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One Taught Me Love

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The house has been gutted, strategically pulled apart and packed away into boxes sent miles away and Jimin looked over it all with blank detachment. He had about two hours before the taxi was set to arrive and the thought of finally leaving this place would have filled him with dread had he not been numbed by the last month or so. Instead his fingers twitched against the handle of the small suitcase at his side, the minuscule movement speaking volumes for the tension rolling just under the surface.

He stood in the living room, looking over at the bookcase and mantle, at the gaps in its system. Jimin’s books and vinyls had already been sent off to Daegu and the picture frames and albums lay in ashes at the back of the garden. Jimin had gotten rid of them three days ago in a fit of rage, grief morphing into fierce resentment and an itch to destroy. The pretty mantle and luxurious home making him sick, the facade of happiness bringing bitter tears to his eyes as he ripped it apart, blood under his nails as he clawed at the frames mounted onto the wall, broken glass under his feet, biting into his slippers as he tore up photographs. He ignored the pain searing through his sides, his ribs still bruised, legs still sore, left arm sweaty and itchy and tender under his cast as he ripped page after page out of once beloved albums before giving up and piling them all into the trash, dragging them out into the garden and setting them aflame.

When the cleaning staff arrived the next morning, they were understandably concerned but after almost four years of employment under Jimin’s boyfriend they had learned not to question things. Don't falter, just clean the house. Ignore the bitter scent of a distressed omega, the terrifying taste of an alphas rage, keep your head down, ignore the bruises.

Jimin never spoke much to the cleaning staff, but that day he approached the head housekeeper- Soomin- an elderly woman with a stern look and a strong hand. She was firm but kind, was actually the first person to ever speak up about the relationship between her boss and his omega. She had approached Jimin halfway into her first year of service, silently offering support Jimin had snobbishly refused.

Her concern was just proof that his life was nowhere near the domestic bliss he had always dreamed of. He hated that she could see through the flimsy vale of money and luxury, embarrassed to admit that he had become one of those sad little kept omegas. So he had lashed out at her, warning her to watch where she stepped, keep her nose out of business that didn’t concern her and focus on her staff.

But years later, he was the one to approach her, pulling her aside, up into the empty office. The dominant smell of alpha had faded since the man had headed back to his home state in America a week ago. A ‘business trip’, he claimed, but Jimin knew the truth. He didn’t care. The alpha scent had faded, but Jimin’s stomach still rolled uncomfortably. Soomin’s nose wrinkled at the stale scent, her expression unimpressed, jaw locked to stop herself from making any comments.

She knew exactly what had happened, it had only been a little over a month since her and her team had mopped blood and glass off the floor to the sound of an ambulance siren driving away. A little over a month and the alpha had abandoned his omega in the midst of his grief. Not that he was ever any support in the first place.

The young omega in front of her still sported hues of blue and purple on his face, the colours peeking through the collar of his stretched out sweater. One arm, still tight in its cast lay limp at his side while the other went up to settle over his now flat stomach. Jimin seemed to have caught on to the subconscious act and he jerked, changing course last minute, hand awkwardly slipping into the pocket of his sweatpants and he looked up somewhere over Soomin’s shoulder.

He cleared his throat, taking a moment to gather his wits. Soomin regarded him with kind eyes, waiting patiently for him to speak.

“I need to leave,” The words escaped his lips caught between a whisper and a sob and he pulled back a moment, blinking back the wetness in his eyes and clearing his throat once more, “I need to leave but I don’t know how. I- I've never had to do any of this alone I just-" a deep breath, “I just need your help.”

Jimin couldn't fight the heat rushing up to his cheeks, he felt so pathetic, so useless. Growing up he never had to worry about anything. Never had to think about job seeking or house seeking or rent or loans or where his next meal would come from. That didn’t change when he met Alexander. The foreign Alpha brought with him excitement and status and money. A young heir from America , come to oversee and manage the Korean branch of his fathers manufacturing company. He was taller then most alphas he knew, richer, stronger more powerful. A sturdy partner and potential mate and he wanted Jimin.

Jimin was young and stupid but he knew it was a choice between someone he loved and someone his parents had promised him to. And Jimin was so lost in Alex, so swept up in this beautiful alpha that he chose for himself. And when his parents objected, Jimin didn't hesitate to run away with him.

At fifteen years old all he wanted was to be free to chose for himself.

None of it mattered though. He slipped out from under the thumb of his parents only to get caught under the alphas.

He didn't even know where to begin when it came to finding a place for himself. Thankfully, Soomin had all the wisdom of someone who’d lived through a lot. Life had taken her in and spat her out at the tail end of forty and she was stronger and wiser and kinder for it. She took one look at the young omega before her. He was scared and lost and so broken, but he was finally willing to move on and start building a life for himself.

“I have a friend, up in Daegu-"

And that was that.

Soomin worked fast. Her efficiency seemed to reflect in everything she did, be it housekeeping or organizing for Jimin to have his own apartment in the heart of Daegu's city. Her friend worked as a property manager for a number of complexes around the city and was able to scrounge up a small place an hour or so out from the city center. She had sent pictures once things had started to cement themselves but Jimin barely looked them over in his haste to get things going. Alexander would be back in only a few short weeks and Jimin wanted to be gone long before that happened.

Jimin had taken to making large cash withdrawals from the bank every other day, not having to worry about raising any suspicion considering Alex had always allowed Jimin to spend what he wanted so long as he continued to do as he was told. Enabling the young omega to indulge was a superficial way to compensate for everything he had taken from Jimin, and it was something Jimin was grateful to now more than ever.

Using the alpha’s money to pay for his new apartment left a bitter taste in his mouth but he had no other choice. He was never allowed to get a real job and teaching ballet to children was more of a passion project than a source of a half substantial wage. With no regular income of his own, he had nothing else to rely on.

Jimin had paid for the deposit in cash, Soomin making the trip up to Daegu herself in order to finalize the deal and from that moment on things began to pick up momentum. Soomin helped Jimin open up his own account linked under his new address, slowly making cash deposits to build up enough to get him by until he was able to find a job of his own.

All of Jimin’s possessions were packed away neatly and discreetly into the back of the cleaning company van -Jimin refused to allow any sort of moving truck anywhere near the house where his neighbors could see- before long, Soomin had collected all of his things, storing them in her own home until they were finally ready to send it all up to Daegu where her friend had agreed to move them into his apartment for him.

And finally, Jimin was ready to leave.

Alexander would be home in just a few days, and Jimin would be long gone by then.

Two hours till the taxi was set to pick him up and take him to the train station.

Jimin gave the living room one final look, taking a moment to catalogue the memories he had made there. The couch where he would snuggle up to Alex to watch TV- sometimes the alpha would run his fingers through Jimin's hair and he would practically purr in content, soaking up every second of affection he could get, he was so thirsty for it.

He remembered the first heat he had spent with him. Alex had pushed back all the furniture in the living room and allowed Jimin to use every pillow and blanket and shirt he could find to build his nest. Jimin had been so nervous, having just turned sixteen he had never spent his heat with anyone before. Looking back he couldn't remember much about that week but he knew it had been good, it had been during the start of their second year together, they had been living together for only a couple of weeks before the heat had settled and it was finally looking like Jimin was getting what he wanted in life.

Jimin couldn't help the bitter smile that pulled at the corner of his lips. He was so naive, so stupidly trusting and open and sweet on his alpha. Despite everything he was so desperately in love he didn’t know how to contain it. He would never stop doing whatever he could to make him happy.

Stupid.

Before he could stop himself, Jimin found his legs carrying him steadily through the house. The rooms were open and airy. Modern and beautiful. The kitchen was large, neatly squared off with an island and bar. He remembered being bent over those marble countertops countless times, the polished rock cool on his cheek as his head was held down against it.

The kitchen was also the place where Alex had struck him for the first time, his open palm meeting his cheek in a stinging collision after Jimin had spoken to him with a tad bit more attitude then what was acceptable.

Jimin moved past the kitchen, making his way up the stairs and steadily past the master bedroom. He hadn't slept in there since Alex had left. The bedroom held too much in its wall's, a confusing mix of some of his happiest moments and darkest times. The bedroom was where he had broken the news of their future family, eyes wet with happy tears as he woke Alex up with a kiss, giggling as the alpha flipped him over so that he lay cushioned against the pillows. Stupidly, Jimin thought that the news would be enough to fix things, thought that maybe now he could finally feel fulfilled in a relationship he cherished so much.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

The bedroom remained shut as Jimin walked past it with only a moment's hesitation. It was only then that he realised where exactly his body was carrying him. His heart subconsciously drawn to the pale blue door at the end of the hallway. This was a door he had refused to even look at since returning from the hospital. He regarded it now, breath caught in his lungs as his eyes misted over. The chalkboard plaque he had mounted on the door remained empty, waiting for a name that would never come and the reminder was enough to draw a strangled sob from Jimin's lips as his arms came up to wrap around his flat stomach. His body doubled over, weighed down by the heavy wave of guilt that had crashed into him all at once. A solid wall of regret and longing that pushed him to twist at the handle, the door falling open with a quiet creak, the frame making a soft whisper as it dragged against the plush carpet beneath it.

The room was lit only by the gentle push of the early morning sun, mostly empty save for the large bassinet pushed up against the wall. It was padded with big plush cushions on all sides, pale eggshell blue ribbons adorned its sides some of them peeking through the canopy draped over the head of the basket. The sight of it tugged at the worn strings of Jimin's heart, he had had it custom built, big enough so that he could comfortably settle into it himself and that was precisely what he did.

Slowly, achingly, he climbed into the basket, ignoring the dull pain in his side and he settled himself comfortably on top of the soft bedding. A small white plush rabbit sat sweetly in the middle, toppling over at the disturbance of Jimin's weight on the mattress. Silently, he drew it close to his chest, burying his face into it soft fur as he breathed in the still new scent of a toy yet to be handled.

It’s fur grew damp fairly quickly as Jimin laid there.

The minutes ticked by as Jimin took his time to breath in everything this room had promised for him. He never got to finish it, the chest of draws he had chosen remained in boxes, packed flat against the wall alongside the small wardrobe and storage tower and bags of toys and blankets and towels. The bassinet he lay in was really the only thing he'd gotten the chance to finish, its opulence near haunting in the empty room around it.

What felt like an eternity later, Jimin heard his phone go off on the other side of the silent house, signalling the arrival of the taxi and Jimin's freedom. Suddenly things seemed infinitely more terrifying than it did moments ago, as Jimin wiped at the wetness on his cheeks and lashes, scrambling out of the cot with a racing heart.

He stood on the precipice of something totally new, the freedom and independence a tantalizing yet daunting reality. He had never even been to Daegu before, not to mention living there alone. An omega with no family, no partner, no friends. He was truly alone, for the first time in his life there was no one to dictate what to do or wear or say or think.

Excitement and dread pulled at his guts, a nauseating amalgamation of regret and fear and hope tightening around his heart as he moved to leave the half empty room behind. He stopped at the door for a moment, turning around on a whim and snatching the tear damp bunny from the cot before hurrying out the door. Through the hallway, past the bedroom, out of the kitchen and into the living room where he grabbed his phone and suitcase.

One final breath. One final look.

He was out.

 

~

 

Getting onto the correct platform took more energy than Jimin had to spare. Never in his life had he ever experienced so much chaos. Everywhere he looked there were people rushing about one way or another and he felt swallowed up by the sea of movement. It seemed like he was the only one struggling, a single confused speck lost behind determined strides and the mindless direction of people with places to be. The overhead sound of announcements and information cut through the standard buzz of a public space.

Jimin squeezed past a group of young omegas. Boys and girls dressed up pretty for a day out, they were loud, boisterous in a way Jimin was never allowed to be. One of the younger boys, surrounded by his giggling friends, was being nudged as he attempted to be subtle with the way he was eyeing an older alpha female a few feet away from the group. His cheeks flushed with embarrassment as his friends continued to tease him. They had an air of giddy excitement around them; all of them in that beginning stage of their young adult life.

This was more than likely one of their first times out with friends away from the supervising eyes of their parents, and the taste of freedom was still new on their tongues. The alpha caught the boy's eyes, giving him a wink and a smug grin as the group erupted into giggles. Everyone else on the platform looked on with fond amusement, they could all tell that nothing would come of the brief flirtation. Almost as though the mated scent of the alpha wasn't obvious enough, the ring on her finger did nothing more than completing the picture. She was simply humoring the boy, both parties fully aware that this was a passing fancy on his part. Harmless fun.

Jimin looked on, a fond upwards tug to his lips and a bitter pang at his heart. He allowed himself a moment to lament his sheltered but stifling upbringing. Perhaps, if he were allowed to make friends and socialize with others his age he wouldn't have latched onto the first Alpha to wave freedom in his face.

He sighed. None of it really mattered anymore. He was here now, on a bustling platform, surrounded by people who couldn’t care less about what he was doing and where he was going. What a refreshing change.

No one here cared.

The thought, while simple enough, was somewhat of a revelation. It was almost hilarious, how light he suddenly felt. A massive weight he wasn’t even aware of slipped from his shoulders and he felt himself grow two sizes larger. He was doing something for himself. He had a home up in Daegu waiting for him, a home and a new life and he just had to get there.

One look at the arrivals screen told him that the train was only minutes away. He'd never been alone on a train before, never anything less then first class carriages and he'd certainly never traveled outside of Seoul alone. He had left the house no more then two hours ago and already he was flushed with nerves and excitement, mind buzzing with all the other new things he would be experiencing.

He looked back over the the young group. Their lives only just beginning, stretching out before them with infinite possibilities. Suddenly he felt as giddy as they seemed, he didn't feel so alien anymore. He shared space on this platform with them, anticipating adventure and a new phase of his life.

He'd cook and not have to worry about being backhanded because it was too spicy. He'd work and have his own money and wouldn't have to fall to his knees and ‘be grateful’. Maybe he'll even make a friend, someone kind and sweet, someone that will love him without expecting anything in return. Someone he could talk to when things got hard. He hadn't had any kind of emotional support in a long time. Alex used to be that for him. He used to wait for Jimin on the street corner while Jimin would sneak out of his house; climbing out of his window and running through his garden and down the street into his arms, basking in his attention. He used to listen to Jimin talk for hours sometimes, letting him rant on and on about the latest family drama.

Maybe he could find that in someone kinder. Just one friend that was all he wanted, so much his heart physically ached for it.

He wasn't naive though, not anymore. He didn't allow himself for a second to think that everything would be perfect and easy from here. He knew making friends wasn’t easy, knew he couldn’t blindly trust the first person to show him kindness. He knew his stolen money would only last so long. Knew he would have to find a job as soon as possible. Knew that creating a home took much more than paying a deposit and mailing over some boxes. Things would be hard but at least he wouldn't have to worry about anyone but himself. He was single and free. Unbound. Unmated. Utterly alone.

His awareness seemed to drift for a moment, settling on his stomach. The scar across his abdomen itching. This was something that happened fairly often in the past few weeks. Jimin would suddenly become hyper aware of his own body and consciousness. it was almost as though his mind was still struggling to accept the fact that he was once again alone in his existence. The only one inhabiting his body was himself, no longer fostering new life.

This hyper awareness always left him feeling big. Big and empty, as though his own consciousness was no longer enough to fill the shell of his body. There was a chasm inside of him, a desperate hollow need to reclaim what was taken from him and his heart and emotions refused to acknowledge his rational mind. As difficult as it was to accept, this was a good thing. He was alone and that was good, that was practical, but heaven forbid his heart stopped aching for everything that child could have been.

The train pulled into the station with a jarring squeal, ripping him from his spiral and he couldn't have been more grateful for the hiss of the doors opening, the sound a cue for the platform to awaken into movement, people making their way off the train only to be replaced instantly by others rushing to take their place.

Jimin took a breath, squared his shoulders and pushed forward.

 

~

 

The apartment building was unlike anything he had ever seen before.

Distantly he could hear the taxi pulling away from the curb as he stood there gaping at his new home. The gated entrance was rusted to an inch of its life, one half hanging precariously onto its last intact hinge. It looked as though many years had passed since the gate offered any security to the complex. The only use it had right now was to simply preface the state of the area behind it. The grass was just as unkempt, overgrown and riddled with dandelions and seed heads. The weeds were strong and dominant, encroaching on the stone pathway to the main entrance.

The walls at least had some form of maintenance, though the thin cream paint did little to hide the bold and bright graffiti beneath it. There was no one around at the moment and Jimin was not ashamed to admit he was grateful for it. Suddenly his cream cashmere sweater and wool wrap coat didn't feel as casual as it did in the middle of his old living room back in Seoul. Jimin looked expensive and this was exactly the type of place he had been raised to fear.

Despite everything Jimin had lived through, financial stability had never been something he'd ever had to worry about. He grew up in a luxury family home only to run away and move into his boyfriend's American style new build. While those places had their own soul destroying issues, his new home faced him with fears he had never had to face before. Still, he was determined not to let this phase him. He had lived through more than weeds and graffiti and a rusty gate wasn't going to scare him away.

That being said, he tightened his grip on his bag, putting the strap securely across his chest as opposed to hanging on his shoulder. He gripped the single small key to his apartment in one hand and the handle of his suitcase in the other, stealing a sharp breath in and letting it out slow as he made his way to the entrance.

The door opened with a swipe of the electronic fob attached to his apartment key and Jimin was soothed somewhat by the heavy and sturdy weight of the main door. The main foyer was as small as he had expected, one wall taken up with a tower of small post boxes, on instinct he looked for which one was now his; E-06. For some strange reason, just looking at the empty mailbox sent an odd wave of possessive joy through him. That was his box. This place was cold and a little bit scary but it was his and that was enough.

With a small smile he turned away to face the elevator on the adjacent wall. Luckily it was sitting ready for him on the ground floor and with a quick press of the buttons he was on his way steadily to the fifth floor, not a single stop on the way.

But of course, as his luck would have it, he couldn't possibly have a clear run up to his apartment. No. Instead, as soon as the doors of the elevator rattled open, Jimin was met with the unmistakable smell of an agitated alpha and Jimin was instantly put on edge, his own body hesitantly putting out soothing pheromones as a response. Slowly he inched his way out of the elevator. His apartment was number six. Not far, just around that corner and six doors in. He could do it.

Head down, he made his way around and into the main hallway, looking up briefly to spot the alpha in question pacing in front of... yup, that was apartment number five. Of course. At this point, it would have been much too obvious to turn back the way he had come, the alpha would have for sure seen him turn the corner. Besides, Jimin had nowhere else to go and he refused to let an upset alpha have him running back with his tail between his legs. No. Not anymore.

