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Manny (많이)

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Jinyoung glanced down at his pristine white shirt and grimaced at coffee quickly being soaked up by the linen. “Mark, let me call you back after the interview. I just spilled a little coffee on my shirt, so I need to clean it up before I embarrass myself,” he scowled into the phone.

 

Mark's sharp features tilted into an exasperated look. “Okay, but you need to call me back as soon as you leave. I want all the details.”

 

“You should've just applied for it, if you wanted to know what he looks like.”

 

“Where's the fun in that?” Mark asked smirked into the camera. “Anyways, you had more chances of passing the first round of applicants than I did. I stand no chance against you.”

 

His scowl deepened. Much like himself, Mark had been a school teacher, but found working with children one on one more rewarding, so they had switched to becoming nannies working in the same agency and sharing an apartment. Since he'd helped that one child on 2nd begin to talk again, the entire agency had dubbed him the child whisperer. “Don't you dare start with that too,” he growled.

 

“Oh, Nyoungie, but you gotta admit there hasn't been a child you've come across who's defeated you.”

 

He huffed a quickly laugh, waving into the camera. “I'm hanging up,” he said in a singing voice.

 

Mark giggled. “Bye. Remember, call me back as soon as possible.”

 

“Yeah, whatever.”

 

“I heard he's ho-…”

 

He hung up before another word crossed his friend's lips, rolling his eyes. He stood, gathering his stuff off the table and made his way towards the restroom in the restaurant he was biding his time in. As he passed the receptacle bins, he threw his cup of Americano in. The thing hadn't been something to rave about, but it had awaken him enough to function. He glanced down at his wristwatch and decided he had about ten minutes before he needed to leave.

 

He walked into the restroom and found it empty. He sighed in relief that he didn't need to wait for mirror space. He pulled a towel out of the dispenser hanging on the wall and dampened it before he began to dab at the stain. When it proved stubborn, he groaned and searched his bag for something to perhaps cover it with. He pulled out his cashmere sweater and cursed its color. Normally, he wouldn't think twice about mixing grey with black slacks and a tie, but for an interview? And an interview with L.A.’s notorious real estate tycoon? No way in hell.

 

Right now though, he didn't really have a choice. He took off his glasses and placed it on the counter as he sighed heavily. He pulled the sweater over his head, hoping to all that was holy that the thing wouldn't mess his hair too. As soon as his head poked through the collar, he quickly checked himself in the mirror. Thank God! His jet black hair seemed to be the only cooperative thing in his life right now.

 

He tugged the sweater the rest of the way down and neatly tucked the ends into his pants, adjusting around as he went. When he got to the cuffs, he tugged the sleeves up and glanced at his watch, realizing belatedly he had somehow overran his ten minutes.

 

“Shit!”

 

He quickly shoved everything in his bag again and dashed out. In no time, he stood before a set of tall wrought iron gates intricately adorned on either side by a tigers sitting atop stone pillars. Through the thick bars he could see a neatly trimmed lawn, a perfectly paved driveway, and the beginnings of a house, but nothing else. No front door, no groundskeepers… just nothing.

 

Odd.

 

He walked over to the right side of the gates, but before he could press the intercom button, a voice with an accent almost Korean instructed him to go through the smaller side gate. Nodding shakily, he moved back to the smaller gate on the left side and the thing popped open as he got closer. He walked through and the gate locked behind him causing him to jump. The tiny hairs on the nape of his neck stood and he shuddered as he remembered his conversation with Mark the night he passed the first round of applicants.

 

“I passed,” he announced as he plopped himself down on their living room sofa beside the elder.

 

“Of course you did. You're-...”

 

“Don't you dare say it!”

 

“The child whisperer.”

 

He groaned. “Hyung!”

 

Mark turned to him then. “But seriously, Nyoungie. I knew you would. Not because you're ‘the child whisperer,’ but because you're a professional and highly recommended in our field.”

 

He smiled. “Thanks, Hyung. That’s the nicest thing you've ever said to me.”

 

“Yeah, right! But, Nyoungie, just be careful, okay?”

 

He frowned. “Is there something I don't know?”

 

Mark’s face scrunched up. “Well, I don't know how much of it is true, but word has it that Im Jaebum has connections with the Korean Geondals.”

 

“Word mouth or word of that online gossip magazine you're always reading?” he smirked.

 

“Hah! Very funny,” Mark guffawed. “Just be careful. I know you, Jinyoungie. You never could leave without the last say. The last thing I need is for you to go missing. I'll never be able to sleep if something were to happen to you at a job I applied you to for selfish reasons.”

 

“Don't worry. I did my homework on Im Jaebum - married young, wife passed away, two kids under seven years old. It's a classic single, rich dad with no time for his brats. I'll have them whipped up in no time at all.”

 

Mark arched a brow at him. “Did you read the articles about the charges his in-laws dropped on him?”

 

He frowned, cocking his head in Mark's direction. “Charges?”

 

“Murder.”

 

He softened. “He was acquitted,” he said, waving a hand dismissively. “If he was guilty, I doubt he would have custody of his own children now.”

 

“People get away with murder everyday, Jinyoungie. Just be careful.”

 

Now, as he looked up at the imposing house, he couldn't help but shiver.

 

Actually, house couldn't begin to describe the place. It's way too huge. Manor? Castle?

 

The place was massive. At least three floors high, white with an blue A-frame roof, the place was completed with an attached three parking garage and a well-kempt lawn. The paved road leading up to the house couldn't even be called a driveway. It was just as wide as 14th.

 

As he walked up the driver, a side door swung open and a bulky Korean man with awkward red hair and a black suit much too tight for his large frame walked out and gestured at him. He looked around him even as he pointed to himself. “나?” he asked awkwardly when he found no one else.

 

The man nodded curtly, beckoning him to follow.

 

He did as instructed, practically rushing to catch up. They entered the manor from the side entrance and the linoleum white floors were the first thing he noticed. He fidgeted, thinking about how someone had done their job so intently. The floor was so shiny he was afraid the man was about to see up his pants leg.

 

“I'm Park Jinyoung.”

 

“I know.”

 

“I've come for the job interview. I have an appointment with Mr. Im.”

 

“I know,” the man repeated.

 

“What's your name?” It was basic human interaction and it was only natural to know a potential fellow employee's name… right?

 

“Kookie.”

 

He clamped his mouth shut. Cookie? That's hardly a name to describe you, sir… but somehow, it fit him perfectly. He isn't bad looking, but he does look like a tough cookie.

 

They entered the house and walked down the hall, into a reception room. Immediately, he met the eyes of his only competition in the entirety of New York City - Park Ji Soo, from Tiny Treasures. Smiling confidently, he sat beside her and nodded slightly in greeting.

 

“Why are you here?” she scoffed, rolling her eyes.

 

“I imagine the same thing you're here for,” he said smiling sweetly.

 

“Little Britches hasn't been shut down yet?” she fired back.

 

“Mannies are a lot more reliable, and less threatening than nannies. No one wants to house the mistress these days.”

 

The doors he had just entered clicked opened before Ji Soo could say another word and a middle aged Chinese woman walked in. Her cold indifferent expression commanded their attention and she locked gazed with Ji Soo. “Park Ji Soo?” she said softly, but clearly.

 

“Yes” Ji Soo said, standing.

 

“Follow me,” the woman said sweeping back out the door as regally as she had swept in.

 

He frowned. Is everyone here cold and antisocial? he thought to himself as he opened his bag and pulled out his resume. He scanned the document, but before he could go over his credentials, the same woman walked back in.

 

“Park Jinyoung?”

 

“Yes,” he said standing. Is Ji Soo done already? She must've not passed. Feeling a little more confident, he followed the old woman when she instructed him to follow her. Lisa Lu, as she introduced herself as, led him down a series of corridors, he noticed they were decorated lavishly with end tables topped with beautiful fresh flowers in vases or statuettes, and intricate paintings covered the walls that could've bought his entire apartment complex.

 

As they walked further into the house, he thought back to the brief research he had done on the master of the house. Im Jaebum had been married once upon a time. Pictures of him and his beautiful wife, Im Nayeon, on their wedding day had been one of the first pictures he had seen of the man. In a black tuxedo and his hair slicked back, he had looked dashing as he looked down at his wife like she had discovered the miracle of fire. Their wedding and the arrival of both their sons had been the subject of many tabloids as well as his wife's suspicious passing.

 

There had been one particular picture that had caught his eye. It had been a pictorial written of Im Jaebum, business tycoon. Something about the cold, hard stones of his eyes had made him stop clicking through the numerous pictures. Here was a man who got what he wanted. A man who would stop at nothing until he got what he set out to take. An impeccable man. An implacable man. A man who made the impossible, possible. A man you do not antagonize. A man you should never cross.

 

A man you allowed to take you...

 

He frowned. 어머, where did that come from? he thought as he crushed the thought. If I get this job, I would be monitoring his sons’ learning progress and reporting it to him directly. Since I'm exceptional at my job, I don't foresee needing to take shit from him. I am a professional. I would never risk my good name for a man. No matter how hot he is. Anyways, he's straight. He would never give another man like me a second glance. He's probably got women lining up to be his second wife. The last thing I need is to get my hopes up only to have it and my heart crushed.

 

They came to a stop at a door and he straightened his back. The door opened and the wind was knocked out of him. The devil himself sat behind a desk because only the devil looked that darkly handsome with stars twinkling in his eyes and perfectly placed moles above his eyes against pale perfect skin.

Chapter Text

The knock resounded in the room and it swung further open, he looked up from the file splayed open on his desk. He noticed three things immediately.

 

First, Park Jinyoung looked nothing like the man in the file sitting on his desk.

 

Second, he was nothing like the classical, gaudy frivolous women he usually hooked up with.

 

Third, lust. Pure, unadulterated lust slammed into him, washing through him like liquid fire in his veins.

 

He wanted Park Jinyoung, and the effect that amplified in him at the smile that crinkle his eyes only confirmed it. That smile was the single most beautiful work of art in existence. Fuck Raphael and Da Vinci! His pale porcelain skin looked creamier against his jet black hair. His dark eyes twinkled like stars in the sky on a moonless night, and his lips… Good lord, he could imagine those dark red lips wrapped around his cock. Even in a cheap cashmere sweater, stained white button up, and loose, slightly wrinkled black slacks, he was sexy as fuck.

 

He leaned forward and laced his finger together over the man's file after he gestured to the empty chair across his desk. “Come in and have a seat, Mr. Park.”

 

He walked in with effortless grace and lowered himself in the seat. “Thank you,” he said softly.

 

“So, tell me about yourself. What made you want to take this job?” he invited, trying not to let his eyes wander any further down past Jinyoung's chin.

 

“Well, there's not much to tell. I studied to become a school teacher, but found that I enjoyed working with small children more..”

 

“Why?”

 

The man frowned. “I-I don’t know. No one's ever really asked me that before. I guess I like their innocence. I find their honesty charming and easy to deal with.”

 

“So, you don't like adults?” he asked offhandedly.

 

He shrugged nonchalantly. “I've only found a handful tolerable.”

 

“Why?”

 

“Adults are more guarded and often times lie.”

 

“So you like honesty?”

 

Jinyoung looked him straight in the eye then. “Always.”

 

“That will be all,” Jaebum said, standing. “Thank you for your time.”

 

“That’s it?” the man asked incredulously without standing.

 

“Yes. Lisa will contact you on Tuesday and let you know the outcome of the interview.”

 

Jinyoung’s eyes squinted in suspicion and he nearly collapsed against his desk.

 

God, they are so fucking beautiful when they crinkle like that. He felt his cock twitch and knew then he had made the right decision. Jinyoung was dangerous. He was far too distracting to be in his home 24/7. He didn't need that kind of temptation running amuck within his vicinity.

 

Jinyoung stood abruptly and he straightened. “Why do I need to wait for Mrs. Lu to call me? Just be honest. If I didn't get the job, just say it to my face. That way I don't have to stress about it over the weekend and worsen the most horrible day in the week.”

 

“Okay,” he said, nodding his head as he bent over to lean his palm on his desk over Jinyoung’s file. “You didn’t get the job.”

 

“Why?” the man demanded.

 

He arched his brows at the man's audacity. He couldn't remember when the last time someone had met him head-on and it rattled him to the point where he didn't know how to react to it. A part of him found it intriguing, while the other scraped at his sense of absolute authority and control. “Why?” he scoffed, looking away for a brief moment. He straightened again. “ Why? Do you want me to be honest, Mr. Park?”

 

“Of course.”

 

He walked around his desk and the man took an instinctive step back. The space between them felt zapped with tension and he knew he wasn't the only one feeling it then. They were natural born adversaries. They would fight like cats and dogs. At this point, even if he wanted to hire the man, he couldn't. He had his sons to think about.

 

“Because…,” he shot out a hand and grasp the man by the front of his sweater, pulling him against him. The man stood no chance against the unexpected move and they met chest to chest, but he felt the pounding of Jinyoung's heart against his knuckles. Jinyoung gasped, looking up at him with wild eyes and he could practically breathe in the excitement the man was emitting. “Of this,” he whispered before crushing their lips together.

 

For at least three seconds, Jinyoung stood frozen with shock before he began to struggle, but he didn't let up. He waited until Jinyoung naturally submitted to his assault. He waited for it to happen.

 

And it did.

 

But it wasn't a submission he expected. It was the classic melt-in-your-arms women usually did when they submitted to him. It was like what he imagined being struck by lightning would feel like. Jinyoung did melt into his embrace, but he fought for dominance in the kiss, giving as much as he took and it made him feel alive. His entire frame shuddered when Jinyoung sighed against his lips and when his palm naturally drifted down to Jinyoung's ass, his mind nearly combusted in his head. They were full and fit into his palm perfectly. It was a nice ass - round, luscious and muscular. He could already see it in his mind's eye bare and printed red in the shape of his palm. He wanted nothing more than to bend the man over his desk and fuck him into next week where he could hire him as more than just a caregiver to his sons.

 

His sons. Fuck!

 

He pulled away and looked Jinyoung in the eyes.

 

Fuck you!  Jinyoung already red lips were swollen seemed to scream. They were practically begging him to claim them over and over again.

 

The man blinked a couple of times before he took a step back, away from him. He lifted his hand and for a split second he thought Jinyoung would punch him. Instead a stinging slap landed across his cheek.

 

He opened his mouth to say something when he caught a glint of shock in the younger man's eyes. It would've grated the man to know he could've stopped him, but he chose a different route. He wanted to see Jinyoung's control slip to see what he would find, and when he the glint became a full blown shocked look, he relished it. The kiss had been one thing, but the slap had been other thing. He realized then, as emotions flickered across Jinyoung's face, that no one had ever reduced Jinyoung to a level where he resorted to violence.

 

He smiled in satisfaction.

 

Jinyoung stared at him in disbelief before he spun on his heels and left without another word. He had left the door open when he exited and he got a really good view of the man's ass as he brusquely walked away with his back straight as a ramrod.

 

Jinyoung was halfway down the corridor when a small figure slipped out from behind a curtain and stood in his way. Immediately, he felt his blood thickened and his pulse slow.

 

The man came to a sudden halt in front of Youngjae.

 

He watched in amazement as Youngjae curled his hand around Jinyoung's and look up at the caregiver, who stood there looking back at his son.

 

Nope. Fuck me!

Chapter Text

A ball of shy, pure sunshine stepped out from behind curtains and he came to a complete halt. The child smiled gently at him and his breath caught. The angry blood rushing through his vein froze and dissipated at the sight, making him tremble in the aftermath. There was no doubt in his mind that this was Youngjae, the ones the tabloids had describe as the North Star of Jaebum's life - his eldest son. The picture in the tabloids had not done him justice. His radiance came from the haunted knowing look in his eyes that was well hidden by the shine in his smile.

 

가-가지마,” the child stuttered in a trembling voice.

 

He stared down in amazement at the child for two reasons. One, the tabloids had said he was non-verbal and two, the child seemed terrified. In an instant, he forgot his anger.  Before him was a child suffering, and he couldn't for the life of him ignore that. “뭐?”

 

가지마,” Youngjae repeated. “날 남겨두지마.”

 

His heart ached in his chest, but he knew he had to be gentle with him. He squatted down until they came eye to eye. He took Youngjae's hands in his. “미안해요. 내가 떠나고 싶은 것은 아니다. 이해를 멋하겠 -…

 

“Mr. Park!” a velvet smooth voice called from behind him.

 

The child jumped away from him, pulling his hands out of his and nearly knocking him on his ass. Youngjae gave him one last imploring look before he ran headlong down the hall.

 

He straightened, feeling his anger surge through him just as quickly as it had passed. He turned around and looked at Im Jaebum.

 

The man tall, intimidating frame filled the doorway of his office with his broad shoulders and impeccable royal blue suit. There was no expression on his cold face, but it didn't take away from his beauty. “Will you come back into my office, please?”

 

He didn't want to go back. He really didn't. He turned to look down the hall Youngjae ran down before he walked back to Jaebum's office with the intention of giving the man a piece of his mind. As he reached the doorway, Jaebum took a step back and away to let him in, but he felt the crackle between them. A spark that made a shiver run up his spine.

 

As the door clicked shut behind him, he closed his eyes and took a deep breath to steady himself before he whirled on the man. He opened his mouth to say something and instead gasped at the sight that greeted him. Jaebum was squatting and tears were in his eyes. He trembling all over and had a palm over his mouth as if trying to contain his sobs. He stood stock still, unsure of whether to comfort the man or just give him a moment to compose himself. He chose to wait.

 

After a minute, Jaebum stood up and looked at him. “What-what did he tell you?”

 

In that moment he didn't know whether Jaebum intimidated him or intrigued him more. “He said, ‘가지마. 날 남겨두지마.’”

 

A pained expression  crossed Jaebum's face for a split-second. It was so fast he nearly missed it. He reached up and scratched his head before he seemed to come to a decision. “I've reconsidered. I was too hasty in declining your services.”

 

He scoffed an amused laugh. “No, I think I was too hasty in applying for it,” he said enjoying this newfound power over the man.

 

A flicker of annoyance crossed Jaebum's face before he smoothly tucked it away just as fast as it had appeared. It was painfully obvious the man didn't have to deal with insubordination on a daily basis and he wanted to milk it for all it was worth.

 

“I'll double your salary,” the man said softly, challenging him.

 

“Thanks, but no thanks,” he replied, determined to stand his ground.

 

“Triple,” he upped, holding his gaze just as determinedly.

 

“Not good enough,” he said, folding his arms across his chest.

 

“Name your damn price then,” Jaebum growled.

 

His skin tingles and he wanted to stay impervious to the man's offers, but it seemed Jaebum didn't want to back down. “Are you serious?”

 

“Of course,” Jaebum gritted out.

 

“No. It's not about the money. I don't care about the money.”

 

“Then what would cause you to deny a child in need?” Jaebum asked repenting his anger a bit. “Look, Youngjae hasn't spoken in months now. He used to walk around the house singing at the top of his lungs that Nayeon and I would have to scold him to keep it down a bit from time to time. I want with all my heart to hear him sing again. From what I read on your file, you used to give piano lessons. Youngjae loves the piano. Please tell what it is.”

 

“It's you,” he said softly. “I can't work for a man like you.”

 

“Why not? You seemed perfectly willing when you walked into this room a few minutes ago.”

 

“Yeah, that was before you forced yourself on me!”

 

“I kissed you because you forced the issue on me.”

 

“Do you force yourself on everyone who stands up to you?’ he shot back. He didn't even know where it came from. Mark was usually the one that said stuff like that, but something about Jaebum grated at him.

 

Jaebum deflated a bit. “You wanted to know why so I showed the best way I could.”

 

“Well then, surely nothing has changed from a few minutes ago.”

 

Jaebum dragged an annoyed hand through his immaculately styled hair. “A lot has changed since then. I take my responsibilities as a father very seriously. Nothing is more important than my sons. Their needs come before mine at all times. Yes, I admit. I am sexually attracted to you, but Youngjae specifically chose you. I can get anyone I want - any time, any day. I can fuck my way through New York City, if I wanted, but he chose you, so his need for you override mine.”

 

For some reason, the declaration of Jaebum getting anyone he wanted cut through him like a knife, making him wince slightly. It infuriated him even more that to know that it was true. Jaebum had enough money to have anyone willingly open their legs to him - male or female, rich or poor - and if his money didn't, his looks sure as hell would.

 

“As I've already said and put in the job description, Youngjae hasn't spoken a word in months. No one, not even his psychiatrist knows why. He’s never even attempted to leave the mansion grounds. He simply refuses to and when he's forced to, he breaks down. It gets so bad, he faints. You're the first person he's ever spoken to since Nayeon passed away, so I will move heaven and earth to hear him speak again. So, please, take the job.”

 

The hoarse, raspy sound of Jaebum's pleading voice told a sad lamenting story that made him believe the elder was telling the truth about putting his son's needs before his. He even felt a touch if admiration for this man, but he just stood there and stared at the man. He felt torn. He wanted to stay because he saw the stark fear in Youngjae's eyes. He had felt the way the child had flinched beneath his palm at Jaebum's voice. He knew it had taken Youngjae a lot to approach him and yet had, but he wanted to know why.

 

Why me? I want to help, but why me? Why had he chosen me? He had known about Youngjae's condition from the job description. It was what drew him into applying for it, and he wanted to get to the bottom of what scared Youngjae into silence, but he also felt a nagging, almost instinctual sense of self-preservation that kept him from dealing with the devil standing in front of him. That instinct screamed at him to tuck tail and run like hell. It screamed at him that Im Jaebum was too dangerous for his sanity. It had taken the man only a couple of minutes to grate him enough to lose his shit and resort violence. He never even dreamed of being provoked enough to hurt another human being, but this man had made it a reality.

 

“You can rest assured that if you take this job, you'll have no unwanted advances made towards you by me,” Jaebum added.

 

He bit his lip thoughtfully, still unsure.

 

부탁해, 진녕씨,” Jaebum said softly and oh-so persuasively.

 

He could see the pleading, desperate way Jaebum was begging him so fiercely to stay and attend to Youngjae was that his will cracked. It was both empowering and endearing to watch this powerful man bend for his own child that his resolve crumbled. “You promise not to pull another stunt like that again.”

 

“You have my word,” Jaebum quickly replied, hope beginning to glitter in his eyes.

 

“Alright, Mr. Im ,” he said, emphasising the formalities of where they stood as employee and employer. “I'll stay, but if you ever-”

 

“I gave you my word. If anything happens between us, it'll be because you asked for it.”

 

He scoffed, smirking a bit. “The devil himself will be dressed for winter when that happens.”

 

Jaebum smirked right back. “Then you have nothing to worry about. Will you be able to start tomorrow?”

 

“I guess.”

 

“Good. I'll have a car sent to you to pick you and your stuff up.”

 

“That won’t be necessary. I can get here on my own.”

 

“As you wish. My secretary will take it from here and have you sign the necessary paperwork.”

 

“Fine.”

 

감사합니다, 박진녕씨,” the man said formally before he walked over to the closed door.

