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FOUR CONTINENTS CHAMPIONSHIPS,  GANGNEUNG, 2017

 

 

“Are you listening to me?

Jungkook hums, eyes still closed, headphones still in place, covering his ears and blasting Drake loud and hard.

“You're not, asshole.” Namjoon slaps him on the back of the head and the headphones fall down on his lap from the force of the jolt.

“Shit, you wanna kill me or something?” Jungkook groans, massaging his neck and getting his headphones back, he turns off the music.

“I want you to listen to me, brat.”

“Well I'm listening now.”

The plane is quiet, just an underground buzzing, business class is always quieter than economy, there's the ticking of a laptop's keyboard.

“I asked you if you've watched that video.”

Jungkook grimaces at the memory, but nods anyway.

“And?”

“And what?” Jungkook asks, frowning.

“And how the fuck are you so calm?” Namjoon shakes his head, eyes blown wide “I don't see you focusing at all.”

“I'm not competing in three hours Joons, I'm competing in two days.” he retorts, pouting slithgly “I'll have all the time in the world to focus.”

“This ain't last year's World Championship where the only competition you had was Jimin, kid.” Namjoon says “This is Kim Taehyung we're talking about. This is gold medal at 2014 Sochi Kim Taehyung. Two times World Champion Kim Taehyung.”

“And broken ankle that kept him from competing for a whole year Kim Taehyung.” Jungkook grins “One whole year without competing makes you weak, Namjoon.”

Namjoon scoffs, crossing his arms to his chest and shaking his head like he can't believe what he's just heard. That's the thing with Namjoon, if he doesn't like a thing you say it doesn't matter how true that thing is, he's still gonna be a stubborn asshole about it.

“Like a year off can do something to Kim Taehyung.” Namjoon rubs the back of his neck “Like, you've seen that video and you still think that just because he didn't skate for an year he ain't competition?”

“I didn't say he's not competition. Everyone's competition.”

Jungkook has seen that video more times than he likes to admit, but Namjoon doesn't have to know that. He knows why everyone loves Kim Taehyung, he's fucking perfect when he skates. Not one error. Not a bad landing. Well, except that time he landed so bad he broke his ankle, but that was a one time thing. But the perfection around Taehyung is exactly what doesn't worry Jungkook: Kim Taehyung skates either like he was born for it or like a robot. And that's what judges like, perfection, accuracy. From the video he's seen, Taehyung skates without passion, and passion is exactly what Jungkook does not lack. He tells Namjoon that and Namjoon laughs.

“No passion.” he mutters “You talk like this just 'cause you didn't see him perform right there on the fucking ice rink. You'll change your mind and when you will it's gonna be too late.”

“Whatever.”

“He's elegant, Jungkook. You?” Namjoon grimaces “Not so much.”

Jungkook turns to him, clicking his tongue.

“Wow, thanks coach, that's exactly what an athlete needs to hear so that he feels good before a competition.”

Jungkook decides to train his attention on his phone. Airplane's wifi, somehow, is decent and he scans through the messages he hasn't read yet. His mom asking him to call her the moment he lands in Gangneung, his dad telling him he already set up the tv to watch the event even though there are still two days to go and, finally, Jimin.

“Jimin and Yoongi will wait for us at the airport.” Jungkook says and Namjoon hums.

They then slip off in a quiet slumber, sleeping off the remaining three hours of flight and fucking hell, Jungkook will hate himself for this when the jet lag will kick in. He should've went with the rest of the athletes who left three days ago for training but, as always, he's too much of a stubborn idiot. Then again, the other athletes hate him, so.

 

“It's because you're an asian american and you're younger and better than them” Namjoon told him “They can't stand you 'cause your coach is asian as well and 'cause the Four Continents takes place in Korea this year so everybody thinks that you're advantaged when, really, you aren't. It doesn't matter though, you didn't become an ice skater to make friends. You're here to win”.

 

 

As they wait for their luggages, Namjoon is on his phone, reading some articles in korean and Jungkook kinda hates himself for never learning that fucking language. It's too hard though. Who needs all those vowels anyways.

“They're calling you the golden maknae.” Namjoon says, his voice muffled by the face mask.

“The fuck's that mean?”

“It's like the nickname you have in America. Golden rookie. Golden Maknae. Maknae as in young. It's fitting.”

Jungkook groans.

“Nicknames are the worst.”

“You get them if you become an elité. Why aren't you more like Jimin? Jimin likes his nickname.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes. Of course Jimin likes his nickname, his nickname is almost cool: The Ice Dancer. It suits him.

“That's because it makes sense. Like, I can't be the golden rookie forever at some point I won't be a rookie anymore”

“Oh trust me, you're gonna stick with that nickname.” Namjoon pauses “Kim Taehyung likes his nickname. Ice fairy.”

“That's like the shittiest nickname ever, I'll stick with Golden Rookie.”

“Allright, whatever kid. Goddamn you're salty. Who are you, Yoongi?”

“Very funny.”

“About Taehyung-”

Jungkook groans “Fucking hell, Joon, do you have a boner for him or something?”

“I gotta ask you a favor.” Jungkook can see Namjoon smiling under the mouth mask “This time aim for gold.”

Jungkook frowns.

“I always aim for gold.”

“Nah, you say you do, but you don't. You just like gold. I'm asking you, this time, actually aim for gold. This way you'll probably win silver.” Namjoon nods to himself “The only way you get silver when Kim Taehyung competes it to aim for gold.”

“Thanks for the trust.”

“If you actually get a silver I'll consider it a fucking gold.”

“Our luggages are here.” Jungkook stands up and Namjoon follows him quickly, stuffing his phone in the pocket of his jacket.

 

 

 

At the arrivals, Jungkook is greeted with flashes from journalist's cameras and screaming girls who hold signs with his name on it. He knows his fanbase is big in Korea and he smiles at them, bowing even, 'cause he might be an asshole but he's a thankful asshole. He has freaking fansites in Korea, and they even send him gifts. Expensive gifts. Of course he's thankful.

And true to his words, Jimin is waiting for him a few feet away, waving his arms to be spotted and trying to make Yoongi wave his arms as well, failing miserably.

“Kookie, my bro!” Jimin screams, british accent coloring his words.

Next to him, Yoongi buries his sleepy face in the crook of Jimin's neck.

Jungkook quickly runs up to them, dragging his suitcase and smiling happily as soon as Jimin gets his arms around him, squeezing him in one of his bone crushing hugs.

“Goddamn, you might be tiny as fuck but your arms keep getting bigger.” Jungkook chokes out and Jimin lets him free, giggling.

“I missed you Kook, it's been a while! Yoongi missed you too, he's just too tired to speak. Jetlag. Namjoon! It's been so long!”

Namjoon quickly hugs Jimin and then gives a silent salute to Yoongi, well aware that the grey haired man is far too sleepy to actually engage in social activities.

“Come on, we got a taxi waiting outside.” Yoongi finally lets his voice be heard, probably just because he wants to get out of the airport as soon as he possibly can.

“We're staying at your same hotel.” Jimin tells him as they make their way out of the busy Gangneung airport.

“That's cool. We haven't seen each other in ages.” Jungkook says.

“Yeah, you didn't come see me at the last Europeans.” Jimin pouts, grabbing Yoongi's hand and holding it tightly “Asshole.”

“I was busy, I'm sorry. But congrats on the gold. Totally deserved it, I've seen your performance live. It was amazing.”

Jimin smiles proudly.

“I was fucking good.” he says and Yoongi hums in agreement “England should kiss my ass.”

“England already kisses your ass.” Jungkook says, Jimin's grin only widens.

“True.”

 

 

 

The moment they get checked in at the hotel they split up in their rooms and start undoing their luggages.

Jungkook takes out of his suitcase some clothes to wear for training the next day and he takes a quick shower, washing away the exhaustion of the flight.

Jimin knocks on his door a few minutes after, happily slumping on his bed and sighing heavily.

“So,” Jungkook begins, laying down next to Jimin “What's new?”

Jimin stretches his neck.

“Working on my new choreo for World's championship, Yoongi made the best track.” he says “Apart from that not much. It's always the same, training, training, sex and training. Oh!” Jimin claps his hands together “We're living together now.”

“You kidding me? With Yoongi?” Jungkook asks and Jimin nods “Shit, that's huge.”

“I know, right?” Jimin smiles “It's so good though. Really, it's the best.”

Jungkook snorts.

“It's the best 'cause you two are like, soulmates or something, otherwise it wouldn't be.”

“Sex is still fucking good too. Like, it gets better everytime, it's fucking ridiculous.”

“Fucking TMI, mate.” Jungkook laughs “But I'm glad you're here, man. Thank you for coming to see me.”

Jimin slaps him on the arm.

“Don't make it gay.” he says “Besides, I'm not here just for you.”

“Well now I'm fucking hurt. Who else besides me is worth your time?”

Jimin rolls his eyes “Literally anyone. But I'm here for Tae as well.”

“Tae?”

“Taehyung.”

“Wait.” Jungkook props himself up on his elbows ”Kim Taehyung?”

Jimin nods.

“We're friends.” he explains “Like, best friends forever and all that.”

“I thought I was your best friend.”

“What, a person can't have more than one best friend?”

“Besides, since when are you friends with Kim Taehyung?”

“Since we were juniors. Like, way before I met you. But you and I met when Tae got injured so you never met him at competitions and stuff.”

“I can't believe you're best friends with my only competition.”

At that Jimin laughs wildly, eyes disappearing and cheeks tinting with pink.

“What's so funny?”

“You thinking that Taehyung is your competition, that's what's funny!” Jimin says in between laughters “Like, you think you're on his same level?! Please! You're good but not good enough to even start considering Tae competition. He's like, fifty spans above you.”

“Thanks, asshole. You sound like Namjoon.”

Jimin hums, still giggling a little “Namjoon's a wise man.”

“Fuck off.”

“You better aim for gold if you wanna score a silver.”

“Now you sound exactly like Namjoon.”

Jimin chuckles and then sits up straight, pulling back his black hair.

“I say we hit the bar.” Jimin says “What time does training start?”

“Nine in the morning. Can't get drunk.” Jungkook sighs “I get into a country where I can drink and I still can't.”

“I'll buy you some strawberry juice.”

“Literally fuck you.”

“Also, Taehyung said he wants to meet you.”

Curiosity is a bitch. When it comes to Kim Taehyung, curiosity is the most expensive slut, and Jungkook has always been weak to expensive. That's why he agrees.

 

 

 

When Kim Taehyung finally shows up to the bar, two hours later, he's nothing like Jungkook pictured him in his mind.
Kim Taehyung on the ice is cold just like the rink, he's perfect, elegant and distant.

Kim Taehyung outside the rink presents himself in the form of a guy that manages to bump into three people as he makes his way to Junkook and Jimin, who are sitting on the stools.

Kim Taehyung outside the rink presents himself with bright eyes and tan skin, with deep red hair that look too well on a human being and with the weirdest smile Jungkook has ever seen on anyone's face.

“I swear to God, Jimin, I almost shat myself today.” it's the first thing he says, his voice deep and warm, tinged with his accent “And not in the I was scared way, but in the literal sense. I couldn't find my room and I had to take a dump, I was almost crying.”

Jimin smiles and points at Jungkook.

“Jungkook, meet Taehyung. Taehyung, meet Jungkook.”

Taehyung trains his gaze on Jungkook, smile still in place.

“Jeon Jungkook?” he asks.

“That's me.”

“I've been wanting to meet you!” he exclaims loudly as he sits next to him on a free stool “Damn, you look even more buff in real life.”

“What?”

Jungkook sends a puzzled look to Jimin, but his friend is just grinning at the scene.

Taehyung turns to the barman and speaks in korean, ordering something to drink, he turns to Jungkook.

“Can you drink?”

“No.”

“Shame. I would've bought you a drink. Training?”

“Yeah.” Jungkook pauses “Don't you have training as well?”

“I work better with a hangover.” he smiles at the barman as he slips him what looks like Tequila “And under pressure.”

Jungkook nods.

“I mean, aren't we always under pressure?” he asks and Taehyung seems to think about it.

“Jimin isn't.” he replies, nodding in the black haired direction.

“True.” Jimin props his chin on the palm of his hand “That's the difference between you two and I. I don't stress, it's fucking useless.”

“No, it's just that you're shit when you're stressed out.” Taehyung retorts.

“That's also true. You gonna compete at World's Championship?”

“Of course I am.” Tahyung grins “Someone's gotta beat your ass.”

“Keep dreaming bitch.”

“Someone's confident.” Jungkook says with a smirk and Jimin smacks him on the shoulder.

“I always am. That's because I'm great. I did beat your ass at last year's Worlds.”

Jungkook grimaces.

“A cross I will have to bear 'till my dying days.”

Jimin looks like he's about to say something but he stops the moment he feels his phone buzzing in the backpocket of his jeans. He fishes it out of them and smiles as he sees who's calling.

“I'd stay here and roast your ass but Yoongi's calling, which means that sex is calling me.” Jimin slids off the stool and blows them a kiss “Have fun losers.”

Taehyung flips him off and Jimin leaves with a satisfied smile. Next to Jungkook, Taehyung sighs.

“Hate seeing him leave, but love watching him go.”

“Dude.” Jungkook pulls a face “Gross.”

“That ass ain't gross. That ass is a masterpiece.”

“You'd better pray Yoongi doesn't hear you.”

Taehyung knits his eyebrows together and leans in a little.

“He did hear me once. It was so bad, I thought he was gonna kill me.”

Jungkook concedes him a low chuckle and he enjoys the way Taehyung's eyes light up with mute satisfaction.

“So.” he says, pulling back red locks “Jeon Jungkook. Golden maknae.”

“Shitty nickname.”

Taehyung hums, he drinks and he licks the liquor off his lips. Jungkook's eyes follow the movement.

“I agree. There's been a lot of talk about you, you know?”

“Don't read articles about me, feels weird.”

Taehyung grins.

“Well, I read them.” he continues, gulping down more Tequila “They say you're my competition this year.”

“Is that so?”

“It's funny.”

“What is?”

Taehyung's smile disappears and leaves him with a blank expression and cold eyes.

“It's funny that they think I consider you competition.” Taehyung cocks his head to the side “'Cause honey, trust me, I don't.”

The words sink in slowly in Jungkook's head. The moment they fully hit him Jungkook knows he's fucking pissed. He lifts his chin up, eyeing Taehyung in what he hopes can pass off as a threatening look.

“You're so far up your ass you don't aknowledge other athletes?”

Taehyung shakes his head. “Oh no, I aknowledge them. I aknowledge Jimin, now he's competition. You? You're good. Of course you are, you wouldn't be here otherwise. But you're no competition.”

“Why? Cuz I'm a rookie?”

“Fuck rookies. The word rookie doesn't mean shit when you start competing for real.” Taehyung presses his lips in a thin line “You might be great when you're competing with the others, but when I'm in the game too you are just good. And good isn't enough against me.”

“Yet here you are.” Jungkook smiles “Speaking to me. Trying to scare me or some shit. To me it looks like you're the one who feels threatened.”

“Oh, you're just too cute. Okay then, let me put it down this way.”

“Enlighten me.”

Taehyung leans even closer and his lips are wet with alcohol, Jungkook can feel his breathing breaking on his face.

“You and I are arrogant motherfuckers. Every skater is, ice skating is competitive and hard and fucking painful, so we need arrogance to survive. But here's the thing: I'm arrogant 'cause I've been competing since I was thirteen and I have so many golds back home that I lost count. You're arrogant 'cause you're so far up your ass that when you speak only shit comes out of your mouth.”

Jungkook swallows down the wave of rage, he still feels his face flushing.

“You've never seen me skate before, you don't know what you're talking about.”

“Oh, but I did see you skate. When you lost to Jimin.” Taehyung's smile is so fake Jungkook wants to punch it off his face “You only have silvers in your bag, honey. Silver means shit.”

Jungkook knows better than to say that when he lost to Jimin it was because he was a fucking wreck. Because his nerves failed him. Because he lost the momentum for that fucking rotation and failed a Lutz. They would just sound like lame excuses and he's not gonna give that satisfaction to Taehyung.

“I've seen you skate as well.” Jungkook says “And let me tell you, you're lacking.”

“Lacking.” Taehyung repeats amused.

“Lacking passion. You might be perfect, but there's no real feeling to what you do.”

Taehyung frowns, looking genuinely puzzled.

“Are you shitting me?”

“No.”

“Wow. You're blind as fuck.” Taehyung stands up from the stool and tosses some money on the counter “Well, this was fun. Can't wait to see you on the rink. Since you're here, buy yourself some juice, Jeon.”

And like that, Taehyung leaves, this time his stride is confident enough to make people step back to let him pass.

And Jungkook knows that he just lost this round.

 

 

 

“You're landing too fucking hard.” Namjoon says “You wanna pop a bone or something?”

Jungkook sighs, sliding on the ice towards Namjoon, who's standing just outside the rink, leaning on the topper.

“What's gotten into you?” the man asks him as he hands him a bottle of water and a towel “You never put so much energy into training.”

“I'm pissed.” Jungkook replies, dabbing the towel on his neck “I'm just... venting I guess. In my own way.”

“Well, you better fucking stop “venting”. Namjoon says, creating quotation marks with his fingers “Unless you wanna hurt yourself.”

Jungkook hums.

“I met Kim Taehyung yesterday.”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah.” he takes a sip of his water “He's a fucking prick.”

Namjoon frowns.

“Of course he is, he's the best.”

Jungkook pouts “Hey! You should tell me I'm the best! You're my coach!”

“And I'm no liar.”

“Whatever.” Jungkook puts the bottle of water on the ice and skates back to the center of the rink.

“Give me a Salchow kid, make it a quad, you're insecure on the landing.”

 

 

The next day goes in a blur. It's the first day of the Four Continents, the ice dancing pairs, the ladies and the pairs have their short programs and Jungkook wouldn't care if it weren't for the fucking opening ceremony.

The moment he's done with it, Jungkook is back on training.

That's all he has right now and that's all that matters. He's one with the ice, with the sound the blades make as he slides, the strain of his muscles when he takes off for the jumps, the way his whole body feels the hardness of the ice as he lands. There's always the landing, that's the only thing that scares a skater shitless. The landing. If the landing goes bad it doesn't matter how much rotation he had, how perfect his posture was, the landing is what matters.

The landing is always the scary part.

 

 

*

 

 

The thing about short programs is that everyone looks forward to them. A good short program can guarantee you a spot on the podium as much as it can kick you off of it.

Jungkook hates short programs.

There's still two hours before the men's programs, the ice dancing pairs are still competing right now with their frees and Jungkook is stretching, his team mates scattered around, warming up as well, chatting with their coaches and focusing.

“Be careful on the combination, yesterday you took too long between the Lutz and the Toe Loop.” Namjoon tells him, voice low “And for fuck's sake, Jungkook, the landing on the fucking Salchow.”

“I know.”

“It's always too narrow.”

“I know.”

“You can't risk going flat, you know that.”

“I know.” Jungkook sighs as he straightens up “I know, Namjoon.”

“Good.” he says “Kim is here.”

Jungkook glances at the spot where Namjoon is staring and, sure enough, Taehyung is there.

He easily smiles and nods at the other skaters, hands stuffed in the pockets of the sweatshirt he's wearing, Korean flag printed on the back. He looks so relaxed that Jungkook wants to puke. Behind him, a man follows him. A handsome man. Like, honest to God handsome, his face so perfect that Jungkook has to squint his eyes to be sure what he's seeing is real. He's tall, broad shoulders, pleasent smile on plump lips.

That's when he recognizes him.

“Isn't that Kim Seokjin?” Jungkook asks Namjoon.

“Yeah.” Namjoon clears his voice “That's him.”

“What's he doing here?”

“He's Kim's coach.”

Jungkook hums.

“Didn't you two compete against each other like five years ago?”

Namjoon sighs “We sure did.”

Seokjin is a former Hockey champion, just like Namjoon. Jungkook knows only because Namjoon told him about him once. Apparently, Kim Seokjin was known for looking like he's straight out of a Vogue cover but, once on the rink, he was fucking merciless. Jungkook's talking breaking bones kind of merciless.

Suddenly, Taehyung trains his gaze on Jungkook. The two stare at each other for a few seconds before Taehyung smiles and waves at him. Beside him, Seokjin grimaces and if looks could kill Namjoon would be laying on the ground with his heart frozen.

“Shit.” Jungkook mutters “Guess you two weren't on good terms.”

“Yeah, right.”

Jungkook looks back on Namjoon and slowly realization hits him and his eyes widen.

“No way.” Jungkook whispers “You and Seokjin were a thing?”

Namjoon grimaces and waves him off.

“Not a thing.” he says “More like ' we are on opposite teams but the locker rooms are always shared so when the others leave we fuck in the showers' ”.

“Shit.”

“Yeah. It's a long story, you don't wanna know.”

Jungkook snorts.

“Damn right I don't. Last thing I need before a competition is imagining you doing nasty shit with Kim's coach.”

Namjoon slaps him on the back of the neck, before Jungkook can protest Namjoon glares at him “Instead of shit talking, start focusing.” he crosses his arms “Remember, you're aiming for gold.”

Jungkook looks back at Taehyung, who's making his way to the rink. If he wasn't aiming for gold before, now he surely is.

 

 

 

During warm ups, Jungkook doesn't look at Taehyung not even once. He minds his own business, practices his jumps, feels oddly confident on his landing, knows his muscles aren't too strained from the training of the previous days. He feels good. Sometimes he hears the audience calling his name, or other athelete's, mostly Taehyung's name. He's not surprised, Taehyung is competing in his own home, in his country. He's Korea's pride and favorite jewel, almost everyone is there for him. Jungkook doesn't look at him, not even once.

They get called out of the rink, Jungkook skates his way to the boards and gets out, immediately putting the blade protectors Namjoon is holding for him on.

He goes sit on one of the benches, puts on his sweatshirt and straightens the black fabric of his pants.

“Okay.” Namjoon sits beside him, taking a deep breath “First is China.”

Jungkook nods. He looks around in the audience, looking for Jimin's face. He finds him sitting on the reserved seats, speaking with Yoongi, pointing discreetly at some of the athletes.

From the speakers, a woman announces the first competitor and Jungkook decides it's the right moment to tune it all out. It's important to check the results of the competition, but Jungkook doesn't need to see their programs. It just adds stress.

China lands badly at some point, if the gasps of the audience and then following claps of encouragement say anything, in the end the young man leaves the short programs with 42 points.

Jungkook closes his eyes for a few minutes. Some of his team mates go on the rink. Alec isn't surprised with the mediocre outcome, he didn't have much time to prepare, for him it was already enough being able to compete. Joshua is good, but his program is quite simple, just some fancy steps so that he can do all elements required.

Then, it's his turn.

Jungkook is on the rink, Namjoon behind the board, talking to him quickly and low.

“You focus on doing all you have to do, tune out the noises, easy on the jump, careful on the landing, do not go flat. You hear me?”

Jungkook nods. Namjoon pats his shoulder “Aim for gold, kid.”

Jungkook takes a deep breath then he skates away from the boards and takes a lap on the ice, opening his arms in greeting to the audience, he drowns a little in the cheering, let them fuel him, he stops in the center, judges in front of him, bows, then puts himself in position, one arm up, palm stretched out, the other arm snaked around his waist, he closes his eyes.

The only moment a skater hears the music is when it starts. From the on, the music means shit. A skater knows the coreography by sheer muscle memory, the sound the ice makes when the blade glides on it is louder than any melody and the only song he actually needs.

His body starts moving, the first elements that are there just for beauty, just choreo, just fancy twists and flailing, really.

Jungkook skates, the step sequence is next. He gets into a spiral position, lifts his leg behind straight, the air breaks on his face, serpentine step sequence ends fast. That's the thing. Shorts are fast. Two minutes and half at max. No more.

Jungkook knows that at this point the music is reaching the first climax, so he sets up for his jump, muscles already tensing, he takes off. Triple axel, he lands on the right edge, good rotation, good speed. He knows the audience is clapping, he keeps going.

Next step sequence, he lets his body follow the memory, mohawk easy enough, he quickly links it to his combination, he sets the jumps up. Double Loop, triple Salchow following immediately, barely letting his foot touch the ice in between. This time he can hear the cheerings, he guesses the jumps were good. They felt good to him at least.

He feels sweat already cooling off on his face because of the cold air breaking on his skin, heart hammering, breathing heavy. It's normal.

Donut spin, he grabs the edge of his blade, pulls his leg bent, spins until he changes foot, does it again, he's off on the ice again. Fifty seconds to go.

It's quiet when he does his last jump, he has enough speed on his side that if he lands it well he knows he already has a spot on the podium. If he doesn't land it, well, maybe there's still hope. Quadruple Axel, he spins, lands. And it is fucking good, he can feel it in his muscles, he can hear it in the loud cheers.

He ends it all with the Layback, spinning around with his back perfectly arched, arms in the air, he stops in position at the exact moment the song ends.

Silence for a second, then all the noises come back at him. The screams of the audience, the beating of his heart echoing in his head, his chest heaving with ragged breathing. Jungkook licks his dry lips, blink away drops of sweat, he smiles and bows for them, waving with his hands. Plushies are, as usual, being thrown at him, he grabs one of Iron Man and kisses it, he's pretty sure a girl screamed so hard that whoever is beside her is deaf by now.

Jungkook makes his way out of the rink, Namjoon is already waiting for him with a huge smile and a bottle of water in a hand, towel and sweatshirt in the other.

Jungkook puts on the protectors on the blades, and shit they're cold as fuck, then follows Namjoon on wobbly legs.

“That was good.” he says “That was real fucking good.”

“Thanks.” Jungkook replies, a little breathless, he makes a v sign at a camera that zooms on him.

The Kiss and Cry is every skater's nightmare. It doesn't matter if they say they're not afraid of it, they're lying. Everyone is afraid of it.

They sit on the couch, waiting for the results, a camera in front of them, Jungkook smiles at it and waves before he turns to Namjoon.

“Jumps were great.” he says “Really good landing, I was impressed. You went a little easy with the step sequence, but you never went flat and I think the judges loved your interpretation.” Namjoon nods almost to himself “Real good, Kook.” A pause “You could've avoided the smirk.”

Jungkook shrugs “Felt smug.”

“You looked smug. I swear I saw a kid fainting at some point. But you were good.”

Jungkook allows himself to breathe. Namjoon never lies to him, if he fucks something up he tells him. So if he praises him, it means he deserves it.

A voice announces the arrival of the results. Jungkook looks at the monitor in front of him, holding his breath.

The leading athelete had 72 points. His own score comes up.

“Holy shit.” Namjoon whispers, Jungkook stares for a few seconds at the number 98 before it sinks in.

He can't help the smile that overtakes his face, he claps a little, looks at Namjoon who still doesn't seem to believe it. As a side note, he's pretty sure he heard Jimin's voice screaming “YAS BITCH”.

But that's okay. Because with that 98, Jungkook is the leading man.

 

 

Taehyung is up.

Jungkook looks at him, on the other side of the rink, speaking to Seokjin and another man that he just now notices, all sunny smiles and straight thin nose.

“Who's that?” Jungkook asks, Namjoon looks up from his phone and squints his eyes.

“Jung Hoseok. Taehyung's choreographer.” he replies.

Taehyung nods once then he starts skating on the rink, arms raised, waving at the cheering crowd, huge boxy smile on his lips, red hair kept away from his brow thanks to a white bandana, Jungkook's pretty sure it's white lace. Because Taehyung rarely wears colors that arent white or soft pastel shades. And today, it's white.

A blouse that is loose on his body but a v cut so deep Jungkook is surprised they can't see his nipples, white pants that cling perfectly to his legs. Taehyung is slim for a skater, slimmer than most, but with every push Jungkook sees muscles tensing under the fabric of the pants. He looks like ice.

He puts himself in position, legs crossed, he covers his eyes with his hand, lets the other arm fall behind his back.

As the music begins, Jungkook arches an eyebrow.

“Fucking Howl's Moving Castle?” he mutters, Namjoon snorts.

The thing is, Jungkook has seen Taehyung skate. He's seen the routine that gave him the gold at Sochi.

On video.

But now he's here, close to the rink, freezing his ass off, and now he can see.

Robotic, that's what he said.

There is absolutely nothing robotic about the way Taehyung moves. Everything is simply perfect, but with such a warmth in his movements Jungkook feels his breath stucking in his lungs.

Taehyung moves with an elegance that Jungkook never thought could be achieved, and that's probably because it cannot be achieved. Taehyung was born with it. His steps are flawless, smooth in the transictions, his smile nothing but gorgeus and smug in the best way possible.

First combination, quadruple Axel, double loop. It's effortless. He lands with no weight. Perfect in every way.

As the music starts speeding, the look in Taehyung's eyes is different, happier, maybe even playful, it suits the song so well it almost pisses Jungkook off. Taehyung's spins are graceful, fast as hell, he does them without even blinking. Taehyung then leans down, muscles tensing up, a leg perfectly bent over the other as his hand touches the ice and he glides on the rink, posture perfect, back arched just in the right way.

He's up again, sets up his next jump, some connecting steps before he jumps in a quad Salchow that is so high, so fast, Jungkook swears he's gonna land on his butt. He doesn't. He lands it perfectly, as usual. And if it couldn't get any crazier, he barely gives himself a moment of set up before he lands a triple Axel.

Final flying spin, a Biellmann. His back is arched almost painfully, leg perfectly bent, foot touching the back of his head. Then he's unmoving, perfectly still in his closing position, his hands around his neck, chin tilted up.

As the crowd erupts in screams and claps, Taehyung smiles at them, chest heaving, face flushed, still looking beautiful. He jumps excitedly, clapping his hands along, bowing deep to his fans.

Jungkook is happy he aimed for gold. Because like this he'll maybe get a silver.

And where there was spite in regards of Taehyung, now there's something else, something hot that burns hard, that clenches his chest.