Still, he swapped the suitcase over to the hand on the opposite side of the alpha, his other hand tightening subconsciously around his key in a sad attempt to ground himself as he attempted to walk steadily passed the man that had since stopped his pacing. As he grew closer to him, Jimin's body instinctively curled into itself as he sensed his heavy gaze on him.

Just as he passed, the alpha stepped forward into his way with an obnoxious 'Boo!' startling him so much that he lept back with a yelp, heart in his throat, racing in an all too familiar rush of 'get away get away get away'. He kept his gaze down at the mans dirty leather boots, practically trained never to look an alpha in the eye. The man in questioned scoffed, stepping back out of the way and Jimin looked up quick enough to notice the angry twist in his otherwise delicate features and the roll of his dark, cat like eyes. He ran one hand through his messy hair, letting out a put upon sigh.

"Go ahead little omega. I don't want your shit and I ain't gonna hurt you," Jimin gave him a jerky nod, hurrying over to his door and fumbling with his key. He could just about make out an incredulous laugh behind him over the roaring of blood in his ears. "Yeah, and it's nice to fucking meet you, neighbor."

"Yeah, nice to meet you." he mumbled, pushing his way into his apartment and slamming the door shut behind him. He didn't even think about it before he was locking his door from the inside and sliding the measly looking door chain into place.

Well, that could have gone much better.

Suddenly, nervous excitement had given way to simple nerves and an inexplicable need to crawl into bed and cry. Of course his neighbor would be an alpha with a bad temper, how could Jimin have ever hoped to have anything work out for him. If ever there was a time to break down it would have been now. And if Jimin was the same man he had been a couple of months ago he would have done so. But instead, he steeled himself with a deep breath, reminding himself that just a few weeks ago, his ribs were so bruised that even his breathing was difficult. He healed and he moved passed it all. This was nothing. So what, his new neighbor was mean to him? Jimin had faced meaner. If only his heart could catch up with his brain and stop trying to suffocate him. Jimin shook his head in an attempt to clear the oppressive buzzing in his ears, ignoring his palpitations in order to scope out his new living space.

Granted, there wasn't a whole lot to take in.

The apartment was as tiny as the exterior of the complex suggested it would be. The door to his left rested open enough for him to make out what must have been the main bedroom, meaning that the door opposite to it was the bathroom. Straight ahead was the living room and kitchen; A small fridge, hob and sink taking up one wall, cut off by a small beige couch squaring off what was meant to be the living room section of the apartment. A small coffee table sat in front of it, its surface covered by the boxes of things Jimin had sent over in advance. More boxes lined the far wall, next to an empty TV stand and a small bookshelf.

While the apartment was mostly empty and nowhere near as attractive or cozy looking as what he was accustomed to, Jimin couldn't help but be grateful for the little furnishings he did have. Soomin and her friend had worked hard trying to set the apartment up to be as comfortable as possible and Jimin didn't even need to look to know there were a few pantry essentials stocked up in the kitchen as well as some kimchi and eggs in the fridge. He sent quiet thanks her way, infinitely grateful for everything Soomin had done for him.

He was ashamed to admit that he had never been the kindest to her. His ego had taken a massive blow after she had approached him the first time. Who was this old woman to assume she could offer Jimin anything he didn't already have? How dare she be so presumptuous as to doubt Jimin's ability to keep his alpha happy? These thoughts did nothing to endear Jimin to his housemaid and so he played up his role of the spoiled rich omega of the household. He was so unbelievably lucky that Soomin was so quick to forgive him for it. This home, the chance to create a new life for himself, was only possible because of her and her friend- Jinae, who had promised to come visit him after allowing him a few days to settle in.

The thought alone was enough to soothe his heart. He wasn't totally alone, he supposed. All he had to do was pick himself up and get going. He had boxes to unpack and a apartment to explore and none of it would get done if he spent the day crying in bed because of a rude neighbor. He didn't want to be that scared omega ever again, he came here to build a life for himself and that began with organizing his new home.

He started with the biggest box of the lot, sat off to the side under the small window. Shrugging off his coat, he threw it unceremoniously onto the couch, twisting the blinds open to let in the early afternoon sun before gripping the box and beginning to slide it across the hardwood floor out into the hallway and into his new bedroom.

The room was just as sparse and the living room, but Jimin was pleased to see that he was blessed with a cozy looking double bed and a decently sized wardrobe; a small chest of draws was pushed up against the farthest wall, a mirror propped up on top of it. No better place to start, he supposed as he began to tear off the tape sealing the box.

It took him the better part of three hours to unpack and organize everything in the bedroom but by the end of it he was pleased with what he had achieved. His wardrobe and draws were now modestly full and his bed had been made up to be as cozy as possible. He had layered up the bed with dozens of pillows and a couple of blankets he used for nesting. While his heat was weeks away, he knew that sleep would be impossible without the emotional safety net of a warm nest and familiar scents. Watching the room come together filled him with so much pride. It wasn't even half the size of his old room and the carpet looked as though it was curling away from the corners but it was plush and warm under his toes and he felt safe and secure in the small space that was utterly his own.

 

~

 

The days that followed saw Jimin slowly bringing his new home up to a state that he was happy with. Admittedly, he used unpacking and the pile of instant noodles in his kitchen to avoid leaving his apartment for as long as possible, but he couldn't deny that the isolation and lack of fresh air was beginning to take its toll on him.

He was used to staying at home, sometimes weeks at a time whenever Alex decided to put him on house arrest... but even then, he had the alpha and the cleaning staff to break up the monotony of his own company. That was precisely why his heart leaped for joy the moment he heard a knock on his door.

Jinae, the property manager and a close friend of Soomin's, had promised to drop by at some point in order to formally introduce herself and welcome him to Daegu. They had spoken a couple of times over the phone and through email when finalizing things before Jimin's move, but this would be the very first time they would be seeing each other in person. He gave a quick look through the peephole in his door to confirm that it was indeed her, before pulling the door open, warm smile and greeting at the ready.

The older alpha came bustling over the threshold, arms filled with bags and a small cactus in hand. She quickly deposited them on the coffee table before turning to finally look at the bewildered omega.

"Oh, it's so lovely to finally meet you!" She cooed,coming up to Jimin and pinching both cheeks in her hands. "Aren't you just precious." Jimin couldn't help but let out a nervous laugh, cheeks flushed as she continued to fuss over him.

"Yes, it's nice to see you, Jinae-sshi"

"Oh enough with that, call me noona." She fixed him with a look, face stern as she continued, "And if you ever so much as utter the word ajumma around me, you are done for."

Jimin could do nothing but nod his head in understanding. Not for one minute, through any of their phone conversations or emails did Jimin ever get the picture of her being as forward as she was. She was pretty much the same age as Soomin, and he had assumed her personality was tied just as closely. It seemed he couldn't have been more wrong; where Soomin was stern and quiet in demeanor and odd display of affection, Jinae was the direct opposite.

She grabbed Jimin delicately by the wrists, dragging him with her so that they both ended up on the couch facing each other.

"So, tell me sweetheart, are you settling in okay?"

"Yes, thank you! it's all a bit new but... I think i'm happy with the way everything has turned out" he settled further into the couch, pulling one of the cushions into his lap as he looked at her with a gentle smile, "Thank you so much for helping me, noona. I-I don't think you realize just how much all of this means to me."

Jinae tittered, moving to once again take Jimin's hand in her own, "There in absolutely no need to thank me sweetie." the hold she had on his hand was gentle, thumb tracing soothing circles as she looked him in the eye, "I don't know the full story but I know that you've lost so much. I'm sorry that your alpha failed you so terribly, but it seems that's all alphas are good for."

Jimin's eyes had misted over but he didn't cry, instead he allowed his emotions and Jinae's words to wash over him, pass him like a wave and leaving him heavier for it, but still, a passing wave was better than drowning.

"Well, you're unlike any alpha I've ever met."

"Oh sweetie, that's because there isn't a single person on earth that can hold a candle to me."

Her statement pulled an incredulous laugh out of him and he looked at her with a sense of fondness he couldn't remember feeling towards anyone before. It was so pure and free from any expectation. Jinae was only the slightest bit more familiar then a stranger on the street and yet, she had spent almost a month organizing things in order to help an omega she had never even met before.

She chuckled alongside him, freeing his hand and leaning back against the couch, mirroring Jimin with her knees up to her chest and her hands fiddling with the tassels of a the blanket draped over the back of the couch.

"So, have you explored much of the neighborhood yet?"

"Not yet..." He admitted sheepishly, "I've only just about finished unpacking."

"That's nothing to worry about, you have plenty of time for that. I thought this apartment was perfect for you since it's so close to all the main bus lines. It'll be simple as syrup to find yourself around the city."

Jimin nodded, taking it all in and trying his best to come to terms with the fact that Daegu was his city now, and he had an expectation to go about and familiarize himself with it. Despite living his entire life in Seoul he couldn't say he ever truly knew it, all he had ever seen of it was the luxury places he had to get dressed up and pretty for. The idea of having to set out and live in the day to day of working class Daegu was daunting to say the least.

"And what about the apartment itself? I know it's not exactly what you're used to but I chose this place because it will be easier for you to maintain and afford once you start working."

"No it's absolutely perfect I swear. It's only me, I don't really need much space." for now he didn't even want to think about the idea of finding a job. Leaving the apartment and actually getting to grips with life here was the only challenge he felt prepared to face. As of now, he had enough of Alex's money stashed away to last him a good few months as long as he was careful. "Although... I don't know if this is anything you can help me with but, I can't seem to open the window in my bedroom at all. It's not a big deal but- I like to have it open some nights. The noise helps me sleep." he rubbed the back of his neck awkwardly, still not knowing quite where he stood in terms of asking for things.

Jinae hummed in contemplation. "To be fair, this apartment had been vacant for a while before you, and we haven't really done any maintenance in just as long... I suppose I could ask Yoongi to come over and have a look at it for you."

"Yoongi?"

At this, she fixed him with a sly grin, the type of look you would expect to see on the face of a coquettish teen rather than a woman north of forty. "You're neighbor, Min Yoongi," she wiggled her eyebrows, "Short, dark and handsome alpha. I'm sure you've seen him skulking about by now."

"Apartment five?" He asked hesitantly, feeling bewildered as Jinae nodded in confirmation, "Y-yeah, we've met actually. Briefly."

"Oh isn't he just a charmer, I'll tell you what, I would marry him off to my daughter in a heartbeat if I could."

Charming? That was not a word Jimin would use to describe Apartment Five Yoongi. Rude, Obnoxious and terrifying were words he found to be much more fitting.

"Well, It seems he's made quite an impression on you." Jimin laughed thinly, hoping it masked his disbelief.

"Oh yes, he really is a good one. Looks after us all pretty well, never met a handyman more handy then him. I tell ya, he'll have your window fixed before you know it." Jinae began, her words carrying the weight of affection Jimin would never had associated with the alpha. "He pretty much handles all the repairs around here. Of course I could hire a company we have on retainer, but, Id much rather pay him considering he has his little one to watch out for."

"He has a pup?"

Jimin couldn't fathom it. He couldn't recall the alpha having anything in his scent indicating a mate, and he certainly couldn't imagine any alpha, let alone one like him, taking responsibility over an illegitimate or accidental pup.

"Not biologically, but in all the ways that actually mean anything." There was that fondness again. It was written in every twitch in her features- her smile soft and eyes gentle. "I remember coming to check in on the building, and out of the blue he has a little alpha pup strapped to his chest as he's fixing his bike out front. Turned out, he had found the little one a week ago, half frozen to death off the side of the Geumho River!" She throws her hands up in barely concealed outrage, and the image of a pup, abandoned to death in such a way brings tears springing freely to his eyes. His mind couldn't even begin to deal with the idea of life being disregarded so cruelly. His hand tenses against his stomach, and its a battle in and of itself to bring himself to tune back into Jinae's story. "It's been a good few years since then and that pup has grown up to be just as charming as his father. When I say that cheeky bun has everyone in this complex smitten. I mean smitten. Really, I couldn't have given you better neighbors even if I tried."

Oh.

Well it would seem that there was a lot more to his grumpy neighbor then Jimin had ever really cared to think about.

 

~

 

Since Jinae's visit Jimin couldn't stop thinking about his neighbor. According to her he was endlessly charming and she had spent the better half of an hour telling Jimin about the time he had attempted to single handedly restore the local playground for his son. While she claimed that he got close, it turned out that the place had inevitably become a hot spot for gangs of teenagers skipping school to hang around, needless to say, the graffiti and questionable litter was enough to deter him. Still, the sentiment was enough to warm Jimin's opinion on the man.

As if on cue, Jimin could hear the sounds of a muffled chase coming from apartment five. It seemed as though the universe had made a special effort into highlighting what a presumptuous fool he had been as he listened to the sounds of excited shrieking and the unmistakable yipping of a small dog. Jimin hadn't been aware that pets were even allowed in the complex, but rest assured, the idea of Apartment Five Yoongi with a child and small dog was ten different shades of heartwarming.

It was currently nearing eight thirty in the evening and from what Jimin could gather, the pup next door was refusing stubbornly to get dressed after his bath.

"Come here you little mutt!" The only response Yoongi got was more shrieking and the unmistakable sound of tiny feet thundering across the floor in an attempt to flee. The shrieking quickly devolved into mindless giggles as Jimin assumed the pup had been caught, the soft timber of the alpha next door muffled just enough so that could not even hope to decipher what was being said.

Jimin had spent the first few nights in the apartment with music playing quietly in the background in an attempt to drown out his stifling loneliness. But that night, Jimin had spent the evening listening into the occasionally chaotic shenanigans of apartment five with a warmth in his chest and a promise to properly introduce himself to Min Yoongi

And that was a promise he fully intended to keep the following day. What better way to mend disastrous first impressions then a home cooked meal? The plan was to make his way to the supermarket and grab everything he needed in order to cook a meal big enough to feed himself and the family next door. A great plan really, as it gave him the excuse he needed to finally leave his apartment and get a taste of what Daegu had to offer him.

The cooking part of that plan was easy enough, a simple kimchi stew he had cooked countless times before. Granted, he hadn’t cooked it in a fair while, Alexander had always preferred western all American dishes and was not easily impressed by any kind of traditional Korean food beyond kimbap or the odd cup of instant ramen. Still, Kimchi stew was one of the first dishes he had ever learned to make and he knew he could do it beautifully without much fuss.

So yes, cooking was easy, but getting all of the necessary ingredients however, was proving to be just as difficult as he had expected. His preexisting knowledge on public transport was practically non existent, and to top it all off, Jimin didn't even know where the nearest supermarket was.

After much planning, a quick search on Naver and a brief call to Jinae, he was finally confident enough with his rout to leave his apartment, shopping list on hand. To say he was no longer anxious would have been a lie, and stepping outside onto the cracked and mottled sidewalk had him itching to return back to his bed, kimchi stew be damned. But once again, the rational side of his brain was able to convince the rest of his body to suck it up and get on with it.

It was still bright out, hardly the seedier alleyways of his nightmares but the fact remained that this was precisely the type of neighborhood Jimin's chauffeur would drive him through with the doors locked. While Jimin was determined to make this place his home, he couldn't ignore or disregard a lifetime of caution. He walked swiftly, head down and senses on high alert, everyone he passed on his way to the bus stop had him gripping the handles of his bag firmly and he knew he was being ridiculous. After everything he had been through, a simple trip to the local supermarket shouldn't leave him drowning in anxiety and paranoia.

As expected, it was all for naught as Jimin found himself sat on a nearly empty bus not even ten minutes after leaving his apartment. Not a single person had so much as looked at him, save for the polite smile the old bus driver had sent his way as he fumbled for the correct change to pay for his ticket. Needless to say, Jimin was embarrassed at his own overreaction and he silently promised to continue pushing himself in an attempt to truly move on and settle into his new city.

Admittedly, it was much easier to calm down once he got off the bus on the main street. Shops and stalls lined the street and people milled about enjoying the rare November sun. The bustling of the city was much more familiar here then it was in the quieter residential areas of Daegu, and if Jimin ignored the fading signposts and worn out shop fronts he could easily picture himself back in the streets of Seoul.

Feeling more in his element, Jimin quickly located the supermarket, pulled out his list and cracked on.

It quickly became evident, just how much Jimin had missed regularly eating Korean food. Not even fifteen minutes later, and he had his cart filled to the brim with ingredients he hadn't had much use for in years. What had started off as a list for simple Kimchi stew had branched out to weeks worth of meal plans. Jimin's mouth already watering after all the soups and grills and side dishes he couldn't wait to eat again.

Finally, almost three hours later Jimin found himself struggling thoroughly with the mountain of bags he was suddenly faced with. He flushed in embarrassment as he practically collapsed into a seat at the bus stop, a couple people looking his way and smiling with polite sympathy as he struggled to catch his breath.

Whenever he went shopping in Seoul, he would be accompanied by someone in Alexander's staff. They were there mostly to keep an eye on where he went and who he spoke to- he didn't want to think about the time one of them had reported back to Alex about a slightly flirtatious exchange Jimin had had with one of the employees of his favorite perfume bar- still, they had been great when it came to making sure he never had to carry any of his own shopping.

Stupidly, Jimin couldn't help but miss the doting.

 

~

 

The hours ticked by in a flash and before he knew it, it was nearing time for dinner.

The apartment was filled with music and the deep aroma of a hearty home cooked meal. It didn't feel like a chore like it had for so long now, Jimin was having the time of his life cooking the food he couldn't wait to eat. Kimchi stew bubbling away on the stove as he finished garnishing the last of his countless side dishes. Eggplants and bean sprouts and noodles and rice lay spread out on the counter before him, waiting to be sealed up and packed away ready to be taken next door.

The smells and flavors were so warming that Jimin couldn't sense even an itch of hesitation or nerves as he made his way to the door of apartment five. He was so very excited to share the fruits of his labor and before he could even think about it he was knocking on the door and waiting with bated breath.

It didn't take long for him to hear the shuffle of footsteps pausing briefly on the other side of the door. Jimin assumed he was looking through the peephole so he made sure to send a pleasant smile its way. It took a good few seconds before the door finally opened, just a sliver, door chain still in place and nothing to indicate that the man was happy to see him. Yoongi peeked his head out and fixed him with a closed off look.

"No offence but what do you want?"

The smile slipped cleanly off Jimin's face and he couldn't help but flush. Maybe this had been a mistake after all? Of course Jinae had nothing but nice things to say about his neighbor, and Jimin had wanted to maybe strike up a friendly acquaintance but he hadn't stopped to think for even a moment if Yoongi wanted the same. The alpha had greeted him with open hostility the first time they had met after all, and adopting a pup did nothing to change the fact that the man maybe just didn't like him.