 

He stiffened, taken aback by the cold distance Jaebum placed between them. The man looked back at him like a stranger and bowed down a complete 90 degree angle, and it was as a door was slammed in his face. A part of him felt oddly hurt by the politeness in Jaebum's voice, but covered it up with a bow of his own in the man's direction.

 

Only when the door clicked shut did he straighten and stared at the wooden frame in confusion. Before the agreement, they had simply been two men meeting and now one was an employer and the other an employee. He looked away from the door and a few minutes later, Lisa walked in with a folder in her frail arms. She smiled at him softly, but he still could shake the feeling of losing something of, so he could only offer her a weak smile in return.

 

You're being stupid. You should be happy. You got the job , he told himself, but inside he felt an longing. An ache that he may have been to hasty in throwing away something that could've meant a lot more to him than he originally knew.

Chapter Text

“He what now?” Mark asked in confusion, poking his head out of the restroom in their shared apartment, his face plastered in a cool green mask. One could not ask for a better friend than Mark. He was kind, supportive and as loyal as Jesus to God.

 

He and Mark had met at the elementary school they used to teach in and became fast friends. Between the both of them, they had their fair share of diaper changes, being peed on, met challenges in smirky toddlers, and silent battles with snarky wives that became unnecessarily over-protective with their husbands, but they were content with their chosen paths.

 

Granted, they were like a keg of powder and fire in temperament. As passive as gunpowder was alone, he was content with sitting in his little nook reading a book or two. Mark, on the other hand, crackles with energy until fed. He blazed like a wildfire - short fused, quick tempered and deadly.

 

“You heard me,” he replied, sinking into the sofa and kicking off his house slippers.

 

“No, I must've heard wrong because what I heard was: Im Jaebum kissed you,” he said, walking out and heading towards the refrigerator.

 

He folded up his legs and hugged them close. “That's exactly what I said.”

 

Mark cocked his head, sucking in a breath as he retrieved two bottles of soju and a pair of glasses from their cupboard. “That's… strange.” He walked over and plopped on the sofa beside him. “Repeat that. One more time,” he said slowly.

 

“Im Jaebum kissed me.”

 

“Holy shit!” Mark wheezed before he whirled on him, causing the mask on his face to slip “Hold on. I thought he was straight. Why are you laughing?”

 

“That mask! You look creepy and a little insane,” he said, drawing circles in front of his own face.

 

“Oh,” he acknowledged, tugging at the tip before he began to smooth it out again to fit the corners. When he was done, he opened a bottle and filled both cups.

 

Soon, they slipped down to the floor between the sofa and coffee table and were down to their pajama pants throwing back shots. “Let me get this straight… you went to the interview to be his sons’ manny and you kissed him.”

 

He shook his head and groaned as the world tilted a bit to the left. He wagged a finger in Mark's face. “No, he kissed me, Hyung.”

 

“What do you mean kiss? Like kiss on the cheek like French and Italians, on the forehead like fussy grandmothers, or I wanna fu-”

 

“On the mouth,” he finished before Mark could phrase it in a crude way.

 

“Wow.”

 

He nodded before he lifted his full glass and tossed back his shot. The alcohol burned its way down his esophagus and he heaved a breath out like he was taught to take the burn away.

 

“Okay. So tell me exactly how that happened,” Mark said, pulling a new strip of dried squid from the plate on the coffee table they had set up for chasers.

 

He groaned. “I already told you, Hyungie.”

 

“I seem to have miss a part,” Mark replied cheekily.

 

“Okay. It was a cold winter…”

 

Mark smack him on the shoulder and he winced in pain. “Stop deflecting!”

 

“Ow, Hyung!”

 

“It'll hurt more if you don't start talking.”

 

He looked down at his right hand, remembering how Jaebum's smooth cheek had felt under his skin when he had smacked the man. “To be honest, it's all kind of like a blur now. One minute we were sitting in his nicely decorated office talking about why I was a nanny and the next he was walking around his desk and…”

 

“Oh my God,” Mark heaved in anger. “What a bastard. You should report him to the police for sexual harassment. Think about all the other applicants. Did he do that to them as well? Do you think he did?”

 

“It wasn't that bad, Mark.”

 

Mark waited for an explanation and when he speak, he continued, “What do you mean it wasn't that bad? You don't think it was sexual harassment when a complete stranger who's supposed to be interviewing you jumps on you like that, or you don't think he did to the other applicants?”

 

“I'm not sure what I think right now.” Hell I don't even like the man. Yes, he's insanely rich and handsome as all hell, but he's also too hard and cold. I like my men warm, caring and attentive. I’m probably still in shock, he finally decided. He looked up and nearly groaned aloud to find Mark staring at him oddly.

 

He must've shown on his face what he was think because Mark's face settled into a don't-fuck-with-me expression as he placed his half-eaten squid strip back on the plate.

 

“I have ten more minutes before I have to take this mask. You better make me understand what happened or I'm gonna do everything in my power to land that man's was in a jail cell before tomorrow night and you perhaps… in a psychiatric ward where you can paint your lips with red M&Ms.”

 

“What did I do?” he cried, throwing his hands up in the air exaggeratedly, trying not to laugh at how Mark got so so defensive of his behalf.

 

Mark glared at him. “You can laugh and pretend all you want, Jinyoung-ah, but I know you. Your eyes gave it all away. I know when something is bothering you, and this is eating at you. Spit it out. What happened?”

 

“Okay, okay. Calm down, Hyungie. First of, he's not a monster, but he can be if he wanted… not helping. Okay. It wasn't like that.”

 

“Then tell me how it was before I explode.”

 

“I arrived at the house nearly late because of the coffee I spilt on myself. Actually calling it a house is like saying Times Square isn't busy. It's gi-normous! Very beau monde style. Like something you would find in Surrey and not in the middle of New York City. There's even a bodyguard named Cookie…”

 

“Are you trying to be funny?” Mark asked in a deadpanned, unamused tone.

 

Mark's rage made him feel a little guilty, so he pulled Mark in an embrace. “Relax, okay? There really is a bodyguard named Cookie and I'm getting to the important parts. It's just that my brain is fried, so it helps to try and recall every detail.”

 

“Why is your brain fried?” he asked frowning.

 

“Im Jaebum kissed me,” he remained Mark flatly.

 

Mark gave him a sideling look through slitted eyes which weren't really a feat since he was Taiwanese and had medium sized eyes to begin with. He swallowed his laughter. “I thought you weren't harassed by it.”

 

“It depends-” he said slowly.

 

“On what?” Mark asked leaning closer.

 

“On you definition of harassment. Anyways, can I continue without being constantly interrupted? I still have,” he glanced at his watch. “seven minutes.”

 

“Fine. Continue,” Mark said reaching for his piece of squid.

 

“Where was I?” he frowned trying to recall where he had stopped.

 

“The bodyguard - Cookie,” Mark said, snapping his fingers.

 

“Ah, yeah. Cookie.”

 

“I'm guessing he's more brawn than brain.”

 

He giggled. “Exactly! Any form of intellectual conversation would've been one-sided. He only seemed to know the phrase ‘I know.’”

 

Mark smiled a bit, relaxing. “Before you continue further, did you at least meet the children?”

 

“Mark, that's what struck me as odd,” he said softly, turning to his best friend. “I didn't meet Yugyeom, but I did meet Youngjae.”

 

“The older one that doesn't speak?”

 

He nodded.

 

“And?” Mark implored.

 

“He spoke to me,” he said, frowning. “Very briefly and he seemed hesitant to, even scared. Oh god, Mark. He begged me not to leave.”

 

Mark’s face scrunched up in concern. “Scared? Why would he be scared?”

 

“I-I don't know, but you looked terrified.”

 

“How old is he?”

 

“Seven.”

 

The concerned expression on Mark's face deepened. “You don't…,” he swallowed. “You don't think Jaebum could be abusive, right?”

 

He gasped. “Of course not. In fact, I originally didn't get the job, which is how we ended up locking lips in the first place, but when Youngjae spoke to me, Jaebum rescinded his decision of not hiring me,” he said turning to Mark before he continued. “Mark, the man had like this… mini breakdown. I thought he was gonna collapse when he called me back into his office. He sincerely wants to hear his son sing again.”

 

“Sing?”

 

“From what Jaebum told me of Youngjae, the kid used to walk around the house singing at the top of his lungs, then one day… nothing. He refused to sing - let alone talk. He won't even consider leaving the place.”

 

“Were you able to find out why he doesn't speak?”

 

He shook his head. “No. Apparently even his psychiatrist is clueless as to why.”

 

“How does he communicate?” Mark asked.

 

He smacked a hand against his head. “I never asked.”

 

“Wait! Did you say he begged you to stay?”

 

“That’s the oddest part of all! He spoke to me… in Korean at that.”

 

“In Korean? He spoke to you in Korean?” Mark asked disbelieving.

 

“Yes.”

 

“I thought he was non-verbal.”

 

“So did I! But Mark, I think he's just not talking out of fear.”

 

“Fear of what?”

 

“I don't know,” he cried, pulling at his hair in frustration.

 

“So what did you do?”

 

“Nothing at first. I was too stunned. Then he called me back into his office and Youngjae fled like a scared mouse. I couldn't work for the man, but I wasn't about to let the opportunity slip of letting him have a piece of my mind, so I walked back to office.”

 

“So, you didn't get the job?” Mark asked a little too excitedly.

 

“Quite the opposite actually,” he said in deadpanned tone, watching as Mark's face fell then tighten in confusion.

 

“What?”

 

“He rescinded his decision. I couldn't work for the man,” he repeated shaking his head. “Not after I slapped him.”

 

“You slapped him?” Mark screeched. “Hold up. Before or after you kissed him?”

 

“After.”

 

“Okay. Okay,” Mark said ripping the mask off his face. “Let's go back to Daddy Im and the kiss.”

 

He groaned. It's gonna be a long night.

Chapter Text

By the time he had finished retelling the story, they had stopped drinking for hours already and he was feeling more sober than he cared to feel. They sat for a couple of minutes in silence before Mark bit his lip uncertainly.

 

“I still don't know how I feel about Daddy Im, but I think the child made a brilliant decision in choosing you. If anyone can break that silence, it would you. You could be good for him.”

 

“You really think so?”

 

“Absolutely. They don't call you ‘the child whisperer’ at the agency for nothing. You'll help him. I'm sure of it.”

 

They went quiet again and he was just about to sink deeper into thought when Mark spoke up again. “So what does he look like in real life, I mean. Daddy Im…”

 

He groaned for umpteenth time. “Can you not-?”

 

“Not what?” Mark asked innocently, fluttering his long lashes.

 

He snarled, but relented. “Sexy. Red hair. Dark brown eyes that remind me of a chasm - cold, deep, and distant - like I could get lost in them. Perfectly shaped lips. Chiseled jawline that clean shaven. Straight nose, and those eyes. Did I mention his eyes?”

 

“Yes, dark brown, chasm; can get lost in them,” Mark giggled.

 

“Tall - about five-foot-ten, maybe even more. Broad-shouldered. They're so broad - they filled the entire doorway.”

 

“Dangerous looking?”

 

“Very. Formidable, even. I shuddered when he came close to me.” He shifted uncomfortably. Even now, as he thought about how Jaebum had wrapped him up in a tight embrace, he thought about how warm and comfortable he had felt. He felt a yearning so strong he could almost taste it.

 

“You really want him, don't you?” Mark deduced, staring at him in astonishment and confusion. As if he had sprouted six heads and had just found out.

 

“Hyung, I wasn't really honest with you a few minutes ago,” he said not wanting Im Jaebum to come between the trust he had built with Mark. “The truth is: I've never been this attracted to a man before.”

 

“I've never seen you like this, Jinyoungie.”

 

“I've never felt like this before. God, Mark-Hyung! I wanted him to bend me over his desk and fuck me.”

 

Mark gasped, his hand flying up to cover his mouth as if it would stop the hasty intake. “Oh, my God”

 

“There was goosebumps up and down my neck,” he continued. “I didn't think he noticed, but his eyes - Jesus! - his eyes traced them. He knew! It was so crazy. I could smell his need…”

 

He didn't know he had flown into a full-on rant until Mark giggled, bring him back down to earth. “You could smell his need? What are you? A werewolf?”

 

He smiled weakly. “I swear I could… It's hard to explain. I felt like I was on fire even before he touched me and when he kissed me, I felt like I was melting…”

 

“You swooned…”

 

There was this fire in my stomach, or like a knot tight with tension…”

 

“You were gonna cum in your pants…”

 

“I really thought I was gonna pass out. I just wanted him to tuck me as deep and as hard as he could. Just once. He'll ruin me otherwise.”

 

“He already did,” Mark said giggling.

 

He scowled. “Are you done?”

 

“Yes,” the elder tried to say solemnly and instead fell into a giggling fit immediately.

 

“Good ‘cause I am too.”

 

“I would want to watch,” Mark said after a minute of silence.

 

His foot shot out before he could stop himself, kicking Mark. “Get out of here, you creep! Go finish up your evening routine or something.”

 

Mark neatly rolled away and stood, giggling. “I'm not even gonna take that back. Assuming everything you said wasn't exaggerated, I'd pay money to watch him pound you in the nearest mattress,” he stopped and looked thoughtful for a second. “Even the nearest wall as you grab on to those thick, muscled broad shoulders for dear life…”

 

“이년이!” he screeched pulling at a throw pillow on the sofa and flinging it at his friend. “고조!”

 

He dodged the assault skillfully. “The tight walls of you ass milking every drop of him from his cock.”

 

“You're so crude,” he cried blushing to the roots of his hair as he threw another pillow.

 

“Oh, Jinyoungie. Don't act like a prude. We both know that's exactly what you were thinking,” Mark called from the bathroom.

 

“You're sick,” he huffed in defeat, not even bothering to deny the accusation.

 

“Wait,” Mark said, poking his head out of the door. “What if he has a small cock?”

 

“야!” he gasped.

 

“Now that would be an excellent end to the story.”

 

“The story already ended, you fool. He promised not to make any unwanted advances and I… believe him.”

 

“Nonononono,” Mark said laughing. “We need an ending to this story. Is his cock big or not?”

 

“I'm going there to be the nanny of a seriously unhappy little boy - not to report to you the size of his dick.”

 

Mark's perfectly plump bowtie shaped lips curved into a demonic smile. “You've obviously never heard of multitasking.”

 

“Nope,” he denied, amused in spite of himself.

 

Mark expression sobered as he came out to stand at the doorway. “On a serious note though, you do realize I'm just kidding, right? I mean I don't expect you to fool around with your boss, but just don't go there unless you know for sure it's right for you.”

 

He smiled, touched at Mark's  sincere concern. “Yeah,” he said nodding. “You wanna know something weird?”

 

“What?”

 

“Have you ever met someone that just made you feel safe? Like no one would dare lay a hand on you because you're with them.”

 

Mark shook his head.

 

“While I was in Jaebum's arms, he made me feel safe - absolutely, completely safe. Like in that moment - just for that moment - I was his and every other man wouldn't dare touch his possession.”

 

The expression that claimed Mark's facial features wasn't one someone would describe as an uwu. There were only two words that would best describe it and they weren't what he expected, but should've. Fear and concern.

 

“I'm not worried about others touching you, Jinyoungie. I'm worried about him touching you. If he can get you this messed up in minutes, I can only dream of what he could do to you in hours, days even, and what he can do with you under him.”

Chapter Text

The sun was high in the sky when he got to the mansion the next day. The skies were clear with streaks of white clouds and the birds were chirping as he stood outside the mansion gates. Without prompting, the small gate clicked open and he stepped through dragging his luggage behind him.

 

There seemed to be no visible surveillance on the mansion grounds, but as he walked up the drive to the house, he caught sight of a black heel or tail end of jacket several times from the corner of his eye. It was only then he realized that all the secretive surveillance gave the place the impression that no one was watching, and he began to wonder what he’d had gotten himself into.

 

The day before felt like a lifetime ago and an unsettling wariness settled over him. Who is Im Jaebum? Aside from real estate tycoon, what else does he dabble in? Oh, God. He stopped midway to the huge front doors. What if Mark is right and he does have connections to the Geondals? What if he kills people? What if the reason why Youngjae refuses to speak has something to do Jaebum? What if…

 

What if you're just trying to talk yourself out of this? a tiny voice in his head asked.

 

He shook his head as he continued on his way. He rolled his eyes. Coward. He was just lowering the handle of his luggage when Cookie came out and took it from him. “Got anymore luggage?”

 

He gaped at the man. “N-no,” he stammered, stunned the man could speak a complete sentence.

 

“Good,” the man replied, lifting his luggage as if it weighed nothing to carry up the three small steps leading up to the front door. “Follow me.”

 

They walked towards the huge oak door, paneled with a stained glass mural of a single red rose. He lifted a cover and punched in several numbers in quick succession that he couldn't even see what it was - not that he even tried. It was hard enough trying to even see around the man's bulky frame.

 

“Can I get the code?” he asked.

 

The man looked back at him oddly. “I wasn't instructed to,” he answered blandly.

 

“Don't you think it would be a good idea for me to have it if I'm to care for the Im children?” he asked.

 

“I wasn't given any instructions about it.”

 

He sighed, resigning himself to asking Jaebum himself until Cookie spoke again.

 

“The code today will be useless tomorrow anyway.”

 

“Oh.”

 

When they entered, the house Cookie handed him over to the head housekeeper - one Mrs. Nody Bhulwakul. She was the polar opposite of Cookie. She immediately offered him a  warm smile, taking him on a tour of the mansion.

 

It was the second time for him to see, but the first time he had been in a rush and nervous - in spite of the turn of events. Now, as he looked around and took the place in, he couldn’t believe the grandiosity of the place. The place had six bedrooms - each with its own reception room and attached bath - indoor leisure complex with a swimming pool, gym, sauna, and basement. The house itself only took up approximately 14,000 square feet of the 1.6 acre plot of land that included a golf course! Each floor was conveniently accessible by two elevators and four sets of stairways, one of each were situated in a corner of the house.

 

If Jaebum wanted to let people know he had money, he had succeeded. Every room was decorated with taste. Unique works of art and massive paintings filled the walls. Tabletops were flourished with every size of intricate designs from simple books, manuscripts, statuettes, vases and more. From the grand piano to the library filled with books from floor to ceiling, the mansion was magnificent. The swimming pool room had an entire wall of glass on one side that was filled with colorful fish that glittered in the aquarium's soft blue lighting. Mrs. Nody had kept up a running commentary as they walked through and had let slip that the light came shining into the aquarium was natural. Watching them had made him wonder what they would look like at night when it was lit by the moon's soft glow.

 

As they walked the house, it was oddly quiet save for the clicking of Mrs. Nody's heels on the tiled floors and the occasional squeak of his shoes. It seemed more like a mausoleum or museum than a home of a once perfectly happy family. There were no toys strewn around. In fact, it almost seemed hard to believe two children under the age of seven lived in it. Everything was neat, tidy, and squeaky clean.

 

As they moved room to room, he was introduced to the staff they crossed paths with. There had to be at least fifteen of them, most of which were of Asian descent, but there were simply too many of them for him to remember their names right off the bat. He did remember the butler's name though, since they shared it. It had been amusing for a second until jealousy filled him for some odd reason.

 

He did notice that Mrs. Nody didn't take him to Jaebum's office and he began to wonder if the man was even home. He had to shake and remind himself that he shouldn't care. He was there to care for the man's children and find out why Youngjae wasn't speaking when he was clearly capable of doing so.

 

When they came to the kitchen, he was glad to find it was designed in a more homey way. It was spacious with its wide, long countertops and separated island. There he was introduced to the Chef - a lively young man with mischief in his eyes and attitude in his posture. It was hard not to make friends with Wonpil when he felt like they came from the same bird, just different feathers - plus the man was in charge of his meals.

 

Did Jaebum drink tea or coffee, and what type? Is he a green tea type of person, or black coffee no sugar? He rolled his eyes, needing to remind himself that it wasn't his business.

 

As they passed a set of double doors, Mrs. Nody nodded towards them and informed him that they led to Jaebum's private suite a floor above them. He schooled his features to cover the interest he felt inside. What would I find behind those doors? A ten-foot bed with Egyptian silk? A gold tub? The latest music system? Mirrors on the ceiling?

 

A part of him was piqued, while the other didn't want to know. Jaebum wasn't above forcing himself on a person.

 

No, it's better if I don't know.

 

It was then a thought struck him breathless.

 

What if he brings his latest conquests home and I'm forced to meet and talk to them politely?

 

He shuddered. He couldn't admit it even to himself, but he knew.

 

He was wildly jealous of anyone who might touch Jaebum.

Chapter Text

Eventually, he was shown to Yugyeom and Youngjae's suite, respectively. The bedrooms themselves were designed to fit a young learning prince and somehow they they felt appropriate. The bed had been made up, but he couldn't decide whether it had been the children who had fixed it or the staff, so he made a mental note to wake before  them to find out. Their closets, which could fit his entire room in it, were filled with designer clothes of every shade.

 

The “playroom” was departed from the actual room, and filled with toys and books on one side, while the other, had everything he would need to teach them individually or together - from a desk, whiteboard, carpet, laptop and boxes of puzzles. In the corner of Youngjae's playroom, he noticed a keyboard and wondered if the child ever wandered towards it.

 

He remembered the way Jaebum's eyes had glittered with grief when he recalled the way Youngjae had been before his silent spell. He had mentioned Youngjae loved the piano. What does he play? Does he lean towards the Baroque Era or the more modern Yiruma? Music might provide a way to break through the silence.

 

“Where are the children?” he finally asked Mrs. Nody when they exited Youngjae's room.

 

“They're with their governess.  You'll meet them later,” she said smiling softly.

 

The tour ended just down the hall from the children’s rooms.

 

“Mr. Im wanted you to lodge just down the hallway from the boys,” she said opening the door. “I hope it's to your liking.”

 

The room everything he could've dreamed of. Tall windows invited the blue skies and view of the elite neighborhood. The reception room was beautifully decorated with homey furniture, deeply contrasting the rest of the mansion’s expensive, lavish decor. In the bedroom, a huge four-poster bed covered in cotton, numerous pillows and a single folded fleece blanket at the foot of the bed sat as the centerpiece of the bedroom. It was at least six inches of the floor and surrounding it were matching dark cherry-red oak dressers. The walk-in closet was large enough for him to move into and live happily. The bathroom itself was a beauty to behold. It was complete with a large tub, standing shower, toilet and a Jacuzzi.

 

He had just begun to eye it hungrily when Lucy huffed an exhausted laugh herself. “I will leave you to unpack. Tyuzu, Mr. Im's Head PA will be around shortly to go over the schedule.”

 

He turned to her with a smile. “Thank you.”

 

With that, she slipped out of the room. For a while he sat on the bed, poking in the quiet elegance of the room and let himself dream. Dream of a life of luxury and expensive cocktail parties where he didn't have to worry about bills, bus or taxi fares, and his next meal. Dream of castles and white knights.