Jungkook recognizes it as want.

 

Taehyung ends the short program with a 99, 8. He's in the lead now.

 

 

 

“I don't know what I was expecting.” Jungkook whispers.

Jimin is sitting beside him on the balcony of his hotel room, plastic chairs uncomfortable, but air nice and crisp, Jimin has a cigarette between his lips.

“You should've expected perfection.” Jimin replies “And that's exactly what he gave you.”

Jungkook glares at him “Can you not smoke with me right here.”

“Oh, shut up.” Jimin blows a cloud of smoke on his face “As if you don't smoke when you're off season.”

“Well, you dickhead, I'm competing on sunday.”

“And now is friday night, so shut the fuck up.” Jimin grins “Well, now you saw Kim Taehyung skating. You got a boner?”

“Fuck you.”

“Dude, I saw the way you were looking at him during his routine.” Jimin shakes his head, ash falling in the ashtray after a flick of his finger “You wanted to fuck him right there on the rink.”

“That would be so painful.” Jungkook grimaces “And cold as fuck.”

“It was a metaphor you- why am I bothering?” Jimin grins at him “You did good, Jungkook. Real fucking good, I couldn't believe my eyes. You improved so much, it was amazing.”

Jungkook smiles a little “I still have to monitor the routine, but I think I did well.”

“Trust me, you did more than well. Yoongi even cheered.”

“Well, shit.”

“I know, that's massive.” Jimin chuckles “Speaking of Yoongi, he's probably waiting for me at the bar with Tae. I guess you're not gonna come with?”

Jungkook shakes his head “I'm fucking spent, training starts late tomorrow so I'll sleep as much as I can.”

“Okay.” Jimin stands up from the chair and ruffles his hair “You were great, Kook.”

 

 

Jungkook spends his saturday practicing, careful as to not sprain a muscle or do any kind of stupid shit that could cost him his spot on the podium.

The pairs have their free programs, so do the ladies. He hears from Namjoon that Mai Mihara, Japan, wins the gold for the ladies singles, China's pair wins their own gold. Two golds in a row.

Jungkook can't even begin to imagine what that must feel like.

 

 

Then Sunday comes and Jungkook is trying really hard to breathe. It all comes down to the free program. He can still score a gold, not even two points divide him from Taehyung, he can do it. He's confident. He needs confidence.

He's lucky that, once again, his routine comes before Taehyung's, he knows he'd feel like shit if he saw what Taehyung can do again before he even steps on the ice.

Warm ups go in a blur, China's routine is so good Jungkook chokes for a moment, he's the one leading for now, with a score of 150. Jungkook knows he can do better, but he also knows Taehyung can as well.

Before he knows it, it's his moment.

“Okay.” Namjoon holds his wrists from behind the board “Don't overdoit, program is long, keep the jumps in the second half if you have enough stamina, don't fuck up the landing, don't go flat.”

“I know.”

“Now is the time to be smug as fuck, yeah?”

“Yeah.”

“Okay.” Namjoon squeezes his wrists “Aim for gold, Jungkook.”

He lets him go, Jungkook is on the center. Greetings, cheerings, position.

He likes this song, likes the crescendo of it, he tries his best to actually listen to it this time even if it's useless. The drag of the blades against the ice is all he hears.

He is smug. But, somehow, he tries to keep a certain elegance, the music almost forces him to, but he enjoys it. Jungkook knows for what he's famous, for the energetic jumps, for the sensual undertones, that's what he knows how to do best. So he does just that.

His spins are flawless, he feels them, his back is arched more than usual.

Somehow, even if the free program is longer, he feels it slipping off his fingers faster than with the short. He doesn't mind. He doesn't care.

All he cares about is that he lands that quad Lutz so well he almost starts laughing, that his jumps sequence it's great, that at some point he realizes he can add a jump at the end and he does, out of spite, a triple Axel, just because he can.

Seven jumps, 4 spins, a perfect step sequence, three of the jumps and three of the spins in the second half of the routine, which means extra points, he knows all of this.

He stops in the middle of the rink, the song ends, he's sweating like a fucking pig. The crowd goes wild, everyone is on their feet, Jungkook smiles so wide it hurts his cheeks. He bows, waves, a plushie hits him right on the face and he laughs, holding it to his chest and then turning away.

As he makes his way to Namjoon, he catches Taehyung's eyes. He's staring at him, lips curled up in a smirk, he arches an eyebrow, Jungkook knows what he's telling him: Guess I'll just have to be better than that.

 

Jungkook's score leaves him dizzy.

“Did you-” Namjoon swallows “210.”

“Holy shit.”

“There's a camera, don't curse.” Namjoon chuckles, he pats him on the back hard “Good job, Jungkook.”

 

 

“You know, you could actually score yourself a gold.” Namjoon tells him once they're on the benches.

Jungkook frowns “You're the one who told me to aim for gold, that's what I'm doing.”

“Yeah, but- nevermind.” Namjoon smiles at him “Even if you don't get a gold, you've been fucking amazing.”

Jungkook smiles “Thanks.”

Then it's Taehyung's routine.

Jungkook doesn't know what he expected, to be honest. Maybe he hoped Taehyung was one of those skaters who can do good only in shorts and freak out druing frees because their stamina ain't good enough. Of course, this is not Taehyung's case.

No, Taehyung skates on the notes of “Arrival of the birds” with so much grace and passion Jungkook almost tears up. Taehyung gives them a step sequence where he looks at the palm of his hand before stretching his arm forward and it's almost as if it's that sole part of his body that is propelling him on the rink. Taehyung has golden skin hidden under pale silk, with an intricate motif of lace on his bare back in the shape of two wings and he looks ethereal. Taehyung drops on his knees, arches his back as he slides on the ice with his arms bent backwards and his fingertips grazing the cold surface. Taehyung... Taehyung gives them a quad Salchow with a roation so thight it leaves him breathless and with his fucking arms raised perfectly, landing on the edge of his skate and already setting up the next jump. Taehyung is beautiful when he finishes his routine, smiling wide, eyes glimmering, almost as if he himself can't believe he just did that, Jungkook can't blame him.

Taehyung scores 228 points. He's first. He wins Gold. Jungkook wins Silver.

 

As they're on the podium, side by side, the difference in the height where Taehyung stands feel impossible. They briefly share a glance, Taehyung smirks before he looks straight ahead.

Namjoon's words ring in his head “If you actually get a silver I'll consider it a fucking gold.”.

It sure as hell doesn't feel like gold.

 

 

 

 

The after party is something Jungkook doesn't particularly enjoy but doesn't hate either. There's free booze, after all, and the food this year isn't bad. Except for the cous cous. That's kind of nasty.

Jungkook sips on his champagne, looking at the athletes mingling around, the buzzing of their chats filling the air. Namjoon went out for a smoke, Jimin and Yoongi were with him earlier but now they're gone and, truth be told, Jungkook doesn't want to know what they're doing. He has a vague idea and that's enough.

“I'm fucking starving.”

Jungkook turns his head to the deep voice and Taehyung is there, champagne flute in one hand, an empty plate in the other, eyes scanning the food.

“Don't try the cous cous, it's shit.” he says.

“Noted.” Taehyung replies, going for some finger sandwiches instead “You did good out there.”

“Thanks.” Jungkook takes a sip of his drink “So did you.”

“Well, of course, I wouldn't have won gold otherwise.” Taehyung bites one of the sandwiches and hums around it “This shit's tasty.”

Jungkook nods absentmindedly. He spots Namjoon walking back inside, the man spots Seokjin, Namjoon turns around and leaves the room again. Jungkook sighs.

“But, really.” Taehyung looks at him “Your routine was good.”

Jungkook doesn't see any trace of teasing in his eyes, just a sort of disarming honesty that he doesn't know how to handle, so all he does is nodding.

“Yours too, it was beautiful.” Jungkook admits “Really.”

“I know.” Taehyung grins, but it's not unpleasant “Hoseok outdid himself with this one, it's great. Who takes care of your choreos?”

“My former ballet teacher, he stuck with me after I switched to ice.”

Taehyung hums, he puts down the now empty plate and, well, he eats fast. Jungkook notices Taehyung isn't wearing a suit, unlike all the others, just a crisp shirt and pants. It fits him too well. Jungkook swallows and looks away.

“All this praises mean you're recognizing me as your competition?” Jungkook asks and, to his annoyance, Taehyung snorts.

“Bitch, please.” he says, a perfect eyebrow raised “You just confirmed a silver, I got a gold after a full year of no skating. Competition? I don't see it.”

Jungkook bites his bottom lip, mostly to stop himself from telling him to go fuck himself. Taehyung cocks his head to the side.

“See, this is where you and I are different. It's class.”

“Class.”

“And, once again, arrogance. The fact that you think you could be on my level is, itself, a demonstration of arrogance.”

“Jesus Christ.” Jungkook shakes his head “You're so fucking insufferable.”

Taehyung grins “Only for you.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes “Shit, just shut up.”

Taehyung raises his chin up, regards him for a moment, eyes taking him in, and then “Make me.”

 

 

And that's how Jungkook finds himself with Taehyung pinned against the wall in the red haired's hotel room.

Honestly, he should've seen it coming.

Taehyung kisses him like an angry man, biting his lip, tugging at it and then leaving his mouth open for Jungkook's tongue, groaning in the kiss, hips shifting against Jungkook's until the boy slides his leg between Taehyung's thighs and he drags his crotch against it.

“You're fucking humping my leg.” Jungkook says, breaking the kiss.

“I'm horny, sue me.” Taehyung says, voice a little wavery as he keeps his hips moving, his hardening cock dragging against the fabric of Jungkook's pants, he tugs at his jacket “Take this off.”

Jungkook complies, quickly shrugging the jacket off and throwing it on the ground, Taehyung starts unbotting his shirt “I want you to fuck me so hard I feel it for a week.”

“Shit.” Jungkook helps him with the shirt until Taehyung is bare, his skin nothing short of a miracle, Jungkook latches his lips on the juncture of neck and shoulder. Of fucking course his skin also tastes good, this is ridiculous “You've got condoms, yeah?”

“And three kinds of lube, now hurry the fuck up.” Taehyung says, voice hoarse “Find them in my luggage.”

Jungkook leaves one last bite and starts walking to said luggage, he gets on his knees and looks for the bottles “Pineapple flavor? Seriously?”

“I like it.”

“It's fucking nasty.”

“I'm nasty.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes but still takes it, finds the condoms next to it and he walks back to Taehyung, who's leaning against the wall.

“Bed?”

“No.” Taehyung grins “Fuck me against a wall.”

“You are nasty.” Jungkook fumbles for a moment with Taehyung's belt, but finally manages to undo it, he zips down his pants “Turn around.”

Taehyung does, plating his hands against the wall, Jungkook pulls down his pants and briefs in one motion, he hears the other boy chuckling “Someone's eager.”

“Seriously, shut up.” Jungkook mutters, kneeling down and taking a long look at Taehyung's body. Shit, he's thicker than he looks, legs toned and trained, his ass round and perky. Jungkook squeezes some of the lube in his hand, warming it up a little between his fingers and spreads Taehyung's cheeks.

“Thought I told you to make me shu- oh, fuck.”

Jungkook grins, his thumb rubbing against Taehyung's entrance “There, I made you shut up.”

“Just fucking do it.”

Jungkook frowns “You're bossy as fuck, it's annoying. Spread your legs.”

Taehyung obeys, opening his legs and sticking his back a little, Jungkook slowly slips a finger inside and Taehyung clenches around it.

“Shit.” the red haired knocks his forehead against the wall “Come on, come on.”

Jungkook keeps a slow pace, carefully sliding in and out until Taehyung starts to relax and he adds another finger.

“Like that.” Taehyung swallows “Like that, add another.”

“Already?”

“I like the stretch, seriously.”

Jungkook obeys, slowly pushing in a third finger, he meets resistance but the noise that spills out of Taehyung's mouth is filthy enough to keep him going, slowly thrusting inside.

“Fuck, that's good.” Taehyung mutters “That's so good.”

Jungkook crooks his fingers a little and Taehyung quivers, he moans quietly, clenching around his fingers.

“Hurry the fuck up, Jeon, want you inside me.” Taehyung says, pushing his ass back on his fingers, Jungkook rolls his eyes. Fuck, he hates him. He fingers him fast, scissoring him open, drowning a little in the noises that slip past Taehyung's lips, deep and needy and just fucking addictive.

“I'm ready, fuck me.” Taehyung urges him, still fucking himself on Jungkook's fingers “Come on, Jeon.”

Jungkook slips his fingers out of Taehyung, mouth dry as he looks for a moment at Taehyung's hole clenching aroun nothing, then he stands up and starts undoing the buttons of his pants “How do you want it?”

Taehyung turns his head to look at him, skin flushed up to his neck, eyes dark “Literally against this wall.”

“Fine.” Jungkook pulls down his briefs just low enough that he can take his dick out, he quickly tears the condom package open and then slides it on his length, hissing a little at the friction after not touching himself all this time, he lubes himself and grips Taehyung's hips “Relax, yeah?”

“Not a newbie, know how this shit works.”

“Christ, you're fucking unbearable.” Jungkook murmurs as he lines up behind Taehyung, gripping his hips tight.

Slowly, Jungkook starts burying himself in Taehyung, eyes closing at the warmth that envelopes him, lips opening in a silent moan. Beneath him, Taehyung makes a noise that could be either of pain or pleasure, he isn't sure.

“You good?” Jungkook swallows “You're fucking tight.”

“Skaters-” Taehyung hisses “Usually are.”

“Haven't fucked many skaters.” he admits, keeping still as he bottoms out “Actually, haven't fucked any skater.”

“Took your skaters virginity.” Taehyung chuckles breathlessly “I'll write it in- in my diary, with fluttering hearts and all that shit.”

“Do you ever shut up?” Jungkook grumbles, he pulls back just slightly “Like, you have a cock in your ass, focus on that.”

Taehyung scoffs “If you gave me reasons to focus on that I would, but I'm kinda going soft down here, so I wi- fuck!

Jungkook grins at the moan, thrusting inside Taehyung hard, hips finding their own pace “Please, keep talking, you will what?”

“Focus on the cock, I'll focus.” Taehyung pushes back on his dick “Like that, fuck me like that.”

And Jungkook does, pounding in Taehyung hard and fast, the way he wants it, the way the skater seems to really fucking like, judging by the noises that slip past his lips.

Taehyung clenches around him and Jungkook knocks his forehead against the other's shoulder, muffling his noises on golden skin.

“Deeper.” Taehyung gapes, he grips Jungkook's wrist “Go- go deeper.”

Jungkook lets go of Taehyung's hip and snakes his hand under his right thigh and lifts it up, a hand braced against the wall and fuck into him harder, pushing Taehyung against the wall.

Taehyung moans, he throws his head back “Shit, yes Jeon, like that. Fuck me like you won gold.”

Jungkook has some lucidity left to think that this, this feels way better than any gold would. Because Taehyung is vocal, tight and warm and fucking gorgeuos in the most insufferable way.

He latches his lips on Taehyung's neck, lapping at the skin, biting almost angrily. Fuck it, he is angry, because Taehyung might feel like gold but he's still the one who won it, so call him petty but he's gonna get his own medal this way. The way Taehyung's voice turns impossibly deeper when Jungkook finds his prostate makes him shiver, forces him to fuck into him more.

“God, Jungkook, pull my hair.” Taehyung moans, tilting his head to look at him with glazed eyes.

Jungkook grabs a handful of red locks with his free hand and tugs them and, suddenly, Taehyung mutters something in a language he doesn't recognize in the haze of it all, but realizes must be Korean and, shit, if that isn't the hottest thing.

Taehyung starts pushing back more eagerly, meeting his thrusts, Jungkook sees him stroking his length fast.

“Close.” Taehyung breathes out “Fucking close.”

Jungkook is too, he feels heat pooling, his hips moving almost frantically, too fucking gone in the way Taehyung keeps moaning words he doesn't understand. He feels Taehyung tightening around him, he pulls at his hair hard and Taehyung comes against the wall with a moan, whole body quivering, Jungkook keeps fucking him through it.

“Come on.” Taehyung hisses, Jungkook swears there's a grin in his voice “Come for me, jagi.”

Jungkook does, body stilling as he spills in the condom, panting against Taehyung's damp skin.

Jungkook licks his lips and starts pulling out, Taehyung hissing a little. When he lets go of Taehyung's thigh and waist, the skater's legs seem to give up and Jungkook grips his hips.

“You good?”

“I'm fucking great.” Taehyung chuckles, still his whole weight is kept up by Jungkook “Can't feel my legs.”

“Okay.” Jungkook sighs and helps Taehyung sitting down on the floor. He doesn't really wanna think about how dirty the moquette can be, so he doesn't and sits beside him, back against the wall.

“See.” Taehyung pulls back his hair “If only you'd skate the way you fuck you'd win gold.”

“One more fucking word about gold, I dare you.”

“What you gonna do, spank me? I might like it.”

Jungkook arches an eyebrow “No, you wouldn't.”

Taehyung hums “You're right, I wouldn't.”

“You're too bossy and bratty for spanking.”

Taehyung snorts “I'm the brat here, right.”

“You let me fuck you out of spite.” Jungkook says “I'd say you are.”

“You make a compelling argument.” Taehyung giggles a little, closing his eyes, Jungkook can't help but smiling as well.

They stay quiet for a while, the traffic down the street filling the silence, Taehyung's breathing still a little fast.

“You know.” Jungkook swallows “I wouldn't mind going for a second round.”

Taehyung opens his eyes and stares at him for a moment “Don't know what kinda fucked up stamina you have, but my ass is wrecked right now. Out of business.”

“You're okay, yeah?”

“I'll tell you in a week.”

Jungkook snorts “Well, my ass is just fine.”

That seems to catch Taehyung's attention just fine “Wanna ride me?”

“Sure.”

“Give me five minutes, a diet coke and a matress and we have a deal.”

 

 

 

 

 

Jungkook wakes up the next morning to an empty bed. He isn't surprised, nor disappointed. God knows he really does not want to bear Taehyung's shit first thing he wakes up.

What surprises him, though, is the note left on the pillow.

 

See you at World's, Silver Boy

 

“Fucking annoying bitch.” Jungkook mutters, grinning.

 

 

 

 

WORLD'S CHAMPIONSHIPS 2017

 

 

The thing about Helsinki is that the city is as beautiful as it is cold. The It's march but there's still snow and I have to dress like the Michelin man kind of cold.

Jungkook doesn't mind. Okay, maybe he does, maybe he really doesn't dig the fact that he has to wear layers and layers of clothing near the end of march, but there's not much he can do.

“If only you'd put this kind of burning passion in your skating,” Namjoon tells him, elbows on the toppers of the boards, scrolling through his timeline on twitter with his Ipad “Maybe you'd win a gold.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes, dabbing the sweat off his forehead with a towel “You're a good coach when it comes to training, but if it's about hyping up your athlete you're, like, the worst person ever.”

Namjoon looks up from his Ipad for one second before he's back at it “I ain't gonna baby you, Kook, I'm here to keep your career going.”

“You're my friend as well.”

“I am.” Namjoon nods “A very honest friend. An honest friend that will tell you the truth. Which is that you're too fucking stiff.”

“I didn't have much time to prepare.” Jungkook mumbles, Namjoon sends him a glare.

“Don't bullshit me, you did have time. You trained for a whole month, but your mind is elsewhere.” the man sighs “It's fine, Jungkook, we all have periods of time where we just can't focus. But you're competing in two days, you need to get your head in the game.”

Jungkook arches an eyebrow “Thank you, Troy Bolton.”

“Boy, I should kiss your ass.” Namjoon chuckles “Look, it was your idea to come to Helsinki a week before the championship, so don't go whining because of the cold.”

Jungkook knows Namjoon is right. It was his decision to come earlier, so that he could get used to the weather and jetlag. Doesn't mean he's happy with having his ass freezing everytime he takes a step outside his hotel.

“What time is it?” Jungkook asks, getting out of the rink and putting on his protectors.

Namjoon looks back on the Ipad “Three P.M., we gotta go. 'Cause I don't wanna hear Yoongi whining about us being late one more time.”

 

 

At the airport there are already reporters and a huge number of fans waiting at the arrivals with presents and papers that they hope will get an autograph. That's because Jimin is just that popular, all sunny smiles ready for right about anyone. Jungkook and Namjoon stand back, not really in the mood for being recognised.

Jungkook grins as soon as he sees Jimin walking past the door with Yoongi by his side. His smile falls as soon as he recognizes a mop of red hair right behind his friend.

“Fuck.”

“Ain't that Kim?” Namjoon asks, squinting his eyes “Shit, Seokjin's there too.”

Jungkook grimaces. Great, now Namjoon is freaking out as well. He sees Jimin running to the girls calling his name, smiling at them and accepting the gifts, signing some papers that are being shoved in his face, Yoongi looking at him with a little smile. Taehyung has decided to just hug every person he can reach, posing for selfies and pictures, Seokjin is rolling his eyes so hard Jungkook briefly wonders if it's hurting him.

He hasn't seen Taehyung in more than a month. That doesn't mean he didn't think about their night together because, truly, only a fool wouldn't think back on it. More than once. Many times. Maybe too many times. Thing is, if he thinks about it the first wave is the one of arousal, then the second one (and the strongest) is of pure annoyance. Because Taehyung, no matter how hot and fucking beautiful, is still an annoying brat.

Jimin and Taehyung wave goodbye to the fans and Jimin starts looking for him and Namjoon. Once he spots them he quickens his steps, almost jogging to him.

“My child!” he squeals as he throws his arms around Jungkook's neck.

“I'm taller than you, what kinda bullshit is that?” he groans, hugging him back.

“Still my child.” Jimin smiles at him and lets go of his neck, he turns to Namjoon and hugs him as well.

Jungkook turns around to say hello to Yoongi, instead he's met with Taehyung's face.

“Hi.” he says, Taehyung frowns.

“You're not gonna hug me?” he asks, opening his arms.

“Absolutely fucking not.”

“Shit, you're stonecold, man.” Taehyung pouts but shrugs “Aren't you happy to see me?”

“Why are you here?” he asks instead, because no, he really isn't happy to see Taehyung. Not so soon.

“Jin-hyung and I spent the week in London, so we decided to fly with Jimin and Yoongi-hyung.” he replies, smile back on his lips “By the way, you still haven't been introduced. This is Kim Seokjin, my trainer.”

Jungkook turns to Jin, the man's smile friendly and warm- and holy shit how large are his shoulders?

“It's good to meet you again.” he says, holding out his hand, Jungkook shakes it.

“Me too, a pleasure.” he says, smiling as well.

“I loved your routine, truly powerful.” Jin nods “You're really good.”

Jungkook bows his head, a little flustered “Thank you, I'm not that great.”

“Oh, please, you're good. Oh.” Jin looks past him, smile faltering “Didn't see you there, Namjoon.”

Namjoon clicks his tongue “Uh huh. Nice to see you, Seokjin.”

Jin gives him a clipped smile, so fucking fake Jungkook barely holds his laughter back “Likewise.”

Taehyung claps his hands “Okay, let's get the fuck out of here before they start kicking their asses.”

 

 

 

In the taxi, on their way to the hotel, Jimin asks him if he wants to go out with them that night.

“We wanna explore a little.”

He wouldn't mind, really. He missed Jimin like crazy, not to mention Yoongi. But Taehyung will come as well and, honestly, he's not sure if he's ready to endure a night of awkwardness. Because it is awkward between them, it always is after angry hurried sex.

“I've been exploring by myself.” Jungkook replies “I'll just sleep.”

Namjoon scoffs “Fuck you, the only time you leave your hotel room is to go to the rink and train.”

Jungkook sends a glare to Namjoon, the man frowning and shrugging a little, as if to tell what now?

“Then it's settled, you're coming.” Jimin grins.

“No, really, I-”

“You should come.” Taehyung suddenly says, eyes fixed on the screen of his phone “It's gonna be fun, just say yes.”

And now Jungkook wants to choke him. Not in the sexy way. Admittedely, he hasn't really been talking to Taehyung,when they had the chance to they skipped right to the fucking, he doesn't know him as a person, only as a rival. But if there's one thing Jungkook things he's got figured out about the red haired is that Taehyung is a sneaky piece of shit. When Taehyung finally looks up from his phone he's got a challenge glinting in his eyes. And Jungkook is too competitive to say no to a challenge, especially when it comes from him.

“Okay.” he says “Sure, I'll come.”

 

 

 

 

He shouldn't have come.

What was he thinking?

This is horrible.

They're in a car Jin rented before coming to Helsinki, driving in the snowy city headed for a bar Namjoon insisted on saying has a great beer. And it's akward as fuck.

The worst thing is that he can't even blame it on Taehyung, oh no. The primary cuplprits are Jin and Namjoon who, supposedly, should be the mature ones.

Instead, this is what happens.

“You should've turned left there.” Namjoon says.

“I know where I'm going, thank you.” Jin replies, hands on the wheel.

“No, you don't, that's why I'm sitting next to you telling you where to go.”

“Maps exist, I checked before we drove away.”

“I'm telling you, you should've turned left.”

A pause “Please, Namjoon, keep telling me what I have to do, since that worked so fine last time.”

Another pause, longer “We're not having this conversation here.”

“It's been years, we're not having this conversation. Period.”

“You're the one who-”

“Shut the fuck up.”

“You always did this, every fucking time, always telling me to shut up.”

“That's because so much shit comes out of your mouth I'm surprised it didn't turn into an asshole yet.”

All of this whilst Taehyung and Jungkook are pressed together in the backseat, against the car window, because Yoongi and Jimin are too busy making out to give a crap about shared space.

Jungkook tries to move away from Taehyung a little, instead he elbows him in the ribs.

“Ouch.”

“Sorry.”

“It's fine.” Taehyung sends a pointed look at Jimin “Get a fucking room.”

Jimin just raises his middle finger, still kissing Yoongi like a starved man.

Jungkook sighs “Why isn't your choreographer with you?”

“Hoseok?” Taehyung purses his lips, looking outside the window “His flight got delayed, he'll be here tomorrow morning. Working my ass off as usual.”

“He makes all the choreos?”

“Oh, yeah, I'm shit at it.” Taehyung smiles “He's amazing, always comes up with the best ideas.”

“Yeah, I could see.” he says, looking away from Taehyung and focusing instead on the road.

“Yeah, you could.” Taehyung lowers his voice a little, Jungkook ignores it.

 

 

 

A thing he will give Namjoon is that the beer is definitely as good as he said. But it's cold. And they're forced to drink outside because the bar was packed so here they are, walking in the streets of Helsinki, a plastic glass filled with beer that is too fucking cold to truly enjoy, Jungkook swears his nose is gonna fall off at some point.

Jimin has his face buried in Yoongi's scarf, the older boy forced it around his neck when he saw Jimin shivering. Just because Yoongi is actually soft as hell when it comes to his boyfriend.

“What a good idea you had, Namjoon.” Jin mutters.

Namjoon groans “God, I hate you.”

“Sure.”

“This is why I-”

“One more word and I'll drown you in that pile of snow over there.”

“You can't drown in snow.”

Jin just sighs and walks past him, Namjoon follows him with a roll of his eyes.

Taehyung and Jungkook are left at the back of the group, 'cause that's just what happens when you go out with a couple and a former couple.

They're not talking. Which is all kinds of red flags of awkwardness. Jungkook isn't good with awkwardness. Truth be told, Jungkook isn't good at a lot of things, like doing the dishwasher without getting all his clothes stained because he forgot to divide them by colors, hence the reason why he only owns black and white shirts. He's not good at pillow talk. But mostly, not good at dealing with awkwardness.

Taehyung has his beanie down his forehead, gloved hands trembling around his plastic cup, nose and cheeks flushed. Which is cute. Jungkook really doesn't need cute right now.

He looks back on the ground, there's the smell of salt and he guesses they can't be too far from the sea. Maybe the next day, with the sun out, he'll go and take a look. Not now. Now it's too cold.

He looks back at Taehyung and frowns as he sees the way he's walking, every step careful, a little off.

“Are you okay?” he asks.

“Apart from my frozen ass?”

“You're limping.”

Taehyung hums “Hurt my ankle three days ago.”

Jungkook stops walking, Taehyung does as well, looking at him with curiosity.

“Your ankle?”

“Not the one I broke.” Taehyung says quickly, Jungkook can hear relief in his voice “Thanks fuck for that, no, it's the other one. It's not that bad, barely a sprain, but it still bothers me a little.”

Jungkook nods “Will you be alright?”

Taehyung shrugs, fidgeting with his cup “If I'm lucky I'll get a silver. Maybe bronze. It all depends on how I land, really.”

“Shit.”

“Nah, it's cool.” Taehyung smiles, it's a little forced maybe, but he means it “Can't do anything about it.”

Jungkook starts walking again, Taehyung following him “It's gonna be boring with only Jimin being in full shape.”

Taehyung snorts “Why, you think you can do better than him?”

“Fuck no.” Jungkook chuckles “Oh, he's gonna tear me to shreds. He sent me a video of half of his routine and he could kick my ass if he only does that, so.”

Taehyung laughs at that, breath condensing before his mouth in a little cloud “He's so fucking scary when he's confident, he's gonna bury us all.”

“He will be competing even when he turns forty.”

“He's gonna die with skates glued to his feet.” Taehyung takes a deep breath “I listened to the track Yoongi prepared for him.”

“Is it good?”

“God.” Taehyung shakes his head “It's so beautiful. Fucking heartbreaking.”

Jungkook takes a sip of his ice cold beer “We're fucked.”

“We are.” Taehyung sighs “God knows they have the favor of the audience. People love them.”

“Power couple, really.”

“And the judges don't say it, but they all love Jimin. And they love the whole Oh, I'm his coach and he skates on the songs I compose for him, we're so in love that we make out in the car when there are four other people with us.