Still, he had spent all day preparing the food piled up in the bag at his side and he lifted it up in front of him, gaze down as he presented his offering.

"Umm, I just- I made some food for you, and- I just wanted to maybe introduce myself properly?" the explanation came out as more of a question and he cringed inwardly at his competence. He felt so embarrassed. "I should probably leave." he laughed awkwardly, hesitating for a second between leaving the food or taking it back with him.

"Wait."Yoongi sighed before closing the door, Jimin could hear him fiddling with the chain on the other side before opening it fully a second later. He had a terse expression on his face, brows furrowed and a small pout on his lips as he spoke. "Way to make me feel like a total dick." He laughed good naturally and Jimin felt some of the tension leave his body in a wave of relief. Still, he couldn't help but be confused as to why Yoongi had taken such a quick disliking to him, he didn't know how to respond so he just stayed silent, gaze still down.

Yoongi sighed again, running one had through is hair in frustration before he took the offered bag out of Jimin's hands.

"Listen, I am so sorry about all of that." His voice was strained and genuine and Jimin finally found it in himself to look up and meet the alpha's gaze. Yoongi's expression was tight and amazingly enough, a slight flush had found its way onto his cheeks, "You caught me at a really bad time that day and I let that color the way I thought about you. You didn't deserve that."

"N-no, it's okay." Jimin placated. It wasn't. Yoongi's bad mood had given Jimin days of needless anxiety and stress. He could never voice that out loud though, if there was one thing he knew, it was that alphas hated being called out.

"It's not okay. You're obviously a good person or you wouldn't be here right now. I am so so sorry." Yoongi was beginning to sound even more desperate and Jimin found himself instinctively releasing soothing pheromones into the hallway around them. Yoongi, seemed to respond instantly and his form seemed to fold into itself. "It's no excuse but, I had just finished dealing with some bullshit at my kids nursery and then- I don't know. The way you were dressed in your fancy clothes and you smelt like Seoul and you were acting all suspicious around me and it just pissed me off and I snapped. God, I am such an asshole-"

"No! I swear it's okay, I understand." Now it was Jimin's turn to flush in shame. Yoongi was right, Jimin had instantly met him with suspicion, walking quickly and holding his bag close as if the alpha was about to lunge for no reason. "I shouldn't have assumed bad of you in the first place-"

"But I basically proved you right-"

"Anyone would have been upset-"

"I'm really sorry."

They both apologized at the same time, laughing awkwardly when they realised how far the conversation had derailed.

"How about," Jimin began, a shy smile on his lips. "We start over?"

"Yeah," Yoongi laughed. The sound was gruff and warm and Jimin could totally see what Jinae had meant by the alphas supposed charms. He allowed himself a quick few seconds to catalogue just how handsome the man was; dressed in grey sweats and a worn out black t-shirt. His cat like features had softened completely, a sweet flush still coloring his cheeks as he smiled somewhat bashfully.

"Hi. I'm Park Jimin. I just moved in next door."

He put his hand out for Yoongi to shake and he couldn't stop the smallest part of his mind that squealed as he realized just how huge the alphas hand was compared to his own.

"Hi Park Jimin. I'm Min Yoongi, It's nice to meet you."

And just like that, the air between them had cleared and Jimin was happy to say that he had nothing stopping him from totally owning his new life in apartment six.

"Daddy!" The moment was effectively broken by a yell from inside Yoongi's apartment. A second later and the pup made his appearance at the door. Jimin mentally cooed at the sight of the small toddler trudging up to them with a small brown poodle in his arms. He held the animal under its front legs, holding it up to his father with another put upon whine, "Daddy! Holly stole my cheese stick again!" He exclaimed, close to tears as the dog continued to chew it's stolen treat, seemingly totally at ease being held by the toddler that was barely bigger than him.

"I'm sorry Kookie, I'll get you another one in a second okay," Yoongi gingerly took the animal from him, putting it back down on the ground only for the dog to instantly flop over onto it's back at the child's feet. The toddler looked down at the poodle with round eyes screaming betrayal. "Baby, why don't you say hi to our new neighbor?"

That seemed to do the trick. The pup's attention was effectively stolen from the squirming animal at his feet and he graced Jimin with a wide grin, bunny like teeth on full display. "Hello neighbor! What's your name?"

"My name is Jimin. What's yours?"

The kid grinned, little body squirming as he tried to hold back his giggles enough to answer, "My name is Holly!" He cackled and then bent down to pick up the small dog, once again holding him under the front legs as he presented him to Jimin. "And this is Jungkook!" The puppy yipped excitedly, tail wagging furiously behind him as Jungkook continued to laugh.

To say Jimin's heart was instantly taken would have been a massive understatement and he turned to look up at Yoongi to see that the alpha was biting back laughter of his own. The smile on his face was the biggest Jimin had seen yet; teeth and gums on display as he looked on fondly at his excited son, honey practically dripping from his eyes. Jimin was suddenly struck by just how beautiful the alpha was and his cheeks flushed brighter then they had in years. He teared his gaze away quickly, fixing his attention back onto the pup.

"I don't know why but something tells me you're trying to trick me!" Jimin exaggerated the conspiratory tone in his voice and was rewarded once again by cheeky little laughs.

"No! I promise!" Jungkook insisted.

"Okay then I believe you." Jimin relented, crouching down so that he was eye level with the pup. "Well then Holly-" Jungkook snickered into the dogs fur, "I spent all day cooking and I brought some food over for you and your Daddy to share. Make sure Jungkook doesn't steal any okay?"

"Okay!" Jungkook promised and with that, he deemed the conversation over. dropping the dog gently onto his feet and running back into the apartment with barely a goodbye.

Jimin straightened up, mind still processing the whirlwind that was Jungkook.

"Well... he's certainly a character." Jimin laughed and Yoongi shrugged his shoulders in a 'what can you do?' fashion.

"I don't know where it all comes fro-" He was cut off by the sound of a distant crash followed by a 'It wasn't me!". Yoongi cringed and Jimin smiled sympathetically.

"I think that's my cue to leave."

Yoongi smiled apologetically, nodding his head in agreement.

"Thanks again Jimin," He gestured to the bag still in his hand, hopefully the food was still warm. "I really don't deserve all this."

"Don't be silly, I just hope you like it."

“I’m sure it'll be amazing."

There was a moment then, wherein they were both angled to leave but still hesitating to do so. Jimin didn't really want to put a word to the feeling in the air between them, this coy and hesitant alignment to a person one step beyond a simple acquaintance. There was something about Yoongi's scent that called to him so sweetly, when it wasn't soured by agitation it was warm and earthy, the boldness of it softened by the milky softness of a pup. It was clear that Jungkook took great care into scenting his father, and for the faintest of moments the image of the excitable child scenting Yoongi flashed through his mind clear enough to melt his heart completely.

Once all of the misunderstandings and nerves were stripped away Jimin couldn't help but take a moment to once again appreciate just how handsome the alpha before him was. He was nothing like the alphas Jimin used to drool over as a teen, no, Jimin was always more attracted to the big and burly types he would always see in Hollywood movies; tall and toned and daringly strong, sun kissed, golden bronzed skin stretching over miles of muscle. Yoongi looked nothing like them, he stood barely a hair's width taller then Jimin, pale and delicate with doll like lips and cat like eyes.

There was something captivating about him and Jimin imagined they would have been stuck like that, trying to understand what it was that held their attention to each other for an awkward eternity had Jungkook not called out to his dad impatiently.

"Daddy! I'm hungry!"

"You've been summoned," Jimin laughed, the strange bubble collapsing around them "I'll see you around neighbor."

With that, he pulled himself away back into his apartment, taking a moment to clear the haze in his mind before taking a seat at the table, already filled with his portion of food. As he ate his mind couldn't help but wonder into the apartment next door. Knowing that they were eating the same food as him, somehow made the meal taste so much better.

Made it taste less lonely.

 

~

 

Jimin was pulled from sleep by a gentle knocking on his door. His eyes opened blearily and it took him a moment longer than it should have to grasp that a knock on the door meant someone was waiting for him on the other side. He didn't have a clue as to who it could be and for a brief white hot moment of panic he thought perhaps Alex had found him after all.

The thought was enough to shock every last inch of lethargy out of his body in an instant. He pulled himself out of bed, heart racing as he neared the front door, checking through the peephole with bated breath.

The relief at seeing Yoongi on the other side was so enormous he felt his knees buckle beneath him. He knew he would have fallen had he not braced himself against the heavy wood of the door as he fumbled with the lock and the chain. He pulled the door just as Yoongi was about to knock again, the alpha paused with his fist raised in the air as Jimin fixed him with a bright sunny smile. Jimin's breath was still coming out heavy, heart slowly settling from it's panic and he hoped it wasn't as obvious as he felt it was.

Yoongi's eyes were wide as he brought his hand down to rub at the back of his neck awkwardly. "Uhm..." He hesitated and Jimin cocked his head to the side in confusion. "Did I... Did I wake you?" his eyes flitted downwards only to shoot back up quickly, his face slowly turning a pale shade of pink.

Jimin followed his gaze downwards, eyes widening as he finally remembered his clear state of undress. He'd slept in nothing but an old t-shirt and a pair of briefs last night, the shirt so old it used to fit him comfortably as a pre teen, now it wrapped snug as anything around his body, the hem coming up just short of the waistband of his briefs, leaving a sliver of stomach exposed to the cold air of the hallway.

A squeak of a gasp pushed its way through his lips and he slammed the door shut right in the frozen alphas face. "Just a second!" he yelled, voice coming out strangled as he dashed into his room, throwing on a pair of sweats and the biggest frumpiest sweater he could find. He was so embarrassed he could cry, his face so hot he felt dizzy with it. Yoongi would have been able to see everything under that train wreck of an outfit. That shirt had been tight even then, now it acted like a second skin, god why hadn't he thrown it away years ago?

He rushed back to the door, taking a second to compose himself before throwing it open, avoiding Yoongi's gaze like it would kill him.

"Jimin, I am so sorry, It's almost twelve, I just assumed you would be up-" his words came out rushed and clumsy, tripping over themselves as he tried to apologize and Jimin felt impossibly more mortified.

"Stop! uh, It's fine really," He laughed unconvincingly, hand waving dismissively in the air between them, eager to move on and pretend it had never happened. "So! what brings you over?"

Yoongi cleared his throat, shaking his head as if to rid the image of Jimin's practically obscene pajamas from his mind. The act itself was subtle enough Jimin would have missed it had it not been for the fact that he was watching Yoongi's expression intently.

"Right yeah, uhh... Jinae called me this morning saying you were having issues with your bedroom window?"

"Oh! yes I have," He remembers asking her about it when she had come to visit, and he was only now noticing the small toolbox Yoongi had at his side. "She did mention that you did a lot of repairs around here." he said, stepping aside to let him into his apartment. The atmosphere was still tinged with flustered embarrassment but Jimin was determined to move on and pretend it had never happened. It seemed as though Yoongi was of a similar mind as he passed by him over the threshold with a low hum.

"Yeah she gives me the odd job here and there, " He stopped to gesture over at the halfway open bedroom door, "guessing this is your room?"

Jimin nodded, closing the door behind him quickly and brushing passed Yoongi before he could get any closer, "Yeah uhmm, just gimmi a second to-" he disappeared into his room before he could finish his sentence, but you would have to be a fool not to understand.

give me a second to make sure there isn't anything indecent laying about

Jimin flew through his room like a tornado, making sure everything was in an acceptable state. Part of his concern was of course making sure there weren't any particularly suggestive pieces of underwear hanging about - what could he say, he liked the way they felt on his skin - he kicked something black and lacy under the bed and when everything was suitably hidden he took an extra few seconds to neaten things up a bit before finally allowing Yoongi in.

From that point on things progressed rather uneventfully. Yoongi had looked at it for barely a second before figuring out what the problem was; the lock mechanism was broken, an easy fix he had said, "Just really fucking tedious."

Jimin apologized about the hassle, still flustered somewhat by the presence of the man in his home so unexpectedly. A small part of his mind was incredibly frustrated by his reaction; yes he was sweet and charming and his scent carried a warmth Jimin had never felt before, but still, he was just an alpha he barely knew and he needed to get a grip.

"Don't worry about it, I'll have it fixed in a second." he reached into his toolbox, pulling out a small electric drill and started on removing the handle, the noise cutting off any potential conversation for a few seconds. He turned back to Jimin as soon as it was off, fixing the omega with a concerned look. "Didn't you just wake up? You should go and make yourself some breakfast while I get this done."

"What? no I'm fine-"

Yoongi shook his head in disapproval while he rummaged around in his tool box, "Don't start on me with that, I have to force Jungkook to eat his breakfast every morning and I'll do the same to you if I have to."

An abrupt laugh escaped Jimin's lips, a mix between flustered and incredulous, "What?"

Yoongi had paused in his rummaging, face heating up once again as it seemed even he was shocked by how overly familiar he had sounded just then. He had just scolded Jimin as though they were old friends instead of new neighbors, and Jimin hoped against all odds that the alpha couldn't tell just how much he had liked it.

"I'll just go grab something quick then," Jimin walked backwards towards the door and Yoongi nodded stiffly in response, turning his attention back to the window as Jimin slipped out into the hallway, popping his head back in for a quick second to ask Yoongi if he wanted anything, to which he responded that a coffee was fine.

One cup and ten minutes later, Yoongi was done and there was now a crisp midday breeze blowing through Jimin's bedroom as Yoongi packed his things away.

"Thank you so much!" Jimin didn't even attempt to hide just how happy he was with the new freshness the breeze brought with it. He was used to big and airy open space where he lived and the apartment, while it met all of his basic needs, was still so small and sometimes quite stifling. Something as simple as a window in his bedroom was enough to make things feel more open and Jimin was practically glowing with happiness.

To say Yoongi was shocked by his enthusiasm was somewhat of an understatement. To him, this was nothing more than a simple fix and a quick bit of maintenance and he couldn't quite understand why it meant so much to him. But Jimin was never a difficult man to please, all of the luxuries of his past amounted to a small open window in a place he could call his own.

"It's not a problem," Yoongi assured, allowing the beaming omega to lead him to the door. He turned back to face him once he was standing outside "Just let me know if you ever need anything else okay?"

Jimin nodded, thanking him again with a bright smile, teeth on display and eyes practically disappearing behind his full cheeks. Yoongi was once again struck dumb and he didn't even notice he was staring until his mind finally processed that Jimin was asking him a question.

"How much do I owe you?"

"What? oh, don't even worry about it." Yoongi waved him off dismissively, the thought of charging him for what only amounted to ten minutes of work somewhat ridiculous.

Jimin thanked him again and that's where the whole ordeal should have ended; with Yoongi saying goodbye and getting on with his day. Instead they found themselves back in the same inexplicable limbo they had found themselves in the last time they had been faced with a goodbye. The only difference was that this time there was no Jungkook to pull his father away.

Jimin's socked feet curled against the fibers of his doormat as he fiddled with the sleeves of his giant sweater. He couldn't say why, but something in the tension between them urged him not to end this interaction.

"So...," He began, somewhat hesitantly, "What else are you getting up to today?" he cringed inwardly at how terrible he suddenly was at small talk. Still, Yoongi perked up nearly instantly and Jimin hoped he wasn't misreading things when he felt as though the alpha was also grasping at straws to keep them talking.

"Well, it's my day off. I was just going to meet up with a friend and run a few errands before I have to pick up Jungkook."

"Ahh, that sounds really nice."

"Yeah uhm.. what about you?"

Jimin could see the inwards groan Yoongi was struggling to conceal and seeing him also struggle made him feel quite a bit better. He laughed, equal parts self deprecating and shy as he leaned delicately against the door frame. "Wish I could say I had friends to meet up with. But I don't."

"Have friends?" Yoongi laughed, not cruelly but still, it managed to hit something Jimin hadn't realized was there, he frowned not even given a chance to hide his sudden hurt as his scent spiked with an obvious flair of bitterness. Yoongi's eyes widened and he flailed his arms about as he stuttered over an apology, "I didn't mean it like that I swear! I just- I cant believe you don't have friends because, well, because you're literally the cutest person ever and like god, I never talk this much to anyone probably because I always shove my foot in it, I'm so sorry-"

"You think I'm cute?" Jimin had blushed so much in the past hour he was surprised his cheeks weren't permanently pink.

"I said that?"

Jimin laughed and it didn't take long for Yoongi to join in with him. The alpha's cheeks mirrored Jimin's own in terms of pinkness and he fiddled with the hair on the back of his neck as they both allowed the admittedly endearing awkwardness to wash over them. They stood like that, like fools in the hallway for a few moments before Yoongi decided to speak up again.

"You could always come with me?"

"What?"

"Come with me into town. You can meet my friend Hoseok and well," He trailed off, losing confidence half way through and mumbling the rest, "I could be your friend if you want...?"

"Really?"

The strange tension between them had dissipated so quickly it gave Jimin whiplash, but he couldn't miss it even if he wanted to because it was instantly replaced with a bubbling sort of excitement in the deepest pit of his stomach. Never, not at any point in his life did he ever have a friend; growing up, play dates were arranged for him and acquaintances were pre screened for approval. Beyond that, Alexander could never have been considered a friend, their first meeting had resulted in Jimin pressed up against the inside of a bathroom stall where he had initially gone out for dinner with his family.

Running errands with Yoongi and his friend was certainly a more attractive plan then spending his day teetering along the line of loneliness in his apartment. It would also allow him the chance to see more of Daegu without the inherent anxiety and fear that came attached with venturing out alone.

"I'm leaving in fifteen minutes, I can come and get you on my way out if you want?"

"Yes! I'll be ready!"

After that, saying goodbye was infinitely easier when they knew they would be seeing each other again in less than half an hour. Jimin closed the door behind him as he practically flew into his bedroom again, taking a moment to bask in the fresh breeziness before throwing open his wardrobe.

The weather outside was a perfect balance of crisp and warm so Jimin threw on a simple pair of light wash jeans and a large white t-shirt before making his way into the bathroom to put on a subtle layer of makeup. It wasn't exactly necessary, but the excitement of it all made him want to put in a little bit of extra effort.

Fifteen minutes later and he was shrugging on a thick knitted jumper just as Yoongi knocked on his door.

He was standing outside dressed comfortably with a pair of black skinny jeans and a large hoodie, the all black ensemble would have cut quite an intimidating image had it not been for Holly wagging his tail happily at his feet. The small dog yipped excitedly as Jimin bent down to pet him in greeting.

