let it snow | kth
part of the once upon a holiday collab with @underthejoon @fantasybangtan @kpopfanfictrash @lamourche @hobidreams and @junghelioseok!
summary⇢ it all started by accident, but it continues by choice—even before you began sleeping together, things with your friend taehyung have always been comfortable and easy. simple, and this new arrangement between you is certainly no exception to that rule. well...that's definitely what you thought before a major snowstorm traps the two of you in his apartment over the holidays. now? now, it is quickly becoming apparent that things are a bit more complicated than you realized.
word count⇢ 18.8k 😩🤦🏽♀️
genre⇢ smut | fluff | fwb!au | snowed in!au
warnings⇢ sexual content, oral (m+f receiving), unprotected sex, fingering, a decent amount of netflix and chilling because they’re stuck in the house and horny, a lot of domesticity because mmm, that’s that good stuff 😌, angst, pininggggg
a/n⇢ it’s finally here!! 🙌🏾 i really procrastinated and let it fester until i was forced to churn 19k out in a couple weeks, huh ☠️☠️ classic me lmao. here’s to better planning in the new year! 🤣mood for this fic is this. hope you enjoy! 😊
“Didn’t you wear that sweater last year?” Seokjin asks, though he already knows the answer. Really, the only reason he’s asking you is to give himself room to segue into the topic of your perceived lack of holiday cheer.
“Yup! And I’m gonna wear it next year, too,” you reply breezily, forever unbothered by the judgmental scrunch of his nose. You gesture down the length of your chest, where a woven Christmas tree with real flashing Christmas lights proudly sits beneath the words Get Lit. “This fucker cost sixty-nine ninety-five and I plan on getting my money’s worth.”
“How do you think you’re ever going to win our annual ugly sweater contest if you just keep recycling the same one?” Jin points out as he puts his final touches on a rather beautiful charcuterie board. As the member of your friend group who thrives off of playing the gracious host, he would usually also be dumping cheap vodka down someone’s throat. But due to your various schedules, your friend group has been forced to have your annual get-together a bit too late for those kind of shenanigans this year. Road trips and train rides and being squished on airplanes can already be a bit of a headache, but adding navigating the holiday rush with a raging hangover? Yeah…everyone is smartly playing it safe tonight. So wine and cheese it is—though that doesn’t bother you one bit. If it were socially acceptable and wouldn’t give you scurvy, you would live off that shit.
Seokjin’s own sweater this year is delightfully horrendous, a printed on mockery of a suit and bowtie. The visually-jarring combination of olive green and a murky red—all against a repulsive santa hat print—definitely makes him a solid contender for this year’s winner.
Still, that makes you no less satisfied with your own choice of attire. “You really think I’m gonna buy a new one every year when I only wear them once?” you ask incredulously, successfully swiping a grape before he can swat your hand away. “Hey, at least I bothered to change the batteries in this thing! That’s a lot of effort for a sweater.”
“You’re no fun,” he pouts, lifting the tray to take to the others.
You easily trail after him into the living room, sipping on the mulled wine he had poured for you before you had even slipped your shoes off. God, you loved when Seokjin hosted parties. “You weren’t saying that that time I drank Yoongi under the table.”
“That’s not hard to do. Yoongi has two good drinks and goes to bed.”
“Two drinks of hard liquor, so that’s irrelevant! I still drank more. And you’re conveniently forgetting that it was some sort of fancy scotch and it was icky, so I should be awarded bonus fun points.”
Yoongi himself, casually splayed across the sofa, looks up at the sound his name, but remains entirely nonplussed. His sweater has a big picture of that one internet cat making a face at vegetables that is always getting yelled at in memes by one of those rich white reality tv housewives. The hilarity of it almost makes you regret your choice not to get a new sweater this year. Almost. “You may have drank more,” he drawls, “but I seem to recall you being the one under the table at the end of the night.”
You internally wince at the memory—or, to be more accurate, the lack of—as you promptly make yourself comfortable between him and Taehyung, who is snickering at you. Tae had been the one to pull you from under said table, to take you home. “My point still stands.”
“That’s because you were pretty wasted before the scotch,” Jimin pipes up.
“Most people with common sense have to be wasted to drink scotch,” you quip, grinning pointedly at Yoongi. As expected, he doesn’t take the bait—simply gives you a flat stare and takes a sip from his own wine mug. It takes a lot to rile up your dark-haired friend, and so you often amuse yourself by teasing him to see if you can.
Jimin laughs. He’s curled up in an opposite armchair, his girlfriend Nia seated comfortably on his lap. Normally, you would find this blatant sort of PDA annoying, but these two are adorable, so you let it slide, simply happy that your friend has found someone who makes him happy. Nia has been a bizarrely seamless addition to your little group—enough so that Jimin felt comfortable including her in your holiday tradition of exchanging gifts. So unless they start to get handsy, you refuse to make a big deal out of it and be as big of a Scrooge as Seokjin claims you are.
You feel Taehyung shift, and when you turn, he is already looking at you, amusement dancing across his features. “Nice sweater,” he says.
“Thanks. I put a lot of thought into it.” You bite the inside of your lip to dampen your own smile. “Yours is pretty snazzy yourself.”
The sweater in question is printed with a complicated Where’s Waldo illustration, and you can’t help but run a finger across the material of his arm in search of the striped character.
“Cold,” Tae says, and when you respond by trailing your finger over to his chest, where a suspiciously-large group of santas are congregated, you feel his body tense a bit in response. “Warmer.”
“Check his nipples,” Hoseok yells from across the room. You roll your eyes good-naturedly, ignoring the way Jimin bursts into laughter at the suggestion. Taehyung flicks an eyebrow in challenge.
“Or the armpit,” Namjoon offers helpfully. “If I were hiding on a sweater, I’d pick an armpit.”
“Hmmm, that’s a fair point. Up!” you command, and Taehyung laughs and lifts his arms without complaint, allowing you to properly inspect his armpits for the elusive character. When it becomes clear that you aren’t going to find what you’re looking for there, you take another sip of your wine and dutifully turn your attention back to his chest, intending to search in earnest.
But before you can, the speakers next to the couch spring to life, startling you a bit. Despite your initial confusion, you slowly start to recognize the familiar tune of Frosty the Snowman, jumbled over an EDM beat. It’s loud and extra and toeing the edge annoying, and your head immediately snaps to Jungkook, who declared himself the DJ of the party years ago and has stubbornly refused to give up the position ever since. He grins at you, clear mischief in his eyes, and you know then that he’s only playing the abomination to annoy the living shit out of everyone.
Though Seokjin’s busy being a good host and passing out cups of spiked eggnog, you can see how well Jungkook’s plan is working by the flush spreading up his neck. “I thought I told you to play Mariah,” he huffs over the racket as he hands Nia hers.
Jungkook looks nonchalantly at his phone, where he’s projecting his supposedly carefully curated playlist via bluetooth. “She’s on here.”
“What about Dean Martin?” Taehyung asks. “You know, the classics? Or literally anything else.”
You snort. Taehyung’s music taste has been known to sometimes overlap with Jungkook’s, so for him to be so visibly disgusted, you know it’s bad. “What about that one chipmunk song?” you suggest.
Jungkook winks at you, shoots you some finger guns. “Already got you, boo.”
“Oh god,” you groan, glaring at Yoongi when he starts snickering at you. “I was totally kidding.”
“Well, I wasn’t!” Jungkook says cheerfully. He has to yell a little bit to be heard over the booming bass. “When it comes to Christmas bops, I never kid.”
You groan louder. “Jungkookie. Please!”
“I don’t know—I kinda like it,” Alexa pipes up, and you have to put forth actual effort to stop your eyes from rolling to the back of your head. Alexa is Hoseok’s newest fling, and while Nia slots into your group dynamic easily, Alexa, in your opinion, is a bit of an airhead. She’s pretty, but you would bet actual money that she’s the type to think Chicken of the Sea is chicken—and you’re pretty sure she’s not even filming for a reality show, so she truly has no excuse. But that seems to be Hobi’s type—someone who is easy on the eyes and won’t try to force him to commit. To be honest, you’re pretty surprised that she’s lasted long enough to make it to your friend group’s borderline-sacred holiday get-together, but you’re even more surprised that Hobi actually bothered to bring her.
“Thank you, Alexa,” Jungkook says pointedly, and frankly he probably has a better chance at annoying Yoongi tonight than you do. “You have great taste.”
You must be making some sort of face, because Namjoon takes one look at you and sucks his lips into a straight line, just like he always does when he’s trying not to laugh inappropriately at something.
“At least turn it down a little,” Seokjin sighs. “You already made my neighbors file a noise complaint on me on Halloween. I’m not trying to get another one.”
“Hey, you were the one screaming on Halloween, not me.”
“Because we were watching a movie about demons! You told me we were gonna watch Air Bud!”
“To be fair,” Taehyung pipes up, “nobody watches that on Halloween. So you walked into that one.”
“You know that’s my favorite movie,” Jin protests loudly. “And for the record, Hobi screamed louder than me!”
Hoseok just shrugs. “I don’t handle the supernatural well. Especially when the supernatural are little kids. Give me old lady ghosts any day.”
Seokjin and Jungkook keep bickering, but that honestly is just a testament to how close they are. In fact, your whole little group is rather close, and it’s actually bizarre to think about how these are your closest friends, because when you stop to consider it, you’re all here, in Seokjin’s living room sipping on delightfully festive cocktails, by pure chance.
Your sophomore year of college, Yoongi, your roommate’s boyfriend, was often over your apartment. The two of you became friendly, and when they ended up breaking up, he never broke up with you. (You’ve never felt particularly bad about that, because your roommate was more of an acquaintance than anything else. You lost touch with her once the lease was up, anyway.) Namjoon and Hoseok were in the same music theory class as Yoongi, and the three of them have made music together ever since. Seokjin used to be Namjoon’s favorite bartender at his favorite bar. Jimin frequented the same dance class as Hoseok. Taehyung is Jimin’s best friend from childhood. Tae befriended Jungkook over some online game he was obsessed with at the time, and when they realized they lived in the same general area, he made the—in your opinion—stupid decision to meet up with him. (It all turned out for the best, of course. Because that’s the kind of luck Taehyung has—he draws people to him without trying, his good energy attracting only more good energy.)
And that’s exactly how you would describe this friend group the universe allowed you to stumble into—good energy. Good vibes. Well, that was certainly how you would describe it when Jungkook wasn’t blasting a screamo version of Silent Night. Which he was. Right. Now.
“Hey,” Namjoon yells over the ruckus, leaning closer to Tae to be heard better. “Where’s Jisoo? Did she not want to come?”
One breath, two. Something in the universe shifts, just slightly.
“Jisoo?” you repeat. Your brain shuffles through any logical possibilities before confusedly settling on the pretty girl Hobi had set Taehyung up with months and months ago. The pretty girl he had gone on a single date with and then never mentioned to you again.
“She flew home last week.” Tae looks uncomfortable. Your stomach twists. “And hyung, I told you it’s not like that.”
One date and he had never mentioned her again, so you had reasonably assumed that had been the end of it. But clearly, from the way Namjoon’s brows furrow in confusion, from the way Taehyung so carefully does not look at you, this is not the case. Clearly, he just never mentioned her to you.