Jungkook snorts “Look at us, we're the same height and we wear matching outfits.”

“I'm a bundle of sunshine and smiles and he's the grumpy but soft boyfriend who will kill anyone if they dare treat me wrong.” Taehyung adds, giggling.

“A match made in Heaven.”

“I hate them.” Taehyung says “But I'm so fucking jealous as well.”

Jungkook stays quiet for a while after that, the group various steps before them, he's pretty sure Namjoon and Jin are still bickering “You want that kind of relationship?”

“I want that kind of love. Relationships? Not my forte.” Taehyung drinks his beer “Ask anyone.”

“I'm gonna believe you.” Jungkook takes a deep breath, the air cold but it smells clean, of snow, of winter even if it's spring “We should catch up with the others.”

Taehyung nods and they both walk a little faster, quickly catching up with the rest of the group, but they still walk just a step behind them.

“So, does this mean we have a decent, civil relationship right now?” Jungkook asks and Taehyung sends him a smirk.

“Fuck that, I'm still gold and you're still silver.”

“Of course, what was I thinking?” there's no real bite in his voice, he's actually a little amused. 'Cause out of the rink, Taehyung isn't bad. He's nice, he's positive, he's warm. All of this whilst maintaining that aura of superiority that comes only with confidence, Jungkook can't do anything to change that and he's not sure if he even wants to. But he knows that, in three days, when they'll be on the rink again, Taehyung will forget about this night, forget about the night in Gangneung, forget about all the filth he whispered in his ear and just skate. For gold.

 

 

 

 

“Spell that out again for me.”

Jungkook looks up from his damp towel and sets his eyes on Jimin, the boy gliding over the ice with his chest heaving as he just finished practicing his routine.

“Me and Taehyung fucked back in Korea.”

Jimin's eyes widen, he sends a look at Yoongi as if to ask him ‘are you hearing this shit?’, Yoongi just shrugs from the benches.

“Don't tell Namjoon, by the way, he'd skin me alive.” Jungkook adds, Jimin nods and goes over to him, spinning around smoothly and leaning with his back against the boards, the ice rink silent and empty, their voices and breaths echoing against the walls.

“Well, shit.” Jimin sighs “I mean, I could see something was different between you two, but didn't think it was sexual tension.”

“That's because it ain't sexual tension.” Jungkook says, he takes a long sip of water then puts the bottle on the ice “Just tension. Awkwardness. Whatever.”

Jimin nods to himself, he squints his eyes “I wonder if Hoseok knows.”

“What about him?” Jungkook asks, then his eyes widen “Please tell me I did not fuck with a dude who's in a relationship.”

“Nah, Tae doesn't do relationships, he's a prick.” Jimin waves a hand at him dismissively “Neither does Hoseok, to be honest. They're kinda friends with benefits, have been fucking around since they met. Nothing serious, though, no romance whatsoever.”

Jungkook hums, he thinks about it for a moment “Then what am I?”

Jimin looks at him “Was it tender sex or angry sex?”

“Honestly, competitive sex.”

“The you're his one night stands out of spite.” Jimin says “Tae does that sometimes.”

“Fucking great.”

“If you fuck again, though, then you'll be his fuckbuddy out of spite.”

“Won't do it again.” Jungkook rolls his shoulders, getting the stiffness away and starts skating back to the center of the rink “I'm not fucking stupid.”

He's pretty sure Jimin doesn't believe him. He doesn't believe himself either.

 

 

 

His costume is itchy as fuck. And tight where it shouldn't be tight. This thing should be tailored, why the hell is it so uncomfortable? Jungkook grimaces and scratches his knee, the fabric of the pants heavy on his legs, Namjoon sends him a look.

“You might wanna calm the fuck down.”

“This thing is itchy.” he hisses “Next time we're getting it somewhere else.”

Namjoon sighs “Whatever. Camera incoming, probable interview.”

Jungkook straightens up and rolls his shoulders, acting as if he hasn't noticed the camera crew walking to him and focusing on the empty rink, the buzzing of the audience filling the silence when there isn't music playing from the speakers.

“We have Jungkook Jeon here.” The man says as soon as he's in front of him, which means they're live, he's middle aged, europen accent, probably some sports channel Jungkook has never seen “How are you feeling?”

Jungkook smiles “I'm feeling good, thank you.”

“Confident?”

“I have to be.”

The man nods “You had a great result at the Four Continents, you think you can keep your silver?”

Jungkook scrunches up his nose “I'm aiming for gold, obviously, but Jimin is in the competition, so-”

“Ah, yes, reigning champion. You two are rivals?”

“We're friends before that. It's healthy competition, I guess.”

“What about Taehyung Kim?”

It feels weird to hear Taehyung's name said like that, in the western way, Jungkook decides to ignore it “What about him?”

“Isn't he your competition?”

“Everyone is.” he pauses, clearly the interviewer wants him to keep going “He's good, so he's competition. But so are the others. I'll just do my best, hope to bring home a medal.”

“I'm sure you will, good luck.”

Jungkook nods and smiles at the camera before they walk away, already looking for someone else to interview before the competition starts, Jungkook starts scratching his knee again.

He's good, so he's competition.” Namjoon quotes “But so are the others, bla bla bla.”

“Shut up.”

“Just admit he's great, it ain't so hard.” Namjoon shakes his head “The more you try to sound like you don't think that the more people will know you actually do.”

Jungkook sighs and decides to leave his knee being, scratching it till it bleeds is not gonna change anything. He sits down on his bench and tries to focus. This isn't just Taehyung, Jimin is in the game too. And Jimin is World Champion, owns the current World's Record and he sure as hell knows that if he wants to even have a slight chance to bring home any kind of medal he's gonna have to give it his all. Because figure skating looks graceful from the screens, beautiful and enchanting, elegant in all the movements when, really, it's the most brutal sport someone could actually spend a lifetime doing.

 

 

 

During competitions, Jimin likes to be left alone. He and Yoongi disappear for a while and, when it's his turn, Jimin just appears again, looking completely at ease. Jungkook knows for a fact that Jimin doesn't act confident, he just is. He's always been jealous of that, one of Jimin's greatest skills is that he's always been capable of holding himself together, nerves of steel.

Taehyung, on the other hand, doesn't look confident at all. Which is fucked up in all kinds of ways. Jungkook looks at him, standing a few feet away, fidgeting with the hems of his sweatshirt, sitting on a bench, his legs can't keep still, bouncing and bouncing, jittering in a way that really doesn't suit Taehyung, Jin is sending him nervous looks whilst Hoseok, that did indeed fly in the next morning, mutters to him almost close-mouthed words.

Taehyung nods, looks up from the floor and their gazes meet for a second, before Jungkook looks back on the ice rink, Russia performing a routine that is half beautiful jumps that land too hard, half really badly mixed step sequences. All of this on the music of The Godfather. Bad taste.

 

 

This time, Taehyung goes first. Jungkook has an half thought of actually not watch his program, that maybe it's better if he doesn't know what he's gonna do and how well he'll do that. Then again, curiosity is still a bitch, with Taehyung is still the most expensive slut. So he stays there, sat on his bench, looking at Taehyung nodding at Jin's words. Hoseok squeezes his shoulder, smiles at him, Jungkook sees a particular complicity in their shared glance.

They've been fucking around for ages, that's what Jimin told him. Jungkook can see that.

Taehyung skates to the center of the rink, arms open for the audience, smile on his lips, sets himself in starting position.

When the music starts, it's not what Jungkook had been expecting. It's more lively than anything Taehyung has ever skated on, seems like an old rock song that has been slightly rearranged for the routine. So Taehyung skates following just that kind of vibe, his first sequence of step is bouncy, playful, the grin on his face smug but in an endearing way, it's like watching a kid who just learned about music. The first jump is a triple Lutz, Taehyung lands it beautifully, rotations tight and high. Jungkook nibbles on his bottom lip as Taehyung starts his spin, a Bielmann. Jungkook looks at the way his whole body arches prettily and he can't help but think of that night, of how fucking sinful that body can be, how lovely his voice can sound. He swallows, blinks, Taehyung is setting what Jungkook guesses must be the jump combination, considering how much momentum the skater is gaining, the first one must be a toe pick considering the take off stance. Either that or he's about to fuck up his whole combination. But of course, he doesn't. Quad Lutz, he lands it, then triple Toe, as if that's the most normal thing for him, as if he were born to jump them like that. Fuck, jealousy is annoying, it bites at his stomach with sharp teeth and burns like the flame of a lighter. More steps, all incredibly beautiful, graceful, but still they hold that playfulness he decided to adopt for this routine. Clearly, it's working for the audience, they're clapping along, cheering at almost every element. Taehyung spins happily in front of the judges and winks at them, Jungkook rolls his eyes.

“That's a thing you'd better do.” Namjoon grumbles and Jungkook ignores him.

They're almost at the end now, Taehyung is setting off his final jump and Jungkook already knows it must be a quad Salchow, Taehyung loves his Salchows. He jumps. It's high, and the rotations fast and tight, beautiful in mid air, but when he lands Jungkook catches the slight pain that shifts on Taehyung's face and his knee buckles for a mere second. But he doesn't fall, most of the audience probably didn't even notice it. He did. It pisses him off that a part of him rejoices, 'cause that is definitely a deduction, then there's the other part that feels fucking horrible. He shouldn't feel bad. Not when they're on a rink.

Taehyung then, out of nowhere, gives them all a freaking death drop that is even higher than the rest of his jumps, then a break leg spin fast as hell as he slowly raises himself up, the curves of his body almost melting in the air and then it's over. Taehyung is standing still with his fist raised in the air, chest heaving, eyes shiny.

Jungkook follows him with his eyes as he gets out of the rink and walks with Jin and Hoseok to the kiss and cry. The limp is barely there. Jungkook thinks he notices it just because he knows that his ankle is hurting. Because, yes, he did all of that with a hurt ankle.

“You think you can do better than that?” Namjoon asks him as the score comes out.

Techinal score 52, 5

Presentation score 48 points

Deduction -1

A total score of 99. 05 points.

Which is fucking impressive in the most annoying way.

“No.” he replies because, really, he can't do better than that “But I can try.”

Namjoon nods slowly.

 

 

 

 

Jungkook knows he's not gonna land that jump the minute he sets off in the air. It's his fault, really. It's his first jump, the triple Axel, what really bothers him is that he's done that jump so many times it almost started to bore him at some point. But, still, he knows he's not gonna land it. And it's only his fault, because he chose the worst possible angle but, once he's midair, there's not much he can do about it. So he makes sure the roations are all there and he still tries his best to not fall on his ass. He doesn't. Which is a relief, but his landing leg still gives up on him and he finds himself planting his hand on the ice to keep himself upright. And that really fucks him up in the head. You miss the first jump, that just ticks something inside a skater. Which is why he decides to ignore it and gives it all in terms of presentation. The song he chose is good, it's darker than his usual choices, which gives him the right to tilt his chin up once he passes in front of the judges, a faint smirk on his lips, that adds to the score. At this point that's all he can do, add to the score. So more strength on the presentation. Yet, he finds himself being extra careful with the next jumps, which means that they're less fast than usual, less high, the landing less gracious. He curses himself mentally for that, but by now he's surprised he's doing so well. Final spin, layback, he keeps it as fast as he can, head swimming in exhaustion, then he plants his skate on the ice and stops right on time with the ending of the song.

The audience cheers, Jungkook grimaces a little but still bows to them, mouthing a thank you, turns on the other side and bows as well.

As soon as his protectors are on, Namjoon is talking his ear off “Did you actually almost fall after an Axel.”

“Not now.” Jungkook replies, walking to the kiss and cry.

“Then when? A fucking Axel.”

“All jumps are the same.”

“Not for you, they aren't. What kinda fucked up angle was that?”

“I know, okay?” Jungkook sits on the little couch and puts on his sweatshirt, waving at the camera with a tight smile, Namjoon sits next to him.

“The rest was good though.” he says “Spins were a piece of art. Jumps a little careful.”

“I got nervous.”

Namjoon sighs and pats his back “We still have the free. And it was a good performance either way.”

The score comes out.

Technical: 52.

Presentation: 48.

Deductions: -1

A total score of 99.

He's half point behind Taehyung.

He's half point behind Taehyung, who's in the lead, with a hurt ankle.

 

 

 

Jungkook is out of his costume and back into his sweats when he sits down on the bench and waits for Jimin to come up, Namjoon outside making a call. Suddenly, someone sits beside him, Jungkook turns around and it's Taehyung, out of his costume as well, wearing his country's sweatshirt and a pair of black sweats.

“I'm so fucking nervous.” he mutters “I hope he does well.”

“When has he ever done bad?”

Taehyung grimaces “He was nervous today, you know?”

“Didn't seem like it.”

“He threw up tonight, something he ate the day before messed up his stomach.”

Jungkook feels his heart dropping “Shit.”

Taehyung shrugs “I hope he does well, really. And he has all the weight on his shoulder, you know, current world champion and all.”

Jungkook bites the inside of his cheek when the guy from Italy falls right on his ass after a terrible jump.

“You're feeling okay?” he asks, Taehyung frowns “You almost fell because of your ankle.”

“Ah.” Taehyung squints his eyes, following the movements of the skater “I landed too hard, didn't expect that. It's okay. You did well.”

Jungkook snorts “No, I didn't.” Taehyung rolls his eyes.

“You messed up the first jump but still landed the others, you did well.” he pauses “Probably gave one of the judges a boner.”

“Dude.”

Taehyung grins and Jungkook feels a little of the tension in his shoulder going away.

 

Jimin is up.

The audience is already screaming for him even if he's still talking with Yoongi, nodding at every word of the grey haired man. Then Jimin smiles, says something, Yoongi smiles back and kisses the palm of his gloved hand. They always do that, half because Jimin seems to need it, half because the audience fucking loves them for it.

“This one isn't the heart breaking one.” Taehyung tells him as Jimin gets in the middle of the rink “They saved that track for the free.”

“Of course they did.”

The music starts, Jimin moves.

The thing about Jimin's skating is that it's a dance. It's fluid, beautiful to look at, a fucking show for everyone to watch. Yoongi's songs are made for him, only for him, forever for him, so of course it's the melody that chases Jimin, not the other way around.

Jimin is flexible in a way that shouldn't be allowed and every step, every spin, they're done so prettily it almost hurts. Then there are Jimin's jumps and those, well, those are a whole different story. Jimin jumps higher than any of them and they're hard, his body spins with a strength Jungkook is trying to achieve and Taehyung can only imitate. But it's in his second half that Jimin misses a rotation of the quad Axel and lands it bad, leg bending on the right and he falls on his side.

“Shit.” Taehyung hisses, Jungkook's body tautens “Fucking hell.”

Jimin gets up immediately, the crowd claps and cheers on him, he keeps on skating with a stiffness on his face. Jungkook glances at Yoongi, who looks fucking heartbroken, then back on Jimin. He finishes his routine beautifully either way, the rest of the elements perfect, jumps maybe a tad under rotated, but that mistake will cost him. A lot.

He smiles almost apologetically to the audience then gets out of the rink, he doesn't look Yoongi in the eyes when he puts on the protectors.

“Ah, he's pissed.” Jungkook says.

“I'd be pissed too if a fucking bad meal fucks me up like that.” Taehyung groans “Hell, I am pissed.”

 

Jimin's score is 96.05 points, which almost causes an uproar in the audience.

“Why so low?” Taehyung hisses “Seriously, judges are being stuck up bitches.”

“Probably 'cause he's the champion, so they're bastards about it.”

From the kiss and cry, Jimin shrugs and finally smiles at Yoongi, saying something to him that makes the older male snort.

Taehyung then stands up “I feel like he's gonna kick our asses at the free programs. Because he's annoyed.”

“Probably.” Jungkook stands up as well “I'm fucking tire d.”

“Same.” Taehyung grins at him “I'll see you on saturday, then.”

Jungkook nods, he points at his ankle “You should rest, put some ice on it.”

“Aw, worrying for me.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes “I wanna win against you when you're in full shape.”

“Darling, you might wanna grasp this situation in those pretty hands of yours.” Taehyung says, tilting his head to the side with red hair framing his face “'Cause this ankle is your only shot at winning.”

 

 

 

Saturday comes with Jungkook feeling like shit. He's fine physically. Mentally? Not so much.

Warm up goes well, he lands all his jumps, but there is something in his legs, something that tingles, that doesn't make him feel confident at all.

Then there's Jimin, who strided in the arena with a look of pure and utter rage and, if he knows something about him, is that an angry Jimin is a Jimin who will most likely put them all to shame.

And then, of course, there's Taehyung who's still in the lead even if with an hurt ankle and, yes, Jungkook is still bitter about it. But he notices Taehyung doesn't try any jump during warm up.

They start off with France and, shit, he's doing great.

Taehyung appears at Jungkook's side after a while. He's wearing a costume of a soft cream color, the fabric soft and hugging the curves of his body just right.

“Hey.”

“Hey.” Taehyung rolls his shoulders a few times “We're all in the first half today.”

“Thanks fuck for that, I need a nap.” Jungkook scratches his collarbones “How are you holding up?”

Taehyung hesitates for a moment “My ankle is swollen.”

Jungkook looks at him for a few seconds, Taehyung is looking at his hands “I'm- shit, I'm sorry man.”

“Happened during the night, it hurts like a bitch. Nothing I can do about it.” Taehyung takes a deep breath “Oh, well, I'd better go, Jin-hyung is freaking out. You're up before us, right?” Jungkook nods “There's nothing wrong in taking advantage of someone's injury, you know?”

“Feels like cheating to me.”

Taehyung chuckles “You're so fucking pure. Good luck.”

“Yeah, you too.”

Taehyung walks away and, this time, the limping is obvious to anyone who's looking this way. Namjoon elbows him in the ribs.

“What was that?”

“What was what?”

“That?” Namjoon nods at Taehyung's figure “You two. Talking like normal human beings.”

“Healthy competition.” Jungkook replies “He's good, like, I'm not gonna lie about it. We're not complete assholes, you know, we can still talk without scratching our faces like drunk bitches during a shitty wedding.”

Namjoon hums “Whatever. Start focusing.”

 

 

Namjoon tells him the usual, with the board dividing them, the older man's hands over his, and then “Aim for gold, Jungkook.”

Skate to the middle, bow, focus, tune out the noises if you can, starting position. It's a routine, muscle memory almost as much as the coreography itself.

Now, many would argue that the tango from Scent of a woman might be a cliché in figure skating, but Jungkook doesn't give a damn. There are just so many songs in the world and, unlike Jimin, he doesn't have a boyfriend who composes music for him. Besides, Namjoon got his hands on the track first, rearranged it, added violins strings where there weren't, boosted a little of the basses, now it sounds more haunting than sensual.

He's got for quads planned. His legs still tingle.

His first quad Loop is good, he lands it nicely, he keeps going. There's adrenaline and something else in his blood, pumping hard in his system, he can't give it a name.

Quad Salchow, and he knows it's fucking perfect, he moves to the camel spin, leg raised as high as he can without overdoing it, arms slightly bended so that they give the movement a better flow. He grabs the back of his foot, keeps spinning, then down to the sitting spin, simple arm variation, then the half Bielmann, the spin sequence it's done for the first half. More steps, more choreo, more embellishment, the music is nearly reaching the first climax, the one everyone is waiting for. Jungkook grins at the judges as he passes them by, sets up his triple flip, it goes well. First combination, quad Lutz, triple Toe, no hesitation, landing just a tad hard, but he can work with that. Last quad, Toe Loop. He gets that as well, some tension slides away. Next combination, triple Axel and double Toe, he's good. He's doing good.

The final set of jumps and he's on the podium. Triple Axel, Toe, triple Salchow. It's a beautiful combination, one of his bests. And he falls.

The moment he's done with the Axel he feels that tingling in his legs, when the blade touches the ice is in the worst possible angle, edge completely fucked up, he hits the ice on his right side, hip colliding hard with the cold ice. The shock hurts more, makes him dizzy for a moment, but he's up again, body aching, he still manages to give them a Salchow and he makes it a quad. He lands it a little hard, not graceful at all, but he still lands it. Then again, he missed two elements, so he's not sure how much that extra quad will give him. Then steps, spins, hydroblade that makes the crowd go wild, final death drop and scratch spin. His routine is done.

God knows he's not fucking happy. At all.

He still forces a smile, breathing hard through his nose, bows a little more theatrically than due so that he doesn't show how pissed he is, he's just petty like that.

He gets off the rink, Namjoon wordlessly gives him the protectors.

“That was-”

“I know.” Jungkook cuts him off, already making his way to the kiss and cry.

“No, that was fucking beautiful.”

Jungkook frowns “I missed two elements.”

“The rest was fucking wonderful. You had them all wrapped around your pinky, trust me. And the fact that you made the Salchow a quad left me speechless.” they sit on the blue couch “Fuck it, it made me proud.”

Jungkook looks at him then, the man staring in front of him, eyes fixed on the screen waiting for the score.

“Thank you.” Jungkook whispers, Namjoon squeezes his knee.

Technical score: 123.

Presentation: 97.07

Deduction: -2.

A total score of 218.07. Jungkook gapes, Namjoon squeezes him harder “Fucking told you it was beautiful.” he murmurs, Jungkook finds himself smiling.

 

 

 

There's not much to say about Taehyung's routine. He skates on a japanese song, the sort of melody that reminds of Jungkook of a fight in the ancient times. And it's beautiful, of course it is, to the point where Jungkook wonders if Taehyung lied to him about the swollen ankle. That is, until Taehyung fails his Salchow. In the worst way possible.

It's from the moment he sets off that Jungkook knows that it's not gonna end well. The quad turns into a double because his axis is completely wrong and when Taehyung lands, his blade barely touches the ice before he's on the cold ground landing hard on his left arm.

Both Jungkook and Namjoon stand up from the bench in shock, because last time Taehyung fell that hard he couldn't skate for a full year. The audience gasps. Taehyung starts getting up but it takes him at least two seconds, that's how hard it was, but he still gets up on his feet, face twisted in pain, and he keeps going. The rest of the routine is done in a way that Jungkook can only describe as desperate. Every step, jump, spin, is flawless again, but there's something burning in his eyes and in the power of his moves that just, somehow, adds even more to the routine.

Jungkook feels the burning of want again. The more Taehyung has that look in his eyes, the more he wants. He guesses it's something he can't help. Not when Taehyung looks like that, like there is fire above the ice.

 

Techinal score: 124.02

Presentation: 98

Deduction: -2

Final score: 220.02

 

Jin pats his back with a wide smile, because that is still a fucking impressive, if not almost impossible, score. But Taehyung doesn't smile. Not even once.

 

 

This time, it's Jungkook who goes to sit next to Taehyung. The red haired barely spares him a glance, too busy pretending he's reading something on his phone.

“You okay?” he asks, carefully.

“Nope.” Taehyung replies “I'm so fucking pissed I feel like throwing this phone on the ground.”

Jungkook lets a few moments of silence go by “You still did amazing.”

“Yeah, that's what pisses me off. I could've done great.”

“Your ankle is a mess, stop beating yourself down.”

Taehyung locks the screen of the phone and looks at him “What's your excuse?” he asks “You would've won if it wasn't for that jump.”

“Don't remind me.” Jungkook slumps back on the bench “My legs felt weird, all tingly and shit. I'm surprised I even landed those jumps.”

Taehyung hums “When it's a bad day it really is a bad day. We can't really help it.”

“Yeah, we can't.”

“Let's hope Jimin does better.”

“Shit, he has to. If he doesn't he's gonna be so pissy for the next month.”

“Shit, you're right.” Taehyung fakes a shiver “I ain't about that life.”

 

 

Jimin is up. Hands held tight by Yoongi's own, the man telling him hushed words, Jimin has his eyes closed, nodding to him.

“You know the name of the song?” Jungkook asks Taehyung “It's the sad one, right?”

“Yeah. It's called First Love.”

“Well, we can all try to guess who the first love is.” Jungkook says with a smile “Those two are disgusting.”

“Have you ever heard them fuck?”

“Shit, no.”

“Lucky you.” Taehyung chuckles “It was honestly the filthiest thing-”

“Not another word.”

Yoongi kisses the palm of his hand, Jimin takes a deep breath and skates to the center.

The moment the song starts, Jungkook knows what Taehyung meant with hearbreaking. There are no lyrics, there never are, but the piano is slow and haunting, the rythm set by low drums.

Jimin's face alone tells a whole story, his movements are almost an extra factor, first quad Salchow is perfect, he moves to the next one. A quad Toe Loop that looks almost weightless in the air, and even lighter on the landing. Jungkook holds his breath, the song starts picking up unexpectedly, strings of violins suddenly giving the song an even more wrenching desperation and Jungkook can see it, the love Yoongi is talking about, he's right there. Everyone knows it.

Another jump, triple Flip, flawless in the execution and landing. Camel spin, then a catch foot layback, down in a sit spin and up in a Bielmann. Every element flows just perfectly with the song, Jimin keeps them all strong and hard, tight in just the right way, but then the transitions lose all of that power to give in to perfect smoothness.

It's not about gold anymore, not for Jimin, at this point it's all about the performance, it's about getting revenge for the failure of his short program. The next steps are pure dance, contemporary elements that shouldn't look that right on an ice rink, but Jimin is the only one who can do something like that.

When the song hits hard again with a climax, Jimin jumps a quad Toe, then a triple Toe, a combination that is beautiful, where he doesn't miss a beat.

A triple Axel with a Loop on the end, arms raised above his head in a perfect shape. And Jungkook knows that the points for the presentation will be huge, with the way Jimin keeps his facial expression that passionate, on the verge of sadness, the audience has never been that quiet before.

Triple Lutz, single Toe, triple Salchow, not even a smudge to them.

The final quad Lutz then Jimin is on the spins and everyone knows that Jimin's spins are a beauty to behold, his body flexible and fluid enough to almost lose shape with the right speed.

Then Jimin hydroblades so close to the ice, body barely above it, muscles flexed, his fingertips the only thing that keep him from falling, the only way an element like that should be, his eyes are on the judges the whole time.

He arches his back, head thrown back, arms open, left leg slithgly bent as he glides to the center of the rink, final spins, then it's done.

He stops with his hands over his cheeks, almost as if a lover were cupping his face and the whole arena trembles with the cheers of the audience.

Taehyung jumps on his feet, ankle forgotten “That's my bitch!” he screams, laughing hysterically. Jungkook just stares with his mouth open.

Jimin's arms fall on his side and he looks around almost as if he can't believe he's just done it. Then he smiles wide, eyes disappearing, a tear slips down his cheek and his shoulders shake with sobs of joy and, fuck it, he deserves that.

He manages his bows, skates out of the rink and throws his arms around Yoongi, jumping excitedly with the older man who's laughing along.

“Did you fucking see that?!” Jungkook hears him scream “Holy shit! Fuck me in the-”

“Cameras!” Yoongi shouts back, poking his side and shaking his head.

Taehyung sits back, still too excited.

“You look like you're gonna piss yourself.” Jungkook says, his fucking hands are shaking.

“I feel like I will piss myself!” Taehyung exclaims, looking at him with a huge smile, all boxy and warm “That's a World Record, I know it is! Oh, we lost Jeon, we lost so bad.”

“We sure fucking did.” Jungkook can't be mad. Not when Jimin skated like that.

 

Technical score: 127.92

Presentation: 99.56

Deduction: 0

Total score: 227,48

With the short's score added, it's a total of 323.98 points. New World Record.

Jimin is first and, even though more than half of the competition has still to go, no one will top that. No one.

 

 

 

It ends up in a way that makes Jungkook's chest swell with pride.

He ends up on the podium with a Bronze, Taehyung with a Silver, Jimin with a Gold.

They have their arms around Jimin's back, holding their medals up, smiling for the cameras.

“Three asians.” Jimin mutters “America is shaking.”

“Don't make me snort.” Taehyung replies.

“Pigs are flying.” Jungkook adds.

“Guys, seriously.”

There's a moment of silence. Then-

“Snatched.” Jimin murmurs, Taehyung snorts and Jungkook can't help but laugh along.

 

 

 

This time, the food is better than last time. And, Jungkook can see lobster over there, he knows that at some point he's gonna fill his plate with it. For now, he settles on the starters, enjoying the shrimp salad and the champagne.

Namjoon downs the rest of his drink and puts the flute down on the table “Gotta go make a call real quick.” he says “Save me some lobster.”

“Sure.” Jungkook nods, Namjoon pats his shoulder as he walks away, leaving the beautiful room of the hotel, usually used to held press conferences and such. Now, it's just packed with skaters, coaches, a few journalists here and there.

“Jeon Jungkook?”

Jungkook spins around and is met with a heart shaped smile.

“Jung Hoseok.” the man says, accent thick in his words “I'm Tae's choreographer.”

“I know.” Jungkook puts down his glass and shakes Hoseok's hand, smiling at him “It's good to meet you at last.”

“Ah, yes, fucking airline cancelled my flight so I couldn't join the fun.” he says, chuckling a little, his voice is somewhat loud but not in an annoying way “Say, did Jin and Namjoon almost kill each other?”

“Honestly, Jin tried to drown him in a pile of snow.” Jungkook frowns “The interesting part is that he almost succeeded.”

“That's Jin for you.” Hoseok nods to himself “Tae's gonna be here soon.” Jungkook hums “Congratulations for the bronze, that was an amazing performance. Who makes your choreos?”

“My former ballet teacher, I add some stuff here and there.”

“I like them.” he says “I've seen your routine at the Four CCs, that was beautiful.”

Jungkook chuckles, a little flustered maybe, but he nods anyways “Thank you. Taehyung's choreos are incredible, you're talented as hell.”

Hoseok waves a hand at him, scrunching up his nose “I'm not that incredible, the only reason they look good is because Tae is the one skating and- oh, there he is.”