"Ready to go?"

"Lead the way!"

 

~

 

Getting to the bus stop was decidedly less terrifying with Yoongi by his side, not having to check the map on his phone every other second worked wonders for his nerves as he focused instead on the man besides him.

He was quiet during their walk to the bus stop all the way through to the moment they stepped off at the city center. It was mostly silent but Jimin didn't feel as though it was awkward, it was as if there was no longer any pressure to force a conversation now that they had established a step beyond friendly neighbors. They were friends now, and Jimin wasn't worried about finding excuses just to talk to Yoongi for a couple moments longer.

They were slowly making their way through the main shopping pavilion over to where Yoongi was set to meet up with his friend. The area was fairly quiet considering it was a week day so It wasn't as overwhelming as Jimin had feared, instead he felt every bit as excited as Holly looked, trotting happily besides them and taking in all of the sights and smells the city center had to offer.

Yoongi asked how Jimin had been settling in and the omega had admitted that it was going much better now that they were on friendly terms. "It was starting to feel a little lonely." Jimin admitted a sad smile marrying his features and Yoongi's steps slowed for a second as he regarded him with gentle eyes.

"Well, you know where to find me if you ever need anything."

Jimin beamed, more thankful than he could express, not that he was given a chance to even try before Holly was rearing up with excited yip's, pulling at his leash suddenly. Jimin looked on, startled as Yoongi laughed, bending down to clip him free, allowing the small dog to run ahead to a stranger sitting at an empty cafe table not even twenty feet away from them, his attention only on him for a second before he was affectionately greeting the other small dog at the strangers feet.

"That's Hoseok," Yoongi explained as they caught up to the three of them.

The man in question was smiling so wide it was like the sun itself had come out just to greet him. He stood up from his seat to pull Yoongi into a friendly hug, tapping him firmly on the back a few times before turning his attention to Jimin. His smile lost a fraction of its sunny intensity only to be replaced by something infinity more charming and sly.

"If that isn't the sweetest face I've ever seen," He cooed, and Jimin could feel himself ducking away shyly. This close, Jimin could smell the balanced scent of a beta and he wasn't ashamed to admit that it made him less inclined to find offence at his words had he been an alpha. It helped, of course, that Yoongi had mentioned on their way there that the man was one of, if not the best of his friends. So rather then shy away completely, instead, he allowed the man to take his hand into a firm shake as he introduced himself, "My names Hoseok, and you are?"

"Jimin."

"So, tell me Jimin, how do you know our Yoongi here?"

"Save it, Hobi," Yoongi cut in, turning to address Jimin next, "He already knows who you are."

Hoseok nodded, shrugging in acceptance and turning to take his seat once again, "It's true, how can i not?"

"Hobi.." Yoongi warned, tone just a cut under a threat but Hoseok continued, unperturbed as he fixed Jimin with a coy grin.

"Yoongi told me all about his gorgeous new neighbor with the to die for cooking skills."

"Jesus Hobi lay off!" Yoongi snapped, face practically on fire, Jimin's own face a mirror image as Hoseok cackled between them.

Jimin would later look back at that first meeting with a deep set fondness, finding it endlessly amusing to think about how accurate of an indication it was to their continued dynamic from that point on.

 

~

 

The weeks following that seemed to blur together pleasantly. Jimin could never have expected things to go as well as they did. He had left his old life behind in the midst of a tragedy, the thought of leaving filling him with so much anxiety he was practically choking on it. Not for one second did he imagine that weeks later he would have been so happy.

Yoongi and Jungkook became fast staples in his day to day routine. It had started one day with Jimin opening the door to his apartment to find father and son on the other side with a plate filled with misshapen and slightly burnt cookies.

"Kook insisted we make something for you."

Jimin's heart seemed to grow two sizes as he accepted the treats graciously, pausing for a second to hesitantly invite the pair inside to share them with him. An invitation Jungkook was more than happy to accept as he practically flew into Jimin's apartment before his father could say anything. From that point on it because somewhat of a norm for the duo to spend a few hours in Jimin's apartment before Jungkook's bedtime.

The pup had pilfered through Jimin's collection of vinyls in astonishment, even more impressed when Jimin had set one delicately onto a turntable, letting the soft orchestral piece fill the air around him in a gentle cadence. Jimin had told him then that he used to dance ballet, teach it even, but he hadn't expected Jungkook to wrinkle his nose in boredom, claiming that 'hip hop is so much cooler hyung~"

Yoongi had spluttered an apology, scolding Jungkook sharply before Jimin cut in with a light chuckle. He bent down to hand Jungkook his phone, asking the pup to play his favorite song and show him a dance. Jungkook had agreed, gleeful as he watched Jimin push his couch aside to make room and a thumping track began to play over the speakers

Yoongi sat, propped up against the wall, watching fondly as Jungkook taught Jimin how to floss. The pup would demonstrate with all the determination he could hold in his tiny body only to burst out into uncontrollable giggles as Jimin purposefully flubbed it.

From that point on it became the norm for the duo to spend a few hours in Jimin's apartment before Jungkook's bedtime. Dancing or chatting, one of the days Jungkook had bought an old battered up game of Monopoly and that game had lasted them a few days at least, Jimin and Jungkook quickly partnering up to force Yoongi into bankruptcy.

All the while, every second spent with Yoongi was something Jimin treasured with every ounce of his being. There was an attraction there of course, you'd have had to be blind not to see it, but even then, there was never a sense of expectation or pressure when it came to spending time together. Jimin was in no hurry to fall into some whirlwind romance- he'd already done all that and found no appeal in doing so again- instead, he was content to spend time with a friend that never asked for anything beyond what was already given.

Yoongi would catch his eye sometime, a serene glow in his eyes as they watched Jungkook get up to endless amounts of mischief. Sometimes, Jimin would allow himself to fold into Yoongi's side gently, allow the alphas warm scent to envelope his senses as he basked in wholesome bliss.

He still got sad sometimes, would cling to the toy bunny he had pilfered from that forgotten cot miles away from him, the white fur made tear logged on those occasional bad days. Sometimes, Jimin was wrecked once more by grief and regret but it got easier to push away.

At least, that was the case most of the time.

Jimin was pulled from sleep so suddenly he had to take a moment to re orientate himself. Something felt off this morning, Jimin's body felt colder and emptier then it had in weeks. The light outside his window was tinted with the dusty orange of an early early morning and he groaned as he fumbled for his phone that was jingling obnoxiously with his alarm tone.

He couldn't even begin to guess as to why there was an alarm set so early in the morning.

A few seconds of fumbling later and he finally had the device in his grasp.

A small, distressed whine escaped his lips as he read the small pop up notification on the screen.

CESAREAN OPP!!!

The alarm continued to ring throughout the bedroom and Jimin couldn't find it in himself to turn it off.

He had totally forgotten, but of course. Today would have been the day Jimin headed into the hospital to deliver his baby.

His baby. He would have been in his arms by the end of the day if Jimin hadn't failed him.

If Jimin hadn't killed him.

The thought brought with it a wave a nausea so intense he was barely able to make it into the bathroom across the hall before he was collapsing onto the floor, just about managing to angle his face into the toilet bowl in time for him to dispel everything he had eaten the previous night.

He sat curled up against the cold porcelain for what felt like an eternity, retching so violently Jimin was surprised he hadn't already seen blood thrown into the filth that lay before him.

The unexpected reminder was coupled painfully with an all consuming guilt for forgetting in the first place. How could this date have come to him so surprisingly, when it was a date he had eagerly looked forward to everyday before it all went sour. How could he have dared try to forget everything so easily. To think he was worthy of happiness when he couldn't even protect his child long enough to take his first breaths.

Jimin lay his head against the rim of the toilet, the tang of bile in the air making his nausea roll excruciatingly around in his gut as he choked on the stench and his own pained crying.

 

~

 

It had been four hours since Jimin's alarm had woken him up and destroyed every bit of the happiness he had managed to create for himself. The birth would have been done by now; omega males were blessed in a way- to have a scheduled cesarean as opposed to hours of labor. In another world, Jimin would have been cradling his pup in his arms by now, sour and exhausted, but not so alone.

Instead, he found himself in a comatose state.

He was curled up in bed, the tightest ball he could manage as he clutched the toy bunny to his chest, stroking it's soft fur with gentle, reverent fingers.

Stupidly, he wondered what Alexander was doing right now. Had he made the connection? Did he know his son would have been born today if he hadn't kicked Jimin to an inch of his life? Did he regret it?

Jimin's mind continued down in a seemingly endless cycle, memories he had tried desperately to bury being exhumed and put forth before him. His ribs hurt suddenly, breaths coming short. his arm throbbed with phantom pain and he swore he could feel glass in his hair.

He knew he could have spent an eternity there had it not been for the sudden knocking on his door.

While every inch of his being wanted to remain where he was, warm and safe within the confines of his bed, the knocking grew insistent and he could hear the muffled voice of Jungkook calling out to him. Suddenly, the distance between Jimin and the child was too much, he couldn’t bear it, the teddy felt cold in his hands and he dropped it with a shudder, practically falling out of bed to get to the door.

"Jungkook" His voice came out heavy, as though he had just ran a marathon in the space between his bedroom and the door that now lay open, letting the brisk chill of the hallway outside tickle against his skin, "Good morning."

"How come it took a million minutes to open the door?" Jungkook pouted, stepping easily into Jimin's open arms as he smushed his small face into the soft cotton of Jimin's shirt. The milky scent of a pup washed over him like a wave of calm and Jimin felt himself inhaling after it like a starved man.

"Did we wake you?"

Oh, Yoongi was there, of course he was. Jimin didn't want to think too much into why his presence suddenly made him uneasy. He straightened up, fixing the alpha was a smile he hoped didn't look as strained as it felt. Jungkook was pulling at a loose thread at the hem of Jimin's sweater and Jimin let the fingers of one hand card gently through the silky darkness of his hair as he responded to Yoongi's question.

"No, i'm just having a lazy day." He laughed tightly, but Yoongi didn't seem to notice as he smiled brightly at his answer.

"I'm glad you said that because, well.. I have a huge favor to ask for?" the last bit came out as a question, as though asking for permission. Jimin's body stiffened, he wasn't in any state to do anyone any favors; a small fearful part of his mind worried about how Yoongi would react if Jimin filed to help him properly, would he hurt him in return? He nodded stiffly in response and Yoongi continued with an apologetic tone in his voice, "I got called into the garage last minute today, and couldn't sort out a babysitter in time. I hate to ask but could you maybe watch Jungkook till I get back?"

If Jimin was to be truly honest, he would say that there was nothing on earth he wanted more then to keep the pup by his side for as long as possible. In fact, the thought of being apart from Jungkook seemed to send a shock of pure terror right through him, he found himself looking down at the child just to make sure he was still there, he felt as though the child would slip right through his fingers if he wasn't careful enough.

"... are you okay?"

Yoongi's voice faded into his consciousness, pulling him from his own mind with a sharp tug. He stepped closer towards Jimin, hand coming to rest lightly on his shoulder as if to steady him. Jimin couldn't help but shrink away somewhat. Instead, he stepped back so that there was once again a small distance between them, he sent Yoongi another smile, "I'm fine, just tired but I can keep Jungkook for today. It's no problem!"

Yoongi hesitated for a moment, still concerned but it seemed desperation won over when his phone buzzed in his pocket, "I really have to go," he said after reading whatever message he had just gotten, "I really appreciate you keeping him Jimin, really." he then bent down to pull Jungkook closer to him, pulling him into a hug and telling him to behave. Jimin could feel goosebumps rise against his flesh as he watched the alpha pull Jungkook away from him, his nerves itching for him to pull the pup back into his arms and close the door.

Stupid. Yoongi was Jungkook's father, he loved him he would never hurt him. Stupid.

His nerves only settled once the door was closed and Jungkook was happily waddling over to the kitchen to look for snacks.

 

All in all, Jimin's day with Jungkook went by swimmingly.

The child was the best distraction Jimin could have hoped for, perfectly content to stay cuddled up in his arms as they lay on the couch watching movies on Jimin's tiny television. Jimin practically had his nose buried in his messy mop of hair all day, and Jungkook preened under the attention.

It was only after they had finished eating, Jimin neglecting to clean up in favor of chasing a squealing Jungkook around the tiny apartment that things went downhill. Jungkook decided he wanted to play hide and seek without actually telling Jimin before hand. One minuted the pup was running around screaming and giggling to his heart's content, and the next he was disappearing into Jimin's bedroom and falling quite.

Jimin burst through the door, hot on his tails. Logically, he knew the room was tiny, not as though he could hide in many places, but suddenly losing sight of him seemed to be the last push he needed to fall into hysteria.

"Jungkook!?" Jimin called out, his breaths starting to come short, "Jungkook baby please come out!"

Nothing.

Jimin fell the the floor, crawling over to the bed to peek under it, whining in distress when he wasn't there.

He was in the middle of ripping the sheets and pillow from the mattress when he finally broke down into tears, his voice calling out to him in a shrill plea, "Jungkook! Jungkook where are you! Don't leave don't leave don't leave don't le-"

His mind was blanking and before he knew it, small fingers were prying Jimin's hands away from his face as he sat propped up against the bedside cabinet.

"Jimin hyung! Jimin hyung i'm sorry!" Jungkook's little face was pinched up with worry, lower lip trembling as he crawled his way into Jimin's lap. "Hyung don't be sad any more." he buried his face into Jimin's neck, clearly distressed by the omegas sudden change in mood. Jimin whined in apology, tightening his arms around him and allowing his scent to wash over him.

 

 

~

 

 

At seven thirty, Jimin's phone lit up with a message from Yoongi telling him he would be home in fifteen minutes.

The reminder pulled Jimin out of whatever mindset he had found himself in. Jungkook was sitting in his lap, watching some kids program happily, mind starting to drift in and out of sleep, ignorant of the betrayal Jimin was only now realizing he had committed.

Jungkook was sitting in his lap and his scent was a perfect blend of soothing puphood and Jimin's own sweet floral.

Yoongi's scent was buried so deep it could barely be sensed.

Jungkook had been under Jimin's care for little over eight hours and in that time Jimin had subconsciously and quite thoroughly drenched the pup in his scent. Yoongi would be livid.

Jimin could very clearly recall the alpha telling him how difficult it was for him, a single alpha, to raise the orphaned pup on his own. The prejudice he had faced, the omega's that turned their pitying gaze over to his son and claimed they would have been better for the pup. Yoongi was not fit to parent. Alpha's could not be trusted with children and he would be better off handing him over to an omega.

Everyday, Yoongi had to live with the fact that society would always look down on his family as inferior, like he wasn't good enough simply because he was an alpha. And here Jimin sat, erasing his scent like it meant nothing, taking advantage of the fact that Jungkook's scent wasn't biologically linked to his fathers. Taking advantage over the fact that omega scents settled easier over pups like a blanket.

He had never been more disgusted with himself.

Wordlessly he slipped the drowsy child from his lap and settled him gently onto the couch. His heart hammering painfully against his rib cage as he looked back at the clock.

Yoongi would be here any minute.

How was Jimin meant to face him?

Senselessly, he imagined himself packing up his bags once again, taking Jungkook with him and running far far away. The anxiety rolling in his gut making the scenario more appealing by the second as he paced tirelessly around the room.

The last time Jimin had felt so anxious, he was waiting for the day to come where he would leave his house and come to Daegu. The days leading up to it seemed to have lasted lifetimes, every minute dragging by at a snail's pace. But this time, It seemed like seconds before Jimin was jumping out of his skin at the sound of a knock on his door.

He stood frozen, halfway between the couch and the door when Jungkook poked his sleepy face up from the couch cushions, face confused for a moment before he realized that the knocking on the door meant his father was home.

He wriggled excitedly off of the couch, making his way on sleep heavy limbs to the door. Jimin didn't know what came over him when he scooped the boy up in his arms before he could pass him. Jungkook giggled at first, settling easy on Jimin's hip before he realized the omega was walking him back over to the couch.

There was another knock on the door then, louder this time, followed by Yoongi's muffled voice.

Jungkook squirmed unhappily in his arms, "Hyung, my Daddy’s outside" as if Jimin didnt know. Still, Jimin ignored him and that's when Jungkook started to cry. "Hyung! Hyung my Daddy! how come you're not letting him come!"

Jimin tried to shush him, all but smothering him against his neck in an attempt to keep him close. He stroked Junkook's hair frantically in an attempt to calm him, anxiety and fear rushing through every vein of his body as the pup squirmed tirelessly in his arms. Yoongi's voice grew louder on the other side of the door, agitating the toddler even further until he was finally able to slip free and race over to the door, throwing it open in a second and barrelling into his father's legs.

"Daddy!" he was still crying, sniffling sadly and Yoongi scooped him up. Jimin wanted the ground to swallow him up before Yoongi's inevitable rage did. "Daddy, Hyung was being mean!"

Jimin stiffened just as Yoongi did, the alpha sniffing intently at Jungkook's neck, his nostrils flaring as he realized what had been done. Slowly, he placed the sniffling child onto the ground before taking a simple heavy step into the apartment, another step, and another until he was only a few away from the frozen omega.

The invasion of Jimin's space had him recoiling in fear, tears springing freely past his lashes as he collapsed onto his knees at Yoongi's feet.

"I'm sorry!" He gasped, the apology sounding raw and strained as it struggled past the heavy block in his throat. He had his head down, nose practically touching the ground as Yoongi came to a stop in front of him. His body flinched as he felt Yoongi pull him up so that he could look him in the eye.

For the first time since that first day, Yoongi's eyes were as cold and menacing as any alpha Jimin had ever known. He whimpered as his soured scent invaded his senses, hijacking every last inch of clarity he maintained.

"I don't know what kind of alpha you think I am, but I'm not going to lay a finger on you," The words would have been comforting had it not been for the way they escaped his lips with a hiss. Yoongi's face was twisted up in a cruel scowl, hurt and betrayal clear in the creases of his face, "So long as you stay the fuck away from me and my son."

With that, he stood back up, ignoring the pained whine that Jimin let out as soon as his back was turned.

Before Jimin could clear the haze of fear from his mind, Yoongi had scooped up the now hysterical pup and disappeared behind a slam of Jimin's door.

 

~

 

Guilt.

It was overwhelming.

His life lay in shambles at his feet and he had no one to blame but himself.

What he had done to Yoongi was beyond forgiveness, he deserved much worse then what he had been given. The fact that Jimin was left in one piece was a testament as to how good and kind Yoongi was and Jimin had done nothing but spit in his face in return.