There is an awkward silence in your corner of the room, because it’s blatantly obvious that you’ve been left in the dark on this and now, by accident, you’re suddenly not.
Sensing the weird energy, Namjoon reaches for a cookie shaped like a candy cane and stuffs it in his mouth, quiet.
You can feel Yoongi’s eyes boring through your skin, but you ignore him, refusing to look in his direction. You smile instead, though it feels off around the edges. You hope it doesn’t look that way too. “Huh. Congrats. I didn’t realize you were still seeing her—you never mentioned it.”
Taehyung rubs the back of his neck. “It’s not really serious.”
“Three months is serious enough,” you reply airily. Three months since Hoseok set them up. Four since— You look away, finishing the last dregs of your wine. “Sorry she couldn’t make it.”
Tae’s lips part, but whatever he has to say never comes to fruition. Seokjin claps his hands and yells for Jungkook to turn the music down so you can get the festivities started.
Clearing your throat, you use the distraction to stand up and make your way back into the kitchen, where the mulled wine is still being warmed by a crockpot. You have a flight to catch in the morning, but you figure one more glass can’t hurt.
When you come back, you find that Jungkook has taken your spot, and you also find that you’re perfectly fine with that. You sit in the chair next to Jimin and Nia instead, keeping your gaze solidly on Seokjin as he starts reminding everyone of the rules for your ugly sweater contest—something your little group takes rather seriously. Point categories include ugliness, creativity, hilarity, and raunchiness, with bonus points to be given for any good puns.
One by one, you each stand so your choice of attire can be properly judged. You miss, you drink declares Hoseok’s sweater, the mini tennis balls stuck to the giant velcro target in the center a clear invitation for someone to give the game a go. Namjoon’s sweater has a visibly judgmental santa between the words I Saw That, You Nasty. Jungkook’s has Santa enthusiastically riding a shark like a horse. Jimin’s is modeled after a Christmas tree, actual green tinsel elegantly latticed throughout and supplemented with a number of small, strategically-placed Christmas ornaments. Nia’s is clearly homemade, and clearly an eyesore, tinsel and felt letters stapled to the fabric. Feel the Joy, it says, a pair of gloves strategically-pinned over her breasts.
All excellent, excellent contenders. Your friends all start to argue, everyone making their case for who should be crowned this year’s winner. And, normally, you would be right in the thick of it. But instead, tonight you just sip your wine, subdued.
“I like this one,” Alexa pipes up, pointing at Jimin. “It’s cute.”
“It’s not supposed to be cute. It’s supposed to be ugly!” Seokjin insists, an edge of annoyance in his tone. And you don’t blame him—Alexa didn’t even bother to wear her own sweater because it was ugly. Why is she allowed to vote anyway? Why is she even here?
“Tinsel is ugly,” Jimin whines.
Yoongi shakes his head with a scoff. “Yours isn’t. It’s delightful.”
“Why is no one taking into consideration that my sweater has a shark on it,” Jungkook cuts in.
Distracted, you pitch in your opinion when prompted and laugh when it seems you should. In the end, after much bickering and multiple rounds of voting, Nia is declared the winner. She lifts her eggnog in victory and Jimin grins wide, as proud of her accomplishment as if it were his own. (Namjoon had argued that her sweater was more horny than ugly, but Seokjin had to begrudgingly admit that it was both.)
Hoseok, never a sore loser, starts hooting in support, which only sets off Jungkook, and then, like dominoes, everyone else. You cheer too, laughing. Despite everything, so happy to be here, in this room, with people who entered your life by chance and stayed by choice. You’re filled with such affection that you can’t help but grin when Jungkook promptly plays The Chipmunk Song, just for you.
“I’ll be right back,” you tell no one in particular, still laughing, still warm inside. The wine has you a bit buzzed, but mostly you just feel like your bladder is about to tap out on you, so you make your way to the restroom before it does.
Through the kitchen, down the hall, on the left. You’ve been to Seokjin’s place often enough that your feet take the right path without much thought, your mind blessedly not settling on anything in particular as you do your business and wash your hands. Reentering the hallway has you blinking away the lingering imprint of florescent lights as your eyes adjust to the shadows. You jump a little when one of them moves unexpectedly.
“Sorry.” It’s Taehyung. You can see him a bit better now, can see the tall shape of him, the broadness of his shoulders, the muddled pattern of his sweater when he moves a little closer to you. Can make out the line of his jaw, the set of his gaze.
“No problem,” you say, stepping to the side a bit so you both have room to pass each other. You move to leave, but right as your arms brush, he speaks again.
“It’s really not like that,” he murmurs.
You pause. Don’t turn, just stare at the carpet and focus on keeping your feelings in. On not reacting. Because he would tell you, right? He promised he would tell you.
He promised—but he has been keeping this from you.
“…Okay,” you say carefully, still not looking up. He said it isn’t serious. If it isn’t serious, it’s truly none of your business. It doesn’t matter. You swallow. You don’t look up.
There is a long pause, the charged silence cut by the cheerful music coming from the other room. Taehyung still hasn’t moved. Presumably, he’s in this hallway with you because he needed to pee, but he doesn’t continue towards the bathroom, his feet solidly planted in the carpet. In your peripheral vision, you can see him turn towards you, see his mouth open and close a few times. You don’t need to see anymore.
You leave him there, one quick step in front of the other, and head back to the others.
Yoongi looks up at you when you reenter, but you simply shoot him a quick smile and return to your seat next to Jimin and Nia. She’s still perched on his lap, but at some point since you left, Jimin has decided to slip his hands into the gloves attached to her chest. You shake your head, mind still too preoccupied with what just happened in the hallway to properly call him out on it.
The music changes, a sultry man crooning about how he wants to be your Santa Claus, and Namjoon’s head whips around. “Is that Keith Sweat?” he asks incredulously.
“Damn right, it is,” Jungkook grins, visibly pleased with himself.
Joon and Yoongi pull matching baffled faces at each other, Yoongi muttering about how he hadn’t realized Keith Sweat had even released a Christmas album.
Hoseok has only had a little eggnog, but his face is red anyway as he leans against the back of your chair. “Hey, is it time for gifts yet?”
The mentioning of tonight’s main event has Seokjin perking up. “It can be. We just have to wait for—oh never mind, there he is. Taehyung, it’s time for gifts!”
Tae smiles in response, reclaiming his spot on the couch next to Jungkook. His gaze drifts in your direction, but you look away before you can lock eyes.
Jimin, who is closest to the gift table, promptly displaces his girlfriend and gets up to start handing out assigned gifts. They’re all of varying sizes—while Taehyung’s is a mere envelope, Yoongi’s is large enough to fit a small appliance. Vaguely, you wonder if someone was being funny with the packaging (boxes in boxes), or if he was actually gifted a deep fryer.
One by one, you each unwrap your gifts, excitedly revealing who was whose secret santa. Hoseok gets you, and you’re pleasantly surprised to see that he remembered the exact brand of specialty chocolates you’ve been dying to try. Jin and Yoongi get each other, and to the delight of everyone in the room, it turns out they gifted each other matching tackle boxes.
“I only bought it because I noticed you looking at it,” Yoongi sighs, pouting at how everyone’s laughing.
Seokjin lets out a huff. “Yah! I was only looking at it because I saw you looking at it!”
But for all their grumbling, from what you can tell, they’re both happy with their gifts, and will likely get a lot of use out of them together.
“What’s that?” you hear Jungkook ask curiously, and when you turn in his direction, he’s leaning over Tae, trying to make sense of the piece of paper he’d pulled out of a generic Christmas card. You swallow.
Taehyung’s eyebrows are furrowed, his lips twitching into a confused smile as he holds the paper up for the room to see. It’s a printout of an advertisement from a nearby art gallery.
“Tickets to Kim Jungwoo’s newest exhibition,” you clarify, clearing your throat when your voice comes out more stunted than you would like. “Just let me know when you want to go and I can get them for you.”
“Oh, come onnnn,” Jungkook complains with a pout. “We had a thirty dollar limit.”
“Maybe next time you shouldn’t buy your gift from the convenience store,” Jimin says, pointedly looking down at the box full of ramen he was gifted.
“Do you or do you not like spicy chicken.”
“That’s what I thought. Merry Christmas.”
“Don’t worry—my cousin works at that gallery,” you explain, “so I was able to get a discount. I know you like that artist, so when I saw their new exhibition was coming near us, I just figured maybe you would like it…”
You meet Taehyung’s eyes, and they’re so dark and expressive that you have the intense urge to look away immediately. But then he smiles, wide and bright, and now you can’t stop looking. “Holy shit, I didn’t even realize he was coming here—how did you even know I love his work?”
You tamp down a pleased smile, shrug good-naturedly. “It’s a Christmas miracle.”
“Thank you,” he says, and you can hear how much he means it. Can see it in the excitement in his eyes, in the soft way he’s looking at you. It warms you from the inside out, satisfaction and affection trickling through your veins and spreading slowly, slowly. But steadily.
“Of course,” you reply, and you’re smiling too. You can’t help it.
And then the moment is broken by the first verse of what is apparently a My Neck, My Back x Jingle Bells mashup blasting through the speakers. You all pause, disbelieving of what you’re hearing, and then Nia immediately starts cackling, almost falling out of her chair at the ridiculousness of the situation. Yoongi rubs his temples like a migraine is coming on.
“Really, Jungkook?” Seokjin groans loudly.
Jungkook starts cackling too. “Feliz Navidad, mis amigos!”
The night ends earlier than you all would like—usually, there would be at least a few more hours of chilling and drinking and shenanigans. But alas, you have a flight to catch tomorrow and you’re not the only one, so you’re all begrudgingly shuffling into the night air a little before midnight. You all thank Seokjin for his hospitality and hug each other goodbye, promising to see each other again around New Year’s, before going your separate ways.
As per usual when leaving Seokjin’s, Jimin and Taehyung walk with you—you all live in the same direction, so you have to take the same train. Nia is tipsy, her laugh loud and her arm around Jimin’s midsection. Jimin eats up the attention, an arm slung over her shoulders bringing her body flush against his.
They’re cute, you think for the umpteenth time that night, watching them from behind, their silhouettes periodically illuminated by the street lamps you pass.
The sidewalks are narrow, so Taehyung quietly walks next to you, hands in the pockets of his coat. The silence between you is strange—it’s awkward, but it’s not. It’s loaded with something, but it means nothing at all. In any case, you feel no inclination to break it, so you don’t, distractedly pulling your hat further down your head in an effort to ward off the windchill.
The train is bizarrely full at this time at night, likely the result of more and more people being out and about, getting their shopping done and enjoying the holiday season. The four of you have to stand, though this doesn’t bother you much, as you don’t have that many stops to wait. Besides, passengers tend to get off with Jimin anyway—by the time it’s your stop, you often have most of the train car to yourself.
It doesn’t take long to arrive at Jimin’s stop, and he and Nia both hug you goodbye and wish you a safe trip before leaving you and Tae alone. As you expected, the car has cleared up a bit—enough for a seat near you to become available, at least. Taehyung gestures, and you wordlessly take it, him grasping the bar above your head.