Jungkook follows Hoseok's gaze until it lands on Taehyung, who walks inside the room still limping a little, he grabs two flutes of champagne from a silver plate one of the waiters is holding, he downs one, puts it back on the silver plate, takes a third one and walks to them with two glasses.

“I need to get drunk.” he says as soon as he's in hearing distance “I feel like shit.”

Hoseok snorts, Taehyung pounds the second champagne, hissing a little “He wins silver and he feels like shit.”

“Yah!” Taehyung exclaims with wide eyes “I feel like shit 'cause my ankle hurts like a bitch.”

Hoseok rolls his eyes “If you're gonna be this pissy then do get drunk, I ain't dealing with your ass tonight.”

“Would be a first.” Taehyung mumbles, he puts on the table the empty glass and starts sipping his third one.

Hoseok suddenly smiles, looking past Taehyung “I'm gonna go say hi to Yoongi and Jimin, didn't even have time to congratulate him today.”

Hoseok pats Jungkook's shoulder, walks past Taehyung and gives his ass a slap just for good measure.

“I hate him.” Taehyung murmurs, massaging his butt with a pout “But he's so hot that I can't even stay mad at him.”

Jungkook smiles “He seems tough.”

“He works my ass off, for real.” Taehyung says, eyeing the salad and shrimp cocktails “When he's in a bad mood I forget what daylight looks like.”

“It pays off though.”

Taehyung shrugs “I guess it does. Shit, is that italian salad?”

“Yep.”

Taehyung grabs a plate and start filling it with the food “I fucking love this shit.”

“Really? You like all that mayo?”

“I like food that sends you to the grave.”

Jungkook looks elsewhere as Taehyung stuffs his mouth with pees and carrots held together by mayo, he finds Yoongi and Hoseok chatting, Jimin clinging on Yoongi with his eyes half closed. He's either drunk or just sleepy as hell. Maybe both.

“You know what, we should celebrate.” Taehyung suddenly says, cheeks full of salad, he chews a bit then swallows it down “We were all together on the podium and we did good despite ankles and tingly legs.”

Jungkook hums “We should. Maybe tomorrow we can go drink something with Jimin.”

“We could, yeah.” Taehyung puts down the empty plate and dabs his mouth with a paper towel “But, like, I meant celebrate now.”

“Oh.” Jungkook frowns “Okay. What do you wanna do?” he takes a sip of champagne.

Taehyung gives him a smirk “I was thinking that maybe you could eat me out.”

Jungkook splutters, choking on the champagne and wheezing loud enough to earnt the attention of some nearby athletes. Taehyung raises an eyebrow at him.

“Keep it together, sailor.” he says, the corner of his lips curls up “So?”

“So what?” Jungkook rubs the back of his hand on his mouth, cleaning off some drops of champagne.

“Wanna eat me out?”

 

 

 

The moment Taehyung pushes him against the door, Jungkook briefly remembers telling Jimin that he wouldn't sleep with Tae again. Because, he quotes, “I'm not fucking stupid”.

Well. He is.

Taehyung's lips are attached to the column of his throat, hands already going to unbuckle the leather belt of his pants, Jungkook lets his hands roam on Taehyung's back, slowly dipping under the jacket.

“Why do we always do this after the after party?” Taehyung mumbles on his skin, finally spilling the belt off his pants “We always have too much clothes on.”

Jungkook frowns as Taehyung pulls his arms back so that Jungkook can brush the jacket off his shoulders, still sucking on Jungkook's neck “What do you mean always, we fucked only once before an- ouch! Did you just bite me?”

“You're annoying.” he says, nibbling on his jaw “You talk to much.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes but before he can protest Taehyung's lips are on his and, truthfully, at that point words are useless. Because maybe he missed this, maybe he missed the feeling of Taehyung's lips on his, a little chapped because of how cold and dry the arena is.

Taehyung hums, hands gripping at his hips and he parts his lips, letting Jungkook in and, as soon as he does, Jungkook pulls back.

“Fuck no.”

“What?” Taehyung frowns, eyes scanning his face “What's wrong?”

“You taste of italian salad.”

A pause “And?”

“And I'm not kissing you when you taste of mayo and stale veggies. Go brush your teeth.”

Taehyung blinks, then he scoffs and shakes his head “Dude, I'm half hard, you can't just-”

“If you don't go swallow some toothpaste right now then you might as well leave.”

Taehyung sighs and turns around, walking to the bathroom “Then start taking off your clothes and get on the bed or something.”

Jungkook arches an eyebrow eventhough Taehyung is already in the bathroom, he goes to the bed and starts undoing his shirt “Someone's eager.”

“Excuse me, I call it multitasking. I'm just great like that.” Taehyung says from the bathroom.

“Uh huh.”

Jungkook gets rid of his clothes, leaving on only his briefs. He doesn't know if Taehyung grasped the idea, but Jungkook kind of wants to enjoy this, none of that hurried sex of that night in Korea.

He sits on the bed, rubbing his neck, he wonders if maybe he should feel a little embarassed about this. Him, waiting for Taehyung sitting on the bed so that he can eat him out. Actually, fuck maybe, he should feel embarassed. But he doesn't have time to be embarassed, not when suddenly from the door Taehyung's arm comes out, in his hand he has his jacket, he drops it on the floor. Jungkook frowns. After a few seconds, Tae's hand reappears, he drops on the floor his tie as well, the arm goes back inside the bathroom.

“What the fuck are you doing?”

Suddenly, Taehyung's pants are thrown against the wall, his leg appears, perfectly raised straight, he bends it a little and rubs the tallon of his foot against the wall.

“Seducing you.” he says, still in the bathroom, even the leg disappears behind the wall again.

“I'm legit waiting for you on a bed, I'll take a wild guess and say that you already seduced me.”

“It's all about the build up.” Taehyung's leg appears again, this time he has his boxer briefs dangling from his foot.

Jungkook sighs “Those boxers have Winnie The Pooh printed on them.”

“So?”

“So you're giving me a streap tease with PG 12 underwear.”

“Just imagine they're lingerie or something.” the briefs fall from his foot, leg disappearing again.

“Taehyung,” Jungkook takes a deep breath “You're, honest to God, one of the hottest people I've ever met, you can get me hard in a matter of seconds, but this whole deal is the worst turn off of my life.”

He hears a scoff from the bathroom, then Taehyung comes out naked and walks to the bed “You're so ungrateful.” he says as he gets on Jungkook's lap, legs wrapping around his waist “I put up a nice show for you-” Jungkook rolls his eyes and lets his hands roam to Taehyung's ass, giving it a firm squeeze “I go to the length of giving you a streap tease with, mind you, a hurt ankle-”

“Uh huh.” Jungkook latches his lips on Taehyung's neck, teeth scraping the skin that, annoyingly enough, still tastes good, hands kneading at the flesh of Taehyung's ass.

“And you, you shame my Pooh underwear, disregard completely my efforts.” Taehyung swallows, Jungkook feels his breathing getting a little faster “Tell me I'm a turn off? Fuck you, I'm a goddamn vision, I-”

“Oh my God.” Jungkook pulls away from his neck to look at him in the eyes “Taehyung, shut the fuck up.”

Taehyung grins “Make me.”

Jungkook almost throws him off of his lap and onto the bed, fast enough so that Taehyung doesn't see him smiling, the red haired gets on his knees, hips raised and cheek pressed against the pillow.

“Part your legs a bit.” Jungkook says, Taehyung complies and Jungkook spreads his cheeks a little, leaning down and biting softly at the soft skin.

“Oh, so now you're the one who's gonna take his time?”

Jungkook bites harder, Taehyung shivers just a bit. And, honestly, that's as good as a reaction he'll get from Taehyung before he gets to the real deal, the stubborn brat.

Slowly, he makes his way further down, leaving small bites on the skin, little red marks that will most likely disappear too soon, then he licks a broad stripe from Taehyung's balls up to his hole.

“Ah, shit.” Taehyung hums, ass pushing back on Jungkook's face.

Jungkook grips his hips and starts giving quick licks around the rim, light and teasing because, yes, he does intend on taking his time. He feels like he deserves it. He closes his eyes when he starts sucking on his rim, Taehyung's moan spilling out immediately, voice fucking deep and it manages to turn him on so much it's unbelievable. Jungkook slips his tongue inside and Taehyung stills, legs quivering sligthly, a choked moan falls from his mouth.

“Shit, like that.” he raises his hips a little more, Jungkook hums as he mouths over Taehyung's hole and, again, dips his tongue inside.

Fuck, he likes this way too much. He likes the way Taehyung seems to turn so pliant, even if just for a few moments, loves the trembling of his legs and fucking adores the sounds he's making, because Taehyung is vocal, and he knows how loud he can actually be and Jungkook can't wait for when he loses control completely.

Jungkook dips his tongue deeper, hands skimming over the inside of Taehyung's thighs, skin smooth and warm, and Taehyung is so much broader than he usually looks when he's naked, large shoulders and firm thighs, muscles stiffening at every lap of his tongue against his rim.

“Holy-” Taehyung moans breathily “You're so fucking good at this, but sloppy as hell.”

Jungkook hums, he grips Taehyung's ass and squeezes it as he keeps fucking his tongue inside the puckered hole, Taehyung moans a bit louder and Jungkook closes his eyes. So what if he's sloppy? He likes it sloppy, he likes having spit drip down his chin, he likes the wet noises his tongue makes everytime it thrusts up inside Taehyung's ass, sue him. Damn it, he has a whole “I love eating Taehyung's ass out” kink and he just realizes it now.

Then, the moment Jungkook prods Taehyung's entrance with both his tongue and the pad of his thumb, Taehyung whines. He whines sweet, higher than expected and Kim Taehyung just fucking whined. Jungkook pulls back, eyes shut close, he squeezes his clothed erection and hisses.

“No no, why did you stop?” Taehyung pushes his ass back and Jungkook manages to open his eyes.

“You have no idea of- just give me a moment.”

“Fuck your moment.” Taehyung tilts his head to look at him, eyes wide and dark “You get your tongue back in my ass right now.”

Jungkook arches an eyebrow and, before he knows what he's doing, he grips Taehyung's hips and flips him around, Taehyung letting out a startle yelp when his back hits the matress.

“How flexible are you? Asking for a friend.”

Taehyung chuckles breathlessly “Quite flexible.”

“Good.”

Jungkook grabs Taehyung's thighs and pushes them up, he manages to put Taehyung's calves on his shoulders and leans down, Taehyung bending beautifully beneath him, golden skin flushed and cock hard against his stomach.

“Shit, why is that so hot?” Taehyung bites the corner of his lip “More.”

Jungkook complies, pushing his body down further until Taehyung's knees are almost at each side of his face, the red haired swallows hard and Jungkook can see that like this it's harder for him to breathe.

“This okay?”

Taehyung nods and Jungkook plants his hands on the back of Taehyung's thighs to keep his leg in place before he's back at sucking on Taehyung's rim, lapping at the hole, when he dips his tongue inside again Taehyung clenches around him.

Taehyung squirms a little, head thrown back and hands grasping at the sheets, fleeting moans dripping from his lips like a prayer, Jungkook decides that it's not enough so he tries pushing his finger inside again.

“Fuck, yes.” Taehyung grabs his own legs, pulling them even further down “God, you eat ass like a starved man.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes, he has half an idea of telling him to shut up once more, instead he pushes his middle finger inside Taehyung's hole, still mouthing and lapping at the rim, Taehyung's body shakes for a moment. He thrusts his finger inside and out until there's barely no resistance, then he starts rubbing the pad of his finger against his walls, looking for that particular spot. And when he finds it Taehyung's eyes fly open and the sound that comes out of his mouth is fucking sinful.

Jungkook smirks against his hole, gets his tongue deeper and keeps pressing against Taehyung's prostate softly.

“Oh-” Taehyung chokes on a moan, brow furrowed and sweat damping his hair “Oh God, that's so good.”

Jungkook keeps massaging the bundle of nerves and fucking his tongue inside, he opens his eyes and sees Taehyung's cock flushed red, leaking and dripping precum on the boy's chest, Taehyung's moans getting longer and louder at every press of his pad.

He presses harder, Taehyung cries out and when he opens his eyes, they're glassy and unfocused, he looks downright wrecked, Jungkook can't help but feel proud of that. 'Cause, damn, it takes effort to reduce him like that.

Jungkook snakes a hand over Taehyung's stomach, fingers brushing against the skin almost feather light until he grips Taehyung's cock and strokes it hard and fast, massaging Taehyung's prostate faster, fist tight. Taehyung's hips falter and there are tears at the corner of his eyes and then, as if Jungkook wasn't having a hard time at not coming in his underwear already, Taehyung whimpers. Jungkook groans, strokes him faster, fist tight around his dick, presses against Taehyung's prostate and Taehyung comes with a spasm, back arching and toes curling, his whole body taut. Jungkook keeps his ministrations going until Taehyung sobs and tries to push him away with his foot. He pulls back and slowly retrieves his finger, Taehyung wincing a little.

Jungkook lets Taehyung's leg fall on the matress and sits back, admiring the way Taehyung's chest heaves, body still shaking with the high of the orgasm.

“You good?”

Taehyung weakly raises his hand and gives him a thumb up, Jungkook snorts. Jungkook notices just now that, even though Taehyung is made of firm muscles everywhere, his stomach is still a little soft. Which is so fucking cute Jungkook doesn't know what to do with the information.

Taehyung pushes himself up slowly, eyeing Jungkook with a grin, then he crawls over to him and licks at Jungkook's chin.

“What the fuck-”

“Cleaning the mess on your face.” Taehyung replies, he licks a long stripe from his chin to his bottom lip “You're sloppy but I like it.”

“Clearly.”

“Wanna fuck my mouth?”

Jungkook's dick gives an interested twitch in his briefs “Yeah.”

Taehyung, maybe a little too cheerfully, hops off the bed and gets on his knees, gesturing for Jungkook to stand up, Jungkook complies and Taehyung's hands are already on his underwear, tugging it down just enough so that his cock springs free. He takes it in his hand and mouths over it, tongue flat against the underside, Jungkook lets out a moan. Hell, he hasn't touched him once, he was aching, and Taehyung's lips are soft and his tongue warm.

Taehyung then wraps his lips around the head and sucks, tongue teasing at the slit before he goes down on him, slowly swallowing him down, humming around it.

He looks up at Jungkook, a perfect eyebrow raised and Jungkook catches on. He slides a hand through his hair, grabbind a handful of red locks and he feels Taehyung hollowing his cheeks, jaw slack. He starts pushing in shallowly, groaning at the warmth of Taehyung's mouth.

Taehyung pinches his thigh and gives him this look that definitely screams Is that all? Because Taehyung is a brat even with a cock in his mouth.

So Jungkook tugs at Taehyung's hair and thrusts inside his mouth faster, working on a steady rhythm until he feels the tip of his cock against the baco of Taehyung's throat.

Shit, Taehyung.” Jungkook's hips falter but he keeps his hips working until he feels Taehyung's throat constricting around him, the boy choking a little “You okay, yeah?”

And Taehyung, Kim fucking Taehyung, rolls his eyes at him and drags his teeth on the underside of Jungkook's cock. And Jungkook knows he meant it as a keep going you fucking weak idiot, but all Jungkook knows is that he sees white behind his eyelids and his hips start moving almost on their own, fucking Taehyung's mouth hard and fast, the boy humming and staring at him with a satisfied glint in his eyes. And, even if he won't admit it out loud, Jungkook fucking loves it.

He comes after a particularly hard jab, Taehyung just closing his eyes and letting him come down his throat, swallowing around his dick until Jungkook pushes him away.

Taehyung hums, rubs the back of his hand over his mouth and takes a deep breath “I have a feeling my voice will be shit tomorrow.”

Jungkook sits heavily on the bed, not entirely sure his legs will keep working “Well, you asked for it.”

“I did.” he raises a hand “Help a brother out?”

Jungkook snorts and grabs Taehyung's hand, pulling him up until Taehyung stands on wobbly legs.

“Well, this was fun.” Taehyung says, grinning “Is this becoming a habit?”

Jungkook stays quiet for a moment. This really shouldn't become a habit. Then again, apart from mild annoyance, he doesn't exactly have strong feelings for Taehyung. Not those kind of feelings anyways.

“If you want to.” he finally says, Taehyung nods.

“Well, I guess you can be my Championship's fuck buddy.”

“That's... nice.” Jungkook replies flatly “I'm flattered.”

“Ah, don't get your panties in a twist.” Taehyung starts looking for his clothes, he spots the pile of pants and shirt in front of the bathroom and goes there, he starts putting on his shirt “Also, loved whatever you did with my ass.”

“Loved whatever you did with my dick.”

“Oh, I know.” he says, putting on his Winnie The Pooh briefs “Trust me. You looked like you were- oh shit.” Taehyung starts patting the pockets of his jacket, then he grabs his pants and does the same with those “Oh no.”

“What?”

“My fucking keycard.” Taehyung hisses, he drops the pants and groans “Oh, fuck me, Seokjin has it.”

“Just call him and meet somewhere so that you can get in your room.”

“No, he's already in his room.”

Jungkook frowns “Then what's the-”

Taehyung turns around and looks at him “He's in there with your coach.”

Jungkook lets the words sink in. Slowly, but surely, they start making sense “Wait. With Namjoon?” Taehyung nods “As in they're fucking? My coach and your coach are fucking?”

“I saw them as I was getting at the after party.” Taehyung grimaces “They were making out against a wall. It looked pretty intense, like, real angry make out session.”

Jungkook gags “Shit, I have horrible mental images.”

Taehyung nibbles on his bottom lip “Maybe I can go to Jimin's room.”

“Do you want Yoongi to kill you? Because he will, especially if they're fucking and, knowing them, they are.” Jungkook takes a shuddering breath “Probably really filthy celebration sex.”

“Well, I guess I'll sleep on a sofa in the hotel lobby then.” Taehyung mutters, getting his pants again “Great.”

Jungkook sighs “Just- look, just sleep here.”

Taehyung's eyes widen a little and he stays fixed on the spot, shifting his weight from one leg to the other awkwardly “You sure?”

“I ain't letting you sleep on an armchair with that ankle, it's swollen as fuck. Seriously, you can sleep here.”

Taehyung smiles at him, gratefulness clear in the softening of his features “Thanks Jeon. You gonna lend me a shirt or-”

Jungkook gestures to his suitcase, thrown carelessly on the floor, open and with clothes scattered everywhere around it “Take what you want.”

Taehyung picks one of his favorite t-shirts, a black one that already looks big on him, Taehyung practically swims inside it, but he seems comfy and satisfied with it. He bends to get his clothes so that he can fold them and Jungkook eyes Taehyung's Pooh briefs. On the back there's Winnie with a jar of honey floating in the air, the honey spells “Honey Butt”. Jungkook frowns but doesn't say anything.

Taehyung moves to the bed, but Jungkook immediately gets up on his elbows “No, we're brushing our teeth first.”

Taehyung rolls his eyes but turns around anyway, followed by Jungkook as they go in the bathroom “You're obsessed with this teeth thing.” he says as he reaches for Jungkook's tooth brush, he grips Taehyung's wrist immediately.

“What do you think you're doing?”

“Brushing my teeth?”

“With my tooth brush?”

“You see any other tooth brush around?”

Jungkook takes a long, deep breath “Let me get this straight: you though of brushing your teeth with my tooth brush after you've had my dick in your mouth and swallowed my cum?”

Taehyung blinks and then smiles “Ah, I see why that would be a problem.”

“Use your fingers, you fucking child.” Jungkook mutters, letting go of his wrist and gripping his tooth brush. He squeezes a generous amount of toothpaste on it, then Taehyung puts his index finger in front of Jungkook's face and he squeezes toothpaste there as well. As Jungkook brushes his teeth and Taehyung just rubs the pad of his finger over his pearly whites, Jungkook has the time to look at their reflection. They look like a mess. They kind of are. And Taehyung looks around five years younger with that shirt on, 'cause seriously, it's way too big, but he decides to not mind too much.

 

He thinks he's gonna fall asleep immediately. After all, they're tired, fucking exhausted. Turns out Taehyung has other plans.

As they lay in the bed side to side, lights down low, Taehyung is restless.

“I'm so happy for Chim.”

“Mmmh.”

“He deserves it, you know? He gave up his own youth for Figure Skating, he deserves this and more.”

“Yeah, he does.”

“Did you see the look on Yoongi's face? I bet my dick he fell in love all over again.”

“Lovely.”

Taehyung pauses “You're not really into this whole pillow talk thing, are you?”

Jungkook looks at him in disbelief, Taehyung is staring at the ceiling “If this is your idea of pillow talk then we really need to have a chat.” he sighs “But either way, I'm shit at pillow talk, so.”

Taehyung rolls around so that he's laying on his side, looking at Jungkook with pursed lips, Jungkook arches an eyebrow.

“What?”

“I have a confession to make.”

“Shoot.”

Taehyung bites his bottom lip “I can't sleep unless I'm hugging someone.”

Jungkook blinks a few times “Wait, what?”

“At home I have this huge pillow of Kumamon to hug when I sleep alone, Yoongi-hyung bought it for me. But I don't have anything here.”

“So?”

Taehyung arches an eyebrow, Jungkook groans.

“Oh my God, you want me to spoon you?”

“No, I want to spoon you. Like, I need to or I won't sleep.”

“Then stay awake.”

“Fine, I'll just keep talking to myself, I'm sure you'll have a great night if I do, after all there's not much we can do about it so-”

“I fucking hate you.” Jungkook mumbles, turning around so that he can give his back to Taehyung. The other giggles happily and then snakes his arms around Jungkook's waist, legs slotting together and nose nuzzling the back of his neck.

“This is so nice.” Taehyung sighs “Thanks.”

“Whatever.”

“You make such a good little spoon.”

“I will kick you off this bed.”

Taehyung then shuts up. Jungkook feels like drifting off, then he opens his eyes in the dark room.

“Taehyung?”

“Mh?”

“Why didn't you participate at the Grand Prix this year?”

There's a short pause, the Taehyung hums.

“My ankle hasn't healed yet.”

“Wait, what?”

“I mean, it is healed, it's fine, I can skate again, just-” Jungkook hears Taehyung licking his lips “It's just that it's still not perfect, probably never will be again, you have no idea how much I lost in terms of rotation and strength. So I can't exactly do everything, you know, it would be too much, my doctor recommended to choose events and not go overboard. And I still don't feel confident enough to participate at the Grand Prix, it's so fucking tiring man. Too many competitions too close with each other. I probably won't be at the Olympics next year either.” there's silence for a few seconds “But it's fine, I still get to skate, that's already a miracle for me.”

Jungkook understands. When Taehyung got injured, the news shocked the whole world of Figure Skating. There were articles over articles covering the news, weeping for the possible death of a career that could've really changed the history of Figure Skating. Then he came back and, suddenly, everyone had something to look forward to. The great comeback of Korea's precious jewel. Namjoon didn't talk about nothing else but that for weeks.

“What about you, though?” Taehyung asks “Why don't you do the Prix?”

“Ah, that's- I don't feel ready yet.” he admits “I started skating late, you know that. I guess I want to really work my bones for it, then maybe I'll participate as well, same goes for the Olympics. Besides, I still go to college, so-”

“Whoah, really?”

“Yeah, my mom didn't leave me a choice. You want to skate for a living, you also get an education, that's what she told me.”

“What do you study?”

“I'm majoring in Architecture.”

“Shit, man. Really?”

“Yeah, I like it. If Figure Skating goes to shit I can still get a job I enjoy.”

“Smart.” Taehyung chuckles and pulls him a bit closer “You gonna be at the Gala tomorrow?”

“Nah, I can't, my flight leaves early and I have a whole load of shit to do back home, also I have an exam coming up.” he replies, he feels his eyelids getting heavy “You?”

“My ankle hurts too much, I'll leave early tomorrow as well.”

Jungkook hums “You wanna come with me to see the seaside tomorrow morning? We can have breakfast somewhere there.”

“You want me to come?”

“You're not a total asshole when you're off the rink, so sure.”

“Okay.” Taehyung yawns “Sure, let's do that.”

Soon enough, Taehyung is asleep and Jungkook feels like drifting off as well, and for real this time.

Then Taehyung elbows him in the stomach. Jungkook closes his eyes.

Taehyung starts stirring.

Taehyung manages to knee him in the ass.

“I hate you so fucking much.” Jungkook whispers, forcing himself to fall asleep.

 

 

 

 

OCTOBER, LONDON

 

 

 

Here's the thing about Jimin's birthday parties: there's a lot of people. Half of them, Jungkook doesn't know them. A good portion of the other half, Jungkook knows them only because of fashion magazines. The rest are skaters that Jungkook has met at one point or another, some of them are actually friends with him. So it's not bad, it never is, Jimin knows how to have a good party even though he hates people throwing up on his carpets. Then again, it's his fault if there's always too much alcohol.

Jungkook skims through the people crowding in Jimin's living room, making a beeline for the kitchen, music a little lower now that he's close to it. As he steps inside he immediately spots Namjoon and Hoseok staring at two bottles of alcohol and talking to themselves, Jimin sitting on the counter crosslegged with a red cup in his hand.

“Hey!” Jimin exclaims as soon as he sees him, he makes grabby hands at him “Come here, my precious little brother!”

“Are you drunk?” Jungkook questions, still walking to him and letting him crush him into a hug.

“Fuck yeah, I am!” Jimin chirps, raising the cup in the air “And stoned as well! I'm hammered, mate.”

“Hammered, jesus.” Jungkook snorts “Can you be anymore british?”

“Kiss my royal british ass, the Queen might come to the party as well, you know?”

“Will she now?”

“Of course, I invited her.”

Jungkook frowns “You didn't actually-”

“Oh, no he actually did.” Hoseok says, still staring at the bottle in his hand “Does Bailey taste good with cherry vodka?”

“There's only one way to find out.” Namjoon says as he uncaps the bottle he's holding, then he starts dropping the liquid in a mixer, Hoseok shrugs and adds the Bailey as well.

“I'm not drinking that shit.” Jungkook says “You have beer or something?”

“Sure.” Jimin gestures at the fridge “Knock yourself out. Also, where's my present?”

“Didn't know I had to bring a present.” Jungkook says, grinning ear to ear as he starts looking for a beer. And yes, he knows he's only 20, but he's in England so it's perfectly legal. And he couldn't give two flying fucks either way.

“Jeon Jungkook.” Jimin says, using that voice that he thinks sounds thretening but, in reality, it sounds like a childish whine “If you truly did not bring me a present I will-”

“Chill, of course I got you a present.” Jungkook spots a Heineken bottle and, well, that will do “And it's gonna be mailed in a week at this house, I had trouble with the shipping. Don't worry, you'll love it.”

“Good.”

Jungkook shuts the fridge door close and, suddenly, there's a mop of red hair standing next to him.

“Holy shit!” Jungkook jumps, he puts a hand over his chest and closes his eyes “Oh God, you scared me to death.”

Taehyung grins “Good to see you too, Jeon.”

“Yeah, it's-” Jungkook stares at Taehyung's legs for a while “Are you wearing fishnets under those jeans?”

That's definitely a diamond shaped knit that peaks under Taehyung's jeans, ripped almost everywhere, thighs basically left bare if not for the stockings.

“I am.” Taehyung nods “I look hot in these.”

“I- sure.” Jungkook shakes his head and turns to Jimin “What did Yoongi get you for your birthday?”

Jimin hums, lips tight around a blunt that he soon lights up, blowing large clouds of smoke “A wedding ring.”

Jungkook lets the words sink in, then he gapes “Wait, what?”

“Yep.” Jimin grins.

“No, are you serious?”

“No, you idiot.” Jimin giggles and shakes his head “No wedding ring, I don't know what his present is, he says it's a surprise. So it's either a wedding ring or a cock ring, we'll see.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes as Hoseok bursts out laughing, Taehyung frowns at them.

“What the fuck is that in your glasses?” he asks, Hoseok holds up his transparent glass with pride.

There's a sickeningly thick substance there, probably caused by the creamy Bailey, but the color is reddish. It doesn't look good.

“How should we call this, Namjoon?”

“Well, Hoseok.” Namjoon holds up his glass as well “What about Cherry Triumph on a bed of Coffee Cream?”

“We could win Master Chef with this shit.” Hoseok looks at Jimin “Gordon Ramsay. Call him, now.”

Jimin frowns, taking a drag of smoke “How the fuck am I supposed to do that?”

“He's British, isn't he?” Hoseok nods to himself “So call him.”

“You think all British people have, like, a universal phone number we can call?” Jimin sighs “Besides, dude's Scottish.”

“Still British.”

Jimin makes a face “Not that easy. Still, can't call him, sorry.”

“Whatever.” Hoseok looks at Jungkook “Wanna try?” Jungkook shakes his head vigourusly “Tae?”

“That looks like poison.” Taehyung replies “Fill me a glass, bartender.”

“Coming right up.” Namjoon puts the liquid in another plastic cup and gives it to Taehyung, he raises his glass.

“Bottoms up.” he says, then all three of them down a huge gulp of... of that mistake.

That's also the moment when Seokjin walks in the kitchen, ready to give his greetings and with a beautiful package in his hands, tied with a bow and everything. That's also the time Namjoon abruptly turns around and spits the alcohol right on Jin's present for Jimin. The man closes his eyes, some of the substance ending on his face, Namjoon looks at him with wide eyes, skin going ashen.

“This,” Jin sighs, cleaning the alcohol from his face with the back of his hand “This is why I broke up with you.”

Hoseok looks quite alright, staring at the plastic cup with huge eyes “Shit, I like this.”

“Good for you.” Taehyung murmurs, lips turned down in an ugly grimace “I feel like I'm gonna throw up.”

“Please don't.” Jimin pleads.

“Guys, I feel like I'm getting somewhere with the Triumph of Cherry on-” Hoseok frowns “I forgot the name.”

Jungkook sighs “On a bed of Coffee Cream.”

“That.” Hoseok says, snapping his fingers.

