The headache throbbing in Seokjin’s temples had been killing him for nearly an hour. At some point his shoulders had gotten so tense that the pain traveled up through the back of his neck and into his brain where it seemed determined to bring him down. A half empty word document stared at him from his computer, the text cursor blinking over and over.
He pushed his shaggy bangs away from his eyes and tried to type something. Anything. He lightly tapped the keys in a little pattern, hoping for inspiration to strike. Nothing came to him. Just when he was considering throwing his laptop out the window his phone vibrated with new messages.
hyuuuuung let’s get dinner
i miss you. and i’m starving
but mostly i miss you
Seokjin’s head throbbed painfully as one new stressor was added to his plate. He missed Jungkook too, he knew he’d been blowing him off for weeks. Jungkook had the cutest pout and it made Seokjin’s heart ache with guilt when he disappointed him. With Seokjin’s thesis deadline approaching, everything fun in his life had been pushed aside including his boyfriend.
You know I can’t go out right now :(
uh huh. are you sitting in front of the computer right now and not writing anything?
Seokjin glanced back at his laptop, blank space still taunting him.
hey don’t go anywhere
After 10 minutes, Jungkook hadn’t answered and Seokjin still hadn’t written a single word. His bangs had drifted back in front of his eyes and Seokjin didn’t bother fixing them this time. He had been so busy he even put off getting a haircut and now his hair was constantly getting in his way. Jungkook said he should style it in a man bun. Seokjin didn’t laugh.
After another 15 minutes Seokjin had only written 50 words that he ended up deleting anyway. Maybe instead of writing this thesis he could just run away and go off the grid? The school wouldn’t notice if he withdrew all of his cash. Maybe he could get a new identity. Jungkook would probably be down to run away together and live in Spain.
He was just fantasizing about rubbing sunscreen across Jungkook’s back on some beautiful beach when he heard someone keying in the code to his front door.
“Hi hyung!” Jungkook said brightly as he let himself in. He set his backpack on the floor as he toed off his shoes, perfectly comfortable treating Seokjin’s apartment like his own.
“Hey,” Seokjin said cautiously. “I didn’t finish my thesis yet.”
“I know, but how long have you been working on it today?”
Jungkook sat beside Seokjin on the couch and moved his laptop to the coffee table. Seokjin felt a strange pang in his chest at the idea of his computer being too far away while there was still so much work to do.
“Let me buy dinner and we can just relax tonight.”
“But I -”
“Hyung,” Jungkook interrupted. “Please just dinner? Just for one night? Then tomorrow you can go back to stressing yourself to death.”
Saying no was impossible in the face of Jungkook’s big, wounded eyes and his pout. Seokjin kept telling himself he was going to build up a resistance to it but didn’t blame himself for not actually being capable.
“Ok,” he finally said. “Just one break.”
“Great!” Jungkook smiled and Seokjin’s heart came to life at the sight. “What do you want for dinner?”
Seokjin sighed. “Chicken. I want just - the biggest box of fried chicken they’re allowed to sell.”
“That sounds perfect,” Jungkook tugged gently on the front of Seokjin’s shirt to kiss him. He started to move away but Seokjin placed his hand on Jungkook’s nape, holding him close and kissing him again. Jungkook hummed against his lips, a pretty little sound that Seokjin wanted to hold close to his own heart. When they finally broke apart, Jungkook’s eyes were starry and Seokjin felt like an idiot for depriving himself of time with his boyfriend.
“I’m gonna order dinner before your kiss me stupid,” Jungkook gave his head a little shake and starting sorting through the food ordering app on his phone. Seokjin toyed with a hole in Jungkook’s jeans while he ordered.
Jungkook’s phone pinged with a notification and he frowned at the screen.
“Bad news is the chicken won’t be here for 55 minutes. Good news is that now I have time for part two of my plan.”
Before Seokjin could ask what part two could possibly be, Jungkook was scrambling off the couch for his backpack. He pulled a smaller bag out from under some of his clothes and brandished it proudly.
“I brought stuff to give you a haircut. Unless you’ve reconsidered about the man bun.”
“A haircut? Do you know how to cut hair?”
Jungkook shrugged. “I watched a bunch of YouTube tutorials today. It’ll be fine.”