Another two stops, and the older man sitting next to you gets off. Taehyung easily slots himself into the vacated seat. He’s tall, with rather broad shoulders and long limbs, and you’ve always known this, but there’s a difference between knowing and feeling him as he folds into the compact space. His shoulder rests flush against yours; his knee bumps yours a bit every time the train takes a sharp turn on the rails.
A couple more stops and he’ll get off before you. A couple more stops, and you’ll be able to breathe and keep pretending.
You stare outside the window, simply to have somewhere to look. But despite the picturesque view of the city rushing by, you can’t help but focus on something else.
Taehyung, meeting your eyes in the reflection.
Carefully, you turn back in his direction, and yes, he’s looking right back, eyes dark in the fluorescent lighting.
“Do you want to come over?” he murmurs, deep voice somehow deeper in his effort to keep his voice down. The offer makes the slumbering beast within you stir. Your breath quickens. Your lips part.
“I have to catch a flight in the morning.” Not an acceptance, not a refusal. Simply the truth.
“I can take you to the airport.”
You already know what you want to say. Already know, even as you bite your tongue and try to think about this logically. You’re already all packed, suitcase ready and waiting next to your front door for you to simply grab it and leave. You hate packing and tend to leave it until the last second, but you also knew you were unlikely to want to do so when you came home late at night, or even the next morning, so you made sure to get it all done before you left for Seokjin’s earlier today. Taehyung will have to take you back to your place to pick it up, but it’s kind of hard to point this fact out when you suddenly notice his hand on your knee, the warmth slowly permeating your jeans and making it hard for you to think.
“…Okay,” you breathe.
“Great,” he says, fingers light, light as they tease a little further up your leg, but ultimately return to dormancy before they can start anything in public. “What time’s your flight?”
You bite your lip. “Ten.”
He hums in acknowledgment, but doesn’t move his hand.
You don’t move it either.
The first time it happened, it was completely by accident.
It had been a long, stressful week at work, and after noticing your unusual silence in the groupchat, a simple check-in text from Taehyung turned into you bitching about your grueling ordeal—which easily turned into him sounding the alarm and calling an emergency meetup.
Some of your friends had other plans, and you were quick to dismiss Tae’s deceptively frantic tone before anyone got too worried, insisting they not cancel anything for you. So it was Tae, Hoseok, and Namjoon who met you at a bar that night, one specialty cocktail easily turning into three as your best friends made sure your glass was always full. And then, since you were all in such a good mood, you kept the night going to another bar, where more alcohol and a live band had you dancing away any problems you could have had.
Hoseok finally decided he was ready to go home at 3am, and the rest of the group conceded. Which was for the best, really, because you were all stupid drunk and every bar in the city was going to close in an hour or so anyway. So you said goodbye for the night, stumbling towards your respective homes.
You and Tae briefly discussed the possibility of sharing an Uber, but neither of you really wanted to pay surge prices when you lived relatively close by. So to the train you went, your arm comfortably linked through his—partially because you couldn’t walk in a straight line, and partially because you tended to get rather…touchy the more intoxicated you got. Taehyung didn’t seem to mind, happy to let you use him for balance. Alcohol made his laughs loud and his face flushed, both particularly noticeable in the relative quiet of the night.
But no matter how drunk, Taehyung never lost his sense of chivalry. He walked on the side of the sidewalk closest to the street so you wouldn’t stumble into it (despite tripping into a couple parked cars himself), and when the two of you made it onto the nearly empty train car, he then insisted that you just come home with him, because his place was closer and he didn’t want you riding the last few stops by yourself so late at night.
You didn’t fight him, because crashing at his place wasn’t foreign to you, and now that there was no loud music keeping your attention, you were practically falling asleep where you sat. So to his apartment the two of you went.
Things become spotty after that. You remember being forced back to consciousness by your screaming bladder, and when you opened your eyes, still pretty drunk and trying to get a sense of your surroundings, you realized that you were on Tae’s bed, splayed on top of the covers like you had faceplanted onto them and not moved an inch since. You remember the confusion quickly turning into fascination when you looked over and saw Taehyung was laying next to you, knocked out.
This was new. Any other time, you would have had a minor argument over who would sleep on the couch (because you felt bad kicking him out of his own bed in his own home and he flat out insisted you take said bed). But your plastered selves had apparently been too tired for that, because this time, you both had passed out side by side.
You stumbled to the bathroom to relieve yourself, groaning at how the lights disturbed your retinas. When you came back, properly sliding under the covers this time, you saw that Taehyung had turned in his sleep, now facing you. And there, fueled by lingering whiskey sours, emboldened by the darkness, you did what you never allowed yourself to do otherwise—stare.
All of your friends are annoyingly good-looking, but there has always been something about Taehyung that has drawn your eyes. He is nothing short of beautiful, and that night you freely drank it up, entranced by his profile—illuminated by the scant light filtering through his blinds. Dark curls mussed on a pillowcase. Long eyelashes fanned across his cheekbones. Lips, plush with a prominent cupid’s bow, puckered almost in invitation.
And naturally, drunk you accepted said invitation.
You leaned forward, easily shrinking the small gap between you, and curiously pressed your lips into the fullness of his, freezing in shock when they responded with equal pressure.
Pulling back confirmed that yes, Taehyung was awake, eyes dark and hazy as they looked back at you. For a few solid moments, you stared at each other, silent and unmoving. But it was him who broke the stillness next, face shifting closer and closer until your noses bumped. Until you shared one breath. Until your lips were parting so his tongue could slip inside.
Everything else is foggy, your memory stunted by drowsiness and alcohol, but your body still remembers. Still remembers the ghost of his mouth. Still remembers your heart pounding excitedly in your ears, still remembers the warm weight of him rolling on top of you. What your mind does remember, however, is waking up the next morning, head feeling like it was going to split in two, mouth feeling like cotton, and quickly realizing Taehyung had apparently fallen asleep with his hand down your pants.
Things were different without the moon as your accomplice. The sun wasn’t nearly as forgiving, and after carefully retracting all body parts to their respective owners, you both awkwardly shuffled around each other in the kitchen, you pouring water into glasses and Tae silently handing you the bottle of ibuprofen after taking a couple for himself.
You drained your whole glass before either of you bothered to speak. It was Tae who broke first.
“What if we just agree this never happened?” you offered, voice so croaky you had to clear your throat to continue. “I don’t even remember anyway.”
Taehyung paused, glass hovering near his mouth. “You don’t remember?”
You blinked, wondering if you should fess up to your partial lie. “Do you?”
The glass got set down, his eyes closing as he rubbed his temples with a hand. “Not really.”
Good. Great. This was a thing that had happened on accident and you both could move past it. “See? We both just had too much to drink. It doesn’t have to mean anything if we don’t let it. No one even has to know!”
“…Doesn’t have to mean anything,” he agreed with a final nod.
And that had been that.
Until the second time.
The second time happened a few weeks later, also by accident. But then again, if you thought about it, the second time was much more intentional than the first. That time, you were all at Jimin’s, because it was his turn to host your group’s monthly movie night. And Jimin never hosted movie night without homemade guacamole and bottomless margaritas. So while you weren’t blitzed like the last time, you were still pleasantly drunk. Enough to not immediately look away when you caught Taehyung staring at you when everyone else was too focused on the tv screen. Enough to slowly simmer under his persistent gaze throughout the night, to cross and recross your legs at the blatant desire in his expression.
It’s about a fifteen walk from Jimin’s place to Tae’s, but that night, Taehyung casually got on the train with you instead. When the doors opened on his stop, he made no move to get off.
“This is you,” you said, fully aware that he was aware.
“It is,” he hummed agreeably. His Adam’s apple bobbed. “Should I get off?”
You bit your lip. You shook your head.
Silently, you both watched his stop come and go, and then when it was time for yours, you exited the train.
Alcohol had lowered your inhibitions, yes, but that second time? It couldn’t be used as an excuse the second time. You had been haunted by the ghost of his lips ever since you decided to abandon them weeks ago, and now, now, you were both fully aware of every choice you made. Fully aware when you slowly peeled off your clothes, shy yet eager. Fully aware when he cupped you over your underwear. When he slid your panties down your legs so he could feel you properly, so his long fingers could fuck stars behind your eyelids. Fully aware of the velvety weight of him, the slick, sticky glide as he rutted into your hand.
Of sound mind when making these decisions, but rapidly losing it the longer he whispered in your ear, the longer he sucked color into your skin. “Taehyung,” you groaned into his collarbone. “Condom.”
And so it was different. And it was good. So fucking good that you could hardly believe this wasn’t some sort of sex dream your unconscious mind had cooked up. Taehyung was big and you felt him deep in your guts and halfway up your throat as he fucked you. He made you moan, made you whine, made you beg, and that only seemed to egg him on as he pounded you into the mattress with enough force to make your teeth rattle and your eyes roll back into your head.
And when it was over, it was clear that there was no going back. No excuses to be made. You had both wanted it and had acted on what you wanted, and that was that.
The next morning found you both in the kitchen again, a charged silence in the air as you went about making beverages for the conversation that absolutely had to be had. Coffee for you. Apple cinnamon tea for Taehyung.
“So,” you hedged, sliding him a mug.
His smile was small and shy. “So.”
“We should probably talk about this.”
“Do you want to forget this too?”
“I…can’t,” you admitted, face heating in embarrassment. You didn’t know why you were embarrassed. The ache between your legs proved it was a little too late for that now.
Taehyung’s gaze turned to his mug, bobbing his teabag in the hot water again and again as he thought. “I couldn’t forget last time.”
That pulled a laugh from you. “I noticed,” you said, affection dripping from every word, and you wanted to suck the slip back in, to snatch it back before it reached his ears. But Taehyung just smiled bigger into his mug.
You sat across from him. “This is going to keep happening, isn’t it?”
He was quiet for a few moments, contemplating your question. Or maybe his answer. He looked back up, solidly holding your gaze. “If you want it to.”
You weren’t prepared for that response. If you wanted it to? What kind of question was if you wanted it to? Shouldn’t it be the other way around?
“Did you like it?” he prompted when your silence stretched a bit too long.
“I mean…” You officially dreaded running into your next door neighbors in the halls and you had no doubt a few noise complaints were coming your way, so that should have been obvious. “Yeah.”
“Me too,” he said easily, and there it was. The bright, boxy smile you had a hard time saying no to. “I like making you feel good. So why not?”
Your heart skipped at that flippant admission. There were a lot of reasons why not, but he made it sound so simple. So easy. You both liked doing it, so why not?
Still, it seemed too good to be true, and you bit your lip warily. “No strings attached? Nonexclusive?”
His head tilted a little at your proposal, and you rushed to explain it. “This is just for fun, right? So let’s keep it fun and uncomplicated. I don’t want to hold you up or anything, so how about we can have other partners, so long as we always use protection.”
“…That sounds fair to me,” he replied after a moment.
You held up a finger. “But if we find someone we want to start seeing seriously, we should stop. Because that would make things messy and be unfair to everyone involved.”
He nodded in agreement. “And whether there’s someone else or not, if you ever want to stop for any reason at all, just tell me.”
There was a fat chance that would happen, but you appreciated his careful consideration nonetheless. “And do you mind if we just keep this between us?”
Taehyung’s eyebrows pinched for a second before you saw his face smooth out. “Sure. Any reason why?”