“Woah.” Taehyung shivers “This shit kicks in fast.”

“It does.” Hoseok smiles “I'm a genius.”

Yoongi walks in the kitchen, looks at Jimin, then at Namjoon and Jin, he sighs “I don't wanna know.”

“Where is my wedding ring?!” Jimin suddenly screams, Yoongi looks at him like he's been through this about a hundred times.

He just walks to him and plants a kiss on Jimin's pouty lips “In a jewelry store somewhere until when I'll actually get you one.”

“Dammit.” Jimin mutters “Not this birthday either.”

“Nope.”

“I hate you.” Jimin gets off the counter and grabs Yoongi's wrist, dragging him out of the kitchen “I need a quickie.”

The other five remain alone in the kitchen.

“Did he say he needs a quickie?” Hoseok asks.

Taehyung sighs “Man, I need one too, I'm so hungry.”

All of them frown, staring at him in confusion.

“Wait, what?” Jin asks, Taehyung looks at them with huge eyes.

“I like that tart thingie.”

Silence again. Jungkook takes a long gulp of his beer, he sighs “That's pronounced quiche.”

“Oh.” Taehyung looks like he's had a sudden enlightment “Well, I want it. Or chips. Hell, I'm hungry.”

“Wanna see if we can find something to eat?” Jungkook asks, he's hungry too, having eaten almost nothing at the hotel.

“Sure.” Taehyung looks at him “Maybe there's Italian Salad.”

Jungkook chokes on his beer, Taehyung just grins.

“I don't wanna know.” Jin sighs “Where do I put this godforsaken present?”

“I'll show you.” Namjoon says, gesturing for Jin to follow him.

“I'm gonna experiment some more. Hey!” he points at Taehyung “If your career fails, I could become a bartender or some shit.”

“No, you can't.” Taehyung nods at Jungkook to get out of the kitchen, they leave Hoseok with a indignified scowl on his face.

 

 

 

 

Jungkook isn't sure of how it happens, but they end up like this.

Jimin has a huge balcony with fluffy armchairs and blankets everywhere and scented candles. Taehyung found some weed and more beer. So they both sit on one of those armchairs, covered in too many blankets but, fuck it, it's cold as hell outside, smoking cheap weed and gulping down cold beer.

And Taehyung talks a lot, more than usual, when he's high. Jungkook though, he finds out that when he's drunk he doesn't really mind listening to the never ending rambling.

“I exit the toilet, yeah?” Taehyung gestures wildly, the joint between his lips “So here I am, barbeque sauce on my titties, and who do I see taking a piss?”

“Who?” Jungkook asks, taking the joint from Taehyung's mouth and taking a lungful.

“Yuzuru fucking Hanyu.”

“Shit, really?”

“And I'm so surprised, but then I'm like dude, you're at the World's Championships, of course Hanyu is here. So I'm like, fuck it, I gotta be his friend. So I go to the urinal next to his, start doing my business but, like, I just took a piss so nothing comes out and I'm just standing there, dick out in the air, wild and young, pretending I'm pissing, just to try and chat with Hanyu.” he pauses to take a breath “He looks at me and, like, the dude is so hot in person, you wouldn't believe it, and he goes Are you going to piss or what? And I panic. 'Cause no piss is coming out, no sir. So I say Wanna be my friend?

Jungkook bursts out laughing, slapping his leg and coughing on some smoke.

“It's not over!” Taehyung giggles “He gives me this look of utter confusion and he says something like If you give me a good reason then yes. And at that point it's a matter of pride! Like, I'm all dicks out for Hanyu, so it's important to me! And I say Wuh-” Taehyung chuckles to himself “Well, you might wanna know that I can fit a whole pack of Oreos in my mouth.

“Oh my God.” Jungkook laughs, a hand over his mouth.

“And at that point it's a two cases scenario. Either he's incredibly, and rightly, impressed by my outstanding capacities, or he's gonna walk away.” Taehyung turns serious “He looks at me for what felt like ages. Our dicks are still out. No one is pissing. A dude opens the door, look at us, closes the door again.”

Jungkook is wheezing at this point, he blames the weed and beer.

“Finally, Yuzuru tilts his chin up and goes Have you ever tried fitting a full pack of Twinkies in your mouth? I respond I can't say I did, he says We have our plans sorted out for tonight.” Taehyung nods solemnly “So we went to his room, I almost died for lack of oxygen at the seventh Twinkie, then I fucked him hard enough that he felt it for days.”

Jungkook's smile disappears “Wait, you fucked Yuzuru Hanyu?”

Taehyung holds his gaze for a full minute before he cracks a smile “Nah, but I wish I did. He's got such good legs.”

“True.”

Taehyung shakes his head “Has anyone ever told you that you laugh like a 5 years old?”

“Kiss my ass.” Jungkook passes the joint to Taehyung “You got more stories?”

Taehyung takes a drag and nods “First senior competition, NHK Trophy. I'm, honest to God, so nervous, a bundle of messed up nerves, so on edge. Either way, I'm doing my warm up with all the other competitors when at some point, out of fucking nowhere, Thomas Verner literally skates against me.”

“Shit.”

“So he bumps into me pretty hard and, mind you, it was his fault 'cause I was going my way and following the flow, but I manage to not fall and I even keep him up so that he doesn't land against the boards. He looks at me and, like, I'm expecting an apology. Instead he goes Watch where you're going.”

Jungkook frowns, Taehyung just spoke with a weird pronounciation, all consonants hard as hell.

“What happened to your accent?”

“He's Czech, I'm trying to- I'm shit with accents. Anyways, I might have been 16 and terrified of everything, but if there's one thing my mom taught me is to never let a straight white man walk over me. So I look at him and go You should apologize to me, not the contrary. And he fucking scoffs, the piece of shit, and he says What, a child now wants to teach me how to skate?” Taehyung clicks his tongue “My mother's words echoed in my head. All I could think about was Do NOT let the white man do this to you. So you know what I did?”

“What?” Jungkook asks, amusement and anticipation painted on his face.

“Nothing.” Taehyung takes a drag of smoke “I was terrified and I almost shat my pants, so I apologized and skated away. But-” Taehyung smirks “I ended up with my first Senior Bronze and he ended up fifth.”

Jungkook smiles “Good job.”

Taehyung mutters a thank you, words a bit slurred, he takes a deep breath and lets it out in a sigh “I like the smell of air in winter, it's nice. I have a question.”

“Shoot.”

“Why did you start skating so late?” Taehyung tilts his head to the side, music is still blaring loud from the living room.

“Ah.” Jungkook licks his dry lips, wind a little unforgiving, but the warm buzzing of all the alcohol he swallowed keeps him comfortable “I was born in the South, you know. There ain't much snow in my town, let alone ice. And it was a small town, we barely had a McDonald there, let alone an Ice Rink. I used to do ballet and, let me tell you, if you do ballet in my town it's hard to make friends.”

“Judgy sons of bitches.” Taehyung mutters.

“Preach it.” Jungkook gulps down some more beer, the bottle is almost empty “Then, out of nowhere, they build an ice rink. It was kinda shitty, and the ice was never polished enough, but one day I went 'cause I was curious and-” Jungkook looks at the view from Jimin's balcony, London alive even if it's almost three in the morning “You remember your first time on the ice, yeah?”

“Yeah.” Taehyung smiles “Fuck, I remember.”

“It felt so fucking right.” Jungkook can't help but smile at the memory “It felt so good. It felt like I belonged, like I was ready to break all of my bones on that ice and still love it. So I just started skating there, learning by myself all the jumps, informing myself on the rules, I was in love. I fell in love that day. And I knew that I was so late, no figure skater starts skating when they turn twelve, but I loved it so much. One day a friend of mine posts a video on youtube of me skating on the routine of Takahashi Daisuke and it got- what, like 50 views? And ten of those were mine.” Taehyung snorts “But among those 50 views there was an athlete of the American Team, showed his coach the video, the coach comes to the rink and asks me if I wanna skate for real. And I said yes.” Jungkook gulps down the last drops of beer “So I trained with him for a while and, you know, I was quick. He used to say he's never seen someone learn so fast. So I went to the Juniors with him, I ended up fourth at the Junior Grand Prix, I was fifteen and, well, basically zero experience, so that was huge for me. Long story short, I trained my ass off, doubled the training of all the other guys in my team, and then I met Jimin. I was seventeen, he was already a huge skater, I owe him a lot. He taught me so much. Then Namjoon came along, saw me skating at training and told me to ditch that dude who was training me if I wanted to win a real gold. I said yes and-” Jungkook takes a theatrical pause “The rest is history.”

Taehyung hums, looking at him with a certain curiosity in his eyes “So, basically self taught, got where you are in record time?”

“Basically.”

“Two years.”

Jungkook frowns “What?”

“In two years you'll be better than me.” Taehyung sighs “Maybe even less if you keep this up.”

Jungkook doesn't say anything for a while. But there's something burning in his chest, he recognizes it as pride. Because Taehyung, Kim Taehyung who manages to still jump after his tibia was broken in three different spots after only one year, is acknowledging him. And fuck, it feels good.

“Can't wait to kick your ass.” Jungkook says, Taehyung snorts.

“Can't wait to consider you competition.”

Suddenly, Jimin appears on the balcony, his balance completely fucked up and a drunken grin on his lips “Hoseok is doing body shots!” he screams, even though they can hear him just fine “And Namjoon is the one drinking!”

Taehyung and Jungkook get up immediately, tripping over the blankets that pool at their feet, and run inside.

 

 

 

Jungkook wakes up with his eyes stinging, death in his mouth, a headache so bad he swears he's about to greet the Creator, and his limbs sore. Also, with something really heavy on him. He looks at his chest and finds a really naked Hoseok snoring over him.

“What the fuck?” he murmurs.

“He passed out after he drank three more glasses of the Cherry Triumph.”

Jungkook looks to his right and sees Taehyung standing there, looking like he went through Hell and back.

“Hey.” Jungkook looks around “Everyone's asleep?”

“It's not even eight in the morning.” Taehyung whispers “But I have to leave, gotta fly back to Seoul.”

“Mmmh.” Jungkook closes his eyes. He's so tired. He's sure he can fall asleep again “I'll see you at the Europeans? You're gonna come?”

“Yeah, Jimin would kill me if I don't.” Taehyung shrugs on his jacket and wraps a scarf around his neck “I guess I'll see you there.”

“Yeah.” Jungkook mumbles, already drifting back to sleep.

Then there's a soft pressure against his lips, a feeling he knows far too well and yet is entirely different. Taehyung kisses the way he skates, with passion and hunger. This kiss is the softest thing Jungkook ever felt, something similar to a feather caressing bare skin. Taehyung pulls back almost immediately.

“See you there, Jeon.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LOS ANGELES

 

The thing about L.A. is that it's way too hot. All the time. Sure, it's beautiful, it's hectic, all Jungkook needs to keep himself active, 'cause he always works better when there's frenzy all around him, but sometimes the heat is unbearable. That's also one of the main reasons he spends most of his time at the private Ice Rink, booking it whenever he can just for himself, training under Namjoon's eyes.

But today there's no training. No, sundays mean lounging on the sofa, watching terrible reality tv-shows or binge watching something on Netflix. And it's on that sunday that a package gets delivered to his flat. It is customary to receive magazines where he appears, whether it's for a photo shoot or an interview, so there they are. He ignores the one where he knows he appeared for a photo shoot 'cause it was a nightmare, the concept cringy as hell and he has absolutely no intention of seeing himself in a flower crown, no thank you. Tumblr can have fun with that.

What catches his eyes, though, is the sports magazine that he knows features the interviews Jimin, Taehyung and he took just after the Worlds Championship. They all had the interview taken on the same day and Jungkook is curious to see Jimin's and Taehyung's. He kind of remembers his own, but he still gives it a quick look.

On a column there's a photo of him mid Salchow, beautifully taken, then the interview begins.

 

“I meet Jungkook Jeon first and I am captivated by his young features.”

 

Oh, right, the interviewer was most definitely a cougar of some sorts.

 

“He wears his bronze medal with pride-”

 

Jungkook scoffs. He skips the introduction, reads the first question.

 

“Q: how do you feel knowing that the podium belonged to not only people who you seem to be in good terms with, but who are also Asians?

A: it's good. Both Jimin and Taehyung are incredible athletes, they deserve their spots there. The fact that we are all Koreans is a plus, it's good to see this happening. I guess it's good for young koreans or asians who want to follow this kind of path as well.

 

Jungkook hums. He did not phrase it like that. Hell no, he was way more straightforward with it but, well, he guesses it's a good thing they edited it a bit. The juice of his speech was this, after all. He decides to ignore his interview, maybe he'll read it later, on the next page is Taehyung. He presses his lips together and fuck it, he'll read Taehyung's for last. For no particular reason.

Jimin's photo is of his last spin, the shape of it beautiful and flawless.

 

“Q: It's your second time in a row winning Gold. And you broke the World Record that you set last year. How does it feel?

A: Mostly unreal. I didn't have a good experience with the short program, I lacked immensely. It felt good getting that back during the free (free program), I'm satisfied. (He chuckles) Well, obviously.

 

Jungkook reads the rest of the questions half mindedly, most of the answer Jimin gives are answers that are obvious just because the question is plain and over-asked. He frowns when he notices one of the answers Jimin gave is far longer than the others, so he starts reading that.

 

“Q: Let's talk about your coach.

A: (He smiles wide) Let's.

Q: You and your trainer, Yoongi Min, you are both fairly beloved by your fans. They say you are the, and I quote, “power couple of Figure Skating”. What I want to know is if that somehow changes the way he trains you and, most importantly, how he came to become your coach.

A: My favorite question. Well, in terms of training, our relationship doesn't change much. When I train he isn't my lover, he's my trainer, he will be as strict as it is expected from him. And about the power couple thing, we know about it, Yoongi doesn't really care, I find it cute. And we are both aware many people were surprised when I announced Yoongi as my new trainer. He's a former X Games champion, he's what they call a “Snow Fairy”, he's never really spent time on an ice rink, but that didn't matter to us.

Q: But how did it happen? He used to be a Snowboard champion, how did he become the trainer of a figure skater?

A: (He laughs) Well, he's seen me skate once. He's been friends with Kim Seokjin (Taehyung Kim's trainer) for a long time and Seokjin once came to see me and I was training. When I got out of the rink he approached me and told me that he wanted to work with me. He admitted immediately that he had no idea of how a figure skater has to be trained but that he would've figured it out. I asked him why, I was truly surprised, we had never met and he was a stranger. He said, oh it's kind of embarassing, he said that when he saw me skate he heard music in his head.

Q: Music in his head?

A: That I inspired him a new melody. He said he wanted to compose music inspired by me and for me, so that I could skate on it and perform with it. (He looks down at his lap) It was such a weird thing to say, but he was so sure of it, and stubborn. I asked him to let me hear the kind of music he would write for me and the next day he came back to the rink with a new song, the one my routine inspired. And when I heard it I knew I wanted to skate on that, so that was already enough for me. He became a great trainer, he already had experience with winter games, so he actually had a certain preparation and, for the choreographies, I've always made them myself. We work well together.

Q: Can we also know who made the first step?

A: No, that's a secret. (he points at himself)

 

 

“This is so fucking cheesy.” Jungkook chuckles, he finishes reading the rest of the interview, then he goes back to Taehyung's.

The picture is Taehyung doing his Biellman, he starts reading. The first question is about his ankle, Taehyung tells them there's nothing to worry about, just a bad sprain, although it did influence his performance quite a lot. Then he spots his name in the middle of the words and reads the question.

 

“Q: you, Jimin Park and Jungkook Jeon seem to be in good terms. Are you friends?

A: Ah, yes, me and Jimin have been friends for a long time. Jungkook, I met him at the last Four CCs (Four Continents Championship), we bonded pretty quickly.

 

Jungkook snorts.

 

“Q: In a previous interview they asked you if you thought of him as competition, your reply was “Not for now, no”. Has this opinion changed?

A: (he seems to think about it) Here's the thing, Jungkook is good and has potential. I have my own reasons to believe he still hasn't given us a performance where we can say “Ah, yes, he's at his peak, he's doing it”. To say that I consider him competition now, that would be a lie. I don't deny that he's good, he is, but- well, let's just say that I'm starting to consider the idea of considering him competition.

Q: Is it because you know you're better than him or-

A: (He shakes his head) The only reason I'm better than him is because I've been skating for longer. Far longer. It's about experience, truly, and maybe there is a clear difference in our style and, well, even class. That doesn't mean he can't improve, I know he will. So yes. I'm starting to consider the idea of considering him competition.

Q: And Jimin Park?

A: If there's someone who could end my career, that's Jimin.

 

 

The rest of the questions are the usual questions. What are his plans for the future, will he be seen at the next Olympics (the answer is no), what we can expect from his next performances and so on. Jungkook skips them, or reads them a little distractedly. He sets the magazine aside and sighs.

What does consider the idea of considering him competition even means?

He takes his phone, goes through his contacts, and stops when he finds Taehyung's number. His finger hovers over it, without pressing the screen. They've exhanged numbers back in Helsinki but not once did they call or texted. Yet, right now, Jungkook really wants to know what he means with those words. He wants to.

He puts the phone aside and unmutes the television, Gordon Ramsay screaming at a young chef that his filet is “SO RAW THAT IT'S ABOUT TO EAT THE POTATOES!”.

He spends the rest of the day like this, Taehyung's words won't leave him in peace, no matter how loud the volume of the tv is.

 

 

 

 

EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP, MOSCOW, 2018

 

 

 

 

If Helsinki was cold in April, Moscow in January is the Iceberg that sank the Titanic. Jungkook, in the short distance between airport and taxi fears for his life, not even the heavy coat, scarf, wool beanie and ear protectors he's wearing spare him from the daggering cold that hits his skin, the ground is almost covered in ice because of course Namjoon insisted on getting to Moscow with the earliest flight available. As soon as they're inside the taxi and give the driver the address of the hotel, Jungkook glares at his friend.

“Let's take an early flight, he said.” he hisses, tongue numb from how cold it is “It's gonna be fun, he said.”

“I didn't fucking say it was gonna be fun!” Namjoon retorts, hands tucked under his crossed arms “I said that it would have been better to go early so that we would've had more time to-”

“Whatever, I hate you.” Jungkook tucks his chin in his scarf and takes a long breath.

“Tourists, uh?” the driver suddenly says, english heavy with the hard russian accent.

“That obvious?” Namjoon is trying to be friendly but Jungkook knows him well enough to see that he's just pretending to give a damn about this conversation.

“Weird time for a vacation.” the man says.

“Ah, not a vacation, we're here for the Europeans.” Namjoon replies.

“Oh! Fans?”

“You could say that.”

The driver nods to himself “Pljuščenko will win.”

Jungkook scoffs “Yeah, right.”

Namjoon elbows him in the ribs and chuckles nervously, the driver stops talking for the rest of the ride but eyes him narrowly from the rearview mirror.

 

 

When Jungkook leaves his hotel room to meet Namjoon down at the lobby so that they can go together to the rink to see Jimin training, Jungkook is half asleep, half terrified of stepping outside again. Still, he has no choice, because Jimin can and will punch him in the face if he doesn't show up at the rink.

During the ride to the rink, Namjoon keeps talking about trying to grasp what he can from Jimin's performances so that he can improve his own routines for the next championships. All Jungkook knows is that he's jetlagged, that his head hurts and that he has essays to hand in when he goes back to Los Angeles. So he only half listens to Namjoon's never ending rambling, his head leaning on the car window of the taxi, taking in the snowy city.

“Namjoon.”

Namjoon sighs, clearly unhappy that he's been interrupted “What?”

“Did you and Seokjin fuck at Worlds?”

A silence cues. There's a russian song playing from the radio, the driver humming to it.

“Yeah.” Namjoon finally says, Jungkook nods.

“You guys are back together or-?”

“I don't think Jin and I have ever been together to begin with.” Namjoon looks down at his lap “Told you, we fucked after games 'cause we're both competitive assholes. There was nothing more.”

Jungkook sends him a quick look “But you wanted more.”

Namjoon snorts “Of course I wanted more, have you seen him? He's a fucking masterpiece and, you know, when he's in a good mood he's actually funny. He laughs at his own shitty jokes, it was endearing and all that shit.”

“Then why did it end?”

“Ah, that-” Namjoon grimaces, shifting in his seat a little “He was an asshole, I was an asshole too. It was about pride and all that stuff, you know, the sake of the teams, that maybe we were confusing lust and anger with passion and so on. He's the one who called it off.” Namjoon looks at him with a frown “Why are you asking?”

Jungkook looks out of the window, he can see the rink now, the car starts pulling in the parking lot “I'm fucking Taehyung.”

The car stops, Jungkook opens the door and steps outside, he starts walking to the rink and, soon enough, Namjoon has caught up to him.

“You're fucking Kim Taehyung?!” Namjoon almost screams “Your rival Kim Taehyung?!”

Jungkook rolls his eyes and speeds up “He's not only my rival, you know? We're friends, I guess.”

“No, friends don't fuck!”

“Then what about you and-”

“Don't!” Namjoon points a finger at him “We have never been friends, that's the point!”

“Look.” Jungkook halts and Namjoon stops walking as well, fixing him with a pointed glare “Don't worry, okay? We're not lovers or anything like that, we're just- sometimes after competitions we fuck. That's it.”

Namjoon closes his eyes, face heavy with what looks almost like exhaustion. He rubs the bridge of his nose, Jungkook feels like half of his ass is freezing as they stand outside.

“That's what worries me.” Namjoon finally says “It would be better if there were feelings involved, but no, it's just sex. And trust me kid, sex ruins shit when even that is competitive.”

“We'll be okay, Joon.” Jungkook says, trying to smile as cheerfully as possible “Seriously, we're big boys, we know how to handle this shit. I just thought you should've known.” a few moments pass before Namjoon gives him a tired sigh “Great, can we go inside now?, I'm fucking freezing.”

Namjoon nods and puts his arm around Jungkook's shoulders as they walk in the rink. He knows Jimin rented the whole place for three days, so that he could train in peace, the girl at the welcoming desk asks for their names and, once she checks if they're allowed inside, she smiles and points them to the right staircase.

Following her directions, Jungkook and Namjoon find themselves on top of the bleachers, at the last row, the rink empty and filled with loud music. He expects it to be one of Yoongi's compositions, but it's some pop song in, Jungkook guesses, Korean. As they go down to the bottom level Jungkook sees that Jimin is not skating, just chatting with Yoongi with their noses basically brushing, Yoongi grinning at him amusedly.

“Not training?” Jungkook shouts to be heard over the song, Jimin spins around when he hears his voice and smiles at him wide.

“I was, but an idiot decided to interrupt me.” Jimin says, pointing at the center of the rink.

Taehyung is there, not to anyone's surprise, dancing to the song, a choreography with sharp moves, but he's wearing his blades.

Jungkook spots Jin sitting on a bench, staring at Taehyung with a bored look, Hoseok sits beside him and is mimicking the dance moves.

The moment Jungkook gets to the boards, Taehyung screams “RING DING DONG RING DING DONG!”

“What the fuck is he doing?”

“It's a song by some dudes called SHINee.” Jimin replies “He said one of them is a fan of him. A Minho dude or something.”

Taehyung suddenly starts skating fast before he basically launches himself forward, landing not so gracefully on his belly and sliding on the ice with a happy smile.

“He looks like he's having fun.” Namjoon says.

“Too much fun.” Jin adds sourly.

“Grab a pair of skates and forcibly remove him from my rink.” Jimin says, pointing at a pair of spare blades laying under the bench where Jin is sitting “He won't let me get close to him and I have to train.”

Jungkook sighs but still takes off his heavy coat and scarf, he takes off his shoes and quickly puts on the ice skates, tying the laces quickly, he takes off the protectors and gets on the ice, making his way to Taehyung, who is still pushing himself forward with his arms so that he can slide over the cold surface, laughing breathlessly. Jungkook quickly catches up to him and parts his legs so that he has a foot on each side of Taehyung's hips, then he leans down and circles his arms under the skater's stomach, pulling him up with a grunt.

Taehyung yelps and flails around “I WILL NOT BE STOPPED, JIMIN!”

“Not Jimin.”

Taehyung tilts his head so that he can look at him “Oh, Jeon.”

“Hi.”

“I WILL NOT BE STOPPED!”

“I have been told to forcibly remove you from the rink.”

Taehyung gasps, horrified, and starts twisting in Jungkook's arms, who still keeps him up, Taehyung has his knees close to his chest, clearly thinking that like this he'll be heavier and harder to carry around, but Jungkook is just skating back to the boards.

“This is insane! I was almost at the best part!”

“Tragic.”

“Jimin, I beg you, one last song!”

“No!” Jimin replies, already skating to the center of the rink as Yoongi goes to the speakers so he can unplug Taehyung's phone.

“At least a song by EXO!”

“You can kiss my exass.”

Taehyung scoffs “He thinks he's funny.”

“He is kinda funny.” Jungkook stops right before the little exit that takes them out of the rink “Off you go.”

Taehyung crosses his arms “No.”

“I'll drop your ass on the ice.”

“You wouldn't.”

Jungkook starts letting go of Taehyung but the boy immediately grips on his arms, putting his legs down on the floor “I get it, you fucking dictator!”

Jungkook grins as Taehyung steps out of the rink, still mumbling angrily about the lack of freedom this rink offers.

 

 

“He added a quad for the free.”

Jungkook and Taehyung are sitting in one of the upper rows, looking at Jimin practice his short program, Yoongi's song playing loud in the rink.

“Seriously?” Jungkook blows on his hot chocolate, Taehyung nods and takes a gulp of his own drink.

“Yeah, a Loop in the second half.” Taehyung licks some chocolate off his bottom lip “I mean, we all know he's gonna win.”

“Yeah. What are we even doing here?”

Taehyung chuckles “Enjoying the weather.”

“I fucking hate Moscow. Like, I get it, you wanna hold this year's Europeans, fine, but in January?” Jungkook shakes his head “That's attempted murder.”

Taehyung leans forward a bit, face closer to Jungkook's than he expected “I have a theory.” he whispers.

“Shoot.”

“Putin wants all the skaters dead because he thinks we're Gay Propaganda.”

Jungkook snorts “It's funny 'cause it's true.”

“He's trying to kill us with hypothermia.” Taehyung suddenly smiles “I learned that word yesterday.”

“What, hypothermia?”

“Yeah. English is hard, man.”

“Korean is hard.”

“I'm hard.”

Jungkook squints his eyes “No, you aren't.”

“I might be later.”

“The mysteries of the world.”

“With this cold I know for sure one thing that is hard.” he takes a long pause “My nipples.”

Jungkook almost chokes on his chocolate when he laughs “I almost choked to death.”

“That's Putin's fault.”

“Also, those are two things that are hard.”

“I suddenly had a revelation about nipples this morning in the shower.”

Jungkook grins “Please, do explain.”

“Okay, I was masturbating-”

“Jesus Christ.”

“No, I wasn't thinking about him. Anyways, you know, just shaking hands with my dick when suddenly I think Oh, wait, there are more nipples in the world than people.

Jungkook lets the words sink in “Oh my God, you're right.”

“There are people with three nipples! Three, Jungkook!” Taehyung shakes his head “Nipples will take over the world. Rule us all. They will lactate on everything we love.”

“And at that point, it's gonna be too late.” Jungkook nods his head, pensive “We thought global warming would kill us... no one expected the nipples.”

Taehyung holds up his plastic cup of hot chocolate “To the nipple apocalypse, my comrade.”

Jungkook taps his cup with Taehyung's and they both take a long gulp, Jimin in the meantime lands a Salchow, Taehyung giggles.

“What?”

“You're the only one who goes along with my antics.” Taehyung shrugs “I like it.”

“I like your antics. You're funny.”

“I know, I'm a delight.”

Jungkook presses his lips together because Taehyung may be many things but delightful? Not so much. He doesn't say it in a mean way, but Taehyung is annoying most of the time, arrogance at it's finest is embed in his blood, he acts like a brat whenever he can. So no, not a delight. Doesn't mean he's not good company.

“Tae!” Hoseok suddenly calls as he climbs up the bleachers to them “I'm going back to the hotel, wanna come? You said you wanted to nap.”

“I did say that.” Taehyung looks at Jungkook for a moment “Maybe I can catch up later or-”

“If you're tired you shuld go.” Jungkook cuts him off, he looks back at the rink “Tomorrow they start early and Jimin is one of the last to perform, you're gonna need the sleep.”

Hell, Jungkook needs to sleep.

“Oh.” Taehyung stands up “I'll go then.”

Jungkook looks at him and nods “See you tomorrow guys.”

“You too, get some sleep.” Hoseok winks at him and starts climbing back up to the exit, Taehyung follows him. He sends Jungkook a last grin and waves at him before he disappears behind the door.

Jungkook focuses again on Jimin, the cheap hot chocolate they got from the vending machine clings to the roof of his mouth, and Jungkook can't help but think of how fucking disappointed Taehyung looked when he told him to leave.

 

 

 

Jimin brings the short program of the Worlds Championship and, this time, he nails it. He lands all of his jumps wonderfully, every rotation perfect, no flaws can be found. It feels like a revenge after the flop that this program was back at Worlds, Jungkook is satisfied.

Taehyung, whos's sitting beside him at the bleachers reserved for the athletes, is munching on some candies “I'm not even surprised.”

“Same.” Hoseok says, mindlessly scrolling his timeline on twitter “We might wanna work on your jumps too, otherwise you'll never get a gold again.”

Taehyung scoffs “You're not my coach.”

“But he's right.” Jin says “And I'm your trainer so, trust me, we'll work on those damn jumps.”

Taehyung throws a gummy bear at him and Jin starts yelling at him in Korean, moving his arms widly, Hoseok cracking up in the corner.

 

 

Once every athlete has done their performance, Taehyung is the one who suggests him to take a walk.