 

It took him a while to get to unpacking his luggage, but when he did, he found that his tiny belongings were parse in comparison to the large room. Oddly, they seemed to fit, but he was relieved to find that it would make for an easy getaway, if necessary. It was only when he was hanging up his clothes in the closet did he realize he didn't bring anything even remotely formal. Everything he had brought with him from his apartment were work clothes. None of them seemed to scream fuck me! and it brought a mixture of feelings he didn't care to delve into since he was sure he wouldn't to get Jaebum anyway.

 

His thoughts constantly circled back to Jaebum and the kind of man he was. It was obvious he was the kind to take what he wanted and he had to repeatedly remind himself that he was hired help - nothing more, nothing less.

 

He sat on his bed and took in the room again when a knock on the door broke his trance.

 

“Come in,” he called, standing up and smoothing his pants out.

 

A pretty young woman in her mid-twenties with light chestnut brown hair walked into the room. Her ramrod-straight thin body was clad in a sinful black square-neck bodycon dress. While the dress gave her a sexy, sophisticated look that reminded him of a modern witch, the bright smile on her face softened the appearance.

 

“Good afternoon,” she greeted shyly. “My name Chou Tzuyu. I wasn't here on the day you were interviewed by Mr. Im, which us regretful since I'm in charge of this house - everything and everyone in it. My job is to make yours easier. I don't live on site and I'm not always here, but,” she said reaching into the leather zipped binder she carried, “you can always reach me at this number,” she said handing him a card. “I'm available at all times - night or day - at all hours. If you have any request - and you will - you must contact me.”

 

He nodded. “I'm pleased to meet you, Mrs. Chou.”

 

“Please, call me Tzuyu. Mrs. Chou is my mother, and you're older than I am,” she said smiling sweetly, tucking in a loose strand of hair behind her ears.

 

He smiled back, albeit politely. I should probably update my resume to rainbow colors, he mused quietly. “Thank you.”

 

She took a few steps forward, pulling out a folder. “Here is a copy of your contract, NDA, and schedule. They're very simple really. Youngjae has a governess, but it's your responsibility to attend to him between each session. Yugyeom is the one who will be with most of the time. He has a very strict routine and must abide to it. Otherwise, the child will wreak havoc. Mr. Im likes that he's kept to his routine.”

 

He nodded, taking the folder from her.

 

“You can have Fridays or Saturdays off, but Sundays are free for you to do what you like. If you like, you can attend church with the little ones - that is if you are Korean Orthodox, but it's not required of you.”

 

“I'll take Saturdays, and I'll decide on church later.”

 

She nodded. “I'll let the staff know. Now, meals. Breakfast is served at seven-thirty, lunch at noon, and dinner will be at eight. You will eat with the staff after the children have eaten, or you can eat with them. The menu for the month is attached the schedule I just gave you. If there are any concerns or anything you want that isn't there, let me know and I will make the necessary adjustments.”

 

He leaves through the papers until he found one that had a chart on it. His eyes bulged a little in their sockets when he found that most were Korean dishes. “Everything looks great and I'm sure they'll be wonderful. I'm not allergic to anything, so please don't work around me,” he said smiling sheepishly.

 

“Good. Youngjae is currently not attending school and Yugyeom, of course, is too young to be attending, but their afternoons are packed. Youngjae has his studies to attend to and his governess ensures he does not fall behind with his school work. Mr. Im is a morning person, so he prefers for the children to rise early as well. He prides himself in instilling the habit into everyone in this household, so mind yourself. One of your responsibilities are to ensure that the children are up, dressed and have eaten breakfast before going about their day.”

 

He nodded again.

 

“Do you drink tea?”

 

“I'm sorry. What?” he asked stunned at the sudden inquiry.

 

“Tea. Do you drink it?”

 

He shook himself. “Occasionally.”

 

“We serve tea at four in the evening, but I'm sure Mrs. Nody wouldn't mind, if you were to request some.”

 

“I'll keep that in mind.”

 

“Now, Youngjae…,” she said trailing off. She looked at him with utmost seriousness. “He loves to play games,” she continued, “So after he has had his breakfast, he may drift off to the entertainment room for a game or two until his governess arrives. After his lessons, he has dance lessons, then martial arts training -”

 

He did a double take on that, wondering if he misheard, but a glance at Youngjae's schedule told him he didn’t. He frowned.

 

“Self-defense takes precedence in this household. Mr. Im insist on it, even for you.”

 

“Me?” he asked raising his brows.

 

“Yes. I think you'll find that it's easy, as they are just basic maneuvers to ensure you can protect the children in the event of a mishap.”

 

Mishaps?! Who would dare an attempt at causing harm to anyone in this household? Are they insane? The gate itself would be a feat to cross without getting caught, and if that didn't succeed the numerous black su-

 

“You'll settle in, in no time at all,” Tzuyu said, smiling at him, probably suspecting where his mind went.

 

“I'm sure I will,” he replied, flushing in embarrassment, as if she had caught him snooping.

 

She was about to say something when her phone pinged. Immediately, she extracted it from a pocket on her hip. A brief glance at it had her brows working slightly. She looked up at him. “I've been informed by Mr. Im that he would like for you to join him for dinner tonight. I believe he would like to hear if the house meets your expectation.”

 

“I am more than happy with everything so far.”

 

“Excellent. You can tell him just that. Tonight - at dinner,” she said “Again, welcome to Agapi . I will do everything in my power to ensure your success.”

 

With that, she swept out of the room before he could gather his thoughts and express his hesitancy of attending dinner that evening. He sighed  turning back to head towards the room with what would be his bed for however long. He looked around the room, still stunned at its magnificence.

 

“Oh, and it's almost lunch,” she said, poking her head back into the room. “Meet me outside your room in about fifteen minutes,” she said, letting it hang in the air.

 

He nodded. “Yeah, of course.”

 

“Good. I'll take you to meet the children then and you can have your meals together. I believe you've already met Youngjae, so that just leaves Yugyeom.”

 

He nodded again, only smiling genuinely. “Yes. Thank you. That would be amazing.”

Chapter Text

As he followed closely behind Tzuyu some fifteen minutes later, he tried his best to memorize his way around the house. It seemed pretty easy enough. Aside from the extra formal rooms, it seemed like any normal house - just stretched to allow more space for it denizens to move around freely.

 

When they entered the dining room, the children were already waiting for him patiently in what he would assume was their places at the table. Both were dressed in clothes other children would be envious of, the children stood from their seats and bowed to them respectfully. With the energy expected of a five year old, Yugyeom bounded up to him with a huge smile that warmed his heart.

 

“Hi, I'm Yugueom, and that's my hyung , Youngjae. He doesn’t talk anymore,” he announced. “But don't worry. I talk all the time. Can I call you Hyung ?”

 

He chuckled, bending down to tweak the little boy on the cheek. “Of course you can, you little cutie” he said.

 

The little boy looked annoyed, squirming away. “I'm not cute,” he huffed, folding his arms across his chest petulantly.

 

He shrugged, straightening. “Of course not. You are handsome.”

 

“Daddy said Hyung  and me are the most beautiful children he's every set eyes on.”

 

“I bet he did,” he said with a smirk.

 

Youngjae, on the other hand, slowly inched towards him with a shy smile. As the child came closer, he reached out a hand. “Hi, Youngjae,” he said with an encouraging smile.

 

Youngjae reached out and grasped his. For a second, they stood there holding hands before Youngjae's smile brightened. With his other hand, he gestured for him to follow and he let the child lead him to the table. Youngjae only released his hand when they got to the large dining table so he could pull a chair out beside his place.

 

As he sat, he noticed Yugyeom had followed them, but inside of moving to sit on his other side, the little boy stayed on the other side of the table. He frowned. The chandelier above the table lit the room in colors like a prism with its crystals and accents of silver. The table was much too large for a family of three. Made of what he recognized as aspen and poplar wood, the surface was finished with wood veneer and antique platinum and extended about 120 inches in length. The chairs - even from where he stood, he could tell were padded and made of some expensive fabric that filled him with a anxious feeling. He sure as hell didn’t want to drop any food on the upholstery, accidentally or otherwise.

 

The whole room had been decorated with the kind of formal elegance that intimidated even him. He looked over at Tzuyu, who stayed standing at the door before he looked at the children. He stopped his wandering on Youngjae, who looked right back at him with a frown of his own.

 

“What do you think, Youngjae? Too much?” he asked secretively.

 

Youngjae nodded.

 

Yugyeom looked down at the food. “We don't have to finish it all.”

 

Youngjae snickered, rolling his eyes. He shook his head at his brother.

 

He bit his lip from laughing at the child's endearing confusion. He switched his gaze between both children as he asked, “Should we find a cozier place to eat?”

 

Youngjae nodded, but Yugyeom’s frown deepened. “But, where?”

 

He turned back to Tzuyu. “Can we move to that sunny room next to the kitchen? I think there was a table there that should fit all of us and all this food.”

 

Tzuyu's eyes widened. “Tha-that’s where the staff’s children eat when they come around.”

 

“Perfect,” he said smiling gently, ignoring the look of slight irritation on her face.

 

“Fine,” she finally said, turning to give Lucy instructions in Mandarin.

 

The old woman arched her brows in surprised, but with an oddly victorious smile, she, in turn, turned to bark instructions to the servants at hand.

 

He looked back at the children with a smile. “Let’s go.”

 

Both children immediately jumped from their seats and pulled him along as they ran from the room. He let them pull him towards the servant dining room where a modest 4-person table sat beside an uncurtained window that was open. The sunlight from outside spilled onto the table, lighting its smooth unvarnished surface welcomingly. They stopped short of the entrance and looked around the room He walked in and pulled two chairs out. Without a word, Yugyeom raced forward and jumped on one, while Youngjae walked in more timidly, as though he were afraid someone would jump out from behind a statuette and give him an earful.

 

It wasn't until they  actually sat for a few minutes, did Youngjae begin to relax, and even once smiled secretively at him. Lunch was an array of healthy Korean dishes that were child-friendly - galbi, tteokbokki, bulgogi, and omurice with eggplant slices coated with eggs. At one point, Tzuyu had come in to ask if he would like something separate for himself, but he politely declined.

 

He looked at Youngjae now and noticed the child didn't pick and choose from his plate like his younger brother did. No vegetables were set aside in distaste and everything he had set on the boy's plate was tucked away neatly. “You eat your vegetables so well,” he told her proudly. “Do you like vegetables?”

 

He shook his head and turned back to his meal.

 

“Then why do you eat them so well?” he asked taken aback. “I mean, it's great that you do, you need the nutrients in them to grow as tall and healthy as your dad, but it's kind of weird.”

 

He smiled tinily, reaching into his pocket. He pulled out a notepad and scribbled on it one single phrase: He makes me.

 

He stared at the notepad, frowning for a second too long. “Your dad?” he asked as gently as he could without showing the tense panic building in him.

 

Youngjae seemed to shut down after that, picking up his glass of apple juice. His shoulders however didn't hide the weight of his words as they slumped forward.

 

The ‘ he ’ Youngjae referred to concerned him. So far, he's only met two ‘hes’ within the household and an unsettling feeling told him it couldn't be Cookie. Whether it was positive or negative, it nagged at him for some reason. It was natural for a father to scold his child into eating their vegetables, but never in a fearsome way that a child would react in such a way.

 

He need to know, one way or another. “Who is he?” he asked.

 

He didn't respond, seeming to focus on Yugyeom, who sat across from him sipping on a glass of cold chocolate milk. He took the notepad and wrote his question down before sliding it back to its owner.

 

He glanced at the notepad briefly before shaking his crown of brown waves expressionlessly, and returning back to his meal. For a moment, he forgot he was speaking to a child. It was like speaking to an adult who seemed more in control of their emotions than he was. The shift in Youngjae's demeanor from excited child to cold, aloof creature knocked him off kilter and left him deeply troubled and unnerved.

 

Deciding, they need more time to build a level of trust, he moved the conversation away and into clearer waters. “You both have a free hour after lunch. What would you like to do?” he asked looking over at Yugyeom.

 

The world shifted again and Youngjae lit up like a Christmas tree. Quickly, he scooped up his notepad from the table and began to scribble on it again, while Yugyeom sat thoughtfully. When he was done, Youngjae slid the notepad towards him.

 

Blonde hair, like GD-Hyung, it read.

 

He snorted, looking up to find Youngjae looking at him pleadingly. He knew immediately Youngjae was trying to manipulate him. It was painfully obvious he had already asked an adult and had been rejected, so he was trying his luck with him.

 

Yugyeom stood on his chair to look at the notepad. “너 미쳤어? 아빠는 우리가 머리를 빨갛게 염색하지 못하게 하셔!” he shrieked, ridiculing his older brother as he threw himself back down in his chair, laughing.

 

“야!” he said more out of sheer surprise and fear rather than anything else as he reached out to steady the boy before he toppled from the chair in his fit of laughter. "Whether or not your dad will allow it is not something for you to laugh at your hyung for, or call him crazy."

 

Yugyeom bowed his head. “미안해, 형,” the child said, beginning to hiccup.

 

He turned back to Youngjae and found that the child was nowhere to be found. Fractically, he whipped his head around in every direction in search of the boy until finally he was about to stand when a movement under the table caught his eye.

 

He squeezed between the edge of the table and his chair until he came the crown of Youngjae’s head came into view. He reached out a comforting hand, but thought better of it and retracted it. “What’s wrong? Did I scare you?” he asked instead, gently.

 

The young boy flinched at his voice, burying his nose further into the crook of his elbow.

 

“I’m sorry,” he apologized solemnly. “If you come out, I promise not to raise my voice again.”

 

After a minute, Youngjae lifted his head to seek out his gaze. The boy must’ve seen his sincerity and slowly inched out from under the table. He took his notepad and scribbled out a message.

 

Loud sounds scare me, it read.

 

His shoulders slumped in guilt. “I’m sorry,” he repeated. “I didn’t know. I won’t do it again.”

 

He smiled sheepishly, nodding his head. The promise seemed to pacify Youngjae, but the unsettling feeling in his gut only intensified.

 

He thought back on Youngjae’s request and reached out to the boy to ruffle his hair. “I will see what I can do about getting something to color your hair. It’ll be our little secret.,” he said winking at Youngjae.

 

Normally, he wouldn’t even entertain the thought of coloring a child’s hair, but he also thought it could be a bonding experience for both of them. He needed to gain Youngjae’s trust, and fast. Although he thought him saying so would lift Youngjae’s spirits again, the exact opposite is what happened.

 

Youngjae’s shoulders slumped and the light in his eyes dimmed even more, but he nodded anyways, hanging his head.

 

After lunch, he took the children into the activities room down the hall from the main reception room where he suggested a game of Clue. He tried not to blink an eye as Yugyeom showed him the board made of mahogany, but ended up gaping at it. It was the luxury edition that shadow-cased the ‘rooms’ and the tiny furniture in them looked to be made of the same mahogany as the rest of the box and lidded over with glass. The pieces themselves looked like tiny glass plungers scaled upwards with magnetic plates on the bottom. The dice were transparent glass with the dots on them painted a deep red to match the redness of the mahogany finishing. The tiny weapons were made of materials that made the game more surreal than it should’ve been.

 

He swallowed as he  carefully placed the board on the table, and took out the murder pieces. One by one, he placed them in each room. He took the cards and divided them: suspects, weapon and room. He shuffled each deck and they each chose one, and he placed them in the provided holder before placing it in the middle of the board. He took the remaining eighteen cards and shuffled them together before dividing them again evenly between the three of them.

 

Smiling, he picked up Mrs. White. “I’ll take the servant.”

 

“But you’re not a servant,” he snickered. “You’re our nanny.” He picked up Colonel Mustard.

 

He chuckled. “But you’re daddy pays me, so yes, that does make me a servant, I guess.” Still he let Yugyeom switch his piece with Mrs. Peacock, a woman rumored to be based of a wealthy woman in the original English version of the game.

 

Youngjae didn’t seem to hesitate as he picking a character. He took the glass piece with red wispy streaks in it and placed it at the starting point.

 

“Ms. Scarlet,” he observed. “Why her?”

 

Youngjae looked up at him with a sad smile before he reached into his pocket for his notepad. Momma , he wrote out.

 

He smiled gently. “You must miss her,” he said.

 

Yugyeom chose that moment to pipe up. “I never met Momma. I was a tiny baby when she passed away,” he said sadly. “ Hyung , do you think I’ll ever meet Momma?” the child asked innocently.

 

His gut clenched at the question. He took a deep breath as he turned to the younger of the two boys. “One day, Gyeomie,” he answered. “But always remember that your Momma is watching over you, okay?”

 

“How?” Yugyeom asked looking up at him with bright eyes.

 

“She just is,” he answered.

 

That seemed to end the conversation and they fell into silence. After the third or fourth round, he realized that the two children were seasoned player and he was in no way at an advantage with his age. As he passed the study, he enter and made a suggestion. “I suggest it was Ms. Scarlet in the study with a rope,” he announced, taking Youngjae piece and placed it in the study with his own piece along with a rope.

 

Youngjae shook his head adamantly. He whipped out his notepad and scribbled something in a rush. No, Hyung. It was Mrs. Peacock in the library with a revolver, he wrote.

 

He studied the board again along with the cards in his hand. Through process of elimination he came down to two answers, each one they had suggested. He looked up at Youngjae and the child hada a pleading look in his eyes instead what he had expected of challenge.

 

Concern gnawed at the pit of his stomach. Is he trying to tell me something? “Okay. Let see,” he said taking the provided envelope from the center of the board. “Loser has to set up the easel for painting after snacks.”

 

Youngjae didn’t even flinch at the suggestion. The child simply sat there patiently waiting for the big reveal. He took the cards out and placed each one faced down in the center of the board. He flipped the first one and Mrs. Peacock’s stern knowing eyes looked back at him. He flipped the center card and the revolver was like a punch to his gut. Its barrel glinted in the light dangerously. Before he could flip the third card, Lucy came into the room and he looked up at her, needing a distraction from the intense moment.

 

“Mr. Park, tea is being served in the tea room,” she announced.

 

Youngjae reached forward and flipped the third card before he walked out of the room. He looked down. The picture of the library with its numerous shelves filled with books and a simple set up of couches and a coffee table table took his breath away. He looked back in the direction of the doorway in time to see Youngjae looking back at him with a haunted look in his eyes before the child bowed his head and walked out. It was clear Youngjae was done sharing anything else for the day.

 

For the rest of the day, the game stay on his mind. He couldn’t shake the look he had seen in Youngjae’s eyes or how he had not seen the outcome of the game as clearly as Youngjae had. The gnawing feeling in his stomach remained and by six, the boys began to show signs of fatigue, so he fed and ran them a bath. By the time it was seven, Yugyeom was sound asleep, so he took the boy to his room and laid him to bed with a kiss on the head before drifting to Youngjae’s room.

 

When he got there, Youngjae was laying in bed with a book. He took the book and sat on a chair beside the bed. He didn’t want to push Youngjae for an answer, but he knew it was also too soon to be prying and he still needed to establish a foundation of trust with the boy, so he pushed away the feeling and read the book. As curious as he was, he also began to feel protective with Youngjae. He wanted to wrap the boy in a blanket and protect him from whatever haunted him. He read until Youngjae’s eyes really began to droop close and it was obvious he was fighting his sleep. Only then did he close the book.

 

He placed it on the nightstand and tucked the blanket under the boy. “Good night, Youngjae,” he whispered, tucking a strand of hair behind his ear. “Sweet dreams.”

 

The little boy smiled dreamily at him before he let his eyes close. He shut the light off and walked out.

 

He walked down the hall to his room and found he still had some time before dinner, so he decided to take a shower and change before heading downstairs. After his shower, he walked into his closet and eyed his limited wardrobe, gauging its sexiness only to curl his lip in distaste. The appeal of the two outfits he had packed for occasions didn’t exactly fall into the category of a ‘come on,’ which in a way was a good thing.

 

After that kiss and our agreement, I don’t want to give him any ideas.

 

He settled with a plain white button down shirt with a v-neck and blue jeans before slipping on a pair of comfortable loafers. Smart, casual, and yet professional.

 

Besides, it’s just a casual dinner, he thought to himself. Nothing more.

Chapter Text

As he headed down the marble steps of the staircase, his hands slipped on the banister’s cool surface from the nervous sweat coating his palm. Dinner had begun about seven minutes earlier, but just as he was about to walk out the door of his suite, vivid memories of what had happened between and Jaebum the previous evening began to play in his head like an old film. It tormented him and he found himself opening his door to walk back in.

 

He hesitated, unsure of his own convictions - haunted even. His own mind still in a grey area of how to deal with the tempest that was Im Jaebum. He knew that if he went to the man still in that grey area, he would fall vulnerable to the man’s allure. Eventually, he lectured himself out of his room, berating himself on his own cowardice and unsecurity. He would meet the man head on.

 

Straightening his spine, he stepped into the dining room again for the second time that day. The silver in the chandelier glinted against the crystal glasses on the table almost blinding him in their brilliance. His eyes adjusted to the light after a moment, and he found the devil himself already seated at the head of the table, looking as brooding and impatient as a mad bull.

 

His eyes skittered to the other end of the table were a place was set out for him already. The table was long enough to provide a more than respectable distance from the man and he sighed in relief at that. The further away he was from the man, the better it would be for him and the weaker his effect on him would be.

 

“Come and sit next to me,” he invited in that smooth velvety tone and he froze in place.

 

The much-needed distance from the man he had hoped for slipped away as fast as it had come. “If you don’t mind,” he began, unable to look in Jaebum’s direction. “I would prefer-…”

 

“I mind,” Jaebum said, cutting him off.

 

He snapped his gaze up at the man, who looked right back at him calmly. His eyes glittered like ice and he felt as if there wasn’t enough oxygen in the room. He forced himself to suck in a big gulp of air. It was like getting hit in the chest by a swell rip curl. It was insane, but he had to admit that in the small space of a day, he missed the man. The way his powerful personality affected him was incredible, to say the least.

 

All his hopes of Jaebum’s strong effect on him being inaccurate - a neat trick of his mind - was dashed away in a flash. The man’s mere presence proved otherwise. If anything, he appeared even more swoon-worthy.

 

It was obvious by his damp hair that swept backwards, that he had just taken a shower. The top two buttons of his maroon shirt was unbuttoned, revealing he had tattoos on his pale, toned chest. His sleeves were folded up tightly to his elbows and his small fingers were wrapped around the stem of a glass of red wine.

 

He steadied his gaze and looked into Jaebum's eyes to take it away from corded muscles of his forearm, and the world dropped away. The reality of him and Jaebum alone in the room took him under the rip curl. He couldn't look away. All the mental preparation he had done was all for naught. The sexual attraction between them, almost indecent as it was, was hard to ignore or brush away.

 

Jaebum lifted his glass and took a sip. He watched as his Adam’s apple bobbed in his throat and he swallowed tightly before he shook his head minutely and looked away. With a deep, shaky breath, he walked to the vacant seat beside Jaebum and sat.

 

The kindly butler he remembered to have shared his name appeared out of nowhere and with excessive politeness, laid his utensils on the table and a napkin on his lap.