“I just think other people could complicate things,” you admitted. “And you know how nosy our friends are. They won’t let us just be, you know? They’ll make it into something it’s not.”
“Just between us, then.” He offered his hand, and despite you being the main one who thought things through, you found yourself shy to take it. You shook on it, and that was that.
And so, a standing arrangement was made, with rules in place to help keep it just as simple as it sounded. No strings attached— nonexclusive, and either of you can stop it at any time. It was easy—whenever either of you was feeling particularly frisky, you would go to him (or him to you) and he would thoroughly pipe you down until that itch was scratched.
But, of course, nothing is ever truly simple. Because there was one giant reason why you didn’t want anyone to know about your tryst. The glaring problem you’ve been ignoring since the start is that no matter how much Tae helps you scratch, you are never going to stop itching.
Because you may or may not be harboring a fat crush on your friend.
And Yoongi knows.
That night you got wasted on scotch and drank him under the table? Apparently, scotch makes you talkative, and Yoongi has always been a good listener. He casually brought it up when the two of you had grabbed coffee the next morning and you wanted to walk into traffic, you were so embarrassed by your own loose lips. But Yoongi is a great friend in that he promised he would never repeat your secrets. He is also a great friend in that he would never let you go along with this friends with benefits situation knowing what he knows, and knowing that it can’t possibly end well for you.
You know that too, of course. You’re fully aware of how bad an idea this is. How his eventual rejection will shatter you, how it will ruin the dynamics of your entire friend group. And still, you went forward with it. Because before you could stop it, your small crush on one of your best friends bloomed into something much more than that. And so these little nights where you ached for dick? You didn’t just want any dick. You wanted Taehyung’s. Only Taehyung’s. Only Taehyung.
You know that the moment Yoongi finds out, he’ll try to talk some sense into you—because he’s a good friend, and, unlike you, he wants what’s best for you.
And hypothetical Yoongi is right. This is a stupid idea, absolutely moronic to put yourself in this kind of of situation. But you are always stupid when it comes to Taehyung. Greedy. You want all of him, all his belly laughs and dark looks and enthusiastic karaoke performances and soft touches and introspective mornings. You want that—want any and all scraps he’s willing to give you, and at this point in time, you find enough strength in this blatant weakness that you keep giving yourself to him.
Or, at least, you had.
Tonight, Taehyung pushes you against his apartment door, his urge to touch you outweighing his urge to hustle you both inside. His hands travel the curve of your ass, fingers digging into the meat of you in a way that can only be interpreted as mine. And you let him.
It’s not like that, he had told you, and as much as it hurts, it also ignites a fire within you. Because he promised to tell you if anyone else serious came along. Any serious prospects for either of you? This would all would end. You would stop.
He promised, but he hasn’t claimed her. And, because of that, you can still have him—can bask in him as long as he keeps asking. As long he allows you.
Greedy, greedy. Stupid, stupid.
“Hobi-hyung was right,” he murmurs against your mouth. He’s much taller than you, so he has to bend down a good amount to meet you, though this has never seemed to bother him. “Should have checked the right nipple. I was hoping you would.”
It takes you a moment to figure out what he’s talking about, too distracted by the way his knee purposely slips between your legs. His sweater. The evasive Waldo.
“I’m much more interested in your pants,” you breathe, fingers tugging on the waistband to prove your point.
“Hmmm?” He smirks, and you tingle all the way to your toes. “Why? What do you think I’m hiding in there?”
You cup him, revel in the hiss that escapes his lips at the small pressure. “Taehyung. Open the door.”
He doesn’t have to be told twice, quickly rooting in the pockets of said pants for his keys and shifting you out of the way so he can properly access the lock. But after that, he barely gives you room to breathe, lips reuniting with yours. Hands sliding your coat to the ground and circling your waist, pulling you flush against him. Making sure you can feel the hard evidence of his want for you. Eager. Without separating from you, he kicks the door shut behind him, slips his shoes off, and starts walking you backwards.
You would tease him about his enthusiasm, but you’re no better. You thrive in it. Every step closer to his bed, every teasing brush of his thumbs beneath the hem of your sweater fills you with barely-suppressed glee. The little whimper he lets out when you work off his pants? Relief.
It’s you who sinks to your knees, who scrapes your teeth over the hairs trailing his belly button, down, down. It’s you who purposefully presses your tongue into his weeping slit. You whose insides glow, bright as the sun, at the way his groans are barely able to be choked out. Because it’s your mouth he’s fucking into, not Jisoo’s. Not anyone else’s. It’s you who he belongs to, even if only for these fleeting moments.
Taehyung pulls you off of him before you can really get a rhythm going, before you decide to start fondling his balls in a way you know from experience will end him. Because, from the way he’s fisting your hair, tugging from the scalp with the exact amount of force that you love, he’s not ready to be done with you.
He undresses you with practiced hands, taking care to suck blooming color into all stretches of skin he uncovers. Open-mouthed kisses at the junction of your neck and collarbone. A light nip of your right breast, tongue immediately following and laving over the irritated area. When he finally decides to slip a hand between your thighs to get you ready for him, he can’t help but shudder when he realizes you already are. Two fingers easily sink into your hot cunt, a third making a gasp escape you.
“Look at you,” he mutters as he strokes you, and his tone borders enough on reverent that your whole body prickles in ecstasy. “Make me so fucking crazy.” A thumb swirls around your clit with intent and he recaptures your lips, inhaling your gasps as he beckons, beckons, and your thighs shake.
It’s too much—it’s not enough, and you’re going dizzy with want for him. Your hands scrabble up his back, pulling him completely on top of you, his warm weight more than welcome. Your chests are flush, and still, it is not enough.
Taehyung somehow understands you—has always managed to understand you. Understands the root of your growing frustration. With one last lingering kiss, he pulls away just enough to reach over and open the drawer of the nightstand next to you.
You feel protest building beneath your skin but you suppress it. Because previous encounters have taught you that you’re getting what you want. And sure enough, he roots out a condom, wasting no time in ripping open the foil and rolling the rubber down his length.
No matter how often he’s had you, the first press of his cock has always been intense—he is long and thick and yours, yours. Taehyung covers you with his body and fills in all your empty spaces until you are finally whole. Until you’re both slick with sweat and his hair sticks to his forehead, a notably primal noise rumbling in his chest. Until you’re so out of your mind that your teeth lock into his shoulder and you quiver uncontrollably.
It’s only during these moments that you allow yourself the luxury of pretending. Only during these moments that you allow your mind to linger in the fantasy that this is more than it is.
After, Taehyung always pulls you against him, and you always silently barter with the sun for a little more time. Wordlessly beg the moon to stay, please stay, just a little bit longer.
You always fall asleep in his arms, his steady heartbeat lulling you into unconsciousness, and that’s that.
There’s nothing in particular that wakes you the next morning. It could be the sound of movement in the next room, but it could also be the growing sunlight filtering through the blinds, or your brain nudging you because your subconscious knows you have somewhere to be. In any case, you blink slowly and unseeingly at the closet door, languidly stretching your legs one by one beneath the sheets.
Until it suddenly clicks in the recesses of your mind that the reason you’re squinting is because the sun is well and fully out. And you have somewhere you should be.
You leap out of bed, frazzled and adrenaline pumping as you ruffle through your discarded jeans for your phone. You forgot to set your alarm and it’s 11:15. Fuck.
“Taehyung!” you yell, slapping on one of his t-shirts you find haphazardly thrown over a chair. It’s just big enough to cover all your important bits, but that’s the last thing on your mind as you storm into the hallway in search of your friend.
You find him in the kitchen. He turns at the sound of your voice, hair adorably mussed by his pillow and your hands. “Hey,” he greets you, deep voice somehow always even deeper in the morning. He’s wearing nothing but a pair of gray sweatpants, and you swallow hard at the sight, forcing yourself to focus.
“I missed my flight!” you screech. “Why didn’t you wake me up?”
Tae bites his lip. “So funny story,” he says in a way that lets you know that the oncoming story will be anything but. “You know that huge snowstorm that’s set to hit at the end of the week?”
“…Yes?” you reply suspiciously. You’ve been keeping an eye on it, worried that it might interfere with your travel plans. But your local weatherman’s assurance that you would already be home and eating your grandma’s macaroni and cheese by the time the storm hit you calmed you.
“Well,” he continues, a nervous chuckle putting you on edge. “It hit last night. Surprise!”
You blink, unamused by his obvious joke. “What.”
“Twenty-two inches,” he continues. “Your flight has definitely been canceled. I doubt we can even get out of this building right now, to be honest. Who knows when my landlord’s gonna start shoveling.”
“Taehyung. Now is not the time to play with me,” you warn. Even as you’re unlocking your phone to factcheck him yourself.
“I’m not,” he promises, holding up his hands, pacifying. “Flights are canceled and you looked tired, so figured I’d just let you sleep.”
But his explanation falls on deaf ears when the internet confirms everything he’s saying. Jaw dropping in disbelief, you rush towards the window over the sink, separating the blinds with a finger.
All you see is white.
“Holy shit,” you mutter to yourself in wonder, astonished to not even be able to see any of the cars you know for a fact are parked along the street. Hell, you can’t even see the street. Everything is just buried under too much snow.
“There’s nothing we can do,” he says, a hand catching your elbow. He leads you to the table. “Come on, sit down. I’ll make you some coffee.”
“Thanks,” you say, dazedly doing what he asks as your mind goes a mile a minute. Worried your mother will still wait at the airport for a plane that will never arrive, you quickly give her a call.
“I figured,” she says. “I saw that a storm hit your area on the news, and when I looked it up, your plane had been canceled.”
“I’m sorry, Mom.”
“Girl, don’t be! I haven’t even gotten dressed yet.” You can hear Christmas music playing in the background, and you can imagine her, still in her pajamas, in the kitchen getting started on the dishes she was assigned to bring to your grandmother’s tomorrow. Now that your plans of going home are a little more up in the air, it makes you a little homesick. “Are you safe? Still have power and enough food?”
“Yes.” Your eyes dart to Taehyung, who is busy pulling what he needs from the cabinets near the sink. You swallow. “I’m safe. I’m going to look today to see if I can get another flight, but Mom, I think I’m gonna miss Christmas.”
Your mother has always been rather perceptive of your emotions, and you know this time is no different when, after a pause, she replies, “Don’t be sad, baby. It’s beyond your control and everything happens for a reason. We’ll just celebrate whenever you make it home.”
“I’m going to try to get another flight,” you repeat, and she just chuckles. “I’ll let you know.”
After promising to pass along the bad news to the rest of your family, your mother hangs up with a love you. You sigh, definitely a little forlorn.
Taehyung shoots you a sympathetic look over his shoulder. “This will make you feel better,” he promises as he continues his quest. He doesn’t drink coffee, but he still always has a box of your favorite kind on hand and that’s what he gets brewing for you. “We’re honestly lucky we still have power,” he muses, pulling creamer out of the fridge as he waits for the Keurig to finish brewing your cup. “It’s cold as shit outside.”
“Yeah,” you murmur, still internally frazzled. This new development has thrown you completely for a loop.
“What do you want for breakfast?” he asks, musing over fridge inventory. “I have half a pizza, eggs, kimchi, and that spray cheese in a can.”
You grimace. “Why in the hell do you have spray cheese?”