He couldn't explain what drove him to behave the way that he did. Fear? Longing? None of it was good enough, none of it excused the gross way he had taken advantage of Yoongi's trust, and Jungkook's affection. As soon as Yoongi had left, Jimin could hear the pup crying through the thin wall between their apartments, he must have been beyond confused by the sudden turn of events. He had been apocalyptic in his cry's and Yoongi's gentle voice did nothing to sooth him as he continued to sob for almost half an hour before finally tiring himself out.

By that point, Jimin had managed to collect the pieces of his mind up from the floor he had collapsed on and made his way back into his bed, his own tears once again muffled by the soft toy rabbit he had left on his bed.

He didn't deserve to be happy. He was constantly disappointing those around him, no wonder he always ended up alone. If a good man like Yoongi wanted nothing to do with him then surly, the fault was in himself and nowhere else.

His parent's just wanted what was best for him, and he had left them without a word. He didn't want to think about how difficult it must have been for them, to loose their only child for no good reason.

Alexander provided him with everything he could have ever ask for and all he wanted in return was for Jimin to follow simple rules. What was truly so awful that he had to leave the way that he did? Nothing was ever good enough, he always asked for more.

Selfish, selfish so goddamn selfish.

It was quiet next door and Jimin's strained silent cries pushed him into a fitful sleep.

 

~

 

There was blood and glass all over the floor.

Every inch of his body seemed to burn in agony but none of it registered as he crawled over to the hunched up figure in the midst of it all.

"Alex?" he lay his hand on the alpha's trembling figure, curling his own aching body around him in comfort. "Alex? what happened? Why- are you crying?"

He didn't move at first, his large body curled up over something in his lap as he cried and Jimin whined in distress, trying desperately to get him to unfurl and allow him into his arms.

His own body wracked with pain, his vision blurring suddenly and he fell back with a gasp as the alpha turned towards him. Jimin shook his head in a desperate attempt to clear his mind only to wretch back in fear at the sight of the bloodied alpha now before him.

Alexander looked him dead in the eye, his hands propped up in front him as he presented what he had been crying over so terribly.

A small, still body lay limp in his hands and Jimin scrambled back from him in terror as Alex began to inch closer.

"You made me do this." It was sickeningly fascinating to see Alex's usually stoic features creased up in sorrow. "And then you just left."

"I'm sorry!" Jimin begged for forgiveness, "Please, Alex I was just scared, Im sor-"

"Shut up!" Alex was angry now, a look he wore often. He stood up suddenly, allowing the small body to fall from his hands to the ground with a sick thump. "You betrayed me! I'll fucking ruin you Park Jimin."

He turned his back then, the room around him falling apart with every step he took until Jimin was left screaming in black nothingness.

Barely a second later, Jimin's own cries were matched by another. The voice was shrill and too familiar, cutting off as suddenly as they came and Jimin whirled around in the emptiness to see a light in the distance.

He ran to it mindlessly.

There was more glass here. More blood.

In the center of it all, was a small heap of clothes and hair.

He crawled towards it, ignoring the bite of glass under his knees. The closer he got, the more clear things became and his heart stopped dead in his chest as he finally gathered enough courage to turn the heap over.

"Jungkook!"

He shot up so quickly he felt dizzy from it, His body tumbling listlessly onto the hardwood floor of his bedroom, the pain didn't even register before he was up on his feet again, racing out of his apartment barefoot and all but collapsing against Yoongi's door, knocking desperately.

The door swung open harshly not even a second later and it took everything for him not to collapse as it did.

"Are you crazy!?" Yoongi hissed, "It's two in the morning you psycho!"

Jimin didn't care, the words didn't register enough to hurt him. Maybe he was a psycho, maybe he really was crazy but there was only one thing on his mind as he struggled to catch his breath against the fear threatening to choke him.

"Jungkook! is he okay!?"

Yoongi straightened up then, cat like eyes narrowing to fix him with a warning glare.

"He cried himself to sleep thanks to you."

"I know." Jimin sobbed, "I know, I heard. I'm sorry but-" He cut himself off to take in a painful shuddering breath, "Is he okay, Please Yoongi, I have to see him."

"No. No fucking way Jimin you aren't ever coming near my son again."

"Please!" Jimin truly did collapse then, body falling once again at Yoongi's feet as he continued to beg, "Please please please-" At some point his words devolved into a fight to catch some breath.

His chest heaved with the effort, body slick with sweat and shivering against the coldness of the hallway.

Yoongi was at his side then, on he knees pulling Jimin's hands away from his neck. He hadn't even realized he had been clawing at his skin, mind barely registering the blood under his nails.

"Shit Jimin. Breath, come on," He successfully managed to bring Jimin's hands away from his skin, pulling the heaving omega closer to him so he could easier monitor his breathing, "Breath Jimin, with me."

Jimin sobbed, he choked and shuddered and Yoongi, despite everything, held him close till finally, he breathed.

 

~

 

It was almost 3am and the pull of sleep weighed down Jimin's eyelid till they were aching to close. He jerked his head up when Yoongi approached with a steaming cup of tea. The alpha placed it gently on the small table in front of the couch before reaching over to help Jimin sit up straighter. Jimin whined, a small pitiful sound. He wanted nothing more then to melt away and cease to exist.

Yoongi sighed, passing Jimin the mug and taking his own space on the other side of the couch, angling his body so he could face the exhausted man besides him.

"I know you're tired," He began, voice quiet so as not to disturb Jungkook sleeping in the bedroom a room away. The low timber of his voice did nothing to aid Jimin in his battle to stay awake, "But I need to know what tonight was all about. You hurt me, and scared my son-" Jimin let out another pathetic whine at that, putting the tea down and curling up into himself, Yoongi paused, and it seemed for a second at though he was about to reach forward and pull Jimin close, like he had in the hallway not even an hour ago. Instead, he busied his hands with the edge of the blanket thrown over the back of the couch. "I have never pressured you into talking about things you don't want to. But whatever this is, it affected my family and brought you to my doorstep in a panic attack."

Jimin was s sobbing now, head tucked between his knees as he cried softly, "I'm sorry." he whispered, not being able to meet Yoongi's gaze.

The tension in Yoongi's shoulders escaped him with a sigh, like a balloon slowly deflating. He looked exhausted, dark circles framing his eyes and a heavy set to his shoulders as melted into the couch, gaze softening despite everything. "Jimin. Just talk to me, please."

It was still for a moment, Jimin's shuddering breaths and quiet sniffles the only things breaking the silence before he finally spoke, voice muffled against the fabric of his pajamas where he had hidden his face.

"What?"

"My baby-" Jimin tried again, voice breaking and he coughed in an attempt to clear the way for the words that followed, "My son. He should have been born yesterday-" The acknowledgment opened up the last inches of the floodgate and he was gone again, the hysterics wreaking havoc on his already exhausted mind and body. Yoongi didn't say anything, he didn't pull Jimin close like he so desperately wanted to, instead, he watched Jimin continue to weep, making his body as small as possible.

"Jimin, I don't underst-"

"I killed him!" The admission seemed to destroy every last bit of composure he had left, and Yoongi could see him quickly losing coherency as he began to fall back into a panic attack. Hand's coming up to scratch at his face once again as the words repeated in a sick cycle, "I killed him, I did, it's my fault he didn't make it. I killed him, I killed hi-"

Yoongi hissed, finally breaking through his own shock to pull Jimin's hands away, trying desperately to stop him from hurting himself even further. Jimin was totally out of it, eyes glazed and far away as Yoongi tried to get him to look at him, to focus and come back to the present. "I killed him-" He was all but whispering now, the words and pain and sour distress to Jimin's scent sending a cold shiver down Yoongi's spine as he worked to calm him enough so that his words would register.

"I don't know what you're talking about Jimin." He hooked his chin over the top of Jimin's head, tucking the whimpering omega close to him, hoping a steady alpha scent would help ground him. "I don't know much about anything but I know you could never do something like that."

Jimin was crying still, but at least they weren't body wracking, soul destroying heaves. Yoongi continued to shush him, rocking his body gently in a manner reminiscent of the way he had calmed Jungkook to sleep a few hours earlier. When finally it seemed as though he had calmed somewhat, Yoongi attempted to coax more out of him. He hated to push him more then he had already but he knew this- whatever it was- couldn't be allowed to fester any longer.

"Jimin. What happened?" Jimin shook his head, face still buried in the crook of Yoongi's neck, "Please help me understand."

"You'll hate me. You already hate me."

"I don't."

"You do."

"No. I hate what you did to Jungkook, and I hate that you're here like this right now. But I could never hate you."

"Promise?"

"I swear."

Jimin seemed to steal himself then, breathing deep, taking in as much of Yoongi's scent as he could before finally untangling himself from the alpha and settling himself back in his previous spot on the couch.

One breath in, one breath out. And then he began.

"My boyfriend, he- Thing's had been bad for a while, since the beginning really. He would hit me. He would do it a lot." Yoongi swore under his breath, body growing rigid but he didn't say anything. Let Jimin take his time and continue. "I was too stupid to do anything about it, thought maybe a baby would fix things. I stopped taking my pill without telling him." He laughed wetly, the sound hollow and full of self deprecation and Yoongi was having none of it.

He shuffled closer to him, taking his trembling hand in his own in a firm hold, "That's- Jimin that’s not a safe thing to do but- you’re not stupid. You must have loved him a lot."

"I did." he nodded his head, biting his lip in an attempt to stop himself from crying again, "I'd loved him for as long as I can remember. I accepted everything he did, even when he refused to go to any of my check ups with me. I went through the entire pregnancy on my own, and well. I came home after a check up. He- he said he was busy at work so he couldn't come and I believed him-" He had to stop there, his hand squeezing Yoongi's tightly as he took another steadying breath. "He was In bed with some other omega from work. They all knew about me they knew I was pregnant-" He was shaking now and Yoongi shushed him gently, his thumb running soothing circles against the back of his hand. "I lost it. I dragged that disgusting omega out of our bed and when Alex touched me I slapped him so hard he was bruised for days."

"Fucking good." Yoongi couldn't help but spit.

Jimin shook his head, smiling ruefully, "Not good. I should have just stayed quiet. I knew what he was like. I should have thought beyond my own anger, I put my baby at risk for no fucking reason- God, he beat me worse than ever, it was the first time I had ever laid a had on him and he would have killed me. He almost did. But his the omega stopped him and called an ambulance." Shockingly, he wasn't crying anymore, his voice taking on a cold and detached tone. Yoongi had a suspicion that it was all in an attempt from protecting himself from another breakdown. "I didn't even know my baby was a boy until they had removed the body... I wanted it to be a surprise." The life seemed to leave his body in one go, his final sentence coming out whisper quiet.

Yoongi's soul ached for the tragic omega before him. He regretted every time he had ever scared him. Their first meeting, even the way he had fell to his knees the day before, apologizing like he was scared to be hurt. It all made sense now and Yoongi felt sick with it.

"I'm sorry I buried your scent. Jungkook made me feel safe and- I didn't even know I had done it until it was too late-"

"I can't say that its okay... but I understand." Yoongi gave Jimin a sad smile, an olive branch and a chance to move on from it all. Jimin nodded stiffly, mumbling his thanks, fatigue drawing him quiet again."Why don't you stay here tonight. I think we have more to discuss after I drop Jungkook off to school."

"No, that's okay," Jimin assured. Yoongi's apartment was identical to his, meaning he only had one bedroom and one bed that he shared with his son. "Where would you sleep anyway?" He got up, feet unsteady as he steeled himself to make his way home.

"Jimin, I really think you should stay here. Me and Jungkook can take the couch-"

"No way!" Jimin laughed incredulously, "I am not going to let that happen."

"It's fine, Jungkook practically sleeps on top of me anyway. Besides, It's literally for two hours."

Jimin glanced at the clock on the wall, wincing as it read a little past five am. "I'm so sorry Yoongi."

"Don't be." He grumbled, shuffling over to the bedroom, patting Jimin gently on the shoulder as he passed.

He return moment's later, Jungkook curled up in his arms, still fast asleep as his father settled down onto the couch with a grunt. The movement jostled him slightly and the pup whined, burying himself in his father's neck as Yoongi shushed him gently. Jimin's wounds were fresh and his heart ached at the sight. A sudden and desperate longing overwhelming him.

Yoongi looked up at him them, a gentleness to his tired eyes. Jungkook started to fuss and he rubbed his back soothingly, mouthing at Jimin to get to bed as he continued to dote on his son.

With a rueful smile, Jimin did as he was told. Crawling under the covers of the bed, he curled up in the minuscule warm spot Jungkook had left behind. Surrounded by the pup's gentle scent, he dozed off without a peep of a nightmare.

 

~

 

"Daddy, how comes were on the sofa?"

Jungkook was sitting up on Yoongi's chest, patting him awake with small hands on his cheeks. Yoongi groaned, blearily making out the time on the clock. Fifteen minutes before his alarm was set to go off at seven thirty. As usual.

"Daddy, whhhyy!" He was whining now, jumping tirelessly on Yoongi's chest, making him grunt in annoyance and pull the squirming child down so that he was once again laying flat. "Jimin hyung wasn't feeling very well so I let him sleep here so we can look after him."

"Oh." Jungkook grew still then, playing with the ends of Yoongi's hair, twisting the black locks between his small fingers as he often did when trying to sooth himself. "Daddy, Is Jimin hyung bad?"

"No! No baby of course not."

"But he made you angry, and I was scared." He was whining listlessly then. He was tugging on Yoongi's hair to the point where it hurt. Yoongi winced, prying his fingers away and holding Jungkook's hand in his own, bringing it up to his lips so he could kiss his fingers sweetly.

"No Kookie he was just really sad yesterday." Yoongi's heart ached something fierce at the thought of Jimin suffering so severely for so long. "Sometimes we do things we don't mean when we’re sad. Jimin hyung didn't mean to scare you baby, He loves you a lot."

Jungkook was crying then, not knowing what to do with all the big emotions running through his little body. "I love Jimin hyung too! I don't want him to be bad"

Yoongi shushed him, kissing his tears away gently, "Don't worry okay.. he's not bad, I promise."

"I don't want him to be sad either!"

"Well that's why he's sleeping in our bed right now. We're gonna make sure he's happy again aren't we?"

"Yeah! happy again!"

 

~

 

It was almost noon when Jimin woke up. It was more than slightly disorienting, being in a room that was structurally identical to his own but so very different. . Where he had his chest of draws was a playmat covered in lego’s, the wardrobe was covered in stickers and drawings and Jimin’s heart sank at how lonely it made his own room feel.

The familiar scent clued him into where he was and the memories of the previous day came flooding back in a rush that was equal parts heartbreaking and mortifying. He had become so overwhelmed by grief that he almost destroyed one of the only pure connections he had ever had with anyone. Luckily, Yoongi was more than a good man a Jimin thanked his stars that he was forgiven.

He could hear Yoongi puttering about in the kitchen, could hear the soft patter of Holly wondering after him. Jungkook must have already been dropped off to school, Jimin was slightly put off at that, but also thought it best he finish clearing things up with Yoongi before the alpha was comfortable allowing him around his son again.

He hesitated for a moment before finally leaving the warmth and comfort of the bed and tiptoeing over to the door. Holly noticed him first, the small dog bounding over to him happily, his opinion of Jimin untainted by last night, he only saw him as yet another person he could weedle head scratches from. Jimin smiled down at the excitable animal, bending down and giving him all the fuss he was so clearly after, he didn't look up at Yoongi once. Shame keeping his head down and attention on the one creature in the room that couldn’t judge him.

“Jimin, did you sleep well?” He was still standing in the kitchen area, drying his hands with a small towel as he spoke. His voice was gentle and gruff, delicate as though not to startle a small animal.

Jimin nodded, muttering a small thanks as he straightened back up, risking a quick glance at the alpha before him. Yoongi was dressed in his usual dark jeans, shirt and hoodie combo. Still, it was a contrast to Jimin who was still in his loose pajama shorts and tshirt. He shivered, feeling vulnerable all of a sudden and Yoongi, as attentive as always invited Jimin to curl up on the couch while he grabbed another hoody from the coat hooks by the door.

Jimin accepted it gratefully, tugging it on while Yoongi grabbed a bowl of chopped fruit from the fridge. He handed it wordlessly to Jimin as he made himself comfortable opposite the quiet omega.

“We probably still have loads to talk about don't we?” Jimin nodded, “I guess first, I need you to understand that using my son for comfort… it just isn’t healthy Jimin. I hate to be harsh but, Jungkook isn’t here to replace what you lost- hey, no please don't cry-”Jimin nodded again, using the sleeve of the hoodie Yoongi gave him to wipe away the wetness of his eyes. Yoongi shuffled closer, placing a calming hand on Jimin’s knee. “I’m not saying you can't be around him anymore. We just need to figure out a healthier way to move past what that asshole did to you.”

“I’m really sorry Yoongi. I didn’t want things to end up like this.”

Yoongi smiled sadly, nodding his head in understanding before leaning back against the couch again. Jimin instantly missed the warmth of his hand on his knee.

“I don't want to tell you how to move past this, I think it’s important for you to think about it yourself. But I’m here to help you do whatever it is you think you need to in order to be happy.”

“I just get lonely sometimes…” Jimin admitted, “I feel like every second of my day is waiting for the next chance I get to see you and Jungkook.” it would have been mortifying to admit had it not been for the gentle way Yoongi regarded him, humming softly in understanding.

“I know why you left Seoul, but don't you have anyone you want to reconnect with. Your parents?”

“No - I ran away and move in with Alex when I was sixteen-”

“Jimin-” Yoongi interrupted, tone dripping with so much concern it shocked Jimin into stuttering over his words before clamming up to let Yoongi talk, “Sixteen? Jimin, how old was he?”

“Twenty three…” Yoongi swore and Jimin shrunk back into himself. He knew how it sounded, even back then, but he justified it because- well- he was in love. It was only now, that he realised that things were as terrible as it looked like on the outside, and it was embarrassing to think. Embarrassing to accept how foolish he had been.

“Fuck Jimin,” Yoongi’s expression was one of anguish, he looked at Jimin like all he wanted to do was wrap him up tight and never let him go. The attention made him flush, curling tightly into himself and trying not to let himself cry again. It was terrifying but it felt so good to finally talk to someone about everything he had been living through. Yoongi’s concern validated his own feelings, proved to himself that he had made the right choice by leaving. “Jimin, how did you get tangled up with someone so disgusting.”

“He wasn’t always like that! It was him or some alpha my parents found-” it was more of a defence in his choices then of Alex, a question he asked himself countless times when waiting for the chance to leave, “He used to be so kind and gentle and he would always look after me and he gave me a place to go when I ran away from home- Yoongi, I was so desperate and I loved him so much.”