 

He turned to look at Jaebum, and their eyes locked again. It was like looking at a pendulum that only had one intention - to hypnotize him. For a few seconds, he fell into that gaze. His entire body buzzed with energy, but it was mixed with a strange sensation of being on his hands and knees searching. Searching for his lost heart or soul, and he knew then, Jaebum really was the devil.

 

The noise of cutlery broke his trance and he dropped his gaze. What is happening to me? Why am I getting out of control? Snap out of it, Jinyoung! He's your boss. You are a professional. Ugh, I'm either going crazy or this man has some kind of magical powers, he thought with irritation.

 

He dragged a ragged breath to steady his nerves and regretted it as Jaebum’s aftershave filled his lungs. It seemed to command the tiny hairs on his nape and arms to stand at attention. Every fiber of his being seemed to respond to Jaebum and he thought again of what he had said to Mark. He hadn't lied when he said he could smell Jaebum's desire for him, nor did he imagine it. His mind felt restless on top of the buzzing adrenaline in his body. He felt drunk.

 

He looked away, choosing instead to watch as Mr. Park re-set his place in front of him.

 

“Red or white?” Jaebum asked, pulling his attention back to him.

 

“Red “ he said instantly, his voice coming out raspy, but very shaky.

 

Jaebum picked up the decanter of red wine and expertly poured some into his glass.

 

“Thank you,” he said more steadily, trying to hide his unsettled state.

 

It didn't seem to escape Jaebum. The man simple lifted his glass in a toast with a cocky, knowing smirk. “To our health.”

 

“To our health,” he whispered helplessly. He took a sip of the wine. It seemed to be rich, but for all he knew, it could’ve been raspberry Kool-aid. All he knew was wet and it was moisturizing his parched throat. He placed his glass down. “I'm sorry for being late.”

 

Jaebum’s lips curved up into a perfect, pearly white smile as he shrugged one broad shoulder nonchalantly. “I didn't notice after you made your stunning entrance.”

 

He felt himself blush with ridiculous pleasure and a tiny bit in relief. “Thank you.”

 

Beneath the table though, he made a conscious effort to keep his knees from brushing against Jaebum's. Above the table, he avoid any sort of contact - to afraid of what might happen if they do touch. He didn't trust himself. Even in his ‘resting’ state, Jaebum was like a panther - dark, masculine, and lazily powerful. There was only one way the night would end and he was determined not to take the route Jaebum was subtly leading him down.

 

The need to take control made him do a mental about-face as he withdrew his hands from the table and folded them in his lap. “The children are lovely,” he said quietly. “Tell me about them.”

 

Jaebum's expression softened. “Yugyeom is a… He's a brat,” he began chuckling softly, “there's no other way to put it. He loves chocolate milk and shiny shoes. Mrs. Nody's son, Bambam, is his his best friend. They play together on days Bambam isn't in school. He's always been tall for his age - he must've gotten it from my dad - but Bambam in his own lanky way, made him feel normal, even gentled him out. I guess you can say he's a gentle giant. He loves…-” He paused, and the muscles in his jaw flexed. “He began to talk not too long ago actually. I mean, he was talking, but not complete sentences like he does now. Like it was God's way of filling the silence Youngjae left.”

 

At the thought of talking and Youngjae, Jaebum's tone turned… Bitter? Confused? Resentful? He wasn't a parent himself, but it was clear from Jaebum’s expression that the man felt he was responsible for his son's silence. Like he was lacking and didn't know how to improve. He felt a tug of compassion for the man.

 

“And Youngjae?” he asked slowly, not really wanting to push Jaebum, but needing to know.

 

Jaebum's head fell into his hands. “Youngjae remembers his mother more than Yugyeom does. Before Nayeon passed, he would walk around the house from room to room, singing until Nayeon came home. He had the most angelic, powerful voice I have ever heard in such a tiny person. Nayeon was a singer, so they would spend hours together at the piano or in the studio.”

 

“What happened to her?”

 

“She passed a year ago,” Jaebum replied, finally lifting his head. His eyes were suddenly cold as stones. Flat and utterly dead.

 

“I'm sorry,” he whispered.

 

He nodded distantly, but his fingers were gripping the edge of the table hard enough to leave indentations in the woodwork. He could see Jaebum didn't want to talk about it, but he needed to know in order to better understand Youngjae. “How did he take it? Did he understand that she was gone forever?”

 

Jaebum sighed. “He’s never once asked about her since I broke it to him. He's a child, but sometimes, he seems more aware than most adults.”

 

He nodded in agreement. “Yes, he does. I sensed that while spending time with him and Yugyeom today. He chose only the questions he wanted to answer.”

 

“He wasn't always like that,” Jaebum said looking him in the eyes. We used to be very close. He used to wait for me on the steps to come home, and we'd get in the Porsche and just go on a drive. I would take the top off and let him stand on the seat to sing into the winds. He loved it. Now, he won't even leave the house and isolates himself - filling his time with his studies, reading, drawing or playing computer games.”

 

He nodded. “Tzuyu told me as much. Your late wife passed away a year ago, but Youngjae stopped talking a few months ago?”

 

Jaebum frowned. “Seven months to be exact. It happened while I was away on a business trip. When I left, he was talking, but by the time I came back… he had completely stopped talking. Thankfully, he's a smart kid and communicates using a notepad.”

 

“Did something happen while you were away?”

 

The man shook his head. “According to the staff, no. Nothing out of the ordinary. Youngjae woke up one morning and decided that, for whatever reason, he didn't want to anymore. I thought he was playing at first, but as time went on…,” Jaebum said, pursing his lips as he held his palms out, facing up.

 

“And it's not anything physical?”

 

Jaebum shook his head again. “It was the first thing I had checked. All the necessary test had been done. His psychologist said it was latent trauma, which I wouldn't have believed if she wasn't the best in her field.” The frown on his face deepened before he continued, “The analysis would've made sense if Youngjae didn't have a grieving period, but that's not the case. He cried every night, for months - calling out for Nayeon in his sleep and sometimes even when he was awake. It took him awhile to come out of his grief, but he did. I set aside work and made sure we pulled through together as a family. Only when I thought he was moving into a place of acceptance did I go back to work. I left for a week and when I got back, nothing. Not a word. I tried to bribe him with trips to DisneyLand and the newest games, but nothing I placed in front of him made a difference. He refuses to engage in any way until… you.”

 

“Nayeon… was it an accident?”

 

Jaebum's face became a hard mask. “I don't think that matters. Bringing it up only causes more pain.”

 

“I'm sorry. I didn't mean…” he began, but Jaebum looked at him and he clamped his mouth shut. What are you thinking about asking him that question?

 

“I didn't murder my wife, if that's what you're asking. I know what the papers said, but I would never have hurt Nayeon. She was my high school sweetheart and my best friend.”

 

He nodded in understanding even though he realized Jaebum was withholding something. As an employer, he had simply choosing to only share information he deemed fit for him to know. He could understand that. The curtness of his reply though, stung. It limited his knowledge of how to deal with Youngjae’s condition.

 

Mr. Park and several servants appeared with dishes and began to serve them. A shallow bowl of gogiguk swimming with scallions and a thin slice of bread was placed before him by a servant.

 

“Thank you,” he told the boy as he picked up his spoon. He looked at Jaebum, waiting for him to have a taste, but the man smiled at him encouragingly. He took a spoonful and tried to savor it, but he was too excited to even taste the thing.

 

“How is it?” Jaebum asked.

 

“Good. Thank you,” he lied.

 

After that, no words were spoken. There was only the sound of their spoons clinking against the bowls.

 

“I heard you took the boys to eat in the servant dining room.”

 

“Yes, I did,” he said slowly.

 

“Why?”

 

He scoffed looking around the room. “This room is far too intimidating for children their age. I wanted them to relax.”

 

“Ah, I see. They'll have to eat in here when I'm home though.”

 

“Or you could eat with us,” he challenged.

 

“I could… but Lucy would know all my secrets.”

 

“She doesn’t already?” he teased arching a brow.

 

Amusement lit Jaebum's eyes making the moles above his left eye seem to dance. “Touché.”

 

Before he could say something, Mr. Park came back in with the next course - rice and dakgangjeong supported with banchan dishes of fried fish, buchu kimchi, japchae, bulgogi, makgalbijjim, and jokbal. The mouthwatering dishes filled his nostrils and he began to feel a little homesick.

 

He watched as Jaebum pulled the plate of fish towards him and began to expertly fillet it. The first piece hr pulled away from the bone and skin of the fish was deposited onto his plate before the man worked on getting a piece for himself.

 

“Thank you,” he said weakly.

 

Jaebum simply smiled.

 

He had just began to relax a bit and dig into his food when a thought struck him. “What about school?” he asked. “Will Youngjae being attending? The interaction with other children may help.”

 

Jaebum shook his head, his jaw tightening. “I don't other children teasing him. In his current state, it would be more of a punishment. Why put him through all that when I'm confident he'll talk again? He just needs more time and guidance.”

 

“What about outings? From what you've told me, he won't even leave the premises.”

 

Jaebum frowned, folding his arms across his chest. “Yes. He refuses to leave whenever I try to persuade him into attempt it. The first time it happened, I thought it was just a temper tantrum. The second time, he fainted and since, I haven't attempted at it. I've been having his psychologist visit us instead. He might try, if it's you though.”

 

“I could try. Fresh air and a bus ride might just do it.”

 

A look of disapproval marred Jaebum's face then. “No. No public transportations. You'll be taken wherever you need to go by the staff. You just need to ask.”

 

“Can I ask why you decided on getting a caregiver? I mean, Yugyeom is understandable because he's still young, but for Youngjae… He has his governess for his educational needs and more than enough people to attend to everything else in between.”

 

“His psychologist recommended it. I'm constantly in and out of the house attending to my business and the staff are too busy attending to their duties. She thought it would be good for him to have someone solely focused on him. A nurturing touch, so to speak. Something I didn't know I lacked.”

 

“I see.” He studied the man as their dishes were replaced again with bingsu. Jaebum seemed genuinely clueless of his own son's silence, but more importantly, devoted to making him better. It was… admirable - endearing too.

 

“Do you have any special tricks up your sleeves on how to help him?” Jaebum asked.

 

He had just taken his first bite of the delicious dessert, so he let it melt on his tongue and swallowed before he answered. “Not exactly. I haven't figured  out how to attack the invisible wall he has up. I have decided to work on gain his trust first and that means setting boundaries of where I can go and how far before I start pushing those boundaries slowly.”

 

Mr. Park came back in and filled their glasses before departing again.

 

Unconsciously, he sucked on the spoon as he thought about Youngjae. When he looked up again at Jaebum, the man was staring at his lips and knew instantly Jaebum was turned on. Stark desire was written in his dark eyes and a matching urge ran through him. A part of him wanted Jaebum to pull him into his lap or bend him over the table.

 

Just a part.

 

His cheeks burned at the thought. He was in dangerous territory and the other part of him screamed at him to get up and leave the room… and it was the part of him in that moment that made the most sense.

 

He pushed back his chair and stood. “Thank you for dinner, but I think I'm going to bed now.”

 

Jaebum stood too. “I look forward to more dinners with you, Jinyoung-ah.”

 

He gasped. “Ye… 예?” The first one had been meant as a confirmation before he realized what the man had called him.

 

Jaebum chuckled softly. He leaned forward and took his hand. “잘자, 진녕아,” he said, laying a kiss against his knuckles.

 

He pulled his hand away and bowed stiffly before he hastily walked out the room. He had to will himself into walking instead of running like his heart was doing. He didn't stop or look back, and when he got to his room, he leaned against the door and closed his eyes. He took a deep breath in as he pressed his palm against him chest afraid that his heart would leap out of his chest if he let go.

 

When he finally calmed down enough to where he could calm his panting, he opened his eyes and looked around his suite. “What have I gotten myself into?” he asked into the empty room.

 

With a groan, he pushed away from the door and began to pull off his clothes. As he changed into his pajamas, he made a decision to look in on the children before retiring for the night. He walked across the hall to Yugyeom's room first. The sight of him stretched out on his bed made him giggle. No matter how tall he was for his age, the boy still slept like a toddler curled up in the prone position and rest his head on his tiny hands like a cat. He covered Yugyeom with his blanket and tucked it in before he left the room and made his way to Youngjae's room.

 

Youngjae was fast asleep as well. His vulnerable sleeping face made his heart melt like bingsu on his tongue. From the first moment he had met Youngjae in the hallway, something about the boy had drew him in.

 

No matter what, Youngjae, I will get to the root of your problem and I will fight your demons with you. One way or another, we'll overcome them. I promise you that.

 

He left the room and went back to his own. As he slipped between the sheets, he thought about Jaebum. What would his bedroom look like? What would I find at the top of those elevators?

Chapter Text

He sat back down as he watched Jinyoung walk away. The tension in his shoulders didn't take away from the tightening of his jeans against his ass as tried to walk away as fast as he could with dignity and grace. The sight only served to make his jeans tighten uncomfortably.

 

What is it about this man that makes my blood turn to fire? He does it so effortlessly. Everyone I've come across were willing to fall on their knees with their mouths wide open to pleasure me and take whatever I cared to give them.

 

Not Jinyoung. No, with Jinyoung it was somehow different.

 

Damn it! This is the last shit I need. I can't have him walking around the house showing me what he's got while I chase him like a rutting dog.

 

Hell, he had wanted to bend Jinyoung over his desk the evening they had first met. All throughout dinner, he had to pretend he was enjoying his meal when really, all he wanted to do was bury his face between the man's ass cheeks and taste him. Jinyoung would've most likely struggled, but he would've found pleasure in that too. Pleasure in making the man submit completely to him. He was sure all of Jinyoung’s efforts to resist him were a pretense. There was no way someone could be that good at faking desire in their eyes or trembling fingers. No, Jinyoung had it as bad as he did. Possibly, worse.

 

It was obvious Jinyoung was cracking. It would be an interesting thing to watch as Jinyoung struggled to resist him, resist it before the man finally admitted defeat and came to him. He had to be patient. It wouldn't be long now. Soon, he'd be able to do just what he wanted to the man. Sooner or later, he'd be fucking Jinyoung in every position possible until he was all fucked out.

 

Smiling, even through the heat Jinyoung stirred in him, he left the dining room as well. The strong desire for the dark beauty gnawed at his insides making his cock hard and his balls heavy. He made his way to the pool room, deciding that a few laps would exhaust him enough to go to sleep.

 

Twenty laps later, he finally flipped on his back in the water and stared up at the ceiling. A quick glance down at his cock only confirmed what he already knew. The damn thing was still hard as a rock and the tip was red as beet begging for release as thoughts of a particular round bottom floated in the back of his mind. He groaned in annoyance.

 

Flipping back, he swam to the deep end of the pool. When he reached the edge, he turned his back to the wall and curled his fist around his length. A groan of slight relief escaped him and he tipped his head back letting it was over him. He shut his eyes and began to lazily stroke himself as an image of Jinyoung rose up, his milky skin glistening with sweat. His heart began to pump wildly when the image came closer and closer until the man wrapped his plump, red lips around the tip of his cock.

 

He wanted to fuck that mouth so badly. He wanted Jinyoung to look up at him with those dark black eyes as he ruined the man. He knew Jinyoung would ruin him too.

 

He gripped the edge of the pool as he felt himself get closer and closer to exploding in his own hand. Jinyoung scent hit him and that did him in. Growling deep in the back of his throat, he came. Hot cum spurred from the tip of his cock and into the clear blue  water.

 

Even in the midst of his climax, he heard it. Only a tiny gasp, but years of training and alertness kicked in. He opened his eyes to see Jinyoung standing at the other end of the pool. His eyes were wide with shock and his lips were parted slightly.

 

His chest was heaving as if he had run a marathon and his pulse was still racing, but smirked continuing to pump the last of his cum out. Jinyoung watched him until he let himself go. He leaned back against the wall and laid his arms across the edge, waiting.

 

After a moment, Jinyoung seemed to snap out of his trance. His ears and cheeks flushed with color and he instantly turned away. “Oh my God! I'm so sorry, sir. I didn't mean to intrude.”

 

He felt no type of shame or embarrassment. In fact, he was amused by these turn of events. Jinyoung however looked as if he wished a black hole would appear under him and save him.

 

Jinyoung began to walk away and he couldn't stop himself before he let out one single command that even after he uttered it, he couldn’t find himself to regret.

 

“Stop.”

 

Jinyoung instantly froze in place.

 

He smiled. “Turn around.”

 

Slowly, Jinyoung whirled on his heels to face him lifting his chin as he went.

 

A fierce excitement shot through him like an adrenaline rush. “Why are you leaving?” he asked, relaxing against the edge of the pool. He ran his eyes along Jinyoung’s exposed torso. He stared hungrily at the dusty pink nipples, flat chest and hard muscles that Jinyoung hid behind his unsavory clothes - drinking in the sight. It was more than what he had imagined and the water's reflection dancing over his skin only enticed him more.

 

Jinyoung lifted the towel in his hand and wrapped it around his shoulders. “I apologize -”

 

“For what?” he cut off.

 

Jinyoung bit his lip, closing his eyes for a second as if trying to compose himself.

 

He couldn’t hide his amusement anymore, or anything really. “For purposely walking in on me or not having the balls to go ahead and come in for a swim?”

 

Jinyoung's eyes snapped open. “I didn't purposely walk in…” he began to say in exasperation before he stopped and looked away.

 

“Get in,” he ordered.

 

“What?”

 

“You came for a swim, so get in.”

 

Jinyoung bit his lip, looking thoughtful and yet still uncertain.

 

“I won't touch you unless you want me too if, of course, that's what's stopping you. Unless you're just afraid to get in the water with me…”

 

He let the implication hang in the air between them and waited to see what Jinyoung would do. Second ticked by, until Jinyoung lifted his chin in defiance and pulled his towel away from his shoulders to lay it on a chair. He ducked his head underwater to hide his amusement.

 

Why is so goddamn hard to resist him? He's gonna make me like him before I even realize it.

 

He lifted his head and dragged a palm over his face to not wipe the water away but the smile on his face. He kept an eye trained on Jinyoung as he made his way into the water at the opposite end. The swimming trunk hung on his thin waist loosely and like all his other clothes, were almost matronly, but strangely turned him on. Instead of looking prudish and dowdy, it accentuated the flare of his hips and roundness of his ass. It made him want to tear the flimsy material away.

 

What began to peeve him was that Jinyoung didn't even look his way, which in a way was good thing because his cock was beginning to fill out again. The red tip was visible even from the surface of the water.

 

“Are you just going to stay there?” he asked smoothly.

 

“I'm fine here,” Jinyoung replied without turning to him.

 

He smirked. “You don't seem fine, 왕자님.”

Chapter Text

“You don't seem fine, 왕자님,” Jaebum said.

 

His deep, smooth voice carried to him over the sound of lapping water and whir of machine probably keeping the pool water warm. The slight rasp in it sent a shiver up his spine and a tiny gasp to fall from his lips.

 

왕자님. It was a name he'd only ever heard his mom call him.

 

Bastard.

 

It was all he could think as he coward closer to the edge of the pool as he wondered what the hell had possessed him to get in in the first place.

 

I should've just gotten in the shower or the Jacuzzi. Why the hell did I have to come here?

 

You needed to cool down, the tiny voice in his head reminded him.

 

It was true. The pool had been too alluring to ignore, so he had gotten back out of bed, threw on a pair of swimming trunk and came back downstairs. What had been the sweetest lure then became a trap of his own making. The sight of Jaebum with his eyes close, head thrown back and hand curled around himself had made all his common sense up and leave. He should've turned, walked away and instead he had stood there stock still until the man erupted in his own hand.

 

He looked down at the water and realized he had walked right into the same water Jaebum's cum was now floating in. A crazy urge to sink into the water and drink as much as he could filled him and he had to shake himself in order to shake the thought.

 

Are you crazy?

 

He must be. That would be the only explanation as to why he was in the pool. The water felt too hot. He didn't feel like he was on one side of the pool from Jaebum.

 

Suddenly, he couldn't breathe. He felt himself closing in on himself.

 

I need to leave. I need to get out of here.

 

An image of Jaebum on the other end filled him mind and it took everything in him not to turn to the man. He could just feel the man looking at him with the same molten desire in his eyes as he had had during dinner. He felt like a prey too scared to even breathe as its predator crouched low to pounce on him.

 

He could see in his mind’s eye the muscles of Jaebum's chest twitching beneath his skin. The tattoos on his chest leaping with tension. He wanted to trace them with his tongue.

 

Then there was matter of the his cock. He’d never seen anything like it before. It wasn't great in length, but what it lack in length, it more than made up for in width. Even from where he had stood by the pool, he had been able to see that it was thicker than his wrist. It was a beast. He could already see Mark would freaking out over how big it was.

 

He shook his head, shaking the image of the man’s cock out of it. Try as he might though, the image of Jaebum fisting himself was ingrained. The growl had only made the memory more delicious. The sound was by far the most sexiest sound he'd ever heard in his life. There was no point in hiding the twitch of his awakening cock.

 

He closed his eyes and shook his head again. When the last of the images skittered away,  it only gave way to a great discomfort. He felt trapped in his little corner, unable to move freely and swim, so he decided to leave?

He silently cursed himself as he prepared to leave with his head downcast.

 

He was just about to turn and move towards the stairs when he heard movement behind him. This is it, he thought as he froze in place. The predator finally leapt out at its prey.

 

Even though he had anticipated it as Jaebum, it still didn't stop the gasp of shock from escaping him when the man emerged from under the water in front of him. He had to swallow back the scream stuck in his throat as the man came within breathing distance of him. “M-Mr…,” he stuttered struggling to remember the man's name.

 

“Call me Jaebum,” he suggested softly, looking at his mouth with dark desire.

 

The air quickly became too thick to breathe in and his legs were the first to give out on him. He felt himself sinking before Jaebum quickly wrapped an arm around his waist with smirk, or maybe the man pulled him in his arms. He wasn't sure. In that moment, nothing made a whole lot of sense. All he knew was that he was holding onto Jaebum's bicep like a raft in a torrent storm.

 

“You said you wouldn't touch me, Mr. Im,” he said, as stared unseeingly at nothing in particular over the man's left shoulder.

 

“Jaebum…” he pressed instead, softly into his ear.

 

He could feel the rise and fall of the man's bare chest against his. The heat of it fanned across his neck. He gulped audibly before he spoke again. “You said you wouldn't touch me… Jaebum- ssi.

 

The man repeated himself, tightening his grip just a scintillion as if to prove he held the upper hand.

 

“You said you wouldn't touch me, Jaebum.”

 

“I said I wouldn't touch you… unless you wanted me to.”

 

“I didn't say I wanted you to,” he heard himself say weakly. His waist tingles beneath Jaebum's strong hand and it was doing all kinds of crazy dances in his groin.

 

Liar! his mind screamed at him.

 

“Didn't you?” Jaebum murmured, leaning to brush his nose against his neck.