“Because it’s lowkey fire at 2am and it’s good food to have in case of an apocalypse,” he replies, tone much too reasonable for someone who kept cans of spray cheese in their fridge. He gestures towards the window. “And would you look at that? Snowpocalypse. Aren’t you glad we have this spray cheese?”
You pretend to think, though you can’t help the chuckles that escape you at his ridiculous reasoning. “No, not really.”
It’s him who laughs this time, pouring creamer into the awaiting coffee mug and returning it to the refrigerator door. He stirs in two sweetener packets then casually hands the mug to you.
“Thanks. Okay, but seriously! How the hell are meteorologists so wrong all the time?” You take a sip, humming in approval when you find the coffee to be exactly how you like it. “I mean, I was too busy to check the weather yesterday, but I’ve been paying attention for the past few days and they always said the storm would hit later. How could they not have seen this coming?”
“It’s pretty embarrassing,” he agrees, moving to pull out his own mug. You see him pause in realization when his hand wraps around his newest favorite, the light bulb visibly turning on in his head. “Wait…is this how you knew?”
The mug’s gorgeous—covered in vibrant colors painted in distinct, yet abstract patterns. The signature on the side declares it to be a print of one of Kim Jungwoo’s newest works.
You shrug, a small smile on your face. “I always see you drinking out of it so I just figured…”
“God, you’re amazing,” he says with a sigh, and you have to work very hard to control the elation building in your chest. To remind yourself not to take his words too seriously.
“I’m glad you think so.” You clear your throat. “Because looks like you’re stuck with me for a little bit.”
“You say that like it’s a bad thing.” Tae huffs out a laugh, sitting in the chair across from yours.
You lift a brow. “Isn’t this fucking up your holiday plans too?”
He shrugs. “I was gonna drive back, but who knows when the roads will be clear and safe. In the meantime, this’ll be fun! We’ve got internet, tv, food—though actually? Should we start rationing? Who knows how long we’ll be stranded.”
“You’re asking whether we should start rationing your cheese in a can,” you deadpan.
“You know what? Since you clearly think you’re too good for it, no cheese for you.”
“I think I’ll live.” You see him hide his smile behind his mug, and you tamp down yours, too. “Anyway, I’m pretty sure I saw some pancake mix in your cabinet the other day. How about I make us some and you can spray your little cheese on it.”
“Sounds like a plan,” he replies, so straight-faced that for a horrifying moment, you have to contemplate whether he’s kidding or not. But Tae has always had a rather sarcastic brand of humor, so you just pray that this is a prime example of that.
It’s only when you stand up and feel the resulting breeze on your ass that you remember that, aside from the extra-large t-shirt you’re wearing, you’re entirely naked. Heat rises to your face when you see Tae’s gaze immediately flick down to the long stretch of your legs. It’s strange that you’re bashful at his obvious attention—it’s not like he hasn’t seen and touched everything under that shirt before; not like he’s not the source of the hickeys littering your skin.
Still, it feels oddly intimate to hold his attention in such a manner now. To have him look for no other reason than to admire you.
“Let me put clothes on first,” you mutter, intensely aware of the way his eyes follow you out.
Ultimately, today becomes one of the most relaxing Christmas Eves that you’ve ever had. After you shower and throw your clothes from the night before back on, the two of you have breakfast and then settle onto the living room couch for a wondrously lazy day of watching cheesy Hallmark Christmas movies and scrolling your social media. You attempt to find a new flight home for tomorrow, but flights are already full and you’re not surprised—everyone else is also fighting tooth and nail to rebook their flight. In any case, with the way snow is still being cleared all over the city, you’re not too sure it will be safe for planes to fly tomorrow, anyway. You’ll just have to stay on top of it and try again later.
For a little while, your groupchat is active with conversation on everyone’s clear annoyance at travel plans being disrupted. But eventually, your friends all quiet and it’s just you and Taehyung again, eating leftover pizza and laughing at the wonderfully bad plots.
Before you realize it, it’s time for the two of you to call it a night, and it’s strange how easily you slot into place—like there’s a place for you to slot into. Strange how you wordlessly take the right side of the bed and him the left.
You almost offered to take the couch, but realized how ridiculous that was when Tae started to head to his bedroom and looked over his shoulder to make sure you were coming. You’ve shared the same bed as Taehyung before, obviously, but have never done so without also sharing your body. For that reason, it’s strange to watch him wash his face and brush his teeth, strange to see him don a rather pricey-looking pajama set, strange to slide in next to him under the sheets.
It’s all so blatantly domestic that your heart hurts. That you want to lick a path across his collarbone to reestablish boundaries, to ground yourself in what this really is.
That you want to close your eyes, want to bask in this simple feeling of belonging by his side for as long as you’re allowed.
You turn off the lamp next to you. You both shuffle in the darkness, getting comfortable.
“Goodnight,” Taehyung whispers, voice a lot closer than you thought it would be.
You turn over to face him. Give yourself one second to pretend, one second to look at the shadowed shape of him in the dark. You close your eyes.
You wake up the next morning with arms wrapped around you, lips resting in the crook of your neck. This doesn’t surprise you—Taehyung has always been a cuddler. Still, he’s never cuddled up to you without sex being involved, so you are a bit caught off guard.
He must just like to sleep like this, you tell yourself. You won’t lie and say you don’t enjoy it too—it’s nice and warm in your little blanket cocoon, the weight of his body near you, on you strangely comforting. You’re awake but you don’t get up, content to stay in this quiet, safe limbo.
Eventually, Taehyung stirs. So do you, jolted out of your trance and slipping away from him before he has the chance to see any expression on your face that it’s far too early to mask.
You use the restroom and brush your teeth with the toothbrush that has been designated as yours. (One morning after, you had complained of morning breath; the next time you slept over, it was already waiting for you in a drawer.) Your eyes idly roam your reflection as you press the bristles against your teeth in practiced small circles. Your hair, previously thrown into a quick bun, has been tousled in sleep, and you’re wearing Tae’s t-shirt again because you didn’t have anything else to sleep in.
You spit into the sink and crack open the door. “Taehyung.”
It takes long enough for you to rinse your mouth of foam for him to respond. “Hmm?”
“I don’t have any clothes.”
“You can borrow some of mine,” he replies, and his voice is gruff and muffled, like his face is still pressed into a pillow. It probably still is.
But despite what you anticipate when you reenter his bedroom, Taehyung is already out of bed and rooting around in his dresser. He reflexively glances at you when you appear in the doorway, eyes squinting in protest against the sunlight streaming through the window. His face is still puffy with sleep and his hair is even more disheveled than yours, sticking up in all directions. You’re extremely endeared.
“Thank you,” you say gratefully when he hands you another t-shirt and a pair of sweatpants. Your hand rises before you think about it, fingers raking against his scalp as you smooth his rebellious hair back into place.
Taehyung freezes, suddenly looking a lot more awake. He stares at you, and it’s only after a few moments of this that you realize exactly what you’re doing.
You snatch your hand back, awkwardly clearing your throat. “Um. Merry Christmas.”
A small smile creeps onto his face. “Merry Christmas, _____.”
Flustered, you gather the clothes close to your chest and return to the bathroom to change.
You’re in the living room, sipping on your coffee and waiting for the news to come back from commercial, when your phone vibrates.
Text message (now)
Your brows furrow in confusion. Taehyung is currently in the kitchen, having decided that it’s his turn to scrounge up some breakfast for the two of you since you cooked yesterday. Why is he texting you when you can hear him just fine from here?
Perplexed, you unlock the screen.
[10:15] Taehyung how do you like your eggs?
[10:15] Taehyung Fried or fertilized
You bite your lip, swallowing the laugh building in your chest. Because you certainly don’t want to encourage his ridiculousness.
“Stop trying to sext me,” you say loudly from your spot on the sofa. “I don’t need this right now.”
“Oh come on, _____. It’s a serious question,” you hear him call back. ”Don’t be like that!”
“Taehyung, I’m trying to see how long we’re gonna be trapped here. Can you be serious?”
He pops his head through the doorway, a clear pout on his face. “I am serious.”
You struggle not to break, pretending to be too engrossed in the updated weather report to notice the way he makes his way over to you. You definitely should be engrossed in the weather report—it’s the reason you’re watching the news in the first place—but you can’t help but have your focus stray elsewhere when Tae slowly drops one knee. The other.
Your heart rate speeds up, but you pretend to be unaffected. Pretend that you haven’t long-abandoned the local news, that you’re not hyper-aware of him and everything he’s doing. He’s blocking your view of the tv, so you pointedly lean to the side to see around him, lips pursed in an attempt to tamp down your amusement.
A few moments of nothing, of you both pretending you’re not hyper-aware of each other’s proximity.
Then, he makes his move.
His hands start on your knees, large and warm and shooting rippling sparks across your body. Still, you focus on not reacting. The weatherman is finally on tv, gesturing to the green screen map, but though he’s talking, you hear none of it, much too interested in the circles Taehyung’s thumbs are rubbing into the fabric of your sweatpants. (His sweatpants, big enough that you had to roll them over twice at the waist in order make them fit.) You’re able to keep up your apathetic charade until his hands inch higher, start rubbing further inward.
Your eyes snap to his. There’s an amused smirk touching his lips, but his eyes—you’ve seen that look in them before. It makes you reflexively swallow. “Really, Tae? I’m watching tv.”
“You don’t even have to do anything,” he wheedles, fingers hooking into your waistband. “Just pretend like I’m not even here.”
You give him a look, but don’t stop him when he starts to pull them down. Simply lift your hips a little to help him slip them off.
You didn’t have any clean underwear, so when the pants are tossed uncaringly to the ground, there is nothing to hide you from Taehyung’s feasting eyes. And feast he does, gently pushing your legs apart and immediately zeroing in on your naked sex, a distracted tongue swiping across his lips.
You hadn’t bothered to put a bra on this morning and now you regret it, your nipples proudly and visibly straining the material of your t-shirt and betraying your excitement. Though you suppose it doesn’t matter when he trails lazy, open-mouthed kisses up one of your legs, hands grabbing you by the ass and scooting you forward and closer to his mouth. His unhurried tongue playfully dragging through the crease where your thigh ends and your pussy begins.
“Taehyung,” you breathe, though you don’t really have anything to say. Tae seems to understand this, simply replying with a rather sweet kiss on your inner thigh before turning his head and going for the prize. You can’t help but let out a sigh at the contact, the familiar feeling of his mouth on you so warm and wet and good.
He takes his time, licking a wide stripe up your lips and idly circling your clit and making your indifferent facade immediately and abruptly drop. It is much too hard to keep it up when he’s eating you like you’re the best thing he’s ever tasted, like you’re something he wants to savor. And in any case, your body quickly betrays you, twitching after every bold flick of his tongue. Not to mention that the longer he keeps going, the wider your legs part for him. The more your back starts to slide down the couch, pushing further into his face.
Taehyung hums in approval, simply slinging your legs over his shoulder so he can get as close as possible. A moan escapes your lips before you can swallow it, a hand rooting itself in his dark curls. Wordlessly saying what you don’t. Don’t stop, oh, god, please don’t stop.
