s eyes, his smile trembling when he stares down at his literal heart in the shape of his child; “I love you so much buddy,” he pulls her into his lap where Mai finds solace hiding her face in his shoulder.
“But my friend at school can never know that, it would hurt her feelings,” Mai muffles against him. Jungkook manages a gentle laugh, pressing a long kiss to the top of Mai’s head, his tears going unnoticed by his daughter.
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The last time you received a call from Mai’s school was a year ago, she pushed a boy who tried to put a dead lizard on top of her head. He fell back and scraped his elbow. Mai was not about to let the school call her dad.
‘He won’t be as mad if you’re with me!’ She insisted, holding her hand in yours as the two of you crossed the street, a detention slip in her other hand.
Listed as the third emergency contact under her grandma, your stomach churned wondering why they would be calling you. There was no question whether you would answer or not.
“Hello?” You breathe slowly into the phone.
The woman on the other end informs you it’s Mai’s principal; “Mai asked that we call you, the kids had an early release today but it appears her father and grandmother have forgotten to pick her up?”
You frown, they never forget to pick Mai up from school. And if either one couldn’t, you were the next in line; “oh-uh okay, I-um-I can be there in-” you look at the clock above your desk, ignoring the incomplete work before you, “I can be there in 15 minutes.”
You rush around the room to gather your things, darting for the door with your keys in hand.
By the time you’re walking up to the school Mai is running through the main doors, the principal right behind her smiling as Mai meets you halfway. She clings around your waist and it instantly causes your eyes to water, “hi bean.”
“I missed you,” she says, pulling herself off of you and grabbing your hand. She pulls you with fervor to your car, barely giving you time to look back and wave at the principal.
Once settled in the car you turn towards the backseat and look at her with raised brows, “did they know you were getting out early?”
Mai purses her lips, eyes widening when she shrugs in response, “they always know when to pick me up.”
“Hm,” you turn around without much afterthought, making the drive back to their house. It’s been three weeks now, three weeks since that night which you’ve tried desperately to forget, and three weeks since talking to Jungkook and Mai.
You aren’t sure what classifies as tension between an adult and a child, but the Mai who is usually speaking faster than she can keep up with has taken to staring out the window, staring at the buildings whizzing by and trees blending into the other. You look into the rearview mirror every so often, pretending you don’t know why she looks so indifferent.
Hugging you was a good sign, but now she seems awkward, dashing out of your car and beating you to the front door. You eye each other when you make it there. She gives you a sarcastic look, looking at your keys for a moment before you get the hint. You always had a set of keys to their house. It felt weird using them now.
Mai pushes the door open impatiently, the keys still in the lock with your hand attached to it, “hey geez, slow down will you-no running-” you smack your tongue, setting your things down when Mai runs down the hallway to her bedroom.
Your chest fills with air as you take a glance around their home, singing praises that Jungkook’s car was not in the driveway meaning he must have been too busy to eat lunch at home.
“Mai,” your voice echoes down the hall, “Mai you know your dad doesn’t like you running in the house.”
She’s sitting at the small table her grandpa made for her, her homework already laid out and a pencil in hand. You watch her for a moment, waiting for any sign of acknowledgment to what you’ve said. But just sits there, chin resting in her hand while she reads over the assignment.
You sigh, moving to sit on the floor next to her, looking over her paper to read the words but all you can see is the blank expression on Mai’s face. You poke her hand, “anybody in there?”
She moves her hand into her lap and starts writing.
You know why she’s doing this and you can’t be upset, but it does sting a little. Usually, it’s a fight to get her to do her homework when you’re around; “so you’re just going to ignore me? I thought you missed me.”
It’s only then that her eyes dart upward, her eyes a mirrored reflection of her father’s. It’s always amazed you how they twinkle like stardust is floating around in them. You attempt a smile but it just falls when you notice how her eyes are actually glistening with tears.
“I missed you too bean-”
“Na-uh, I’m a kid but you don’t need to lie to me, I’m a tough kid.” She defends herself.
“Mai,” you sigh.
“If you missed me then you would have come to see me, but you didn’t for three whole weeks, so you’re just a liar,” Mai abandons her pencil and drops her face onto the table, creating a barrier around her head with her arms.
That cuts you deep.
A liar.
You sit there and listen to her sniffle before working up the courage to touch her arm, she flinches and you wait for her to pull away but it’s more surprising when she doesn’t.
“Bean, will you look at me please?” Your tone is soft as you rub her arm. She shakes her head.
“Please?” Is all you can say. You watch her chest heave when she complies a minute later, cheeks wet from her tears, she can hardly keep her eyes on you. You reach over and wipe her face with the back of your hand, squeezing her chin in the process. She bites back a smile.
“You lost a tooth!” You gasp, holding onto her chin and moving it down to reveal the new gap in her bottom teeth. She can’t help but perk up at you noticing, “it fell out when I bit into an apple,” she giggles. You laugh with her, watching her round cheeks glow pink; “Mai, I really have missed you.”
She moves her lips in a thinking manner, finally, you can breathe a little bit easier when her eyes find you, “I told dad you are my best friend. And usually best friends like to see each other, so,” she hums, scrounging around for her thoughts, “so you didn’t come over and I thought you just didn’t want me to be your friend anymore.”
You’re shaking your head, cursing at yourself, “that would never happen, not in a million lifetimes kid because you’re my best friend too.”
She understands but you can still see the questioning in her expression as she tries to piece it all together so it can make sense. You pull Mai closer to you until she is sitting right in front of you, her legs tucked underneath her; “I am so sorry bean, for not talking to you and for not coming around-” you start but you wonder how to continue, looking around the room as if there is some viable answer written on the walls, “I was…angry about something and it hurt me really bad. So I thought being alone would make me feel better.”
Mai plays with your hands like nothing, perhaps not even noticing she is doing it, “did it?”
You have to chuckle at her, if only you had a measure of Mai’s honesty, you and Jungkook likely would not be in this current situation, “no, because I just ended up hurting the one person that means so much to me, the only one who has never hurt me back.”
Mai looks at you hopefully, “me?”
A smile beams across your face and you pull Mai into you until she is giggling, “yes you, silly.”
After having fun for a moment, Mai settles back down, drawing circles into the shag rug, “dad said he hurt your feelings, so I guess this is all his fault.”
You snort, rubbing your hand over her hair, “well, I can’t put all the blame-”
“MAI?” The desperate yell for her name causes both of you to jump. Mai clamors to her feet, darting into her bathroom and slamming the door.
“What-Mai?” You’re launched into a panic, one over the fact that Mai’s face drained of any color at the sound of her dad’s gruff voice and second, it’s Jungkook’s voice.
He’s calling her name with a rapid-fire tongue. Before you can say anything he tears into Mai’s bedroom and comes to a screeching halt at the sight of you. He’s breathless staring at you. All you can manage is to gesture at the bathroom door, “she ran in there.” Just then Mrs. Jeon comes in behind her son, worried eyes finding relief upon seeing you, “oh thank God, please tell me Mai is here,” she sighs.
You nod, confused as ever, “her principal called me because it was an early day and nobody was there to pick her up…” You stop, realizing there was a major miscommunication and Mai was the culprit.
Jungkook’s eyes are fierce, eyebrows in a straight line when he moves in front of the bathroom door, hand shaking the doorknob which is now locked. He makes a fist ready to pound on it when his mom stops him, “you’ll just make it worse,” she speaks calmly, looking back at you. Her hands are trembling when she reaches out to you, you move forward and grab them.
“I’m sure she didn’t mean to upset-”
“We’ve been looking everywhere for the last hour-since when did my kid start scheming-open this door Mai!” Jungkook is working up again.
“Jungkook-ah, please,” Mrs. Jeon pleaded, pushing herself between the door and her raging son, “the important part is she is safe…why don’t you go to the kitchen, get some water and just relax for a moment.”
She shakes her head, “I will talk to her, now go.”
Hesitantly he drags his feet and leaves the room. Your stomach does flips when Mrs. Jeon settles her attention on you, hand resting on the doorknob of Mai’s bathroom.
Please, don’t say it. Don’t say it. Don’t-
“Will you keep an eye on him, please? I don’t know why but he’s been so worked up lately-” Mrs. Jeon shrugs, unsure of what else to say. You take a deep breath in, nodding as you march out of the room at a snail’s pace.
He’s bent at the waist, face pressed into his palms before he runs them back through his hair. It’s shorter now. He takes a deep breath that is promptly cut off when he sees you standing there, your hands resting on top of the granite countertop. Your fingers twitch with anxiety, palms feeling clammy as your heartbeat picks up again.
He finishes a glass of water, turning around to set it in the sink. He doesn’t look back at you, resting his hands at the edge of the sink, “thanks for picking her up,” his voice is barely audible, “you uh, you don’t have to stay-”
“I’m sorry.”
His shoulders tense, another breath is trapped in his throat at the sound of your voice. It rasps and shakes at the threat of new tears but you hold them back for as long you can. You aren’t sure how long that will last.
“Jungkook?” You aren’t confident saying his name, unsure if he is seething because of Mai or if it’s really because of you.
He nods before turning around, his eyes look over your head and then at your ear before he gives up, looking down at the floor.
“I don’t know-” you stop when you hear Mrs. Jeon come down the hallway, she stands next to you and rubs your back, a more relaxed smile on her face.
“She failed to let us know that it was an early day, says she forgot,” Mrs. Jeon chuckles. You and Jungkook look at each other knowing full well that Mai was the mastermind behind this very moment; “but she understands the severity of what she caused and is ready to apologize to you,” his mom looks from her son to you, “and you.”
Jungkook thanks her and walks her to the front door after she hugs you goodbye; “oh,” she calls to you gently, “come over for dinner soon? It’s like pulling teeth to get this boy to bring you over, we miss you.”
You just nod, smiling at her before Jungkook closes the door behind her. He rubs the back of his neck, reclaiming his spot across from you. The island provides safe space between the two of you as you lean your weight against it.
“I’m sorry,” his tone is unsure but you can feel the guilt radiate from him, “I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to say that,” he sighs, “and so many other things.” He mutters the last part but you manage to hear it.
“I was hurt,” you swallow hard that even he can hear it, “I’ve had so much pent up-for years…I just lost it.”
“I wish you just told me, we always talked about everything. I mean, d-don’t you think I would have wanted to know about something that important?” His words are desperate to be heard, steeped in weeks of constant questioning.
“You make it sound like confessing is so easy,” you can’t help the frown that appears, “the risk involved? Because telling you just so I can be rejected doesn’t mean just losing you,” your voice struggles, “I’ll lose Mai too and god, I can’t stomach that.”
He’s looking at you now, directly at you, blinking away what you can only assume are tears.
“I-I didn’t want to risk that so I held it in, I pushed it away until I believed that I didn’t love you anymore but,” you shake your head, “I realized it wasn’t going to go away even after every date you came home from. How I’ve had to ignore the sick feeling in my stomach when you traipse in at god knows what time after you’ve been with another woman, a woman that could never be me-will never be me…I was so mad that I couldn’t be jealous enough or hurt enough by that to stop loving you. I want to stop, but I can’t figure out how-” your words taper off when you notice a trace of a smile spreads across his lips. Is he laughing at you?
“Are you sm-smiling?” Your hands tremble and you’re ready to storm out of there.
He is smiling, it’s barely there but you can see it, “if you would just stop talking for a second then I can finally tell you that I love you too,” his eyebrows lift as he looks at you with hopeful eyes.
Everything stops. Your heart launches into your throat and you aren’t sure if you’re breathing anymore. You can feel your mouth fall open, you have to tell yourself to close it. Jungkook just waits.
“What? What do you mean,” you stutter, your lungs feel like they are collapsing, “why are you telling me this now?”
Jungkook’s lips quirk into a crooked smirk, a soft chuckle following. He takes you in, the intensity of his stare enough to make you fall back, you can only hope there’s enough strength left in you to hold yourself up. Your stomach flips when he makes a step forward to which you take one back.
“You didn’t give me a chance to say anything when it all happened,” his feet move toward you again in one small step, “I wanted to tell you then but rightfully so, you were so upset. Then you were telling me to leave-”
“I didn’t-I” “You didn’t want me to reject you?” Jungkook fills in the blanks for you. You nod sheepishly, wringing your hand around your wrist.
The air stills when Jungkook closes the gap between you, only a sliver of space left, “have I ever rejected you since we’ve known each other?”
Your mind races. Intentionally, no he hasn’t. As much as you dropped everything to be with Mai, Jungkook would do the same. When your car broke down on the freeway late one night? Jungkook was there before the tow truck, a sleeping Mai in the back seat of their car. When you didn’t get the job you worked hard for? He was at your apartment to pick up the pieces, later you and Mai baked cookies together and ended that awful day with a movie-the three of you cuddled up on your couch.
Jungkook has always been there.
“God, all I’ve ever wanted was you,” Jungkook can’t stop himself long enough to allow you to stay in your thoughts. He can practically see your heart thumping out of your chest, he can feel your warm breath stagger out of your mouth. Jungkook then decides to reach up and touch your neck with ghostly fingers. His touch is so slight they leave goosebumps all over your skin. You swallow the lump in your throat when his hand grazes your jaw before he cups it around the side of your face. His fingers rub the shell of your ear.
“Do you still want me?” His lips are closer when you blink. With the little space left, it’s almost too difficult to look up at him; “Jungkook I-”
“Yes or no?” A giggle reverberates inside of his chest.
“Yes,” You’re breathless. You only catch a second of his smile before his lips press against yours. They are slightly chapped but so soft as they mold to yours. You can feel your skin growing hot when his tongue rubs against your bottom lip. It takes everything in you not to burst right then and there, fallen victim to his tender kiss.
“Wait,” you push your hands against his chest, the two of you left breathless. He grabs your hands to keep you close, “are you serious?”
He chuckles, nodding, his warm breath casts over your face, putting you deeper under his spell.
“After that night, I didn’t think I had a chance. I didn’t even think it could ever be a possibility before,” his eyes look uncertain now, “you know too much about me,” he runs his fingers back through your hair, “but you are everything to me…you’ve loved Mai without me even asking you to,” he sighs, his confident smile reducing to a much softer one. Innocent eyes staring down at you, “watching you with my daughter these last 7 years has been the highlight of my life but it was torturous too-”
You press your face into his chest, chuckling while tears overcome you, “torturous?”
Jungkook picks your chin up and kisses your tears away before stealing another one from your lips; “you were always in arms reach but I couldn’t bring myself to say anything, I just silently loved you.”
You shake your head, allowing Jungkook to wipe each one away with his thumb.
“I was afraid it would confuse Mai, Kook. She’s my world too, you know?” You whisper.
“She’s too wise for her age,” he brushes his nose against yours, wearing that smile that exposes his bunny teeth, “trust me, she knows enough that we should be a family.” He can’t keep himself apart from you for long, dusting his lips over yours before pulling you in all the way. The only thing that forces him to stop is when he chuckles low.
“What?” You smile, head floating in ecstasy, you think you could pass out.
“I guess that stupid fortune was true.”
You lean against him, pressing your hands into his chest when he wraps you in his arms, “I love you.”
Jungkook lets his chin rest against your shoulder while the two of you stay that way for a little bit. If not for the quiet pad of Mai’s bare feet tapping down the hallway, he thinks he could have stayed that way with you all night.
His eyes brighten when he sees Mai stoke around the corner, saucer-sized eyes spying on the two of you.
“Come here kiddo,” Jungkook’s voice surprises you, and you pull away as Mai runs into the kitchen. Before you can say anything to her, she wraps her arms around your middle, nose pressed into your hip. She muffles something.
You sniffle, “I can’t understand you,” you giggle, grabbing her chin in a tender grip so she can look up at you. Her eyes are wet again when she does, resting her chin against your stomach, “I said, I love you.” Mai whispers like her dad can’t hear her. Her cheeks grow red and she immediately shies away.
Jungkook rubs her back with a loving stroke when he hears your breath catch in your throat. You kneel and take Mai’s face in your hands, “I love you so much, bean.”
“Enough to stick around forever?” She laughs nervously, swallowing back a soft cry, “because it was horrible without you, dad doesn’t know how to build forts like you do.” Jungkook laughs, nudging Mai’s back with his knee.
There’s a gentle mending in your heart when she says that, you stroke her hair and laugh with glistening eyes, “I promise I’ll build forts with you until we’re both too big to fit in them, and even then kid, you can’t ever get rid of me.” You are struggling to hold back the ugliest of sobs.
Mai doesn’t answer, she only falls forward into your arms, nuzzling her face into your hair. Jungkook joins you, resting on his knees to wrap the two of you into his hold. You pull your face away enough so you can look at him. He kisses you before mouthing the words you’ve so yearned to hear him say; “I love you.”
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taglist: @j8y @thisartemisnevermisses @fangirl125reader @jeonsicedlatte @kooookie @its11-11mylove @glqtter @daggerbeneathmygown @btsmylife21 @lovelytaes-blog @yukiehyukie @vintageroses10 @ppeachyttae​
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joonscypher · 16 days ago
Big Bad Wolf | KNJ (M)
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🔴 Summary: Your mom has always warned you not to venture too deep into the forest, for legend has it, in it lives vicious, man eating wolves. You’ve always listened to her words until one day when your love of animals gets the better of you and you end up in the woods, chasing after a wounded cat. When you stumble across a secluded cottage in the middle of the forest and meet one of these “Big Bad Wolves,” you learn that maybe not everything is as it seems.
🔴 Pairing: Wolf Shapeshifter!Namjoon x Human Female!Reader
🔴 Genre/AU: Angst, fluff, smut, fantasy, strangers to lovers
🔴 Rating: 18+ | R
🔴 Warnings: profanity, non-descriptive talk of murder, mention of guns/a gunshot wound, unprotected sex, oral sex (female receiving), fingering, knotting, marking
🔴 Words: 19.7k 🥴
🔴 Note: It's finally here - my fic for @hobeemin​'s Bangtan Grimm Event!! The fairytale my fic is inspired by is Little Red Riding Hood. Full disclosure here, this is my first half human/half animal fic so to anyone that reads this that is much more seasoned with hybrid-esque fics, it’s not the same as others you probably have read lol. 
Thank you soooo much to @lavienjin​ for this amazing banner!! ❤️❤️ ENORMOUS thank you to @playmetheclassics​ for literally being my hero and beta reading this chonker of a fic in a few hours after I finished it 🥰🥰
This fic has been a journey to say the least. Writer's block has had me in an absolute chokehold these past few months, but I'm so glad I was able to finally finish this! Please enjoy my longest fic to date 😂💖
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“And what happens if you meet the wolves?”
“Your mom and dad haven’t told you? They’ll bring you back to their den, deep, deep in the forest, and eat you up!”
May, your neighbor’s daughter, stares at you, wide, brown eyes get impossibly bigger as her lips form a pout. She’s on the verge of crying when your mom and her girlfriend Angela come into the dining room where you’re sitting with the child.
“Y/n, stop scaring May!” Your mom scolds, moving into the kitchen.
“I’m not,” you shrug.
“She asked about the wolves, and I told her.”
“She said that if you go too far in the forest, they’ll snatch you up and tear out your throat!” Your mom gives you a pointed look at the child’s hysterical words.
“What? You told me those same stories when I was her age.”
“And Y/n isn’t exactly wrong,” Angela shrugs, taking a seat next to you at the kitchen table.
“Well, let’s keep those stories to her parents to tell and not traumatize her here, please,” you and Angela roll your eyes when she turns to May to calm her down.
It's true, though; your mom told you the story of the man-eating wolves that live in the forest when you were old enough to properly comprehend cause and effect. You grew up with the idea that if you ventured too far into the forest, especially at night, then you were more or less asking for death.
On top of that, Angela was also a member of the wolf force, and she and your mom have been dating since you were in high school, so you heard plenty of stories about wolves and what they did.
From what you learned growing up, the town you’ve lived in all your life was almost invaded years ago by these wolves, and many people were murdered. The town nearly became devoid of any humans until a few brave citizens formed a separate branch of the existing police force specifically to fight off these monsters. Many of the wolves were killed to protect the town, while the rest fled into the forest where it’s rumored they’ve lived all these years.
Some people have been dumb enough to go into the forest at night out of curiosity or because of dares, and they either come back into town with tales of sharp teeth and half-human half-monster creatures, or they go missing and are presumed dead. It’s something you’ve mostly believed for years, but something about it has always sat oddly with you, but you’re not about to be the one who tests this theory, to be sure.
Once May is calm and goes back to her coloring, your mom takes a few steps into the kitchen to begin making lunch before she goes to the hospital for work. Your phone on the table lights up, diverting your attention to it, and you see a text from your best friend on the lock screen.
Jin: Can I come over?
You don’t even get to reply before you hear your front door opening and Seokjin’s loud voice ring through the house.
“Good afternoon ladies!” Your best friend since birth comes waltzing into the kitchen with nearly too much energy.
“I don’t know why you bother to text me when you’re just gonna bust in here as if you live here.” You say to Seokjin as he hugs your mom and Angela and moves to pick May up.
“It’s called being polite, Red. Not that you’d know about that of course.” He sticks his nose up at you and goes back to giving attention to May, asking what she’s coloring.
Seokjin has been dead set on calling you Red since you first started dying your hair in high school, and even now, when you’re both so close to thirty, he keeps doing it. You don’t mind so much anymore, but when he’s being smart with you, he always says it in the sassiest way.
As if sensing the snarky comment about to come out of your mouth, your mom interjects, asking Seokjin if he wants lunch.
“Oh, no thank you. I just came by to say hi. I’m on my way downtown to see my dad. He and grandpa are finally letting me do a night patrol with them today!” Angela high-fives him at the good news, but you can’t help but taunt him.
“Wow, it only took you like ten years.” You murmur to annoy him. It works, of course.
“Hey! It takes time to get trained for night patrol, thank you very much!”
“Yeah, yeah. What is there to train for? Aren’t you just walking around town making sure no wolves get in?”
“You have to be trained in combat and weaponry, silly girl. You can’t just go limbs and guns flying at a wolf with no proper knowledge. They’ll eat you alive.” He argues, looking to Angela for confirmation, who nods.
“How do you know?” you challenge. “You’ve never even seen a wolf.”
“My father has! And he told me all about it. The cold, stale feeling that overcomes your body. The way your blood feels like it’s frozen in your veins. Your body shakes as you stare into those evil, glowing red eyes while it bares those sharp teeth at you, canines glistening with blood under the moonlight.
Your heart stops, and your life flashes before your eyes. After that, you only have but a second before the creature comes charging at you, and you draw your weapon. The silver bullet has to pierce its head or its heart to assure that you take the monster down. It’ll tear you limb from limb otherwise and make sure you’re alive for every agonizing second until it’s ready to pull your head from your shoulders and eat your still-warm flesh. You need to train.”
There’s a pregnant pause, and the whole kitchen is still as you digest Seokjin’s words.
Poor May, still in his arms, starts bawling, and your mom rushes to comfort her, scolding Seokjin in the process.
“Damnit, Seokjin, I just calmed her down!”
“Sorry,” he says sheepishly, handing her to your mom before saying his goodbyes and heading out.
“Oh, Y/n,” Your mom mentions as May finally settles down. “I need you to go see your grandmother before it gets dark. She's been hounding me to bake my banana bread for her, and I finally remembered. Angela and I are both working nightshifts tonight, so we don’t have time.”
You groan in response. “But I was going to meet up with Victoria and Chaerin today!”
“And now you’re taking bread to your grandmother. Victoria and Chaerin will be around tomorrow. Now I’ve got to finish making a quick lunch, and you get ready to go before sunset.”
You wait until she turns around to let out a quiet sigh. Grabbing your bag in the foyer and the bread from the kitchen, you head outside, calling goodbye to everyone over your shoulder.
With no car, you wheel your bike from the garage and take off down the sidewalk on it, heading towards the forest line and the path out of town. You need to do more saving up to move out on your own. Babysitting the neighborhood kids makes a small dent in your savings account along with what you make at Seokjin’s mom’s bakery, but it wasn’t enough to leave again.
After high school, you had gotten out of town. You went to college away from your suburban neighborhood, having been antsy to start over somewhere else and start on the journey to becoming a veterinarian. You were in school on a scholarship, but after your freshman year, when your grades began to drop due to getting much more overwhelmed by college than you thought you would, your scholarship was gone. You were moving off campus and into an apartment in the city with some roommates you found online.
You only stayed with them for a year before moving out as fast as you could. Between their messiness, inconsiderateness, and overall unpleasantness, you packed up and left as soon as the lease was up. The part-time job you worked at the coffee shop didn’t leave you with enough to get another place, and with no other vacancies nearby, you reluctantly moved back home.
Your mom was more than happy to have you back home and all of your friends who were still there, Seokjin included, welcomed you back, and things picked back up like normal, but you were different. You still want out, and you’re going to work as hard as you can to make that happen.
Having forgotten your headphones at home, it’s just you and your thoughts as you ride through the forest. It’s still mid-afternoon, so you’re not worried as you ride. Your grandma lives about thirty minutes away by bike, longer if you take your time, but you were moving fast. You don’t have any more babysitting jobs for the rest of the day, and the bakery is closed today, so you’re eager to get back home and continue your day.
Eventually, you cross the bridge-covered river that separates your town from the next one over that your grandma lives in. You don’t remember why she moved, only that she lived with you and your mom after she retired from her nursing job at the town hospital.
One day in high school she announced she’d be moving a town over. You recall your mom not being thrilled, there was a big argument, and she stopped talking to her for a while before they made up as best as they could, but their relationship didn’t feel the same. You’ve tried to get either of them to tell you what happened repeatedly, but they deny you every time.
You arrive at your grandma's in record time, parking your bike and having enough time to have bread and tea with her while she goes on with a story about her neighbor she has a crush on.
“Speaking of crushes, how is Seokjin?” She asks once her story is over and the question has you choking on your tea.
“What does he have to do with crushes?!”
“Oh come on, Y/n. The two of you have been inseparable since you were children. Plus, you’re getting older now. Have you ever thought of seriously moving along with him?” Your grandma shrugs but eyes you carefully.
“Grandma, I’ve told you, and mom, and his parents and, everyone else in this town that Seokjin and I are just friends. We’ve never had any remotely romantic feelings for one another, okay?” You assure her for what feels like the thousandth time.
This is only partially true. There was a brief time where you once thought you liked Seokjin but couldn’t imagine being romantic with him. You kissed once when you were playing house as kids, and it was awkward. You kissed again at a party in middle-school and it was still weird. He told you in high school that he’s always liked you, but you had to turn him down. He’s handsome and a great guy, but you're just not attracted to him. He’s like a brother to you.
“Besides, Seokjin just joined the wolf force officially so he definitely wants to stay here. You know I want out.”
She hums, sipping her tea. “I know you do, honey. And you know you’re always welcome here.”
“I know, but I want to go back to the city. No one else is interested in leaving town, let alone going that far out, so I’m just focusing on that for myself. I’m not even thinking about dating anyway.”
“That’s fair. I won’t ask you about Seokjin like that anymore, promise.”
You thank her and finish the rest of your tea before bidding her goodbye. The sky is now orangey-pink which means you’ve got to hit the trail.
With a hug and another reminder that her doors are always open, you’re off, able to ride much faster without the task of protecting a baked good. You’re thankful for this as the feeling of eyes on you stays on you the whole ride home until you break through the clearing and are back in town with the houses and voices of people you know around you.
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As the rest of the week crawls by, you live your mundane life, as usual, working, saving up, hanging out with Seokjin and the rest of your friends, and doing nothing extraordinary.
When your grandma is in bed with a nasty cold, you ride to her house with soup and medicine and stay until the sun begins to set and darkness starts to fall. Your grandma is plenty independent for her age, but even the worst cold has her bedridden for a few days.
Once she’s eaten and taken her medicine, you bravely say goodbye, and don’t let her see the way your eyes widen to scan the darkness outside as you sprint to your bike and move your legs as fast as they’ll go. You ride in silence, staying vigilant of your surroundings the whole ride. The sun has finally set when you can see the lights from the houses in town approaching as you push your legs harder.
You’re so close to leaving the forest when out of the corner of your eye, you see a flash of something fast and big. Your bike screeches to a stop as you listen carefully, and you hear nothing for a beat before your ears pick up the sound of snapping twigs and leaves. Turning to the other side of the trail, you stare into the darkness, not seeing much of anything until you see a pair of glowing yellow eyes staring at you. Neither you nor the eyes move or blink.