Amazingly, Jimin’s eyes weren't the only ones wet anymore. Yoongi cussed again, wiping angrily at his eyes, gaze for once wavering from Jimin as he fixated somewhere over his shoulder. Jimin could understood that It was a lot to process, even now, he had trouble coming to terms with everything.

The alpha took a moment to compose himself, taking a deep breath and clearing his throat before continuing again. “Okay… Okay so- no family. How about friend’s? Anyone you could get into contact with?”

“No one. I- I lost contact with everyone when he pulled me out of school- and I was never allowed to work so. Yeah.. no one.”

There was a moment then when Yoongi couldn't bring himself to move. Wide, incredulous eyes locked with Jimin’s as he processed just how desperate the situation was.

“I really fucked everything up.” Jimin laughed ruefully.

“I mean… yeah…”

For some reason. Jimin wasn’t insulted by it, in fact, the bluntness seemed to cut through the tension so suddenly he couldn't help but snort, “Way to be sensitive.”

“No- I’m sorry-”

Jimin was laughing then. The situation was so destitute and he had been so stupid he could only laugh, seeing Yoongi at a loss and so flustered by Jimin's sudden teasing made the whole thing funnier. Yoongi caught on then, chuckling along awkwardly and before long they were both laughing loudly, sharing relief from the heavy atmosphere.

“Holy shit Jimin, I am so sorry-”

“It’s fine I swear,” Jimin giggled, “I totally understand it’s pretty fucked up.”

“Well, it won't be for much longer,” Yoongi sobered up quickly, but the air around them was still infinitely lighter then it had been a second ago, “How would you feel about getting a job now?”

“I’ve been trying. I sent my resume to a few places but- no one wants to hire a school dropout with no work experience…”

“Well, I can ask around the garage and see if any of the guys know anyone thats hiring. Half of getting a job around here is having connections, and you have me now.”

“I do?”

“Yeah, me and Jungkook. We’re family now.”

 

~

 

Yoongi really was the greatest man Jimin had ever met, Jimin was blown away by his selflessness and the future suddenly looked brighter than it ever had before.

It was eight thirty on a saturday but he was already dressed and out the house. Yoongi and Jungkook were with him, walking alongside him as they made their way through town. Jungkook was walking between them, one hand in each of theirs as he gushed about how excited he was for Jimin’s new job.

“Hyung and can you always steal a cupcake for me?”

Jimin giggled, swinging his arm in time with Yoongi so that the pup could fly through the air with a squeal, “I won't have a job for long if I’m always stealing a cupcake for you.” Jungkook pouted, big eyes going round and pleading and Jimin’s heart practically melted. “I won’t steal any but I can always ask nicely and buy one for my favourite baby alpha.” They swung him again and he was happy once more.

It had been almost a month since that disastrous night and Jimin had only grown closer to the pair since then. Jungkook was quick to forgive Jimin and he couldn't have been more grateful for his second chance.

He’d been job searching tirelessly since then, Yoongi helping any way he could. In the end all it took was for one of the regular customers at the garage to overhear about his search. The alpha- Namjoon, had told Yoongi about the cafe his mate owned, incidentally a small place not far from the garage itself that was looking for a new barista.

Jimin had jumped at the chance, talking to the owner- Seokjin- through the phone and securing himself a job on a trial basis for now. Today was his first day, and Yoongi and Jungkook were more than happy to walk him down.

Jimin couldn't believe how lucky he was.

 

~

 

The door to the cafe swung open and Jimin braced himself for another wave of businessmen to rush in with endless orders of overly complicated drinks. He had just survived the lunch time rush, fumbling so terribly Seokjin had had to take over and save him from a meltdown on his first day.

He was incredibly patient though. Not for one second did he make Jimin feel as though he was stupid or worthless, instead he guided him through the rush with gentle support, cutting in smoothly when Jimin stumbled over an order or took too long to count through change. When the rush was over, Seokjin had pulled him to the side, reassuring him that he wasn’t in trouble in any way.

“I just want you to take a second to breath, that was more intense then usual and even I get flustered sometimes.”

“Thank you.” Jimin slumped in his chair. Seokjin laughed from his place opposite him.

“You did well Jimin. I would have lost my mind when that one guy tried to pay for eight drinks with a bag full of petty change, what kinda asshole does that?” Jimin groaned at the memory. The man had had the audacity to complain about the wait when Jimin had to count through a mountain of change, “If that ever happens again, I’m going to tell him to fuck off.”


“Seokjin! Should you really be talking like that to customers?”

Seokjin laughed once again, boisterous and contagious, “Please, I’m much too handsome for anyone to care about what I say to them.”

Jimin chucked softly to himself at the memory, his boss really was a character.

He turned his attention back to the door and the customers walking in. A young beta girl who smiled kindly at Jimin's greeting, bypassing the counter and joining her friends already seated at the back; behind her was none other then Yoongi. He was holding Jungkook’s hand in one of his own, the other holding onto Holly’s leash.

Jimin was overcome with excitement, he rushed out from behind the counter, scooping up Jungkook as he skipped towards him giggling. “Jimin hyung!” he squealed and Jimin settled Jungkook against him. The pup placed his hands on both of Jimin's cheeks before smacking a great wet kiss on his forehead. “Hyung how is work is it fun?”

“So much fun! I love it!” Jimin gushed, spinning around and pulling yet another string of giggled from the giddy child, “Even more now that my favourite person in the whole world is here.”

Jungkook giggled, “Don't tell my daddy he’ll get jealous.”

Yoongi rolled his eyes, stepping up to pull the reluctant child from Jimin's arms, “Don't tell me what?”

“Nothing~” Jimin and Jungkook crooned at the same time, falling back into peals of laughter.

Yoongi sighed in exasperation but Jimin could see the fondness underneath it all. He pulled Jimin into a gentle side hug, and Jimin couldn't help but melt into it. Ever since that day, it seemed like Yoongi was more affectionate than ever, never hesitating to compliment Jimin whenever he got the chance. It never felt forced though, never out of pity, it just seemed as though there was no longer anything between them, no shy awkwardness or flustered silences to keep them at a distance.

Jimin hummed in contentment, pulling away after a second so he could ask what it was that brought them in.

“Jungkook was getting bored at home, so we thought we could come visit for a coffee and some hot chocolate.”

“And cake!”

Jimin nodded, hopping back behind the counter so he could put their order through the cash register. He felt much more confident with it now that it was Yoongi and Jungkook as opposed to a line of grumpy businessmen. There was a flash and Jimin’s head shot up to see Yoongi lowering his phone with a smug look, “Did you just take a picture of me?”

“Yeah. First day at work that deserves to be documented.” he turned the screen so that Jimin could see the picture he had taken. His head down and lips pouted in concentration. “Besides, you looked beautiful so…”

And there was that too, Jimin noted in a daze, as Yoongi looked off to the side, face red. There was always an attraction between them, but these past few weeks had brought something out between them that teetered dangerously close to longing. Yoongi would flirt often, small and harmless and never failing to leave them both incredibly shy.

“Thank’s” he murmured, distracting himself with finishing their order, accepting the cash Yoongi handed over with a small smile. “I’ll have your drinks ready in a second.”

Jungkook let out an excited, “Yay!” before rushing off to claim an empty table off to the side, Holly tugged at the leash in Yoongi’s hand and the alpha unclipped him so that he could chase after Jungkook with an excited yipp.

“So, how are you finding it?”

“Really good! I'm kinda slow but my boss is super nice and ugh.” Jimin took a deep breath, as if to contain all the excitement filling every inch of his body, “Thank you so much Yoongi. For everything.”

Yoongi smiled brightly, wide and gummy and Jimin was so painfully enamoured. He blushed, turning away to grab two empty mugs off the side, “You get back to Kook, I’ll bring your drinks over in a minute. Yoongi nodded, peeling himself away from the counter to dash over to Jungkook who was teasing Holly with a plastic straw, Jimin gave himself a second to regard the little family warmly, they truly were beyond precious to him.

It took him a solid five minutes to finish their drinks, and if he was slightly more generous with the whipped cream on Jungkook's hot chocolate- well no one needed to know. He placed the mugs onto a tray, taking a second to find the prettiest slice of gateau before placing that next to them. He was just about to take it over to their table when a smiling couple walked in with a chime, he sighed, fixing his best customer service smile, ready to take their order when Seokjin slipped in behind the register before him.

“It’s time for your break now Jimin, why don't you help yourself to another slice and sit with your mate for a while.”

“Oh! He’s not my mate!” Jimin flushed down to his toes, the thought more appealing then he cared to admit. “We’re just friends!”

“Okay sure. Go sit with your friend that’s been looking at you all starry eyed since the second he walked in. Go go,” he shooed him off without another word, scoffing at the word ‘friends’ before turning to the couple.

Still beyond embarrassed, Jimin grabbed a slice of carrot cake for himself before hurrying over to the table. Jungkook was ecstatic at the sight of his cake and the mountain of whipped cream on his drink, he was even more thrilled when he learnt Jimin was allowed to sit with them for a while. He crawled happily into his lap, settling down with a little wiggle before digging into his cake.

“Jimin hyung, your job is so much cooler than daddy’s”

“Oh yeah?” Yoongi faked offence, Jungkook merely giggled around a spoon full of chocolate, and Jimin, impossibly, was happier than ever.

 

~

 

It became common place for Yoongi and Jungkook to come and visit on the weekends, sometimes Jungkook would come in with Hoseok whenever Yoongi was called into work, but more often than not, it was Yoongi and Jungkook- Holly in tow, that would come and spend the better half of an hour at the cafe.

After a few weeks of it, Seokjin had also encouraged his mate Namjoon to come in with their eight year old, Taehyung. The child was infinitely enamoured by Jungkook and Holly and the two pups were instant friends. Taehyung was a bright and cheerful young omega, quick to charm everyone around him with his sunny smile and bright personality, and Jungkook was no different. Jimin and Yoongi couldn't get enough of watching Jungkook change from his regular goofy self into a shy mess whenever he was around his older friend.

At some point play dates at the cafe turned into playdates at the Kims household, or Yoongi’s apartment and sometimes even Jimin’s. Hoseok would occasionally join them whenever he was free and the seven of them were fast friends.

Jimin had never felt more fulfilled.

Occasionally, Jimin would be asked to babysit, and Taehyung was usually a plus one during slumber parties. Those evenings were filled with dancing, Jungkook started off with his favourite hip hop tracks, songs he shared a love for with his father. Taehyung would scrunch his nose up at first but Jungkook would inevitably charm his new friend and Jimin into dancing along.

It was on one such night, where Yoongi was hosting a sleepover with Taehyung that they ended up in Jimin’s apartment for a while. Taehyung had just discovered Jimin’s vinyls and his past as a ballet dancer and was so overwhelmingly enamoured he could barely control himself as he demonstrated a clumsy pirouette.

Jimin beamed, heart full as he stepped in a fixed Taehyung's form, the young omega more serious than the situation called for when it came to perfecting his turn. Jungkook watched on slack jawed, where previously he had zero interest in ballet, suddenly more determined than ever to learn.

Jimin shared a knowing look with the Yoongi, the alpha was obviously conflicted about his feelings regarding Jungkook's puppy crush on Taehyung, still he couldn't help but admit it was sweet to see the little alpha fussing after Taehyung as though the sun had never shone brighter. He would almost always share a couple bites of his snacks with him, following him around the house, offering him his shiniest toys and brightest coloured legos.

He would shower Taehyung in affection, but would almost always clam up like a lock whenever Taehyung directed that same affection his way. Taehyung had decided he was absolutely in love with Jungkook's hair, would take immense joy in tying it up into little sprouting pigtails and Jungkook would sit stock still as he allowed him to play for as long as he wanted to.

It was by far the sweetest thing Jimin had ever seen, and his heart would swell every time they would grow weepy when it was time to inevitably part ways.

He felt much the same way whenever he would finish a shift at the cafe and have to bid Seokjin and the other staff goodbye. He had grown immeasurably close to his boss, the elder man instantly taking Jimin under his wing. On the days Yoongi was unable to visit, Jimin would take his break in Seokjin’s office where they would gossip and chat and waste time in a way that was so frivolous and easy Jimin never wanted to stop. Seokjin would often complain about Namjoon’s long hours at work; as a lawyer in one of Daegu’s top firms, he was more often than not wrapped up in a case he couldn't talk about. Seokjin’s favourite pastime was to bemone how lonely and frustrated he was only to melt instantly as soon as Namjoons name lit up his phone screen with a call.

Jimin would giggle every time, never missing a chance to tease him about how grossly in love he and his mate were with each other. Seokjin wouldn't hesitate for a second to turn it back onto Jimin, teasing him about Yoongi so much Jimin often had to leave the room in order to re compose himself. It was embarrassing yes, but he couldn't help but love it secretly. Jimin had never really had the chance to explore that giddy, shy stage of a romance, where friends would nudge and poke and tease. It was sweet, and innocent and pure in a way he had never had, and everytime Yoongi came to walk home with him on the days their shifts coincided, he would blush and giggle at the way Seokjin would send him off with a knowing grin.

Things with Seokjin were different, and the man, while strikingly beautiful and intimidating with his looks and height and perfect family, was so outwardly goofy and sometimes even embarrassing, Jimin couldn't help but treasure every second of the time he spent with him.

Things weren’t alway idyllic of course. Working in a cafe on one of the busiest districts in Daegu wasn’t for the faint of heart. But after almost seven months of working there Jimin had gotten used to dealing with fussy, angry and sometimes even leery customers. The first time an Alpha had taken a swipe at Jimin’s ass as he passed by Jimin had scurried by, heart racing; The last thing he wanted to do was cause a scene in front of Seokjin’s customers. Instead, he fixed a strained but polite smile and continued to serve as usual,laughing off his crude attempts at flirting with a grimace.

As soon as Seokjin had found out, no doubt noticing what was happening on the cctv set up in his office, well, suffice to say, a scene was made.

He had practically burst out of the back room onto the main floor, striding up to the alpha with barely concealed rage as he slapped the fork full of cake out of his mouth. The alpha had stood up angrily, a whole two heads taller then Seokjin himself, but where Jimin cowered back in fright, the older omega had squared his shoulder, sticking his chin up in defiance, unflinching as the alpha spat cruel words and abuse.

“The next time you step foot in my cafe. The moment you so much as look at one of my employees, you’ll be leaving this place in cuffs I swear it.” The alpha left, moving to grab his coffee only for Seokjin to grab the to-go cup and toss it in the bin before he could.

Jimin was blown away, seeing how confidently Seokjin had gone head to head with the kind of alpha jimin had nightmares about.

“This is my cafe Jimin. This is our space and we own it. No one can touch you here I swear it.”

From that point on Jimin had promised himself never to let anyone take advantage of his fears again. Whenever he was met with a less than friendly customer, he would square his shoulders and stand his ground no matter how scared he was.

But sometimes, that wasn’t enough. Sometimes, customers were scary in a way that wasn't so easily confronted.

Jimin side eyed the weedy beta sitting in the corner of the cafe. He was skinny and lanky in a way that was outwardly unassuming and unthreatening. He had started coming regularly a few weeks ago, almost every other day and while that wasn't at all weird in and of itself, Jimin had caught him staring one too many times to be comfortable.

And he didn't want to give voice to the thought- because he wasn't 100% sure and the last thing he wanted was to feed into his fears and sound paranoid- but he swore he had seen the man hanging around the neighborhood by the apartment complex.

He would come in most days, order the cheapest drink on their menu, sometimes even a sandwich and sit at the cafe for upwards of an hour, rarely more than two. He was there today, and Jimin was more than a little uncomfortable. He had taken to cleaning the coffee machine and taking inventory around the back, allowing one of the other baristas- a sixteen year old named Minah, to take his place at the register.

That could only keep him busy for so long though, inevitably, he found himself back out front when Minah was set to take her break and that’s where everything seemed to come to a head. Jimin was painfully aware of the man in the corner, couldn't help but notice him in his peripheral every other second. So when the man raised his arm, phone in had as if to take a selfie, Jimin knew he was taking a picture of him instead.

He finished taking the order from the woman in front of him, moving off to make her drink in a hurry. There was no one else in the line behind her so, as soon as he had handed over her order, he was off, into Seokjin’s office nervously.

Seokjin was on the phone when he came, he frowned as soon as he noticed the tight expression on Jimin’s face, ending the call almost immediately with a polite apology and a promise to call back.

“That man. The one I told you about.” Jimin was pacing in front of the desk, frustration etched into every inch of his body, “I swear he’s been stalking me and just now. I know he just took a picture of me.”

Seokjin was at the desktop in a second, reversing the camera feed for a second before Jimin pointed out the movement. Seokjin sighed, slumping in his chair, “Chim, from here it looks like he could have been taking a selfie-”

“Seokjin please- I swear I’m not making this up.”

“I know! You know I wouldn't hesitate to go out there and make a scene but if he really wasn't taking a picture of you…”

“I know, I get it, it’s embarrassing and bad for business but I'm sure about this one. I wouldn't be here if i wasn't.”

Seokjin thought for a second, looking into Jimin’s eyes before straightening up in his chair. “Right then.” he declared standing up and moving towards the door. Jimin was behind him in a second, both of them striding up to the single seat table in the corner.

The man noticed their steady approach, straightening his back just as they arrived at his table. “C-can I help you?”

Seokjin smiled tightly, “Yes, I'm sorry sir but I’m going to have to ask to see your phone for a second.”

He was truly nervous then, and that’s when Jimin knew he had been right. It seemed Seokjin was on the same page, and his posture was noticeably stronger now, anger creasing the dip in his brow.

“Why?” The man attempted to gather his things in a hurry but Seokjin was quick to step in his way.

“Sir, I have reason to think you’ve been taking pictures of one of my employees without their consent. Your phone unlocked please, or i'm afraid I’ll have to call the police.”

That seemed to do the trick, the man slumped in his chair, unlocking his phone, moving to open up an app but Seokjin cleared his throat sharply, causing the man to flinch and hand the phone over, head down guiltily.

Jimin didn't even need to look to know that his picture was there, but what he wasn't expecting was for Seokjin to swear under his breath before slamming the phone, screen up on the table in anger.

“Who is that number that you sent the picture to?”

“What!” Jimin looked down at the phone screen and sure enough, there were four different pictures taken of him from the past hour, all sent to an unsaved number. There was no other messages in the thread save for a simple and chilling, “Thank you.” sent less than five minutes ago.

“Who is it?”

“Just a f-friend. I swear- I'm sorry!” the man was cowering before Seokjin, frighteningly beautiful as he was. Jimin would have found it satisfying if it wasn't for the uneasy feeling rolling in the pit of his stomach.