And at that point, something seems to snap in him. While before you were something to savor, now, Taehyung devours you, flat out going to town. Wet slurping quickly overtakes the sound of tv, only rivaled by your increasingly erratic breathing and the moans you can no longer keep at bay.
Your hips reflexively try to rise, but he keeps a firm hand on your thigh to hold you in place while he wraps his lips around your clit and sucks, looking you in the eye the entire time. You whine, rapidly coming undone, and he only responds by reaching up to roughly twist one of your nipples while he tongue-fucks you. That only makes you louder, only makes you sound more desperate. Only makes your eyes roll back in your head.
There’s no stopping it now—you’re past the point of no return, past all sense. You have tunnel-vision, mouth slack, every atom in your being screaming to be pushed off that final euphoric cliff, and that’s all you can think about. All you can focus on. You ride his face, hips grinding down hard and fingers tightening in his hair, holding him to you.
But Taehyung clearly has no intention of going anywhere, eyes fluttering shut in pleasure every few seconds, little satisfied whimpers escaping him every time you tug a bit too hard. And when your thighs finally trap his head between them, the intense orgasm making your back bow, he moans right along with you, greedily lapping up the fruits of his efforts.
As is usually the case, you have to push him away from you. Taehyung has always been utterly at home between your thighs, has always been honored to receive every drop you’re willing gift him. He would be there all day if you let him, but you’re too winded and sensitive for that right now, so he reluctantly pulls back.
Looking at him now, it almost looks like he was the one that was fucked out, not you. His hair is a mess again, eyes completely blown as they look at you. And, most telling, there’s a visible sheen on his face from his nose all the way down his chin that he pays no attention to, more focused on licking the remnants of you from his swollen lips.
You struggle to form words, the powerful orgasm he had coaxed from you rendering you drowsy and boneless. “W-wha…why—”
“’Tis the season!” he replies simply with a boxy grin. “Merry Christmas, babe.”
You stare at him, baffled, but Taehyung only pats you on the knee before standing up.
“Okay, but seriously, how do you like your eggs? Because the only other thing I know how to make is cereal, but I don’t have any milk, so if that’s what you want, you’ll have to eat it dry.”
Your feel like that one confused lady meme, brain shuffling through any and all mathematical equations that could help you solve the question he asked you. His cock is blatantly hard now and he’s not trying to hide it, but he also seems uninterested in doing anything about it. “…scrambled is fine.”
With an enthusiastic thumbs up, he leaves you there, puffy and slick, thighs still twitching.
You eat your eggs together on the couch, Taehyung shoveling his into his mouth like he didn’t just get done trying to suck your soul out through your pussy. The rest of your Christmas is spent bundled up under a shared blanket, sipping on hot cocoa and watching all the claymation Christmas movies that come on tv.
For the past two days, the streets have been a mess and trains unavailable. But when you wake up this morning, peeling yourself away from the unfamiliar scratch of Tae’s emerging stubble, everything seems to be back to normal. You can hear cars honking outside, can hear the scrape of shovels against concrete as people try to remove the last remains of the storm.
A glance at the unread messages in your groupchat only confirms your suspicions. Your friends have all successfully secured methods of leaving the city and are in various stages of heading back home. But you? You’re quickly reminded of how annoying it is when supply doesn’t meet demand. With everyone and their mother fighting to rebook their abruptly cancelled plans, the earliest available ticket that is also in your budget won’t even have you flying out until right before New Year’s. And seeing as you have to work on the 2nd, there is absolutely no point in spending the money only to come right back.
Disappointed, you sit at the kitchen table and you give your mom a call to deliver the news. She completely understands, of course, not wanting you to spend more money either.
“If I didn’t know any better, I’d think that you don’t care if I come at all,” you tease, eyes flicking to the doorway at sudden movement. It’s Taehyung, wearing a pair of glasses and still in his pajamas. When he sees you’re on the phone, he gives you a silent wave, mouth stretching wide into a yawn as he dutifully searches for your mugs.
“Now, you know that’s not true,” your mother laughs. “You’re my baby and I miss you. I’m sorry you had to spend Christmas all alone.”
Your heart pings at that sentiment, but your gaze can’t help but drift towards Tae, who has his back to you. He’s making you coffee, as has now apparently become your routine.
It’s bizarre that the word routine can even be used at all in relation to the two of you, at all—bizarre and mildly alarming. He makes you coffee and you bicker over what to watch on tv and you’re little spoon and you have an unspoken side of the bed. Just three days locked in an apartment together and things have become…comfortable.
You swallow, looking away. There is another word for this that you don’t dare utter, that you don’t dare to linger on. Because you don’t want to start seeing things where there are none.
You don’t want to convince yourself that this is something more than it is.
“Christmas alone wasn’t that bad,” you say. Tae’s hand, reaching for a spoon, pauses for just a second before his fingers wrap around it. You clear your throat. “Mostly just watched tv. But how about I try to come home sometime in the spring? Maybe for your birthday?”
Your mother is excited about this plan, just as you thought she would be. The two of you hang up just as Taehyung sets your mug in front of you.
“Thanks. Those are new,” you say, pointing to his glasses. He’s worn glasses before, of course, but they’ve always been more of a fashion statement. This pair is wire-rimmed and markedly dorky. It’s endearing and you love them.
He rubs the back his neck, embarrassed. “I ran out of contacts.”
“Don’t worry. I think they’re cute,” you grin, reaching over to give them a cheeky tap. “But lucky for you, it looks like we’re finally free to blow this joint—all snow has been cleared.”
“Really?” You’re not sure why he sounds so surprised. He had to have known that the snow wouldn’t last forever.
“Yup. So you won’t have to deal with me for much longer. I can get out of your hair.”
He takes a sip from his mug as he ponders that. “Where are you going to go?”
You puff out a laugh at the question. “Um, home? You know, my apartment?”
“Well, I’m the only one who lives there, so I would imagine so.” Your brows furrow in confusion. “Tae, what’s up with you?”
“It’s just…I’ve been thinking.” His fingers absentmindedly tap on the table as he mulls over his words. “You’re gonna be alone during the holidays. I’m gonna be alone during the holidays. So why don’t we just be alone together?”
You blink, brain slow to grasp his words. “You mean we should keep meeting up?”
“We could.” He shifts in his seat. “Or, we could just cut out all the in-between and you can just keep staying here.”
Well, you definitely didn’t see that coming. Your face must betray your surprise, because Taehyung is quick to try again. “Or we could stay at your place! Just a suggestion! I just figured it would be easier.”
You’re stunned silent, and it takes a few moments to find your voice. “You’re not sick of me yet?” you ask, bewildered.
“I could never get sick of you, _____,” he says, kind of shy, and it makes your chest warm, warm.
Remember what this is, you remind yourself, inwardly shaking off any delusional thoughts before they can take root. “…This is because you’re horny and you want easy access, isn’t it.”
But Taehyung scoffs, an irritated pinch to his brow. “I mean, I also just enjoy hanging out with you, but if you don’t want to, I get it.”
“No! No, I want to, Tae. I’m just surprised.” He meets your gaze then, expression softening a little. “I just have to go pick up some stuff from my apartment.”
“And I should stop at the grocery store so that we have other things to eat than apocalypse cheese,” he muses aloud.
The two of you end up going together. First stop is your apartment, where you take a shower and throw on the first clean clothes that have actually belonged to you in days. Taehyung waits for you, casually scrolling his phone as you go about packing a bag.
This is weird. Nowhere near normal and Tae is acting like it is, like you pack bags all the time with the express purpose of staying with him, in his place, in his bed. You feel like some sort of invisible line is being toed, but maybe it’s not. Maybe you’re just hypersensitive because you’re afraid you’ll get too comfortable with this new arrangement and open your big mouth and just flat out ruin everything.
So with that in mind, you say nothing as you toss in twice as much underwear than you could possibly need (can never be too careful) and a couple pairs of pants. You slip on your much needed winter boots and then you’re off to get groceries.
The two of you chat as you peruse the aisles, Tae dutifully pushing the cart while you contemplate what items you’ll need for dinner tonight. You chat while you carry the bags the few blocks to Tae’s apartment. You chat while you start a new tv series together, while you prepare dinner together and while you eat it together. And on the surface, everything is nice and easy, like it always is when it comes to Tae. You’re alone and so is he, so you should be together. One plus one equals two.
But Taehyung’s wide smile makes the forbidden thing in you build and build, grow and grow.
You smile back, and you say nothing.
“You know what we should do today?” Taehyung asks. He’s just hopped out of the shower and his hair is wet, loose waves dripping dark spots into the material of his t-shirt.
You look up from your bowl of cereal, but you don’t stop chewing. You watch a bead of water trail down his neck and have to hold yourself back from leaning over to lick it up. “What?”
“We should go see that exhibit.”
It takes a second for your brain, always sluggish in the morning, to catch on to what he’s saying. “You mean your Christmas gift?”
“Yeah.” He’s excited, eyes practically disappearing with the force of his wide and boxy smile. Like a child on Christmas morning. “Let’s go!”
“Tae, you don’t have to go with me, you know,” you point out. “It’s your gift. You can use those tickets on whoever you want.”
He snorts, like what you said was ridiculous. “And I want to use them on you. And since it’s my gift, you can’t say no.”
This time, it’s you who smiles. “Can’t argue with that.”
So after a change of clothes, it’s to the industrial building serving as an art gallery you go. A quick call to your cousin ensures that tickets are waiting for you at the front desk, and Taehyung’s smile doesn’t leave the whole way there.
There are a good amount of people already in the allotted space when you enter, only confirming to you that this is most definitely an exhibit you should be seeing while you can. While you can certainly appreciate it, you’re not really into art like Taehyung is. Kim Jungwoo’s work, however, catches your attention immediately. You realize after setting eyes on the first piece that Jungwoo’s art is truly something that should be experienced firsthand—it doesn’t take long to see that the print on the mug Taehyung uses every day doesn’t hold a candle to the real thing. Everything skews a bit abstract, but the coloring of each piece, the length of each and every brushstroke, somehow makes you feel.
You aren’t expecting this reaction, so you take your time scanning each each piece, simply marinating in whatever emotions come. Tae does the same, so, naturally, your paths diverge and reconnect as you go along, a dance of push and pull.
It’s only when you cross him again at one of the last pieces that the two of you have your first real conversation.
“These are gorgeous,” you offer, touching his arm to get his attention. Your voice is soft, not wanting to disturb the introspective quiet of the room.
“Mmm.” Taehyung looks down at you, then back to the painting. His brow pinches a little as he mulls over it, full of curling shades of gray. You think him so deep in thought that it almost startles you when he speaks again. “I really like this one. Were there any in particular that spoke to you?”
It only takes you a second to respond. “That one,” you say, pointing to one of the first paintings. Wordlessly, he makes his way back to it, and you follow, trying to put into words why you like it so much. “I don’t know, it just feels very layered? Like, the title is Contentment. But the colors chosen feel the complete opposite—there is a lot of red and black, and those are really bold, you know? Colors we usually associate with powerful things. Intense, uncontrollable. And so it makes me feel like he’s lying, either to us, his intended audience, or to himself. How can he be content when there’s clearly something brewing beneath the surface? Consuming him from the inside out?”