Seokjin always had trouble deciding whether Jungkook’s plans were actually crazy or just sounded that way and he had been burned a few times when he chose incorrectly. At least now his worst case scenario involved looking a little silly for a few weeks.
“Uh. Ok,” he said. “Give me a haircut then.”
They decided to do it at the dining table with a hand mirror propped up against a roll of paper towels so Seokjin could watch Jungkook work. Jungkook wrapped a bath towel around Seokjin’s shoulders before laying his tools out on the table. He had brought some hair cutting scissors, a comb, and a handful of tiny colored rubber bands.
“So do you go to school around here?” Jungkook asked, already deep into his hairdresser role.
Seokjin huffed a tiny laugh, his first one in a while. “Yeah. I’m in grad school.”
“Oof, that sounds tough.” Jungkook started combing the little tangles out of Seokjin’s hair. “You seeing anybody?”
“I’ve got a boyfriend. He’s pretty great.”
“Well, he sounds very handsome and athletic,” Jungkook said without a trace of irony. He reached for one of his tiny rubber bands and tied some of Seokjin’s hair up right on top of his head. “Ha, you’re like a little apple.”
He flicked Seokjin’s apple stem of hair and smiled and he looked so cute and loveable that Seokjin felt tears burn his eyes. He was just - so tired. He felt worn thin, every gust of wind going straight to the bone, and he just wanted it to be over with. And there was Jungkook, with the sweetest smile he’d ever seen, wanting to take some of his burden and be kind to him.
“Are you crying?” Jungkook said gently.
“No,” Seokjin sniffled and wiped at his eyes. “I have never felt an emotion in my life, thank you very much.”
“Awww, babe,” Jungkook leaned down to hug Seokjin tightly, hooking his chin over Seokjin’s shoulder and pressing their cheeks together. Most days, Jungkook was like a puppy let loose in the park. Bright, and excited, and bursting with energy. But when someone needed him he was soft, all hugs and gentle affirmations.
“It’s gonna be ok,” he gave Seokjin’s body an extra squeeze. “You’re not gonna write your whole thesis tonight. You can take tonight to have a good dinner and get lots of sleep. I’ll help you with anything you want tomorrow.”
“Ok,” Seokjin said softly. “Thanks.”
“Of course,” Jungkook pressed a warm, lingering kiss to Seokjin’s temple before giving his apple hair a little tug. “Now let’s get those bangs out of your eyes.”
There was a running joke in their friend group that Jungkook was good at anything he set his mind to. If he wanted to learn to cook something he would read dozens of recipes before recreating the dish perfectly and then eat nothing but instant noodles for a month. He picked up hobbies long enough to excel at them before becoming interesting in something new. Apparently he was good at cutting hair too. Seokjin actually thought he looked pretty good as Jungkook snipped at different sections of hair.
“Should I really become a hairstylist?” Jungkook wondered aloud as he stood behind Seokjin and looked in the mirror.
“I would be your best customer,” Seokjin replied. “Scalp massages every week.”
“A happy ending costs extra,” Jungkook said as he tied another tiny apple stem up on top of Seokjin’s hair. He was starting to wonder if this really had anything to do with the hair cutting process but Jungkook seemed to love it so Seokjin stayed quiet.
Jungkook seemed very focused on his work, tilting Seokjin’s head to different angles, pushing his bangs back and letting them fall gently back onto his forehead before making another cut.
“I’m a miracle worker,” Jungkook said while nodding. “I made the most handsome man alive even more handsome.”
“You can’t make me more handsome, I was born this way,” Seokjin replied but he did pick up the hand mirror to examine his reflection. He looked less tired now, his eyes finally free of his bangs, the hair in subtle layers so it didn’t look like Jungkook had slapped a bowl on his head and cut around it. Even though part of Seokjin suspected that might happen when Jungkook suggested a haircut.
“It’s not free though,” Jungkook said as he placed his scissors on the table.
“Oh yeah? Not even for me?”
“Especially not for you,” Jungkook sat himself right on Seokjin’s lap and placed his arms around his shoulders. He smiled before he leaned in to kiss Seokjin solidly and Seokjin felt the last of his headache drifting away. His hands slid up across Jungkook’s back, pausing to press his thumb into a spot where Jungkook usually complained about feeling sore.
“I don’t deserve you,” Seokjin said against Jungkook’s lips before stealing one more kiss.