“Wanna act like a tourist, that's what I want.” he says “It'll be fun.”

Jungkook agrees.

 

It's not fun.

“A storm!” Taehyung shouts as they walk back to the hotel, snow hitting them hard on the face “A goddamn snow storm!”

The wind is so strong that walking is tiring, because of course the wind is not even in their favor. Jungkook hides his face under the scarf, eyes almost shut close because of the snow and harsh dry wind, making them sting and well up with tears.

“Let's act like tourists, Jungkook!” he shouts, not because he's actually angry, just because the wind roars around them and he's not sure Taehyung can hear him “It's gonna be fun, Jungkook!”

“You agreed! Don't blame this on me you-” Taehyung can't finish the sentence. A strong blast of wind almost pushes him back, Taehyung stumbles and trips, falling on his butt in the snow.

“Shit, are you okay?!” Jungkook crouches next to him.

Taehyung stares at nothing for a few moments then bursts out laughing, eyes forming little crescents with crinkles on the side. His hair is damp with snow, the pink beanie covered in it, cheeks flushed because of the cold and nose red. And his laugh, that's something Jungkook always liked, because it's just so Taehyung. It's deep and loud and maybe even a little childish, but it suits him, it's perfect for him.

And, weirdly enough, despite being bad at a lot of things, Jungkook is good with feelings. Which is why, if anyone asks him in the future, he'll be able to pinpoint the exact moment he fell in love with Taehyung. It was in Moscow, with a snow storm, when Taehyung fell hard on the snowy ground and looked like a mess. That's when he falls in love. And, god, does he fall hard. There's no loud thumping of his heart, no breath getting stuck in his throat, but suddenly he can't hear the wind roaring in his ears but just the sound of Taehyung's laughter.

He's not surprised. How can he be? He should've known, really.

“Help a brother out?” Taehyung says, pulling Jungkook out of his thoughts, he grabs Taehyung's arms and helps him up. They start walking again but this time Jungkook keeps him a bit closer, with an arm around his waist.

“So that you don't fall.” he tells him.

It's a lie.

 

 

 

In the elevator, Taehyung is busy getting the snow off his beanie “I need seven showers, I'm so cold.”

“How are the nipples doing?” Jungkook asks, shrugging snow off his coat.

“Harder than a rock.”

Jungkook chuckles and the elevator stops, the doors open and they're on the level where Jungkook's room is.

“Your room is here, too?”

“Nah, Hoseok's is.” Taehyung says as he steps out of the elevator “I'll probably crash at his for a while, Jin's got the keys for my room.”

“Why don't you ever have your own keys?”

“I lose them all the time.” Taehyung replies “Once, we were in Thailand, and I had the keys but I couldn't find them and let me tell you, Jin doesn't look pretty when he gets mad.”

They reach Jungkook's room, he gets the keycard from the pocket of his coat and opens the door.

“I guess I'll see you tomorrow.” he says, Taehyung nods.

“Sure.” he pauses “This was fun.”

Jungkook frowns “We almost actually died of hypothermia.”

“Putin, man, he really knows his stuff.”

“That storm did look unnatural.” Jungkook leans on the wall with his shoulder, door still open “You think he has anything to do with it?”

“Maybe he has some sort of machine that lets him start storms out of nowhere.” Taehyung gets a step closer “Like, forget about nuke, he'll just cover everyone in snow.”

“Start the second Ice Age.”

“Jungkook, what if he has three nipples?”

Jungkook widens his eyes in fake terror “Jesus Christ, he's one of the nipples people.”

“He'll lactate on us while he covers us in snow at the same time.” Taehyung gasps and covers his mouth with his gloved hand “We can't stay here one more minute. We need to fly to some place recluded and try to stay out of this impending war. I'm too pretty for war.”

“Where do you suggest we go?”

Taehyung thinks about it for a second, his cheeks are still flushed pink, Jungkook wants to kiss them. Yes, he knows, it's really an embarassing thought.

“Amsterdam.” Taehyung nods to himself “We'll just eat cheese and smoke weed whilst people and nipples destroy each other.”

“We could start a flower shop there, they got tulips right?”

Taehyung doesn't answer him, just stares at him with a smile on his lips. Jungkook only now realizes that, somehow, they managed to get way closer than before, maybe even too close, Taehyung's breathing breaks on his mouth and he can feel his warmth. Kissing him would be easy. Kissing him would be so easy, and nice, and tempting as hell.

Taehyung blinks and takes a step back “I should- Hoseok's waiting for me.”

He isn't.

“Yeah, right.” Jungkook takes a step back as well “I'll see you tomorrow.”

“Yeah.” Taehyung gives him a tight smile and waves at him “Tomorrow.”

Then he walks away, Jungkook gets in his room and closes the door.

He stands in the middle of the room, staring at his luggage, feet glued to the ground.

Jimin told him, hasn't he? That Taehyung doesn't really do relationships. That Hoseok and Taehyung have been fucking around since forever, so what is the point in being so disappointed? He's the one who caught feelings, not Taehyung, he can't even be mad at him for doing his own things. It's not even about anger, really, it's just that- well, it hurts. Of course it does, it still takes him by surprise. Jungkook is good at feelings, he is. He should've known better than fall for Taehyung, he guesses it was a long time coming. You fall in love with someone like Taehyung, you're falling in love with a firework. It's there, beautiful to see, just for a few moments, then another one comes and it's never as incredible as the first one.

There's two knocks on the door, Jungkook frowns but still walks to it. If it's Namjoon he's gonna kick his ass.

He opens the door and there's a flash of red before Taehyung is kissing him, hands clutching at the fabric of his coat, Jungkook closes his eyes and just welcomes it. Taehyung kicks the door close and kisses him harder, that's when Jungkook pulls away, Taehyung almost chases his lips before he frowns at him.

“Why-”
“What about Hoseok?” Jungkook asks him, there's no real bite in his voice “He's waiting, right?”

Taehyung's frown deepens for a moment, then he understands “Jimin told you.”

“Yeah, he told me.”

“I-” Taehyung swallows “Hoseok and I haven't fucked in a while.”

“A while.”

“A long while.”

Jungkook hums “Since when?” Taehyung doesn't answer him “Maybe since Worlds?”

“Since Worlds, yeah.” Taehyung lets out a breath Jungkook didn't know he was holding “Since then.”

“Okay.”

“Okay?”

“Yeah.” Jungkook grabs Taehyung's coat and pulls him a bit closer “Okay.”

He knows Taehyung is, most likely, not in love with him. He thinks about it as they kiss, a bit slower than usual, a little more tenderly, he thinks about it. That maybe Taehyung might never love him, because feelings sometimes work like that. But, still, Jungkook sees a string of hope. Taehyung told him he hasn't been with Hoseok since Worlds and, in a way, he knows he's telling the truth, Taehyung doesn't lie. Taehyung manages to get rid of his coat, Jungkook is working on his own, discarding it on the floor as they messily make their way to the bed, still with too many clothes on, still trying to keep the kiss going, until Taehyung starts giggling on his lips.

“You literally spat in my mouth.” Jungkook groans.

“Why do we always have so many fucking clothes?!” Taehyung exclaims, still laughing, he takes off his scarf and then shrugs off the wool pullover “I swear to god, whenever we fuck we have around seven layers of clothing.”

“Now that you mention it, it's weird.” Jungkook says, taking off his sweatshirt, beanie and scarf “You think it's Putin?”

“He controls the weather and nipples, I wouldn't be surprised-” he pecks Jungkook's lips as he starts taking off his shirt “If he could control people's minds as they're about to have sex. Especially if it's two dudes.”

Jungkook hums, he kicks off his boots and leans down to get rid of the socks as well “You know what?”

“What?” Taehyung is free of of his boots and pants as well.

“Let's stop talking about Putin.”

“That sounds like a smart idea.”

“Are you wearing fuzzy socks?”

“They're cute.” Taehyung smirks “Also, I can do this.”

He bends down and grabs the hems of the blue socks then he starts pulling them up, the folded hems straightening and Jungkook's eyes widen when Taehyung manages to get the socks to the middle of his thighs.

“How the fuck did you manage to wear boots with those?” he asks, a little in awe, a lot intrigued.

“I'm a man of many wonders.” Taehyung looks up at him “Want me to take them off or keep them like this?”

Jungkook sighs “Keep them.”

“I fucking knew it.” Taehyung raises the other sock too so that he covers his skin up to his thigh “Next time I'll actually wear stockings.”

“You could wear those fishnets.” Jungkook says, turning around to get the lube and condoms from his luggage.

“Shit, I could.” Taehyung says “I will.”

Jungkook grins, he hears some rustling and he guesses Taehyung's on the bed now, so he makes a quick work of opening his luggage and getting what he needs, once he does he turns around and his heart almost stops in his chest.

Taehyung is laying on the bed, legs parted, a hand stroking lazily his dick, teeth nibbling on his bottom lip, and those damn socks look too good on his legs.

“Are you trying to give me a heart attack?” Jungkook asks, getting on the matress and putting the lube and condom aside.

“You're so easy to fluster.” Taehyung says, voice a little unsteady as his hand keeps working “I like it, though.”

“Of course you do.” Jungkook puts himself between Taehyung's legs and lets his fingertips graze the inside of the boy's thighs, a soft gasp leaving Taehyung's lips “You're sensitive today.”

“It's the cold.” Taehyung gulps “My skin's sensitive as fuck to cold.”

Jungkook has time to think that that's another thing he has to add to the list of Endearing qualities about Taehyung before he leans down and flicks his tongue over Taehyung's nipple.

The boy beneath him squirms a little, soft breaths leaving his mouth.

“You weren't lying about them being hard.”

“I am sensitive to cold you goddamn smartass.”

Jungkook looks up at him “Does that mean they're always hard when you're performing?”

“Maybe.” Taehyung replies after a pause, Jungkook snorts “Shut up.”

Jungkook latches his lips around the hardened nub again, sucking and flicking his tongue over it, Taehyung letting out small noises that Jungkook has never heard before from him and decides he loves them. He swats Taehyung's hand away from his erection and takes his cock in his hand, stroking him slowly as he starts nibbling lightly on Taehyung's nipple, the red haired's hips faltering and his dick twitching in his fist.

“God, I missed you.” Taehyung whispers, Jungkook stops his ministrations and looks at him.

“Really?”

“So fucking much.” Taehyung grins “Missed your hands a lot. Missed that pretty face of yours, too.”

Jungkook presses his lips together and averts his eyes “Shut up.”

“Aww, you're blushing.” Taehyung giggles delighted “That's fucking cute, jagi.”

Oh. Oh, he forgot about the korean. Shit, why does he like it so much?

“What does jagi mean?”

“Something like sweetheart?” Taehyung replies “It's like a cute endearing nickname, like love or darling.”

“I like it.”

“You know what I like?”

“What?”

“Your cock, so you might wanna keep this show going.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes but still gets the bottle of lube, squeezing some of his fingers and rubbing them together, trying to warm the substance up “I wonder when you'll stop acting like a brat even when we have sex.”

“Never, you like it.”

“I really don't.”

“Tell that to your dick.” Taehyung points with his foot at the tent in Jungkook's boxers “I ain't playing games, jagi.”

“Okay, fine.”

Jungkook gets back between Taehyung's legs and starts circling Taehyung's rim with the pad of his finger, a hand caressing the smooth skin of his thigh, snaking under the soft stockings, then he slowly starts inserting his finger, Taehyung tensing and holding his breath.

“You good, yeah?”

“Good.”

“You're really tight.”

Taehyung grins “It's been a while.”

For some reason, Jungkook adores the sound of those words. It has been a while. The last time he saw Taehyung was in october. And it's been even longer since Worlds Championships. So, yeah, it's been a while.

He adds another finger, Taehyung's eyes fluttering close for a moment, his body is starting to flush in pink, all golden skin and taut muscles.

“I missed you as well.” Jungkook admits, Taehyung looks at him “A lot.”

“I know.” Taehyung pushes his hips down on Jungkook's fingers “Trust me, I do.”

Of course he does. Jungkook guesses he's not exactly that good at hiding his feelings, and that goes for everything. He's an open book when it comes to that, he's always been easy to read, he never tried to hide when he was angry, or offended, or fond of someone. But god, does he hope he's doing a better job at hiding his love this time.

Taehyung mutters a curse when Jungkook thrusts his fingers deeper, parting his legs more, Jungkook keeps up a faster pace, scissoring his fingers until Taehyung is gasping for more.

“These seriously look ridiculous.” Jungkook mutters, eyeing the socks “Why do I even like them?”

“Fuck, I don't know, focus.” Taehyung arches his back a little, trying to get a better angle “Add another, come on.”

Jungkook does, finding little resistance, Taehyung relaxing and keening at the touch “Is it because they're fuzzy?”

“Oh my god, Jeon, shut up.”

“Oh how the tables have turned.” Jungkook drags his fingers along Taehyung's walls, hole tightening “I guess I just find them cute.”

Fuck, I'm ready. I'm ready, come on.”

“Is it again the cold's fault if you're this needy today?”

Taehyung guffaws, wincing a little when Jungkook slips out his fingers “Nah, I'm just really horny.”

Jungkook snorts and gets rid of his boxers quickly, he rips the condom's package open and slides it on his length, hissing at the sudden friction, then he lubes himself up “How do you want this?”

“Like this.”

Jungkook sends him a look “Seriously? Like this?”

“I'm really comfortable.” Taehyung smiles “So yes, like this.”

Jungkook lines with Taehyung's hole, he grips Taehyung's hips and, slowly, he slides inside, feeling Taehyung's hole clenching around him, Taehyung tensing and taking a deep breath.

“Kiss me?”

Jungkook's eyes widen a little, tight heat making him dizzy “Shit, Tae, what's up with you today?”

Taehyung doesn't reply immediately, just wets his lips and stares at him, eyes darting over his face “Just- I just want to.”

Jungkook, obviously, complies. Maybe, this time, it feels a little different. Maybe it's just his mind playing games, maybe it's just because he's in love, he doesn't know, but god does it feel different. It's slow, and Taehyung cradles his face in his hands, long fingers touching his skin like it's something holy, his hips push back on Jungkook's cock and something akin to a plead leaves Taehyung's lips when he starts fucking in deliberately slow. Jungkook wants to feel this, wants to know what it's like to have Taehyung when there's no competitiveness, no trace of adrenaline that still lingers after a championship, no need to get it out of their system. He wants to know what it feels like having Taehyung just because they want to. And it feels so unbearably good Jungkook might get addicted. Taehyung keeps kissing him even when he can't keep his moans quiet, biting on his lip after a particularly good thrust, soon he's fucking back on Jungkook's cock, meeting his thrusts, trying to force him to go faster, but Jungkook keeps the drag of his hips slow, Taehyung tight around him, body shuddering.

Fuck.” Taehyung arches beneath him, legs tight around Jungkook's waist “Fuck, like that jagi.”

Jungkook groans, burying his face in the crook of Taehyung's neck, thrusting inside hard but pulling out slowly, Taehyung moans.

“I fucking love it when you speak korean.” Jungkook says “Don't jugdge me.”

“Yeah?” Taehyung smirks, his fingers carding through Jungkook's hair “Want me to speak in korean when you fuck me?”

“Fuck, I do.”

Taehyung chokes on a moan when Jungkook starts stroking his cock, pushing in the tight fist as Jungkook keeps his thrusts slow.

Gae, soseu yangmal obeun daweji.

Jungkook shudders “Shit, why is that so hot?”

In between thrusts, Taehyung snorts and Jungkook feels his blood run cold. He stops moving altogether, Taehyung fucking whining and punching him in the chest.

“No, why did you stop you-”

“You said some weird shit, didn't you?” Jungkook hisses “What did you say in korean?”

Taehyung presses his lips together, trying really hard not to laugh, that's so obvious.

“Taehyung.”

“I-” Taehyung chuckles “I don't know, some weird shit about dogs and socks and ovens?”

“You fucking- I almost came because of that!”

“That was actually really funny.”

“I hate you.”

“No, don't hate me, fuck me instead.” Taehyung leaves a short peck on his lips “Please, I'm gonna lose my mind down here.”

“You seriously don't deserve it.”

“I promise I won't do it again.” Taehyung smiles at him, looking like something out of a miracle “Please, jagi, come on.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes “Fine.”

“Just, this time, you might wanna fuck me for real.”

“Didn't know I was pretending before.”

“You know what I mean.”

“Okay, whatever.” Jungkook straightens up, standing on his knees and, suddenly, he fucks inside Taehyung's hole in a hard thrust.

Taehyung cries out and Jungkook keeps that rythm, fucking hard and fast, the sound of skin slapping together mixing with Taehyung's ragged breathing and choked moans, voice going deeper, Jungkook moans when he feels Taehyung clenching around him.

He manages to grab Taehyung's leg and he pulls it up on his shoulder, he pulls down the stocking and bites the soft flesh of his thigh, Taehyung whimpering, his dick twitches, leaking precum on his stomach.

“Fuck.” Jungkook swallows “You're fucking beautiful.”

Taehyung laughs breathlessly, eyes shut close “God, shut up.”

“You are.” Jungkook leaves a kiss over the bite mark “You're gorgeus.”

Taehyung opens his eyes, a little glazes over “Yeah?”

“You know you are.”

“Maybe I- I like hearing you say it.”

Jungkook hates him for a moment. Just for a moment. It's his fault, not Taehyung's, he can blame only himself. It's not Taehyung's fault if he's in love, not Taehyung's fault if he's so goddamn beautiful.

Jungkook takes Taehyung's cock in his hand again, stroking him hard and fast, timing the movements of his hand with each thrust, relishing in the sounds Taehyung makes.

“You're so beautiful.” Jungkook whispers and yet, it feels like he's screaming those words “I think you're the most beautiful person I've ever seen.”

There's something that flashes in Taehyung's eyes, for a moment Jungkook fears Taehyung has figured it all out. Instead, Taehyung just fucks back on his cock, closing his eyes and moaning loud.

“Gonna come.” Taehyung grabs the pillow under his head “Jagi, I'm coming.”

Jungkook fucks inside Taehyung's heat faster, feeling his own release pooling in his stomach, hips faltering and movements becoming frantic.

Taehyung murmurs something in korean, tightens around him, body tautening then he comes with a drawn moan, spilling white on his chest and stomach, Jungkook fucks him through it, chasing his own orgasm almost desperately.

“Come on, Jeon.” Taehyung moans, breathless and with a shaky voice “Come on, show hyung what a good boy you are.”

Jungkook is sure he calls Taehyung's name when he spills in the condom, whole body freezing as he buries himself deep in Taehyung, the older boy combing his damp hair and whispering sweet nothings in the air.

Jungkook takes a deep breath, muscles still twitching when he pulls out. He takes off the condom, ties it, and throws it behind him on the floor.

“That's so gross.” Taehyung whispers, Jungkook just drops next to him on the bed.

“Don't give a shit.”

They stay like that for a moment, sweat drying on their skin until Taehyung rolls over and tucks his face in the crook of Jungkook's neck, an arm slung over his stomach “I'm so comfy.”

“You always manage to get comfy.”

“Can't wait for when we go for round two.”

“You're up for it?”

“Give me a moment and I'm all new. Might want you to fuck me in the shower.”

“That's dangerous as fuck.”

“Whatever.”

“And water makes everything dry.”

“Then you can just bounce on my dick, I seem to remember you being really good at that.”

Jungkook hums “Maybe we can do that.”

Taehyung looks up at him with a smirk “You know what else I want?”

“What?”

“Pizza.”

Jungkook sighs “I'll call room service.”

Taehyung claps his hands happily, rolling exctidely on the bed as Jungkook gets off the matress, unable to wipe the smile off his face.

 

 

 

It's evening when Taehyung finally gets dressed again, borrowing another of Jungkook's white shirts, fuzzy socks pulled down to his ankles again.

Jungkook is almost falling asleep in the bed, comforter up to his chin and Taehyung's fingers massaging his scalp.

“How's it going with college?” Taehyung asks and Jungkook lets out a pained groan.

“Don't remind me, I have fucking essays to write.” he says “But it's fine, it's going good.”

“And training?”

“Working on a new routine for the next Four CCs.”

“Spoilers?”

“I'm adding a quad if I manage to land it during practice.”

Taehyung hums and lays down as well, breathing slowly, a relaxed smile on his face.

“Tae?”

“Mmmh?”

“I read the interview.”

“Oh, the one from Worlds?”

“Yeah. Can I ask you something?”

“Sure.”

“You said you're starting to consider the idea of considering me competition.”

“I did say that.”

“Why?”

Taehyung frowns “What do you mean why?”

“I mean, what changed?”

“Why don't you tell me?”

“It ain't me who gave the interview.”

“Come on, Jeon.” Taehyung rolls on his side, he puts his chin on the palm of his hand with a teasing grin “You've seen me skate, tell me why you think I always win against you and why I'm only starting now to consider considering you competition.”

Jungkook doesn't reply to him immediately, he pretends to think about it when, in reality, he's admiring the complicate beauty of Taehyung's face for as long as he will be allowed to.

“I think there are two reasons as to why I keep losing.”

Taehyung hums, arching an eyebrow, clearly inviting him to keep spaking.

“The first one is that you're not afraid of the landing.” Jungkook moves his index finger over Taehyung's collarbones “Everyone is afraid of jumps because there's the landing, but you aren't. You don't even think about your landings when you jump.”

“Yeah, well.” Taehyung manages a tight smile “Last time I jumped and was scared of landing I broke my ankle in three different parts of the same bone, so-”

“Ah.”

“Yeah. No more fear for me.” Taehyung says, something gentle in his eyes as he moves a strand of hair away from Jungkook's eyes “What about the second one?”

“I don't know.” Jungkook admits “I thought I knew but it's something I can't pinpoint. At first I thought it was all about skills, you know? Higher jumps, stronger sequences, but it's not that.”

Taehyung nods, he tilts his head to the side “Want me to tell you what's the second reason?”

Jungkook rolls his eyes at the clear teasing lingering in Taehyung's voice, bu he nods his head anyways. Taehyung rolls off the matress with a groan and starts looking for his coat, he finds it on the floor and he picks a pack of cigarettes out of a pocket. As he lights up a cigarette he opens the window, cold wind immediately making it's way in the room, Taehyung takes a drag of smoke.

“Shit, Taehyung, it's fucking cold.” Jungkook whines, pulling the heavy comforter up to his nose and shivering. The snow storm has stopped by now, but the hair still smells of snow and ice.

“The second reason is that you don't have a concept.” Taehyung says, blowing a cloud of smoke, in the dim lights of the room it looks almost purple, disappearing in the tight opening of the window “You skate without a plot, without a theme or a story. You have an aesthetic going in your routines, vibes even, but no story and the judges see that, the audience sees that. Jimin? He's got Yoongi's music to give him a story. I take care of my own concepts and Hoseok makes a choreography for them. That's why you're always beneath me with the presentation's scores.” Taehyung lets ash fall out of the window, grinning at him “Give yourself a real concept for the next routine and you might get your gold even if I'm competing against you. And that answers your question about me considering you competition as well.” Taehyung takes another long drag “The moment you get a concept going it's the moment I might be in trouble.”

Taehyung stubbs the cigarette against the window glass then throws it outside, shutting the window close with a shiver “You're right, too fucking cold.”

Jungkook sighs and raises the blankets, Taehyung quickly getting in bed and snuggling to Jungkook with a content smile. As soon as the comforter is covering him up to his chin, Taehyung snakes his arms around Jungkook's waist, nuzzling his shoulder and already throwing a leg over Jungkook's.

“Why do I always end up as a pillow?” he asks, eliciting a giggle from Taehyung.

“You're so comfortable, I love it. I sleep so good with you.”

Jungkook feels his lips curling up in a smile, something warm in his chest putting him at ease. It's fine if Taehyung isn't in lov with him, maybe one day he'll be. And even if that's never going to happen, he still gets to have this moments. He decides to treasure them for as long as they last.

“I sleep even better if the person hugs me back.”

“Goddammit, you're so high maintanance.” Jungkook still rolls over so that he can circle his arms around Taehyung's hips, forehead against his chest and legs slotting together. Taehyung rests his chin on top of his head, soft caresses on his neck, he's humming lowly to a tune Jungkook can't recognize.

“Let's go somewhere tomorrow.” Taehyung says, Jungkook feels like falling asleep already.

“Okay.”

“Where should we go?”

“I don't care. You choose.”

“Putin's house?”

Jungkook snickers “Let's count his nipples, we need evidence.”

“Do you really don't care where we go?”

“I don't, wherever it's fine.”

Taehyung mutters an okay before he starts singing in a low voice a song in korean, something so tender and nice that it lulls him to sleep.

 

 

The Red Square it's beautiful even when covered in snow, ancient buildings of the royal citadel with their colorful towers stand in front of them, there's a small cure before the Lenin's mausoleum.

Taehyung and Jungkook look at all of this with their coffees warming their gloves hands, staying quiet and admiring the sight.

“You know-” Taehyung begins “The Kremlin is right there.”

“Oh.” Jungkook spots the building Taehyung is pointing at.

“Putin's house.”

“You think he's home?”

“Maybe.”

Silence.

“Maybe Trump is there, too.” Taehyung looks at him “Licking all three of his nipples.”

“I'm gonna throw up.” Jungkook turns around and walks away, Taehyung's laugh filling the square, people turning to look at him curiously.

“You think Trump is a nipple person as well?”

“Taehyung, don't say this shit in Russia.” Jungkook keeps walking when Taehyung catches up to him.

“He may have more than three nipples, Jungkook.”

“Why are still talking about nipples?”

“He'll throw his toupee as Putin lactates on us.”

“Now it's not the time!”

“Then when will it be, Jungkook?!” Taehyung exclaims theatrically “They will attack and it's gonna be too late! Amsterdam will only be a dream! A mirage!”

“I will -and for the love of God, I've never been more honest- dump this cup of coffee all over your stupid pink beanie.”

Taehyung scoffs “Unbelievable. I'm so offended.”

 

 

Taehyung seems to like pidgeons, weirdly enough. Jungkook finds out he doesn't. The birds almost hoard around Taehyung once the boy starts throwing pieces of his sandwich to them, laughing happily at them, throwing his lunch away in a rather aggressive way.

“Yeah.” he hisses “Eat that shit. Oh, you like it don't you, you dirty-”

“I'll stop you right there.” Jungkook grabs Taehyung's sandwich and throws the whole thing as far as possible, the birds chasing it and leaving.

“Yah!” Taehyung slaps him on the shoulder “My lunch!”

“You weren't even eating it, shut up.” Jungkook splits his own sandwich in two and holds one part out for Tae “Here, eat this and stop feeding those things.”

Taehyung pouts but still accepts the food, eating it in silence.

Jungkook will admit that Moscow is beautiful. Weather aside, that is. It's old, you can feel it in every corner, every alley and wall, a city that is ancient, fascinating in every way. He wouldn't mind coming back here in the summer.

“Do your parents ever come to the competitions?” Taehyung asks him around a mouthful of sandwich.

“Sometimes.” Jungkook shrugs “I tell them not to, it's way better to see the performances at home, with good camera angles, slow motion and, like, warmth. 'Cause it's cold as fuck in the rink.”

“Preach it, brother.”

“Yours? Do they come?”

“They used to.” Taehyung nods to himself “They stopped after the incident.”

“Oh.”

“They were there when it happened, they said they never wanted to witness me like that ever again. They're still scared, you know? My mother hates it, she was so mad when I told her I was starting competing again.”

“Well, that's understandable.”

“Yeah, I know. It's fine, they still support me. Just- not as happily as they used to, that's all.”

“You know, I've never seen a video of your accident.”

Taehyung turns to him with wide eyes “For real?”

“Never wanted to, it just felt wrong.” Jungkook shrugs “I mean, I had never seen you skate either but I knew how famous you were so it just felt kind of twisted to watch it. Instead I watched your performance at Sochi.”

Taehyung smiles, scrunching up his nose “That's awfully cute of you.”

Jungkook looks away, he's pretty sure he would be blushing if it weren't for his already reddened cheeks, for once he'll have to thank the awful cold for sparing him the embarassment of a lifetime.

“Let's go back to the hotel, Jin-hyung's waiting for me.” Taehyung says, eating the last bite of the sandwich and standing up from the bench “Also, I'm pretty sure my butt is so numb you could stab it and I wouldn't feel anything.”

 

 

 

The morning of the free programs, Taehyung texts him, telling him he's gonna be a little late but that he'll be there for Jimin's performance.

Jungkook is with Namjoon and Hoseok on the bleachers, looking at the european athletes' performances, France as usual brings quality but still misses his triple Axel, turning it into a double and losing important points.

For the whole time, Hoseok takes notes on a little notebook, eyes darting from the paper to the rink, probably already imagining a new choreography for Taehyung.

“Jimin texted me this morning.” Namjoon says “Told me he feels confident.”

“He doesn't need confidence after that short program, we all know he's gonna win.” Jungkook replies, a young skater is up. He's from Spain, probably his first senior competition, he looks like he's about to shit himself right there in the middle of the rink.

“Ah, you never know what can happen.” Namjoon frowns “Wait, did it sound like I was throwing bad luck at Jimin?”

“Yep.”

“Shit, I'm sorry.” Namjoon sighs “Honestly, I really hope he wins, he deserves that.”

Jungkook nods “Also, he gets whiny when he doesn't land first at the Europeans.”

“Goddamn, he truly does.”

 

 

Taehyung shows up just before Jimin gets on the ice. Jungkook spots him at the bottom of the bleachers, Jin is with him. Taehyung looks up and Jungkook waves at him, gesturing him to come up. Taehyung, in return, gives him a tight smile and immediately looks away.

Jungkook slowly lowers his hand, ignoring the sting of disappointment. That was weird, they agreed to watch Jimin's performance together. Before he can start dwelling in his thoughts, the music starts, his eyes dart on the rink and are fixed on Jimin's figure.