He nods slowly as you speak, considering your interpretation of the canvas. “You’re right,” he says finally. “It does feel like there’s a lot being unsaid.” A few moments pass, where you both simply look at painting, quiet. Then, he turns back to you, expression unreadable. “Thank you. For being here with me.”
Your breath catches in your throat at the unnamed intensity in his gaze. You aren’t sure what to say. “Of course,” you say reflexively. And that is enough.
After a few more minutes of browsing, the two of you decide to leave. The piece Tae had been entranced by is close to the exit, and you give it another casual glance as you walk by.
Longing, the placard says. You turn away.
The sun is deceivingly bright outside—when looking out the window, it appears to be a beautiful winter day. But as soon as you exit the building, you’re assaulted by the rather frigid air, passersby huddling beneath their coats and walking briskly to keep warm.
Taehyung shuffles further into his winter coat as well, breath puffing out in visible bursts. He looks ridiculously handsome against the snowy city backdrop, a natural model for a men’s cologne ad. His long coat is fashionable and heavy, but from the way he’s stuffing his hands in his pockets, apparently not heavy enough.
“Fuck it’s cold,” he says, and you feel that sentiment in your bones. Literally.
“You’re the one who wanted to go outside,” you remind him, teeth chattering as the two of you hustle the few blocks to the restaurant you’ve chosen for lunch. Your hood is up, but you regret not bringing a hat too. “I was perfectly content to keep marathoning The Good Place.”
He laughs, an arm casually sliding over your shoulder and pulling you into his side so you can share body heat. And this is better. A little bit.
“Don’t be like that,” Taehyung chastises. “It’s Christmas.”
“Taehyung, it is not Christmas.”
“Christmas is a feeling, _____.”
“It’s also a date on the calendar. That has now passed.”
Taehyung tuts, opening the restaurant door for you. The warmth from inside spills out, and you both sigh in relief, rubbing your hands together as the hostess leads you to your table by the window. Luckily, said window appears to be insulated well, because you feel no breeze when you start to peel off your layers. “If it’s not Christmas,” Taehyung continues cheekily, head tilting towards the window. “How do you explain that?”
Amused, you follow his line of sight across the street, where a man in a lot is standing next to a big sign that says Christmas Trees.
“Oh my god, are they seriously still selling Christmas trees?” you snort incredulously, attention moving back to your menu. “Who the hell is still buying them? And honestly, with how rough those trees look, that guy should be paying you to take one.”
“We should get one.”
You laugh, trying to decide what kind of soup you want to come with your sandwich. But Tae’s laugh doesn’t follow, and, wary of his silence, you glance back up. There is a suspicious glint in his eyes, a quirk of his lips that you don’t trust. “…Wait a minute,” you say. “Are you serious?”
“Taehyung, why do you want to purchase a raggedy-ass Christmas tree?”
“They’re not that raggedy, and because Christmas was stolen from us this year.”
“They’re raggedy. You and I both know they’re raggedy.”
“_____,” he says tone more serious than you’re anticipating for such a silly conversation. “You were really looking forward to the holidays. And I know it’s obviously not the same, but there’s no reason we can’t celebrate now.”
That throws you for a loop. Yes, you’ve been pretty content over these past few days, but you have also been a little bummed that the snowstorm snatched your holiday plans away from you. You hadn’t realized Tae has been watching you that closely, and it makes your chest warm to know he has.
“…Okay, fine,” you say, hiding your growing smile behind your menu. “We can go get your tree.”
Taehyung hoots in victory and you shush him, though you don’t really mean it.
After you eat lunch and pay, you dutifully bundle back up and follow him to the Christmas tree lot across the street, where the guy selling them is thrilled to see potential customers. He tells you that all trees are 75% off, which doesn’t surprise you, seeing as the holiday has already passed and the demand for his product has gone way down. Still, looking at his inventory, you personally think even that amount is too much.
You can’t help but voice your concerns. “Taehyung, Charlie Brown’s tree looked better than any of these.” The vendor shoots you a dirty look, but you don’t care. These trees are busted. Clearly, the winter storm had not been kind to them.
“Doesn’t matter,” Tae says cheerfully, walking slowly so he can inspect each one. “We can fill it in with a lot of clearance ornaments.”
“Wow, you’re really going all out, huh?” you tease.
He scoffs, turning his head to throw you a pointed look. “Obviously. It’s Christmas.”
“It’s not Christmas.”
“We have already discussed this! It is Chris—”
You’re not quite sure what happens. One second he is playfully arguing with you, the next he disappears from view, swept entirely off his feet. You startle at the flurry of movement, bewildered when you realize that he’s now on the ground, limbs askew. “Oh my god, Tae! Are you okay?”
Taehyung winces, speckled with wayward snow. “Ow! I think I broke it,” he groans as you scramble to help him up.
“Broke what?” you ask as he stands, giving him a panicked scan for injury.
He answers by rubbing his behind, no doubt bruised. “Kiss it better?”
You roll your eyes, unamused, but happy he’s not actually hurt. “I’m not kissing your ass,” you snort, reaching over to brush the snow off it anyway. “And to be honest, you can kiss mine for even asking me to.”
He nods. “Later,” he says, and it sounds suspiciously like a promise. The way he’s grinning does not bode well for you.
For the sake of time, you both agree that Tae will choose the tree and you will choose the ornaments, so you leave him to quickly pop into a nearby store to grab a bunch of ornaments and string lights from the sale bin. When you return, you find that the tree Taehyung has chosen is as tall as he is, but spindly, and, frankly, pretty sad.
“He tacked on even more of a discount,” Tae informs you cheerfully. “I think he’s worried I’ll sue him.”
“You should,” you mutter under your breath. “For having the audacity to sell you that tree.” You frown, mentally trying to figure out the logistics. “Taehyung, should we go get your car?”
“Nah. I can just carry it.”
Your eyebrows raise. “We can’t get on the train with this. You’re really gonna carry it for six blocks?”
He lifts it, testing its weight. “It’s not that far,” he decides. “And my pride is at stake.”
“What pride?” you reply incredulously. “You literally just busted your ass five minutes ago!”
“That’s exactly why it’s at stake,” he insists, and the branches of the tree are so sparse, you can see him pouting through them. “And you know the only reason I fell is that they didn’t salt the ground and it’s slippery.”
You have bite your lip to stop yourself from laughing, not wanting to hurt his feelings. “Whatever you say, mountain man. Go ahead and carry your tree.”
“I will,” he snarks back.
And so he does. For six blocks, you trail behind him as he lugs around a forty-pound evergreen that is very visibly on its last leg. You would argue that Tae is on his last leg too, with the way he huffs and puffs and repeatedly tries to rearrange it in his arms so the needles aren’t sticking him in the face.
“Need help?” you offer, amused.
His response is quick and irritated. “No.”
You roll your eyes. Men. If he wants to struggle to simply to prove a point, that’s on him. You were just gonna carry your ornament bag and make sure he didn’t get hit by any cars.
Finally, finally, the two of you make it to Tae’s apartment building. Into the small elevator you go, Tae resting some of the weight of the tree against a wall. Surprisingly, you almost make it all the way home without inconveniencing anyone else, but the elevator doors end up opening halfway up. (You get a weird look from the person on the other side, who wisely chooses to just catch the next one.) And by the time Taehyung is dumping the tree on his living room floor, he’s thoroughly winded.
“See?” he gasps out. “Easy.”
You can’t help the snort that escapes you this time. “Oh Tae~,” you tease, batting your eyelashes. “You’re so big and strong.”
He’s leaning over, hands on his knees as he catches his breath. “Damn straight.”
The two of you get to work decorating your sad tree, and it’s nice. Really nice, especially when he pours you glasses of wine to sip while you work, Nat King Cole crooning in the background. Slowly but surely, the tree starts to come together, and while it may not be the most stunning to most people, it is to you.
It is to you.
It’s when you’re completely done, the two of you sipping on your third-ish glasses of wine while admiring your hard work, that Taehyung pulls out his next bout of holiday cheer.
You frown at the random leaves he’s holding over your head, confused. “…Is that cilantro?”
“Does this look like cilantro to you?” he asks, and he sounds kind of hesitant for some reason. Shy.
“Obviously it does, or I wouldn’t have asked.” You smile, willing to go along with his antics, just like you always are. “Are we having tacos for dinner? I don’t think you have any tortillas.”
“No, you dummy,” he replies, huffing out a laugh. “This is clearly mistletoe and we are clearly standing under it.”
Oh. Oh. You swallow, flustered by this new development. “We’re actually sitting right now, so who’s truly the dummy here?”
“Are you really going to argue with me? Standing, sitting, it’s all covered under mistletoe law.”
“Mistletoe law,” you deadpan.
“_____. It’s Christmas. You can’t ignore a Christmas tradition on Christmas.”
“I don’t know how many times I have to tell you this, Kim. It’s not Christmas.”
He gestures to the Christmas tree the two of you have just finished putting up. “We’ve already agreed that today is Christmas, so it is. Do you really wanna anger the mistletoe gods?”
You laugh, endeared by his persistence. “No,” you agree softly. “Can’t have that.”
Even though he finally has your cooperation, Taehyung hesitates before he leans in, dark eyes reflecting the Christmas lights like he has stars in them, has the whole universe.
And to you, he does.
He’s kissed you before, of course. Many, many times. But never without sex being the ultimate destination, and the press of his lips against yours now, with no other motive than to bask in you, rapidly throws you into a tailspin. It’s soft and strangely a bit timid and you can taste the wine on his breath, but you don’t care in the slightest because right now, the man with stars in his eyes is focused on you. You, you, you.
There’s a feeling crawling up your throat, one you aren’t sure what to do with. It simmers and simmers, even after Tae pulls away from you, face flushed. Panicked, you lean back in, desperately licking his mouth open. He’s noticeably surprised, but follows your lead easily, like he always does. Kissing you back with just as much fervor. Grunting when you swing a leg over his lap, when your hand finds its way in his pants.
And you’re grateful. Grateful, because one more second of him looking at you like that and you’re going to cry. Going to flat out explode, and who knows if the resulting fragments of you will be salvageable. But it’s okay. Because when you’re doing this, when you’re busy riding his cock until he fucks you blind and it’s hard to breathe, it’s easy to forget.
But there’s only so long pressure can build. Only so long it can be trapped, can be pushed down and ignored. It doesn’t take long for you to learn this the hard way.
The next day, you’re lounging around the apartment, today being declared lazy after all the excitement of the day before. You’re on the one of the last episodes of The Good Place and Tae made you pause it while he’s in the kitchen, fetching you both more snacks.
And it is at this unassuming point in time that everything goes to shit.
An insistent buzzing has you reflexively searching your surroundings for the source, and it doesn’t take long for you to realize it’s Tae’s phone.
“Taehyung,” you yell, not bothering to move a muscle from your cozy blanket cocoon. Tae may have willingly left it seconds before, but you saw zero reasons for you to do the same. “Your phone is ringing!”
You hear him opening and shutting a drawer. “Who is it?”
You sigh, mustering up the will and energy to lean over and scrabble around the coffee table. When your fingers wrap around the vibrating pest, you listlessly bring it closer to your face.
The blood in your veins instantly runs ice cold. You stare at the screen, the words flashing across it quickly losing meaning as the phone continues to ring. Woodenly, you stand, blanket falling from your form like the afterthought it is.