“Jimin. Do you want to press for harassment?”

“N-No.” Jimin was uncertain and nervous for the first time in ages and he hated it. He just wanted the whole situation to be over with. Seokjin looked as though he was going to protest, but ultimately decided not to push him. Instead he swiped the phone back from the table, making quick work to delete the photos before handing it back to the shame faced man before him.

“Don't ever let me catch you around here again do you understand?”

And with that the man was gone. Seokjin had taken Jimin back into his office after making sure there was someone there to watch the main floor.

“Are you okay Chim?”

“Huh? Oh, yeah… i'm fine.” Seokjin sat him down in his chair, brushing his hair back gently from his face with a small frown.

“Jimin that was really creepy, and he’s been bothering you for a while now. I understand if you want to go home early today.”

Now that Seokjin had mentioned it, he wanted nothing more then to retreat back into the safety of his home and he slumped defeatedly in the chair, nodding his head with a sigh. Seokjin hummed, moving to take his phone out of his pocket.

“Who are you calling?”

“Yoongi.”

“Jin! I'm fine you don't need to call Yoongi-”

“Yes I do. You said that you felt like he was stalking you and I am not about to send you home alone five minutes after that creep was kicked out. No way, shut up. I'm calling Yoongi.

 

~

 

Yoongi was there in less than half an hour, still grubby from the garage and he burst through the door into Seokjin’s office.

“Jimin! Are you okay?”

“I'm fine!” He stood up, allowing Yoongi to pull him into a warm hug as he did more often than not these days. This hug though, was noticeably tighter and Jimin gave Seokjin the stink eye over Yoongi’s shoulder. “Seriously Yoongi, I'm fine, just kinda shaken up.”

“Okay,” Yoongi nodded, then repeated as if he was convincing himself, “Okay let’s go home then. Jungkook should be back from Hobi’s in a few hours.”

“Gives us time to make something nicer than Kimbap for dinner then.”

“Yeah, we can use my kitchen if you like?”

Seokjin groaned exaggeratedly behind them and Jimin blushed when he realised just how domestic they had sounded. Making plans for what they were going to feed Jungkook tonight, as if they were a family. Admittedly, Yoongi and Jimin’s apartments had started to feel more like a shared unit as opposed to two seperate homes. A few of Jungkook's toys had made themselves at home in Jimin’s apartment alongside more than a few stolen hoodies and shirts. Yoongi’s apartment was in a similar state, sweaters and books and a few of Jimin's cosmetics nestling in between the clutter of a family.

Yoongi was clearly thinking the same thing as he smiled sweetly at Jimin, not hesitating for a second before tangling his fingers in between Jimin's - Jimin had noticed recently, that Yoongi was happiest when holding his or Jungkook’s hand. Yoongi squeezed his hand gently, tugging him towards the door with a quick goodbye seokjin's way.

It was chilly outside and Jimin still shivered at the feeling of being watched. Still, things never felt quite as scary when Yoongi was by his side.

 

~

 

Jimin was just about to get ready for bed when there was a knock on his door. He knew Jungkook was sleeping over at the Kim’s tonight, and if he was correct, then it would be Yoongi on the other side of the door right now.

Jungkook’s first sleepover had Yoongi stubbornly refusing to cry on Jimin couch when he admitted how much he missed his son. Jimin had giggled, cuddling close and teasing and cooing at Yoongi till he laughed wetly. They had spent that night watching movie after movie till they both inevitably knocked out at around three. It was Jungkook’s fifth sleepover now and it was a familiar thing for Yoongi to come knocking on Jimin’s door whenever the quiet got too much for him to bare.

Jimin skipped over to the door, not ashamed to admit that he had planned ahead and put on his cutest pyjamas and fuzziest socks. By now, he knew Yoongi got especially sweet the softer Jimin looked and he used that to his advantage whenever he got the chance. Like now, he skipped over to the door, ruffling his hair up at the front and putting on a sleepy expression before pulling it open.

As expected, it was Yoongi stood on the other side, and while he paused for a moment to take in Jimin's efforts, he ultimately won in the Make Him Flustered showdown. Jimin bit his lip as he tried to subtly take in Yoongi’s appearance. He did not look like he was ready for a night watching movies. No way.

His dark hair was artfully tousled, falling in soft waves over his forehead. He was wearing his usual ripped black skinnys, with a light hoodie under a leather jacket. He looked every bit the degenerate alpha Jimin had been so afraid of at first, only now he knew this was the same man that almost cried because he missed his son. Jimin’s heart sang at every contradiction.

“Hey Jimin, was thinking maybe we could go out somewhere tonight?” He was leaning against Jimin’s door frame, angling his body so that he could halfway cage Jimin up against the wall. Jimin didn't miss the way he left things open enough for Jimin to escape if he wanted to.

He slinked just a little bit closer.

“Oh? Where to?”

“I have something planned but it’s kinda a surprise.”

Jimin hummed, pretending to think for a second even though they both knew he had already made up his mind the second Yoongi had asked. “Okay, just let me get dressed.” He agreed, walking back into his apartment, trusting Yoongi to follow behind him and close the door. “And what’s the dress code for tonight? No good delinquent?” he called back before closing the bedroom door behind him. He could hear Yoongi snickering in the other room, and he smiled as he made his way over to his wardrobe.

“Something warm and old!” he yelled.

“Old!?”

“Yeah, something you don't mind getting dirty!”

Jimin frowned in confusion, but decided not to question it, he knew he could trust Yoongi, would ultimately love anything he had planned. In the end, he pulled out a pair of dark jeans a grey Tee and a classic red flannel.

As soon as he stepped out, Yoongi smiled in approval, grabbing Jimin’s hand and dragging him out the door.

They walked hand in hand over to the bus stop, waiting for the same bus they took every day to get into town. Jimin was more than a little confused, but decided he enjoyed the feeling of Yoongi's hand enveloping his too much to question anything. He let go only once, while they got onto the bus, practically the only ones on it this late in the evening.

As expected, they got off at the same stop, and Jimin allowed Yoongi to take his hand once more and guide him to the left. Five minutes into their walk and Jimin recognized this rout as the one to the garage Yoongi worked at. Suddenly his request for old comfortable clothing made sense and Jimin pouted.

“Yoongi, why are you taking me to your garage?”

“You’ll see, grumpy.” Jimin huffed in mock offence to the nickname, and Yoongi simply laughed softly, giving Jimin’s hand a little squeeze in apology, “It’s gonna be fun I swear.”

Jimin relented, falling quiet again as they walked.

When they finally reached the garage Yoongi had to let go of Jimin’s hand so he could pull up the shutters and open the gate to the main yard, locking it up behind them once they were inside. Jimin let Yoongi guide him through the cars and junk around them, out back into the main yard. Yoongi's stepped away then, over to a small generator by the doorway. He shrugged his jacket off before throwing it over the generator and flipping a switch. A string of lights lit up overhead, illuminating the yard with a soft hazy yellow. 

Jimin had been here enough times to know that the lights were definitely a new addition, and the yard had never looked so tidy. Out back had been mostly cleared away save for a huge mess of junk, broken electronics and even an old car that had been piled up in the middle. Propped up against a broken television were two sledgehammers, a crowbar and two sets of safety equipment.

“No offense Yoongi, but what the hell is this?” Jimin walked up to the pile, grabbing the smaller pair of safety gloves off the top of the television.

Yoongi grinned, pulling the other pair on with a gummy smile. “Well, we’re clearing up the yard tomorrow, getting rid of all this trash and I thought, I don't know, thought it would be kinda fun to smash some shit up before that happened?” he seemed to lose steam towards the end, growing progressively more unsure as he went on with his explanation. “I mean now that I dragged you all the way out here it sounds kinda stupid- i'm sorry-”

“It’s not stupid!” Jimin was quick to assure him, pulling on one of the helmets and grabbing the crowbar eagerly. “Lord knows I have some feelings of frustration to let out.” He smacked the crowbar against one gloved hand a few times and Yoongi was grinning again. “This definitely beats watching you crying after Jungkook.” he grinned cheekily, and Yoongi pushed him gently. 

“I told you! I wasn't crying!”

“Yeah okay baby boy. Let’s smash some shit up.”

And that was that. Yoongi took a second to secure the helmet on Jimin's head, pushing his hair back gently before clipping it snugly under his chin. Jimin grinned, waiting for Yoongi to secure his own helmet before they both slipped on matching goggles and went to town.

It was exhilarating.

Jimin never thought he could find so much relief through destroying things he knew had no value. He smashed up the television till it was nothing but chipped plastic and glass under his shoes, the same for a microwave and a fair amount of dishes. Finally he moved up to the car right in the very middle of the lot. The crowbar came down heavy against the windscreen on the car, bouncing off of it with nothing but a small chip where it hit. Yoongi laughed at the affronted look on Jimin's face.

“Car windows are harder to smash then the movies make it look!” he said, coming up to where Jimin was standing. He thought Yoongi was going to smash it then, instead, he took the crowbar and handed Jimin one of the sledgehammers with a mad grin. “Try this instead.”

Jimin took a second to acclimate to the weight of the hammer, twisting the handle in his hands a few times before bringing it up and letting it fall heavy against the centre of the windscreen and true enough, it splinted into a spider web of shattered glass. One more swing and one more hit and the web fell through into the car with a satisfying crash, Jimin couldn't hold back the maniacal cackle as he went to town on on of the side mirrors. Yoongi was laughing uncontrollably behind him, kicking at a small tea pot and watching it smash against one of the wheels of the car.

What mad and heart racing joy. Jimin had never in his life had fun like this. So far removed from the way he was brought up, from the prim and proper rules of his life with his parents and Alexander. This was raw and primal and senseless. This was one of the most euphoric moments of his life, out here in the middle of a dark and dirty yard, his favourite man at his side as they destroyed everything in their path.

It must have gone on for ages before Jimin’s arms began to give up on him, he dropped the sledge hammer with a heavy thump, removing his goggles and helmet before slinking over to Yoongi who laughed, opening his arms wide so that Jimin could collapse into them. 

“Ugh that was so cool but i'm so tired now.” Jimin groaned, smushing his face against Yoongi’s chest, feeling it rumble with laughter under his cheek. They both took a few moments to catch their breaths, chests heaving in exhaustion. 

“I should think a dancer would have more stamina than this!” The alpha tightened his arms around Jimin and before he knew it he was being lifted off the ground and spun around in circles. Yoongi held him close as they danced their way out from the pile of rubble beneath their feet. By the time they stopped, Jimin was breathless, totally overwhelmed with adrenalin and pure unadulterated happiness.

Suddenly, he was looking up at Yoongi’s beaming face, the alphas big warm hands at his waist and Jimin was done.

It was over for him.

There was only one thing his mind would allow him to do at this point in time.

Before he could think too much about it, he was twisting his hands in the lapels of Yoongi’s jacket and pulling him down into a kiss that screamed all the longing of the past year behind it.

Yoongi was frozen for a second before he was kissing back.

Jimin all but melted against him as the alpha brought one hand up to cup his face, tilting it up so that he could come back in at a better angle. Jimin’s heart was so full it could burst, and he swore a part of it managed to escape through their joined lips to settle snugly next to Yoongi’s. With one kiss, Jimin was gone. Yoongi had stolen a piece of him he would never get back. Not that he ever wanted it when he could have this instead.

“God baby.” Yoongi mumbled against his lips, the rough tone of his voice sending a shiver through his body, “Jimin, you have no idea how long I’ve wanted this-”

“Doesn't matter, I've wanted it for just as long.” Jimin admitted, pulling him back in for another kiss.

Yoongi groaned and Jimin let his mouth part willing at the prod of the alphas tongue against his lips. His toes curled in his shoes as Yoongi pushed impossibly closer, the hand that wasn't cupping his face finding its way into the back pocket of Jimin’s jeans. Jimin had to pull away with a moan, the feel of Yoongi’s hand on him almost too much to bare.

“God, Yoongi-” he allowed himself to get cut off by another kiss, groaning into it before finally pulling back and pushing gently at Yoongi’s chest, “Yoongi, shit, slow down-”

Yoongi stepped back easily, pulling his hand out of Jimin's pocket and settling high on his waist as he blinked down happily. Jimin couldn't help but snort at the blissed out look on his face.

“Did kissing me really make you that happy?”

Yoongi nodded, burying his head in the crook of Jimin’s neck and taking a deep breath. “I'm so happy I could cry-” Jimin stiffened at the waver in Yoongi’s voice.

“N- no way are you crying… Yoongi?!” Jimin pulled back, shocked to see that yes, absolutely, Yoongi’s face was flushed and red, eyes welling up as he pulled Jimin into an all consuming hug, pressing a few gentle kisses on top of his head before hooking his chin over him and all but purring in contentment.

“I don't think you could ever understand how precious you are to me Park Jimin.”

 

~

 

Surprisingly, nothing really changed since the kiss.

They saw each other as often as ever- everyday. Yoongi still held his hand every chance he got and they continued to eat dinner together with Jungkook every evening. Absolutely nothing had changed except for the fact that Yoongi would kiss him in greeting every morning, knocking on his door even if their paths weren’t set to meet that day. Jimin would practically fly over to the door in order to accept his morning kiss before seeing Yoongi on his way, all but melting against the doorframe as he watched him walk away.

So yeah, life was good, Jimin was happy.

He had the perfect balance between home and work, friends and romance. This was what he had been missing all those years and to have it all now was the sweetest victory he could imagine.

Telling Jungkook had been less dramatic then they had thought it would be. They were out by the park near the complex- the very same park Yoongi had tried to single handedly refurbish for Jungkook a few years back- taking Holly for a walk. It was chilly out but they were all bundled up well, Jungkook's face was barely visible under his hat and scarf, he had to twist his whole body around just to talk to them.

Yoongi and Jimin were sat on one of the benches overlooking a large stretch of grass as Jungkook chased Holly around the field. The poodle was more than happy to double back in his, racing through his legs and nipping at the hem of his coat while Jungkook all but shrieked in excitement.

Jimin shivered, just slightly, a particularly brisk wind tickling the back of his hair. Yoongo took his hand without a word, bringing it up to his lips to press a gentle kiss against his knuckles. The small act made Jimin more giddy than it had any right to do and he shuffled impossibly closer, leaning up to press a quick peck against the bottom of Yoongi’s jaw before resting his head against Yoongi’s shoulder and turning his attention back to Jungkook and Holly. Yoongi’s thumb traced feather light circles against the back of his hand.

Jimin’s mind was drifting, basking in this gentle contentment until Jungkook was trekking his way tiredly to the bench. The adults straightened up at his approach, Jimin slipping his hand free from Yoongi’s and Jungkook scrambled up into his father's lap.

“Daddy, let’s go home now I think Holly is tired.” The dog in question was quite happily chasing a squirrel over to a tree. Yoongi hummed, kissing the top of Jungkook's head before sitting him up so he could look him in the eye.

“Okay baby. But first, I need to tell you something really important.”

Jimin’s eyes widened at that, not expecting Yoongi to bring it up so soon. It had barely been a week since their kiss and Jimin was suddenly overcome with nerves. Yoongi caught his eye over Jungkook's shoulder,giving Jimin a nod as if to say, ‘it’s time.’ Jimin nodded numbly back, and Yoongi smiled gently before facing Jungkook again.

“Kookie baby, how would you feel if me and your Jimin hyung went out on a date sometime?”

Jungkook blinked, trying to shake the sleepy blanket that had overcome him in order to understand what exactly it was his father was trying to tell him.

“On a date like-” He yawned, “On a date like, you wanna give him kisses?” Jimin’s face was impossibly red, flushing so warm he doubted he needed a coat anymore. But Yoongi was unaffected, smiling brightly down at Jungkook as he hummed in agreement. “Daddy is Jimin hyung gonna be your boyfriend now?” he was looking between them now, regarding them with wide eyes and Jimin dipped his head down to press a little kiss against the pups forehead.

“Only if you say it’s okay kookie.”

The thought was enough to chill Jimin down to the bone. If for whatever reason Jungkook was against it, what would they do then? Go back to being just friends? With the depth of Jimin's feeling for Yoongi he didn't know if that was even possible. He sent a worried look Yoongi’s way but the alpha was the picture of ease, looking down at his son with a gentle fondness.

Jungkook just nodded, sleepiness overwhelming him to the point where he could do nothing else but rest his cheek against Yoongi’s chest. Still, he angled his face up so that he could look up at Jimin, holding his tiny hand out for the omega to hold. “My daddy always makes me happy so-” he broke off once again with a big yawn, his whole body shuddering with it as he wiggled closer to Yoongi, “He can always make Jimin hyung happy.”

Yoongi broke out onto quiet chuckles at the dazed look on Jimin’s face.

God he was happy.

 

~

 

That same night, Jungkook had demanded they have a sleepover and that’s how Jimin found himself curled up in their bed, Jungkook sleeping blissfully in the middle while Yoongi held his hand on the pillow between them. Jimin could tell by the way the hold got progressively weaker that Yoongi was already following his son into unconsciousness.

Jimin couldn't sleep. He could feel Jungkook's little breaths against his collarbone. The scent of the two of them washing over him in an endless supply. He was dizzy with it, overwhelmed with just how perfect everything felt.

It made him antsy, made him nervous.

Like it was all somehow disgustingly undeserved.
The scar across his lower stomach itched.

Oh.

Stupid, stupid, so stupid but all it took was for Jungkook to wriggle just an inch closer, for him to throw his little arms around Jimin's neck in a sleepy cuddle for Jimin to cry. For everything to be too much suddenly.

“Y-Yoongi-” his chest seemed to cave underneath the tiny weight of Jungkook’s breath and he choked, “Yoongi!” his whisper came out strained and strangled and Jimin was surprised Yoongi had heard it, groaning as his mind came back to himself, “Yoongi can you- god, can you grab Jungkook please?” he was dangerously close to hyperventilating and Yoongi must have heard it in his voice because he was there instantly, prying the sleepy pup away from Jimin and settling him back down on the pillow between them.

Jimin was up in an instant. Walking out of the room before Yoongi could even say anything.

Why? Why was everything so much so suddenly? Jimin paced in front of the couch, fanning his face with his hands as he tried to catch his breath.

Yoongi was there suddenly, grabbing his wrists and pulling Jimin into his chest with a gentle tug, kissing him on the top of his head as he whispered soft assurances into his hair. “Jimin, baby take a breath, come on. What’s wrong?”