A wolf. A wolf is staring at you in the darkness of the forest at night. You know what it is, and yet, you’re frozen. Time seems to move slowly, and before you know it, the eyes disappear as you listen to the wolf retreat, leaves crunching under its feet.
Once you’re home, you barely register the way your mom yells at you for being in the forest when it’s dark. All you think about is those yellow eyes boring into yours, seemingly into your soul. You don’t say anything in response, choosing to apologize to your mom until she decides it’s good enough and stomps to her room.
Of course, you didn’t mention what you saw - she’d lock you in your room, being a full-grown adult be damned. Looking at your phone, your finger hovers over the call button on Seokjin’s contact, but you decide not to. You do the same with Chaerin and Victoria before putting your phone on your nightstand, calling no one. Seokjin would immediately call a search party into the forest to hunt the thing down, while your other two closest friends would either freak out and push you to tell someone or tell the wolf force on your behalf.
You came face to face with a wolf, so why did it run away and not eat you? If the stories you’ve heard were correct, it should’ve snatched you right up and dragged you to its lair. You can’t make sense of it no matter how many times you wrack your brain, but something tells you not to tell anyone. The wolf didn’t harm you given the chance, so you won’t harm it, you decide.
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The next day, after receiving another scolding for staying out after dark by your mom and Angela, you go to work at Mrs. Kim’s bakery. She gave you the job when you first came back home from the city and even if it didn’t pay that well, you were grateful to have something. There are worse things than working around delicious baked goods all day, after all.
With last night’s incident still fresh in your mind, you breeze through the day, and before you know it, you’re clocking out in the early afternoon and heading home. You have to babysit a boy down the street tonight while his parents are out, so you want to get home and take a power nap beforehand.
“See you tomorrow!” You call to Mrs. Kim as you go out the back of the bakery to throw the trash out on your way.
Before you throw the garbage into the can, a rustling of bags startles you. Hesitantly you approach the overturned trash can to find a sleek black cat rooting through it.
“Well, hi there,” you coo at the cat who jumps and hisses at you. You apologize for startling it and offer a piece of the bread Mrs. Kim sent you home with. Hesitantly, the cat’s tiny pink nose twitches enough that it makes its way over to you, limping as it comes.
Holding the bread away from you, you observe the way it tries not to put a lot of weight on its right front paw. Once it gets in front of you, its tiny teeth nibble at the bread in your hand, and you let it take the piece from you and set it down to continue to eat.
“Poor baby,” you murmur while the cat hunches down. and you get a better look at its injured paw, looking as though it got some crusted blood on it.
When the bread piece is gone, the cat looks at you and the loaf in your hand almost expectantly. It’s hungry but still weary, so you waddle backwards, a little further away, and tear off another piece, tossing it to the cat. It limps over to eat that piece, and you repeat this process with it, all the way to the short distance of your front porch, which is only walking distance away.
While the cat finishes the final piece of bread you’ve offered it, you rush inside for a small bowl of water and set it down near you. After the bread piece is gone, the cat goes straight for the water, lapping enthusiastically while still nursing the injury.
As gently as you can, your hand creeps closer to the cat, finger grazing the injury. In response, the cat leaps backward, staring at you with wide eyes.
“I’m sorry!” You apologize and watch the cat dart away. “Wait, come back!” You sprint after it, both confused and impressed at how fast it’s moving with an injury.
You keep moving though, faltering slightly at the fact that you’re leaving your neighborhood and entering the forest behind this black ball of fur, but it’s still daytime, so you continue. The cat lets out some heartbreaking wail, no doubt in pain from running, but it doesn’t stop. You keep up as best you can because you know that it’ll stop eventually.
Unsure of how long you’ve been pursuing the cat, you realize eventually that quickly approaching in front of you is no longer thick trees but a small cottage instead.
The small house is two stories and looks like one of the wood and stone cottages you’d find in an old fairytale. One of the windows on the second floor is open, and the chimney has smoke billowing out of it, so you know someone must be home. There’s a small garden in front of it with tomatoes, greens, herbs, and a few other plants you can’t identify growing in it. The idea of someone living so far in the forest with the wolves leaves you baffled.
Even so, you know someone has to live here as you finally catch up with the cat as it meows and headbutts the front door. Cautiously you come up behind the cat as it watches you knock on the door, but it doesn’t run away.
You only have to wait a few seconds before the wooden door swings open and the most beautiful man you’ve ever seen in your life is on the other side. He’s so tall and so broad with swept-back blonde hair. His tan skin almost glistens under the sunlight that peeks through the trees above, and when it hits his deep, chocolate eyes, you feel your breath catch in your throat.
He’s scowling at you, but his hard expression melts when his eyes flicker down towards the cat at his feet, headbutting his ankle. He smiles, pink lips turning up and dimples popping into his cheeks.
“Oh, Sugar, where have you been?” He coos, his deep, gravelly timber leaving you nearly trembling in front of this stranger. After scooping the cat up into his strong arms, the smile fades as he looks at you again and this change in expression has you remembering how to form words.
“H-hi. Is that your cat?”
“Yes.” He says, sounding hesitant.
“Well, um, I found it behind the bakery in the trash. I gave it some water and bread, and then I saw its paw is injured, but it ran here while I tried to help it.”
The gorgeous man eyes the cat, then you again. “So you ran after a cat that was fleeing from you and followed it into the woods?”
“I know it sounds dumb, but I’m a vet, well, I’m going to be a vet and I can’t just let an injured animal not get help.” You say sheepishly, realizing how foolish this all was after he recounted it.
The man hums in response and looks down at the cat in his arms as it blinks back at him. Without another word, he turns on his heel and goes back into his cottage, leaving the door open behind him.
Awkwardly, you stand there, weighing your options. Is it foolish to follow a strange man into his home who lives in the middle of the woods while no one knows where you are? Yes.
But he has an injured cat, and he looked at said cat with so much love that he can’t possibly be all that bad.
Against your better judgment, you gingerly step inside the cottage, leaving the door open behind you in case you need to make a quick getaway.
You aren’t sure what you expected, but the house seems completely normal upon walking through the foyer. The staircase in front of you looks normal. The room to your left looks to have a couch in it and a huge bookcase against the wall packed shelf to shelf with books. Glancing to your right, you see what looks to be a tiny dining room, and through that, the entrance to what you see is a kitchen.
The house is surprisingly cozy for being so small, and it feels warm and smells nice. So many questions are flying around your head, but the mystery man appears at the top of the staircase suddenly and startles you.
“Would you mind looking at his paw?” He seems genuine as he looks down at you, and even with a part of your brain screaming at how stupid you are, you go upstairs and follow the man into a bedroom.
“If you’re studying to be a vet you probably know way more about his injury than me.” There’s a bed in the middle of the room with the cat - Sugar - lying towards the edge, licking his good paw. The room is normal, with a dresser and some clothes thrown about, accompanied by many potted plants of all sizes littered throughout the room.
The man sits next to Sugar and scratches his back while you cautiously approach. The cat’s green eyes watch as you cross the room and sit next to him. He watches as you reach out and pick his paw up, letting you inspect it
“This isn’t serious.” You say with relief. “Looks like it’s a pretty shallow cut. It bled a lot, but it’s not deep. From the looks of it, it happened maybe yesterday, and the blood just dried up. A simple clean-up should be all he needs if he’ll let you.”
The man looks more at ease with your words and nods.  “Thank you.”
“Of course.” An awkward silence hangs over the room, and you don’t know how to fill it. You have so many questions for the man out here all alone, but you don’t know how to ask without sounding intrusive. “I’m Y/n, by the way,” you finally blurt. “But everyone calls me Red.” You gesture towards your dyed hair.
The man visibly hesitates for a second. “I’m Namjoon,” he finally says.
Biting your lip, you try your best to formulate your next words. “Your house is beautiful. It seems so peaceful, but may I ask why you live out in the forest?”
Namjoon seems to flinch at the question, nostrils flaring before exhaling. “I like to be alone. I like the quiet. It’s safe.”
You have more questions on the tip of your tongue, but the atmosphere feels too tense for you to ask. You simply nod as in understanding before announcing that you need to get home before your mom comes looking for you. Namjoon walks you downstairs after you offer a sleeping Sugar a goodbye head scratch. You go to say goodbye but falter in the doorway.
“I, uh, I don’t know how to get back…” You trail off, eying the thick forest ahead.
“Oh. I’ll walk you.” He offers, leading you through the forest in what has to be the most awkward walk of your entire life. You ask him a few questions about his garden, to try and strike up a conversation, and you see his brown eyes light up. Namjoon goes on to tell you about his little garden, and how he loves being able to eat a lot of the things he grows, and how relaxing gardening is. He then mentions the plants you remember seeing in his room and how he has more around the house. He loves how comfortable and lively they make his quiet space and how they keep him company.
Namjoon seems to realize he’s gone off on a tangent and stops talking abruptly after mentioning that he wants to try and grow an apple tree.
“I admire people who love plants and gardening,” you say truthfully, so he doesn’t feel so awkward.
“Yeah. I’m great with animals and caring for them, but plants? Total plant killer. It’s probably because my mom is the same way. She’s tried, but everything potted has died in our house, and she passed the gene down to me.” You chuckle.
A small smile graces his lips in response. “It’s not that hard, I promise…” he trails off after that as if he is going to say something else but thinks better of it. He stops then, and you notice that the treeline is a few feet away, and you can see the lights from your neighborhood ahead.
“Thanks for walking me.” You smile at him, and he just barely returns it.
“You’re welcome.” He mumbles out before he turns and heads back toward his home.
After watching him go, you leave to prepare to go through the motions of making dinner for you, your mom, and Angela before they get home from work, but the only thing on your mind is Namjoon.
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Namjoon is still occupying space in your mind, which is why two days later you find yourself venturing back into the forest on your day off. You were perfectly safe the last time, plus you feel much more fearless with the sun high in the sky. You don’t exactly remember where his cottage was, but you hope for the best, and what feels like an hour later, you finally see the roof of the small house.
You’re out of breath and feel warm from walking so much, but you’re happy to have made it. You spy Namjoon outside, crouching in front of his garden with his back to you. Sugar is on the small porch, lying on his back, but jumps up when he sees you. The black cat lets out a meow and beelines towards you, making Namjoon turn to see what it is.
“Hi, sweet boy,” you greet the cat, bending to pick him up and inspect the small gauze Namjoon has wrapped about the cat’s paw. Sugar reclines in your arms, purring as you walk over to his owner.
“You’re back,” is all Namjoon says when you approach.
“I am.” You don’t know what to say about why you’re here, but Namjoon doesn’t ask. “Need help?” You ask, nodding towards the garden.
“Know how to weed?”
“Nope.” You smile wide at him, and the man actually laughs, the sound making you flush for some reason.
“I’ll show you. I have an extra pair of gloves. Hang on.”
Namjoon walks into the house and returns quickly with a second pair of gardening gloves. You put Sugar down and take them. They feel comically big on you, but you don’t mind.
You crouch next to Namjoon as he explains what weeding is and why it’s important. You let him show you what to pull and feel giddy inside when he praises you for your successful pull on your first try.
The minutes tick on like this, helping Namjoon weed and water his garden before you pick the ripe vegetables and carry them inside with him. He offers you lunch, which you gladly accept.
The initial tension that seemed to consume Namjoon when you first met him two days ago has since melted in a more comfortable but still guarded aura. You’ve spent most of your time with him doing the talking, telling him about your family, your babysitting, and your job at the bakery. You explain how you’ve wanted to be a vet since you were a child; your love for animals and desire to help them always being present. Sadly, you also recount some good times you had in college and what happened as you had to leave and come back, now feeling trapped back in this town again.
Namjoon genuinely listens the entire time, nodding and offering commentary here and there at the right times. He seems comfortable just listening to you, but you want to know more about him.
When he sits down with you, you voice this, lunch of potato stew and rice between you both. “Well, what do you want to know?” He asks hesitantly.
“I don’t know. Why do you live so far out here alone? How long have you lived here, and why have I never seen you in town? Whatever you want to share. I know I overshare, which is why you got the first half of my autobiography after only meeting me once, but don’t feel obligated to share that much.”
Namjoon chuckles. “No, it’s okay. I don’t mind getting to know you more, plus I don’t have much company really, so it’s nice to have someone so animated here.” He slurps a spoonful of soup after blowing on it. “I’ve lived here all my life - my whole family has until-” He stops himself and shoves more food into his mouth.
“So I’ve just stayed here. The solitude is nice. I only have to worry about Sugar and me. If I need anything like groceries or clothes, I go to the town over the bridge for it.” He shrugs, decidedly ending his short speech about himself.
As much as you want to pry, you don’t and instead make him tell you more about his books that you can see across the house in the living room. This gets Namjoon talking as he tells you how he’s read every book at least twenty times. It’s clear how much he loves reading, the fact that he doesn’t have a tv aside. He explains that he usually spends his evenings in bed with Sugar, a book or his journal, and the radio which is all he needs.
You admire how simple of a life Namjoon lives. This beautiful man lives independently with only his cat and a few essential things in the modern world, no school to worry about, no stress of people expecting something from him, and no real pressure of adulting.
After lunch, you offer to help him with any other house chores he has, and it takes a bit of begging to have him give in, and he begrudgingly accepts your help. Most of your time together is spent with you oversharing some more about your friends, and Namjoon tells you the story of how he found Sugar in the woods a couple of years ago and decided to give him a home.
You’re not sure how many hours have gone by, but once you’ve finally sat down for a glass of water, you notice the color of the sky and how the sun will be setting soon.
“I should go,” you say, ending a story about the senior prank you and Seokjin pulled in high school.
You may be seeing things, but you swear disappointment flickers across Namjoon’s face. “Okay. Do you need me to walk you back?”
“Nope, I know the way.” He walks you to the door, Sugar trailing behind. Biting your lip, you hype yourself up to ask your next question. “Is it okay if I come to hang out with you again in a couple of days? I have work tomorrow and the next, but I’ll be free on Saturday.”
“Sure,” he says hastily, clearing his throat afterward. “I mean, okay if you want. We’ll be here.”
“Okay. See you then.” You want to spend the rest of the evening standing here, taking in his beautiful features, but you know you’ve got to get home before dark. You have half a mind to ask Namjoon how he keeps safe out here in the middle of the forest with the wolves about, but he seems to be doing well considering he’s been here for years. You’ll ask him next time.
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Venturing into the forest on your days off quickly becomes a habit. Some of your off days coincide with your mom’s days off from the hospital, so sometimes you end up spending time with her or Seokjin when he inserts himself into your home as usual.
On days you can get away from them and make excuses with your other friends, you find yourself in the forest with Namjoon, slowly learning more about plants and nature in general. He’s the first person you’ve ever met who loves all things green and natural. It gives you a new appreciation for the world around you.
Namjoon himself is so fascinating. He started as what seemed to you at the time, a timid man. This is still true, but as weeks with him turn into two months, you start to see more about him come out. He’s funny and can keep you laughing for hours. He’s so bright - the smartest person you’ve ever met, and that amazes you. He hates cooking but learned it for survival from his mother when she was with him.
You learn so much more about Namjoon, like his likes and dislikes (he’s never had mint chocolate chip ice cream but swears he’d hate it), while also still not knowing so much about him. The other layer to Namjoon seems to be a sad, secretive one. Whenever he brings up his family, he’s quick to change the subject, and you can see the way his expression shifts into a more melancholy one.
Even so, you can’t ignore the very real stirrings in your heart every time you see him smile or hear him laugh. You don’t deny the way your skin seems to tingle every time your hands brush when you take something from him, or your arm grazes his when you’re in the garden next to him. When it would happen at first, Namjoon would flinch away and make up an excuse, but as of late, he seems to keep his arm resting against yours or let his fingers linger over yours for a little while longer.
One evening when you’re going to leave, he asks if you want to stay and watch the stars with him.
“I promise, it’s a beautiful sight to see. Far away enough from town that you can even see constellations.”
You glance up at the quickly setting sun. It’s getting dark. As much as you’d love to, you can’t.
“I want to, but… I can’t. It’s getting dark, and I have to be home. The wolves, you know?”
An unreadable expression washes over Namjoon’s face. “The wolves.” He says flatly.
“Yeah, I mean I know you live out here and you’re safe, which I’ve never asked you about, but I’m sure you know the stories about them and what they do.”
“I do.”
“Right, so I’ve gotta head home.”
“Of course. Be safe.” Namjoon’s back in his cottage, door shut and locked without a goodbye
His tone was back to what it seemed to be when you first met him, but you don’t question him. As much as you enjoy spending time with Namjoon, he does get moody quite often, so you don’t think anything of it. At first.
The next few days you visit him, he doesn’t turn you away, but he seems to have reverted to being slightly standoffish towards you like he was when you first met him. It bothers you, and you want so bad to ask, but you don’t want to drive him away anymore. He’ll come around soon and talk to you.
Well, at least you thought. A few days later, you find something that seems to answer all of your questions about Namjoon and the way he is.
While he’s making lunch for you both, you wander into the living room, your hands sweeping over his bookcase as you eye the titles. Some of them you recognize and some of them you don’t. You’re not paying too much attention and end up dragging your nails over a book spine that is already torn, tearing it a little more.
“Fuck,” you mumble, checking over your shoulder to make sure Namjoon hasn’t appeared in the doorway. You hear him still rattling around in the kitchen and slide the book off of the shelf to inspect the tear. The front and back are blank save for ‘Kim’ carved into the leather on the front cover. The book has seen better days with other tears and scratches over the aging leather.
It’s thick and the pages are worn, so you carefully turn them as you flip through it. At first, it looked like a heavy novel, but you notice the words on the pages are handwritten, and there are photos glued or taped throughout. Every few chunks of pages have different handwriting in it, so you assume it has to be a diary, especially when most of the pictures show a lot of people that look like Namjoon.
“His family’s diary?” You think to yourself as you flip through it. You land on some pages that don’t seem as worn and can’t help but read a bit of it. None of it makes much sense, but you spot a page with Namjoon’s name on it and stop to read.
The humans are moving in fast. They killed Jungho last week. Caught him when he had just shifted back into his hairless form and shot him dead. I slipped away before they saw me, but I have to be the one to tell Hyuna now.
I don’t know what to do. We can’t just leave. Geongmin isn’t even walking yet. I’ll have to tell Namjoon a little about what’s going on. He’ll need to know what to do in case something happens.
“Y/n,” Namjoon’s voice behind you has you nearly leaping in the air as you hug the diary to your rapidly beating heart. His eyes dart down to the book in your arms as they widen and dart back up to meet your gaze.
“Namjoon… are you a…” You don’t know how to say it. You’re scared to ask, but you have to know. It would make so much sense. It explains why he lives in the forest alone and isolated. Why he remains unhurt and alive out here and why he never goes into your town and only the one your grandma lives in since they don’t tell wolf stories over there.
“A wolf?” he finishes, running his fingers through his hair. “Yes.” He sets his jaw as he says it and stares at you straight on.
The silence echoes loudly between the two of you, both unsure what to say or do next.
“I should be scared. I should run out after begging you not to kill me.” You close the book and slide it back onto the shelf.
You slowly approach Namjoon and he flinches when you’re much closer to him.  “That’s what everyone in town has told me my whole life; that if I’m faced with a wolf, I’ll surely die and that’d be the last of me…but I’m not scared. You wouldn’t hurt me.”
He shakes his head furiously. “Never.”
Nodding, you go over to Namjoon’s old leather couch, sinking into the cushion, leaving room for him next to you. He perches next to you and lets out a tired breath. His fingers tap against his knee before he begins speaking more than you think you’ve ever heard him do since you met him.
You learn that the wolves lived here for many, many years alone. They fled to this country and traveled around from town to town for years.  There was a war in his home country that had many people fleeing which included many families, including his own.
It’s how they learned English and began to teach it down the generational lines. His bloodline in particular and a few others ended up here in this town eventually, and when they found that no one inhabited the land for miles, they decided this was their new home.
Years and years went by, and Namjoon’s kind (shapeshifters, they preferred to be called) lived in peace and were happy. But one day, a large group of settlers stumbled upon them, including the man who founded the town you lived in. They found them and immediately decided they wanted this land. The shapeshifters wanted to cohabitate, but the humans refused, and a small war broke out, leaving most of the shapeshifters dead.
They all ended up retreating deep into the forest, trying to hide in the cover of darkness, but then some humans, whom his people called hunters, decided they couldn’t even have that and would seek the shapeshifters out in the woods just to kill them. They murdered them under the guise of protecting their town when it was just an excuse to wipe out his people.
This continued constantly until Namjoon was seventeen and was the only one left. His family left him this cottage where they all lived until they were found out in the woods and taken from him. He hasn’t left simply because he doesn’t know where to go. This is where he grew up and the only place he knows. He’s just lucky that the cottage is deep in the forest enough that the hunters haven’t found him.
With each word in his story, you can see how truly sad he is. His shoulders slump more and more, and he sounds as if he’s choking on each word. Your heart aches not only for him but his family and friends and everyone that was here.
When tears well in Namjoon’s glassy brown eyes, you can’t help but do the same and, without thinking, reach out to grab him, pulling him into your arms. Namjoon doesn’t pull away but does the opposite. He buries his head into your chest and begins to sob into your shirt. The sound shatters your heart, as your own tears silently slide down your cheeks.
You’ve only known Namjoon for nearly three months, but your pull to him is undeniable. You care about this man and can see just how good of a person he is. He’s so different from anyone you’ve known but in the best way possible. He’s so pure and loving; he doesn’t deserve any of the terrible tragedies that have fallen on him. There is no way this is a lie with the way that sobs wrack his large frame, which seems so much smaller gripping you tight.
Namjoon stays wrapped around you for you’re not sure how long, but you let him stay until he pulls back. His face is puffy and red, and he avoids eye contact with you.
“Sorry. I didn’t mean to -” you stop him by placing your finger over his lips.
“Don’t. Please don’t apologize. I should be the one apologizing to you. Like, I know I wasn’t involved, but fuck, I can’t even express how sorry I am. I know it won’t change anything, but I’m so sorry that humans are so shitty - that we are so, so terrible. I’m sorry that people I know are involved in all of this, and… this is all so horrendous, and I don’t have words to properly convey how sorry I am but know that I am so deeply sorry.”
He nods, something indescribable swimming in his eyes. “You know you’re the only human that I’ve seen in this town that didn’t want to kill me,” he laughs, but there’s no real humor behind it.
“Namjoon…” you go to reach for him, but he shakes his head.
“Would you mind if I had some time to myself? I just need to, I don’t know, maybe cry some more?”
“Of course!” You rush to stand up and grab your bag off of the floor. “I’ll stop by tomorrow?” You ask more than tell him and he agrees.
You get home in record time, mostly because your mind is elsewhere the entire time.
Namjoon is a wolf. You’ve been spending nearly all of your free time with a wolf, and you aren’t dead. He’s the only wolf left in town. People that you know, that you’ve grown up with, killed his entire bloodline. The wolf force is nothing but murderous hunters, and it’s likely the entire police force knows. Everyone in power knows. All of the older people in town likely know.
This is overwhelming, and your head is spinning with all of this new information. You briefly wonder if Seokjin knows all of this. He can’t because there’s no way he’d pursue that work. Right?
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You get the chance to wonder even more that night when Seokjin pops up at your house for dinner. With Angela working, it’s just you, your mom, and Seokjin who sit down to eat, but you barely have an appetite as you’re still digesting everything from earlier.
“How’s training going? For the wolf force.” You ask Seokjin after he finishes talking about his dad’s new promotion.
“Good. I’ve finished a lot of the weapons training. Dad says I’ll be able to do regular patrols sooner than he thought I would.”
“What does patrol consist of again?”
Seokjin gives you a puzzled look but swallows his food to continue. “Well, it’s keeping everyone in town safe. Riding around the perimeter of the forest and keeping an eye out for any wolf sightings.”
“And what do you do if you see one?” You can’t help the challenging tone you take on now that you know what you do. There’s no way you can ever feel comfortable with this again.
“We kill it, Red.” He says matter-of-factly, shoving more pasta in his mouth after.
Your stomach churns at these words. The idea of anything happening to Namjoon hurts more than you can explain. The rest of dinner is silent on your end while Seokjin and your mom keep any signs of conversation going. He tries to ask what’s wrong before he leaves, but you simply say you’ve felt sick all day, which isn’t a complete lie.
The next day you’re due in the bakery in the morning, and the day seems to drag on before you can leave and you head straight to Namjoon’s. He’s in his garden when you arrive and doesn’t look up when you walk over and kneel next to him.
“I didn’t think you’d come back.” He speaks up first.
“Why would you think that?”
Setting the small shovel down he glances over at you. “Why do you think? I’m the big bad wolf that lives in the woods and kills people, remember? That’s what you’ve been taught your whole life. I figured I’d never see you again.”
“Hey,” you reach out and gingerly touch his arm.
“Remember when I said I wasn’t scared? I was telling the truth. I don’t think I’ll ever be scared of you. You have dimples deeper than the sea, for fucks sake. How can I be scared of that?” You don’t miss the blush that creeps onto Namjoon’s beautiful face, and the sight allows you to relax.
“Well, if it makes you feel better, there’s seriously no reason to ever think I’d hurt you. I’ve never hurt anyone in my entire life. I know that the whole town thinks we’ve killed innocent hikers or whatever, but that’s not true. I’ve watched campers walk too far into the woods and never come back. You may not know it, but the forest goes deeper than most people have ever been.”
“I had no idea. We were never really thought much about the nature out here.”
“And you know, even when my dad first told me what was happening to us, I never felt any sense of revenge. I’ve never wanted to hurt or kill anyone, even though I’ve seen people I know killed with my own eyes. Is that weird?”
“Of course not,” you scoot closer to him, your sides pressed against one another. “You’d be justified in feeling revenge if you wanted it, but you’re way too sweet. I don’t think you have a mean bone in your body.”
“Thanks for saying that.” The words are low, but you still hear them.
The relationship you have with Namjoon shifts after that, seemingly even more than it had leading up to finding out who he is. More lingering touches and more occupying each other's spaces.
It’s not long before you and Namjoon share your first kiss. It happens one afternoon when you’re helping him make lunch. You get ketchup on your cheek, and when Namjoon reaches over to wipe it off, his finger stays, and your eyes meet. It’s terribly cliche, but neither of you cares. When Namjoon’s plump, soft lips finally meet yours, nothing else matters.
Your hands wind around Namjoon’s neck and he lets you enjoy the warmth of him for a few more minutes before pulling back.
“No, why?” you pout and he laughs.
“Lunch isn’t done cooking yet.” He kisses your forehead and gently pushes you aside.
Unfortunately for your growing want for him, Namjoon continues to deny you whenever you’re kissing or holding each other when you try to initiate things further. You’ve attempted to, of course, because how could you not with the way he looks, but he always stops things before they go too far. He keeps mentioning how he’s not only never had sex and never been in a relationship, but he doesn’t even know what’ll happen if he does so with a human.
You don’t want to pressure him, but your desire lingers each time his built arms wrap around you or his full lips engulf your own.
“We’ll try it soon,” he always says, and you promise to wait and be more patient, even if you fantasize about him taking you every night when you’re alone.
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The weeks go on, turning into months and soon you’ve known Namjoon for nearly half a year, and you see each other nearly every day. You’ve been romantically together for a month before you decide to claim him as your boyfriend and he does the same with you as his girlfriend.
You’ve never cared for anyone as strongly as you do for Namjoon, and he always says the same about you. Your excuses to your mom and friends somewhere along the line transformed to you going to take bike rides to work out and get more active and surprisingly, they all seem to buy it. Except for Seokjin. He asks more questions out of everyone, but you always manage to shake him.
Today you’re celebrating Namjoon’s birthday, so you pack a backpack with a small cake you asked Seokjin’s mom to make (to satisfy a craving you said). You also slip on the only cute lingerie set you own (a powder blue number) that you hope will show Namjoon that you really want to take the next step with him, no matter the chance.
As you’re mounting your bike, Seokjin pulls up.
“Hey, Jin.” you do your best to hide your lack of excitement.
“Where are you headed?” He inquires, and you know he has many more questions.