 

His breath caught in his throat and a shiver ran up his spine as he turned his head to look Jaebum in the eyes. He shook his head, biting his lip.

 

“I didn't want to hire you,” the man muttered as if to remind himself.

 

He swallowed. “Maybe you shouldn't have.”

 

“Why?”

 

He turned away.

 

Jaebum grasped his chin with his right hand and forced him to look in his eyes again. “Why not?” he repeated.

 

He couldn't think as he looked into Jaebum's eyes, but he didn't think the man needed an answer… and he was proved correct when Jaebum leaned in again. He stopped barely an inch away from his jaw, but it was more than enough for him to grow weaker and toss his head back to give the man more space to drink him in. His eyes drifted shut as Jaebum's hot breath fanned across his jawline to his chin and back down.

 

“Because you want me too?” Jaebum said into his ear, pulling him closer until the were chest to chest in the water.

 

He barely heard the question over the drumming in his ears and the thundering of his heart. Oh, God, seemed to be the only phrase he knew. If Jaebum continued his ministrations, he knew he would shudder to a violent orgasm. One that would leave him without a shred of dignity left.

 

He shook his head away, willing to cloud of lust away. With what seemed like the last ounce of his strength, he pressed his palms against the man's chest and pushed with all his might.

 

Jaebum didn't even fight against it. The man let him go to stumble backwards in the water. “Why are you denying what’s between us? You walked into the dining room and my dick instantly became hard, and you! You were blushing the entire time. You feel it too. What’s holding you back?”

 

Anger hot and fiery flared in him… but not at Jaebum, who saw right through him and blatantly pointed it out. More at himself for failing to conceal his carnal desire for the man. He was a professional, damn it! He frowned deeply. “You’re wrong about me!”

 

Jaebum didn’t say a word. Instead, he took a step towards him as if to challenge him.

 

Too afraid to look in the man’s eyes and risk losing himself in them again, he shut his tightly. The act on seem to amplify the sound of his own heart pounding in chest wildly that for a moment he wondered if Jaebum could hear it. He felt more than saw Jaebum traced a line from his shoulder to his neck with his lips, and he wasn’t prepared for the raw desire that slammed into him. A darkness swallowed him like the black hole he had so desperately wished for to come earlier. He had known the man was dangerous from the moment they met. Sensed it, even. He had warned himself, but now he was just too worn out. He wanted Jaebum. He wanted the man to ravish him - ruin him for all others, but he made one last feeble, desperate attempt at escape.

 

He turned away and tried to make a run for the stairs, but the water soaking his swimming trunks felt too heavy, and Jaebum succeed in stopping him by extending his arm out to corral him in. He watched the arm flex and twitch beneath the skin mesmerized. He gave up the fight then and turned to Jaebum with the fire in his heart.

 

“If you want to fuck me so badly, then do it and get it over with!”

 

Jaebum's brows shot up to his hairline and the hint of a lazy smile tugged at the corners of his lips.

 

He realized then that Jaebum was taunting him. It was just game. He was indeed the beautiful, tiny rabbit prey and Jaebum was a wolf, backing him into a corner only to gobble him up. It both excited and scared the shit out of him.

 

The thought angered him. It threw him into a blind rage. He forgot what he was there for. He forgot the man could fire him. He didn't care. The man was mocking him and he wanted to smack the growing smirk off his beautiful face. He reached down into the water as the man backed him more into the corner and wrapped his palm around his thick, pulsating cock. The gasp of surprise that fell from Jaebum’s lip made him smile in satisfaction and a bit of confidence.

 

The man fell against him only to brace himself against the edge of the pool with both arms on either side of him - caging him in. I watched the man fall apart in front of him while seething with anger.

 

After a moment, Jaebum looked up at him with a lazy smile. “You coming for blood?”

 

He frowned. With his other hand, he pulled his swimming trunks down until his hard cock sprang free from its confines. He pulled the man closer until their cocks lined up. Despite the rippling of the water around them, he could feel the heat of Jaebum. The velvet softness of his hard cock sliding between his palm and cock was both heaven and hell.

 

He moaned, closing his eyes as he threw his head back at the sensation.

 

He felt Jaebum bury his face in the hollow of his throat, nipping bruising kisses on his skin. As the man neared his pulse, his tongue darted out, teasing at it before he moved upward, claiming his lips in a brutal kiss. His wicked tongue slid along his in a sensuous dance as he slid deeper and deeper into the darkness.

 

He lost himself then, kicking his trunks off the rest of the way down his legs. He wanted Jaebum inside him. He forgot the man was his boss. He forgot his job. He forgot why he was there in the first place. All that mattered was Jaebum and his cock.

 

“Do you need help?” Jaebum teased against his lips, when he saw that he was struggling in the tight space of his arms and the wall.

 

He growled. Finally, he got the flimsy material off and wrapped his arms around Jaebum’s neck before jumping up, wrapping his legs around the man’s waist. Jaebum didn’t disappoint, wrapping his arms around his waist to catch him. He didn’t wait to settle against the man. He ground his hips down and gasp when the tip of Jaebum’s cock caught on his rim before sliding up the cleft of his ass. He leaned down and kissed him hard, sucking on his tongue like a leech. He wanted to cause the man some pain, so he bit down hard on Jaebum’s lip until he tasted blood. He smiled when the man jerked against him.

 

Jaebum pulled away to look at him with his signature lazy smile as he licked the remaining blood away. “So you want to play rough?” he growled.

 

He barely had a millisecond before the man slid his palm from around his waist to cup his ass. His other hand slid around to his cock to tighten around the base. He felt the coil of tension in the pit of his stomach ebb and he whined. Hot tears sprang to his eyes and he was about to protest when Jaebum crushed his mouth with his lips. When his orgasm was properly staved, Jaebum removed his hand and placed it on his other ass cheek. The man squeezed his ass together and then he felt it.

 

The first brutal thrust slide between his ass cheeks, teasing at the sensitive skin of his puckered hole. It was like being touched by lightning. He rocked back, begging for more. He decided he wanted a ferocious fucking from the man then. He wanted rough. He wanted to be ruined.

 

Jaebum took the que and leaned down to suckle on his hard nipple. One after the other, Jaebum nipped, bit, sucked and lapped at the sensitive muscle as he writhed his hips desperately. He was so lost in the torrent of sensations he didn’t even feel Jaebum moving them until he felt the cold tile on his back.

 

Without warning, Jaebum pried his legs apart and stared at his cock. “Fuck, Jinyoung,” he rasped. He leaned in and latched on to his rim.

 

He shook violently, unable to stop his hips from lifting off the floor. “Fuck,” he cried out when Jaebum pushed him back down.

 

The man ate him like he was starving while stroking his cock. Soon, he didn’t even know what he wanted more - for Jaebum to suck him, stroke him, or fuck him. Whether it was being merciful or not, Jaebum began pushed a single digit into his as he moved to suck his cock. The relief it brought had him groaning and throwing his head back in frustration. He wanted more. He needed more.

 

“Jaebum,” he called just as a distant ringing began.

 

“Fuck,” Jaebum cursed, pulling away.

 

He grasp the man by the hair. “Don't you dare,” he hissed, but the man pulled free.

 

There was the beginning of an amused curl of a smile on his lips as he stood. “I need to get that call, my sweet prince. It's urgent. Keep those legs open. I'll finish you off the moment I'm done.”

 

Fuck you, he wanted to spit out at the man, but his sense had already began to come through the haze of desire. Jaebum's clear authority began to shine through and regret began to seep in at what had just happened.

 

Jaebum gave one last lingering caress to his cock and a crushing kiss before he walked away, watering slicing off his rippling muscles as he ambled over to a chair with his belongings on them. He picked up the phone.

 

He watched Jaebum with the taste of himself on his own tongue. The anger in him flared as desire ebbed away, and he wanted to shout curses at the man, but the more sane part of himself held him back.

 

The more insane part though, watched his firm ass flex as he shifted from one foot to the other. He couldn't wait any longer. He needed to feel Jaebum - touch him, taste him. That need got him swimming across the pool towards Jaebum.

 

He was halfway across when Jaebum's voice dropped an octave too deep and his words came out in an angry snarl. “What?” His tone was low and menacing, causing a fear to crawl up his spine. “Did he lose his fucking mind? I'll be there in twenty minutes. If any of you move even a fucking inch before I arrive, you're dead.”

 

The threat was made effective enough that even he froze in place. He watched in silence as Jaebum walked out without so much as a second glance at him - naked, proud and wildly beautiful. It was almost as though he ceased to exist in Jaebum's mind.

 

Suddenly, he felt cold and painfully exposed. He covered himself with his hands but it didn't do anything to cover up the shame he felt or the potential embarrassment he would no doubt encounter walking through the house in his current state. Tears sprang to his eyes.

 

A few moments passed before Mrs. Lu walked in, calling his name. He swam to the corner nearest to her and hugged the edge to cover himself from her eyes as he bowed his head in shame.

 

For the first time, the woman smiled at him warmly  “Mr. Im asked me to bring this to you.”

 

“Thank you,” he murmured as she placed it on the chair Jaebum's stuff had previously been on.

 

She left him then and he let the tears slid down.

Chapter Text

“He did what?” Mark hissed into the phone.

 

“It’s not a big deal,” he muttered in reply, even though he knew he would've had the same reaction had it been Mark. It was a weak defense, but an unexpected protectiveness rose in him. But Jaebum was different - they had this weird fire bursting with flames like a furnace.

 

“The hell it isn't,” Mark seethed as his anger only rose higher. “He left you naked and crying in his damn pool… the cruel bastard.”

 

“I was pissed too, but Mark, the truth is I came unto him. I was the aggressor as much as he was. I stayed and got into the pool, even after catching him jack off. If I'm really being honest, I want him. Anyways, he does owe me anything. We're not dating, or anything like that…”

 

“You need to do the same exact thing to him… just worst,” he said.

 

He sighed. “That’s the best solution you could come up with?” he asked dryly.

 

“There's no other way though,” Mark replied, “Fuck him halfway to somewhere, then leave him high and dry… before he comes, of course. Let him see what it feels like.”

 

“Okay… First of all, are you angry because he didn't finish me off or because he left me?”

 

“Both,” Mark shrilled.

 

“Okay,” he said, smirking his amusement. “Well, I'm in this weird place right now. I’m not ashamed of what we did. Like I said, I want him. It's like I can't control my own body when he's near.”

 

“So he's allowed to treat you like shit?”

 

“Mark, the man had an emergency. Who knows what the phone call was about? It did seem like a life or death situation for him. I mean, his whole face changed. He became a completely different person, just like that,” he said snapping his fingers.

 

“Get out,” Mark said ominously. “You don't need that job. You can find something else. I'll cover your rent for this month.”

 

“No,” he said hastily. “Absolutely not, Mark.”

 

“What? Why?”

 

“Two reasons. One, for Youngjae. It's not his fault I can't keep my hands off his dad. I made a promise to myself that I would help him, and I'm going to fulfill that promise because he needs the help Mark. I have a feel I could of help to him. Whatever is going on with him, I'm getting to bottom of it. The second is because I want him too, Mark. Really bad. I've never wanted anyone like I want Jaebum and before you say anything, I'm going in with my eyes open. I know he's an asshole, but that's okay. It's better actually because I don't want to marry him or get serious. I just want a complete sexual relationship with him. When it's over, I'll dust myself off and be on my way.”

 

“Wow,” Mark said. There was a long silence in the line before Mark spoke again. “Do you actually believe what you're saying?”

 

“Yes, I do. Why shouldn't I have a fling with him? He’s single, rich and emotionally unavailable. He's by all intents and purposes perfect for a torrid affair. Trust me, it'll only cause me more grief to say no to him. Anyways, people do this all the time. Why can't I?”

 

“Cause you're not most people, Jinyoungie,” Mark said with a heavy sigh. “You don't form emotional attachments easily, but when you do, it's usually strong enough to mess you up really badly.”

 

“I'm not gonna form an emotional…”

 

“You don't know that,” Mark said, cutting him off.

 

“Mark, you can't protect me forever. Even if I do end up getting hurt, I'll also be taking something away from it and that's what I need to learn to grow. If I don't do this, I'll only regret it. Does that make sense?”

 

Mark didn't say anything.

 

“Look, I gotta go get ready. The boys have a big day ahead of them.”

 

“Okay, okay. It does make sense, and I get the message. Go. Have fun.”

 

They talked shop for a bit then with Mark filling him in on the weekly meetings they had at the agency. Right before they disconnected, he brought up the real reason he was still on edge. “Mark, I still don't know what he does for a living.”

 

“Isn't he in the real estate business? What does it matter anyways? You just want his dipstick.”

 

He chuckled dryly, not really finding full mirth. “He's filthy rich, but he said something weird on the phone that bothers me.”

 

“What?”

 

“Something like ‘if you leave before I get there, you're dead,’ or something along those lines. It didn't sound like a figure of speech. It sounded more deadly, like a threat. I believe he truly meant it.”

 

Mark fell silent again and he could just imagine the elder frowning.

 

“There’s also security all over the mansion - not obvious, but I know they're there. The cameras… They're everywhere.”

 

“Well, he is rich. Rich people have a whole other level of security…”

 

“Even though.”

 

He sighed. “Just in case this call is being monitored, remember what you read in the tabloids?”

 

“Yeah, I remember… and so does he, so I think they might've been onto something.”

 

“Okay, now I'm even more serious about you leaving.”

 

“It's alright. I won't be here long anyways. I'll have my fling and be on my way out the door.”

 

Mark chuckled. “Oh God, Jinyoung. You sound so cruel.”

 

“Well, so did he.”

 

“Atta boy! Now you guard your heart well, Jinyoungie. I don't want you coming to me crying because then I'll have to go there and chop him to pieces.”

 

He had to smile at Mark's protectiveness. “I won't. I promise.”

 

“Oh, before you hang up, you have to tell me.”

 

“Tell you what?”

 

“How big was he?” Mark asked coyly.

 

Heat ran up to his face faster than the speed of light. “It'll ummm… it'll be a few tries before he can slide fully in.”

 

“Cheese and fucking crackers,” Mark squealed. “No wonder you can't wait to bang him.”

 

“I'm hanging up,” he sang.

 

“Have fun! Don't everything I wouldn't do!” Mark practically screamed over the line.

 

He rolled his eyes, taking his phone away from his ear. “Idiot,” he muttered.

 

Chapter Text

Twenty later, he came to a stop in the center of Yugyeom's closet as the toddler tore it apart search for a pair of shoes he apparently wasn't going to wear.  “I can't find it,” he exclaimed in exasperation as he slumped to the floor in defeat.

 

“Find what, sweetie?”

 

“Bambam's shoes,” he whined. “I was supposed to give them back today. They're his favorite.”

 

“Okay. Where did you see them last?’ he asked as he stood and eyed the mess of shoes on the floor.

 

“I put them under my bedside table, so no one will find them.”

 

He bit back to smile he felt tugging at his lips. The child was just too damn adorable. “Did you look there?”

 

Yugyeom rolled his eyes and it was  effective enough to wipe any amusement away. “It was the first place I looked.”

 

“Okay,” he said, “What do they look like?”

 

“They're black and shiny and have a zipper on the side.”

 

Black dress shoes, he decided. “Alright, so let's do this: let’s put up all the shoes that aren’t black,” he began as Youngjae walked into the closet. “Youngjae, would you like to help your brother find Bambam’s shoes?”

 

Youngjae rolled his eyes and walked back out.

 

He arched his brow before he shrugged and turned back to Yugyeom. It was obvious Youngjae was being a typical elder brother, annoyed by younger sibling. He would deal with it later. He crouched down low until he almost eye-level with the toddler. “Did that sound like a plan?”

 

Yugyeom pouted slightly, still tearfilled eyes. “It’s hopeless, Hyung. I can't find it. Bambam won’t be my friend anymore.”

 

“I doubt it's that serious, honey, but we'll find them, okay?” When the boy nodded back wiping at his eyes with the back of his hands, he turned back to the pile of shoes and began to pick up the ones that weren't black.

 

Ten minutes later, they were just about at the last ten pairs of shoes. “See,” the toddler screeched, “The shoes isn't here, Hyung. Bambam will be very mad at me.”

 

He was sighing in defeat when Youngjae walked back in with a box in his hand. He stomped over to his brother and crouched low, thrusting the box at Yugyeom. Curiously, Yugyeom took the box and lifted the lid. His eyes, sparkling wet with tears lit up like a Christmas tree before he lunged at his brother. “Thank you, Hyung!”

 

Inside the box was a pair dark, navy blue suede shoes that were slightly elevated by an inch heel. It was much too stylish for a boy he pictured to be Yugyeom's age, but something you would find at a local thrift store around the corner. It was obvious it didn't belong in the mountain they had just sorted through.

 

Aside from that, it didn't go unnoticed that Youngjae was able to find the exact pair his younger brother was searching for. He watched as Youngjae smiled gently at his brother and pulled him close in a comforting, yet protective embrace. It both touched and concerned him in a way that was hard to explain even to himself.

 

When Yugyeom finally composed himself, Youngjae helped him off the floor and left him still watching them from where he was sitting. He frowned, watched them leave before he began to put away the rest of the shoes still strewn around the room. By the time he made his way into the servant dining room, Youngjae was piling pancakes on Yugyeom’s plate. He sat across from them and watched closely as Youngjae cut the pancakes into small pieces and take a bite before pushing it towards Yugyeom. The two boys looked at each other for a second before Yugyeom lifted his fork and dug into his breakfast.

 

He looked up to find Mrs. Lu looking at him. “他們經常這樣做嗎?” he asked.

 

“是,” she answered. “每頓飯.”

 

“Every meal?” he repeated in English more to himself, stunned. It was odd. A child of seven should never feeling like he needed to taste his younger brother’s food as if it were poisoned before giving it to him. His eyes fell on Youngjae and there was a wisdom in his eyes that rocked him. It was then he knew without a doubt that Youngjae knew exactly what he was asking Mrs. Lu.

 

“Youngjae, do you understand Chinese?” he asked.

 

The boy nodded at him and he flushed in shame. To cover up his embarrassment at being caught, he cleared his throat and continued with a small smile. “How well do you understand Mandarin?”

 

Youngjae looked up briefly from his meal as though to gauge his interest. He took his notepad and wrote on it. ‘Very well. I understand Cantonese too,’ he wrote.

 

He nodded. “Could you say something to me in Cantonese then?” he urged.

 

The boy saw right through him, rolling his eyes in response. He took a sip from his glass of freshly squeezed orange juice before he wrote in his notepad again. ‘Why? Do you understand?’

 

For a seven year old, he had an amazing bank of vocabulary and admirable intelligence. The advantage of private tutoring and one-on-one studying, he thought. Instead, he smiled at the boy. “I won’t understand, but I would love to hear what it sounds like when you say them.”

 

Before he could respond, Jaebum walked in. Their eyes immediately met and his spine stiffened. He looked down at the glob of porridge in his bowl, finding great interest in the way the pieces of chicken fought to float its way to the top. He took a seat at the head of the table, right beside him and he wanted to smack himself for not anticipating it. From this short distance, he could smell the man’s aftershave and earthy cologne. It was intoxicating and addictive. He wanted to slither his way into Jaebum’s lap and bury his face in the man’s neck.

 

Jaebum’s simple meal of toast and a couple of fruits was brought to him, but he ignored it taking a sip of his coffee. Over the rim of his cup though, their eyes met again and he quickly looked away. He mentally kicked himself. HE had no reason to look away. It was Jaebum who should be ashamed. He looked back at the man. “Good morning, Mr. Im.”

 

“Jaebum,” he corrected automatically. His gaze was on him for only a moment before it went over to Youngjae and Yugyeom.

 

The callous treatment zapped him with anger.

 

“Youngjae-ah, Yugyeom-ah, how are you both doing this morning? Good?” he asked the children gently.

 

Yugyeom unabashedly grinned at his father through the syrup coating his lips. Youngjae, on the other hand, became still as a statue. He didn't even look up at his father as he nodded his head and returned to his meal. The withdrawal irked him, making him wonder about it. Instead of being bubbly and excited at seeing his father, the boy was the complete opposite. In fact, he looked like he was on the verge of tears.

 

The complete change in his demeanor made him turn to study Jaebum closely as he talked animatedly with his youngest child. Instead, he was struck again with how annoyingly handsome the man was. This morning, his hair was brushed back from his face, giving a full view of his beautiful moles. He wanted to kiss them as he buried his hands on the man’s hair. The reminder made him think about the way he had done so the evening before and shot of arousal jolted him.

 

Youngjae looked up at him curiously.

 

He smiled a bit too brightly as he turned back to meal, but as he shoved a spoon of porridge into his mouth it tasted like lead, his mind too full of Jaebum to swallow without struggling to do so. The spoon in his hand felt lighter than Jaebum’s thick length. His lips felt abandoned in comparison to the tingling it was introduced to. The knot in his stomach felt too loosened for his liking… until he remembered how Jaebum had abandoned him standing stark naked in the middle of the pool.

 

He had told Mark that it was alright and that it didn’t hurt him, but a part of him did. A malicious feeling overcame him and he wanted to hurt the man just as badly - if not, worse. Like, right now… as he sat beside him dressed in a black suit jacket with a crisp white, collarless button up shirt. He wanted to rip it to shreds and have the man growling his name. He wanted to wrap the man in his fingers. The feeling was irrational, but powerful.

 

“Jinyoung…” the man called to him, pulling him from his thoughts.

 

He looked up at him. For a moment, Jaebum didn’t say a word, his gaze studying the silent fury he knew were in his eyes.

 

He felt as though the man understood. As if he could sense exactly what he was feeling.

 

“What are you doing this evening at four?”

 

His heart jumped. “Youngjae has his math tutor then. Yugyeom-...”

 

“Can be cared for by the staff,” he finished. “Good. I’ll send a car to pick you up.”

 

No warning whatsoever. The man decided for him already, but he wasn’t above questioning the man. “Why?”

 

Jaebum lifted his brows at his defiance.

 

After what had occurred the night before, he no longer deserved courtesy. He no longer cared if he got fired.

 

Jaebum looked away, directing his gaze at Youngjae. “Youngjae-ah, would you please excuse Jinyoung and I for a moment? It's almost time for your lessons anyways. Yugyeom-ah, ask Tzuyu to bring another cup of coffee for me. Bambam was waiting in the playroom for you when I passed when you're done in the kitchen.”

 

He watched as Yugyeom hopped off his chair and scrambled for the door. Youngjae hesitated for a minute, looking at him in concern before he too slide out of his seat and exited the room.

 

The fear in the boy's eyes concerned him so he turned back to Jaebum. “Why is Youngjae scared of you?”

 

The man simply shrugged. “It's the usual reaction people have to me. You though… you're particularly hostile.”

 

He lifted his glass and took a long sip.

 

“Is it because of last night?” Jaebum asked.

 

No preamble. No lead up. The man shot straight to the point. He put his glass down. “Last night? What about it?”