It is an incredible routine, on a beautiful composition, slow and sensual at the beginning, Jimin moves on the ice as if he's trying to seduce every single person who's watching. After his first Loop the music picks up, quickening and changing almost completely in the theme, suddenly it's lively and cheerful, piano keys mixed with strings of violins. And now, after Taehyung's words, Jungkook can see the story of it. It's the story of how love grows, Jimin's love perhaps, tinged with nothing but lust at first and then turning into fondness and playfulness. It's about a relationship.

“Yoongi titled this song His.” Namjoon whispers in his ear after Jimin lands a combination of a quad Salchow and Triple Toe Loop.

Jungkook smiles. He can see that title in Jimin's choreography.

 

Jimin ends it all with a total score of 221 points square, adding the 97.8 points of the short it's a score of 319.8 points. And, just like that, he confirms his gold.

Taehyung disappears somewhere in between the award ceremony.

 

 

 

This after party it's boring. The music is bad, the food mediocre. Jungkook's only consolation is the alcohol, so he clings onto his flute of champagne as if it's the only thing keeping him alive.

“Kook?”

Jungkook blinks and looks at Jimin, who's staring at him with a frown “Yeah?”

“I've been calling you for ages, are you okay?” he asks “You look distracted.”

“Nah, I'm good.” Jungkook smiles, he's pretty sure Jimin can see how fake it is “What were you saying?”

“Oh, nothing important, just that I'll probably throw a little party in London. Nothing big, just close friends.”

Yoongi scoffs “Last time he said that he invited half of the figure skating world.”

“Shush.” Jimin elbows him in the ribs and the grey haired man mumbles a string of curses “Obviously, you're invited.”

“Yeah, sure, I'll come. I'll tell Namjoon, too.”

“Where is he anyway?” Yoongi asks, looking around the room “Haven't seen him in a while.”

“Probably fucking Seokjin somewhere.” Hoseok replies, munching on a finger sandwich “This shit is stale as hell.”

Jungkook looks at the entrance of the large room and his breath gets stuck in his breath when he sees Taehyung. He's talking to the young spanish skater, patting his shoulder with a large smile.

“Hold this for me.” Jungkook gives Jimin his glass and walks with large steps to Taehyung who, at some point, notices him approaching.

“Hi.” Taehyung says.

“Hi, can we talk?” Jungkook sends a quick smile to the spanish boy.

“I'm kinda busy.”

“He'll be right back.” Jungkook tells the boy, then grabs Taehyung's arm and starts walking out of the room.

“I didn't even get a drink, fuck's sake.” Taehyung mumbles, letting Jungkook drag him to one of the hallways near the elevators.

Once Jungkook is sure there's no one, he lets go of him and crosses his arms “Have you been avoiding me?”

Taehyung frowns “What?”

“It looked like you were.”

“No, I wasn't.”

Jungkook isn't buying it “Why didn't you come up the bleachers to us?”

“Me and Jin wanted to see the performance closer to the rink.” Taehyung replies smoothly, with a shrug of his shoulder. His whole demeanour is odd. He's talking to him as if they're barely aquaintances, not friends, not people who shared a bed more than once.

“Taehyung, what's wrong?” Jungkook asks, trying to soften his voice “Did something happened?”

Taehyung worries his bottom lip and shifts his weight on his right leg, staring at the floor “We need to stop.”

“Stop what?”

“Fucking.”

Oh.

Jungkook lets the silence linger for a while before he tilts his chin up in defiance “Why, am I not enough anymore?”

“That's not the point.”

“Are you back to Hoseok?”

“Hey!” Taehyung glares at him “He's got nothing to do with this.”

“Okay, then tell me what does.” Jungkook is raising his voice, anger numbing the hurt that a few simple words managed to infiltrate in his system “'Cause just yesterday we were walking around Moscow as if everything was fine, so I'd like to know what the fuck went wrong.”

Taehyung rolls his eyes and Jungkook kind of wants to punch him “Nothing went wrong! It's not- I just-”

“You what?”

“I don't have time for this!” Taehyung snaps suddenly, eyes wide and cheeks flushed “I don't- look, it was just sex and it should've stayed like this, I was fine with friendship but then you-” Taehyung shuts his mouth closed and Jungkook feels fucking fire in his veins.

“What, it's my fault?” it comes out in a hiss.

“You've started catching feelings, it's obvious.” Taehyung murmurs “You're a fucking open book.”

“So it's my fault.”

“Everything is so fucking- I don't know! It's raw with you! Your emotions are, you don't do grey, everything is black and white! It's either hate or love, either fucking or making love, and I'm not- I can't have that kind of luxury right now.”

“Are you hearing yourself?! Luxury, what even does that mean?!”

“Fuck's sake, Jeon!” Taehyung shouts, fucking stomping his foot on the floor like a child “I couldn't skate for a full year, I thought my career was done! I can't start a goddamn relationship now, I have to work! Like, whatever there is between us, I was fine with it when it was just sex, but it can't turn into something more!”

Jungkook shakes his head, laughing bitterly “This is insane. If you feel like it's becoming more than sex it's because it already is! It means that both of us-”

“I'm not in love with you!”

Jungkook stops speaking but his mouth stays open for a few seconds, Taehyung's words hang heavy in the air. He knew. He already knew Taehyung wasn't in love with him but Jesus, it hurts to hear it from his own mouth.

“I-” Taehyung swallows “I'm sorry, I-”

“It's okay.” Jungkook takes a step back.

“Jungkook-”

“You're right, whatever we have shouldn't become more.” Jungkook looks at him “After all, what did we even have?”

 

If someone were to ask him when was it that he fell in love with Taehyung, Jungkook would answer in a second that it was in Moscow, when Taehyung fell in the snow and started laughing. He was wearing a pink beanie and his red hair was damp.

If someone were to ask him when was it that his heart broke, Jungkook would answer in a second that it was only two days after he fell in love with Taehyung.

 

 

 

LOS ANGELES, AUGUST

 

 

 

Jungkook wakes up with a groan. He feels like shit, but his alarm is going off, even though it's almost as if he slept for two hours or so. He opens his eyes and squints them, wondering how it's possible that it's still dark if his alarm is going off. It takes him a few moments to realize that it's not his alarm that woke him up, just his ringtone.

He pats on the bedside table to find his phone and, hopefully, tell whoever it is that is calling him in the middle of the night to go fuck themselves. He finds and the light of the screen blinds him, he can make out the time, it's two in the morning.

He swipes right on the screen and puts the phone to his hear.

“Who is it?” he asks groggily, there's silence for a second.

“Hey.”

Jungkook is awake. Definitely awake, hell, he's ready to run a fucking marathon.

“Taehyung?”

“I woke you up.”

“Yeah.” Jungkook sits up on the bed and lays his back on the wall “You did.”

“Sorry.” there's rustling for a moment “Shit, it's two A.M. in Los Angeles? I didn't even notice it was so late. Or early, I guess. It depends on your view of the world, you know? Like, glass half empty or half full and all that shit.”

“What do you want?”

Yes, he's being petty. He has the right.

Taehyung sighs, it's quiet on his side of the phone “I'm in America.”

“'s that so?” Jungkook rubs his eyes.

“New York.”

“Cool.”

“I'm here for a shoot, for some magazine, don't remember. I'm so jetlagged.” a pause “Gotta say, their Burger King is the shit.”

“What do you want, Taehyung?”

“I just-” Jungkook hears him swallow hard “I just thought about you.”

“You thought about me.”

“All of this american air and I thought about you, yeah, sue me.”

Jungkook closes his eyes “You can't do this shit, Taehyung.”

“I don't-”

“It's selfish.” Jungkook whispers “You're being selfish.”

There's silence then, the room is dark and Jungkook can only make out the lines of his furniture, Taehyung's slow breathing in his ear.

“It is, isn't it?” Taehyung sniffs “I'm selfish like that.”

“Wait, are you- shit, don't cry, what the fuck?”

“I'm not!” he sniffles again, Jungkook is a weak bitch and his heart clenches.

“You're not the one who should cry!”

“I'm sorry if I'm an emotional asshole, okay?!”

“We're not gonna fight on the phone.” Jungkook sighs “Just- stop crying, don't make me feel like shit.”

“Listen , I just thought about you and I felt terrible and I- I think we should talk.” Taehyung mutters something in korean “I miss you.”

“You're such a fucking asshole.”

“I am, but we do need to talk.”

“Yeah, I know.”

“You'll be at Four CCs, right?”

“Yeah, of course.”

“Maybe we can talk there? Like, after the competition and everything, we should talk.” Taehyung clears his voice “I want to.”

Jungkook really wants to talk. He wants to talk badly, maybe it won't get them anywhere, but at least they can try to make it a little bit better. They have the same friends, they'll meet again in the future even outside of the rink, it would be stupid to keep this silence between them.

“Sure.” Jungkook nods even if Taehyung can't see him “Let's do that.”

“Okay.” there's relief in Taehyung's voice “Thank you.”

“And even if we don't end up talking, at least don't ignore me. Don't act like I'm not there.”

There are a few moments of silence before Taehyung speaks again “I could never do that, Jungkook.” he says, voice soft and it feels like a caress “Never.”

Jungkook decides to believe his words.

“I guess I'll see you then.” he says “Sorry, it's just- I'm tired and this is kind of a lot to process.”

“No, it's my fault for not thinking of how late it was.” Taehyung chuckles a little “Go get your beauty sleep.”

Jungkook laughs quiet at that, he's used to this, to the teasing. It's good.

“Goodnight Kim.”

“'Night Jeon.”

 

 

 

 

FOUR CONTINENTS CHAMPIONSHIP, TAIPEI, 2018

 

 

Jungkook didn't expect Taipei to be this warm. Sure, it doesn't feel like summer, but it's still quite hot and, most importantly, humid as hell. When Namjoon and he get to the hotel they're covered in sweat, lips dry and clothes uncomfortable on their bodies.

“Let's meet for dinner, yeah?” Namjoon says once they check in and get their keys “I need to take at least seven showers to get the moist off my skin.”

“Moist is such a nasty word.” Jungkook mutters as they walk to the elevators “It sounds dirty.”

Namjoon sighs and presses the call button “Has anyone ever told you you're annoying?”

Jungkook turns to look at him with his lips pursed “Well, thank you very much.”

“I mean, sometimes it sounds like you're doing it on purpose. I know moist sounds bad but it's the right word to use so, like, shut up?”

Jungkook, incredulous, stares at Namjoon's profile, the man keeping his eyes on the closed door of the elevator “I can't believe this. Fine, I'll never speak again.”

The elevator dings and the doors open, Jungkook steps inside quickly and Namjoon follows him “I didn't mean it like that.”

Jungkook shrugs, he puts himself in the corner of the elevator as far away as possible from Namjoon, who just pushes the button for the fourth floor.

“Anyways, Yoongi texted me, they'll be here tomorrow.”

Jungkook keeps quiet.

“They'll probably come and see us at the rink during training.”

More silence. Namjoon sighs.

“Are you for real?”

Jungkook raises his middle finger at him.

“You're a goddamn child.”

Jungkook kisses the tip of his finger. His phone buzzes in the pocket of his jeans, so he takes it and checks the text.

 

Taehyung

Are you at the hotel?

 

 

Jungkook frowns, he types his reply.

 

 

 

Yeah

 

 

Taehyung

Room 501

 

 

 

“Fucking piece of shit.” Jungkook hisses, stuffing angrily his phone back in the pocket.

“Well, shit Kook, I'm sorry if I offended you that much.” Namjoon says, looking at him with wide eyes.

“What? No, not you.” Jungkook sighs, the elevator reaches the fourth floor and they both step outside “Taehyung texted me.”

“And?”

“I don't know if he thinks I'm his fucking bootycall or what.”

Namjoon arches an eyebrow “I mean, you kinda are, right? Ah, that's my room.”

“We're not fucking anymore.” Jungkook mutters, walking past Namjoon as he stops in front of his room, his own is just three doors later “I'm an idiot and-”

“Caught feelings?” Namjoon looks at him with what Jungkook can only describe as a disappointed told you so expression.

“Whatever.” Jungkook waves at him “I'll see you at dinner.”

 

 

 

Once he's done with his shower and has the clothes ready for the training session tomorrow morning, Jungkook puts on some clean clothes and goes to Taehyung's room.

He knocks twice, ready to unleash if Taehyung actually called him for sex, then the door swings open and- and he missed him. God, he missed him.

“Hey.” Taehyung smiles a little, red hair fluffy and skin flushed, still a little damp under his shirt, he probably just got out of the shower too.

“Hi.”

Jungkook stays still just outside the room, Taehyung staring at him with his mouth agape, almost as if he wants to say something. He blinks and plasters on a wider smile.

“I made tea.” he says “Wanna have tea with me?”

“I- I guess.”

“And we can chat. Like, not have the talk.” Taehyung worries his bottom lip “But we can chat. With tea. And maybe Netflix if the Hotel's wifi survives.”

“Okay.” Jungkook swallows nervously “Yeah, sure.”

Taehyung steps aside and lets Jungkook in, their room look basically the same, the difference being that Taehyung has all of his clothes thrown everywhere, the only things neatly folded in transparent plastic bags are the costumes for the competition.

There are two armchairs around a coffee table, where two cups of tea are already there waiting, steaming still.

Taehyung gestures him clumsily to one of the armchairs and Jungkook guesses that maybe he's not the only one who's nervous. He sits down and Taehyung does the same on the chair in front of him, pulling his knees to his chest and-

“Are you wearing boy shorts?”

Taehyung freezes “I- Yes?”

“Oh.”

Shit.

“I swear I'm not trying to seduce you. They're just comfortable.”

“No, right, of course, don't worry.” Jungkook hastily grabs his cup of tea and blows on it “It's just legs. Nothing I haven't seen before.”

Taehyung presses his lips in a tight line. That wasn't the smart thing to say. This is a mess.

Taehyung leans forward and takes his cup of tea, blowing gently on it before looking up at Jungkook “Did your nose get bigger?”

Jungkook arches an eyebrow “Seriously?”

“I panicked, sorry.”

“Let's- you know what, let's start with the basics.” Jungkook takes a deep breath “How are you?”

“Good.” Taehyung smiles, a little more at ease “You?”

“I'm fine, worked my ass off until yesterday.”

Taehyung grimaces “Same, Jin and Hoseok were trying to kill me this time, not train me.”

“Namjoon today told me I'm annoying!” Jungkook exclaims, yes he's still bitter about it “Just 'cause I pointed out that moist is the worst word ever.”

“Moist is the worst word!”

“Exactly, unbelievable.”

Taehyung clicks his tongue “I can't believe Kim Namjoon, an intellectual, would dare say such things when confronted with the outmost truth.”

Jungkook furrows his eyebrows “When the fuck did you start talking like that?”

“I learned a lot of new words!” Taehyung brightens immediately, eyes glistening, looking so damn adorable Jungkook has a hard time not clutching his chest “I want to sound smart during interviews.”

“You are smart.”

“I want to sound smarter than the white people who interview me.”

“Now that's a good reason to learn english.” Jungkook chuckles and tries some of the tea. It's still really hot, but pleasant on his tongue even if the weather is already warm, there's a sweet aftertaste in his mouth that he finds he rather enjoys.

“Did you know Shoma Uno is here, too?” Taehyung coos “He's such an adorable kid, I met him when I went to see the Junior World Championship three years ago.”

“So, he might actually kick our ass.”

“Yeah, he might.” Taehyung's smile falls “Oh god, he actually might.”

Jungkook shivers. He's seen Shoma skate, he's young but he's merciless, even if he's still a bit unsure on some of the landings he still delivers beautifully. Also, he's adorable, judges like that.

“Let's not think about it.” Jungkook shakes his head “We'll be fine.”

“Yeah, we will. Of course we will.” Taehyung grins from behind his cup “I feel good about this, you know?”

“Yeah?”

“Confident as fuck.”

Jungkook looks down at his cup “You should be.”

A short silence fall, when Jungkook looks at Taehyung again he finds him smiling at him, eyes warm and cheeks pink. This, this is good. Talking to him as if nothing happened, like they used to, comfortable enough to say what's on their mind. Jungkook missed this more than he missed having Taehyung's body under his hands.

“Wanna try some Netflix?”

“What did you have in mind?” Jungkook asks, Taehyung shrugs.

“I don't know. Miraculous Ladybug?”

“What?”

Taehyung's eyes widen in shock “You don't know what Miraculous Ladybug is?”

“No?”

“Just the best kid's cartoon ever?! Marinette is a badass and there's a solid unrequited but actually not unrequited love going on? Also, she's half chinese half french.”

“You convinced me at she's a badass, but you asked my hand in marriage at unrequited but not unrequited love.”

 

 

Jungkook and Taehyung end up bingewatching the entire first season. Jungkook doesn't regret a thing.

When he finally leaves it's because he's supposed to meet Namjoon for dinner and, if he doesn't show up, he's actually not going to see the light of the next day. Taehyung waves at him from the bed, all curled up on a pillow, with sleepy eyes. Jungkook falls in love a bit more.

 

 

 

 

Jungkook is shitting his pants. Taehyung, standing besides him, is shitting his pants as well.

“He-” Jungkook stares at the screen where Shoma Uno just scored 97 points after one of the best Short Programs Jungkook has ever seen “He's going to bury us all.”

“Oh my God, can you imagine what would have happened if Hanyu was going to perform, too?” Taehyung hisses “We'd be dead.”

“We can do better than that.” Jungkook sends Taehyung a pleading look “Right?”

“Right!” Taehyung nods “Of course.”

There's a pause, then “I'm gonna take a piss.” Taehyung says “I have nervous pee in my bladder.”

He starts walking away but, suddenly, he collides hard with someone. Taehyung stumbles back and he apologizes to the man he bumped into.

Jungkook recognizes him, he's Yong, a chinese skater, poor results at the last Four Continents, but he usually performs beautifully. The man stares at Taehyung for a few seconds before he scoffs and walks away.

“Well shit.” Jungkook mutters, looking at the back of the chinese skater “What's up with him?”

“He hates me.” Taehyung replies with a pout “He started doing bad after I beat his ass at Worlds two years ago, he can't stand my fucking guts. Did you know he deliberately interfered with my warm ups at my last NHK Trophy?”

“For real?” Jungkook glares in the direction where Yong has disappeared “Piece of shit.”

“Yeah.” Taehyung sighs “I really need to pee.”

 

 

 

Jungkook always liked the fact that Namjoon tells him to aim for gold just before he starts performing.

He's always wanted to win gold, always skates chasing it, he's been competitive since he was a kid, Jungkook dived in this kind of life with the dream of only the weight of a gold medal on his chest. But when Namjoon tells him to aim for gold, that's when Jungkook actually craves it. That's when it feels real, within reach.

That's his concept. His first story.

The golden rookie who's never seen gold stretches his hand out for it, imagining it just a few inches away, yet unmistakibly too far. So he lands his Salchow imagining what it would feel like to stand on the highest step of the podium, he spins with the feeling of arms around his back for the first time. In his combination he can almost taste the moment they put the medal around his neck, heavy and glistening under the artificial lights, burning on his chest.

This time, he skates with a story in his mind and a real purpose.

 

 

The Kiss and Cry feels scarier then ever when he sits down, waving at the camera with a forced smile and Namjoon's arm around his shoulders.

“That was probably your best one yet.” he says.

“Yeah?” Jungkook looks at the screen, waiting for the score “It felt like seconds, not minutes.”

When the scores actually appear, Jungkook can't help but gasp.

 

 

Technical score: 51.9

Presentation: 49

Total score: 100, 9

 

 

“Holy shit.” Namjoon whispers, even though the camera probably caught that. Jungkook can't help but smile proudly, bowing slightly and clapping his hands just below his chin, to giddy with the result to really care of how silly he must look right now. That's his new personal score, the first time he manages to get a three digits score on a short program, he has the right to be happy about it.

 

 

Taehyung skates so well that it almost angers Jungkook when the red haired misses a rotation from his Quad Salchow. He's skating on a beautiful piece, a jazz song he's never heard before, Jungkook can see he's telling the story of a seduction of some sorts, of two people chasing each other, but he still misses that rotation.

He ends up still with an impressive score of 99.9 points. But, for the first time ever, Taehyung is one point behind him even if he's in full shape and Jungkook is in the lead.

“You're gonna have to keep it. Keep that gap.” Namjoon tells him once Taehyung leaves the rink, a sheepish smile on his face and chest heaving “Don't let him take this from you, okay?”

Jungkook swears to himself he won't. Not this time.

 

 

 

Jimin is all smiles and flushed cheeks when he goes to Jungkook's room, the sight makes him frown.

“The fuck? Did you just come here after Yoongi ate your ass or what?”

Jimin's smile falls and the boy slaps him on the chest “Don't be vulgar.”

Jungkook grins and lets him in, they both go sit on the private balcony, the air of Taipei's night still too warm, but there's still a pleasant breeze breaking on their skin. Jimin sits on one of the two armchairs and sends Jungkook a wide smile “You're in the lead for the first time, how does it feel?”

“Pretty good.” Jungkook smiles back, making himself comfortable on his chair “Although I'm nervous as fuck for tomorrow.”
Jimin nods “You're gonna be fine, I know you will. I mean, I've seen your routine and I even helped you with the choreo, so no way you're not gonna do great.”

“So I'm gonna do great only 'cause you helped me with the choreo?”

“Of course.” Jimin replies without missing a beat, eyes serious. Jungkook has to admit that Jimin's help probably raised his chances of gold by a lot of points.

Jungkook looks at the view from his balcony, the city still alight, cars speeding in the street, when he looks back at Jimin he's smiling widely again. Too wide. Even for Jimin, that smile is too large.

“You gonna tell me why you look like you reached heaven or-”

“He asked me.”

Jungkook furrows his brows “Who asked you what?”

“Yoongi.” Jimin bites his bottom lip “He asked me.”

Jungkook takes a second to figure out what the hell Jimin is talking about but when he does he yells, Jimin startles and clutches his chest.

“He asked you to marry him?!” Jungkook shouts, eyes blown wide, Jimin hesitantly nods “Holy shit! That's- that's huge! You're getting married! With him! I'm gonna bust a nut!”

“Please don't.”

“How?!”

Jimin shrugs, that delighted smile back on his lips “We were half asleep, just watching tv in bed and at some point he started sighing and sighing so I asked him what's wrong. He looked at me for like a full two minutes, then he said You know what, fuck it, marry me.” Jimin chuckles “So I asked him where my ring was, he cursed, went to the kitchen and came back with a goddamn onion ring from leftovers of two days before.”

Jungkook snickers “That's so cheesy for him.”

“I know, it melted my heart.” Jimin sighs “So guess what?” Jimin raises his left hand and, sure enough, there's an actual ring on his fourth finger, silver with a single stone in the middle, an opaque black jem “This british bitch is getting married.”

Jungkook looks at the ring with eyes full of wonder, he swears his own heart is beating way too fast “I'm still- holy shit.”

“That's what I said, too.” Jimin clicks his tongue “All night long.”

“Okay, that's too much information.” Jungkook smiles at his friend “I'm happy for you.”

“I'm happy, too.”

“When are you gonna get married?”

“Hell if I know.” Jimin shrugs “I don't know. Don't care, honestly, we're still young, we're gonna figure it out.”

“Ask the queen to be at the ceremony.”

“Of course I will, she's a mate of mine.” Jimin turns serious then, looking at Jungkook with concern “I heard about what happened with Tae.”

“Oh.” Jungkook gulps “He told you?”

“Honestly, he's an idiot. Told you, he's a prick.” Jimin pats his shoulder “I'm sure you both will find a solution though.”

“I hope so.” Jungkook looks down at his lap “I honestly don't- I mean, I'd lie if I said I don't want him to love me back- but I don't want him to force it, you know? Like, he shouldn't feel guilty or shit like that, after all it was all me.”

Jimin shakes his head “No, it wasn't. You don't do this kinda things alone, there's always two people. He has his own share of fault here and, like, he's a mess okay? He's full of flaws and he's not really good at dealing with these things but, still, give him a chance.” Jimin plays with his ring for a moment “He feels terrible about it, he cares about you. A lot.”

“No, I know.” Jungkook plasters a smile “He's not heartless, I know he's sorry. We'll figure it out.”

Jimin smiles at him “You will.”

 

 

 

 

There's this thing that Jungkook didn't really think about, didn't even begin to consider a possibility when this whole deal with Taehyung started. That's jealousy.

He's never been jealous, not to some kind of creepy extent, but still, he's only human. And it wouldn't be such a strong feeling if it were with anyone else, but it's the fact that the one who's hugging Taehyung right now, just before warm ups, in a spot where they think no one will see them, is Hoseok. Now that, that fucking hurts.

Jungkook stays still where he is, staring at Hoseok who's holding Taehyung under the bleachers, nose nuzzling his head, lips moving and brushing against Taehyung's red hair. Taehyung has his face tucked in the crook of Hoseok's neck, nodding once in a while, hands clutching at the fabric of Hoseok's jacket.

Jungkook finally looks away and leaves, moving back to the rink where Namjoon is waiting for him. He sits on the bench, waiting for when warm ups start, jealousy biting his insides, something like disappointment and anger slowly but surely burning in his chest.

Taehyung appears a few minutes later, he sits next to Jungkook with a deep sigh.

“I'm nervous as fuck.” he says, Jungkook ties the laces of his skates tighter “Are you nervous?”

“Yes.”

“What if I fall?”

“Shit happens.”

Jungkook knows Taehyung is now looking at him, can feel his gaze on his skin “Are you okay?”

“Sure.” the staff starts opening the rink and skaters are already pouring inside, Jungkook stands up and makes to leave but Taehyung's hand dart around his wrist.

“Hey, seriously, what's up?”

“I don't know.” Jungkook sends him a glare and swats Taehyung's hand away “Ask Hoseok.”

Taehyung's mouth falls open but no sound comes out for a few seconds. Then his whole expression hardens, eyes burning with rage and he stands up “What are you, five?” he hisses “God, stop acting like a-”

“I fucking dare you to say it.” Jungkook snaps back, pointing a finger at him “I'm not the piece of shit who decided to call me in the middle of the night because he missed me, because he thought of me, I'm not the one who yelled at my face that he's not in love with me, so don't you fucking dare calling me a child when you can barely live without someone holding your hand.”

Just like that, the anger on Taehyung's face shifts in something close to misery, his eyes welling up, he traps his bottom lip between his teeth and steps back.

“You're-” he tries, but then he shakes his head “Fuck you, Jeon.”

It comes out tired, no menace whatsoever, just a tired curse thrown there out of despair. Taehyung walks past him and takes his protectors off, throwing them on the ground and stepping on the rink.

 

 

 

Maybe this time, with anger on his side, maybe he will win gold. Maybe he'll have it, for the first time, maybe. He'll stand in the middle of the podium, arms around his back, gold heavy when it hangs from his neck. God, that would feel so good. For some reason, he can already taste it, the feeling of it all, not out of stupid confidence. He just feels it. And, honestly, he knows he'd look good in gold.

But.

There's a voice in his head that tells him that maybe, just maybe, he isn't going to win gold because he wants it, but he'll win it out of spite. Like some sort of petty vendetta, just because his heart is shattering right on the ice. He's not proud of it.

Jungkook looks in front of him, there are two skaters dividing him from Taehyung, everyone minding their own business as they warm up, music loud from the speakers. The problem is, Taehyung still looks awfully beautiful even when his eyes are veiled with anger. Shit, he's glowing today, the ivory dress shirt contrasting so nicely with his tan skin and Jungkook can almost hate him for it, for looking so wonderful even now. Jungkook hates himself for still wanting him so bad, even after all of what happened.

He sees Taehyung moving away from the line, going closer to the middle to try out a jump. Taehyung turns around, he's already setting up his jump when Jungkook sees a body approaching Taehyung fast. Jungkook has time to recognize the skater as Yong, the man from the short programs, coming from the opposite direction diagonally, he seems like he's setting a jump as well but there is something about it that just doesn't feel right, he's going too fast, too close.

Jungkook opens his mouth to yell at Taehyung to move out of the way but it's already too late. Taehyung barely has time to notice what is about to happen, he tries to raise his arm to cover his face but he's not fast enough, Yong collides with him hard. Taehyung's head knocks back as Yong's elbows hits against his temple, Jungkook sees Taehyung's ankle twisting horribly, his whole body thrown back and he lands on the ice on his left shoulder, sliding on the surface with the strength of the impact. Yong as well stumbles back until he's knees on the ice but Jungkook doesn't care.

Everyone stopped moving, the audience gasps loudly, Jungkook can't move his legs.

He stares at Taehyung's body, limp on the ice, chest heaving, he can't see his face. The finally his body snaps out of the shock and he moves, skating fast to Taehyung until he's close enough and he kneels down, almost fucking crawling to him until he can see Taehyung's face.

“Don't move.” Jungkook says with his voice shaking “Don't fucking move.”

Taehyung has his eyes wide open, staring in front of him, hands shaking and a line of blood trailing down from his temple to his cheekbone, skin open close to his eye.

“Tae?” Jungkook reaches for his hand and holds it, the skaters are clearing the rink as protocol “Taehyung, tell me what hurts.”

Silence, he's not even sure if Taehyung heard him.

“Taehyung, please.”

Slowly, Taehyung trains his eyes on him, still breathing hard, he's sweating and Jungkook has never seen him this pale, all the gold has disappeared from his skin.

“Shoulder.” he manages to reply “Head.”

“Okay.” Jungkook swallows “Do you think you can move the shoulder or-”

“My ankle hurts.” Taehyung says, voice eerily steady “Jungkook, my ankle hurts.”

He doesn't need to ask which one, not when Taehyung is looking at him with fear painting his face. Jungkook clenches his jaw, heart hammering, he squeezes Taehyung's hand, then there's someone behind him.