“Oh just to my grandma’s. Dropping some stuff from my mom.”
“Ah, well hop in! I’m off today and I miss granny! I know she misses me.” Seokjin boasts, moving to get back in his car.
“No, that’s okay. She isn’t feeling well, so I’m just stopping by quickly. She wouldn’t want you to get sick.”
“I’ll just poke my head in, that’s all. She would make an exception for her Jinnie.”
“Seriously, it’s okay, you know she’s serious about her health and everyone around her! I’ll tell her you said hi, though!” Before Seokjin can object again like you know he will, you pedal away, yelling over your shoulder that you’ll text him later to meet up. He calls your name, but you ignore him and keep pushing forward.
You breathe a sigh of relief as your mind shifts to Namjoon as you bike through town and the woods in what you feel like is record time. When you arrive at the cottage, you leave your bike outside as usual and let yourself in. Namjoon is on his couch, book in hand when you come in.
“Happy birthday!” You cheer, setting your backpack down gingerly before all but diving into Namjoon’s lap.
He lets out an ‘oof’ at you crashing into him but doesn’t push you off. “Thank you, baby.” As usual, the pet name sends a shiver through you as you bring your lips to his and kiss him hard.
“I brought you a cake,” you breathe once you pull away. Namjoon’s eyes light up, and he almost looks more excited about the premise of a cake than his girlfriend draping her body over him. Once you’re up, you pull him behind you and carry your backpack into the kitchen.
“Ta-dah!” You present the cake in a flourish when you fish it out of your bag and set it on the table. “I’m so sorry I forgot to buy you a phone, but I will tomorrow! I hate not being able to speak to you when we’re apart and…” That’s when you notice the tears almost welling in Namjoon’s eyes as he admires the dessert.
“Wh-what’s wrong?” Did I do something wrong? Is the cake ugly?”
“Nothing! It’s just that, the last time I celebrated my birthday was when my parents were…” he trails off, and you rush over, pulling his face to yours to place soft kisses all over his face.
“Hey, hey, it’s okay. We can do the cake later if you want?”
“Okay. I just ate so I’m a little full anyway, but I do want it!”
“Well, I know how we can work up an appetite for cake.”
Namjoon cocks an eyebrow at you. “Oh?”
Smirking, you pull away and shrug your jacket off, then pull your shirt over your head. Namjoon’s breath audibly catches in his throat at the sight of the soft blue lace that cups your breasts. You shimmy out of your jeans slowly so he can follow how good your legs look in the matching thong and garters.
“Wow.” Namjoon admires.
“Are you gonna unwrap your present?” You pout, fingers playing with the straps of your bra. You see the inner turmoil behind his eyes as he weighs his choices, and you instantly feel guilty. “We don’t have to if you truly, genuinely don’t want to.”
Namjoon only gives it a few more seconds before crossing the room and pulling you into a kiss. There’s a sound outside then that has you both freezing as you wait for a few seconds before you hear scratching at the door.
“Sugar,” he mumbles, going over to let the cat in. The black cat rushes in and sits by the door, staring outside.
Paying him no mind, Namjoon comes back to you and tosses you over his shoulder, making you squeal.
“Are you sure you want this?” Namjoon asks as he carries you upstairs to his room.
“I wouldn’t be here in what barely constitutes as clothing if I didn’t.” You bounce slightly when he tosses you onto the bed and quickly drapes his large frame over yours.
“I just wanted to make sure… I don’t want to hurt you,” his words are laced with concern, but the drop in his tone still has you biting your lip and spreading your legs open almost immediately.
Namjoon’s hand finds yours above your head and cradles it before he moves to place kisses on your fingers. His lips move down your arm to your neck, your cheeks, then your lips. As romantic as he is, the want that you feel for him is immeasurable.
The kiss is short but sloppy, your tongues frantic as they meet in your mouth. Your fingers move up to tangle in his hair and when you yank the strands, Namjoon lets out a hiss that you feel shoot directly to your core.
He sits up and kneels, yanking his shirt off and tossing it elsewhere in the room. Your eyes sweep over his body. The taut, sculpted muscles of his abdomen are enough to send you into even more of a needy frenzy. You don’t know why you never thought about just how good he’d look without a shirt, but you never want him to wear one again after this.
Namjoon nuzzles into your neck, leaving kisses and nips on your soft skin in between inhales of breath. “You have no idea how good you always smell,” he speaks into your neck. “Always so damn sweet.” He works his way down to your chest, your stomach, stopping at your clothed sex. He kisses his way back up your body, his hands running over every part of you he can touch.
“You’re so beautiful, Y/n. Every single part of you deserves to be worshipped.” He whispers each time his lips meet your skin. He lavishes you with more compliments as he kisses every part of you not covered by fabric, then moves up to help you take your bra off.
At the sight of your bare breasts, you watch Namjoon’s pupils dilate, his hand immediately reaching to tweak one of your nipples, and you gasp. He smiles, bending to take your other nipple into his mouth and bites down on the nub.
“Ah!” You squeal, his tongue quickly lapping at it after biting, then he sucks harshly in time with the way he rolls your other nipple between his calloused fingers. He continues kneading at your soft flesh, wetness pooling in your panties more with each suck and each tug. You’re torn between begging him to touch you where you’re truly aching for him most and not wanting him to stop.
As if reading your mind at that moment, he releases your nipple with a ‘pop’, moving to kiss the valley between your breasts, then back up to your neck. His large, warm hands trail down your body, fingers hooking into your panties to yank them down your legs and tossing them somewhere in the room. His digits immediately move to your pussy, spreading your already moist lips apart.
The sensation causes you to jump, a whimper falling from your mouth, making Namjoon grunt. His teeth nibble harder at your skin as he plunges a single thick finger into you.
“Oh!” You gasp, already feeling full, and he hasn’t even properly started yet. With his finger pushing inside of you, Namjoon finally leaves the bitten skin of your neck, no doubt littered with marks, to shift down your body. He situates himself between your legs, blowing warm air onto your wetness. You feel his nose nuzzling against your inner thigh, then against your clit and you jolt again.
“Fucking delicious,” he murmurs before surging forward, lips latching onto your clit and sucking hard.
“Namjoon - fuck!” You shriek, pleasure shooting through your whole body as he suckles at your sensitive bud, his finger never ceasing its movement in you. He keeps a steady pace of sucking your clit and fingering you, eventually stuffing a second digit in you. You can’t help but reach down to grip his blonde locks, tugging at the hair while you squirm.
Namjoon lets out grunts and low groans as he fucks you with his fingers, and right when you feel as though you may cum, he slips his fingers out, you whimpering at the loss.
He makes up for it quick. As soon as he sucks your juices off of his hand, he dives into your pussy again, this time tongue first, and you nearly pass out. His tongue pistons in and out of you, eating you out as if you’re his last meal. His thumb furiously rubs your clit, the intensity only serving to have you letting out various high-pitched noises as you beg him to let you cum.
“Joon, please, fuck please, let me cum…”  you plead as you hold his head in place as you move your hips to match his tongue’s movement, chasing your end as it creeps closer.
“Mmhmm,” he mumbles into you, tongue-fucking you to orgasm, his name tumbling from your lips.
When Namjoon finally comes up for air, he’s beaming down at you, face glistening as your juices dry on his skin.
“You taste even better than I thought you would,” he compliments, a blush creeping up your neck at his words. He leans down to meet your lips, and you taste yourself on his tongue as he moves it into your mouth, your body reacting to him instantly, your hips pushing up towards him with more want.
“Well, how about you find out if I also feel as good as you thought.” You purr when he pulls back, desperately waiting for him to fuck you.
“I want to, so bad,” he sighs, fingertips ghosting over your skin as he surveys your naked body underneath him.
“So what are you waiting for?” The playfulness leaves his eyes for a second, and you can tell his earlier worry of hurting you is resurfacing. “Joon, please. I want you to,” to drive the point home further, you flip onto your stomach, getting on all fours to present yourself to him. “You won’t hurt me, just please fill me up.”
Since you’re looking at him over your shoulder, you watch as the worry etched onto his face twists into something much more desperate, feral even.
“Are you sure?” He grits, bottom lip bit between his teeth while his hands ghost over your ass.
“Namjoon, please take me,” you beg, pushing your ass into his still clothed crotch, feeling just how much he truly wants you. “Now!”
Something akin to a growl comes from him as he tugs his pants and underwear down, his erection visible. Your mouth falls open at the sheer girth of him, and only momentarily do you wonder if he’ll even fit. The stickiness between your legs doesn’t care, though, as you quite literally throb at the thought of him shoving his cock into you.
Namjoon’s hands grip your ass, pulling you closer to him, his hardness rubbing against your pussy, so close to where you want him.
“You have to tell me if you want to stop okay? Say the word and I’ll stop.” He assures you, sounding just like the sweet, thoughtful Namjoon that you’ve gotten to know.
Instead of responding verbally, you simply nod and maneuver your body enough that you can push back against him again. This time his cockhead just barely slips between your lips, both of you letting out identical moans at the smallest amount of relief to your want.
Namjoon takes this as the okay he needs, slowly plunging his thickness into you as a long, low whine slips out of you. Once he’s sheathed completely inside of you, he stills, adjusting on his knees behind you.
“Fuck yes,” he sighs, squeezing the flesh of your ass before he begins moving his hips, matching sounds of pleasure shared between the two of you. With a firm hold on you, Namjoon’s pace quickens, the sound of skin slapping skin rings out in the room, mixing with your desperate sounds.
“Y-yes, Joon!”
“Feel good, baby?” He coos, his caring words a stark contrast from the bruising thrusts he’s subjecting you to.
“So good, Joon! So good!” you shout, savoring the rough drag of his cock against your soft walls. You know you’ll be sore tomorrow, but it’ll be a welcomed pain; your body has never known pleasure like this and you’re hooked already.
“Fuck, you look so beautiful like this, stuffed full of my cock.” He snarls, the speed of his thrusts becoming rougher, his cock sinking even deeper into you.
“You’re taking me so well, baby.” His words are only serving to spur you on more, your body on fire as he quite literally fucks you into the mattress.
Your hands grip at the sheets attempting to anchor yourself. “Namjoon, fuck!”
“Ugh, I love hearing you say my name. Say it again, baby.” He swivels his hips when he says that, his cock easily brushing against your g-spot, making your eyes cross and your stomach twist.
“Namjoon!” You shriek, so close to your second orgasm, this one has you convulsing before it even hits. “I’m so close, please!”
“M-me too. Fuck, Y/n, I’m gonna cum. It - it’s gonna be a lot and -”
“Just do it, please!” You’re desperate, your voice sounding hysterical as you are so, so close. Namjoon harshly hums, only a few more wild thrusts have you finally coming undone, a scream of his name ripping from your throat and into the pillow your face is buried in.
Namjoon seems to roar as his thick cum pumps into you, and his cock swells both painfully while also being pleasurable. His hips stutter in motion, and his heavy, hot body drapes over you as he keeps filling you up, your walls stretching to accommodate him.
You whine, shifting to find a more comfortable position to no avail. “Joon,” you pout, body still shaking uncontrollably.
“I know, baby. It’ll be over soon.” He peppers kisses all over your shoulder blades while rubbing comforting circles on your back.
He’s right, as the pressure does eventually start to lessen, and soon enough, it’s gone and he’s able to slip his softening cock out of your sore hole. You immediately flop onto the bed, legs made of jelly and your body exhausted.
“Knotting?” You rasp once you find your voice again. Namjoon sputters in response, opening and closing his mouth with no answer. You laugh, slowly turning to your side to look at him. His honeyed skin is covered in a sheen of sweat and his hair is flat to his head and even still, he’s just as beautiful as always. “It’s okay. I kind of looked some stuff up online. I was just curious,” you supply, laughing awkwardly. “Is that weird?”
“O-oh, no! Sorry, I just didn’t know what to say is all. It’s okay; it’s the main reason I was afraid, but at least I don’t have to explain it too much.” He lets out his own nervous laughter, the sweet sound making you smile. Unable to help it, you reach out to cup Namjoon’s face and kiss him, which he immediately returns.
A warmth spreads through your body, your heart feeling full of nothing but the care you feel for Namjoon. “Thank you,” you whisper against his lips.
“Thank you,” he mumbles back, nuzzling his nose against yours and your heart clenches again for him at the gesture.
Fatigue quickly replaces that feeling when you yawn, the mid-afternoon sun coming through the window only serving to make you even cozier. “I think I need a quick nap.” You stretch out, tired joints cracking with each movement.
“We can do that. And then we can have cake when we’re up?”
“Of course,” you chuckle at the eagerness in his voice. Namjoon wraps his arm around you, pulling you closer to him. You snuggle into his bare chest his warm skin and heartbeat easing you into a quick, welcomed sleep.
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Something tells you to open your eyes, and when you do, you notice how dark the room is. It takes only a few seconds before you realize that you’re not in your room, but in Namjoon’s, and the sun has already set.
“Oh, fuck!” You curse, jumping out of bed and scrambling to find your clothes. Your muscles protest, but you ignore it as you scan the floor.
“What’s going on?” Namjoon jolts up and watches you with tired eyes.
“It’s dark, which means my mom is probably home and is wondering where the hell I am. I gotta go home.” You can’t find your lingerie set and decide to just forgo it, rushing downstairs to retrieve your jeans and shirt, still on the kitchen floor.
Namjoon follows behind, pulling on sweatpants along the way. “Get home safe, okay?”
Once your clothes are on, you give him one last kiss for the night as you zip your jacket. “I will. And I’ll come by tomorrow afternoon after I grab you a phone!” You call goodbye and rush out, hopping on your bike to get home. You’re out of breath when you get there, seeing your mom, Angela, and Seokjin’s cars in the driveway.
“Great,” you groan to yourself and steel yourself when you pass the threshold.
“Y/n! Where the hell have you been?!” Your mom shrieks before you even shut the door, Angela following her and frowning.
“I’ve been home since the sun was setting because I was able to leave the hospital early and I find you nowhere to be seen and not answering your phone for either of us!” Your phone had been in your discarded jeans and there was no way you would’ve heard it while you and Namjoon were having sex.
Seokjin comes around the corner, arms crossed and disapproval on his face like some sort of authority figure. “If I hadn’t come by again when you didn’t answer my texts, your mom wouldn’t have even known you were seeing your grandma.”
“I called your grandmother, and she said she hasn’t seen you all day!”
“Yeah, I’m-”
“And I didn’t see you when I was patrolling, Y/n.” Angela cuts in, hands on her hips as she reprimands you. “And I drove all around town, including through the woods.” Angela and your mom may not be married yet, but with them having been together since you were a teenager and her moving in when you left for college, she still, at times, feels like your true second mom.
“You know when I think about it,” your mom starts again. “You’ve barely been home much for weeks except when you’re babysitting or going and coming. What’s going on?!”
You begin to panic, scrambling to come up with an excuse. “I… I’m, I’m just tired of being here, okay!” It’s not a lie, just not the truth to this particular question.
“What?” Your mom asks, only slightly gentler than before.
“I need time to myself! I miss the city, and working these two jobs every day over and over again is so suffocating! I’m a grown woman, and if I want to ride around alone to clear my head, I can, okay?”
Your mom doesn’t say anything, but her face shows sadness. “Y/n, I didn’t realize. I knew you missed the city, but I didn’t know it was this bad.” The guilt in her voice makes you feel guilty, but you push it down to get through this conversation.
“Mom, I love you, I do, but I need to be able to take time to myself. I’ll be thirty soon, and I still live with my mother. I should be allowed to be alone.”
“I’m sorry, you’re right. I just love and care about you, and I want you to be safe.” She softens and comes over to hug you.
“I know.”
“But I also know I can be a little too overprotective.” She pulls back and offers you a smile. “I won’t breathe down your neck about where you’re going, but I still want responses to my texts, at least. I just need to know you’re okay.”
“I can do that. Sorry to make you worry.”
“Yeah, you better be. Don’t do that again.”
“I won’t.”
“I know you won’t.” She gives you a stern look and lets you go, leaving room for Angela to come over and hug you. “Now that I’m done having a heart attack, I’ll order dinner. My nerves are too shot to cook. Pizza?”
“Half black olives.” You and Angela answer in unison.
“Got it. Seokjin, will you stay for dinner?” You forgot that your best friend is still here, looking angry in the background during the whole exchange.
“No. I’ll be leaving as soon as I use the bathroom.” He hurries down the hall, and you take your leave, saying you’re going to go shower before the pizza is here.
Once in your room, you put your phone on the charger and move to pull your shirt over your head, but Seokjin barging into your room makes you scream and pull your shirt back down.
“Jin, are you insane?! How about you knock first!” He shuts the door behind him, fury clouding his features.
“Did you leave your little blue bra at your boyfriend’s house?” He says with too much venom in his voice. Your stomach sinks at his words.
“What did you just say?”
“Or did the wolf rip it off of you as he bred you?”
“Seokjin, get the fuck out!”
“No! Not until you tell me why the hell you’re running around in the woods and fucking a wolf! Is that why you’ve been so distant these past few months? I knew something was going on, but I had no idea it’d be this!” Seokjin spits, disgust in his tone.
“It’s none of your fucking business what I’ve been doing! And did you follow me earlier?!”
“I sure did because I knew you were lying to me. I’ve known you were lying every time you ran off mysteriously, but I finally caught you. How could you, Red?!”
“I can’t believe you followed me. And what, were you fucking peeping in on us?”
“I didn’t mean to see all that I saw! I knew you were lying so I followed you with my car but stayed far enough that you didn’t notice. Then when you got off your bike and walked through the woods, it wasn’t hard to follow behind you. I had my gun on me because we were going through the woods where we shouldn’t be going. I watched you go into his house, and I waited, then I saw you in one of the windows talking to him. Then you were kissing and getting naked for him, and I wanted to burst in and drag you out so badly.”
You’re furious, and it’s taking everything in you not to haul off and punch your best friend. “I don’t even know what to say to you right now. I seriously can’t believe you.”
“I could say the same to you! I just don’t understand what’s going through your thick skull doing the reckless shit you’re doing.”
“Alright, first the fuck of all, don’t you ever follow me again! What you did is such a gross invasion of my privacy.”
“Oh please, I was -”
“Second of all, how do you know who he is?”
“Come on, Red, it’s not hard to figure out. No human is going to live in the woods on their own. If they did, they surely wouldn't be alive right now.”
“Right, because you hunters wouldn’t kill a human, you only wipe out non-humans just for the hell of it.”
Seokjin scoffs. “Is that what your wolf told you? And you believe that animal?”
“He’s not an animal!” You shout, hoping no one downstairs is hearing any of this. “He told me about his past, Jin. Hunters, your ancestors, your grandfather, and your father, they’ve killed off his entire family.”
He doesn’t respond, only looking you up and down, shaking his head. “I can’t believe you. After everything that’s happened to this town and everything the members of my family have done for everyone and you’re saying this. You’re a fucking traitor.”
Seokjin’s words hurt, even though you’re furious with him. You’ve never been in a serious argument, but this just seems to keep escalating. “Seokjin, you need to do your research. The history of this town and your family is very different from what we’ve been told.”
A bitter laugh falls from his lips. “I thought you were smart, Red, but you’re acting so stupid right now.”
“Seokjin -”
“I was going to ask you to marry me!” He screams, face red and brows knitted in the angriest way possible.
“What? Seokjin, we’ve had this talk. I’ve told you before that I don’t like you like that.”
“Right, because you’d rather run around fucking wild dogs. I suppose he’s made you his bitch now?”
“Fuck you!” You yell, lunging across the room at Seokjin, fists ready, but he’s faster and pins your arms behind your back.
“Whatever, Red. I hope you enjoyed your little Twilight fantasy. You just ruined any future we could’ve had.” He roughly lets you go, and you stumble to back away.
“Seokjin, you need to think about this! Why would I lie to you?”
“You’re clearly brainwashed, and I don’t want to deal with this, or you, anymore.” He storms out then, slamming your bedroom door behind him.
You run to your bedroom window and throw it open. Poking your head out, you see Seokjin leave soon after and call him as he walks to his car, but he ignores you. He looks at you before peeling away from the curb but says nothing.
Having heard some of the commotion, your mom comes upstairs to ask what’s wrong. You quickly come up with a lie, saying that you and Seokjin fought about you wanting to move back to the city.
“Oh sweetie, you know Seokjin cares about you, that’s all. I’m sure he’ll come around. You two have never fought for long.”
You hope so, but you doubt it. You barely eat any of your pizza or get any sleep. Seokjin continues to ignore your calls and texts. If you can just get him when he’s calm then maybe you can explain everything, and he can even meet Namjoon and hear it straight from him. Seokjin is stubborn, but there’s no way he’d stay that mad at you forever.
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The following morning, you feel like shit, but get dressed and go downstairs anyway. You’re babysitting tonight but want to get Namjoon a phone before then.
“Morning,” you mumble to your mom sitting at the kitchen island as you pour coffee into a travel mug.
“Morning. You’ve just missed all the fuss.” She says, scrolling through her phone.
“What do you mean?”
“Angela just hurried out of here saying there was a wolf spotting last night.” You nearly overfill the mug at her words, almost missing the point where you need to stop pouring.
“Yeah, apparently Jin saw it last night on the way home. Someone on the force called her to tell her. He’s leading his father and the rest of the wolf force into the woods this morning to find it.”
Panic overcomes you instantly. Namjoon. Seokjin is going to lead them to Namjoon.
“I need to meet Chaerin!” You call your mom, already running to the front door for your sneakers from yesterday. You’ve got to get to Namjoon first. You have to.
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You drop your bike into a bush at the beginning of the clearing to Namjoon’s. You run the rest of the way as fast as your legs can carry you, leaves and twigs snapping beneath your sneakers. When you reach the cottage, you’re out of breath and panting, but the only thing that matters is getting to Namjoon.
Fumbling with the key, you finally get the door unlocked, barging in as he’s coming out of the bathroom.
“Y/n, what’s going on?”
“We have to go, now!” You walk around the small house, trying to identify anything of value that he should pick up.
“Go where? What’s happening?” Namjoon grabs your wrist, turning you to look at him. “Talk to me.”
Fighting back tears, you look at him, heart hurting. This is all your fault, and the guilt is immeasurable.
“Joon, the hunters know you’re here. They’re talking about coming out here today to… get you. We need to leave right now. Please.”
Fear visibly overcomes him as his eyes quickly glance around the house. “Okay,” he breathes. “Let’s get out of here.”
He packs a bag of some of his things while you pick Sugar up, gently placing the cat in a backpack. He purrs the entire time, not even aware of what’s happening.
“We just need to make it through the forest and across the bridge to the next town over!” You call through the house. “The wolf force can’t do anything to you over there.”
Namjoon comes into the room with a duffel bag in hand. “Sounds good. I’m rea-” He freezes, head whipping around to the front of the house without a sound. You try to listen too, straining to hear anything, but you don’t. You want to ask what it is, but that’s when the distinct sound of snapping twigs approaching reaches your ears.
“They’re here,” Namjoon whispers, followed by a loud knock on the door.
You both freeze, holding your breath in hopes that they’ll go away. You have no such luck as another knock against the wooden door rings out.
“Hello?! This is the Wolf Force! I’m gonna need you to open the door.” You recognize the voice of Seokjin’s father and grit your teeth.
“Fuck… okay I’ll answer it.” You whisper, and Namjoon shakes his head. “That’s Seokjin’s dad. If he sees me, maybe he’ll go away.”
“But what if he doesn’t?”
“Then wait by the backdoor with Sugar, and if it goes bad I’ll shut the door, and we’ll go out the back.” Namjoon still doesn’t like this but agrees. You take a deep breath and open the front door.
Mr. Kim is surprised to see you and backs up to inspect you. Behind him are the other members of the wolf force that you recognize from town, including Angela and Seokjin, who is directly behind his father. There’s fiery anger in his eyes that you do your best to return when your eyes meet.
“Y/n? What are you doing out here?” Mr. Kim asks. He tries to look around you, but you keep the front door closed, save for enough space for you to partially step out.
“This is a cottage I found recently so I’m just hanging out. I don’t think anyone lives here, so I’ve just been coming here.” You hope it doesn’t sound like as much of a lie as you think it does.
“So you found a random house in the forest and have just been staying in it?” Angela interjects, eyeing you carefully.
“Yeah, “your chuckle sounds nervous, and you want to kick yourself. “You know I love my mom, but I need my space.”
Mr. Kim doesn’t believe you. “Right… and what were you doing out in the forest this far to find it?”
“Oh, I followed an injured rabbit out here weeks ago and stumbled upon it.” Everyone surrounding the house seems to adjust their guns as you speak subtly, and the dread in the pit of your stomach is only growing. “Don’t worry. It was daytime, so no worries.”
“Seokjin says he saw a wolf walking around very early this morning and that it ran in this direction.”
Your eyes meet your best friend’s again and stay locked on him as you speak. “Oh wow, well luckily I haven’t seen any, and I didn’t run into any when I came out here. Maybe it went another direction you didn’t see.”
“I highly doubt that, Red.”
“Well, Jin, maybe you just didn’t see what happened very well.”
“I know what I saw!” Seokjin snaps. His father places a hand on his shoulder to calm him down.
“Look, Y/n, I don’t know what’s going on here, but we’ll need to check the house.”
“For what?”
“Y/n, you know what.” The rest of the force slowly advances towards you. This is only escalating more, and you can tell. You only know the basics of the wolf force from what Seokjin and Angela have told you, but when they want to sweep an area for wolves, they do it. You don’t think they’ll hurt you since they know you, but they will force their ways in since they aren't buying your story. You can’t let them hurt Namjoon. You won’t let them.
“Oh, for wolves? So you can continue murdering them?”
“Excuse me?” Mr. Kim balks.
“Just cut the bullshit.” Whatever’s going to happen will be bad, so why not make your feelings very clearly known. “I know the truth. I know that the wolf force is just an excuse for you all to murder innocent people for existing.”
“You don’t know what you’re talking about, Y/n. Now step aside.” Angela’s tone is stern, but you don’t budge.
“You can lie to my face all you want, but I’m not buying it. And no, I won’t be stepping aside.”
“Y/n!” Mr. Kim bellows, stepping forward once more. “Impeding on the actions of the wolf force is a crime. If you stand in the way of us keeping this town safe, we will be bringing you in.”
You scoff at him, but he doesn’t stand down. This is it - the moment that things will only go from bad to worse. It’s silent for a second with no one moving. You feel a gentle hand on your back from the other side of the door. Your hand that’s holding the door and out of sight from the wolf force, moves slowly, grasping onto Namjoon’s hand and squeezing. He gives you a slight tug, which you know means it’s time to move.
Slipping out of his grasp, you carefully move your hand to the doorknob. No one except Seokjin notices and he’s the one to speak.
“Y/n.” The force glances his way, and you take this opportunity to jerk back inside and slam the door shut, locking it right as Namjoon moves and pushes his nearby console table in front of it.
“Upstairs to my room and out of the window! They’ll no doubt block the back!” He runs upstairs with you on his tail after you’ve grabbed the bag with Sugar from him as bangs sound at the front door.
Just as you reach the large window of Namjoon’s bedroom that faces the side of the house, you both hear a heavy crash as the front door is kicked open.
“Red?!” Seokjin’s voice makes you start to panic. As you know it’ll only take a few minutes before he and the rest of the force find you both up here.
“Hey, listen to me,” Namjoon starts, holding your face to look at him. “This ledge is very narrow, so when I step out of the window, I need you to grab onto my back and don’t let me go, no matter what you do.”
Terrified, you still say yes. You trust Namjoon, no matter what your fears are telling you. Namjoon quickly climbs out of the window, adjusting his bags wrapped around his shoulders, and bends his knees slightly.
“Y/n!” Angela’s voice is close as footsteps begin thudding upstairs.
“Y/n, let’s go!” Namjoon waves for you to climb on. Taking a deep breath and making sure the backpack is securely on your shoulders, you hoist yourself up into the window frame.
“Red - Y/n, stop!” Seokjin’s voice is behind you, and when you whip your head around, you see he’s standing there, gun at his side as he watches you. “Don’t do this. I can make it so that you don’t get in too much trouble. Please come with me.”
You hesitate, only for a second. “What happens to Namjoon?” You don’t miss the dark shadow that casts itself over Seokjin’s features and that’s all you need to know.