“I'm sorry it’s just its so much?” Jimin had his face buried in the crook between Yoongi’s neck and shoulder, grateful that his breaths were starting to ease somewhat the longer he focused on his scent and the steady thrum of his heart beneath his hands. “God Yoongi I don't know why? I was so happy and then- and then I just felt sick? I felt so guilty? It’s only been a year and I love Jungkook so much I love this so much how can I be happy so quickly after losing him?” and there it was, the root of it all.

Jimin pulled his wrists out of Yoongi’s hold, wrapping his arm around his stomach as his scar burned. He was suddenly hyper aware of that mess of healed tissues maring his body, a monument to a battle he lost. He was crying then, and he could just about make out that Yoongi was right there with him, wrapping his arms around his crumpled form and crying his own tears.

“It’s okay Jimin. Its okay to be happy.” Yoongi pressed wet kisses to every inch of Jimin’s face he could reach; his cheek, his forehead, his nose. Jimin’s lips trembled against his as they shared a single fleeting kiss, salt on their tongues and grief on their hearts. Yoongi was everywhere, all around him, and while Jimin was loathed to see him cry, there was something cathartic about someone else grieving for his baby.

Jimin smiled, strained and trembling, bringing his hands up to cup Yoongi’s cheek, brushing his tears away with his thumbs as he brought their foreheads together.

“Yoongi, you are too good. Too good to me.”

“I hate seeing you cry, Jimin it destroys me.” Jimin laughed sadly, whispering an apology against Yoongi’s lips, assuring him that despite everything he was happy.

“You make everything better.”

“Jimin. Park Jimin.” Yoongi was kissing him again, firmer, more desperate. His lips twitched like he was fighting to say something, stuttering before trying again, “God. I love you, you know?”

It wasn't a revelation. It was the first time he had said it but Jimin had felt it in every touch, in every smile and hug and kiss. Jimin had felt it.

“I know.”

 

~

 

Everything came crashing down all at once.

Yoongi was driving out of town to pick up a car for the garage, Namjoon was busy with a particularly difficult case and Seokjin had come down with a flu so suddenly he was incapable of holding a simple conversation let alone watch his excitable seven year old.

So Jimin had Taehyung and Jungkook for the night. Which was fine, he had chaperoned quite a few sleepovers with the two, the only difference being that Yoongi wasn't there with him this time.

Still, the kids were more than happy to spend the night at Jimin’s apartment. They both found immense joy in playing with Jimin’s makeup. Taehyung had just finished painting Jungkook’s face with every color eyeshadow he could find, while the baby alpha sat happily, soaking up every bit of attention. Jimin sat off to the side, reading a book and checking in on them every now and then.

It couldn't be long now, for the food they had ordered to arrive.

Normally Jimin would cook for them, but he had finished his shift at the cafe late, the close down taking significantly longer than usual without Seokjin there to oversee everything. He had rushed home, barely making it before Hoseok had arrived to drop the children back off to him. Jimin had thanked him for keeping them all day, giving him a tight hug and sending him off with a slice of leftover cake he had saved from the cafe.

This kids were already pretty hungry. Grumpy with it and Jungkook had only stopped whining when Jimin had promised to order him whatever takeout he wanted.

That was almost forty minutes ago, so when the door knocked suddenly Jimin didn't think twice before opening it up to accept the food.
It wasn't the delivery man though.

There, holding the bag of food up to Jimin with a smug grin was the very last person on earth Jimin wanted to see.

With a choked gasp, Jimin moved to slam the door shut but Alex stepped his foot in the way before it could get further than an inch.

Jimin’s entire body went stiff with fear, every inch of him curling into submission he hadn't felt in what felt like a lifetime. He had to fight not to bow his head, to square his shoulders and demand for him to leave.

“Don't come any further I swear-”

“Or what? You’ll call the police? Baby you stole almost two and half million won from me.”

“Don't call me that!”

Alexanders expression shifted from one of smugness to one of barely concealed anger. The tightness of his jaw was something Jimin was frightfully familiar with. A traitorous whine escaped his lips as he stepped back to maintain a distance from the alpha that was steadily making his way into the apartment.

“Why not baby? Is your new alpha the only one that can call you that now?” Jimin heart dropped like a brick at the mention of Yoongi, It must have read clearly on his face and Alex scoffed with a shake of his head. “Okay, how about I call you thief instead? Useless, lying waste of space? Stupid, pathetic slut of an omega?” Every word was punctuated by a step too close and Jimin’s resolve crumbled into dust at his feet.

“I-i'm sorry-”

“Hyung?”

Jungkook came out from behind the couch, his little steps hesitant and he whined at the sight of Alex. He looked as though he wanted nothing more than to retreat back behind the couch where Taehyung was shaking behind a pillow. Jimin was overcome with a fear so blinding he was dizzy with it, breaking out of the submissive headspace Alex had so easily pushed him into.

“Jungkook. Take Taehyung and get into the bedroom.”

“But hyung-”

“Now Jungkook!” Jimin shouted so suddenly it made both children jump, Jungkook’s face crumpling instantly and in the next second he was hysterical. Walking closer to Jimin with his arm out, looking for comfort but Jimin couldn't have him here. He looked nervously up at Alex, as if he was going to lunge at any moment. The alpha just smiled patronisingly down at him, shrugging as if to say, ‘take you time.’

Jimin felt sick.

“Taehyung, listen to me. Take Kookie into my bedroom okay, close the door behind you.” they didn't move, Jungkook continued to shriek and Jimin wished he could disappear. “Right fucking now!”

His entire body was trembling, tension so high he felt as though he was going to be sick as he watched Taehyung scramble out from behind the couch, dragging Jungkook away and into the bedroom. The door closed behind them, muffling Jungkook's terrified cries only enough so that Jimin could hear the sound of Alexander walking up to him.

He all but crumbled at the touch of his hand against his shoulder. A heavy weight despite the fact that he merely held it there, squeezing his shoulder in a way that would have been comforting had it not been for the fact that this man had nearly killed him countless times before.

“I-I’ll pay you back, Alex, I swear-”

“Jimin, I don't give a fuck about the money” he bent down so that he could look Jimin in the eye. Jimin used to love that Alex was so much taller than him, but now it did nothing but bring terrified tears down his cheeks, “I work so hard for you and I come home to an empty house? Do you know how much that hurt?”

Jimin didn't say anything. He knew perfectly well what would happen if he did. So instead he bit his tongue and clenched his fist and tried in vain to stop the tears from falling, keeping his head down and gaze lowered as Alex ran his hand up into his hair.

“I missed you so much baby,” He tugged Jimin’s face up, pressing a harsh kiss against his lips ignoring Jimin’s growing struggles as he forced his tongue into his mouth. Jimin couldn't breath, bile burned the back of his throat as Alex slipped his other hand down to squeeze his ass painfully hard. Jimin could see where this was going and his struggles grew all the more desperate.

He squirmed, pushing at Alex desperately, his hands coming up to tug as hard as he could at his hair, biting down savagely at the intrusive tongue. He could taste blood in his mouth and Alex wretched back with a swear. He wiped at his mouth, looking down in disbelief at the smear of blood on his skin.

His hand found its way back in Jimin’s hair, tugging harshly so that he had no choice but to look him in the eye, “If you don't cooperate i’ll fucking kill you!” he spat, slapping Jimin with the back of his ringed hand, his head being whipped to the side by the force of it all.

Jimin was dizzy, the only thing keeping him upright was the fist in his hair, “Then kill me.” he would rather die then allow Alex to get anywhere near him again.

Alex struck him again, Jimin’s body crumbling like a house of cards against the hardwood floor. He wasn't so afraid anymore. This was familiar to him, despite everything, his mind still remembered how to shut down and ignore the pain ripping through his body as Alex came down on him like a ton of bricks.

“How dare you fucking leave me?”

Jimin had lost count as to how many times he had been kicked, he could feel his ribs ache and he had to put everything into breathing, into staying conscious.

“I’ll take that omega in there! Bet he’ll be beautiful when he’s older, prettier than you ever were-”

The words cut through the fog like a knife and Jimin was all too coherent. He could feel every blow but it didn't matter, he groaned, practically screaming in pain and rage as he struggled up to his knees, gripping onto the lapels of Alex’s shirt as he pulled himself into his raging face.

“I’ll kill you!” he spat, ignoring the way Alex fisted his hair again, retching his head back with so much force he felt his hair rip from his scalp. Still, he continued to scream scratching uselessly at him until he felt the skin of his neck give way to blood under his fingers. “You disgusting pig! I’ll fucking kill you!”

His vision was spotting, fading in and out of consciousness and he could distantly recognize the feeling of blood down his face, could hear Alex screaming alongside him, but nothing could stop him from clawing at Alex’s skin, his fingers digging into every bit of flesh he could latch onto. Jimin knew, he wouldn't have stopped until Alex killed him, he wouldn't have stopped had it not been for a sudden set of hands dragging him away from the man of his nightmares.

He slumped against the floor, blinking up at the ceiling, distantly hearing the sound of someone familiar.

He blinked again, the world momentarily clear and he felt someone shaking him desperately.

“Shit, shit, shit, Jimin? Jimin wake up! Shit can you hear me?”

Oh. It was Namjoon.

Disappointing, he would have liked to have seen Yoongi’s face before he went.

Oh well.

 

~

 

It had happened more times then he could count. Waking up in a hospital bed was something familiar to him. He didn't even have to open his eyes to know where he was.

Still, he forced his way through the lethargy of morphine and took in his surroundings. Namjoon and Seokjin were slumped in chairs against the wall, heads leaning against each other as they slept. Jimin knew this private room was more than likely their doing- Yoongi and Jimin could never afford it themselves.

Speaking of Yoongi, he could hear clattering coming from the floor and when he shifted his gaze he was graced by the sight of Yoongi sitting on the floor, playing quietly with Jungkook and Taehyung, murmuring too softly for Jimin to make out his words, but he knew he was praising Jungkook for his tower of legos. The small alpha was smiling, but he was much quieter than he would have been normally.

Jimin’s heart ached at the memory of the boys hysterical crying, the way he had tried to come close to him. He must have been so afraid. Must have heard every scream.

He whimpered at the memory, a single tear trailing down the corner of his eye as he processed everything that had happened.

Yoongi’s head whipped to the side at the noise and he was on his feet in a flash, alerting the kids who followed suite, scrambling over to Jimin’s bedside as if drawn by magnets.

Yoongi took his hand gently in his own, coming down to all but smother Jimin is desperate kisses. He was crying again. Jimin was sick of making him cry.

“Oh my god baby- are you okay, shit” He kissed him again, taking a moment to linger against his lips and breath in his scent that was slowly unfurling as Jimin’s consciousness cemented itself. They would have stayed there forever had it not been for Jungkook wriggling his way between them, clawing at the sheets and he tried to lift himself up into the bed.

Yoongi, swore, pulling Jungkook away with a warning, “Jungkook careful!” but the child was having none of it. He was crying again, reaching desperately for Jimin, small hands clenching against air and he struggled against his father. Jimin was crying too, forcing his body painfully up so that he was propped up straight against the pillows.

Yoongi looked as though he was about to have a heart attack as he placed Jungkook down onto the floor besides Taehyung- who up until this point, was utterly silent- in order to help Jimin settle himself.

“Jungkook, come here baby.” Yoongi opened his mouth to object but Jimin silenced him with a single look, “Please.”

Yoongi sighed, helping Jungkook up onto the bed and making sure he was mindful of the I.V attached to Jimin’s hand. The pup didn't care about any of it, and neither did Jimin. They were crying together, and even though it hurt, Jimin wanted nothing more then to hold the child close to him, muttering apologies into his hair and the pup continued to sob.

“Hyun I was so scared!” he wailed and Jimin could hear Taehyung sniffling quietly at his bedside. Jimin was about to call the omega up onto the bed too, but his parents had finally woken, rushing over to the bedside in an instant.

Namjoon scooped up Taehyung, letting the whimpering boy bury his face into his neck while Seokjin all but barreled past Yoongi to get to Jimin.

“Oh Chim! I was so worried, god are you okay? No- shut up of course you aren't- oh my god sweetie i'm so sorry-”

It was Namjoon who finally pulled the fretting omega away from him, a gentle hand on his shoulder all it took for Seokjin to whirl around, accepting Taehyung into his arms and allowing Yoongi to reclaim his place at the bedside. The whole time, Jungkook hadn't budged an inch, continuing to sob into Jimin’s chest.

“What happened?” Jimin croaked, his voice like nails on a chalkboard, “Are the kids okay? He- he didn't touch Taehyung did he?”

“No- “ Yoongi was quick to assure, but Jimin’s eyes were on Seokjin who had tightened his arms protectively around his son, eyes narrowed.

“Why? What the fuck was he going to do with my son?”

Jimin shook his head, he didn't want to voice it, especially in front of the already traumatized children. Somehow the tension in Seokjin’s jaw and tightness in Namjoon’s expression told him they had a pretty good idea as to what threats were made.

Jimin was up there with them, the disgust worming its way through his entire body. His fingers itched, he could vividly remember the feeling of tearing flesh and blood under his nails. It brought him a sick sort of satisfaction.

It was Yoongi who brought him back to the present, a gentle squeeze and a quiet reassurance.

“Taehyung used your phone to call Namjoon, and Namjoon called the police. That asshole is sitting in a cell as we speak and the kids are fine. The only one that was hurt was- was you-” Yoongi cut off with a cry, the only one aside from Jungkook still sobbing, “I should have been there-”

“Shut up!” Jimin cut him off vehemently, “This is not your fault, Yoongi none of us could have known this would happen.”

“Why are you comforting me?” Yoongi laughed wetly, “Why are me and Jungkook the only ones crying huh?”

Jimin pressed a kiss against the pup clinging stubbornly against him, crying and scared but he didn't have a single scratch on him. He rubbed a soothing hand against his back before he answered.

“I protected my family. I have nothing to cry about.”

 

~

 

Jimin left the courtroom more exhausted than he had any right to be.

He sighed, taking in a deep breath and Namjoon patted him on the back with a smile.

It had been a long two months, but finally, finally, Jimin was free. It had been Seokjin’s idea to press charges, he had refused to allow Jimin to let this pass without some sort of justice. The moment the other omega had learnt about Jimin’s relationship with Alex he had exploded until Jimin had agreed to pursue legal charges. Namjoon demanding to work as his lawyer pro bono.

Of course, Alex hadn’t gone down easy. His own army of lawyers coming at them at every angle. Jimin stopping his contraception without consent, stealing money, permanently scarring his face and neck- Yoongi was more than a little bit proud of that one- and more than a dozen false accusations of abuse and manipulation.

It hadn't been looking good for a while, but Soomin had come out of nowhere with a stolen copy of the house security tape, taken at the scene of Jimin’s miscarriage and from that point on the judge and jury were firmly on side with the omega.

And that was all behind them now. Alex was faced with six years in prison to be served in Korea, followed by a permanent ban from the country and just under 100 million won worth of compensation to be paid back to Jimin in a lump sum.

Jimin smiled brightly up at Namjoon as they made their way down the steps of the courthouse. The alpha had truly worked wonders, up against an army of private hires. Jimin couldn't help but pull him into a hug as soon as they reached the bottom.

"Thanks you for everything Namjoon. Im so lucky to have you"

“My pleasure, and Jimin? You did wonderfully” He muttered, hugging him tightly and Jimin was giddy with relief.

He pulled away the second he heard a shriek behind them, Jungkook barrelling into him as Taehyung all but jumped into his father's arms. Yoongi, Seokjin and Hoseok jogged to catch up. Jimin was holding Jungkook on his hip when Yoongi swooped in to press a great wet kiss against his lips. Jungkook practically exploded in glee, wriggling about until Yoongi pulled back, giving the pup space to plant his own litter of kisses all over Jimin's face.

“Jimin! God i'm so proud of you!” Yoongi was itching to kiss him again but Jimin was somewhat preoccupied by the excited pup in his arms.

“Please! It was all Namjoon.”

“Nonsense.” Namjoon and Seokjin interjected at the same time, and Seokjin came forward to hug Jimin tightly, Jungkook quite happy to be squished in the middle of it. “Not many people are brave enough to stand up there like you did Jimin. And even when they do, they don't do it with quite as much dignity as you did.”

“Thank you Seokjin, I- I couldn't have done it without you guys at my side.”

“Well. That’s just what family is for.”

 

~

 

The ice cream parlour was filled to capacity but Jimin was in a world of his own.

It had been Jungkook’s idea. He didn't fully understand everything that had happened but he knew today was a day to celebrate. So he had tugged stubbornly on his fathers sleeve, demanding they go out for ice cream so that Jimin knew they loved him.

Well, how was Yoongi to argue with that?

So here they were, pressed up and cramped on a small table in the corner of a busy high street parlour as Jungkook powered through his second scoop of chocolate ice cream. Yoongi fretting as he struggled to keep the pup as clean as possible. Jimin’s own scoop was melting away in his cup, untouched as he couldn't tear his eyes away from the two alphas that had well and truly stolen his heart.

Today marked his first real day free from the shadow of his past. Alex was gone, would be gone forever now and Jimin never could have imagined he could ever be as happy as he was right now in this moment.

Yoongi looked so beautiful, bathed in the stark fluorescent lighting of the parlour. For once he wasn't in jeans, dressed smart for the court hearing. His white shirt was slightly creased, unbuttoned at the top, tie loosened and sleeves rolled up to keep them away from the grubby hands of his son. He was so effortlessly captivating, the soft curve of his jaw, the bow of his lips drawing Jimin in like a beacon.

And, his scent, god his scent was everywhere. No doubt thanks to the large oversized grey hoodie he had relinquished to Jimin halfway through their walk to the parlour. Jimin had accepted it gratefully, more than happy to have Yoongi’s scent drown out the one from the courtroom. It brought him great comfort, and he knew that was why Yoongi had brought it.

“What are you staring at humm?” Yoongi was smiling shyly, not looking at Jimin as he spoke, busy wiping the chocolate off from Jungkook’s pouting face.

“Min Yoongi.”

“Yes?”

“I love you terribly.”

Yoongi flushed, and the redness didn't go unnoticed by Jungkook who giggled, squeezing his father's cheeks with sticky fingers.

“Love you terribly Daddy! We love you terribly!”

“I think that’s something we should be saying to your hyung don't you think?”

Jungkook was serious then, scrambling over to Jimin and situating himself comfortably on his lap facing him.

“Jimin Hyung, you are the best and coolest and prettiest hyung in all the universes and me and my Daddy are going to love you for a long long time okay?”

Jimin smiled so wide it hurt, accepting Jungkook’s kiss on the tip of his nose.

“A long long time, Jimin.”

“A long long time, Yoongi.”