“Don’t say that,” Jungkook replied quietly, oddly serious. “I wanted to come see you and make you feel better because I love you and you always take care of me. You deserve to be taken care of too.” Seokjin held him tight as Jungkook leaned in for a hug, pressing his face against Seokjin’s neck and sighing. “Besides, you really need the help since you’ll be in a home soon.”
“There he is,” Seokjin smiled and rubbed Jungkook’s back gently.
They ate half of the box of chicken on the couch, laughing at some variety show that Jungkook had chosen. Seokjin actually forgot about his thesis for a few hours, focused only on a hot meal and Jungkook’s warm thigh pressed against his own. He couldn’t remember the last time he had felt so relaxed and light. Jungkook just had that effect on him.
When they both started to drift off on the couch, Seokjin insisted they clean up and get into bed. Seokjin always slept better with Jungkook snuggled up beside him, his body warm and soft. He had been toying with the idea of asking Jungkook to move in with him soon but kept getting cold feet. Seokjin’s life was kind of a wreck right now with school and work and Jungkook deserved the best.
He held Jungkook close in bed, pulling him flush against his own body before Jungkook could even get properly settled.
“Do you feel any better?” Jungkook asked.
“So much better. I don’t even know what was bothering me so much,” Seokjin sighed as he pulled him in for a gentle kiss.
Seokjin rolled Jungkook onto his back and planted his knee on the mattress, right between Jungkook’s legs.
“Hi,” Jungkook breathed, looking up at Seokjin with half lidded eyes.
“Hi,” Seokjin smiled before he kissed him hard. Jungkook moaned against his lips, a tiny sound that drove Seokjin forward for more.
Seokjin was a little bit in love with how sensitive Jungkook was, how easily he could make Jungkook whine and tremble under his hands. He smoothed his palms underneath Jungkook’s shirt, relishing the way he arched up against Seokjin’s chest with a short little exhale.
“I missed you,” Seokjin kissed Jungkook’s throat, eager to be close and leave marks across Jungkook’s soft skin.
“I missed you - ah ,” Jungkook gasped as Seokjin nipped at his pulse. He pressed a kiss to Jungkook’s neck and nuzzled his forehead against Jungkook’s hair.
“You know I love you, right?” he asked quietly.
Jungkook’s cheeks were pink and he smiled softly. “‘Course. I love you too.” He whined when Seokjin pressed his thigh up further between his legs.
“Can I touch you?”
Jungkook nodded quickly. “Please. Feels like it’s been forever.”
“I’m sorry, baby,” Seokjin dragged his fingertips across Jungkook’s abdomen and felt the muscles tense under his touch. “You know I’ll make it up to you.”
The sun woke Seokjin up the next morning, shining brightly through a gap in his blinds. He grumbled and tried to block out the light by pressing his face against Jungkook’s bare shoulder. Neither of them had bothered with putting their clothes back on last night and Seokjin was determined to spend the morning feeling Jungkook’s soft skin instead of facing any responsibilities. He promised himself he would work on his thesis later when he wasn’t so comfortable and -
“Oh shit,” Seokjin threw the covers off of himself and Jungkook groaned a weak complaint.
Seokjin ran into the living room to get his laptop and flinched when the cool metal touched his legs. Jungkook followed behind after a few minutes of work, the comforter draped across his shoulders.
“Hyung,” he whined. “Why are you up?”
“I just finally figured out how to combine these two sections of my thesis,” Seokjin said, fingers flying across his keyboard. “I’ve been stuck for so long and now I finally relaxed enough to actually think clearly.”
“Does being naked help you write better?”
“No time for clothes,” Seokjin said without looking up from his computer.
Jungkook chuckled softly to himself and started walking to the kitchen. “I’m eating leftover chicken for breakfast.”
Seokjin just kept typing before he had another revelation. “Wait!” he called out and Jungkook froze. “Um - Kook-ah - do you, um, do you want to move in with me?”
If Seokjin thought he was in love with Jungkook’s smile before, it was only because he hadn’t seen this version of it yet, with Jungkook looking as bright and happy as Seokjin had ever seen him.
“Yeah. Yeah of course I do,” Jungkook answered before burying his smile in his blanket cape and continuing on towards the fridge.
Seokjin kept working on his thesis, feeling clearer and more focused than ever, and very thankful that he had someone like Jungkook in his life.