Without another word, you latch onto Namjoon’s back, and he leaps from the second story. You feel the ghosting of Seokjin’s fingers on your arm, having been too slow to catch you.
There are still members of the wolf force on the ground who turn towards the sound of Namjoon’s feet hitting the ground with their guns drawn. He doesn’t hesitate as he takes off into the trees, bullets flying past as he weaves and dodges obstacles.
The next town over isn’t that far by bike usually, but you may get there faster with the speed at which Namjoon’s feet are moving. For a second, you only hear the sound of nature whooshing by, but the rumble of ATV motors fills your ears soon after. They’re getting closer, so Namjoon zig zags and goes deeper into the forest, the sounds getting further away.
When you reach a large gathering of trees, Namjoon stops behind one and you get off of his back, both of you sinking to the ground. You can’t hear anything other than your breathing and the faint sounds of the motors.
Namjoon’s face is screwed in concentration as he listens to the sounds surrounding you both.
“They’re heading to the bridge between this town the next.”
“They’re trying to block us from leaving.” You finish his thought. “How far away are we? I couldn’t tell when we left your house.”
“Not too far - a handful of miles maybe. The only issue will be getting around the blockade I’m sure they’re setting up.”
“Can we just keep going through the woods?”
“We can but we’ll have to be fast…” he trails off, eyes darting to you. “I can’t go as quickly as we need to in uh, in this form.” He doesn’t look at you when he says it as if he’s embarrassed.
“Hey, Joon, if you need to shift, please don’t feel like you can’t. I’m okay.” You grasp his hand, placing a kiss on his knuckles. He smiles and kisses your forehead.
“I uh, usually don’t have clothes on for this, so I’m gonna put them in my bag real quick.”
“No need to be so shy, you know. I literally saw you naked yesterday.” Rolling his eyes, Namjoon quickly pulls his clothes off and shoves them into his duffel bag.
“Once I change, you can still talk to me as normal, I just can’t speak back. Grab my bag and hop on my back, and we’ll go. Hold on as tight as you can; I don’t plan on stopping until we’re across town lines.” You nod and watch as Namjoon takes a deep breath before you see it with your own eyes. The tan man with perfect skin and hair shifts in front of you, his long limbs and torso twisting, elongating and changing, and growing honey-colored fur.
In front of you now stands the tallest creature you’ve ever seen before. Taller than any horse or any cow you’ve encountered at childhood petting zoos. Namjoon is just as beautiful as a powerful wolf, his fur looking soft and golden, yellow eyes shining as they meet yours.
Having a real, actual wolf in front of you, you feel no fear. Only fascination and wonder and something that may have been stirring in your heart for Namjoon this whole time the more you get to know him. Seeing him this way, in his other true form, knowing he feels comfortable enough around you to show you this side of him - the word ‘love’ rings in your ears as you look at him.
You snap out of your self-induced trance when he noses at his bag, the signal for you to get moving. You grab the duffel bag, adjusting it across your chest, making sure it’s secure on you. After checking to make sure the backpack still on your back housing Sugar is also safe, you climb onto Namjoon’s back and situate yourself. You bend and wrap your limbs around his body the best you can.
“I’m ready,” you murmur into his fur, but he still hears you. Before you even have a chance to think much else, you feel the fast movement of air around you. The ride is much bumpier than when you were on human-form Namjoon’s back, and you have to make sure you’re clutching him tightly as he weaves through the trees. Your eyes are closed as you burrow your face into his neck and wait to get to a safe spot.
Quicker than you thought, he slows down, and you pop your head up to take in your surroundings. You’re still in the brush, but the bridge is in sight. Police cars and ATVs are lined up in front of it and along the riverbed. You scan the crowd, recognizing nearly every face and feeling nothing but anger. Anger that these people you grew up with would be doing something so terrible and angry that they’re doing this now even when they know you’re involved.
“Are we looking for an opening?” Namjoon grunts at your question, which sounds like an affirmation. You give another once over to the side of the bridge you’re on, just as one of the wolf force members walks away leaving the spot between them and the bridge open with a gap wide enough that Namjoon could probably run through to make it over the river. You point it out to him and he lets out a snuff. He looks at you over his shoulder the best he can and whines quietly.
It’s dangerous and you know that this could end badly if one thing goes wrong. You caress the top of Namjoon’s head and lean down to place a kiss on him. He whines again, then takes a step back. You tighten your arms and legs around him, torn between keeping your eyes open or closing them until it’s over.
You end up opting to keep them open and watch as Namjoon takes off towards the clearing. He’s moving so fast that no one notices him until he comes tumbling out of the trees. The distance to the river isn’t much, and you seem to dodge every obstacle, bullets whizzing over you with each step. You hear a voice that sounds like Angela’s call out your name, but you can’t see her.
Everyone’s face is a blur with how fast you’re going, but the unmistakable expression of anger seems to be shared, except for one face you know to be Seokjin’s. It seems like something akin to sadness maybe or hurt. For a second, you understand it. He’s been your best friend since the two of you were born and because of a lie and violence that started before you even came to be, that friendship is dying instantly.
You give him what might be a comparable expression, even if his gun is raised above you as he does so. Namjoon’s front paws hit the water and he stumbles at the same time that you feel something smash into him. He seems to tumble forward but keeps his balance enough so that you don’t get knocked off. He’s slower but still moving.
You hear more gunshots and it feels like an eternity goes by as Namjoon lumbers to the other side of the river and throws himself onto the wet soil on the other side.
The ground squishes when you fall to the side and onto it. You’re out of breath and panting, but relief floods your senses when you realize you’re lying on the other side in the next town over where they don’t have wolf laws. You’ve made it out.
Sitting up, you see the irate faces of the wolf force staring back at you, powerless. Your eyes meet Angela’s as she says your name, but you don’t respond. Seokjin is next to her and you look at him, unspoken words are exchanged and none of them feel positive. When you finally tear your gaze away from Seokjin and look to Namjoon, you realize why he’s been so quiet.
He’s back in his human form, face contorted in what looks like pain. He’s naked and curled into a ball, blood seeping from a wound on his side. Terror zips through your body like electricity as you watch him bleed.
“Namjoon! Joon, please hold on!!” Your eyes blur with tears.
“Hey, hey. It’s not as bad as it looks, I promise.” He smiles at you, but the expression is switched quickly to a frown.  
“Come on, we can go to my grandmother’s, and she can help. Can you move?”
“Mmhmm,” he tries his best to assure you but fails. After helping him stand up, you take him to off to the side behind a tree, so you can help him get at least his pants on.
You’re more than thankful that your grandmother lives close enough that you and Namjoon can limp there in a reasonable amount of time. When you’re through her door after she answers, she’s ushering Namjoon into her kitchen without hesitation and listening to you tell her, through cries, everything that’s happened. You’ve always been able to tell her anything, so the sight of her, and the worry about Namjoon, all compound and you can’t hold it in anymore.
Once she’s dressed Namjoon’s wound and he’s lying on her couch, you properly explain everything from start to finish. She patiently listens, offering hugs and tissues where needed.
That’s when you find out that she knew all of this, and it’s the reason she left town when she did. She and a lot of the older people in town knew the true intentions of the wolf force and the history of where you live. She was always against it but could never do anything to stop it. She finally was so fed up enough to leave town and tried to get your mom to do so. That discussion caused the argument with your mom who also knew the truth but was against uprooting everything and changing the life both only she and you had known. She had her job, you were almost done with high school, she owned the home you lived in, and she had Angela, who your grandma is also sure pressured her into staying.
The thought of your mom knowing and choosing what she was comfortable with over the horrible truth, frustrates you and you know this will be a heavy conversion to be had - but you’re not ready for that right now. You only think of Namjoon and what your next steps will be.
“Do you two need a place to stay?” Your grandma asks as if reading your mind.
“Yes. I wouldn’t ask, but we didn’t anticipate this happening so fast. I have a good amount of money saved up, but we’ll need more for both of us to survive somewhere. And now I’ll need a new job over here to continue to get the rest of that together.”
“Well, you two are welcomed to my guest room while you’re saving. I’ll talk to some folks around town to see if any of them have any open jobs they need to be filled.”
Your grandma moves to get up, and you can’t help but reach out to place your hand over hers. “Thank you, so much grandma. Thank you for being the only one who understands.”
She places her other hand over yours and squeezes. “Of course. I’m always on your side.”
You smile gratefully, letting go of her hand so she can go into the next room. You’re left alone only for a few seconds before you hear a groaning coming from the living room. You’re through the door in a flash, kneeling on the carpet beside Namjoon, Sugar sitting on the couch above his head already purring to comfort him.
“Y/n?” He asks groggily, squinting his eyes to take in his surroundings.
“Hey, hey I’m right here.” You grab his hand, and he squeezes back, brown eyes finally focusing on your face.
“We made it to your grandma’s.”
“Yeah, we did. You don’t remember getting here?”
“Truth be told I don’t remember much getting from the bridge and then here.” He frowns, lifting his head to inspect his bandaged stomach.
“That’s fair. As soon as she opened the door, you passed out, but grandma says you’ll be alright. The bullet went clean through, so she just had to patch the holes up and cover you up. You need lots of rest, but she doesn’t believe it’s anything worth racking up a hospital bill over unless you want to.”
Namjoon shakes his head. “I know this town is different, but I’m not prepared to see a human doctor for the first time just yet.”
Nodding you lean down to kiss his hand. “I was so scared when you were shot,” you whisper after a minute of silence. “And when you passed out I nearly lost my shit. I’m so glad you’re okay.” Tears begin to well again and you reach up to swipe at your eyes before any can fall.
Namjoon shifts to cradle your face in his hands, his own eyes shining as he meets your gaze. “I can’t leave you. I won’t, not ever. I love you.” The phrase has your breath catching as the tears fall anyway.
“I love you too.” Namjoon leans forward, his lips meeting yours halfway as you share a kiss that makes your heart race. You gasp when you pull away, ignoring how he quite literally, took your breath away in that moment.
Resting your foreheads together, you both smile. Despite your lack of a home, abysmal finances, and no throughout next plan, finally telling Namjoon how you’ve been feeling for him eases that burden off of your shoulders. Those unsaid words are replaced with warmth and relief at him feeling the same as you do.
The two of you stay this way for a little while longer until your grandma comes into the room. She checks Namjoon’s wounds and his vitals while telling you she has a few people who’d help you with a job while you stay with her. Namjoon attempts to butt in to ask more which she shuts down immediately, telling him the only thing he will be doing is resting until his wounds heal. Once that’s done, then he can entertain the idea of a job. He obeys, albeit hesitantly.
Your grandma goes to make lunch after helping Namjoon sit up enough on the couch to see the television. You sit on the floor directly in front of him, still feeling relief at how everything has turned out. You know you’ll still need to have a conversation with your mom about everything, but you’ll call her tomorrow maybe.
Unfortunately, your plan doesn’t go that way, when she barges into your grandma’s house while the three of you are eating, and watching tv, Sugar lounging in the middle of the floor.
She looks bewildered at the sight of all of you, but that turns into anger when she sees Namjoon, and then you. You set your bowl on the coffee table and leap up, shielding Namjoon from her glare.
“I didn’t believe Angela and Seokjin - I told them there was no way you’d do this. But you did. You’ve been messing around with a wolf, Y/n?!”
“Yeah, I have, and I’m not dead.”
“I can’t believe you kept this from me!”
“How could I tell you? You would’ve lost your shit and tried to forbid me. And I know you would’ve run and told Angela, who would’ve told the wolf force. But how could you know what’s going on - what’s truly going on - and not tell me or do anything about it?!”
“You don’t understand, Y/n. I’m your mother and it’s my job to protect you.”
“From what?! Because you were never protecting me from anything really except the truth that our entire town is fine with genocide! Do you know how evil that is?”
“That’s just the way it’s always been….” she frowns, her anger smoothing to something akin to sadness.
“That’s doesn’t make it right, and you know it! What the wolf force has done - what they’re doing now - is monstrous and disgusting.
“I…Y/n if you come back home, they’ll probably try and prosecute you. There’s no law for what you’ve done, but they’ll try and figure something out. I don’t know if Angela can do anything for you, or if she even will. She’s furious.”
“Then I’m not coming home. I refuse to be part of any community that is comfortable killing innocent people. And fuck Angela then! She always wanted to play the role of second mom but if this makes her cast me aside, so be it! And if you still support the wolf force, then I have nothing else to say to you.”
“I love Namjoon, and I’m not leaving him, nor am I letting him get hurt by anyone anymore. You can run and tell Angela and the Kims that if you want to.”
Unmistakable sadness and conflict are written on her face as she takes a step towards you, but you move away. She glances at your grandma, who shakes her head. You already know their relationship, even though they’ve worked to repair it, is still on thin ice when this topic comes up.
“I love you, Y/n.” Your mom says finally. You nod in response which seems to hit her hard as she gasps through what is very clearly a sob and turns on her heels to leave.
After she’s gone, no one speaks, and the only sound is the tv. You plop on the floor, shaking as you feel yet another crying spell coming. Namjoon wraps his arm around you, pulling you closer to him.
“Do you think she’ll really choose that town over me?” You choke out the question to your grandma, who has scooched over to hold your hand.
“I truly don’t know. Your mother is hard-headed and prideful - it’s why it took almost a year for her to speak to me again after I moved out. But, let’s hope she comes around to her senses sooner rather than later.” She kisses your hand before standing up to go to the bathroom.
After shedding tears over your mom, you finish eating and sleep on the floor in front of the couch to stay with Namjoon. You do that for the next few days until he’s feeling well enough to move to the guest bedroom to continue healing. You get a job at the grocery store working the cash register to start saving more to get you and Namjoon to the city, which is where you both decide you’ll be going.
It’s only a week after you and Namjoon fled when you’re coming back to your grandma’s after your shift, and you see your mom on her couch, crying into your grandma’s arms after a long-awaited, full reconciliation. When you come in, she bounds across the room, blubbering apologies about how foolish and wrong she was. She had let Angela and everyone around her convince her for her whole life that what was happening is normal and just the way things should operate, and she has been so wrong.
She wasn’t going to sacrifice her relationship with her daughter to keep accepting what’s happened, so broke up with Angela today. It was hard, and Angela was enraged that she was “turning her back” on her and the town; her behavior helped her make the decision easier. She kicked her out and has decided to find a new house close to your grandma. After more shared cries, you finally introduce her to Namjoon. It’s an awkward meeting, to say the least, but she makes an effort which you appreciate nonetheless.
As the weeks fly by, life almost feels as though it goes back to normal. Your mom sells your childhood home and moves everything in it into a smaller house around the corner from your grandma. You work as many shifts as you can, and your bank account seems more and more likely to be full enough for you and Namjoon to get a place in the city.
He seems to feel better as each new week hits and is eventually up and walking around your grandma’s house, and before you know it, he begins working at a cafe in town, doing his best to adapt to everyday life without having to hide who he is. Surprisingly, he acclimates rather quickly, falling into the swing of things.
Quicker than you would’ve expected, you and Namjoon have saved up enough to get your decent apartment in the city, and it’s been less than six months since your lives changed forever and almost a full year since you met Namjoon.
You’re packing the few things you’ve bought ahead of time into your mom’s car when you hear a ‘hi’ from behind you from a voice you had almost forgotten about.
Seokjin is standing behind you at the end of your grandma’s driveway, hands buried in his pockets. You blink at him a few times, but don’t make a move to walk towards him. For what it’s worth, even after everything, you did attempt to reach out to Seokjin, Chaerin, and Victoria.
Chaerin reached out first, texting you and berating you for the rumors she heard. When you confirmed them, she was furious and you both exchanged unkind words before you blocked her. Victoria on the other hand, blocked you before you even could text her.
You didn’t muster up the courage to reach out to Seokjin until a month after leaving, but you did try. You texted him, asking what was he even thinking about all of this. You never got a response, so you simply didn’t try again. There was no way he hadn’t read it or at least caught a glimpse that it was you, but it was clear he wouldn’t be responding, so you, in turn, wouldn’t be trying again. You were coming to terms with the fact that you’d never see him again and yet here he is.
“Are you leaving?” He gestures to the car, and you nod.
“Going into the city for good.”
“Oh.” He doesn’t say anything else so you sigh.
“Why are you here, Seokjin?”
“I…I don’t know actually.  I just felt like I needed to talk to you.”
“It took you five months to just show up and see me? Is your phone broken because I seem to remember texting you and getting nothing in response?” You cross your arms after you finish speaking, watching him sputter a few times.
“Look, I know that I ignored your text. I just wasn’t ready to speak to you. I didn’t know what to say to you.”
“You weren’t ready to speak to me? I’m the one that should come over there and beat your ass!”
“What?! What the hell did I do?!”
“Your family has slaughtered people, Seokjin! And you didn’t believe me when I told you!”
“How was I supposed to believe you, Red?! My family fucking created the wolf force, that shit runs in my lineage!”
“Because why the fuck would I lie to you about something like this?!” Your screaming match has your mom, your grandma, and Namjoon coming out of the house, all of them bristling at the sight of Seokjin. Namjoon is at your side in a flash, noticeably on guard and ready to protect you from your ex-best friend.
“Of course, you’re going with him.” Seokjin sneers.
“Yeah, I am. He actually believes me when I tell him astronomical, literal life-threatening things.
“Oh, come on, Red, what do you want me to say? I’m sorry I didn’t believe you, okay? I’m sorry I was too jealous to properly listen to you tell me my family is nothing but a bunch of murderers. Is that what you want?”
“It’s a start. Apology acknowledged, so what are you doing to stop it?” You deadpan, watching him huff and cross his arms.
“What do you mean? They’re all gone now since you’re fucking the last of them, right?”
You frown, anger coursing through you. “Are you serious right now? Is nothing going to happen? Is no one going to acknowledge the atrocities your family has committed? Namjoon deserves some sort of apology, some compensation by someone, something!” Namjoon touches your arm, noticing how your annoyance shifted to anger, and now to rage.
“You and I both know none of that is happening. He’s alive, so be happy. Just don’t come back to town with him because I won’t be able to guarantee that to stay true.” The urge to go over and smack Seokjin nearly overcomes you, but Namjoon’s hand wrapping around yours and gripping helps ground you and keeps you next to him.
“Goodbye Seokjin.” You take a deep breath, steadying your breath before squeezing Namjoon’s hand back. You turn without another word, asking your mom if there’s anything you’ve left behind. She says no, and Seokjin watches as you say your goodbyes to your grandma, telling her you’ll see her soon and thanking her for taking you and Namjoon in.
He’s still there when you get into the car, Sugar in your lap. You lock eyes as your mom reverses and drives past him, onwards on the short drive to your new home, leaving everything and nearly everyone from your previous home, behind.
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Life in the city isn’t as lonely as you were afraid it’d be. Other than Namjoon, you’ve got new friends now at your job as a receptionist at the local yoga studio and your classes at the community college have also given you new people to get to know and spend time with. You’re so busy with work and getting prepared to go back to vet school, that your new social and work lives do a good job of keeping you occupied while you cope with the loss of your past life.
Chaerin, Victoria, and the rest of your friends from home have seemed to easily forget you exist, which you have been able to mostly fare with. Seokjin has only attempted to reach out once, trying in a last-ditch effort to convince you to come back home. After you refuse once again, asking him, in turn, to understand why you’ve left, he still seems to believe what his family has done is somehow absolved. While it’s the hardest for you to settle with, you decide once and for all that your relationship is done.
Namjoon is so much more carefree after living a life where it’s safe for him to exist outside. His new job at the city plant nursery isn’t glamorous, but it lets him be around greenery and meet new people, which is more than he’s ever been able to do. Living - truly living - is much different than quickly running errands every few weeks, fearing for his life every time.
Tonight, Namjoon is still as newly optimistic as ever as he excitedly tells you that his boss may let him lead a bonsai clipping class soon, practically vibrating in his seat at the thought.
When you’re both finished eating dinner and he’s finished his story, he happily helps you clean up the table, Sugar begging for scraps at your feet the whole time.
“I still can’t believe it sometimes you know? Like, I’m out of the forest, I have friends, I’m building a life, and it’s all happening with the love of my life.”
“You’ve basically gone and got your happily ever after.” You giggle at your joke.
“Not yet. My real happily ever after will be after you say yes to being my mate for the rest of our lives.”
You jolt at the implication, dropping the plate in your hand into the sink. You turn to look at Namjoon, standing behind you holding a gold ring with a single diamond in it.
“Namjoon -”
“This isn’t the fanciest ring ever, but I promise I’ll get you a much better one once I can afford it. I’ll get you the better version of everything, so everything for you is perfect, just like you.
It’s unexpected, a question you certainly didn’t see coming even in your dreams, but you have no hesitation in your heart. You practically leap into Namjoon’s arms, ‘yes’s’ tumbling from your mouth like a team chant.
“I love you so much,” you cry, peppering his jaw and neck in kisses.
“I love you too, Y/n. Thank you for truly giving me my happily ever after.” Namjoon says, his own eyes beginning to prick with tears. For both of you, a new chapter is only beginning as your old one, comes to an end.
408 notes · View notes
joheunsaram · a month ago
squeeze (myg)
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Part of my Ask Me Anything drabble series
word count- 585
pairing- yoongi x reader
rating- R
genre- smut, fluff
warnings- choking, spit play, penetrative sex, cuddles
a.n- I saw this hair live and I fucking died. HE HAD THE AUDACITY TO WINK IN MY DIRECTION AFTER BITING HIS LIP. Imma combust. Anyways enjoy the thirst. more drabbles to come soon.
As always feedback appreciated, a reblog and a like goes a far way. Send me an ask! 💌
“Tell me what you want, pretty baby,” Yoongi taunted as he stared down at you, eyes narrowed and a smirk across his face. He was panting, ginger hair matted across his forehead as sweat dripped down his temples, occasionally falling on you. He looked absolutely feral, but that was nothing compared to you.
Nails digging into Yoongi’s ribs, you were barely holding on to reality. Mouth agape, face flushed, and body quaking, all you could see, feel and hear was Yoongi. *Yoongi. Yoongi. Yoongi.
The tendons in his forearm flexed as he tightened the grip around your neck, two fingers and thumb pressing at the pressure points on either side of your throat, restricting the blood flow deliciously, making you keen. You could feel his weight on top of you even when he tried to keep it mostly on the forearm placed beside your head, hand buried in your hair, pulling and stinging your scalp in an effort to ensure you didn’t hit the headboard -- the precaution necessary because his hips were unrelenting, thrusting at a pace unfathomable, turning you boneless.
“Please,” you rasped, clawing at his back, leaving stark red marks that glistened against the porcelain. The plea had him snickering, using your hair to arch your neck so you had to look up to him through hooded eyes, desperate and needy, just the way he liked.
“Ask me like a big girl. Use your words,” he goaded, increasing his pace, his pelvis continuing to grind against your clit and sending shockwaves through you. You knew you couldn’t hold on for long so you asked for the one thing that would push over the edge.
“Spit in my mouth,” you whined, mouth open and tongue out immediately after, and Yoongi’s face lit up at your request, a large grin displaying his gums and his glee.
“Anything for my baby,” he replied, tightening his hold on your neck just a little more to have you see stars and letting a glob of spit fall into your mouth. The familiar taste made you flush deeper, warmth flowing through you as you demanded more and Yoongi gladly acquiesced. It was thrilling, unbelievably tantalizing, and paired with his hard thrusts, it threw you headfirst into your orgasm, waves of pleasure crashing through you until you were whimpering in his hold.
He wasn’t far behind, the pulsating of your walls around him making him meet his end as well, as he collapsed onto you, pressing you into the mattress, leaving lingering kisses on your cheeks and jaw and neck.
“I love you,” you confessed quietly, laying limp under him as he gazed at you with incredulity.
It was silent, the kind of silence that blankets you in its warmth, comforting and content. Yoongi smiled at you, fingers stroking your scalp before they were searching for yours and he was turning on his side.
And with four tight squeezes of your hands in reply, he pulled you closer, kissing you gently.
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darlinbangtan · 5 months ago
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hi pretty boy (@vlive)
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taehyungq · 2 days ago
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hobeemin · 2 months ago
of bane & roses
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genre: smut, pwp, romance, supernatural au, hybrid au
pairing: werewolf!jeon jungkook x nurse!(f) oc
rating: 18+
warning(s): swearing, violence, biting, scratching, fighting, blood, scars, injuries, pining, knotting, praise kink, scenting, masturbation, clit spanking, pussy/cock worship, begging, exhibitionism, multiple orgasms, dirty talk, unprotected sex, penetrative sex
word count: 7.2k
credits: a HUGE thank you to @joyfulhopelox​! Thank you Maria for looking this over and giving me great feedback 💜💜💜
resources for banner found here ~ 1, 2, 3
Pleasure Hollows⁂ Hosted by: Professor Kat through @bangtansorciere
⤐ AU Type: coven (roommates to lovers au)
⤐ Themes: werewolves/hybrids, mutual pining
⤐ Kinks: knotting, praise kink, scenting, masturbation, clit spanking, pussy/cock worship, begging, exhibitionism 
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“Damn it!”
Big doe-like eyes shot her a pouty look but were ignored as she busied herself blotting the disinfectant on the laceration on his arm. He was covered in cuts and bruises, but at first glance, this happened to be the worst of it.
“You’re lucky this wasn’t any deeper otherwise you would have needed stitches,” she scolded.
He winced, looking away, trying to make light of the situation. “It’s not that bad.”
“Oh really?” She shot him a look that wiped the smirk off his face. “Do we need to go over the other injuries you’ve sustained?”
“No,” he muttered, and his cheeks reddened. 
“That’s what I thought.”
She swiped some antibacterial ointment over the wound, covered it with gauze, and wrapped it with adhesive tape. “Alright, I’m done.”
A smile spread on his face. “Thanks, Devon.”
“You’re welcome, Jungkook, yet again,” she answered flatly.
He frowned, rubbing the back of his head. “Ouch. Harsh.”
Devon snorted as she put her supplies back in the medical bag. “You need it, Kook. How many times have I patched you up with no explanation?”
“I told you I–”
“Yeah yeah. I’m over the excuses,” she interrupted, rising from her seat. She played with the necklace around her neck to distract herself. Guilt immediately took over as she glanced back at him. Even though he towered over her by at least six inches, he seemed so small right now. She huffed and turned to face him, noticing the bruise near his temple. She brushed back his bangs assessing it.
“Does it hurt?”
“Not really,” he answered.
Devon clicked her tongue. She pressed around the bruise until he made what sounded like a whine. “You could have a concussion.”
He pushed her hand away as he curled up on the couch. “I’m fine. Nothing that some sleep won’t cure.”
Devon narrowed her eyes as he started to yawn. She rolled her eyes and stormed off to her room.
“Fine. See if I care,” she grumbled, slamming the door behind her. 
This was not the way she wanted to end the evening. It seemed like no matter what, Jungkook caused her more stress. She was already dealing with enough at the hospital. Still annoyed, she took off her scrubs and walked into the adjoining bathroom. As Devon stepped into the shower, her mind wandered back to her problematic roommate. 
He’s given her nothing but stress, since day one.
“I can’t believe the night we had! What is it with full moons? All the crazies come out.”
Devon glanced at her co-worker, adjusting her bag as they walked out of the hospital. She waved to the security guard as they headed to the parking lot. “Hobi, it wasn’t that bad.”
He let out a short laugh shaking his head. “Did we work the same shift? I’m pretty sure those patients from that fire at that frat house say otherwise.”
Devon sighed as she fished her keys out. “Good point. It got to a certain moment when everything meshed for me.”
“Lucky you,” Hobi muttered as they walked on. They reached her car, and he leaned against her hood, yawning with a stretch. “I plan to pass out for the next few days. After doing four back-to-back 12s, I’m dead.”
Devon chuckled. “Lucky you, I got one more shift on Saturday. I shouldn’t have switched with Jimin.”
Hobi snorted, giving her a poke. “Your fault. But look at it this way, at least he stopped hitting on you–”
Devon held her hand out, looking into the darkness. She frowned, stepping forward. “You hear that, Hobi?”
A groan cut into the darkness, and he pointed in the direction. “I think it’s coming from over there.”
They ran over, listening for any more sounds to pinpoint the location. Devon looked around the cars until she saw a hand on the ground. “Hoseok! Over here!”