 

Jaebum dropped his fork to his plate. The clatter of silver again ceramic created a deafening din in room, but he didn't flinch. The servants on the other hand, bustled from the room as if Jaebum was a ticking time bomb and they were running for safety. Instead of reaching to strangle him, the man leaned back in his chair.

 

Instead of fanning the flames of anger in him, the movement only inflamed the desire he felt for the man.

 

“I had an emergency,” Jaebum stated with a sigh. “Do you think I wanted to leave?”

 

He looked down at his plate, suddenly embarrassed that he was close to tears.

 

“I'm sorry,” the man murmured.

 

“There's no need to apologize,” he said quickly, forcing the tears back. “Why do you need me at four?”

 

The man never moved his gaze away from his face. “I'm gonna put a gun in your hands.”

 

His brain came to a jerking halt. “I'm sorry - what?”

 

“You need to learn how to use a gun. In case you ever encounter a problem while the boys are with you.”

 

He looked away from the man, trying to process what he'd just been told.

 

Encounter a problem? What kind of problem could I possibly encounter that would require me to use a firearm in order to protect the boys? We're escorted by security teams even in the house.

 

“Remember what we read in the tabloids?” Mark's voice echoed in his mind.

 

What the fuck have I gotten myself into?

 

“Scared?” Jaebum taunted.

 

He turned his gaze back to the man. “No, but I’d like to know what kind of danger we might encounter and why it requires me - a nanny - training in handling a firearm.”

 

“It's just a precaution. I take the safety of my sons seriously,” he said, sliding his chair back and standing.

 

“Using a gun is more than serious. I won't use a gun.”

 

“Consider it an occupational hazard. You're the one who wanted the job,” the man reminded. “You can quit at any time.”

 

Jaebum started to walk away and he tried to stop himself, but the words came out before he could stop them. “What about us?”

 

The man didn't stop. He simply closed the door and locked it before turning back to him. There was a savage gleam in his eyes that both scared and excited him. “What do you mean?” he asked, the corners of his lips curling up in a ruthless smile.

 

His brain shut off. He rose to his feet and walked towards the man until they came face to face, their chest nearly touching. “You don't want to finish the job you started last night?” he asked.

 

A spark of approval flashed in the man eyes. “Oh, I want to.”

 

“When?” he asked boldly.

 

Every trace of amusement left Jaebum's face then. The mask of public approachability disappeared and was replaced but what he expected lurked beneath - an infinitely dark and hungry wolf. “Tonight,” he said, “after your training. Are you sure you can handle it?”

 

“Handle what? The training, or you?” he retorted.

 

“Oh, I know you'll be able to handle a gun.”

 

His response escaped him again before he could stop it. “Well, I got a good enough taste of it last night. It shouldn't be a problem for me.”

 

Jaebum's chuckle was dry and low, seeming to reverberate from deep within his chest. “Good,” he whispered softly before turning to unlock the door and leave.

 

He knew he was playing with fire, but he couldn't stop. Something about the man made him want to challenge him, provoke him. “Can you?” he asked before the man could step across the threshold.

 

Jaebum stopped. “Can I what?” he asked without turning.

 

“Handle me,” he answered, smirking.

 

The reaction he got was instant. One moment he was standing midway between the door and the table and the next, he was laying flat on the table with a loud thud. Cutlery, plates and cups were falling on the floor shattering on contact around him. The front of his shirt was being held secure in Jaebum's fist to hold him down while his hands searched desperately for the edge of the table and his fake confidence.

 

Jaebum's dancing eyes hungrily roamed his face. “Put away your claws, little kitten. I don't think you understand what you're getting yourself into.”

 

Somehow he found the guts to smile. “Make up your mind. Yesterday, I was a prince.”

 

Jaebum went along with his little show, searching his eyes with wonder. “Be ready by four.”

 

He reached between them and grabbed Jaebum by his cock. “I already am. Let's get this over with, so we can move the fuck on.”

 

“Over?” the man chuckled. “Prince Jinyoung, you have no idea.” With that, he released his shirt, tapping on the wooden table twice before straightening up and walking out.

 

The moment Jaebum was gone, he tried to pull himself upright to straighten out his clothes, but his knees buckled under him. He reached out for the table unsteady before he crumpled to the floor. He was still struggling to breathe when he looked at the other entrance to the dining room and caught Youngjae's eyes.

 

He looked absolutely terrified and on the verge of tears again, but it was enough to snap him back to reality. “Youngjae-ah.”

 

For a few seconds the boy stared at him before he burst into tears and ran towards him. He got to his launches in time for the boy to fly into his arms and bury his nose into the crook of his neck. Instead of wounding his tiny arms around his neck like most children did, Youngjae wrapped them around his shoulders in a more protective and comforting gesture. He couldn't understand. “Sweetie, are you alright? What's wrong?” he tried to ask pulling away, but the boy only gripped him tighter.

 

“Don't cry,” he tried to console. “Why are you crying?”

 

Youngjae only gave him an odd sobbing sound.

 

Consoling him seemed to only make him sob more, so he settled them into a more comfortable position and held him close. His sobs were evoking emotions in him he couldn’t understand, and his heart felt weak to them.

 

Then it hit him. Youngjae pitied him. He was afraid Jaebum, his own father, would hurt him. He began to tear up himself.

 

When Youngjae finally composed himself, they stood and Youngjae took his hand leading him out the room. They were about to cross the threshold when he began to resist. “Won't you tell me? Please?” he begged searching the boy's eyes.

 

As expected, Youngjae closed in on himself with a shake of his head, leaving him more confused than ever.

Chapter Text

Park Jinyoung was a distraction of another level.

 

Hell, distraction was a euphemism for what he was doing to Jaebum. He didn't know whether he was coming or going with the man. He couldn't stop thinking about Jinyoung's dark fuck-me eyes or the softness of his skin. Don't even get him started on those legs. Those legs… it had taken everything in him to pull away from his position between Jinyoung’s legs that had been wrapped deliciously around his head. Now he couldn't even focus on what was happening in front of him. He was damn well fantasizing about the man.

 

The five men ramming their boots into the cowering idiot on the floor wasn't enough to distract him. They were close to killing him, and in that moment, he wanted to allow it. Had it been his father charge, they wouldn't have needed to wait for a command. They would've killed him a while ago, filleted and proudly presented the man's heart to him on a silver platter.

 

He wasn't into wet work though. He didn't enjoy it - hell he could barely keep the cringe to himself. It was the best way to end up behind bars.

 

I'm no a sociopath, if anything, psychopath fit better.

 

For the first time in a long time though, wet work was necessary. He heard the crack if a rib and he'd had enough. With a burst of fury, he stood from his chair  letting it crash to the floor carelessly.

 

The men stopped mid-kick and looked at him, but he turned away from them. He looked at his longtime friend, Jackson. “Any news from the hospital?”

 

“He's in a coma. The jump broke his spine,” the blonde explained, tucking his hands in his pocket.

 

He glanced back at the coward in the corner who had sent one of his men to a near-death plunge. He cursed. One step forward, two steps back. It was okay though. The man wasn't the only person with information he needed, it just set his plans back a little. Pabo, he thought turning back to walk over to the man, who had once been loyal to him and now lay huddled in the corner. He crouched low and grasped the man by his bloodied shirt. “You alerted the cops. Now, they'll be watching everything until all this blows over, you fucking dog.”

 

The man let out a few dying grunts and he felt nothing. The man was a traitor. For a second, he pictured his children's faces when he gave them the news of their mother's death. Their mother, his wife, his best friend. His feet itched to give the man a few kicks himself, but he crushed the feeling.

 

He stood and stared blankly at the man as he came to a decision. “Finish him,” he said coldly, walking away.

 

He walked briskly out the container and across the construction yard to the makeshift shooting range he had ordered to be set up that morning in no time at all. Just as he picked up his gun and fired the first shot, he phone rang.

 

“I have the nanny with me, in the car. Should I take him to the office, or…”

 

“I'm in the yard,” he growled, ending the call. He slammed the phone down on the counter, hearing the screen shatter on contact. Instead feeling regretful, it eased a bit of the anger boil in his veins. If he met Jinyoung like this, who was to know what the outcome would be. I can't see him right now.

 

He cursed, picking the pair of earmuffs. I'll win this war. Everyone that betrayed me will taste my wrath. He looked across the range at the target and imagined the one face he knew was behind the entire thing, but couldn't pin. One day, he thought as he supported his outstretched arm and shut one eye. I'll exact my revenge on those who betrayed me. He fired his gun with each word that crossed his mind. One by one. He shot twelve perfect headshots before Jinyoung’s arrival was announced. Some of the anger had faded, but thoughts of the beautiful young man on the other side of the door returned, greatly easing the pain in his heart.

 

His throat tightened in anticipation and there was no denying he needed Jinyoung. He needed to bury himself in the man - feel him tremble at his touch, hear him moan his name, listen to his heart racing as he slammed his entire cock in him. He needed to get rid of the tension riding high in him and the only answer was Jinyoung.

 

Somehow, he knew Jinyoung bent over, taking all of him, would erase the ache and anger. Every. Fucking. Inch. His cock twitched just at the thought of it, and he completely missed the target. He placed his gun down and shook his head. A vain act at getting the blood to move upwards.

 

A quiet knock resonated from the door and he glanced at it briefly before he answered. “Come.”

 

It opened, but it wasn't Jinyoung. Instead, Jackson, his best friend and second in command slide in to the room  only to mean lazily back against the wall. They'd met in middle school when Jackson had saved his ass from a bunch of high schoolers. He had been new to New York then. The blonde had clung to him from the moment he told him about his family.

 

“How did your mom die?” their schoolmates had each asked him.

 

His answer had always been the same. “My dad shot her.”

 

Some had believed him, but fled. Others labeled him as a nut job and moved on. Jackson though had seen something in him and shrugged, digging into his meal with a nonchalant ‘okay.’ Whether Jackson believed him then or not, he had no idea. He didn't care. No matter what happened, Jackson always had his back. The man didn't even need to be. His family was well-off. Years went by and Jackson never left. He always stayed true. Somewhere along the way, he realized no one else could strike that deep note of affinity like he had with Jackson.

 

“What's messing with you?” he asked in Mandarin, arching a brow at the missed shot.

 

He heaved a deep sigh and picked up the gun again, aiming it at the silhouette. This time he shot one through the heart.

 

“Things like this go to shut all the time,” he reasoned. “What's got you so riled up?”

 

“No reason,” he said turning back to the blonde just in time to see his brows shoot up before he covered it quickly. Jackson’s eyes narrowed, studying him.

 

It was times like this that Jackson annoyed the shit out of him. Fuck you and your silent intelligence, he thought biting back the growl boiling to the surface. I need a fucking gorilla who doesn't know me so fucking well.

 

The door opened again, but Jackson never tore his gaze away from him.

 

Jinyoung walked in wearing a tight white shirt and light blue jeans that hugged his slim hips and was perfectly. His dark brown was tousled back to show the snowy white skin of his forehead that only made his eyes darker and his lips appear more red than usual. His eyes drifted lower and caught on to the beginning of a bruise blossoming just at the hollow of Jinyoung’s throat.

 

A jolt of possessiveness shot through him. Fuck, yeah. I did that!

 

Jinyoung stopped short just beyond the door, looking around as if he didn't know what to do next. “Hi,” he said, his melodic voice carrying through the silence. He turned to Jackson with hesitation, possibly unsure of how to greet him.

 

He sort of pitied Jinyoung then. Everyone didn't know how to greet him. The man looked approachable at events. In privacy, his eyes looked as if he could see straight to your soul and know your darkest secrets. His athletic frame didn't help matters. Although he was shorter by a few inches, his body didn't hide his power and speed.

 

Jackson turned to Jinyoung, unsmiling. Awkwardly, Jinyoung avoided his gaze and looked at him. He turned away and picked up his gun again. He needed to skim of the edge. “Pick a gun from the rack,” he ordered before firing off a shot.

 

From the corner of his eye, he caught Jinyoung jump with fright from the deafening bang. He didn't miss the hand that flew to his chest either, and remorse filled him at his stupidity. Why did I do that? Why did turn away? What do I have to hide from Jackson? He'll find out any way.

 

He has never needed anyone like he needed Jinyoung right now. The knowledge both terrified him and annoyed him. Jinyoung was slowly turning him into an addict for his body. He has never felt this craving before. When he wanted, he took and after, he tossed.

 

The fact that Jackson never once broke his gaze away from him only served to annoy him even more. Filtering out the concern from his tone, he looked at Jinyoung and asked, “Are you okay?”

 

“No,” Jinyoung replied. “I don't want to be here.”

 

The terror he felt elevated at the thought of Jinyoung leaving.

 

Maybe I went too far.

 

He has never cared about someone leaving. Not even with Nayeon, and that thought alone scared him shitless.

 

“Leave him alone, Gege,” Jackson warned in Sino-Korean, breaking the silence, “He's the wrong sort.”

 

His words were like a bucket of ice cold water being dumped on him.

 

With that, Jackson gave him one last pointed look before he turned and strode out the room.

Chapter Text

On his way to meet Jaebum, he seen what seemed to be a man beaten literally into a pulp being dragged across the concrete floor. He’d seen the man's face. His eyes were swollen shut and his mouth was hanging open.

 

He had closed his eyes and shivered. A chill so cold crawling up his spine slowly. He was almost positive the man was dead. There was something heavy and unmoving about him that scared him shitless.

 

Shock and terror had him putting one foot in front of the other until he and the man, - Seungjin, Jaebum's driver - came to a door. The driver didn't even bat an eye at the man being dragged away.

 

Oh, God! I just saw a dead man and everyone is treating it like an everyday occurrence, he thought, looking around him. His heart was pounding in his chest a million beats per minute. He was in a construction yard out in the middle of East End and he'd just seen a man being dragged away after being beaten, possibly to death.

 

Seungjin opened the metal door and let him in to a corridor where they walked down. In one room they passed, a group of men were seated smoking with weapons tucked into their clothing, but on full display. They were boisterously speaking in rapid fire Korean that his fried brain could not comprehend even if it was his first language. Whether they were arguing or just overexcited he couldn't tell.

 

All he knew was that some of them that caught sight of him, fell silent and observed him closely as if waiting for him to fall so they could pounce on him.

 

Slowly, Jaebum's words, the disappearing act, and the tight security began to make a little more sense - filling his head with ideas and images that only served to make his blood run cold in his veins. He began to shiver. He'd been all mouth at breakfast, challenging a man that could quite possibly snap his neck in two with his bare hand or even send one of these dudes to handle the job.

 

The gunshot though had been the last straw.

 

Somehow without fully understanding, he knew Jaebum's friend had said something about him. His deep clipped tone reverberated in the room, scattering goosebumps across his skin as it swept past him.

 

Jaebum wasn’t ordinary. He didn't care what the tabloids said about everyone else. The Geondal angle was true, and now that the handsome blonde left him alone with Jaebum, he was beyond terrified.

 

Jaebum turned to him and he asked the only question he could get past his lips, “Why?”

 

“I'm sorry,” the man whispered.

 

He could tell Jaebum was being sincere, but didn't know how to exactly phrase. “For which? The dead guy or gunshot because… fuck! I don't know what scares me more,” he said, his knees finally buckling under him. Maybe it was something people in Jaebum’s world did to people in his world just to see how they would react. He didn't know, but it was a big risk. He could’ve fled. He could've gone to the police. He could've placed Jaebum and the boys in danger.

 

It didn't matter now because from the look in Jaebum's eyes, he could tell the man wouldn't harm him. And just like that, the fear dissipated. It washed out of him in great waves, leaving behind the charge of primal instinct and raw desire in its wake. He wanted to crawl in Jaebum lap and ride the man so hard he would have hold on tight. He wanted Jaebum eyes on him, feel his naked skin slide against his. He wanted Jaebum so much he ached.

 

He shook his head at the odd direction his mind turned to. How can I be thinking about having sex after seeing a dead man? I must be going crazy. This is crazy. Jaebum is crazy. We're all fucking crazy. This is wrong - so very fucking wrong. I need to leave. If I don't leave now, I'm going to definitely become the crazy person that gets turned on from seeing a dead body. I never should've stopped that day. What was I thinking? I need to leave now and not look back.

 

“Jinyoung,” Jaebum called as he stood and turned to walk away.

 

He didn't stop. He didn't even look back. He out one foot in front of the other just like he had done when he saw the man being dragged away. Nothing was stopping him this time.

 

Until the gun went off.

 

What the fuck? he screamed - whether it was internally or out loud, he didn't know. He couldn't tell. His heart had dropped to the pit of his stomach and his knees began to literally tremble in the rampant fear that had seized him earlier.

 

All he knew was his first instincts and those were to shut his eyes right and cover his ears with the palm of his hands as his entire frame shivered in mind-numbing terror. He waited and waited for the pain to hit him and when it never did, he looked down at his stomach, sure there was a hole there. He looked up at the wall and saw the shell embedded in the concrete wall.

 

He turned on Jaebum then. The rage he felt overriding the fear. “Are you fucking insane?” he screeched at the man. He charged at Jaebum, slamming into him, but it did nothing so he shoved at him with all his might. “You bastard! You fucking shot at me,” he screamed, letting the tears spill from his eyes. When the contact did nothing, he attacked the man with both fist, raining blows on his chest, and Jaebum let him.

 

When he was near exhausted, Jaebum grabbed both his hands and pinned them to his side. “Enough! Calm down. I wasn't shooting at you,” he snarled, his sharp gaze on his face, but his expression was stoic and unreadable.

 

He didn't even need a mirror to know that he was a mess, but he didn't care. He glared up at the man. “Let go of me,” he grit out. “I'm calm now.”

 

Immediately Jaebum released him and he landed a stinging slap across the man's face. The sound bounced of the walls just as soundly as the gunshot, and slowly his anger faded and reality seeped in. The realization of what he'd done set in and it shocked him.

 

Jaebum's cheek blossomed a red handprint and his hand instantly flew to his on mouth in shock. “I-I didn't mean to do that. I'm… I... I…,” he tried to apologize, but it was as though words failed him in that moment. He stumbled backwards, every fiber of his being screaming at him that he wouldn't be leaving unscathed.

 

His flight mode kicked in. He turned away to run for the door, but before he could even land a second step, an arm held him firmly in place wrapped around his waist. It lifted him off the floor and his legs shot out in protest, kicking.

 

“Let me go!” he cried, but he was silenced with a bruising kiss. He was being pinned tightly against Jaebum's hard chest, his neck twisted to accommodate the man. He should've bitten it, but like a trained dog, he sucked on it, shamelessly melting into the kiss.

 

Jaebum's kisses were like heaven and hell rolled into one - hot and fiery, but cold and chilling. He wanted them, but a part of him also watched on begging to be free, wishing the man never kissed him in the first place. He began to struggle even harder, even as he returned each kiss with him own. It was like his mind and body were two separate entities.

 

Eventually, he came to the conclusion that all his struggles were in vain and twisted around. His brain gave in and chased the thrill. He allowed Jaebum access to everything. He let the man consume him.

 

It didn't take long for him to be slammed against the wall, getting the breath knocked out of him. When he was allowed to breathe again, it was because Jaebum chose to trail kisses down his jaw to his neck where he nipped, licked and sucked at his tender flesh. “You bastard,” he heard himself say, but followed it after with an apology. He was stuck between wanting to push the man away and holding on to him for dear life. He was sure he was going crazy.

 

Jaebum kissed him again and he lost all coherence.

 

The next thing he registered was Jaebum tearing at the buttons of his jeans. He needed them off like he needed his next breath, so he stood there, panting and watching with growing impatience, so he pulled his shirt off. Jaebum immediately latched on to his nipple and he threw his head back at the assault of ecstasy that shot through him. His hands found Jaebum's hair - neither leading or pulling, just letting the softness ground him.

 

It was a disrespect to his body, but he didn't care - he needed Jaebum. In him, around him - everywhere.

 

With Jaebum’s mouth attached to one nipple, sucking and biting, one hand was on the other, pinching and twisting. With his other hand, Jaebum slipped it past the waistband of his pants and cupped his ass roughly. The tip of his fingers dug into his flesh and his heart stopped as the man's middle finger brushed an inch or so shy of his rim.

 

His breathing came out in halting puffs of air, rattling his entire frame as Jaebum adjusted to slide his fingers between the clefts of his ass cheeks. God, what is happening to me?

 

The man barely touched him and he was shaking. This isn't supposed to be happening. He's a criminal. He’s too dangerous, his mind screamed.

 

He let go, pushing on Jaebum's shoulders. “No!” he cried, pulling on the man's wrist, but he wouldn't budge.

 

“Games, little Prince,” Jaebum growled looking up at him with a smirk, pushing a finger in slowly.

 

It was only then he realized the man's fingers were slippery with what felt like lubricant. He had come prepared. He'd known this would happen. But even though he knew this, he melted into the sensation of being penetrated.

 

Jaebum's finger became two, then three without him even noticing. Expertly, they massaged him, relaxed him, coaxing him into seeking them with a writhe of his hips. There was no pain, just a euphoric feeling that left him wanting more - needing more. They were rapid and fluid moving in and out of him as he met them as if in a crazed trance.

 

Time passed or stopped, he didn't know. All he knew was sensation and the waves of pleasure crashing into him, caused by Jaebum’s fingers.

 

“This is mine, Jinyoung,” Jaebum growled into his ear. “Mine.”

 

And that did him in.

 

He came hard, ropes of cum jetting forth into his boxers. It was sticky and messy, and very embarrassing. He felt like a teenager as he sagged against Jaebum, shaking and clutching at the man's jacket tightly. All the man had used was his fingers and he'd lost his mind in a shattering, life-changing climax.

 

He pulled away and looked at Jaebum, staring into his eyes. How stupid of me to tell Mark I could fuck him and be on my merry little way when this is all over. This'll never be over. Not for me, at least. What guy could live up to that? I'm ruined. I'll never be able to survive without him.

 

“We need to stop,” he whispered croakily, his voice too scratched out from screaming.

 

“Why are always ready to run from me? Why do keep running away?” he asked. “I'm not even done with you.”

 

He couldn't respond. Words failed him yet again. He tried to push Jaebum away.

 

“No,” Jaebum growled. “Not before I've had you.” Grabbing both the waistband of his boxers and jeans, the man tugged them down his legs then lifted him.

 

Their lips met again and he felt like he was drowning - drowning in passion, in desire, in need - in Jaebum. His scent, his fevered touches, his dark eyes, his intoxicating kisses. It was overwhelming and terrifying, but he wouldn't have it any other way. He was nothing but a mindless wimp against the wall. His only focus was trying to fight the mind-shattering climax that was inevitably going to overtake him.

 

He gave up the fight.

 

With a groan, Jaebum dropped his head on his shoulder, sucking a bruise there. It did nothing to distract him from the sensation of Jaebum's cock at his rim. He didn't even know how it was out already. He was too distracted by fighting against the entire force that was Jaebum.

 

Without thinking, he spread his thighs just a little wider, dropping a little lower in Jaebum's lap. The wet tip of Jaebum cock caught on his rim and he whimpered. There was no mistaking the hiss Jaebum released either, and a slight triumph slashed through him.