“Is he okay?” Yong asks. He looks fine, just something off in the way he's standing, probably due to his fall “I'm sorry, I- he came out of nowhere and I didn't see him.”

But he did. He did see him. Jungkook knows he did, Yong had full visual on the rink, on Taehyung, Yong shouldn't have been anywhere close to the center of the rink.

Taehyung gives his hand a hard squeeze, Junkook glares at Yong.

“Stay away from him.”

“What?” Yong frowns, he licks his lips and starts kneeling down “It was an accident, you aren't possibly saying I-”

“Get the fuck away from him.” Jungkook repeats, this time harder, this time sending a real threat. Because Yong needs to go away, for his own fucking sake.

Yong narrows his eyes but still skates away to the boards, Jungkook follows his movements the whole time, Yong's trainer is waiting for him, looking at him with wide eyes.

Finally, the paramedics show up, hurrying up to them.

“The fucking piece of shit did it on purpose.” Jungkook whispers, still holding Taehyung's head, still feeling like his heart will actually blow up unless it slows down.

The paramedics kneel down next to Taehyung and, carefully, start pressing their hands on his back.

“Does it hurt where I'm touching?” one of them asks, a woman with small eyes and plump lips.

“No.” Taehyung murmurs in reply, the woman says something to her colleague and, slowly, they start turning Taehyung around so that he's laying on his back, the woman gets a small flashlight from the pocket of her jacket as the male paramedic starts examining Taehyung's shoulder after Jungkook points at it.

“Can you tell me your name?” she asks once she turns on the light and points it at Taehyung's eyes.

“Kim Taehyung.”

“What's the date?”

“January 28.” He still looks a little breathless, way too pale, but not as terrified as before, yet he still holds on Jungkook's hand as if it's his safeline.

“Okay, no concussion.” she says, Jungkook sighs in relief.

He looks up and catches Jimin's eyes, huge and laced with worry from where he's standing behind the boards, holding on Yoongi's arm. Jin is there as well, Hoseok staring at the scene with a hand over his mouth. Jungkook tries to send them a reassuring smile.

“Shoulder's fine.” the male medic says “Just a really bad hit, you shouldn't move it too much now, also-”

“My ankle.” Taehyung interrupts him with urgency in his voice “Is it broken?”

“Which one hurts?”

“Right.”

The man gently grabs Taehyung's foot, he twists it a little and Taehyung hisses, the hold on Jungkook's hand turns painful.

“Can you move it for me?”

Taehyung does, jaw clenched in pain the whole time.

“It's not broken, badly sprained.”

The breath of relief that surges through Taehyung is loud, his whole body almost going limp as the tension and stiffness disappears. Jungkook swears his own hearts finally stops hammering against his ribcage.

“We need to get you up, slowly.” the woman says.

“I got you, come on.” Jungkook says, freeing his hand from Taehyung's and putting it under his arm, his other free arm goes around Taehyung's waist and, carefully, he helps him get up.

Taehyung's weight is almost all on Jungkook, but it's fine, he still manages to get on his feet, he closes his eyes for a moment, looking dizzy, then he opens them and nods. Jungkook drags Taehyung with him as he moves to the opening of the rink, at the exit Jin and Hoseok are already waiting for them with their arms forward, ready to catch Taehyung if needed.

“Get the protectors, easy on the right ankle.” Jungkook says as soon as they're close enough, Jimin's eyes widen.

“The right ankle?!” he hisses.

“It's not broken.” Jungkook says, hoping to calm them all down as he holds Taehyung up, Jin already putting the protectors on the blades.

“I think I can walk.” Taehyung mutters, Hoseok scoffs.

“You're not walking alone, let us help you.”

“I really-”

Hoseok snaps something in korean, words cut short and sharp, he's probably on edge as much as everyone else. Taehyung rolls his eyes but nods, so Hoseok puts his arm around Taehyung's back and helps Jungkook to drag Taehyung out of the rink. As soon as they're out Jungkook lets go of Taehyung, the other turning his head sharply at him.

“No, where are you-”

“I'm putting on my protectors, then I get to you, just go get that ankle checked for real.”

Taehyung grimaces but he lets Hoseok push him away, they walk with Jin following them away from the arena and inside the reserved area.

Namjoon holds the protectors out to him, lips tight and skin pale “That was the nastiest colliding I've seen in a long time.”

“It was on purpose.” Jungkook grits out, angrily covering the blades of his skates with the plastic protectors.

“I had that feeling, too.” Jimin says “That was weird.”

“It ain't a feeling, I've seen it happen.” Jungkook straightens up and takes a deep breath “The commitee will see it as well, I'm sure of it.”

“If it's true then they'll handle it.” Yoongi nods towards the entrance for the area reserved to the athletes “Let's go, come on.”

Jungkook grabs the jersey Namjoon is holding for him and hastily shrugs it on, then he follows Yoongi to the reserved room, skipping through the reporters that are already crowding the area and ignoring them.

Taehyung is sitting on a chair with his right leg raised on a stool, the same medic from before slowly palming Taehyung's ankle, now naked, the skate casted aside. The male medic is cleaning the wound on his temple, dabbing a piece of cotton over it.

Taehyung has his eyes closed and head tipped back, clearly trying to calm down after the wave of adrenaline and dread that just hit him a few minutes ago.

“How are you, Tae?” Jimin asks.

“Sore as fuck.” he replies, opening an eye “Not in the sexy way.”

“I see he's still a brat.” Jungkook says, Taehyung grants him a short grin.

“Put that on my gravestone. Family to some, friend to everyone, best fuck of a lifetime to lots, still a brat.”

Jungkook cracks a smile “That's oddly specific.”

“I know myself very well.”

The woman looks up from Taehyung's ankle “You got lucky. It's a bad sprain but nothing that won't heal quickly.”

Jin groans in relief “Jesus Christ, thank you.”

Namjoon frowns “You look like you're about to faint.”

“I might, actually, find me a chair.”

Namjoon shakes his head but still goes to get a plastic chair for him, putting it behind Jin, the man dropping on it immediately.

“Can I skate?” Taehyung asks, the woman smiles.

“Of course you can skate, I told you, it will heal quickly.”

“No, I mean now.” Taehyung pauses “Can I skate now?”

Silence falls in the room, the male medic stops with an adhesive gauze in his hand and sends an incredulous look to Taehyung, who seems totally indifferent to the clear tension in the air.

“Taehyung.” Jin says, oddly calm, which is all kinds of red flags “You are not competing today.”

“I think I am.”

“Not with that ankle.”

“It's not broken, right?”

The woman shakes her head hesitantly.

“So you can, like, put it back together real quick, bandage it tight, give me a pain killer and I'm good to go?”

“No!” Jimin shouts, looking at Taehyung like he's gone mad “Are you fucking insane?! Do you want to break it again?!”

“You're a medic.” Taehyung says, staring at the woman right in the eyes “You can't lie to me. Are there a lot of possibilities my ankle will break even if I am a skater who is well aware of how to land and how hard to land?”

The woman looks at Taehyung for a few moments, lips pressed together and small eyes darting from Taehyung's face down to his ankle. She sighs.

“There aren't.”

“At all?”

“It's a sprain, not even that bad after I checked it, it's not even swollen yet.”

“Then it's settled.”

“Taehyung.” Jungkook tries to keep the volume of his voice as moderate as possible, bud God knows how much he'd like to scream at the red haired's face right now “No fucking way.”

Taehyung trains his gaze on him and smiles “Since when did you succeed in changing my mind?”

“I-” Jungkook closes his eyes and takes a steading breath “I'm fucking begging you, don't be stupid.”

Taehyung shrugs “I am stupid. Come on, doc!” he grins at the woman “Bandage it up.”

Jin groans loudly, startling everyone, then he stands up from the chair and slaps Namjoon's chest.

“The fuck was that for?!”

“I had to hit someone and you were the closest.” Jin replies, then points his finger at Taehyung “I fucking hate you.”

 

 

 

 

“You won't be able to land them well with that bandage, it's too tight.” Jin says, Taehyung is holding on the boards “So focus on the rotations. Careful, please, I can't stress this enough, careful on the spins.”

“Yes.”

“Taehyung.” Jin puts his hand over Taehyung's “Please, kid, be careful.”

Taehyung smiles, then looks at Jungkook. The edge of the gauze sticks under the green bandana he has on his forehead.

“Do you have anything to say to me before I go?”

Jungkook thinks about it. He has many things to say. Like, for example, that this is madness. That this is so reckless and dangerous, even for Taehyung's standards, that he might end his career if he lands one of the jumps wrong, that he should just step back this time, the Jungkook still loves him so fucking much, that this isn't worth it.

Instead, he says “Aim for gold.”

Taehyung gives him one of those smiles of his, all boxy and warm, then he slams his hands once on the board and pushes himself back, going to the center of the rink, with the roaring and cheers of the audience.

Jungkook looks at him as Taehyung settles himself in his starting position.

The music starts. Jungkook doesn't recognize it, but it's a lovely melody, charming and melancholic. Taehyung holds out his arms as if he's trying to grab something, but then he skates in the opposite direction. He settles his first jump, a quad salchow, it's beautiful in the air, the moment the blade is back on the ice it's axis is completely wrong, Taehyung falls on his right thigh but pulls himself up again in a second. The step sequence is still smooth, still beautiful to the eye, but Jungkook knows that it's usually way better, way more pleasing. Second quad, Loop, the rotations are there even if the angle is awkward, but Taehyung has his right leg not raised enough so when he lands it's with both feet on the ice, causing a second fall, this one looks more painful than the first, but he still gets up again.

Taehyung looks at the judges, almost teases them when he holds out a hand for them, only to pull it back in a second, mischief in his eyes. Jungkook feels like he's seen it before, this kind of gaze, the challenge that holds it.

Taehyung jumps again, triple flip, not very high but still good in the evolution, he lands it nicely even if there's a flash of pain creeping on his face for a second. He's already doing a Death Drop, then his Camel Spin, leg raised perfectly, he drops to a Sit Spin that turns into an A, the whole sequence smooth in the transiction, all of the elements performed on the left leg so that he has more ease. He stops moving as the music halts.

The melody, surprisingly, slows down, Taehyung's eyes turn from teasing to something else, something softer, akin to fondness maybe. Jungkook knows Taehyung looked at him like that once, back in London, right before he kissed him before leaving.

There's choreos elements now, Jungkook looks closely as Taehyung moves on the ice, that look of fondness still on his face, a small smile tugging at his lips. In his serpentine Taehyung caresses his face and leans into the touch and, when he does, he's looking at Jungkook.

And now he feels like he knows what the story of this performance is. An apology. For him. And it works, it works so fucking good, because all the anger he had in his body is gone the moment a gasp of realization leaves his lips.

Taehyung sets his next jump, the Triple Axel is gorgeous and high but he doesn't land it, falling on his elbow and then up on his feet again, simple steps, a triple Salchow that Jungkook has no idea as to how Taehyung manages to land, then half of what is supposed to be a triple Axel in a jump sequence that he can usually do with his eyes closed. But he still lands them.

The Loop can't be counted, it's under rotated, he falls on his left side and, this time, it takes him a few seconds to get himself back up, the strain clear on his face, next to Jungkook Jin is holding his breath.

There's another jump, Jungkook can't even understand what Taehyung was trying to do, it barely has rotation and he lands flat and on the back of the blade, falling on his back. Taehyung gets on his knees with difficulty, sweat dribbling down his face, he pushes himself up with an effort that is almost heartbreaking. But he gets up and keeps going.

A camel spin follows, then down to a broken leg spin, upright and Taehyung keeps spinning on himself until he plants his foot on the ice and it's over. Taehyung is facing him, a hand slightly raised, chest heaving and legs almost shaking. And he's looking at him.

Because it wasn't an apology, it was a plead. To take him back.

That's when Jungkook realizes that he'll never be at Taehyung's level. Not after this. And he's fine with it.

The crowd's roaring, Taehyung keeps staring at him as if he's waiting for something. So Jungkook nods and holds out his hand as well, to let him know that yes. Yes, he's forgiven. He's back.

Taehyung drops his hand to his side and finally turns to the audience, smiling weakly and bowing, he keeps it short, when he starts skating back to the exit his right ankle is raised from the ice, not touching it, left leg wobbling and eyes unfocused.

“Shit, grab him.” Jin says and Jungkook is already getting in front of the opening with an arm forward. Taehyung grabs his hand and he lets Jungkook drag him out and keep him up by holding him on his waist.

“Adrenaline's off.” Taehyung mutters “I'm so gonna faint.”

“Here.” Hoseok appears from behind Jin with a bottle of water, already uncapped and Taehyung grabs it, downing the liquid hastily.

“Don't faint, what would your mother say if you faint in front of all these white people?” Jungkook asks, trying to keep his head working.

Taehyung chuckles breathlessly “You really know what to say to keep me awake out of spite.”

Jin looks around for a moment “Eyes wide open and head up, cameras everywhere.”

“I'm gonna fucking spit on a camera right now.” Taehyung takes a deep breath “I'm good.”

“Yeah, right.” Jungkook grumbles and Taehyung pats his hand.

“I'm fine Jeon, I gotta get to the kiss and cry. I'm good, seriously.”

Jungkook hesitantly lets go of him and Taehyung manages to keep himself up with a hand on the board, Jin rushes to his side and circles his arm around his shoulders “We gotta get to the Kiss and Cry, can you do that?”

“Please, I'm peachy. Could run a marathon or two.”

“Then let's go.”

Taehyung nods and they start walking away, Taehyung turns his head around and sends Jungkook a small grin.

“Thank you.” Hoseok says, patting him on the back “Seriously, thank you for rushing to him when he got hit.”

Jungkook shakes his head “No, don't thank me, I've done nothing.”

Hoseok smiles “Does it mean he's forgiven? 'Cause, honestly, he wouldn't fucking stop moping, even before the warm ups, he basically was on the verge of tears, the idiot. Wouldn't calm down even when I hugged him.”

“Oh.”

Hoseok shrugs “That's Taehyung for you.”

Fuck, he's an idiot.

 

 

 

Technical score: 75.58

Presentation: 84.02

Deductions: -5

Total score: 154.60

Adding the score from the Short Program it's 254.5 points. Which is fucking insane.

Taehyung cries when he sees the score, half because he can't believe he still managed to do this good, the other half because he could've done so much more. Jin holds his hand with a smile on his face.

Jungkook knows he'll never be able to reach that level. Now he knows.

 

 

 

 

 

“Aim for gold.” Namjoon whispers it this time “I know you don't want it right now, but aim for gold.”

But that's the point. Jungkook really fucking wants it, even now.

 

He had a concept in his head. It was his chase to gold. He thinks about when he lands his Salchow, he thinks about during his combination, triple Loop after the triple Axel.

That was his idea at first, his want for gold that seemed so distant and, now, Jungkook knows it's just there. It doesn't feel right anymore, he's not fighting for it, he knows his score will be better than Taehyung's, than anyone's actually. So what is he chasing really? After all, what he really wanted wasn't gold, was it? Yes, sure, gold would great, gold will be fucking wonderful, but it was something else. He wanted aknowledgement. He wanted Taehyung to look at him in the eyes and say you're competition.

But now it doesn't feel right. So he changes his concept, he changes his story.

So every jump, every spin, every step, it's a tale about forgiveness. He might as well give Taehyung his message just the way Tae did. On the ice, after all, everything is a lot more real.

And Taehyung was right, with him everything is black and white and his feelings are raw, bare for everyone to see, he might as well start screaming it now for those who are watching him skate. He's still in love, probably will be for a very long time, and he's forgiving Taehyung.

 

 

TECHINAL SCORE: 79.5

PRESENTATION: 84.6

DEDUCTIONS: 0

TOTAL SCORE: 164.1

 

With the short's score it's 264.1.

Namjoon's hand squeezes his knee “Jungkook.”

“Uh.”

“You're gold.”

“I am.” Jungkook feels his lips stretching in a smile “I fucking am.”

He's gold.

And yes. It does feel good.

 

 

 

 

“How the hell are you still up?” Jungkook whispers when they start getting on the podium.

“I'm high off painkillers, don't tell my mom.” Taehyung replies.

He looks so exhausted, Jungkook is surprised he's even walking.

The skater from Africa is second, Jungkook is first, Taehyung is third.

Having arms around his back feels good, Gold medal is heavy against his chest just like he expected.

“Feels good, uh?” Taehyung asks, still smiling for the cameras.

“Yeah.”

“You would've won even if I hadn't had that accident.”

Jungkook grimaces for a split second “Not so sure about it.”

“I am.” Taehyung frowns “Why do I feel an arm around my back.”

“That's because I'm holding your shirt.”

“Why?”

“You look like you're ready to pass out, I'm keeping you up.” Jungkook pauses “You should see a doctor like right now, you're gonna feel this tomorrow.”

“I will see a doctor the moment we're done here and, trust me, I'm already feeling it.” Taehyung smiles wide, bronze looks so wrong on him.

“What are you smiling at?”

“It feels good.” Taehyung nods “Being on the podium with a competition feels good.”

 

 

 

 

 

“He doesn't want to see you.”

Jin's voice comes from the phone put on speaker. Namjoon frowns and sends a worried look at Jungkook, who sits on the bed of his hotel room with Jimin by his side, Yoongi smoking on the balcony.

“Don't take it personally, guys, he doesn't want to see any of you. He's in a shitty mood.” Jin sighs from the other side of the phone “Basically, he overdid it, his ankle is a mess of inflamation and almost fracture, like, he was so close to it. He's been put on stop for the next month.”

“Ah, shit.” Jimin groans “He's gonna be so pissy about it.”

“Trust me, Jimin, he already is. Just a few minutes ago he threw a bottle of water at Hoseok's face.”

“What?” Namjoon looks at the phone “Why?”

“Hoseok suggested he should rest, Taehyung screamed KISS MY ASS, and then threw the bottle.”

Jungkook blinks “Is- Is Hoseok alright?”

“He's in a shit mood as well now.” a pause “I'm not gonna survive this.”

Yoongi comes back in the room, smelling of smoke and expensive tobacco “You sure you don't need any help? Namjoon could come and give you a hand.”

“Yeah!” Namjoon exclaims “I mean, I can keep Hoseok distracted whilst you take care of Taehyung or-”

“Okay, I don't wanna sound rude, but seeing you would probably convince me to jump from this window in front of me.” silence “And we're on the fifth floor.”

Namjoon rolls his eyes “This is why I don't want a relationship with you.”

“Can we not?” Jimin groans, taking the phone from Namjoon's hand and ignoring his shocked gasp “Are you sure Taehyung doesn't want to see any of us?”

He says this as he sends Jungkook a look.

“I'm sure.” Jin sighs, Jungkook notices how tired he sounds “Look, seriously, don't take it personally. Tae is just- not in a good place right now. Try to understand.”

“We do.” Jungkook says. But here's the thing, he really fucking doesn't.

They give their goodbyes, Jimin ends the phonecall and gives the phone back to Namjoon.

“Next time you grab my shit like that I'll kick your ass.” he grumbles. Behind him, Yoongi arches an eyebrow.

“The fuck did you just say to my fiancé?”

“Oh, shut up.” Namjoon stands up and pinches the bridge of his nose “I have an headache.”

Jimin rolls his shoulders once before he stands up as well “Let's go get fucking hammered. Now. Besides, we also have to celebrate our Kookie's first gold.”

Jungkook smiles a little. Sure, he's happy about gold. Hell, he's ecstatic. But still, he and Taehyung need to talk and they're sure as hell not gonna talk today, nor any other following day.

 

The rest of the night goes in a blur, drowned in laughter, booze, and a gold medal on his chest even if it looks ridiculous over his t-shirt.

 

 

 

 

 

LOS ANGELES

 

 

 

 

Three weeks pass, Jungkook has done nothing but train.

“You're a gold now.” Namjoon tells him “The moment you win a gold in seniors you can't allow yourself to be less than that.”

So Jungkook has trained, improves his routines, he's thinking of adding a quad somewhere, he's started even making his own choreographies for the first time.

Jimin is busy preparing for the next championship, preparing for the Olympics and preparing a wedding. Because, apparently, when Yoongi proposed to him with a goddamn onion ring he didn't mean it as a We'll get married when we want to, but more as a No, we're getting married and that's it.

“Funny thing is, he doesn't do shit.” Jimin tells him on the phone, Jungkook sprawled on his couch with a half eaten burger on his plate “Like, it's not as if he's doing something for this wedding. We need to go cake tasting and-”

“Jesus Christ, cake tasting.”

“Yeah, that's an actual thing that you have to do. But he keeps postponing it because, and I quote, I don't like sweet things anyways, just pick the one you like the most. No bitch, life don't work like that!” Jimin sighs “And the fucking wedding rings, don't make me think about those. Or the suits. Or the location. I- God, why did I say yes?”

“You love him, apparently.”

“I know that you-” Jimin pauses “Why am I even talking with you. It's not like you'll go cake tasting with me.”

Jungkook frowns “I can if you want me to.”

“Wait, really?”

“I like cakes.”

“I'm booking you a flight.”

Jungkook laughs, soon enough Jimin is chuckling as well on the other side of the phone. Jungkook looks at his burger, he's suddenly not that hungry anymore, so he pushes the plate aside.

“Have you heard from Taehyung?” he asks, Jimin stops laughing.

“Yeah, I did.”

“Oh.” Jungkook nods “He hasn't called me yet. Nor texted me.”

“I know. I scolded him for that.”

“Thank you.”

“You're welcome.” Jimin giggles “I think he'll call you soon enough, though. He's still feeling like shit, wants to be forgiven and all that.”

“He already apologized in his own way.”

“I guess he wants to use his words this time.” Jungkook can hear a smile in Jimin's voice “Don't worry, Kook, he'll come around.”

 

 

 

 

When Jimin said that, Jungkook didn't expect Taehyung to actually come to his house. Still, there he is, standing on his doorstep, fist still raised midair as if he was about to knock again on the door, staring with huge eyes at Jungkook.

“Hi.” he says, dropping his arm to his side.

Jungkook swallows “Hi.”

“Jimin gave me your address.”

“And you couldn't text me for it?”

Taehyung's lips fall open “Oh shit, fam, you're right.”

Jungkook bites back a smile “Fam.”

“I'm learning slang now.”

“Impressive.”

Taehyung nods then looks at his feet, playing with the hems of the sleeves of his shirt, red hair falling messily over his eyes.

“Do you-” Jungkook coughs “You wanna come in or-”

“I've never seen the video of my accident.” Taehyung looks up at him with his jaw clenched tight “The one when I broke my ankle, I've never seen it. It's on youtube. High definition and everything.”

Jungkook nods slowly “Do you wanna watch it now?”

“I think so.”

“Okay.” Jungkook steps aside “Come in.”

 

 

Jungkook puts his laptop on the coffee table in front of the couch, Taehyung is already sitting there with his legs crossed and elbows perched on his knees. He took off his shoes and he's wearing odd socks. With a weird cartoon character on one, Jungkook doesn't want to know.

He starts typing on the keyboard then he stops “Wait, what do I even search?”

“Try Kim Taehyung's accident 2016 or something.”

Jungkook does and, sure enough, the first result is a video of Taehyung during the routine, the one of his fall.

“Look, are you sure-”

“Sure, positive, go for it.”

“Okay.” Jungkook clicks on the video and sits back on the couch.

The first minute is Taehyung's performance, jumps perfect and overall a great routine.

“You had brown hair.”

“I looked cute as fuck.” Taehyung says, eyes fixed on the screen “Maybe I should dye them brown again.”

“I like your red hair.”

Taehyung hums “Maybe I'll keep it, then. Ah, here I go in a second.”

In the video, Taehyung sets his jump, quad Salchow, something goes wrong as he spins, axis thrown off, the quad turns into a double and the landing is- it's just painful to watch. His ankle twists almost in a snap, Taehyung falls on the ice on his stomach.

Jungkook dares a glance at Taehyung but the red haired is just looking at the screen with a flat expression.

Jungkook looks back at the video then, Taehyung is slowly trying to stand up but the moment he tries to put any weight on his ankle he's screaming so loud it can be heard over the music. Jungkook flinches, Taehyung falls back down and grabs at his leg, chest heaving and face twisted in pain, he starts sobbing, the music stops and soon enough there are paramedics rushing to him.

The video ends, Jungkook keeps staring at the screen where suggestions of other videos pop up.

“I've always been curious as to what kind of face I made that day.” Taehyung says, breaking the silence “It really hurt, but I mostly screamed out of fear.”

“Tae-”

“Oh, look!” Taehyung exclaims suddenly “There's the video of the accident of this year's Four CCs, I wanna see it.”

“What? No, wait-”

“Did you see it already?”

Jungkook grimaces “I did, but seriously don't-”

“Too late.” he clicks on the video and Jungkook groans, burying his face in a pillow.

In the video Yong hits Taehyung hard, slamming him on the ice, then a few seconds after Jungkook appears, kneeling down next to him.

“Look at your face.” Taehyung says with a soft smile playing on his lips “You look so fucking scared.”

“I was, you idiot.” Jungkook murmurs “I was terrified.”

“I know.” Taehyung pauses the video and lays more comfortably his back on the couch, turning his head around to look at him “I know you were.”

Jungkook sits in Taehyung's same position “Yong can't participate in any competition for, what, a full season?”

“Yeah, the ISU was pissed.” Taehyung grabs a pillow and puts it on his lap “We should talk.”

“Yeah, we should.”

Taehyung nods “I'm sorry, Jungkook. For what I said.”

Jungkook shakes his head “I can't- look, I was mad as hell that night, but I can't force you to love me back or something. It doesn't work like that, it makes no sense to be angry at you for something you can't choose, so-”

“No, that's the point.” Taehyung sighs deep “I lied. That night, I lied.”

There's a flare of hope that bursts in Jungkook's chest and spreads in his entire body, skin almost tingling with it, but he's quick to kill it. It's always like this with Taehyung, it's rays of hope just before a cloud decides to stop right in front of them, so why would this time be any different.

Taehyung seems to sense that. Carefully, he brushes his fingers with Jungkook's own.

“I mean it.”

“Do you?”

“I-” Taehyung rolls his eyes “I'm not so good with words, so I'll try to- Ah, fuck it. I told you, I've never been scared of the landing. Not since the accident, not once. And that's because I'm alone but then you showed up and I couldn't fucking stand you.”

“Likewise, smartass.”

“I still can't stand you sometimes.”

“You're so bad at this.”

“But-” Taehyung worries his bottom lip, eyes darting from Jungkook's face down to where their hands are touching “But I'm afraid of the landing if it's with you.”

Jungkook frowns, he tries to understand what exactly Taehyung is trying to tell him, but he can't grasp anything from his face except how blatantly nervous and scared Taehyung is right now.

“Spell that out again for me.” Jungkook tries.

“I'm not afraid of jumping when I'm alone, but I'm afraid of the landing if I jump with you.” Taehyung says again, he gulps hard and looks at him with wide eyes “Because it's my heart that could break this time.”

And Jungkook gets it now, he truly does. Because Taehyung might not be good with words, but he's great with concepts and stories, so he understands now. That this is Taehyung telling him he loves him.

“That was cheesy.” Taehyung says, laughing awkwardly “Sorry.”

“I liked it.” Jungkook grins “And I guess we'll have to be careful about your heart breaking.”

Finally, Taehyung smiles as well, relief flooding on his features and cheeks dusted with pink “I guess so.”

“And maybe we should do this properly. Like, maybe an actual date first.”

“Maybe, yes.”

“And we take it slow.”

“I'd like that a lot.”

“And we'll fight on who pays the bill and all that.”

“Great.”

“I won't even kiss you after the first date.”

“Such traditions must be respected.” Taehyung licks his lips and the teasing in his eyes is back “But we're not on a date now, so-” He slowly pushes the pillow away and leans in until his nose is brushing with Jungkook's “So, you know, we could kiss right now.”

Jungkook grins “We could.”

Taehyung plants a chaste kiss to his lips “And then you'll take me out for dinner.”

“I can do that.” Jungkook kisses him this time, Taehyung smiling like a child.

“And then you can ask me if I want to come up at your place?”

Jungkook grips Taehyung's wrist and pulls him closer, still leaving small kisses on his lips, feeling stupidly in love “I'll ask you if you want coffee and all that cliché stuff.”

 

 

It turns out, kissing Taehyung like this, with their feelings laid bare, it's way better. It's wonderful. Holding him like this is wonderful, having Taehyung call his name over and over again when they're on the bed is wonderful.

It's safe. It feels safe. It feels like a jump that is gonna land well.

 

 

“Jagi is short for jagiya.” Taehyung tells him later, during the night, stroking his air.

“What does it mean?” Jungkook asks, a hand on Taehyung's hip, thumb drawing circles on the skin.

“Jagiya means self.” Taehyung grins at him “I'm calling you as you are me. A part of myself.”

“That's so cheesy.” Jungkook chuckles “I love it.”

 

 

 

 

 

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS 2018, MILAN

 

 

 

 

 

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS 2018, MILAN

 

 

 

“People are expecting a lot from you after your gold at the Four Continents. Do you feel pressured?”

Jungkook hums, trying to ignore the camera that is too close to his face, pop music loud in the arena “I guess pressure is impossible to avoid, but I feel good. I'll give a good performance, do my best as always.”

“You'll go against Jimin Park, he's been World's champion for two years in a row.”

“We have a bet, actually, he and I. On who will break the World's record. I bet on me.”

The interviewer laughs “And who did Park bet on?”

“Himself.”

“Of course he did. Well, then, can you tell us if-”

Suddenly there's a flash of red hair, Taehyung jumping in front of the camera, winking at it, he turns around and plants a kiss on Jungkook's lips, then another, then he runs away laughing like a maniac.

The interviewer looks astonished, Jungkook clears his throat and presses his lips together.

“What-” the man laughs “What was that? Care to explain?”

“That?” Jungkook grins “I call it healthy competition.”