He ran over to see her kneeling by a man leaning on the fence. Devon shook his leg gently. “Sir? Sir, are you okay? Do you need any help?”
Hobi glanced over the injured man. “He looks pretty beat up, Devon.”
She could see the numerous cuts and bruises littered all over his face and hands—barefoot and torn clothing.
“You think it was a mugging?”
“Maybe,” she answered. She noticed him holding his side. He was still out of it, breathing erratically. She lifted his jacket and her eyes widened.
“Oh shit.”
She pointed at his side. Blood seeped from deep gashes along his chest. “Fuck. We need to get him to the hospital.”
“N-No hospitals.”
They jumped as the male finally spoke. It was barely above a whisper but his voice rang clear. To their surprise, he tried to stand only for Hoseok to push him back down. “Bad idea, man. You’re seriously injured. We can’t have you moving around on your own. We need to get you checked out and call the cops–”
“No!” His eyes opened as he wiggled out from under Hoseok’s hand. “No!”
Devon’s lips pursed as she poked the man in the arm. “We’re trying to help you! We’re both nurses at that hospital.”
He shook his head again. “No!” He winced as a surge of pain went through him and fell back against the fence post. 
She clicked her tongue in annoyance. “Your ribs could be broken. Let us help you.”
Hobi sighed as he made eye contact with her. “We can’t force anyone for medical health.”
“I-I know,” she bit her bottom lip. An idea popped into her head. She had a feeling Hobi would hate, but it was worth a shot. “How about I take him home?”
“Have you lost your mind?!”
Yep. Hobi hated the idea.
Devon gave him her infamous puppy dog eyes as Hobi tried to fight it off. The next thing he knew, he was helping her carry the man to her car. Mumbling angrily, he pushed him into the backseat with a grunt. “You owe me bigtime, Devon.”
“I have a feeling you’re not gonna let me live this down.”
“Ya think?”
She exhaled and poked her head into the backseat. The man’s breathing was still irregular, but his eyes were open. “I’m taking you back to my place to fix you up. Can you tell me your name?”
He lifted his head as he shifted his position. “J-Jeon Jungkook.”
Devon smiled for the first time that night. “Nice to meet you, Jeon Jungkook. I’m Devon Lewis.”
After that fateful day, Jungkook would seek out Devon whenever he had any injuries. True to her word, she never reported anything to the hospital or the authorities. He was an MMA fighter, insisting they were rough fights. As repayment, he would help do odd jobs around her apartment, until he eventually moved in. He was quiet, minus those random nights of his tournaments, and that suited her just fine.
She grumbled to herself, putting on a long nightshirt and her bonnet, and climbed into bed after the well-deserved shower. Nothing but stress. He was going to be the death of her. She shook her head in disappointment and snuggled into her covers.
“Fucking Jeon Jungkook.”
The smell of bacon and eggs invaded her nostrils and roused herself awake. Rubbing her eyes, she slipped out of bed putting on her slippers and walked into the living room. To her surprise, Jungkook was in the kitchen...cooking.
He hummed to himself as he flipped the bacon in the skillet. He turned to put it on the plate when he saw her standing by the counter. Jungkook grinned, giving her his famous bunny smile.
“Morning, Dee!”
She frowned, crossing her arms over her chest. “You seem chipper today.”
He nodded with a hum as he fixed her a plate and slid it across the counter towards her. “I feel great. Thanks again.”
She grunted and sank into the chair, grabbing a fork and stabbing at the eggs. He joined her moments later, setting a large mug of coffee down near her. He winked before he started shoveling food into his mouth. Devon’s lips thinned as she stared at the food on her plate. With a huff, she threw her fork down.
“Damn it, Jungkook!”
He dropped his fork in surprise. “What’s wrong?”
She rounded on him, glaring. “How can you be so blasé about everything?! You almost died last night!”
His shoulders dropped as he looked down at his hand, studying the dark lines etched into his skin. “Why are you making it a big deal? I’m fine. See–” he pointed to the bruise that was on his head. It was faded. Yet again, the notion of his injuries healing so fast left Devon stumped.
“I told you I got strong antibodies. I heal fast. Always have.”
“I don't want anything to happen to you,” she muttered.
Jungkook reached over and squeezed her hand. “I promise I’m alright.” He scooted closer and nuzzled against her hair making her roll her eyes. “You’re my guardian angel Devon – always have been.”
That still didn’t seem to calm her mood. Jungkook continued to eat in silence, oblivious to the looks Devon shot him. She worried about him more than she let on. These MMA fights were getting out of hand. 
What if he comes back with serious injuries and I can’t help him?
She shook the feeling away, deciding she’d at least eat the breakfast he made. A rare occurrence indeed. Maybe he was trying to get on her good side. It was working. She was pretty shocked to see how well he did with cooking. Didn’t taste bad at all. Jungkook stretched his limbs and patted his stomach.
“Ah, I’m full.”
Devon’s eye zoomed down while Jungkook stretched. His shirt lifted, showing off the well-toned muscle definition.
She looked away as the heat bloomed from her cheeks. “Heading out?”
“Yeah, gonna go to the gym for a bit.”
“I’ll clean up. Go on and do your workout.”
He picked his plate, set it in the sink, and ran over to Devon, engulfing her in his arms. He kissed her forehead with a smile. “You’re the best, Dee. I’ll see you later!”
Devon didn’t have time to say anything as Jungkook grabbed his bag and ran out the door. Once she heard it close shut, she got up from her seat and started to clean up the kitchen. 
As she washed one o` the bowls, her mind wandered to Jungkook. When did he become so good-looking? She frowned, rinsing out the bowl under the hot water. So inappropriate. He was her roommate. Let alone the fact that she was older than him.
It’s only by three years.
Not helping.
Muttering to herself, she scrubbed at the pan angrily. The last thing Devon needed was a distraction. There were much more important things going on in her life than daydreaming about Jungkook.
But those muscles…
She threw the sponge down, breathing hard. Why these thoughts all of a sudden? She’s never looked at him in that way before. He was her adorable, sometimes aggravating roommate.
Who also came home with life-threatening injuries.
Okay. Good point. 
Devon distracted herself with cleaning the rest of the kitchen. Once she finished, she went into her room and freshened up. Shaking her curls from under her bonnet, Devon put on a tank top and yoga shorts. She went back into the living room and plopped down on the couch. Her shift didn’t start until eleven in the evening, so she occupied her time paying bills and getting some reading done.
A few hours later, Jungkook walked in, tossing his bag near the door, as he kicked off his shoes. He noticed Devon fast asleep on the couch, laptop open, and a book covering her face. He smiled fondly and tip-toed over. 
“Dee? Dee?”
When she didn’t respond, Jungkook walked over to the throw blanket draped over one of the armchairs and brought it over. He covered her with care and made his way to his bedroom, being mindful not to disturb her. Closing the door to his room, he stretched, looking in the mirror. Gazing at his reflection, he frowned.
“Yeah. I need to shower.”
The sweat from his workout made his shirt stick to his body and was becoming uncomfortable. Tossing the shirt towards the hamper against the wall, he ran his fingers over the numerous scars etched over his chest and torso. He frowned, feeling the raised skin. Any of these could have been fatal if it hadn’t been for Devon.
He closed his eyes, dropping his head.
“Just one more night, and it’s over.”
His phone rang, shaking him from his thoughts. Glancing at the number on the screen darkened his mood. With a scowl, he answered with a growl.
“How rude. I thought you would be happy to hear from me.”
“You thought wrong. What do you want?”
“You’re up tonight.”
Jungkook’s brows knitted in frustration. “Why? My last fight finished. I’m done.”
“I say when you’re done. I expect you to be at the usual place before then.”
“This wasn’t part of our agreement,” he protested.
“Ah, young pup, that’s where you’re wrong. I make the rules; you follow them. Either show up, or things get messy.”
“You can’t do this!”
“I can, and I will. Besides, you don’t want anything to happen to that little nurse, do you?”
Jungkook’s face paled. How had they found out about Devon? His hand trembled, holding his phone. “Keep her out of this.”
“Then do as you’re told. See you tonight.”
The line went dead. Jungkook sank to his bed, dropping his phone as he fell back onto the pillows. What could he do? Worry crossed his face. He didn’t have much of a choice when it came down to it. He’d do anything to keep Devon safe. The guilt already ate at him for all the times he came home hurt and needed her help. Sometimes he felt like he was using her. 
But you care about her.
He shook the thoughts aside.
No, that would be bad. Getting involved with her would only complicate things. Friends only. He sighed and began to prepare for the night ahead.
Devon didn’t wake until the alarm on her phone went off. She jumped off the couch with a start as the book slid off her face. Looking around in a panic, she finally calmed once she saw the time. With a deep breath, she got up, noticing the blanket as well. She raised her brow, looking around.
“Jungkook, you home?”
His door was closed, and she shrugged, going back to her room to get ready for work. She found her scrubs and changed quickly. Just as she walked out of her room, Jungkook exited his room, carrying his duffel bag. He jumped in surprise, seeing her there.
“D-Devon! What are you doing here?”
She set her bag on the couch, giving him a strange look. “I live here, Kook.”
He chuckled as he bounced on his heels nervously. “Yeah. I know that, but I thought you left for work.”
“Um, dude, you know I get coffee with Hobi before our shift. He’s picking me up today.”
“Oh, okay.”
“Where you headed? I thought you went to work out already.” Frowning, she pointed to his bag and state of dress.
Jungkook tugged on his hair, placing it behind his ears. “Got a match.”
Genuine disappointment etched on her face. “You didn’t tell me you had a match. I would have come!”
“Eh, it was last minute,” he muttered, glancing down at his watch.
Devon felt a slight pang of hurt hit her stomach just as the sensor at the door chimed, signaling that someone was at the front door. Her phone went off at the same time, showing a text from Hoseok. She grabbed her bag and headed towards the door. She turned toward Jungkook as he paced in the living room.
“Well, I hope you win.”
“Uh-huh,” he said, distracted in his thoughts.
Jungkook didn’t hear the door close as Devon left. He stared at his phone with intense concentration. Soon he’d get a message with the address. The phone vibrated on the table. With shaky hands, he pressed the button to open up the text.
: Warehouse District, meat packing building :
Devon sat down in the coffee shop, lost in thought. Hoseok walked over to their table, holding both their drinks. He waved his hand in front of her face with a pout.
“Hello? Earth to Dee. Your latte’s gonna get cold.”
She blinked a few times and smiled. “Sorry, Hobi.”
“You alright? You seemed a little down when you got in my car,” he replied.
She sighed deeply, taking a sip of her drink. “I don’t know. Jungkook is being weird.”
“More than usual?”
“Uh-huh. Just felt off. I don’t know how to explain it...he seemed unnerved.”
“That doesn’t sound like him,” Hoseok commented. “Maybe he’s just nervous about the match. He’ll be back to his normal self in no time.”
They chatted some more; Hoseok mostly complained about the schedule they had and their cranky boss. Devon listened and laughed when needed, but she still couldn’t shake the anxious feeling she had about Jungkook. As they walked out to his car, something caught her eye. She saw Jungkook standing on the corner across the street. 
I recognize that face anywhere.
As soon as she tried to call out to him, a van pulled up next to him, and he jumped in. “Um, Hosoek.”
“Go on without me. I just remembered something.”
His lips turned downward. “But we start our shift in half an hour.”
“Cover for me, please,” she asked with a pout and puppy dog eyes.
“Damn it. Alright, but you owe big time.”
“You’re the best,” she ran off with a wave. Her eyes darted down the street. The van had stopped at a traffic light, and she hailed down a cab. 
“Where to?” the driver inquired.
“See that van with the stickers on the bumper?”
“Follow it.”
“Lady, I don’t follow cars, just addresses,” he argued.
“I’ll give you $100 if you do it.”
The silence seemed like a good indication that he agreed. Sure enough, he turned off the taximeter, put the gear shift in drive, and took off after the van. Devon watched as the city setting changed from midtown to industrial. Her brows furrowed once she noticed they headed to the warehouse district. Most of the buildings were abandoned as businesses lost money throughout the years—forgotten ventures left this part of the city an industrial wasteland.
They came across the van parked in front of a dilapidated meatpacking plant. The cab stopped a few feet away.
“Here we are.”
Devon held her end of the bargain, fishing out a hundred-dollar bill, she handed it to him. “Thanks again,” she said, getting out of the car. The driver waved her off as he drove away, leaving her alone in the quiet of the street. She rubbed her arms as the chill caught up with her. 
“Maybe I should have worn a warmer jacket,” she muttered to herself, staring at the building. It was now or never.
Gathering some courage, she crossed the street, searching for an entrance. Voices grew louder, and she hid behind the van. Two large men walked out of a side door and leaned on the side of the building all the while one lit up a cigarette.
“Ready for the fight?”
“Always. Got some decent competition tonight.”
“I’ll say. Even that young pup is here.”
One of them smirked with a shake of his head. “He doesn’t know what to expect.”
“He better hope Cash doesn’t murder him tonight.”
The man closest to Devon’s hiding spot threw the cigarette butt down, and the two men walked back into the building. She ran out once the coast was clear and headed to the door. Not wanting to be discovered, she saw a broken window above the dumpster. She used the leverage of a box to jump up on it. Covering her hands from the glass, Devon hoisted herself through the window. Luckily it wasn’t a far drop. Looking around, the hanging fluorescent lights flickered, casting shadows. Devon strained her ears, listening to any indication of people. Being mindful of her steps, she tip-toed towards the middle of the building. As she got closer to the central part of the building, the shouts grew louder. She covered her mouth and nose as a stench smacked her across the face.
I know that smell anywhere!
The metallic scent of blood filled the air, mixed with body odor. There was another smell as well, almost similar to a wet dog. Devon frowned as she got closer. Wanting a better look, she noticed a staircase that led up to the rafters. Devon took the steps slowly, worried the rusty metal would give away her presence. Fortunately for her, the railing was tall enough to hide behind but had openings to see out onto the factory floor. Her eyes widened at the sight before her. A chain-linked dome was constructed in the middle of the floor. Under it, was a circular ring. Her stomach churned at the dried blood smeared on the mat. At least fifty men surrounded the dome, screaming and shaking the chains. A man entered the ring covered in tattoos and wearing leather.
“That last match was a close one! I hope you dogs are still bloodthirsty for more.”
The men cheered all around as the man grinned, a glint of madness behind his eyes. “Next up, we have our reigning champ, Cash!”
The crowd went wild as a large, muscular man stepped into the ring. His head was shaved with an intricate design etched into the skin. He was shirtless and wore a pair of black basketball shorts. The announcer pointed to the opposite side with a sneer.
“Next up, our contender for the evening, the golden pup himself, Jeon Jungkook!”
Devon’s eyes widened like saucers as her mouth dropped. A combination of cheers and jeers rang out as the young man entered. Jungkook’s eyes darted around before removing his shirt and coming to the middle of the ring.
The announcer sneered at the two fighters. “Remember, there are no rules. The bloodier, the better. Make sure to not kill each other too early in the fight.”
An attendant locked the cage, and a bell rang in the distance signalling the start of the fight. Jungkook and Cash paced the ring, eyeing each other down. Cash faked out, trying to unnerve Jungkook, but he held his ground. The announcer stepped out of the ring and gave the nod.
“You better hope for a quick death, pup.”
Jungkook snarled as his eyes narrowed. He bared his teeth at his opponent. “We’ll see about that.”
The two men ran at each other head-on. As Jungkook ran forward to swing a left punch, Cash grabbed his fist and twisted it around. The bone cracked instantly, and Jungkook’s screams echoed through the arena. The sound almost deafened her ears. She watched in horror as Jungkook’s arm bent at a weird angle. He whimpered, jumping back against the chains. Staring hard at Cash, Jungkook grabbed ahold of the limb and straightened it out. Devon’s jaw dropped to the ground.
What the fuck.
Wanting to return the favor, Jungkook attacked Cash with a barrage of punches, one slamming into his kidneys. The older male gasped as he doubled over in pain, the wind knocked out of him. He noticed blood coating his hand, and he looked up at the younger male. Jungkook smirked, raising his hand to show claws.
The announcer chuckled into the microphone. “Well, things are starting to heat up, but why don’t we take it up a notch.”
The crowd around stopped shaking the chains and threw their heads up, letting out a resounding howl. Devon covered her ears as to her horror; something unexpected began to happen. Jungkook and Cash fell to the floor, shaking. Jungkook tried to get to his feet, but his legs gave out. He let out a scream as his body began to twist and bend in obtuse angles. Before her eyes, pitch-black fur sprouted all over his body. His limbs and head contorted as they shifted into something only found in nightmares. The sound of bones breaking and reconnecting rang out in the building. 
Once it was over, two giant wolves stood on their hind legs: one black, another auburn.
“Oh my–”
The announcer grinned looking at the two wolves. “Jungkook–” the black wolf snorted. “Cash–” the auburn-colored wolf barked out, “Let the Blood match begin!”
The wolves growled, baring their fangs at one another. Jungkook was slightly taller than Cash but leaner.  Cash snapped his jaws at Jungkook, trying to catch him off guard. Jungkook avoided the bite by digging his claws into his thigh. The wolf howled in pain, trying to shake him off. Jungkook kicked his legs from underneath him and grabbed Cash by the throat. Cash struggled in his grasp, whining as the pressure began to suffocate him. The crowd grew restless, angry that Jungkook could get the upper hand. 
The announcer met Jungkook’s eyes and gave him a wink. Jungkook blinked in understanding and bit down on Cash’s throat crushing his windpipe. The wolf instantly stopped moving. Jungkook opened his jaws, letting the dead wolf fall to the ground with a thud. 
The crowd roared as the ring shook with bloodthirsty screams. The announcer ran in, raising his arm in the air. Slowly Jungkook transformed back into his human form, cuts, and bruises littering his body. His hair damp from the sweat, stuck to his neck and forehead.
“We have a new champion! Jeon Jungkook!”
He held his side and exited the ring going off to the locker room.
Devon scrambled up from her hiding place, trying to get away. What had she just seen? In her frenzy, the chain on her necklace broke and dropped from her spot and landed just as Jungkook walked by. His eyes zoomed in on the faint white gold. He recognized that necklace anywhere.
Fear crossed his face as he looked around. She couldn’t have been here. Taking off, he ran out of the building. Honing his senses, he smelled the faint notes of her perfume and followed her in that direction. It didn’t take long to catch up with her as she headed towards a park nearby.
She froze in her tracks at the sound of her name. Everything screamed for her to run away, but the bass in his voice made her stop. Jungkook jogged up to her, breathing hard.
“What are you doing here?”
Something in her snapped. Maybe it was the stress from her job or Jungkook always coming home injured, but Devon had had enough. She rounded on him as her fists shook. 
“That’s the least of your worries! What the fuck, Jungkook?! I-I don’t even know where to begin. I mean–” a short laugh stopped her words as her body shook– “a werewolf. A fucking werewolf! I-I just...this is...I,” she babbled, sinking to a bench staring off into the distance. 
He watched her reaction, waiting for her to quieten down, and he took that chance to speak. “I only kept it from you to protect you. These people are dangerous.” 
As the adrenaline began to wear off, Jungkook’s face filled with exhaustion. He slumped to the ground. “I was giving up that life. My last fight–or so I thought–was finished the other night. I couldn’t turn it down because–” he faltered off, looking away. 
Devon raised her head to look at him. “Because what?”
His eyes welled with tears as he looked at her. “They threatened to hurt you, Dee.” He exhaled loudly, staring up at the sky. “I care about you too much to not do anything. You mean so much to me that I fought tonight to keep you safe.”
Even if she was furious with him, his confession made her heart flutter. “Kook–”
“You know the reason no one caught on to you being there?”
She shook her head no.
“You smell like me,” he answered.
She raised her brow with a frown. “What do you mean?”
Jungkook coughed slightly as his cheeks dusted with pink. “Remember all those times we’d watch movies, and I cuddled up to you?”
Did she want to know where this is going? “Uh-huh.”
Jungkook’s face looked like it would combust. “I marked you...with my scent. Any wolf that comes across you won’t try anything because you’re already...claimed.”
“Claimed? Claimed?! Jeon Jungkook, have you lost your ever-loving mind? I am not a piece of meat that you can keep for yourself!”
He winced away from Devon, whining and curling into a ball. “Not literally! It was for your safety,” he pouted, looking up at her. “I’d be beside myself if something were to happen to you.”
Jungkook rose to his knees, all but crawling over to her on the bench. He took her hands gingerly into his. 
“I don’t know where we go from here, but I’m sorry from the bottom of my heart for keeping this from you, but you have to understand—if you were in my position, would you want me to know?”
Good point.
Devon sighed as the comfort from his hands relaxed her nerves. “Kook, this is a lot to take in.”
“I know. I understand if you need some space,” he replied. His head dropped, resting on her knee. Subconsciously, Devon raked her fingers through his hair. 
This wasn’t so bad, right? 
My roommate is a fucking werewolf.
Jungkook vibrated with a sound as he suddenly pulled away from Devon. She gave him a curious stare. “What’s wrong?”
Jungkook felt the heat rise in his face as his pupils dilated. He swallowed loudly and stood up. “I-I should get you home.”
Devon frowned but remained seated. “Seriously, Jungkook, what’s going on?”
He let out a whine as his eyes darted around. “I-I can’t tell you.”
“Jungkook,” her voice firm, “No more secrets.”
His cheeks puffed, feeling the embarrassment grow on his face. He began to pace. “Fine! You’re in heat.”
Devon’s mouth dropped open as her eyes rounded. Jungkook ran his hands through his hair, avoiding eye contact. “It’s becoming unbearable. I have to get you away from me.”
She bit down on her lip, staring at her hands in her lap. “But what if I don’t want that?”
He stopped pacing and gawked at her. “What?”
Devon rose from her seat and walked up to him. Her eyes glinted with mischief. He was still only wearing a pair of torn jeans. Cuts and bruises were healing at an accelerated rate. Jungkook froze as Devon’s hands slid across his abs, outlining them with her fingers. 
“Do I have to spell it out for you? Kookie–” she nuzzled against him, standing on her tip-toes, so her lips ghosted his earlobe, “I want you.”
Jungkook suppressed a moan. He squeezed his eyes shut, trying to keep himself calm, but he was losing whatever restraint he had. He was a wolf, after all, and with her standing there wanting him, he couldn’t resist anymore. Opening his eyes, he looked down at her as his eyes glowed faintly in the dark.
“Do you know what you’re asking? Are you sure?”
She nodded, making him frown slightly. “Words, Dee. Yes or no.”
“Yes,” the resolve in her voice. “I want this; I want you.”
Suddenly, Jungkook gripped the back of her head and crashed his lips to hers. Devon, caught by surprise, didn't know what to do with her hands. They hung at her side as Jungkook guided her against a tree. Her back bumped against the trunk as he caged her in. His tongue pleaded for entrance, and she obliged, opening her mouth. He sought the delicate muscle, lightly caressing it with his tongue. 
Devon, her senses awakened, placed her hands on his shoulders and played with the long strands that laid on his neck. She moaned into the kiss, begging for more. Jungkook felt the air in his lungs struggle, and he broke the kiss, resting his forehead on top of her head. Catching his breath, he felt buzzed as her fingers massaged his skin.
With a grin, he lifted her chin, placing soft kisses every few moments. “I could kiss you forever,” he murmured.
“That makes two of us,” she responded with a giggle.
He closed his eyes with a hiss. “You smell intoxicating.” His eyes opened again as they glowed faintly. His nostrils flared as hunger took over him. “Wanna ravage you.”
“What are you waiting for?” she taunted playfully. Her fingers danced down his chest, making him groan with want. She tugged on the band of jeans after feeling his length hardened against her thigh. Only one thought crossed her mind. How was she going to take it all? She palmed him over his jeans, and much to her astonishment, he grew even harder. Jungkook clenched his jaw, trying to keep in control. Devon removed her hand and touched the button on his jeans.
“May I?”
He bit down on his lip, staring at her with equal parts lust and devotion. “It’s all yours.”
His words alone made her thighs clench together. With the same amount of fervor, Devon sank to her knees, unbuttoning his pants. His cock sprung out, slapping against his stomach. Devon was sadly mistaken if she thought it was an adequate size from just feeling it in his jeans. This man was a work of art. She’d need both hands to handle him. It was mesmerising, the head red and swollen from arousal. Beads of precum coating his stomach by now. The veins along his length throbbed as his cock twitched just from her looking at him. Devon reached out and cupped his balls, heavy and full. Jungkook braced his hands against the tree breathing through his nose. Devin ran her hands up and down his length, stroking him slowly. She brought her lips up to the head and kissed it gently. 
The sounds he made only excited her more. She ran her tongue along the tip, coating her tongue in his essence.
“Tastes good,” she cooed.
Jungkook reached down and caressed her cheek with the back of his hand. “I won’t last long if you keep doing that,” he warned.
Devon bit down her lower lip, still stroking him off. “Oh? How can I not appreciate what you have? It’s the most beautiful cock I’ve ever laid eyes on.” 
Jungkook eyed her with a smirk. “Show me how you want to appreciate my cock.”
Devon consumed him with ease like a woman starved, tongue wrapping around the length as she relaxed her mouth to take him all in. Once his tip hit the back of her throat, she paused, hollowing out her cheeks. In tandem with sucking him off, her hands pumped the remaining length. 
Jungkook’s knees almost buckled from the sensation of her mouth and tongue. He whined, watching her move. “S-So warm and wet,” he whispered languidly. 
The slurping sounds rang out in the night as Devon tried her best to deep throat him. Jungkook cooed praises while stroking her cheek. When Devon’s eyes met his, he almost came right then and there. Tapping her cheek, she stopped bobbing her head and slowly came off his cock with a soft pop. Saliva and precum coated her lips and his cock. He picked her up off the ground, cupping her chin, and kissed her with unbridled passion. The kiss nearly knocked her off her feet. He sucked at her bottom lip sensually, still turned on by her actions. 
“My turn,” he teased. 
As much as he wanted to rip her scrubs off, they were out in the open. Being as gentle as possible, Jungkook tugged them down, drooling at the smell permeating from her. He noticed the wet patch on her underwear and licked his lips, his nose bumping against her pubic bone, trying to hold onto his restraint. He swallowed thickly, meeting her gaze.
“Baby, can I have a taste?”
She combed her fingers through his hair, nodding. “Yes, Jungkook. Please.”
His tongue licked a thick strip on her underwear, causing her to jolt. Gasping, she gripped his hair, anchoring herself in place. With his teeth, he tugged down her underwear past her knees. He smirked, enjoying the view.
“So lovely. And all for me.”
He massaged her inner thighs, placing soft kisses along her skin, making his way up to her pussy lips. His finger stroked her slit gauging her reaction. Devon hissed as her hips bucked, making a chuckle escape past his lips.
“Already wet and needy for me, hmm?”
He spread her lips apart, eyeing her clit. He flicked it gently, followed by a smack. Devon bucked her hips with a gasp. Jungkook gave a tentative lick collecting her arousal on his tongue, and let out a wanton moan, covering her clit with his mouth. Devon threw her head back, grinding against his mouth. He let go of her clit, letting his tongue travel down to her entrance. He moaned against her, enjoying the feast before his eyes.
“F-Fuck Kook….like that….don’t stop,” she pleaded breathlessly. 
As her legs trembled from standing, Jungkook paused, looking up at her. He couldn’t get enough of her. He smiled again as he hoisted her legs up and propped them on his shoulders. 
His strength alone was turning her on. Devon gripped his hair as she cried out into the darkness. The spring coiled tight in her abdomen. She was close. 
“K-Kook, I’m gonna....gonna.”
“Baby cum for me, let me taste it all,” he purred.
She rutted against his mouth as her hips jerked. Jungkook held her tight just as she stopped mid-scream. Waves of pleasure crashed over her as the coil finally released. Devon’s chest rose as she came down from her high. Pupils dilated, she tried to catch her breath. Jungkook happily lapped up her juices, humming with content. Once he cleaned her up, he gazed up at her intently.
“But I’m still hungry.”  
A shiver ran down her spine. He noticed the way her pussy lips throbbed just from his words. Smirking, he removed her legs from around his neck and stood up from his position. He wrapped her legs around his waist, pressing close to her. Devon held on to his shoulders, returning the smile as he nuzzled against her, kissing her neck.