 

Jaebum lifted hi head and looked into his eyes. It took him a few shakes of his head and Jaebum's coaxing voice before he was able to focus on what the man was saying. “What?”

 

“Stay with me, Jinyoung-ah,” Jaebum rasped out.

 

“I'm here,” he whimpered, slumping a little lower trying to find some relief. He was hard and leaking, already a sticky mess, and it was taking everything in him not to cum before Jaebum even fucked him.

 

“Say it's mine, Jinyoung.”

 

He shook his head stubbornly, his last weak attempt at fighting off Jaebum.

 

“Say it's mine - damn it!” Jaebum growled, stroking the tip of his cock against his rim.

 

“Fuck you! If you want it so fucking much, then take it! It's yours...!” It’s always been yours, he wanted to add, but Jaebum chose that moment to plunge into him.

 

Holy fuck! he gasped. He was barely aware of the groan that escaped Jaebum. His eyes were screwed shut. He was being consumed. A fiery, livid lust he'd never known existed, completely possessed him.

 

Jaebum didn't give him any time to adjust. The man went full-on caveman mode, fucking him so hard his feet left the floor. Not that he was complaining. Quite the opposite. There was pleasure in the pain he was experiencing from oversensitivity and the ramming of Jaebum's cock into him and tug of his tip at his rim. In and out, and with each thrust like in punch in the gut, leaving him breathless and dizzy.

 

In that, there was also pain in the pleasure. He'd never felt so full in his life. His body was wound up tight from trying to fend off the orgasm he felt was ready to snap at any moment.

 

Jaebum was stuffing him full of cock and all he could do was hold on for the ride. He couldn't match Jaebum's hunger or virility, or even his thrusting for that matter, so he just held on as tears rolled down his cheek.

 

“Fuck!” Jaebum growled as he wildly pulled at the man's auburn locks, needing to vent against his delicious assault.

 

To his shock, he came… hard. This time, it was like an explosion. His entire being convulsed in Jaebum's arms, his ass bearing down on the man's thick cock. The first time, it had been easy to remain almost soundless. This time with the tiny fragments of his brain still remaining, he knew he would have trouble speaking, or even walking, for a few days. (LOL 😂😂 OMFGAHKSKAGKD WHAT AM I DOING TO JINYOUNG ???? PRAY FOR MY SOUL !!! I CAN'T STOP LAUGHING IM FUCKING WHEEZING) He felt bruised and violated all over, in the most delicious way.

 

Whatever he had done, tipped Jaebum over the edge. The man groaned savagely and he felt warm cum splash against his walls.

 

He needed to ground himself and fast before he lost himself in the tidal waves that rocked him. His lips searched for Jaebum's beyond the white light that covered his vision and when he found it, he instinctively held on, afraid the moment would never come again.

 

Jaebum allowed it as he slid out and he was deposited back on his feet as they kissed passionately. He didn't know how he was standing - his legs felt weak - but he didn't care. Jaebum's tongue was doing wonders, delving and massaging his. He felt cum all over him - sliding down his leg, on his abdomen, in him. He felt… owned. It was the most erotic thing.

 

Until reality set in again.

 

Oh, God. I let him cum inside me.

 

He panicked and held on tighter, kissing Jaebum deeper. He was afraid. He wanted to pretend it was all okay. He wanted to stay in this room with Jaebum forever.

 

But it was Jaebum who pulled away, and he was too afraid to even open his eyes when the cold set in.

 

The silence grew into awkwardness and it became too painful to bear, so opened his eyes and without looking at Jaebum, he began to dress quietly. The walk of shame started now.

 

He better not apologize, or say it was a mistake, or that it'll never happen again, I'm going to kill him in his sleep.

 

But Jaebum didn't say that. Instead, the man stood there. “I didn't take precaution,” he whispered, more to himself.

 

He stiffened, his gaze flying to Jaebum's eyes.

 

The man looked stunned. Like he'd never done that before. “I had a condom in my pocket, but I never thought to use it.”

 

“It's okay. I'm clean,” he said quickly, pulling on his pants. “Are you?” He nearly stumbled.

 

He saw Jaebum reach out for him and he flinched away from his touch, too afraid of what it would lead to again. He saw the flash of anger in Jaebum's eyes.

 

All he wanted was to help him.

 

“I'm fine,” he said briskly, placing his focus back on pulling on his shirt quickly. He listened to Jaebum arrange himself as well, but he couldn't meet his eyes again.

 

He didn't need to. When the man was done, he towered over him. “You still have to learn to shoot,” he said before pulling him out the room.

Chapter Text

“Forty-three,” Jackson said, spotting him on the bench press.

 

He grunted, pushing the bar with what seemed like the last of his energy. He wanted to punch the blonde across the cheek, but he knew why Jackson had pulled him out of his office for a workout. He was strung out tight and one look in the mirror in the hallway had confirmed it. He had to admit he needed it.

 

“What's bothering you, man? I've never seen you like this,” his friend asked as he lowered the bar to his chest carefully.

 

“Nothing,” he grunted out, pushing the bar up again. They been in the weight room for a while now, but he knew the moment would come when Jackson would cut the shit and dissected him like a judge at a science fair. The moment had come sooner than he expected.

 

“It isn't ‘nothing,’ Jae. It's never just nothing with you.”

 

He gave one last cry as he pushed against the bar and placed it on its stirrups with Jackson's help. “I did what you said,” he said after a moment.

 

“You fucked the manny?” Jackson practically shrieked, stopping on his way to the pull-up bars to turn on him with a horrified expression on his usually stoic face. This… this was the Jackson he knew better than anyone else. The comical, approachable, friendly Jackson Wang. The Jackson not a lot of people had the pleasure to come to know because the younger hid it under a resting bitch face that could freeze hell and burn frozen tundras.

 

He sputtered, sitting up on the bench. “Manny?”

 

After a few pull-ups, Jackson hung from the bar with a thoughtful expression. “You know, male nanny,” Jackson panted, as soon as he dropped down from the bar.

 

“No, I don't know, and he has a name. It's Jinyoung.”

 

“You would know his name. Bet you sighed it… 많이.”

 

“Can you be serious for a second here?” he groaned, slightly annoyed at the pun.

 

Jackson dropped from the bar and looked at him. “Okay. Seriously, I don't see what the problem here.”

 

The problem? The problem was he fucked hired help. Hired help that was supposed to be attending to his sons’ needs, not his. “Jacks, I woke up and he was gone.”

 

“Ouch.”

 

“Exactly.”

 

“Wanna know what I think?”

 

He looked at his long time friend expectantly. When Jackson said that, there was no stopping him anyway.

 

“If it bothers you so much, feel him out. If it's something you want long term, go for it. If it's not, set it straight. Either way, talk to him.”

 

Feel him out? He’d done more than his fair share of feeling out Jinyoung.

 

Long term? What do I have to offer Jinyoung? He’d never thought about keeping someone at his side, besides Jackson, after Nayeon passed. Trusting didn't come easy to him. Nayeon had broken barriers naturally as his childhood best friend, marrying her hadn't been much of a choice. He had trusted her with his life.

 

Can I trust Jinyoung? He sighed as he stood on his feet. I'll have to gain his trust first.

 

“Where are you going?” Jackson asked, watching him from where he was leaning against the pull-up bar.

 

“To talk,” he replied briefly, walking out to hit the shower.

 

Jackson pushed of the bar and followed him out the room. They walked in comfortable silence through the house to the foyer. The only noise surrounding them were the soft buzz of electricity and distant clanging.

 

He barely crossed the threshold when he saw Jinyoung slipping in to the foyer closet. He stopped in his footsteps, beginning to fume at the scene in front of him. He was so furious, he actually saw red. He couldn't think - couldn't even speak.

 

What the fuck?

 

Fear gripped at him in its tight clutches until he almost felt weak in the knees. Alarms were blaring in his head as he watched Jinyoung pull his luggage into the closet and shut the door.

 

He just wanted to forget Jackson and his stupid comments about Jinyoung being the wrong type. He wanted to throw Jinyoung over his shoulder, march up the stairs, and fuck him until he came to his fucking senses.

 

As if on cue, Jackson walked in behind him and the rubber soles of his shoes squeaked against the floor. “Well, you better make it quick. We gotta leave…”

 

He didn't hear the rest of what Jackson had to say. He was still struggling to find another reason why Jinyoung would be stuffing his luggage in the foyer closet at the crack of dawn.

 

Jinyoung whipped around with a hand on his chest and stared at them with fear then dim relief. His perfect went slack and he got a peek of his pink tongue. The same tongue he had sucked on until he felt delirious with passion. The same tongue that had licked his cock until his eyes rolled back in his head.

 

He wanted to curse, but he couldn't get a word past his lips. He was saved from saying anything because Jinyoung’s face shifted into an expression of complete seriousness and he said something he never wanted to hear again.

 

“I'm leaving,” he said, lifting his chin. “I'm sure you can agree that it isn't a good idea for me to stay in the house.”

 

He blinked once, twice before he turned and walked away. He felt his world slipping away, but he couldn't find it in himself to turn back and do as he had planned to do when he was leaving the weight room. The thought of no longer feeling Jinyoung's warmth or seeing his smile made him feel empty, like his entire life force had been sucked out of him, leaving him with his anger.

 

He didn't stop walking. He let his feet carry him blindly to the elevators that lead to his suite, and when it opened up he stepped through and frantically jabbed at the only button that would take him away from the disaster.

 

As soon as he entered his room though, he his anger out. He reached for the nearest tabletop and wiped it clean with a sweep of his fist. The crystal vase of flowers shattered on impact with floor. Shards of glass slid across the hardwood floor as he flipped the table of its legs.. He didn't stop there. Turning, he drove his fists into the wall until he felt it give in under the force.

 

No matter how much he wanted Jinyoung, he knew he couldn't. He didn't have the luxury to. He couldn't fuck it up now that he was so close, just for a piece of ass. No matter how perfect that ass was. He had done the right thing by walking away.

 

If he wants to leave, he can leave. Fuck him! I don't need him. Who does he think he is? He's not the only one in the world with bubbly ass. Pffft… I can replace him in a heartbeat. Hell, when I find Nayeon's killer, I'll fuck every dark haired, bright-eyed, bubble-butt in the state of New York until I'm too dead to fuck. Good riddance.  This is for the best , he told himself.

 

He had already broken his sacred rule - never mix pleasure with good business. He had gotten too tangled up in Jinyoung. Last night, instead of focusing on the plan, he had slept with Jinyoung. He didn't need that shit in his life. A toy was meant for playing with then tossing when it wore out its shine - pure and simple. Anything more and they had you by the balls. The last thing he need was to be wrapped up in someone's fingers. No one was worth not avenging the death of the mother of his children. No one.

 

Not even Park Jinyoung.

 

He grit his teeth and walked to the shower. It was only when he was inside under the hot sprays did he realize Jackson had stayed behind. It made him even angrier to think of Jackson talking to Jinyoung. Does Jackson want him too? He swallowed against the ball of fury lodged in his throat. Would Jinyoung spread his beautiful legs for Jackson too? His fist clenched so tightly around his loofah that he felt his nails dig into the skin of his palm.

 

He rinsed off quickly and wrenched the door open. He walked out of the shower and hurriedly dressed. He barely had his pants buttoned and his tie knotted when he got in the elevator again. He wasn't surprised when he didn't find them in the foyer, so he made his way to the dining room where he found Jinyoung sitting with his kids having breakfast.

 

He sat at the head of the table and took deep calming breaths. He watched as Jinyoung cut Yugyeom's food up before he gave it to the child. The simple gesture calmed him a bit. Is he staying?

 

The children didn't seem alarmed or saddened, so Jinyoung must've not given them the news yet. He tucked into his breakfast and sipped his coffee slowly, dragging it out. He didn't want to leave. Not yet. Not until he spoke to Jinyoung.

 

He didn't wait a second more before he began to give instructions. “Mrs. Nody, please take Youngjae to his lessons. Yugyeom, follow your brother and you’re free to do what you want until Jinyoung can join you. Jinyoung, I need a word with you.”

 

He noticed the way Jinyoung stiffened at his name, but the man nodded his head, turning to smile at the children reassuringly. Youngjae was the last to stand, looking at Jinyoung with wide eyes. He watched as his kids were escorted out before he looked at Jinyoung.

 

“You can't leave,” he said, clenching his jaws.

 

“What?”

 

“I have business to attend to in Hong Kong. Jackson and I will be gone for two days. Please stay with the children until then.”

 

“I…” Jinyoung began, looking down at the napkin in his lap.

 

“It’s important. Do it for the children,” he said. He knew it was lame excuse, but he needed time. Time to think of whether or not Jinyoung was worth the trouble. Time to come up with a good reason for Jinyoung to stay.

 

Jinyoung nodded slowly as if mentally resigning himself. “I'll stay.”

 

A small part of him wanted to roar in victory, while another was saddened by the reaction he got. “Thank you,” he said before he walked out of the room.

 

When he got out of the house, he found Jackson standing by the door of his car that was opened and waiting for him to slide in. He didn't look at the man - he didn't need to. Jackson knew everything about him, sometimes before even he knew. He unbuttoned in jacket and slid in without a word. Jackson slid in beside him and he didn't wait for the man to settle before he started. “I'll replace him,” he said simply, trying to kill the top before it became an issue.

 

“I know,” Jackson replied.

 

“He'll stay with the boys until we get back. They need someone with them.”

 

“Now, you just sound like you're making excuses.”

 

He glared at the man.

 

“But it is a good idea to replace him, Jae. You got what you wanted. Now, throw it out. I've already spoken to Tzuyu to start arranging for new interviews.”

 

He looked out the window. Jackson was right. He was making excuses and he did get what he wanted. Replacing Jinyoung would be the best solution. The only solution. Replace Jinyoung and get back on track with his life.

 

He had let things go too far.

 

Too crazy.

Chapter Text

To kind of make up for the bad news he was about to deliver to them, he promised them an activity each they could choose to do. Youngjae eyes immediately became hopeful, brightening more than ever, and his heart ached knowing he would soon be the one to put out the light in them.

 

Blonde. I want to be blonde, he wrote on his notepad with frantic excitement.

 

He looked at the notepad, biting his lip as he thought it through. He didn't want to kill Youngjae's locks before they had a chance to really shine, so he tried his luck with a different color. “How about red? GD-Hyung had red hair and he looked pretty cool in it too.”

 

Youngjae thought about for a second before he nodded his head in agreement. He stood and sought out Tzuyu to get him Kool-Aid. He had had to spell it out for her, but within an hour, she found a supplier and presented him with eight packets, and he got to work.

 

They spent the entire afternoon in Youngjae's bathroom. He had given them a choice - they could leave the Kool-Aid in for an hour and it'll only be a little red, or leave it in for three and it'll be a bright, vibrant red. He thought they would cave in, and he had been half right. They played hand games, like Jack and Paul and Slide, until Yugyeom fell asleep in his lap and they didn't want to wake him. They busied themselves making bubbles with hand soap before a tray of freshly baked cookies, scones and muffins were brought to them, compliments of Seungjin. Halfway through a shower with a cap on, Yugyeom had found the cap too annoying and pulled it off. Youngjae on the other hand, was determined. He kept the thing on for the full three hours.

 

As he blow dried Youngjae's hair, the boy stuffed his mouth full of cookies. A look of amusement from him had Youngjae blushing and holding out his half-bitten cookie in offering. He accepted, playfully nipping the boy's fingers in the process. Youngjae grinned at him impishly, pulling away just in time to save his own limbs.

 

He heart warmed. He's so sweet and kind. If only things were different, I know I can get you to talk… A fresh wave of regret washed over him and he sighed, turning back to the boy's hair and his auburn-haired father.

 

He couldn't lie to himself. He missed Jaebum. Not in an emotional heartfelt way, but in a sexually frustrated way. He felt empty, but hot and at the same time, swollen from the violent fucking Jaebum had subjected him to the entire night. The man couldn’t keep his hands to himself the entire night. If his cock wasn't in him, pounding away, his hands were possessively wrapped around his cock and balls. It was… nice, and a part of him wanted it - wanted everything Jaebum could offer him - but another part of him questioned why he wasn't running scared already.

 

When he was done with Youngjae's hair, he ran his fingers through the red mass and turned him towards the mirror to see himself in the gigantic mirror. He expected joy, or at least, surprise at the new look and instead, Youngjae stopped chewing on his cookies and went quiet. Confusion and concern began to creep on him.

 

“What's wrong?” he asked, turning Youngjae to face him.

 

Second passed and Youngjae said nothing, then suddenly, he smiled a sad smile that tore his heart. It was unlike his usual quiet, yet bright, glowing smile. Instead of reassuring him, he began to feel anxious.

 

“What's wrong, Youngjae?” he pleaded, trying to hide the quiver in his voice and failing miserably.

 

Youngjae burst into tears. Heart-wrenching sobs that didn't just come from his chest, but his entire body. He realize then that Youngjae was tired. Tired of trying to be an adult and taking care of God only knows what. Tired of hiding his emotions. Tired of not being a kid and being carefree.

 

He wanted so much to gather Youngjae in his arms and promise to protect him forever, but he found himself at a crossroads. He didn't know how to help Youngjae. “Please, don't cry, baby. Just tell me what's wrong. Please. Maybe I can help,” he begged, but Youngjae refused to answer. The boy just shook his head stubbornly and buried his chubby cheeks into his shirt, crying his little heart out.

 

Sighing in defeat, he wrapped Youngjae in a warm embrace and let the boy cry it out, patting him comfortingly on the back. His heart cracked, ached and squeezed as he thought about how he would inevitably break Youngjae's heart when he had to leave. If he was really being honest with himself, he couldn't bring himself to leave Youngjae in such a fragile state.

 

He made his decision - leaving Youngjae would hurt him more than suffering from a heartbreak. He would just stay away from Jaebum. He would follow through on his promise and help Youngjae's suffer soul.

 

He picked Youngjae up off the bathroom counter and brought him into his room, where he laid the boy down and fitted himself beside him. He spooned Youngjae small fragile body and began to draw soothing circles on the boy's back to calm him.

 

Not for the first time, he wondered what had truly stunned Youngjae into silence. Is he hurt because he can't talk or is he being haunted by the loss of his mother?

 

He looked around the room - at the toys and books on the shelf, the doorway leading into the gigantic bathroom, the huge walk-in closet filled with designer clothes, the easel in the corner, the baby grand piano in the reception room. Youngjae had more than he could've ever dreamed of having as a child and he didn't need to share anything with his younger brother.

 

He loved his parents, but they lived a very Bourgeois life. His parents made enough to get him and his sister through school, but he had always had to think about his sister’s. Aside from his clothes, he shared everything with him and got second-hand toys his elder sisters grew out of. Rather than getting angry at the unfairness of life, he learned to return its chill and aloofness to everything and everyone around him without feeling an ounce of remorse. Except for Mark.

 

And now… Youngjae. In that moment, he believed Youngjae was truly sadder than he has ever felt in his life.

 

He cradled Youngjae in his arms, feeling helpless with each wretched sob. He knew from experience that the tears would leave a cathartic feeling from whatever demons haunted the him. Eventually, Youngjae quieted down, and when he did, he pulled away and shuffled off the bed. He watched as Youngjae dug deep into his chest of toys until he produced a single tattered photograph.

 

He waited patiently until Youngjae came back over to him with it. He knew he was about to be shown into the world inside the boy’s head and he didn’t want to push. It was very important to Youngjae.

 

Youngjae held out the photo with both hands, and with a great show of respect, he took it and looked at it. It was an image of a pretty young woman with spring honey blonde hair and soft brown eyes. Where Jaebum was cold and irreproachable, Nayeon was the complete opposite. She radiated sunlight, much like her son. Her skin was unmarred, porcelain smooth and looked at soft as cream. She was laughing, buck teeth showing through her perfect bow-tie shaped lips.

 

His heart fell when he realized he’s never heard Youngjae laugh. Not once.

 

He was so engrossed by the photo that it was only when Youngjae nudged him with his notepad, did he look at the boy. He looked down at what he had scribbled and the words written on them made his heart seize in his chest.

 

Mama was murdered.

 

“What do you mean?” he asked, shocked.

 

Youngjae opened his mouth as though to say something, but then suddenly shook his head as if reminding himself not to. He took the picture back from him and returned it to its original place. Then he climbed back into bed and shut his eyes.

 

It was clear he was shutting not just his eyes, but the world with it. He saw tears seep past his closed lids and his heart ached uncontrollably. He let Youngjae cry. He needed it.

 

He waited until Youngjae was so exhausted that he fell asleep before he did the first thing he could think of.

 

He called Mark.

Chapter Text

“Youngjae showed me a pictured of Nayeon,” he said as soon as Mark answered his phone.

 

“What?” he asked trying to suppress him yawn.

 

“The poor child cried herself to sleep,” he said sadly, his thoughts still stuck on Youngjae.

 

Mark yawned again, and it was only then it occurred to him that he had woken Mark up. His eyes narrowed suspiciously at the clock on Youngjae’s wall. It was past three in the afternoon. “Why are you asleep at this time?”

 

“I’ll tell you later,” Mark said groaning.

 

“Are you okay?” he asked.

 

“I am,” he responded. “You’re the one who sounds like you have the weight of the world on your shoulders.”

 

“It’s nothing. Call me back when you’re awake, okay?”

 

“No, let’s talk now,” Mark said, alertness coming into his voice. “I won’t be able to sleep if I let you go now.”

 

His heart swelled at Mark’s boundless selflessness whenever it came to him. After what happened with Jaebum, it was just the type of warmth he needed for his bruised soul.

 

He went straight for the kill. “I slept with Jaebum.”

 

Silence.

 

“Are you asleep?”

 

“Ummm…”

 

“Okay. You’re shocked,” he observed, imagining Mark rubbing the sleep from his eyes.

 

“You actually did it?” Mark asked instead.

 

“What do you mean?”

 

“I don’t know. A part of me thought wouldn’t. You tend to run away from things that are too threatening to your peace of mind.”

“Well, you’re not completely wrong. I packed my stuff up. Right now, my luggage is in a closet in the foyer.”

 

“As expected. Does that mean he was a disappointment?”

 

He shook his head. “The opposite. I’m still… sore?”

 

“Damn! A good fuck then. So why the hell are you leaving?”

 

He gave Mark a half-truth. “He’s dangerous, Mark. I was at his company yesterday, and there was guns everywhere .” Okay, he exaggerated a bit. “I think I even saw a dead body too.” Not a lie.

 

Mark was silent for a moment. “And?”

 

It was not a reaction he expected, but he wondered what reaction he did expect. “Did you hear what I said?”

 

“Yeah. You saw a guns and a dead body.”

 

“Exactly.”

 

“What does that have to do with you? Your only concern is the kids. Are you that scared you’ll fall for him?” Mark asked

 

“I’m not going to fall for him!” he replied a little too heatedly.

 

“Okay,” Mark responded unconvinced.

 

“You know what, it’s fine.”