Taehyung looks over his shoulder when he hears you enter the kitchen, a smile lacing his lips in greeting. But that smile soon falls, eyebrows pinching in confusion at whatever he must see on your face. He reflexively takes the phone you hold out to him, but one glance at the screen has his eyes snapping back to yours. His lips part.
“I think I should go,” you say quietly. There’s a burning behind your eyes but you blink it back into submission and turn to go gather your things.
“Wait.” There’s an edge of urgency to the word, a sense of rising panic. But you pay it no mind, hurrying to the bedroom to get your bag.
You’ve been stupid to forget—blatantly foolish and willfully obtuse. You’re a placeholder, and no amount of playing house will ever change that. Absolutely no different than what Alexa is to Hoseok, simply someone there to entertain him and warm his bed. Though, you suppose, you are different than Alexa. At the very least, Hoseok claims her, for however long he decides to do so. At least she has that.
“Wait,” Taehyung says again, and you’re not listening, too busy throwing one of your errant shirts back into the bag. He grabs you by the arm and you stop, frozen. “Wait.”
“What are we doing, Taehyung?” you whisper.
“What do you mean?” He’s trying to catch your eye, trying to make you look at him. “Baby, I need you talk to me. What do you mean?”
“This.” You gesture wildly at nothing, at everything. Let out a shuddery breath. “This. What are we doing?”
“What we’ve always done,” he insists. His voice is getting louder, more distressed. “What’s the problem?”
Your head whips up, finally meeting his eye. “Stop pretending you’re dumb.” You’re tired, oh so tired. “Because we both know you’re not.”
That must be the wrong thing to say—the panic in his face steels out, his eyes daggers. “Why are you even upset?” he says cooly. “I don’t see how it matters.”
Flames lick up your throat. Flames that have been there for months. Flames that you’ve ignored, even as they slowly smothered you with smoke. “Maybe,” you say lowly. Carefully. The word rolling bitterly on your tongue. “I don’t want to be around when you’re fucking other people.”
And there it is. The truth that has been hovering between you all this time, practically a third party in your fucked up excuse of a relationship.
For a second, your truth renders Taehyung mute. His jaw drops slightly, head tilting in unspoken question. Gone is his carefully-neutral expression—in its place, blatant indignation reigns. “It’s never bothered you before.”
If only he knew. If only he knew how hard you’ve worked to turn a blind eye, to keep up your charade. You don’t want to hear any more. “This was a mistake,” you say quietly, and his face crumples. “This was all a mistake, and I think I should go before either of us says something that we’ll regret.”
Your attempt at diffusing the situation only seems to make him more mad. He’s shaking his head. No no no. “Don’t do that,” he growls. “Don’t play games with me, _____.”
“Don’t do what?” you snap. “What the hell are you talking about?”
“You know damn well I’m in love with you!” He’s shouting now, but his voice is starting to crack. “Don’t do that.”
“Stop it.” Someone’s breathing is audible, and through the blood pumping in your ears, you can’t discern whether it’s him or you. Probably both. “Stop playing dumb. There’s no way you don’t know.”
“What?” A broken record. You sound like a broken record, but you have no idea how to stop. No idea how else you can possibly respond.
“The only reason I even started seeing her is because you didn’t want me!” he yells.
Your brain whirrs, way too much information at once. “When did I ever say that?”
“You didn’t have to say it!” he spits, and now you’re crying. You don’t realize it, too caught up in the moment, but you definitely are, tears silently trekking down your face as you try to comprehend how in the hell you both got here. “You don’t have to say it, because you make it perfectly clear that this is all you want from me. And at first, I was more than happy to give it to you. But the more I have you, the more I want you. I want all of you, even if you’re only interested in certain pieces of me.” His breath is coming out too fast. He’s crying too. “I love you, and you insist that I hide it and pretend that I don’t!”
You’re stunned, struck completely dumb. Absolutely floored, flabbergasted.
“But if you want to leave, then fine.” He’s much quieter now, subdued. He sniffs, angrily wipes a hand across his face. “It’s probably for the best.”
But now, leaving is the furthest thing from your mind. Your brain is finally caching up, finally processing everything that he’s just said.
“Say it again,” you finally reply, voice small. “I need to hear you say it again.”
“What?” he huffs. “That I want you?”
“No. How do you feel about me, Taehyung?” You’re moving closer to him, steps slow, slow, approaching not unlike you would a spooked animal. “I need to hear you say it again.”
His brows furrow. “I love you,” he repeats, the words full of irritation.
But that’s all you need to hear. The final shackle shattering, the last thing holding you back no more. Your hands find purchase in his shoulders, and though he eyes you warily, he doesn’t stop you when you rise on your toes and press your lips against his cheek.
“Again,” you murmur, hands drifting, fingers trailing into his hair. “Tell me again.”
His eyelashes flutter, distracted by the kiss you place on the underside of his jaw. “I love you.”
Unhurried, you adorn his skin with proof of your own devotion, kissing him every time he says it and even when he doesn’t. It’s only when he finally pulls back a little, a blatant question in his gaze, that you set free the words you’ve refused to utter.
“I love you too, you dummy.”
That’s the cue he’s been waiting forever and ever for, and unlike you, he only needs to hear it once. Taehyung gently takes your overnight bag from your hands and tosses it uncaringly to the side. Despite his tender actions, the way he’s looking at you tells a completely different story.
He looks at you like you’re a delectable meal and he’s starving. Like he’s one sudden move from devouring you whole.
And it sets everything in you alight.
His hands find your hips, then your ass, working the flesh as he kisses you, as he stumbles you towards his bed. And yours are just as frantic, utterly impatient in their quest to yank down his zipper and grip him through his underwear.
He lets you. Bucks into your hand until he’s nice and whiny and desperate. “Please,” he whimpers against your neck, whole body shuddering when you press a thumb into his slit. “Please let me inside you. Please let me feel you.”
“Shhh.” You shush him, catching his bottom lip in your teeth. You will never deny him, and he has to feel it. He has to know. “Always.”
But you can read between the lines, can understand exactly what he’s asking for.
Know what he wants, what you both want.
Taehyung topples you both onto the bed, engulfs you with his body so that even if you tried to look anywhere else, he’s the only thing you can see. He kisses you and kisses you and kisses you. As if you’ll disappear the next time he blinks, as if he can’t get enough. He grinds his cock down hard against you, swallowing your gasps and working you both up to such a degree that you almost cum, just like that. Less than a minute, but you’ve been teetering on the edge for months, a bow taut and primed to snap.
The first push of him bare has you keening, has you scratching red marks down his back. And he’s no better, entire body vibrating and just flat out babbling when he finally feels the warm grip of you without a barrier. “So wet, feel so fucking good. So fucking good for me, baby, always so good.”
“Holy shit,” you gasp, desperately rocking your hips against his. Mouth slack as experience has him expertly hitting that spot inside you again and again that makes you see stars. “Oh my god—“
“So good, and mine. Mine,” he groans, and you’re not sure who he’s even talking to. He probably isn’t either, the velvet heat of you pulling words from his tongue, but after a particularly delicious thrust has you letting out a whine, you see the fog leave his eyes, just a little. Focus now entirely on you. “Whose pussy is this?” he asks, tone deceptively mild. But the way he’s circling his hips is understandably distracting, and when he realizes you’re already too fucked out to answer properly, he grabs you by the chin and leans his forehead against yours. Demands you answer him. “Who does this pussy belong to?”
“You,” you pant out. “You. Yours. Always yours.” And as familiar as this all is, as many times as you’ve done these exact things over the months, it all feels achingly different this time. Somehow much more intense, somehow much more worshipful.
Taehyung groans, his efforts doubling as his oncoming end has him starting to properly rail you deep into the mattress. Between his thumb pressing into your clit and his mouth laving attention across your neck, it doesn’t take long for you to be firmly pushed off the edge with a drawn-out moan, convulsing around him and easily dragging him with you.
And, with two particularly rough thrusts that make the headboard rattle against the wall, he paints your insides a hot white.
You lay beneath him for a while, still contentedly stuffed full of him. Still gleefully receiving the kisses he hasn’t stopped peppering you with.
“There’s been no one else, you know,” he murmurs against your fevered skin. “Just you. Only you.”
Emotion blooms within you, seeping from your ribcage and trickling everywhere else. “And only you,” you say softly, his resulting smile so blinding and affectionate that you’re filled to the brim with love. Just completely overflowing with it, fighting the sudden burning behind your eyes.
Tae doesn’t say anything, but he doesn’t have to. Just presses his lips into the few tears that escape and holds you in the quiet.
Your fingers dance down the damp skin of his back, idle, as if memorizing every bump of his spine. But the peaceful moment is broken when a chance brush of against one of his asscheeks has him letting out a yelp, jolting at the unexpected sting.
You snort out a laugh, unbidden. There’s definitely going to be a bruise later.
“It’s not funny,” he insists, smiling despite himself. His smile only widens as you keep laughing, unable to stop once you started. “I warned you I broke it—hey! I’m suffering over here, it’s not funny!”
The voicemail sits, completely and utterly forgotten for a couple days.
To be honest, you both are a bit too busy with other…activities to pay it any mind.
“Hey Tae, It’s Jisoo. Um, I was hoping to catch you because I really didn’t want to do this over text or anything. But, um, while I’ve had a good time getting to know you, I think it might be best if we go our separate ways. If I’m being honest, I’m getting the sense that you’re not really interested in building anything between us anyway, and, frankly, I don’t want to waste any more of our time. I hope you find what you’re looking for. Happy New Year.”
“Run me my money,” Jungkook says calmly, and you blink, completely unprepared for that response.
You’re at Seokjin’s again, your group of friends gathered together to bring in the new year. For some reason, you had found yourself a little nervous for this moment, a little nervous to tell your friends about you and Tae. Well, nervous isn’t quite right—restless might be a better word. Excited and restless. You hadn’t been completely sure how they would react when you finally dropped the bomb, but now, as you watch the rest of your friends reluctantly but dutifully pull out their wallets, you know this definitely hadn’t been on your list of possibilities.
Your jaw drops at the audacity. “I know you motherfuckers did not just bet on me.”
“No, no,” Hoseok assures you, and you feel better for just a moment until he continues, “We bet on both of you.”
Your head whips towards Taehyung, but he’s busy popping a mini quiche into his mouth and looking more amused than anything else. As if he had fully expected some light New Year’s gambling regarding your relationship status to occur.
“We’ve all just been waiting for the two of you to crack,” Namjoon admits, sourly slapping a few bills into Jungkook’s hand. “But we thought it would happen next year.”
“Not me!” Jungkook says gleefully. “Pay up, buttercup!”
Yoongi grumbles under his breath, shaking his head at you. He glances at the clock and back, expression simply oozing disappointment. “You couldn’t have waited fifteen minutes?” he sighs.
“Excuse me?” you balk, blood pressure steadily rising.
Wisely, Taehyung steps in front of you before your dumb friends who you love very much can get you riled up enough to start throwing hands. He’s laughing, and it’s warm. It’s right. And when he leans down to kiss you before the ball drops and during and forever after, you don’t care one bit about the obnoxious clapping and hooting that results.
Hell, if you weren’t so preoccupied, you’d clap for your own damn self.
collab masterlist | my masterlist
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