“I need you now, baby.”
“S-Still sensitive,” she whispered.
Jungkook kissed her forehead gently, with a hum of understanding. “Gonna have to fix that eventually.”
She hit his arm playfully with a grin. “Oh? So there’s gonna be a next time?”
“Hell yeah! I already laid claim,” he teased.
“Without me knowing?”
He gave her his famous bunny grin, and a blush crept into his cheeks. “I mean...if it’s alright with you, Dee.”
“Fuck me, Jungkook,” she mewled.
A growl formed in his throat as the animalistic urge took over. “It will be my pleasure,” he husked. Lining himself to her entrance, he stopped himself from thrusting in. “Is this okay? I mean, I don’t have protection, Dee.”
“Jungkook, if you don’t fuck me right now. I swear–”
The wind got knocked out of her as he thrust into her. Jungkook grunted as he rested his forehead on her shoulder. “Was that too much?”
“J-Just move...fuck Kookie, move!” she begged.
Gripping her hips, Jungkook felt his cock swell inside her pussy. “Oh shit,” he choked out. 
He began a slow, steady rhythm, making sure she was okay with the pace. Of course, he felt the need to go quicker, but he held off. This was only their first time, and he didn’t want to do anything she didn’t agree to do. 
She didn’t care about the tree bark digging into her back. All that was on her mind was this amazing man fucking her silly. She felt so full. He sought her lips, kissing her feverishly. Their grunts and moans filled the emptiness of the park. Devon, now more alert, began to bounce on his cock. Jungkook bit down on his lip, holding back a moan. She was snug around him. He didn’t want this to end. She could feel him throbbing inside, knowing soon he’d come. 
“W-Where do you want it?” he gasped, nibbling on her earlobe.
“In me, Kookie. Fill me up.”
“Oh fuck. I will. I will,” he chanted.
For the second time that night, Devon saw stars as her orgasm slammed over her. It rippled through her body as her pussy quivered around his cock. Jungkook became sloppier with his pace, seeking his own pleasure. He tugged her hair to the side, bitting into her neck to hold in his sounds, but it was too much. He threw his head back as an earth-shattering howl ripped into the night. His cock twitched before spurting out his seed deep into her womb. 
After a few moments, when they caught their breath, Jungkook picked her up with care and laid them both in the grass. Still attached to her, he kept her in his lap. She laid her head on his chest, content with the beating of his heart.
“That was–”
“Incredible? Mind blowing? Magnificent?”
Devon rolled her eyes, attempting to keep still as he was still buried in her pussy. “You give yourself way too much credit.”
Jungkook’s fingers danced along her skin with a giggle. “Do I? I’ll have to try harder.”
Devon let out a slew of curses making him laugh out loud. To prove his point, he raised his hips, making his cock brush her spot. She growled before twisting his nipple. Jungkook yelped, trying to turn away.
“I’m sorry! I’m sorry!”
Devon snorted out a laugh, bending down to peck his lips. “You’re forgiven.”
“Good, but seriously. Are you okay? It wasn’t too rough, was it? Sometimes my wolf can get a bit off-kilter,” he frowned, looking up at the stars, “I’d never wanna hurt you, Dee.”
She felt her heart swell as she stroked his cheek. He leaned into the touch letting out a soft whine. “It was everything I’ve ever wanted Jungkook. You’re amazing.”
“Really?” he looked at her hopefully. 
“Really,” she answered with a grin. He laid back in the grass, closing his eyes briefly. Dragging her nails down his chest, a glint of mischief appeared. “Oh, Kookie?”
“My, my, what big eyes you have.”
He opened one eye. “What?”
“Oh, humor me. I’ve always wanted to say this,” she pouted.
He snorted out a bark. “Fine,”–he sat up, staring at her sinfully. “The better to see you with my dear.”
Devon cooed as she took his hands into her. “My, my, what big hands you have.”
Jungkook gripped her hips, sliding his hands up her back. “Better to hold you with, my dear.”
Devon leaned down to whisper in his ear. “My, my, what a big dick you have.”
He flipped their positions, towering her with a snarl. His eyes smoldered, staring down at her. His lips traveled from her neck to her sternum, nibbling the skin as he went. Devon purred, feeling her body become alive once again.
“The better to fuck you with, my love,” he growled.
By the end of the night, Jungkook had Devon howling his name at least ten more times. 
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607 notes · View notes
kimtaegis · 4 months ago
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he fluffy (cr. dwellingsouls)
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taejinnies · 6 months ago
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seokjinnie + baseball caps = ultimate boyfriend looks
(cr. qdeoks, glitchyoongi)
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cherryvmin · 20 days ago
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To many more wonderful and happy years ahead! Happy 26th birthday to my winterbear and comfort giver 🤎
Cr: | ♡ | ♡ | ♡ |
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latetaektalk · 22 days ago
love to hate you | jjk [vi]
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“when obnoxiously rich and spoiled frat boy jeon jungkook comes up to you one day and asks you to fake date him for money, you definitely should have said no. because before you knew it, you were going on insta dates with him and having lunch with his equally obnoxiously rich and spoiled friends.”
— rating: pg-13
— genre: fratboy! AU, fake dating! AU, college! AU, rich kid! AU, enemies to lovers! AU, angst, fluff
— pairing: jungkook x female reader
— word count: 15.513
— warnings: swearing/cursing, alcohol consumption
— playlist: to be added
— a/n: im not one hundred percent sure abt this chapter but i also dont wanna keep you guys waiting any longer, so here it is!! once again thank you to lira @koocycle​​ for reading this! ily!! and once again, this is inspired by To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han!
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Jimin would say your worst trait was how judgemental you were. You would say your worst trait was how hopeful you were.
Because Jungkook was right. 
Behind all of that cynicism and snark and eye-rolling, there was very much a part of you that was as hopeful as a child on Christmas Eve, believing and thinking of Santa as you fell asleep, excited to wake up in the morning for the presents under the trees. 
You knew that kissing and sleeping with Jungkook was far from smart. You knew even as you did it, when you leaned over and grabbed him by his collar. 
But you had done it. Because the truth was, you couldn’t help it. 
Because kissing and sleeping with Jungkook meant you could forget. More importantly, it meant you could pretend. For that bit of time, you could pretend that he and you were something you were definitely not. It meant you could let that hope grow in you, that hope that maybe, somehow, all of this could miraculously turn out fine, that Jungkook and you weren't the bad decision you thought it was.  
It was nice. 
It was nice to pretend, even if just for a short moment, that you had found someone who saw the not so perfect and not so great and not so picture-perfect parts of you and still chose to stay, someone who cared for you even if you told them your deepest fears and let them in on the shameful and pitiful pieces of you. 
This was stupid, you realised. Putting all of that faith and hope into Jungkook. You should be more careful. Because you knew just how deceiving and cheating hope was, how having hope in someone was like loading the gun, giving it to them, and closing your eyes, waiting to see whether or not they would deliver the final blow. It was like playing Russian roulette. One wrong move and you would be done for.
Hope could kill.
And when you awoke to the ruffling and quiet cursing, your heart knew instantly, sinking in your chest. You hadn’t even opened your eyes. The shot rang loud in your ears. It hurt, but not nearly as much as it did when you finally looked and saw him.
His naked back was turned to you, tattoos running up his right arm and wrapping around his shoulder. He was sitting on the edge of your bed, leaning over to pick up his shirt. And as you watched him slip into it, you knew. 
Jungkook was leaving.
He still hadn’t noticed he had awoken you, and you wanted it to stay that way. Because your eyes were starting to hurt and you knew it wasn’t the lack of sleep. 
But before you could close your eyes and pretend to be fast asleep, he turned and looked at you, his eyes meeting yours. You couldn’t decipher the look, but it was enough to make you freeze, a lump forming in your throat that knotted it tight.
His voice was raspy with sleep, and you hated that your first instinct was to tease him for it. 
“Hey.” It came out slow. “You’re up.”
He smiled a small smile, the kind of smile that could make you melt. But you resisted, your hands tightening into fists at your side. 
You wished you had put on clothes, feeling so goddamn naked and exposed in every way possible right now. Even with the blanket tightly wrapped around you, you thought he could see through you, see into you. And you didn’t want him to see you anymore. So when you straightened up, thankful you were anything but neat, some old clothes just in reach, you made sure your back was facing him.
“I was just gonna-” He pointed towards the door, and a part of you died inside. You wished he wouldn’t speak, wished he would just spare you of this conversation and just leave without a word.
You cringed at how small your voice was, on the verge of breaking, when you spoke. You hoped he couldn’t hear, hoped your shirt muffled the shakiness as you pulled it over your head. “Yeah, just go.”
You couldn’t look at him when you said it, gaze staying averted, vision beginning to swim. If you had just turned to him though, you would have seen the confusion crossing his features, brows furrowing together.
Swallowing the knot in your throat was futile, but you tried anyway. It was getting hard to breathe with it lodged in there. You grabbed an old pair of sweatpants.
“I- weren’t you about—” The words wouldn’t quite leave you. You had to pull them out of you, force them to form. “—to go?” You swallowed, praying finality was swinging with your voice as you continued. “So go.”
You were desperate to sound cold and distant. Because you couldn’t let him know just how much this was affecting you, what kind of unimaginable power he held over you, power you never knew you had given to him until now when your voice was quivering and your eyes burning with tears. You wished you would be stronger, better at this, in control of your emotions just a little bit more.
You got up without another word, tucking a strand behind your ear as you pretended to clean up, grabbing the pieces of your costume and tossing them into the laundry bin before moving over to the two water bottles you had left on your cough, tracing the evidence of last night and throwing them all away. As if you could erase it all like that, like he and you hadn’t happened.
“Cabbage, do you-” There was a pause. You had your back to him. “Do you think I’m leaving?”
“Are you not?” The response came quicker this time, a little more stable too. You grabbed the cookies from the floor, not quite bringing it over your heart to toss them out. So you just put them on the coffee table, hiding them in the mess. 
“Weren’t you just about to get dressed and dip?” There was an edge to your words, as sharp as a knife, ready to plunge and end it all. “Go before I woke up?”
You looked over your shoulder, thinking you would find something in Jungkook’s eyes that would confirm all of the fears you had and the assumptions you were making of him right this moment, that would satisfy something in you and make it easy for you to write him off. But when you saw the look on his face, the confusion and perplexity, you stilled.
“Y/N,” and you loathed how your heart rumbled in your ribcage when he said your name, “I’m not leaving.”
Jungkook stood up and took a step in your direction. But when you backed away, he stopped, face twisting as if he had just physically run against a wall full force, knocking out on it.
“Unless you want me to, of course.” 
You could hear the disappointment in his voice, and all you could do was stare at him.
“But I’m not leaving. I just-” He sighed and rubbed the back of his neck, voice growing quieter when he spoke again. “I was just gonna go out and surprise you with the cookies I promised you. Remember when I stepped on the-” He stopped, sighing. “I just thought I could sneak out without you noticing and then come back and-”
You hated him.
You hated him so much because his words could do things to you they shouldn’t be able to, tear down any attempt of a defence you had built up to bits and pieces, make you relinquish all of the power over your mind, your heart, yourself. You hated him so much because he could make you load the gun and hand it over to him without him even asking for it.
You hated Jungkook so much because in reality, you didn’t hate him at all.
You crossed the distance faster than he could realise it, your arms wrapping around him so tight, he thought you wanted to suffocate him. You knocked the air straight out of his lungs. 
“Cabbage-” He didn’t continue, sensing the shift in the atmosphere. He didn’t understand, but he knew to stay silent. Jungkook hugged you back.
Goosebumps graced his skin, and you held onto him even tighter, eyes screwed shut. His muscles tensed under your touch, and you would have made some stupid comment if you weren’t feeling as much as you were right now. His heart was beating under yours, every beat loud and clear, his chest rising and falling with each breath. He was warm and comfortable. You knew you could fall asleep in his arms.
You found it again, that same sense of peace from last night.
You found it again in his arms.
He wasn’t leaving.
It hadn’t been foolish to have hoped, and for that, you couldn’t even begin to put it into words just how much that meant to you.
“Thank you,” you mumbled into his skin, and Jungkook hugged you tighter. He wasn’t sure what exactly you were thanking him for, so he just kissed the top of your head, mumbling for you not to think about it.
But you did think about it. 
You thought about it every night.
Thought about what it might just mean, him staying. Thought about if maybe, just maybe, somehow his words, the three words he oh so liked to tell you, were true.
When you pulled away, gaze finding his, features soft and tender, you pressing your lips to his was the last thing Jungkook expected you to do. The kiss was slow and calm. It was delicate. The opposite of what you had shared last night. There was no rush at all, no need to prove anything to anyone, no desperation or fear that this might just be over in a second. 
He put his hands on your waist, pulling you close to him and leaning into you, chasing your lips. You smiled, quieting the part of your brain that told you that you shouldn’t be doing this, that you should be talking about the fact that he and you had slept together and were kissing now when you were merely supposed to be fake dating one another, supposed to keep this professional and solely business. 
When you parted, your breathing heavy and your mind clouded, and you looked at Jungkook, you felt something between your ribs. It was weak, but you had an inkling it was about to grow stronger, and soon enough, all-consuming. There was no stopping it. You were in the middle of falling, going down the deep end. You just had to wait to see if by the end, the landing would be graceful or bone-crushing; wait to see if by the end, you were wrong and the gun was going to go off.
You should explain, you were aware. But you couldn’t, the words breaking in your mouth. And when Jungkook whispered, “I know.”, your inability to speak, it was fine, a mutual understanding established. 
You were giving him nothing, at most scraps and pieces. But for now, it was enough.
You pulled him closer and buried your face in the crook of his neck. Closing your eyes, you hoped Jungkook knew what you were trying so desperately but pathetically failing at saying. (Not that you knew what you wanted to say anyway.)
And for a while it was quiet.
“I think,” he began, whispering, “we might have broken a rule, cabbage.”
“Did we?” you mumbled and pulled away to look at him.
He nodded, feigning a frown, as if worried about the consequences that might follow from this rule break. “We did. Rule three.”
“Remind me again which one that is-” 
And when Jungkook wrapped a hand around your neck and tilted your head upwards, you knew. But it was too late. He pressed his lips to yours. You almost started laughing. He was an idiot. An idiot you enjoyed kissing a bit too much.
When you parted, he was grinning. 
“Right, that one.” You cleared your throat, a poor attempt of yours to gain some composure and to calm your thumping heart. “I remember now. Thanks for that... reminder.”
Your words came out breathless and short.
“Always happy to refresh your mind,” Jungkook smirked. “What do we do now?”
You feigned contemplation, letting out a long sigh and puckering your forehead. “Well,” you began, “technically, I didn’t break any rules.”
He raised a brow, and you took that as a sign to continue, a proud smile forming on your lips. 
“Technically, only you,” you dug your finger into his chest for emphasis, “couldn’t kiss me. So technically, only you broke a rule.”
Jungkook rolled his eyes at you. “You’re such a smartass-”
“So technically, I could kiss you.”
You could pinpoint the exact moment your words clicked with him, something changing in his eyes. 
“In that case,” he leaned into you, his lips ghosting over yours, “please kiss me again, cabbage. And please,” he was pleading, tightening his grip around your waist, “never stop.”
Your heart skipped a beat.
“You know,” your voice was a low whisper, and Jungkook listened to your every word, soaking up every syllable, “rules are meant to be broken, right?”
He stilled for a second, eyes turning hazy. The next thing you felt was his lips on yours, his hands gripping you tight and pulling you closer to him. 
There was a sense of urgency in the way Jungkook moved his lips against yours, almost as if he feared you would change your mind any second. You smiled into the kiss. The thought that this insecurity might just be swirling around in his head, it was funny to you. Because you wouldn’t. You would never change your mind, you knew that now.
And even as you were sure that you were sealing your doom with this kiss, that the landing was going to be bone-crushing because there was no possibility of this ending gracefully, the cocking of the gun ringing in your ears, you pulled Jungkook closer to you.
You hoped you were wrong.
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“I’m gonna give you,” you checked the time, “ten minutes to change. If you take any longer, I’m gonna get breakfast without you.”
Jungkook gasped, keys still in the ignition. “You can’t do that!”
“Then go,” you prompted, crossing your arms in front of your chest. 
He practically stumbled out of the car, throwing the door shut behind him with a loud bang. You smiled to yourself as you watched him run around the car, quiet curses slipping past his lips. But when he walked around and opened your car door, you frowned.
You were cut off by him, his hand wrapping around the back of your neck and pulling you forward, crashing his mouth on yours. And as he kissed you, you felt the grin on his lips, growing bigger and bigger. An idiot.
“Sorry, I felt like it,” Jungkook told you when you pulled away and stared at him, both confused and breathless. 
“Nine minutes,” you said, voice a bit shaky. You hoped he didn’t notice, and if he did, he didn’t make note of it, thankfully.
“A minute hasn’t passed!” 
“Yes, it has.”
“In what world-”
“Eight minutes.”
“What?” he sputtered, a mix of disbelief and confusion crossing his features. It made you grin and giggle. “You just said nine minutes!”
There was something so delightful about teasing Jungkook. You couldn’t stop. “And now I’m saying you’ve only got eight left- actually, seven.” Your grin grew. His face crumbled. “You better get going, Jeon. Time’s ticking-”
Jungkook raised a brow when you didn’t finish your sentence, realising that your gaze had shifted to something behind him. And when he turned around and saw a beaming Jisoo standing behind him, he was quick to straighten up and take a step back, as if you weren’t publicly dating.
“Hey,” she began and judging from that grin and everything about her, she had most likely heard some of your conversation and definitely seen your kiss. You cringed, feeling your cheeks warm. 
“Hi,” Jungkook coughed, clearing his throat, awkwardly folding his arms in front of his chest.
“I saw you guys pulling up from the kitchen window,” she told you, pointing behind her. “I’m not interrupting-”
“Why are you here, Ji?” you asked, a bit harsher than intended. You couldn’t help it though, especially not when you thought about how much she was going to tease you later on.
“Hi, nice to see you too, Y/N,” Jisoo grinned, tilting her head. You rolled your eyes at her. 
“We stayed for the night,” she explained. “Joon and the others offered us to crash here.”
“Joon and the others?” You raised a brow. “What are you? Friends?”
And when Jisoo nodded, you stilled. “Yeah.”
You blinked at her, taking a moment to process it all. “Seriously?”
“Yeah, they’re all cool, so why not?” She looked at you, shrugging. Like becoming friends with them was no big deal at all, not realising that Jungkook’s and your so-called relationship was going to end in a matter of time and this was all going to fall apart. 
Your thoughts had to have reflected on your face because Jisoo quirked a brow. “What? Aren’t you happy about your friends getting along with your boyfriend’s?”
“What? No, of course, I am!” you quickly supplied, tucking a strand behind your ear. “I just- I’m just surprised, that’s all.”
Jisoo narrowed her eyes, but before she could say anything-
It was Seokjin, standing in the doorway, an apron tied around his waist. “Are they joining us?”
And Jisoo only seemed to remember now why she had come out in the first place, touching her forehead like how could she forget?
“Right, you guys want to join us for breakfast? We are just about to eat.”
You stilled, a part of you wanting to tell Jisoo that you were only stopping because Jungkook had to change and you were going to head out after that. But there was also another part of you, a bigger one actually, that kind of liked the idea of having breakfast with the others, remembering how easy conversation had been with them last night (before it all went to shit, obviously). And there might also be another part of you that felt bad that you had cut the party short and that wanted his friends to like you. It was tiny though, miniature. Actually nonexistent.
“Oh, thanks, but we were just gonna-”
“Yeah, sure-”
Jungkook and you spoke at the same time. You looked at each other. He frowned, and you pressed your lips together. Jisoo looked between you.
“Okay, well, gonna give you guys a minute,” she said, already backing away. 
“We don’t need-”
“Thanks, we will be right-”
You spoke at the same time again. You stopped and looked at each other once more. Jisoo bit her lip to stop her grin from growing too big, finding this entire situation more than amusing.
“Just come in,” she glanced at Jungkook, “or don’t. Whatever you guys want. You’re more than welcome to join us,” she looked at Jungkook again, “or not.”
And with that, she turned on her heel and jogged towards the house, stopping to inform Seokjin, who was still standing at the doorway, his hands on his hip. When he looked in your direction, a smile growing on his face as he listened to Jisoo talk, you cringed and averted your gaze.
Jungkook immediately turned to you once you were on your own, a frown on his face.
“You know you don’t gotta have breakfast with them, right?” he told you, assuming incorrectly your words had been solely out of obligation, not realising that you might just want to try to befriend his friends. 
“I know but-” 
He quirked a brow, and you could feel his gaze on your face. You couldn’t meet it, tucking a strand behind your ear. 
Clearing your throat, you started again, “Let’s just… have breakfast with them.”
“Let’s just have breakfast with them,” you repeated, firmer this time. 
“Cabbage, you really don’t have to. They won’t be mad-”
“I know. That’s not why I’m saying that,” you said, shifting in your seat and looking at the house behind him. 
Dozens and dozens of red solo cups were littering the lawn, the cobwebs that covered the windows last night had either fallen off or were on the verge to, and the chains of lights along the house were now turned off, broken probably. The dozens of pumpkins that had lined the front door had reduced to two single sad ones, one of them looking like they had been stepped on. And on top of that, you were pretty sure people had thrown up on the lawn, spotting a distant pile of what looked like someone’s dinner. To say the house looked less than inviting wouldn’t even begin to put it into words. But still, when you turned to Jungkook again, your answer hadn’t changed.
“I’m really hungry, so let’s just stay here and eat with the others,” you lied- well, actually, it wasn’t a complete lie. You were hungry, but it was definitely not the entire truth either.
Before Jungkook could say anything else, you unbuckled the seat belt and jumped out of the car, throwing the door shut. Still somewhat hesitant, he locked the car, but when you grabbed his hand, he stumbled after you.
“You’re really sure about this?” he asked you once you stepped onto the lawn. You stopped, looking at him.
And you meant that, unlike last night when you could feel your heart beating in your throat and the anxiety webbing your chest tight. Because something just told you that you were going to end up having fun like last night, even if it might be awkward in the beginning. This was going to be fine. You didn’t know where you got that feeling from, but it was there. It might just be linked to the hand you were holding, knowing that you could count on it always being there for you to grab onto.
And your confidence had to have reflected on your face, the corners of Jungkook’s eyes crinkled up, his lips pulling up into a huge smile. “Okay, let’s go now.”
The excitement was evident in his voice. It made you smile.
The floor was sticky with alcohol and covered with red solo cups like the lawn when you walked in. You cringed when you saw one guy slumped on the couch, fast asleep. His neck was going to hurt like hell. It was unbearable inside here, the air stifling and wet. People hadn’t just been throwing up outside. It was probably why your friends were all in the backyard, sitting in a circle, right at the exact same spot where you had left them, the ones that had the luxury of living here and owning a wardrobe had changed, donning their baggiest and most comfortable clothing. 
“Oh!” Jimin exclaimed when he spotted you from afar, his lips splitting into the biggest grin. “You guys made it!” It turned to a smirk as he looked at Jungkook from head to toe. “Still in your costume, huh?”
Chaeyoung was quick to shove his shoulder, hissing at him, but you couldn’t catch what she said. Not that you could focus on her words anyway, the feeling of the tips of your ears burning up taking up all of your brain space. 
You were going to murder Jimin.
“God, couldn’t you have at least changed? We get it, you’re a couple,” Taehyung mumbled, mouth stuffed with eggs and bacon, hunched over his plate.
“You’re so jealous, Tae. It’s embarrassing. Why do I have to change, huh?” Jungkook laughed, holding onto your hand tighter. “Don’t worry, one day you’ll find your Katara too-”
Taehyung interrupted him with a loud scoff. “Please, no, thank you. I’m a happy single man.”
“Sure, you are.” Jungkook rolled his eyes before turning to you, lowering his voice. “I do have to change, so I’m gonna-”
You nodded, understanding. Your face was still burning. “Yeah, uh, just go.”
“Be right back,” he told the others, giving your hand one more squeeze, as if to assure you again, before letting go, a smile on his face as he walked away.
“Sit,” Namjoon said, showing you the two chairs they had saved for you, the exact same seats you had sat in last night too. You did as he said, and just like last night as well, Jennie asked you what you would like to drink. In a matter of minutes, you were holding a warm cup of tea in one hand and a plate with a piece of freshly buttered toast, some scrambled eggs and a handful of strips of bacon in the other.
“You know what I just realised?” Yoongi hummed, his cup of coffee hovering in front of his lips, eyes on you. You froze. He still had smudges of makeup on his cheeks. “Kook and Y/N are exactly like Jin and Mina used to be.”
You stared at Yoongi, eyes unblinking because you weren’t sure if that was meant to be a good thing or not, still fearing that he might just not like you after the comment you had made about his music.
“Don’t worry,” Seokjin assured you with a grin, knowing exactly what you were thinking. He was still donning the apron. “It’s a good thing. Mina and I are still dating. Means he sees you guys lasting.”
You opened your mouth but closed it again. You didn’t know how to respond. And how could you? Jungkook and you were, unlike Seokjin and Mina, the opposite of real. You two were going to break up in a matter of a couple weeks. Yoongi was dead wrong.
“Didn’t you used to say that you and Mina were annoying as fuck?” Taehyung asked, turning to the older and puckering his forehead. Namjoon bumped his knee with Taehyung’s, giving him a look. But the younger one just stared back, oh so innocent. Hoseok choked on his drink. 
“What? Yoongi?”
Yoongi sat up in his seat, preparing to respond and defend himself, but you didn’t hear it. Instead, you flinched, Jimin suddenly plopping into the empty seat next to you, his arm around you. You didn’t have to look at him to know there was a smirk plastered on his lips. Jisoo appeared next to you as well, having quietly asked Jennie to switch seats with her. The same look adorned her face.
“So,” Jimin started, and you already hated it, wishing Jungkook would come back and tell Jimin to get out of his seat. But he was still gone. Why was it taking him this long to change? “How’s it going with Kook?”
You didn’t meet his gaze, tucking a strand behind your ear. You cleared your throat. “Like always. Why are you asking?”
“You wanna talk about the kiss last night?” Jisoo hummed, and you cringed. Why did they have to ambush you?
“Oh, right! The kiss!” Jimin exclaimed, far too loud and excited. You contorted your face both in embarrassment and in pain, rubbing your ear because you were sure you had just burst an eardrum.
“That was certainly something,” Taehyung chimed in, a grin on his face, turning away from Yoongi and Seokjin, who were arguing now because of him. You wished he wouldn’t butt into this conversation too. It was already bad enough. “Hollywood’s calling, love. That one was for the books.”
“Silver screens. You mean for the silver screens,” Jisoo corrected.
“Right, sorry.” Taehyung held up his hands and feigned remorse. “I obviously meant for the silver screens-”
“What’s with you and Jennie, huh?” you tried, raising a brow at Jisoo, but she simply laughed into your face. 
“You’re not changing the topic, Y/N,” she told you with a grin. “It’s going well though. Thanks for asking.”
And when you saw the look on her face as she turned to Jennie, wrapped up in a conversation with Hoseok, you genuinely felt happy for her. It didn’t last long though.
“Anyway, Kook and you,” she clapped her hands together, “when’s the wedding?”
You rolled your eyes. “When’s yours with Jennie?”
“January 15th,” Jisoo shot back without even a second of hesitation, and you hated her for it. “When’s yours now?”
Deciding this was futile, you turned your focus back on the plate in your hand. You shoved a forkful of eggs into your mouth, frowning when you saw that shit-eating grin on Taehyung’s face. Why did you have to sit across from him again?
“You better credit me, Y/N,” Jimin said, and you frowned. “You know, for getting Kook and you together.”
You blinked at him a handful of times. “You didn’t though.”
“Oh, I’m sorry, did you not meet your boyfriend because I called you to pick me up? Was it not that night when you started talking?” He looked too smug for his own good. “If I don’t get at least a mention in the wedding speech-”
“Right, Jimin, I’m definitely gonna talk about how you got so shitfaced, I had to take an Uber in the middle of the night to pick you up and how your drunken ass then claimed to be a part of the goddamn sidewalk for so long, my uber drove away. Don’t worry, I’ll be sure to make a mention of that,” you said, certain you had won this now, but Jimin’s grin only grew bigger and smugger.
