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you and me, we grew under a bad sun

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It doesn’t seem to get dark these days anymore. Namjoon sits on the balcony of his apartment and watches as the sun hovers menacingly over an eerily quiet city. Every day feels restlessly long, the sun always a hint above the horizon, even though Namjoon’s stupidly expensive watch says it’s three in the morning and should, by all other standards, be dark as hell.

A simple calculative mistake, they’d said on the news. Scientists miscalculated the trajectory of the asteroid which hit the south side of the United States, which then ricocheted their planet out of orbit and into the slow, inexorable pull of the sun. Everyone who hadn’t died already from the impact and the resulting debris was going to die. They didn’t say that on the news, but Namjoon filled in the gaps. They’re on a collision course. It’s inevitable.

“Hyung,” Taehyung says, breaking through Namjoon’s contemplation. Namjoon turns and looks. There are dark shadows under Taehyung’s eyes. He’s not wearing a shirt, just a pair of Namjoon’s threadbare boxers. In the weak light, Namjoon can see the marks of his mouth and his hands on Taehyung’s waist, his neck, his thighs.

It’s been getting harder and harder to sleep. If it’s not the relentless sunlight, it’s the choking heat. Electricity cut out a few days ago, and they’re running on a generator that they’d stolen from a hospital. A hospital. Namjoon tells himself that there was no one inside when they took it—all emergency patients were moved elsewhere weeks ago—but that didn’t stop the guilt from rising up like bile in his throat.

“Taehyung-ah,” Namjoon says, his voice rusty from disuse. “What are you doing up?”

“Woke up and you were gone,” Taehyung says, stifling a yawn. His hair is sticking up stubbornly at the back, and he scratches blearily at the side of his head. “I was… worried.”

Namjoon hears what Taehyung didn’t say. I was worried you left. I was worried you left me alone. It’s just the two of them now. Namjoon would never have asked the rest of them to stay, not when there was a possibility their families were alive. Jimin and Jeongguk caught a ride from a nice couple headed to Busan. Yoongi headed south with Hoseok and his sister. Seokjin’s family swooped him up after a week of uncertainty. Before he left, Seokjin grabbed both Namjoon and Taehyung’s hands.

“Come with us,” he said, desperately. But Namjoon turned him down. He’d just be in the way, and Namjoon wasn’t sure if he could pretend not to be jealous. His family had been vacationing when the asteroid hit. Bahamas. His little sister’s graduation gift.

Namjoon’s not sure why Taehyung turned Seokjin’s offer down, though. He’s not sure why Taehyung is still here. His family is safe, waiting for him in Daegu, and Namjoon knows with painful clarity how much Taehyung adores his family. It doesn’t make sense why he’s here, in an abandoned Seoul, in their dorm that’s too big for just the two of them.

“Sorry,” Namjoon says. “I was thinking. You should go back to bed.”

Taehyung shakes his head. “I’m up now anyway,” he says, rubbing his eyes and lifting his arms above his head in a luxurious stretch. “Can I join you?”

He always asks, and Namjoon always appreciates it. “Sure,” he says, and turns his head back again to the hazy outline of the sun on the horizon. This is the only time of the endless day that’s bearable. Most of the time, the two of them hide out in the apartment when the sun is out in full force. Namjoon likes this time the best, because he can go out and breathe in the still air and try and remember what it was like to be alive.

Taehyung’s body is warm when he drapes himself over Namjoon’s back, his arms coming around to encircle Namjoon’s waist. Namjoon leans back into the touch slightly, even though they’re both grimy and sticky with sweat. Taehyung’s chest is solid and broad, and Namjoon feels safe there, where he can feel Taehyung’s heartbeat.

They stand there together for what feels like ages, but the next time Namjoon checks his watch, it’s only been ten minutes. Taehyung used to fidget, a long time ago. Restless energy, forcibly contained in one human body. Namjoon used to admire it and resent it in equal parts. Back then, it translated into loud, overeager shouting and hard hitting dance moves. Now, it translates into frantic, hot hands on skin, Taehyung’s teeth sinking into Namjoon’s shoulder, his mouth desperate and wanting on Namjoon’s. Namjoon understands that; it’s the end of the world, and it feels like they’re the only two people left.

Sometimes, Taehyung says he loves Namjoon. He whispers it into Namjoon’s back, the spot between his shoulder blades he can’t reach. It’s in his eyes, his smile. The way he grinds out Namjoon’s name when they’re fucking, his body so sensitive under Namjoon’s clumsy touch.

Namjoon pretends not to see it. He pretends Taehyung is convenient, and nothing more. It’s easier than talking about it. Taehyung doesn’t talk about it either.

(Sometimes Namjoon thinks he loves Taehyung too. Namjoon waits until Taehyung is asleep to think it, but like the sun edging along the horizon, the thought is always there at the edge of his consciousness. Sometimes Namjoon thinks that he’d love Taehyung, even if they weren’t the last two people in Seoul. The feeling growing in his chest, shy and warm and fond, surely means something. If only they’d had more time—Namjoon can’t help but think, like the planet and the sun, they would have eventually crashed together. After all, Namjoon knows something about inevitability.)