“So you are getting married to Kook, huh?”
You cursed Jimin and his selective hearing, your head throbbing at this point. When you met Taehyung’s gaze, the corners of your mouth downturned even more. Luckily for you though, the moment was cut short.
“Does anyone want anything? I’m going back inside,” Seokjin announced, and you were quick to raise your hand even though your plate was still half-full. Because of certain people, you hadn’t had the chance to touch much of it.
“Yes, I’m going with you.” Before Jimin or Jisoo could tell you to stay seated, you stood up and placed your plate and mug on the chair. Without sparing them a single glance, you walked away, Seokjin following you.
“Jimin and Jisoo giving you a hard time?” he asked you once you were in the kitchen, and you frowned, asking yourself how he had made breakfast in this mess.
“When are they not?” you mumbled, stacking up the red solo cups, beginning the cleaning process. 
He smiled. “Well, what are friends for if not to annoy the shit out of you, am I right?”
You nodded and laughed before cringing when you touched something wet and sticky. Seokjin handed you a kitchen towel. 
“You don’t gotta do that, you know? We’re just gonna clean up once everybody is up,” he told you, taking a peek into the adjacent living room in which a handful of guys were passed out in, either on the couch or in the corner of the room. You waved him off, continuing to gather the cups.
“It’s fine.” You looked around. “Where is the-”
He took the stack of cups from you, the garbage under the sink, obviously. 
“I’m happy to help,” you mumbled, grabbing new cups again. He joined you, the actual reason for why he wanted to go into the kitchen forgotten about. “Plus, I feel like I owe you guys at least this much.”
Seokjin stopped at your words, raising a brow. 
“What do you mean?”
You couldn’t meet his gaze.
“I mean after last night-” You shook your head, looking away. You could feel his eyes on you, digging into your face. “I don’t know. I’m just sorry for ruining the party.”
Clearing your throat, you grabbed the new stack of cups and moved over to the sink, tossing it into the garbage. 
“Y/N,” Seokjin began, and it was the way he said your name that made you look back at him, “you know that you didn’t ruin the party, right? And that you also don’t have to feel bad or responsible for anything?”
You disagreed.
“Us ending the party early was a decision we made on our own. You bear no responsibility for that whatsoever.”
He stared at you, gaze unwavering. It was weird. If anyone had told you a few weeks ago, you would be standing in the Beta Tau Sigma kitchen after their annual Halloween party cleaning up and having a serious talk with Kim Seokjin, you would have told them they were crazy. Funny how quickly things could change.
“I just- I just think I made a bigger deal out of it than it-”
“You didn’t though, Y/N,” Seokjin cut in, and you felt like a child getting lectured. “Jimin explained to us how you know Jae and what happened between you, and honestly, you could have thrown a drink into his face and cursed at him and none of us would have thought you made a big deal out of it. If anything, we’re surprised you reacted as calm about it as you did. Especially because he brought Gayeon too.”
You pressed your lips together. “Is she…”
You couldn’t finish his sentence, but Seokjin nodded.
It was quiet for a while.
“Please don’t feel bad, Y/N,” he told you, breaking the silence. “You’ve had every right to react the way you did. No one is mad at you for it, and you didn’t ruin the party either. If anything, I did for bringing Jae-”
“What? No!” You frowned. “You couldn’t have known!”
Seokjin smiled. “Well, then no one is responsible for last night.” He tilted his head to the side. “Can we agree on that?”
You were impressed by how quickly he had unwrapped all of the guilt and quenched it. It made you smile.
“Yeah, fine. Let’s agree on that.”
And with that, Seokjin was grinning. “Amazing.”
You mirrored him. Your smile grew when you returned and saw Jungkook in his seat, Jimin and Jisoo sitting on their own. He was donning a pair of sweatpants and a hoodie. His outfit was as simple and basic as it got, and still, you thought he looked beautiful. Jungkook was so pretty to the point it hurt.
“You good?” he asked you when you slipped into the seat next to him, confused by the smile on your face. You locked eyes with Seokjin before nodding and taking his hand into yours. His eyes grew big.
You squeezed his hand and looked around yourself. There was something so nice about seeing your friends bond with Jungkook’s. It made your heart swell in your chest, friendships being formed right in front of your eyes. You expertly ignored the question of what was going to happen once you broke up, deciding that, just like the question of why you had kissed and slept with Jungkook and why your heart always beat and thumped a bit harder than usual when you saw him now, the answer wasn’t important.
“I’m good.”
Jungkook smiled at you, pressing a kiss to your temple. You grinned back at him. And as you struck up a conversation with Jennie, asking her what she was majoring in, you failed to notice the look Jungkook and Taehyung shared.
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You were sitting in the living room, talking to Namjoon about the new book you had just read, waiting for Jungkook to finish getting ready when Hoseok and Taehyung strolled in together, the two having surprisingly become gym buddies over the last two weeks.
“Love, what are you doing here?” Taehyung asked, almost accusatory. “Don’t you have a date with Zuko?”
“You’ve been taught what a greeting is, right?” you shot back, smiling when he rolled his eyes at you. 
“He’s changing,” Namjoon supplied when you wouldn’t, and Hoseok gave you a look. You shrugged. Taehyung and you were still not playing nice with each other, all of your words having bite and snark rubbed in between them.
“Where are you guys going?” Hoseok asked, putting down his gym bag and sitting down next to you.
He frowned. “Didn’t you have dinner together two days ago?”
You quirked a brow. “And?”
Hoseok was quick to raise his hands, as if to show you he meant no ill. “I’m just saying. I wasn’t-”
You shook your head, a grin pulling on your lips as Hoseok rolled his eyes at you. Taehyung plopped down on the couch too, sighing heavily.
“You guys have been hanging out a lot these days,” he noted. “We barely see Kook anymore.”
He was definitely accusing you right now. You arched a brow, as if to tell him you were ready to bite back.
 “Sad you’re not seeing him anymore?”
“Of course,” he shot back, staring you down. This was a challenge. Who gives in first? Definitely not you. “Don’t you think you’re hogging his time?”
“Tae,” Namjoon grunted before you could answer, levelling him a glare.
“What? Don’t you agree with me, Joon? When was the last time you had a Netflix marathon with him?”
“They’re young and in love. Let them be-”
You saw him first, the rest of Namjoon’s sentence not registering with you at all, the challenge with Taehyung completely forgotten about. You had lost, but you didn’t care at all. 
If you had thought that the bouquet of roses he gave to you when you started dating was huge, then, well, this one was ginormous. 
“Jeon,” you began before stopping again, voice thin.
He grinned, stepping out, casually holding the bouquet like it wasn’t half his size.
“Uh, what the fuck?” Taehyung blurted out, saying exactly what you were thinking.
Hoseok looked at you, but your gaze was zeroed in on Jungkook. You got up slowly, meeting him halfway, still stunned.
“Why?” you whispered, and he grinned.
“Happy one month, cabbage,” Jungkook told you, and you clasped your hands in front of your mouth. You had completely forgotten. Shit.
Red carnations stared right back at you, beautiful and perfect in every sense, right at their peak blooming. Baby’s breath filled out the bouquet, contrasting the deep rich red with its white petals. You didn’t even want to think about how much they must have cost, especially now that you were in the middle of autumn, the weather getting colder by the second. It was starting to feel like winter actually. Not to mention, the size of the bouquet. It had to have been a fortune. It hurt your heart to know he spent this much money on you.
(And when you came across the meaning of red carnations and baby’s breath a few weeks later, your heart broke in your chest into bits and pieces, losing your mind in the process of it all. 
New Love. 
“Jeon,” you began again but failed one more time. He was grinning at you, unbothered that you had clearly not known that it was your one month anniversary and had nothing for him. Your face scrunched up together. God, you were the worst.
“It’s fine,” he told you, knowing what you were thinking, and you shook your head. It was not.
You turned. It was Taehyung, of course. Namjoon sent him a glare, and Hoseok tried and failed to hide his snicker. Noticing that everybody was looking at him, he explained himself, “It’s only been a month. Don't act like you have been dating for ten years.”
Jungkook took it with humour, shrugging. “Sorry that I know what being romantic means.”
Taehyung was quick to scoff. “That’s not romantic. That’s gross.”
Sensing this was going to go on and on unless you put an end to it, you placed your hand on Jungkook’s chest. He looked at you. 
“Let’s just go,” you told him, and his features softened.
“Okay, yeah, let’s just go,” he repeated, nodding. Waving to the others, he bid them farewell, and you did the same. Even Taehyung grumbled a goodbye in your direction, not without adding once more how gross you were though.
“I’m sorry,” you immediately said the moment you were in the car, the bouquet of flowers still clasped close to your chest. “I’m really so sorry, Jeon. I-”
“It’s fine, cabbage,” Jungkook told you, a laugh spilling from him, clearly more amused than offended about this. You couldn’t laugh with him, the guilt growing in your chest and knotting your throat shut. “Don’t worry.”
You did though. You were worried. Because you didn’t want him to believe that you didn’t care. You did. You just had the worst memory possible. It was a shitty excuse, but it was the truth. 
“Also,” he continued before you could voice any of your thoughts, turning around and grabbing something from the back and handing it over to you, “that’s your actual gift.”
You looked down.
Your gaze lifted back up to him, eyes soft and heart beating too fast. “Jeon.”
“I still owe you from last time. You know, when you caught me-”
“Sneaking out? Yeah, I remember,” you mumbled, looking at the cookies. Seo’s Bakery. How many times had he made the trip across the city just for you now? “I remember, Jeon.”
He stared at you.
“I know you don’t really like flowers, but it just felt wrong to just give you cookies,” he told you, and you wondered if your heart was ever going to stop beating like that, if you were ever going to move on from this. 
Your eyes lifted to Jungkook.
There was so much you were feeling in this moment right now, but above all, you felt so much love. You felt it deep within you, it was paralysing and terrifying. You never knew you could feel this loved before. 
Not knowing what else to do, you leaned over, pressing your lips to his, wishing and hoping and praying that he knew, that somehow, you could share with him how you were feeling this way.
Your hand around the back of his neck was firm, holding him there. You needed him to know. When you pulled away, out of breath, you cringed at the sound of the wrapping paper wrinkling. The flowers had gotten a bit squished during the kiss. You tried fixing them, but it was futile. Oh well, sacrifices had to be made.
“Someone is thankful,” Jungkook grinned, and even though you wanted to roll your eyes at him and tell him to shut it, you didn’t, pulling out a cookie instead and handing it to him. 
“Here.” He stared at you. “I know it’s not much, but-”
“You’re sharing your cookie with me?” Jungkook gasped, his mouth splitting into a grin. “Seriously?”
“You don’t gotta be ironic about-”
“What? No, I’m not!” He grabbed the cookie. “I’m serious! Thank you, cabbage.”
And as you looked at him, his smile too big for the fact that you had merely offered to share a cookie with him, you knew you had to make it up to him somehow. 
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You always craved something sweet after dinner. 
That was what you told him at least. The reality was that, and you hated to admit that, you wanted to stretch out the night just a little bit longer. You didn’t want to go home just yet. Dinner with Jungkook wasn’t enough. You needed more because once you were alone, the question of what you were doing, spending so much time with him when you were only merely fake dating, loomed over you. And you couldn’t bear the thought of the answer.
So here you were, sitting on a park bench, bowls of ice cream in both of your hands. Admittedly, it wasn’t a great idea. You should have probably picked another desert, with it being the middle of November and all. You were already freezing, even more so now. But well, here you were, shovelling heaps of ice cream into your mouths. 
“On a scale of bordering on public indecency to influencer annoying, how cheesy do you want me to make this post?”
You looked over to him, quirking a brow, spoon still in your mouth, the ice cream dissolving on your tongue.
“What would it be for? Our one month?” He nodded, and you pressed your lips into a thin line, thinking about how everybody was going to see it, Narae included.
“Make it influencer annoying.”
Jungkook nodded again, quickly typing up a caption. “Good?”
You squinted when he showed you his phone. He had chosen a picture of the bouquet, captioning it with “one month with the most beautiful, amazing, kindest, funniest, and smartest person ive ever met. im truly the luckiest person. i love you cabbage”.
“Wait, give me,” you mumbled, taking the phone out of his hand and adding one more sentence. 
“‘love is actually real people’,” Jungkook read out, laughter spilling from his throat. “You know, I might just have not exaggerated when I said you’re the funniest person.”
You grinned, but still, the post wasn’t perfect. “It’s not cheesy enough,” you told him before stretching out your hand. “Can I-?”
Jungkook handed you his phone wordlessly, watching you with furrowed brows as you clicked out of Instagram and opened his camera app. You were lucky the park was well lit and you were sitting right underneath a street light because as you held up the phone, the camera flipped inwards, the lightning was just enough. He was quick to catch up, moving closer to you, a smile on his lips. But when you shook your head and let your arm fall, his frown returned. It melted away though when you looked at him and pressed your lips to his cheek, the shutter going off several times. 
You never thought you would be voluntarily taking pictures with Jungkook, even less pictures in which you were kissing his cheek. But things had changed drastically over the last couple of weeks. And you became more and more aware of it.
By the end, you had made a completely new post, one that consisted of several pictures from your camera roll and his; the first picture was the one you had just taken now, the next one a picture he had snapped of you when you were at the pumpkin patch, your brows pinched together as you looked for the perfect pumpkin, the next one was one you had grabbed when you were in philosophy class last week and he was on the verge of dozing off, his head resting on your shoulder, and the last one was a selfie he had taken when you were in Seo’s Bakery, half of his face was cut off to get you on the picture, you hovering in front of the glass display, unaware of what he was doing, but the goofy smile on his lips was evident.
And as Jungkook hit post, you wished you had Instagram. You wished you could dedicate an entire post to him too.
“You know,” you mumbled, long after you had finished your ice cream. You were just sitting on the bench now, your head leaned against his shoulder. He hummed, prompting you to continue. 
“If today’s our one month—” He hummed again. “—we would break up right around Christmas.”
Jungkook stilled, and you turned to him.
“Oh.” He blinked a couple of times. “I hadn’t even realised.”
“Me neither,” you admitted quietly, letting your words sit in the air. It was a sad thought, breaking up during the holidays. There was truly nothing worse, right?
“I mean it’s in the contract-”
“Do you wanna maybe extend-”
You stilled, mortification setting in with you. You lowered your head, feeling stupid and deeply embarrassed.
You cringed, quick to back away, shooting up like you had been bitten by a spider.
“N-nothing. It’s nothing,” you stammered, clearing your throat and waving your hand in front of your face as if a cloud of embarrassment was hovering in front of you and you could shoo it away like that. He was staring at you, you could feel it. It made this moment so much more painful. You wished he wouldn’t. 
“Were you about to suggest to date-”
“No!” you quickly cut in, and backed off some more, the proximity too much for you to handle. You grabbed the empty ice cream bowls. “I’m gonna throw-”
Jungkook held you back by your arm, pulling you back down when you tried standing up, forcing you to turn to him. Your eyes were wide when you looked at him. 
“Cabbage, were you about to suggest that we should date longer?”
You blinked at him. You couldn’t read his face. What were you supposed to say? Because yes, you absolutely fucking were. But now you were regretting it with every fiber of your being. He was going to mock you, tell you how stupid you were for thinking he would date you even longer than necessary. Did I need to remind you that this was all just a bet?, you could already hear him say it.
“We aren’t dating,” you blurted out, voice thin and shaky, heart beating in your throat as you spoke. You were latching onto the most pointless detail. “We are fake dating.”
He rolled his eyes. “Fine,” he sighed, “were you about to suggest that we should fake date longer?”
You didn’t like the way Jungkook overemphasised ‘fake’. It was like he thought the clarification was unnecessary when it was very much the opposite. This was all fake, you had to remember that. Definitely, fake, all of it. This was for show, even today. And that was good. It was good that it was all fake and not real. You were happy with that. You couldn’t delude yourself into the opposite.
“I don’t know,” you looked down, “I don’t know. I-”
Jungkook smiled. In fact, he smiled so much, his eyes scrunched up into half-moons, his nose wrinkling too. He had to bite his tongue to stop the laugh from spilling out, knowing very well what kind of reaction it would elicit out of you.
“Okay, cabbage, listen,” he bit his lip to stop the smile from growing too big, “I don’t know what you were suggesting, but if you’re willing to break the contract,” he paused, placing his hand on yours, “we could date a little longer.”
You lifted your gaze, trying to gauge if Jungkook was being serious or mocking you. But you found no traces of the latter.
“I only suggested it,” you scrunched your nose, picking a piece of lint off your pants, “because Jimin would be devastated if we ‘broke up’ right before Christmas.”
“Right, yeah,” he hummed, the grin evident in his voice. “Me too obviously.”
And for some reason, Jungkook admitting that made your heart clench in your chest and your throat grow tight. For some reason, you wished he hadn’t said that. For some reason, there was a part of you that wanted him to tell you he made that suggestion for a very different reason. 
The faint smell of gunpowder lingered in the air.
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“What does it say, Ji? What exactly does it say?”
“Well, like I’ve said before,” Jisoo wildly gestured around with the instruction manual, “it says to put the thingy into that long thingy and then just stick it together until it clicks and turn it 360 degrees-”
“360 degrees? That’s a whole turn, Ji!”
“I know! You’re supposed to screw it in!”
“Then why didn’t you say that?”
“I said to turn it 360-”
“Break!” you yelled, throwing the screwdriver to the side, sick of listening to Jisoo and Chaeyoung yell at each other. And just as the two were about to argue with you, you put up your hand. “No, no, no, we’re taking a break. I know you guys wanna finish this, but clearly,” you pointed at the ‘progress’ you had made so far, “it’s not going very well. We’re taking a break.”
And that was how you ended up scavenging Chaeyoung’s snack cabinet, the three of you plopping down on her couch once the treasures were secured, your limbs and muscles aching from all of the work. Why did you think setting up a desk and a dresser on the same day was a good idea? It was a miracle you managed to finish the desk at all.
“How’s it going with Jennie?” Chaeyoung asked, shoving a handful of chips into her mouth, her hands similarly greasy like her hair. It had been a long day. You weren’t finishing the dresser, you were certain of that much.
Jisoo smiled at Jennie’s mention. Chaeyoung and you shared a look. “Good. It’s going really well.”
“Yeah?” you teased, raising a brow. “Have you guys been texting?”
She nodded, her smile breaking into a grin. “Yeah, maybe.”
You laughed when Jisoo looked away, face flushed. 
“You think you two could actually be something?” Chaeyoung asked, and you zeroed in on Jisoo, not wanting to miss her reaction. Her cheeks reddened even more.
“I don’t know.” She shrugged. “Maybe.”
Chaeyoung and you exchanged another glance. Jisoo picked up on it, knowing very well what that meant. So she cleared her throat and pointed at Chaeyoung. “Well, what, uh, about Seok and you?”
It was comical how quickly Chaeyoung’s face fell, the smile wiped off her lips, replaced by the same look of embarrassment Jisoo was still wearing. “What? Seok and I? T-there’s nothing-”
“Oh, please,” you groaned, rolling your eyes. “How much longer are we gonna pretend like you two don’t obviously and very clearly like each other?”
Chaeyoung gasped, exasperated by this insinuation that there was something between Hoseok and her because we are just friends!. Jisoo and you were losing patience.
“Yeah, like dude, I saw you two getting close during the Halloween party,” Jisoo laughed, and you never knew what mortification looked like until now. “You literally showed up in a couple’s costume. And don’t even try that entire ‘Oh, I didn’t know what to dress up as and oh, no, I just happened to have a Gryffindor costume that made me coincidentally look a lot like Ginny and oh, no, Hoseok happened to be Harry Potter’ bullshit.”
“Even Jeon noticed it,” you added. “And that was after meeting you guys once.”
“Look! Even Y/N’s stupid boyfriend noticed it,” Jisoo said, and you threw a piece of chocolate at her. She dodged it though, plopping it into her mouth with a big grin. “Actually, Joon asked me about you guys.”
“Yoongi and Jin asked me recently too,” you said, remembering the conversation you had with them a few days ago. “Actually, they just-”
“I don’t wanna talk about this,” Chaeyoung hissed, looking just about ready for the universe to swallow her up whole. 
Jisoo and you looked at each other before cracking up.
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You were sipping on your second wine glass of the night, washing down the greasy pizza with it when Chaeyoung gasped next to you.
“You said you’d delete that picture, Ji!” 
Jisoo unabashedly laughed into Chaeyoung’s face, holding out her phone. “Well, guess who lied?”
You rolled your eyes and patted Chaeyoung on the back. “It’s not that bad.”
“It’s me shitfaced and I’m sleeping on the bathroom floor!” she hissed, staring at you like you were to blame for the picture. (And well, you had been the one that had grabbed Jisoo’s phone and taken it, but that was beside the point. You weren’t bringing it up again, Jisoo was.) 
“No worse than any of Jimin’s drunk pictures,” you assured her, but it didn’t offer much consolation, her pout staying on her face.
“Look, everyone gets shitfaced sometimes. No shame in that. Look!” Jisoo showed her a picture of Hoseok and Jimin who were both lying on the floor, drunk out of their minds and laughing about something you were sure was nowhere as funny as they made it out to be. “Or wait, I’ve got one of Y/N too.”
But when Jisoo swiped to the next picture, it didn’t show you, but your friend group, huddled together at some club, all of you at a different level of drunk. Jimin was the worst, eyes completely blown out. You had goofy grins on your lips. Hoseok had his arm wrapped around Chaeyoung’s upper waist, her hand on the small of his back. Jisoo and you both noticed it instantly, sharing a look. But Chaeyoung pretended not to see. Before you could call her out on it though, you saw how tight you were holding onto Jisoo in the picture, your knuckles white, and you cringed.
“I’ve never seen that picture before,” Chaeyoung said, eyes still glued to the screen.
“When was that?” you asked, not recalling taking, or even posing, for this picture. 
Jisoo tapped the screen, the date and time of the picture appearing. “Oh, wow, that was recent. Just two months ago. On the fifth.” 
“Oh, wasn’t that the club Jimin took us to?” Chaeyoung asked, sipping on her beer.
“Dude, I barely remember anything from that night,” Jisoo laughed, taking a bite from her pizza and putting away her phone.
“Well, I only remember getting abandoned by you guys and locking myself in the bathroom,” you said, scrunching your nose, still feeling petty over that entire night.
“Isn’t that when you met bathroom guy?” Chaeyoung asked, shoving the last piece of crust into her mouth. You rolled your eyes at his mention. It was getting old.
“Not to be overly like Jimin right now, but do you guys ever think we’re gonna solve that mystery? Of bathroom guy?” Her wine swooshed from side to side in her wine glass, almost spilling over. Chaeyoung took it from Jisoo, fearing, just like you, she was about to spill it all. “Or you think he’s gonna land in the X-Files?”
“You do know that the show solves paranormal cases, right?”
Jisoo looked at you. 
“Sure, I do.” Chaeyoung snorted. Jisoo sounded so unconvincing, it was comical. “Don’t you think it’s paranormal that you of all people trusted a stranger and had a serious, genuine talk with them?”
You gasped and shoved at her shoulder. 
“What? Am I wrong?”
“You’re mean,” you told her, shoving her shoulder once more when she rolled her eyes at you.
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Jungkook came to pick you up an hour later, showing up at Chaeyoung’s place in a coat you had never seen. It was old, he told you at the door.
“Ah, Jeon!” Jisoo grumbled, appearing behind you while you were still tying your boots. “Did you have to come this early? We were just enjoying ourselves!”
“She texted me to come pick her up,” Jungkook said, holding up his hand and looking at you, as if to shift all of the blame on you. Jisoo turned to you.
You shrugged. “I’m tired.”
She squinted her eyes at you, scoffing. “You just don’t want to talk about bathroom guy.” She leaned down, face right in front of yours, and you could smell the wine on her breath. She levelled you with a look, gaze digging into yours. “You seriously never saw his face?”
“That’s the fifth time you’re asking me this question now,” you said, rolling your eyes and backing away. “Also, what happened to not wanting to be overly like Jimin?”
“Well, maybe it’s not so wrong to be overly like Jimin. I mean what’s wrong with being curious?” she shot back, and you laughed, rising to your feet and dusting off your butt.
“Nothing.” You grabbed your coat and slipped into it, wrapping your scarf around your neck. “There’s something very wrong about being annoying though.”
She gasped.
“Just get over it, Ji,” Chaeyoung said, having listened on the conversation the entire time. “We’ll never find out who he is.”
And at that, Jisoo pouted, her cheeks rosy red from all of the wine. You gave Chaeyoung a look, and she knew. Good luck with a drunk Jisoo! She sighed, and you almost laughed, feeling just the tiniest bit of guilt for leaving her to deal with Jisoo on her own. But then you remembered how she had done the same a couple of weeks ago to you, just with the difference it had been Hoseok picking her up.
“Anyway—” you turned to Jungkook, who had been silently standing there the entire time, doe-eyed and clearly confused. You smiled. “—it’s time to go.”
You grabbed his hand, the two of you bidding your friends goodbye before walking out, the harsh and frigid wind greeting you once you were outside. You shuddered and pulled your coat tighter around you, glad for the scarf you had with you.
“Aren’t you cold?” you asked as you walked towards his car. Jungkook shrugged, digging the keys out of his pocket.
“I don’t get cold easily.”
You wrinkled your nose, not all that happy with his answer. “You should dress warmer.” 
He smiled, grabbing the door for you and gesturing for you to jump in. You did, happy when he shut the door and effectively also the cold. 
“Thanks for picking me up, by the way.” 
“Of course,” Jungkook smiled, giving you a half-smirk while clicking the seat belt into place. “Can’t let my girlfriend go home alone at this time of-”
“Fake girlfriend,” you corrected, pulling the seat belt across your chest.
He paused, and you glanced in his direction then.
“Well, look at all of the things I do for you and you’re just my fake girlfriend. Could you imagine what things I’d do for you if we were actually dating?” Jungkook hummed, and you froze.
You opened and closed your mouth several times, your mind wiped blank. You didn’t snap back until Jungkook started laughing. Your cheeks flushed hot, irritation quickly mixing with the embarrassment you were feeling.
“I hate you,” you hissed as the car sputtered to life underneath you. 
“Sure you do,” he grinned as he pulled out. You rolled your eyes in response, biting your tongue. You weren’t in the mood for that now.  
You lapsed into silence, and for a while, it stayed that way until Jungkook poked you in the ribs. You flinched, shoving his hand aside.
“Can I ask you something?”
You groaned dramatically. “Do you have to?”
He was already looking at you when you turned to him, the two of you conveniently sitting at a red light. You blinked, confused by the look on his face. It was serious, a complete switch from a minute ago. There was something in his eyes, but you couldn’t pinpoint it. You shifted in your seat, confused and almost fearful of what he was going to ask you. It was rare for him to be this serious. And almost automatically you assumed it had to be something bad.
“What is it?” You quirked a brow. “You’re scaring me-”
“It’s nothing bad,” Jungkook quickly assured you, realising how his wording had made it sound. “It’s just-”
And when he wouldn’t continue, you narrowed your eyes. “Just ask.”
An entire eternity seemed to pass between yours and his words.
“Do you—” he shifted his gaze back on the street when the light turned green, the sentence coming out as slow as the traffic was moving. It was dark and had been raining all day. “—really not know who bathroom guy is?”
You blinked at him a handful of times before bursting out into laughter.
“God, Jeon!” you exclaimed, shaking your head, unsure of whether or not you wanted to roll your eyes at him or shove at his shoulder. “That’s your question?”
“W-what?” he sputtered as if you were being absurd right now and not him. “It’s a legitimate question!”
“How?” you laughed, still shaking your head. “You really got me there for a second, you know?”
“I said it was nothing bad,” he said, and you decided in the end to just roll your eyes at him. He was driving after all. “Well,” he glanced at you, “do you?”
“Jeon,” you began, a smile on your lips because god, this was stupid, “I wasn’t kidding when I told Ji, I had never seen his face.”
“Okay, but you said… you guys bonded in a way?” Jungkook scratched the back of his head, his face twisted in something you couldn’t figure out. “I just- have you tried finding out who he is?”
And with that, you knew he wasn’t going to let go of this. Just like Jisoo hadn’t for the entire night. You couldn’t quite blame him for being curious though. After all, you had lied to him about bathroom guy’s identity and never bothered to elaborate on it. 
You sighed and looked out the window.
“Well, I did.”
Jungkook turned to you, something flickering across his features. But you missed it, eyes not meeting.
“You did?”
You tugged on your sweater when you spoke again, admitting this beyond embarrassing for you.
“I went to another party a week later. I thought- I thought I was gonna meet him there again.” And when Jungkook wouldn’t say anything, you knew he thought your attempt was stupid. “He told me his friends drag him to parties a lot, alright?” you explained. “I just- I didn’t have anything else to go off on since you know, I didn’t even know what he looked-”
You paused. Because right in that moment, it dawned on you how dumb your attempt had been. Even if he had been at the party, you didn’t know what he looked like. How were you supposed to know who he was? You hadn’t realised until now. Before you had been just so desperate to find him, you had never-
“That’s so—” You expected Jungkook to mock you, laugh even, tease you for being so goddamn whipped for a guy you didn’t know the name of nor had ever seen, a guy that still classified as a stranger, you actually went to a party to look for him. “—cute.” 
You looked at him. You thought it was anything but cute. It was embarrassing, stupid, dumb.
You scoffed and shook your head. “You mean embarrassing-”
“No, I mean cute,” Jungkook said, looking at you. “It’s cute that you tried for him.” He paused. “It’s cute that you thought he was worth all of the trouble.”
And even though you clearly and very obviously did try for bathroom guy and put in a lot of effort to find him again that one time, Jungkook suggesting that was absolutely ridiculous to you. It was mortifying. You going out of your way to make an effort and for who? A guy? You scoffed and shook your head. Denial came fast.
“What?” you laughed, definitely too agitated and irritated for your own good. Jungkook bit the side of his cheek, a smile growing on his lips. “That isn’t me. I would never-”
“Okay, yeah, you definitely didn’t,” he grinned, rolling his eyes. You wondered if he was trying at all to sound sincere, or if he really just wanted to rub it into your face how stupid you had acted for a guy. 
“God, shut up,” you mumbled, burying your face in your hands. You pressed the heels of your hands into your eyes when you heard him chuckling. He let you wallow in your thoughts, and you were grateful until he broke the silence again.
“Just out of sheer curiousity though,” you already knew you weren’t going to like his question, scrunching your nose, “and definitely not because I wanna know how he got you so whipped for him with just one conversation that made you go to another party looking for him,” you rolled your eyes, “what did you guys talk about?”
“Why should I tell you?”
“Why not?” he hummed, grinning when he saw that glower on your face. “Just tell me, cabbage.”
You didn’t want to, and you probably shouldn’t either. The chance of him bringing it up relentlessly to tease you was too high. But something in you caved. You couldn’t say what it was, but you did think it might have something to do with the way he was grinning at you and the pet name and the fact that your heart hadn’t been solely you for a while now. 
When you spoke again, you didn’t look at him. “To be fair, I don’t remember much,” you mumbled. “I had a couple shots.”
“Tell me what you remember then,” Jungkook said, shifting in his seat. “I’ll take anything.”
You were too far in trying to recall everything to register his words properly, your brows pinched together. You rummaged around in your brain for the memory, sifting through the events of the last two months to get to it. It was a bit blurry, the alcohol clouding your mind.
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[You - 00:28 AM] : where the fuck are oyu guys???
[You - 00:28 AM] : im fckiing murderin your stupid ugly negligiant asses
[You - 00:28 AM] : you guys better pick up nw
And when you listened to the call ring out, beeping meeting you on the other line, none of your friends picking up the group call, you were more than tempted to throw your phone against the wall. But when you remembered that for one, you were in a shitty bathroom stall and there was no way your phone was touching any of the surfaces, and for another, none of them were worth breaking your phone over, you decided to leave them a voice message.
“Asswipes,” you barked into the receiver, your brain too cloudy to realise you were being a tad too loud and your voice was echoing on the walls, “you guys are dead, you hear me? You better run when you see me!”
With a huff, you hung up. As satisfying as it was to yell at them, that feeling dissolved quickly, overshadowed by frustration. Because that voice message changed nothing about your situation. And when you heard that snickering from the neighbouring stall, your situation worsened by another degree.
If you hadn’t already been in such a shitty mood and all of that liquid courage raging within you with nowhere to go, you probably would have just walked out and saved face, dismissed them, and gone looking for one of your friends. The emphasis was on if.
Because you were in a shitty mood and did have all of that liquid courage with nowhere to go, so you took that snicker as a personal insult, raising a brow and turning to the wall like it had wronged you.
“Did you just laugh at me?”
It was quiet then. 
(Well, as quiet as it got in a club bathroom.)
You heard someone clearing their throat, the sound of shoes squeaking against the tiles echoing on the walls.
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to intrude.”
You blinked a few times, your brain short circuited. 
That was just a man’s voice. 
“You’re a dude?”
A few seconds ticked past.
“Uh, yeah.” 
The surprise was evident in your voice. Your brows pinched together as you tried to remember if you had gone into the man’s bathroom. But no, you hadn’t. You had run into another girl at the door. This was definitely the women’s bathroom.
“Why are you here?” you asked, suspicion lacing your voice.
“What? A guy can’t pee?”
“Are you peeing right now?” you exclaimed, alarmed that you were participating in something you didn’t want to be. “Dude-”
“I- what? No! I’m talking to you, am I not?” he hissed, exasperated, and if he hadn’t sounded as upset as he did, you wouldn’t have believed him.
You hummed, scrunching your nose. “You better not be peeing.”
Another snort from the other side.
You rolled your eyes, deciding your conversation with that stranger was done now. You had other things to focus on, namely if one of your friends had answered. And when you checked your phone and saw no notifications aside from CandyCrush informing you of their ongoing sale that you shouldn’t miss for your life!!, you were tempted to call them up again and curse at them. But with the knowledge that someone was right next door, you resisted the urge. 
You sighed and put your phone away. You weren’t even disappointed. You didn’t think they had responded, your gut telling you that you weren’t going to hear from your friends for a while. And with that knowledge—even though you definitely shouldn’t because it was gross and you were in a goddamn club bathroom and you didn’t even want to think about what people had done in here—you slid down the wall and sat down.
God, you were miserable.
And he only added to your misery, like salt to a wound.
“Did you just sit down on the floor?”
There was disgust and judgment in his voice.
“Dude, shut up, you’re in the women’s bathroom,” you bit back, taking everything definitely a little too personal. Alcohol could make you sensitive.
“Wait,” his shoes squeaked against the tiles again, and you could almost picture the look of horror on his face, well, actually no, you couldn’t because you were talking to a wall right now- anyway. “Is this the women’s bathroom?”
You snorted, glad to know you weren’t the only one unsure. “Yeah, I think so.”
“Oh, shit,” he cursed quietly on the other side, and you almost couldn’t hear it. “I hadn’t-”
You snorted again, the panic evident in his voice. “So you’re not a creep.”
“You think I’m a creep?” 
“Well, not anymore. A creep doesn’t react like that,” you told him. “You’re good.”
“Well, that’s… assuring.”
You laughed, shaking your head. You blinked a couple of times, your vision blurry and fuzzy. Through the crack under the wall, you could see his shoes, well, actually boots- combat boots to be exact. They looked like the kind your angsty teenage self would have loved. (Not that you would have ever gone out with them if you had had a pair, too scared to wear them out because they just drew too much attention and you had gotten too comfortable with your Reebok sneakers. Still, you would have died to get your hands on a pair.)
They were exactly what you had wanted then, and still secretly do actually; black, chunky, ankle high, a thick sole and heel, matching big laces, and intricate detailing. You probably would have complimented him on them, told him how pretty they were, especially paired with the black jeans he was wearing, if your brain hadn’t latched onto the fact that this dumbass was also, in fact, sitting. Just like you.
“You’re sitting,” you stated, a smudge of upset colouring your voice. “You’re sitting too!”
You scoffed. “You don’t get to judge me for sitting if you’re sitting too!” 
“I’m sad, alright? I get to sit-”
“Dude, we’ve both chosen to lock ourselves in a bathroom stall. Obviously, we’re sad,” you laughed, shaking your head at his poor defence. 
“Fine, so I judged you.” You could hear him rolling his eyes at you. “But I do have my reasons for being here.”
You raised your brows. “Do you now?”
“You sound very judgemental too for someone who’s in the same situation as me,” he argued, and you scrunched your nose, disliking it that he was pointing it out to you. You were aware already.
“Well, I’ve got my reasons too.”
“Do you now?” he parrotted and you wished you could kick him for it. What a creative insult. “What’s your great reason for being here?”
You let your head fall back, eyes falling shut. “My friends dipped on me. Left me to fend on my own.”
“Is that why you were threatening murder?”
You clicked your tongue. “Eavesdropping is rude, you know?” 
“You were practically yelling.”
You opened your mouth, but closed it again soon after. You couldn’t think of any kind of response, no clever retort sitting on your tongue. It made you scrunch your nose. You had just lost.
“Why are you here now?” you asked, changing the topic, and when he laughed, you knew he was very aware of what you were doing now.
“No comeback, huh?” he teased, and you could practically see the way he was raising his brow and grinning like an idiot. You pressed your mouth into a thin line.
“Just tell me why you’re here. I told you why. It’s your turn,” you said, hating that you couldn’t think of anything to say except this.
“You sure you wanna know?” he asked, and you frowned.
“Just tell me.”
“So,” he began, pausing for drama, “it might be my…”
You raised a brow when he didn’t continue, waiting and waiting for him to finish his sentence. “Yes?”
“It might be my… birthday.”
He made it sound more like a question than a statement. You blinked once, twice, three times.
“Oh.” Your brain was wiped blank for a second before you realized that hadn’t been the appropriate response. “Wait, shit, happy birthday then.” 
There was a quiet chuckle. “Thank you.”
Your face quickly morphed into a frown though when you realised just how weird it actually was for him, the birthday person, to be sitting with you here on the bathroom floor while a whole party, a party for him, was going on right next door. And as if he could read your mind, he spoke up.
“I don’t like parties.” He paused. “I’m only here because my friends forced me to go. They always do that.”
You nodded. “I’m guessing they are huge party goers?”
“They live for it,” he chuckled, and you could practically hear him shaking his head. “If there’s a party and someone is dancing on the table, it’s one of my friends. I’m the guy sitting in the corner, trying to hide behind my drink.”
You laughed. You knew exactly what he was talking about in a way. Jimin and Hoseok sometimes got… wild too. Jisoo as well. If there was good music and cheap booze, nothing could stop those three. More times than not, Chaeyoung and you had to run around and collect them and chain them to yourselves like literal children on the loose.
“So I’m not gonna find you locked in the women’s bathroom. Noted-”
“Can you stop?” he whined, sighing. “You’re making it sound like I deliberately walked into the women’s bathroom.”
“Didn’t you?”
“I’m no creep!” 
And when you saw him shift under the gap, almost like he wanted to physically defend himself from your accusations, you laughed. You placed your hand in front of your mouth, trying to muffle the sound, but it was futile. He tried scoffing, but it quickly morphed into a laugh. Your laughter infecting him.
“I also have another reason,” he mumbled, and you raised your brow, biting your lip to stop your grin from coming through too much in your voice.
“Do you?” 
“My ex is here,” he shot back, and you stilled. That was a great reason to lock yourself in the bathroom.
“Well, actually she isn’t my ex,” he sighed, and just from that, you knew their relationship was complicated. “We never officially dated. We just hooked up for a while, but, well, she’s been throwing herself at me lately and trying to-”
You snorted, “Oh, no! Someone is trying to date you! Poor you!”
He didn’t say anything for a moment.
“Literally, shut up.”
It was the way he said it, the pout so evident in his voice. You cracked up.
“You’re really mean. Has anyone ever told you that?”
“I was just kidding,” you grinned, waiting for a beat before going on. “I’m sorry your ex is throwing herself at you.”
And you genuinely meant that. Your sympathy wasn’t made up, and he could hear that, you thought so at least.
“Also, it’s not even like that.” You stayed silent, letting him talk. “She… doesn’t even want to actually date me. She’s just mad I ended things with her. It’s literally been like two years.”
You raised your brows. Two years, and he still had to deal with her. Damn. 
“Exes suck. I’m sorry.”
He laughed. “They fucking do.”
You thought of your own ex, Jaehwa. You couldn’t imagine seeing him again after all this time. You highly doubted you could handle it, his image bringing back all of the bad memories. You would definitely lock yourself in the bathroom too if you saw him, bolt at his sight for sure. Shuddering, you scrubbed him out of your mind. 
“God, I don’t know what to do,” he mumbled, and the frustration was evident in his voice. You hummed, not quite knowing what to say. 
“You know what you should do?” you started, speaking only to not sit in silence. You should have stayed silent. “You should date another girl to get her off your back.”
He didn’t say anything for a moment.
“Wow, thanks,” he began, and you thought he was being genuine, not hearing the irony in his voice. “That’s such a good idea! I’m definitely gonna do that now!”
It didn’t click with you until a few seconds later, his words ringing in your mind.
“Hey! I- You-”
You deflated. You didn’t know what to say. Because, well, he wasn’t wrong. It was a horrible idea. Dating someone just for the sole reason to get an ex off your back? That was awfully cruel. But still, your advice was meant well!
“You can’t even defend yourself,” he laughed, and you scowled, scrunching your nose. 
“Shut up. I was trying to be helpful,” you hissed. “Plus I’m kinda tipsy, so it’s not like I’m thinking straight.”
“That’s no excuse,” he laughed, and you rolled your eyes, scrunching your face. “Also, I want a serious relationship. I don’t wanna do any of that messing around for shits and giggles anymore.”
You raised a brow. “Someone’s desperate for a relationship, huh?”
And rather than be offended, he laughed. It made you smile, the sound of his laughter. It was beautiful.
“Yeah, I think so. Probably.” He paused. “I think I just wanna find someone to connect with. Someone that likes me for… me.”
You opened your mouth before closing it again, not expecting such a serious and genuine answer from him. It was weird how your conversation toed the line between you just insulting each other and actually being honest and open the entire time. There really was no in between.
“You should date me then. I’m a great girlfriend,” you joked, expecting him to laugh with you. But when he wouldn’t respond, you froze. “I was just-”
“What’s your name?”
“I don’t know your name.”  
You stilled, blinking several times.
He didn’t know your name, and you didn’t know his name. You hadn’t introduced yourselves this entire time. You hadn’t even noticed.
“Oh, shit,” you blurted out, a smile forming on your lips. “Fuck, we really haven’t-”
You couldn’t finish your sentence, shaking your head at yourself.
“Well, tell me now,” he urged, and you could hear the grin on his lips. “What’s your name? If you want to date, I gotta know your name first.” 
You rolled your eyes. “I was just joking, you know?”
And when he gasped loudly, you could kick him again. God, the drama. “You were joking? I was just about to propose to you!”
You snorted. “You don’t even know my name-”
“Which is why you should tell me,” he quipped back, and you hated the grin that spread on your lips. He was stupid. “How else are we gonna date slash get married-”
“Let’s just not do names.”
That shut him up for a second, your suggestion clearly throwing him off. But he was quick to jump in and go along with it.
“Right, yeah, I’m just gonna date you and just never know your name,” he laughed. “I’m just gonna call you some stupid nickname the entire time.”
You thought about it, shrugging. “Sounds good to me. Let’s date and not know each other’s name. Where’s the fun in dating when you know my name?”
There was a beat of silence before you heard him cracking up on the other side, and you knew he was going to play along with you.
“Right, yeah, you’re right. Names are totally overrated these days.“
“See, this is why I’m dating you,” you said. “Because you just get it.”
“Of course, I do. I can read your mind, babe,” he smiled, and you cringed, shuddering at the pet name. But before you could tell him not to call you that, he went on, “So, no names.”
“No names,” you confirmed. “Also, no faces.”
“Right yes, no faces,” he quickly agreed with you. “Because obviously, knowing how the person looks like you’re dating that’s just unnecessary. I mean if it’s meant to be I’ll find you either way, right?”
“Exactly,” you hummed. “If you don’t find me among the millions of people, can you even call it love?”
There was a stupid grin on your lips, and you were sure there was one on his too.
You never imagined it, but sitting on the dirty and sticky (you refused to think about this too much) bathroom floor, literally locked away from the party, talking to a stranger whose shoes were the only thing you could see and whose name nor face you knew, it was fun.
“I’m guessing no numbers either, right?” he asked, breaking the silence. And even with his voice much lower, you could still hear the smile on his face. 
“Obviously not-”
The sound of the door opening interrupted you. You looked up. It wasn’t yours. It was the one outside.
“Hey, Y/N?”
You froze. And even though there was a wall between you, you could feel his gaze on you right now. You sighed, your head hanging low. As much as you didn’t want to respond, you knew you had to. So much for no names.
“... yeah?” you called back, slowly getting up. 
This had to end at one point, you knew. You had just thought it wouldn’t be just now, not right when you were getting along so well. You wished Chaeyoung hadn’t said your name, or come in at all.
“Are you- did you lock yourself in the bathroom?”
You rolled your eyes, dusting yourself off before opening the door. Chaeyoung stared at you, and you waved her off. Because there was definitely a part of you that was, well, pissed off at her. But you knew you couldn’t be mad at her. So you swallowed that frustration, exhaling it in a long sigh.
“You guys dipped. What was I supposed to do?”
Chaeyoung frowned. “Uh, text us? Call? Use your mobile device that you own to-”
“I did,” you interrupted, glaring at her because you weren’t stupid. You were just introverted and loathed attention. But your gaze softened once you looked in the mirror, eyes travelling to the stall next to yours. He wasn’t coming out- obviously, he wasn’t. He was in a women’s bathroom. 
Chaeyoung followed your gaze. “What are you looking at? Also, who were you just talking to-”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about. You must be drunk,” you quickly told her, shaking your head. “Do you know where the others are?”
“Uh—” She was still confused, glancing between the door and you, convinced that she had heard your voice when she had come in. But when you raised a brow, she snapped out of it. “—right, yeah, I know. I was supposed to get you actually. Jimin has been looking for you.”
You hummed and nodded, staying silent for a moment. It was weird. There was a genuine part of you that was sad about the development of this. You would have liked to continue the conversation with him, maybe get to a point where you would realise how stupid it was of you that you weren’t exchanging any information. But in your tipsy state and with Chaeyoung staring at you, awaiting your response, you failed to realise just how much you were going to regret this,
“Okay, let’s go then.”
(It wasn’t until the morning that it hit you that yes, you would like to know who he was. He who could make you laugh so much, who made sitting on the bathroom floor not seem as pathetic and sad as it was.
You would have liked to know who he was that could make dating sound so strangely appealing and fun.)
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“He seems nice,” Jungkook hummed once you finished talking. You nodded, gaze stuck in the distance, your features soft from all of the remembering. You had never enjoyed talking to a stranger more than that night two months ago.
“He does,” you mumbled, letting your thoughts wander.
“Do you regret it? Not asking for his name, I mean. Or, you know, his number.” Jungkook asked, fiddling with his keys. You had pulled up to your building halfway through your story and now you were just sitting in the car. If you had just looked at him, you would have noted the way he was avoiding your gaze. But you missed it, too busy thinking about his question. 
It took you a moment to come up with an answer.
“I think part of me does and part of me doesn't.” You were speaking slowly, quietly. “It depends on the day. I did regret it the morning after, but- I don’t think I do anymore really. I think what made it so great is that element of mystery, you know? There was something exciting about not knowing who he is.” You shrugged. “Or maybe I’m just telling myself that, so I don’t feel bad. Who knows?”
Jungkook hummed, his mouth opening before closing again. There were words on his tongue. He couldn’t bring himself to say them. Not that there was time for him to find the courage anyway because you clapped your hands together, effectively ending the conversation.
“Anyway, the past is the past. Doesn’t matter anymore. I can’t change anything anyway, or meet him somehow even if I wanted to,” you said, shrugging, thinking for a moment.
“It’s getting late.” You unclipped the seat belt. “So I really should get going. Thanks for picking me up again.”
For a second, Jungkook had this weird look on his face, something swimming in his eyes. But when you opened the car door, he snapped out of it, nodding, his lips pressing into a line.
“Right, yeah, it’s late,” he mumbled, the stars dotting the night sky, the moon hanging high above. You jumped out and turned towards him, standing there. In the moonlight, he could precisely see the slope of your nose and cheeks and that little mole on your nose that had appeared one day when you were thirteen and that acne scar that was still left over from your period last month. 
And as he eyed you, getting lost in you, you seized the chance to do the same. He was perfect, you realised, so much so it hurt. Everything from that scar on his cheek you had only recently noticed and heard the story of to those goddamn doe eyes of his that he always looked at you with, so big you thought you could see the world and the universe in them. It was all perfect. 
But your gaze wandered further—and you didn’t know why because you never could quite take your eyes off his face—until you reached his shoes.
Black leather ankle boots.
No laces.
No thick soles or heels. 
No intricate detailing.
And for some reason, your heart sank in your chest.
For some reason, your stupid brain had thought that Jungkook might be-
“Goodnight, cabbage,” he whispered and you snapped your gaze back to him, a smile quickly finding your lips. You looked at him, blinking several times. 
He was definitely not him.
Jungkook definitely wasn’t bathroom guy. 
There was nothing tying you to him, no fate or destiny. There was nothing grand about Jungkook and you. All of this was nothing more than the making of a stupid bet he was hellbent on winning and money you desperately needed. This was going to end soon enough. He and you were never going to turn into anything, you were sure. It was fun; going out for dinner, kissing, holding hands, sleeping with one another. But that was all your “relationship” was. Fun. There was nothing else to, even if your heart might be beating faster and harder whenever you were around him.
You looked at him, a small smile on your lips. 
“Goodnight, Jeon.”
You felt for the string of the parachute.
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→ thanks for reading !! if you have any thoughts, id love to hear it!
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431 notes · View notes
baekhvun · 5 months ago
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literal personification of the ‘🤷‍♂️’emoji ⇢ for @imyourhobiii
833 notes · View notes
moon-write · 4 months ago
his entire world.
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summary: an especially fussy dae makes it difficult for you to enjoy your friends’ wedding pairing: min yoongi x reader genre: dad!bts, fluff rating: g word count: 1.3k tags/warnings: crying baby, mentions breast milk
song inspo: the night we met - lord huron
a/n: for anon, ah I loved writing this request. Dad yoongi is probably my favorite to write for 🤫 I changed it to where reader is the one who gets spilled on, I felt it showcased Yoongi more that way. I really hope you like it! Also need to dedicate this to @hyungieyoongi because she’s a boss & working so hard. I hope this dad!yoongi fluff can be a bit of an escape for you bestie.
dad au series: a serendipitous life
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Everything was perfect. A blue sky, a balmy breeze, an intimate setting with friends and family. You were beaming as you watched two of your closest friends recite their vows to one another.
Well, almost perfect.
If not for your fussy one-year-old who hadn’t stopped whining since the ceremony began. You and Yoongi played hot potato with Dae, it only worked for a few minutes before your son was squirming again.
Yoongi patted his son’s back, gently shushing him. “He didn’t nap on the drive here,” you whispered while the groom said his part, “so his sleep schedule is off, that’s probably-”
A blood-curdling scream bellows out of your baby, causing those around you to jump. You feel your face heat up, ripping Dae from Yoongi’s arms, passing through with whispered apologies with a crying Dae. Before Yoongi could offer to take him, knowing you would want to see your friends end this sweet moment with a kiss, you were gone in a flash.
“I know, baby,” you groaned once secured in a secluded area, bouncing your son in your arms. He cried from his deepest depths, rubbing his face on your shoulder. In your haste to escape to avoid disturbing the wedding any further, you forgot to ask for the keys to the car where you hoped to soothe your son to sleep. Claps and cheers could be heard minutes later, likely your friends were announced married followed by a kiss. Hopefully, your husband will remember to take pictures for you.
Yoongi sought after you once the ceremony let out, finding you pouting beneath a tree. He could hear Dae whimpering, taking him back in his arms but not before kissing your forehead; “I missed the best part,” you whined, on the verge of tears yourself. With a breathy chuckle and sympathetic smile, Yoongi just hands you his phone and you repay him with a grateful kiss. The video was great, maybe it was your tired baby that had you feeling sorry for yourself-you just wanted to see your friends seal their vows with a kiss in person.
“The drive to the reception area is about 20 minutes,” Yoongi begins to reason, wiping Dae’s tear-stained cheeks in the process, “maybe he’s tired himself out enough to knock out on the way there.”
You rub Dae’s healthy head of wavy locks while he hiccupped the last of his tears away, “I love you son, but please, for the love of God, sleep for mommy,” you coo making your husband laugh.
Call it wishful thinking? A request fallen on deaf ears?
Whatever it was, a peaceful baby was not on your side. Rather, you watched the table you and your family were sitting at dwindle the longer Dae cried. No, he wasn’t fussing anymore. He wasn’t whining. He was screaming in short bursts.
“Honey,” Yoongi was calm, he was always calm and it drove you crazy sometimes, “I don’t think he wants his bottle.”
“I can see that,” you say while making another attempt to press the rubber tip against Dae’s pouted lips, “but I can’t feed him in this dress, I’d have to take it off completely!”
Frustrated. You were frustrated.
Yoongi sighs, rubbing his hand against your shoulder, “let me try-”
Dae challenges the volume between a talking crowd and dinner music, screeching into the air and knocking the bottle clear out of your hand. Milk squirts out of the tip and all over the top part of your emerald green dress, catching the ends of your hair. Yoongi clams his lips together and you can see his cheeks turn pink, “I swear Yoongi if you laugh-”
“Go-” Yoongi takes your son, holding his tiny battering hands into his large one, “I’ll take care of him, just go clean up then find your friends.”
“I’m not leaving-”
“Go enjoy yourself, sweetheart. I’ve got this,” your husband is practically pushing you out of your seat. You get up, heading straight for the bathroom and breathing a breath of relief while tears flood your eyes.
Of all people, your husband knows best. Yoongi understands your frustrations and even more, he knows your limits. Being first-time parents, the challenges felt insurmountable at times. Given a difficult pregnancy, sometimes it felt like life wasn’t fair ever. You both love your son, of course, you love your son. But there were days, like today at your friends’ wedding, that Dae seemed to know when to push your buttons a little harder.
Yoongi continued in a calm timbre, kissing Dae’s hand that was pushing against his cheek while he cried in his father’s arms. He caught the sorry glance from a few of the members as he passed through the dining area, pinching a smile, “you are making us look great, son.”
Dae cries. He pushes against Yoongi’s chest, his neck, and his chin. He wails to the point his cheeks are bright red and prickled with hot tears. Yoongi doesn’t let up, holding his son and even setting him on the ground, keeping his large hands around his son’s stomach. Just let it out, Yoongi thinks to himself. He blinks slowly, using his fingers to clear Dae’s tears now and then.
“You’re sleepy,” he manages to chuckle when Dae starts to soothe beneath his dad’s touch, “stop fighting me.” Dae breathes in short bursts, allowing Yoongi to wipe his nose properly this time. Yoongi grimaces, not having a tissue on him or the baby bag, he wipes the remnants of his son’s tears on the inside of his suit jacket. No one would ever look there.
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An hour or so passes when you search for your husband and Dae. This time, you have a smile on your face despite the faint stain of breast milk splattered across your dress. You were able to spend time with the bride and groom and a few friends (and a couple of glasses of champagne)all thanks to your husband. The dancing had already started, to which you got a few in before missing your baby. Who were you kidding, you missed him the entire time but the temporary separation was nice.
Coming back from the restroom after freshening up, a mellow song was now playing beneath the white canopy. Dusk rolled in and the sky was darkening. The string lights were on and almost everyone was out of their seats, slow dancing on the dance floor. Your search for Yoongi and Dae wasn’t long-you had to bite your lip when you finally spotted them.
A few more moments alone wouldn’t hurt. You stand next to a post, holding your hands together and watching the two greatest loves of your life. Dae was asleep in your husband’s arms while Yoongi moved slowly, swaying from one foot to the other. Back and forth back and forth. Yoongi smiles into a kiss, pressing his thin lips against Dae’s head. Taking his pointer finger to rub against your son’s cheek. You watched his mo