 

“By the way, I did more research on your boss. According to good ole Google, he owns a massive conglomerate – construction, manufacturing, real estate, investment, cyber security. A whole host of other things and now, you tell me he can fuck well too. What I wouldn’t give to be in your place right now.”

 

Well is putting it lightly.”

 

“Did you confirm his dick size?” Mark asked a little too excitedly.

 

“Mark!”

 

“What? That was the main point of all this, wasn’t it?”

 

“No, and no, I didn’t confirm it,” he said. “All I remember was the ceiling… it was green.”

 

“Still, you should be able to gauge it? Did you guys do it on a bed?”

 

“The first time?”

 

“There was another time?” Mark squeaked.

 

“You know, forget it.”

 

“Don’t you dare hang up on me, Park Jinyoung!”

 

“I was pinned against the wall okay?”

 

“Damn, can I take you place? I think quitting was the best decision you ever made this year. Just recommend me as your replacement, please.”

 

“I hate you,” he said flatly.

 

“I’m not joking.”

 

“That’s the problem,” he said.

 

Mark sighed. “Can you come back to the apartment tonight?”

 

He was about to say no, but then he thought why the hell not? He could take the boys out of the house and make an attempt at getting Youngjae to leave as well. When they get to the apartment, he could see what Mark made of Youngjae. It was a perfect solution. “It might be possible. Jaebum is away on a business trip for a couple of days, so I could take the boys with me. It’ll probably do them both some good.” He paused. “There’s security everywhere though. I don’t think it’ll be that easy. Let me think…”

 

“Dodge them. Go out for ice cream or something, and lose them from there.”

 

“Mark-Hyung, I know you’re already excited by the idea, but these guys aren’t exactly Mr. Kim look-a-likes,” he said, referring to their old co-worker – a meek, old widower. “One of them could literally snap our necks with one hand at the same time.”

 

“Uh, that’s murder.”

 

“Exactly. It seems like something they can be easily be provoked into doing too.”

 

Mark sighed heavily. “Get yourself and the boys out of the house tonight. I’ll meet you at the place where we bought my favorite red shoes,” he said mysteriously, making him roll his eyes. “We’ll figure it out from there. Don’t worry.”

 

“Alright,” he agreed, and ended the call.

Chapter Text

“How are the boys?”

 

Two words. A simple question, but Kookie hesitated for a fraction of a second and it was enough to have the small hairs at the nape of his neck to stand on end. He stopped in his tracks and turned to glare at the thick-headed brute. His eyes furtively darted away from his, so he turned fully to face the man. His heart began to feel like lead in his chest.

 

Kookie cleared his throat. “We’re sure they’re alright, Boss. The manny... he took them out last night, but they should be returning soon.”

 

“What?” he bellowed.

 

Kookie swallowed thickly, his Adam’s apple bobbing nervously. “There’s no reason why they shouldn’t be returning soon,” he repeated fearfully.

 

“Where did Jinyoung take my kids?” he asked refusing to believe his ears as he turned to watched Jackson walk down the ladder, disembarking the plane.

 

Kookie began to stutter, shuffling his feet as he unbuttoned his sleeves and rolled them up his forearm. His mind racing with the myriad of possibilities. Instinctively, Kookie took a step back, but before he could take another, his bulk of muscles and flesh hit the hot tarmac with a thud.

 

His wrist throbbed painfully, but before he could go after the man again, Jackson was on him, pulling him away. Kookie stood on his feet unsteadily and was holding his hands up as if to appease him before he stumbled off. The four others who had acted as their escorts made no move to follow Kookie, so he growled at them to get lost.

He jerked himself free of Jackson’s hold, and while flexing his hand, he made his way to the black Mercedes waiting for him across the tarmac. His chauffeur jumped out of the driver’s seat and rounded the car to open the door for him, but he slid into the driver’s seat and sent a prayer of thanks the idiot left the engine running. He put the car into motion and was screeching off the tarmac in seconds.

 

He called Jinyoung’s phone on his way, but as expected, it went straight to voicemail, so he turned his GPS on and entered the address the man had provided on his resume.

 

It was an apartment in a rundown neighborhood in downtown, and it didn’t take him long to get there. By the time he did, his temper was close to exploding. Youngjae and Yugyeom weren’t meant to leave the house without security. That was the one unbreakable law he’d given the entire staff, and they had broken it. Never without his permission either and certainly not to a place like downtown where no reconnaissance had been done beforehand.

He banged on the chipped painted white door, and began to count to twenty before he decided to break down the door. At sixteen, it was pulled open by a laughing blonde with stone grey eyes. He was a bit shorter than Jinyoung by right about the same age as he was. His eyes widened when their eyes met. “You’re Jaebum,” he said, then shook his head. “I mean, you’re Jinyoung’s employer. Youngjae and Yugyeom’s father.”

 

“Where are my kids?” he growled.

 

“Down the hall,” he said, jerking a hand over his shoulder. “Jinyoung is giving them a bath.” The blonde stepped out of his way at the same time that he barged into the house and barreled his way down the direction he pointed in.

 

“Hey, hang on a minute.”

 

He ignored the blonde, bursting into the door at the end of the hall to a picture that should’ve warmed his heart, but it only angered him more. Youngjae was squealing as Jinyoung tousled his wet hair in a towel laughing. Yugyeom was still in the tub, splashing around gleefully at the bubbles.

 

At his sudden arrival, all three boys jumped in shock.

 

“Jaebum?” Jinyoung gasped. His eyes immediately filled with dismay.

 

The look only served to make him even more furious.

 

He turned his gaze down to Youngjae, who stepped behind Jinyoung’s legs and look at him with the usual terror that appeared in them whenever he was near.

 

His hair was bright red. He glanced back at Yugyeom to find the same thing just a less vibrant red against his dark brown locks.

 

“What the fuck did you do to their hair?” he yelled.

 

“It’s not hair dye. It’s just Kool-Aid. It’s perfectly safe,” Jinyoung rushed to explain.

 

“You have ten minutes to get them dressed and in the car,” he said, before he walked away.

Chapter Text

“He fired everyone,” Tzuyu exclaimed.

 

All the strength he had left him and he sagged to the couch, closing his eyes and cradling the phone to his ear. “How is that possible?”

 

“All sixteen of us,” she said. “He was at least kind enough to give us twenty-four hours to get out. I'm packing my things right now. I’m so confused.”

 

“He can't do that. I'll be right there,” he decided, standing back up.

 

“I don't think you should come. I've seen him angry before, but not like this. It's a scary sight.”

 

“But what about your jobs?” he asked. “I can't stand by and do nothing when this was all my fault.”

 

“There's nothing you can do. You're automatically fired too. The only person who can change his mind at this point is probably Mr. Wang.”

 

“Who is that?”

 

“His best friend. You know, the blonde that looks harmless, but is as cold as ice… always around him,” she said.

 

Oh, Jackson. “Do you have his number?”

 

“Of course, but I'm still bound by my NDA. I'm not allowed to give it out under any circumstances,” she said before she paused. “Give me a minute - Jinyoung!” she said referring to the butler, catching him by surprise.

 

“Oh my God! Did he fire Mr. Park too?” he asked in shock. Mr. Park was one of the few people he actually liked when he was first introduced to the staff on his first day.

 

“No, not him. Mr. Park is like a father to him. He's the only one left, and security. The very ones who didn't do their jobs in the first place. No offense.”

 

“I'm so sorry,” he said, groaning. “He meant to be away for two days. I didn't know he would be back so suddenly,” he cried, filled with remorse. “I'll fix this. Please give me Mr. Wang's number.”

 

They ended the call and seconds later, a text came in with Jackson's number.

 

Mark was sitting in the couch adjacent to him, sipping hot chocolate milk with marshmallows. “I dont think ive ever seen you so… bothered,” he said, studying him. “Calm down before you call... whoever it is you're going to call, okay?”

 

He nodded and waited until the nervous tremors in his hands eased a bit. His hands were still a bit shaky when he finally conjured the courage to dial Jackson's number. He began to pace when the call connected and the ringing started. When the ringing stopped, his heart slammed against his rib cage. “Mr. Wang? This is… uh… Park Jinyoung. Jaebum’s nanny.”

 

“Ah, the manny.”

 

“I'm sorry. What was that?” he strained to hear, unsure he had heard the man correctly.

 

“What do you want?” Jackson asked coldly.

 

The man’s tone made his hope die on the spot, but he couldn't give up. At least not until Jackson told him no to his face, but even then he wouldn't stop trying to sort out the mess he made. “Please help me talk to Jae-... I mean, Mr. Im. Taking the boys out of the house was my decision - none of the other household staff were even aware. He can't make everyone suffer on my account.” He could hear his voice beginning to crack, so he paused to take a breath and Jackson took it as a cue to speak.

 

“Why are you calling me?” he asked indifferently. “I'm not the one who fired them.”

 

“You're the only… no, I heard you're the only one he listens to.”

 

“Jaebum listens to everyone.”

 

For a moment, he was taken aback the comment. Whether it was good or bad news, he didn't know. Neither did he know what to do with the information.

 

“Now, if that's all, I have other things to attend to.”

 

Silence greeted him and he looked at his phone in shock until Mark’s pulled him back to the present.

 

“What did he say?” he asked.

 

He sighed heavily. “He said he can't help. In so little, cutting words too, that I don't know what to do. He did also say that Jaebum listens to everyone,” he replied. “What does that even mean?” he cried.

 

Mark looked at him blankly before he grimaced. “That doesn't sound good.”

 

“What do I do now?” he asked.

 

Mark got that distant look on his face he usually got when he was thinking. “No one listens to everyone. Who is this guy? Is he as hot as Jaebum? Maybe I can seduce answers from him. Jaebum was fucking hot - I doubt his wingman is hideous.”

 

He scoffed. “Mark! Not now.”

 

“Alright. Fine. Calm down.”

 

“Stupid alpha males! They're so fucking cold and stubborn. They talk like words cost money.” He caught bits and pieces of the underhanded remark Mark made, but chose to ignore it. “What if he means it exactly as he says it? Not that listens to everyone, but that he gives everyone a chance to explain and makes his own decisions.”

 

Mark’s face pinched into confusion. “Doesn't that mean the same thing? Since he's Chinese too, maybe it's a second language thing. I mean, sometimes I can't explain certain things in English, so I use the Mandarin form of it.”

 

“Yes,” he said distractedly. “I don't have any other choice. I have to go see Jaebum.”

 

Mark smiled mysteriously.  “Mhmm…”

 

“What do you mean ‘mhmm?’

 

“Nothing,” his friend said, looking away from him. His smile widened to a full-on grin.

 

He shot Mark a dark look before he hurriedly walked off to get ready.

Chapter Text

When he drove home with the boys in the backseat, he should've felt relieved, but instead he was infuriated. What he really wanted to do was go back and take Jinyoung in his arms. He wanted to scold the man for being careless and negligent... then punish him - the only way he knew would drive the man crazy. He wanted to whip Jinyoung's plump was until it was cherry red and burning with pain, so that when he fucked into the man, he would scream with pleasure and pain. His cock hardened irritatingly at the thought of Jinyoung spread out and begging him to fuck him.

 

Instead I find him creeping down the stairs with his fucking luggage, ready to fucking run.

 

He glanced through the rearview mirror at his boys. Yugyeom was rubbing the tears from his eyes with one hand while holding Youngjae's hand with the other. Youngjae was looking sullenly out the window. The evening sun turned his new red hair into a halo that was light brightly. When he had found his kids in Jinyoung's apartment, he should've felt happy and ecstatic. He couldn't remember the last time he had seen his kids being… kids. Happy and laughing, carefree. Jinyoung had somehow managed to get Youngjae to leave the compound of the mansion.

 

As he looked at them now, he could understand Jinyoung's good intentions, but the man couldn't even fathom the danger he had placed the kids in. If he had, he would never have even thought about it. He couldn't let Jinyoung in… at least not yet.

 

The sight of Jinyoung’s packed luggage had jarred him to his core. It was rejection in the cruelest form, and it had stayed in his mind the entire trip to Hong Kong. He couldn't get his mind off of it so much he had cut his trip short. Jackson had given odd, knowing looks the entire time too, that he had grown annoyed by it.

 

What does he even fucking know anyways? No one's ever grabbed his cock the way Jinyoung did mine.

 

It had been a drastic measure, firing the entire household, but it was the only way to bring Jinyoung back. He needed Jinyoung back. He couldn't leave until he waa done with him.

 

He glanced down at his watch. Anytime now. If I know anything about Jinyoung, it's that he's got a big heart.

 

He was on the phone a couple of minutes later with his lawyer when he heard the weak knock on his office door. He glanced at the monitor of his computer and smirked a little when he saw Jinyoung's brown hair filled half the camera hidden on the top corner of the door jamb. Slim fingers raked through the tresses and his breath caught at the gesture.

 

“Mr. Im,” his lawyer called through the phone. “Are you still there, Sir?”

 

“I am,” he said, watching as Jinyoung closed his eyes for a second before opening them again and pounded on the door with his fist. “Hold on.” He turned towards the door. “Come in.”

 

A moment later, the door swung open and Jinyoung stepped in, looking immediately at his desk. When the man found he wasn't there, his eyes swept the the room until they landed on him where he stood leaning against the fireplace mantle. His lips parted as if he were about to say something, but they snapped shut when he realized he was on the phone.

 

He watched Jinyoung carefully until the man lowered his gaze, but folded his arms across his chest in an aggressive stance. He took his time ending the call with his lawyer, knowing full well that when the call ended the real match would start, but he'd have better chances of getting his way when Jinyoung was more calm.

 

As he ended the call, he strode over to his desk and sat before he started. “What do you want?” he asked, looking back at Jinyoung.

 

For a second, he thought Jinyoung would cry. “I-I want to apologize. Please don't fire everyone.”

 

He stared at the man without expression and he began to pale. The blue shadows under Jinyoung’s eyes pained him.

 

“I'll take all the blame. It was my fault, they had nothing to do with what I did. They didn't even know. Why punish them when it's clearly my fault?’

 

“It's the responsibility of the entire household to ensure the safety of my children.”

 

“They weren't in any danger. I just thought it would do Youngjae some good to get him out of the house. Isn't that what you wanted? For him to leave the compound?”

 

He waited a moment before answering. “Yes, but not to a place where no scouting was done beforehand,” he said, looking down at the papers on his desk.

 

“Jaebum,” Jinyoung called.

 

At the sound of his name, he looked back up at the man. He wanted to hear it again.

 

As usual, Jinyoung instantly withdrew. “Please, I'm begging you. I can't have the entire household's unemployment on my conscience.”

 

“Didn't you read the terms of your contract? Their removal from the grounds of the compound without permission was explicitly banned.”

 

Jinyoung shut his eyes. “I am so sorry. Look Jaebum, if there is something I can do to make it up to you, I'll do it.”

 

“Fine. I'll keep everyone…”

 

Jinyoung's eyes flew open and his breath was taken away again by the sheer hope in them.

 

“If you come back too.”

 

Confusion and slight suspicion filled Jinyoung’s eyes. “What do you mean?”

 

“You know exactly what I mean. I saw Youngjae laugh for the first time in a long time and that was because of you. I want you to continue to do what you were doing - just please don't take my kids somewhere without security, or you could be endangering them.”

 

Jinyoung's eyes bulged. “Why are they in danger?”

 

“I can't tell you right now, but please just take my word for it.”

 

The man dropped his eyes and nodded. “Okay. I'll come back.”

 

It took everything in him not to leap with joy, but he somehow succeeded. “Good. You can go back to doing whatever it is you were doing. Call Tzuyu. Give her the good news.” He had to strain to hear, but he was almost entirely sure Jinyoung whispered a ‘thank you.’ “That'll be all.”

 

Jinyoung looked up then, and a million questions swirled in his mind. He wanted to Jinyoung to sit down and tell him everything, but it was too soon. Instead of questioning his motives, Jinyoung stood and walked to the door.

 

Only when Jinyoung's hand touch the doorknob did he speak again. “Be in my room tonight.” He didn't bother to look up until he heard the door slam behind the man.

 

He let his amusement loose, letting a short chuckle out. “That's my baby boy.”

Chapter Text

I'm staying for the boys and the household staff , he kept reminding himself. He had tried to take the easier route by running away and instead - thanks to Jaebum - the harder path was his only option.

 

The rest of the household walked on eggshells for the rest of the day. Mostly out of confusion. There was no doubt they would whether Jaebum was on the compound or not.

 

“I just don't get it,” Joy said later that night after dinner. She was the youngest member on the household staff and was in charge of cleaning his room. He wouldn't exactly call her a friend, but neither could he call her a foe. She was in a household made almost completely up of Chinese. “He fires all of us and rehires us in the same day. Including you.”

 

He didn't miss the disdain in her voice as he glanced back at her and shrugged. She didn't need more information than she already has, he decided. Deep in thought, he stood to get a mug for himself in the cupboard. The kettle of hot water was nearly about to whistle and he wanted a cup of chrysanthemum tea front the top of the cupboard to calm himself, but he startled by his phone ringing in his back pocket. Flinching in fright, he settled back on his heels and placed a hand over his heart as he looked at his phone screen.

 

“Are you okay, Jinyoung-ah?” Mr. Park asked in concern. “You've been jumpy all day.”

 

“I would be too, if I were him,” Joy piped in.

 

He didn't bother to feel provoked. He didn't recognize the number, but answered anyways, “Hell-”

 

“It's almost ten,” Jaebum’s voice came booming from the other side. “Where are you?”

 

For a moment, he was too stunned to reply before he began to feel embarrassed, then annoyed. Jaebum was summoning him like he was a prostitute he hired in front of the entire staff, and he couldn't even voice his outrage. A deal was a deal. “I'll be right there,” he said coldly.

 

“Are you going somewhere?” Mrs. Lucy asked.

 

She knows. “Mr. Im asked for some tea,” he replied calmly.

 

“He only drinks black coffee - Americanos, to be exact,” Joy said innocently.

 

He could only shrug and try to ignore the six pairs of confused eyes as he prepared a cup of Chrysanthemum tea. He set it on a tray and left the room as fast as his feet could carry him with a quiet good night to everyone. The quiet tension he left behind told him he would be the subject of their next conversation, but there was nothing he could do about it.

 

He got to the elevator leading the Jaebum's room, but as he looked at the keypad entry, he sagged. He looked back down the hall in the direction he came and contemplated going back to ask Mrs. Liu for the code, but the scrutiny he would no doubt face, made him hesitate. He set the tray on a table nearby and dialed the unsaved number.

 

“Type in 1722 and the code will take you straight up to.”

 

He did as instructed and sighed in a mixture of relief and helplessness when the doors slid open. As soon as he stepped into the elevator, the doors slid shut and he was swept up.

 

When it dinged open, his breath caught. It was nothing like he had imagined. It was obvious Jaebum had an entire floor to himself, but that wasn't what made him stop short and feel ashamed of himself.

 

A large portrait of Jaebum, Nayeon and their children hung on the wall opposite from the elevator. The happiness that was captured of Nayeon and Jaebum sitting on their couch watching a laughing baby Yugyeom on his knees laughing at his brother was almost blinding. The light in Youngjae's eyes was one he'd only seen once and seeing it as he looked at Nayeon, reaching for her made his heart ache. It was obvious Youngjae loved his mother dearly, and that the feeling was mutual. Jaebum, on the other hand, was looking at his children as if they had hung the stars in the night sky with the sheer force of their smiling faces.

 

A door opened and he looked to see Jaebum step out. Their eyes met and he took a step back, shaking his head. “I-I can't do this.”

 

“Lose the tray,” Jaebum growled, walking towards him.

 

“I’m sorry,” he said, turning back to the elevator.

 

He forgot his anger. He forgot the deal. He forgot everything. All he knew was he felt ashamed of himself. He felt like he was trying to intrude on something that wasn't his. He felt like “the other woman” - cheap, expendable, ruined, and utterly owned.

 

“Stop!” Jaebum roared.

 

He froze, dropping the tray in fright. Immediately, he bent over to retrieve the shattered cup, but Jaebum grasped his hand tightly.

 

“Leave it,” the man growled, pulling on his wrist until he stood facing him. “No more running, Jinyoung.”

 

The deep timbre of Jaebum’s voice sent a shiver up his spine and he angrily covered Jaebum's mouth with his, wanting to hear it again. “Run?” he asked between kisses. “I can never get too far before you haul me back here.”

 

“Then stop. Run to me, not away,” Jaebum nearly plead, cupping his face.

 

Earlier that day, he had been sure he would never see Jaebum again, but the man had fought him - for them. For whatever this crazy desire was between them, Jaebum had fought and in that moment, he appreciated the man.

 

He let that desire consume him as he tore at the man's buttons. He trembled with that desire, needing to be completely possessed and fucked in a way only Jaebum knew how to. Of one thing he was completely sure of - Jaebum was the lust of his life. Nothing and no one could ever compare to him.

 

Jaebum pulled away and looked into his eyes. “How could you leave me so easily?” the man rasped out.

 

He didn't want to talk. Talking would only complicate things more than it already was, so he looked down, reaching for the man's belt buckle and began to pull at the leather.

 

Jaebum pulled even further away, forcing him to look up at the man's face. “Talk to me.”

 

He felt alive , buzzing with need, and his blood was pumping loud in his ears. He could practically feel the blood coming in and out of his heart, but what could he say? He couldn't say anything. At least nothing the man wanted to hear. He couldn't offer anything to him either. Just himself, so he pulled at the seams of his own shirt, sending the buttons flying before he pulled his pants down. He stood in front of Jaebum in nothing but his boxers, watching the lust in his eyes darken.

 

“We don't need to talk,” he said. “I want you and you want me.  It's okay not to go further than that.” The words tasted foul in his mouth and even as he said them, he knew they weren't true. It wasn't okay. He wanted more. Far more than he could ever have. He knew his heart would break when the time came to leave, but he would rather have this and a broken heart than nothing at all. He would live with the shame he already felt, but he wouldn’t live with regret.

 

The air was thick with a tension that even a pin hitting the floor would’ve been deafening until Jaebum turned away and walked to the bed. He quietly stripped.

 

He feasted his eyes on Jaebum's back muscles that twitched and undulated under his skin as he peeled his shirt off. The pure virility of the man's body made his cock swell and throb painfully in his boxers. He forgot how to breathe as Jaebum pulled his pants down to reveal his firm ass.

 

He went to the man then. He pressed his chest into Jaebum's back as he placed soft, worshipping kisses against his shoulder blades that made him shudder. Jaebum never turned to him, letting him explore and soon, his mouth and tongue was dancing across the muscles of his ass.

 

He didn't know if it was too much, but he didn't care. He sank to his knees, edged his head between Jaebum's spread legs and sucked a ball into his mouth, rolling it across his tongue, earning himself a soft groan. He didn't have much power in the world, but on his knees for Jaebum was all he could offer, and he felt his power in the sacs of lust.

 

He smiled with satisfaction as he turned and inched his way upwards, running his tongue against Jaebum's thick shaft. The man's erection was thick and almost a purple shade - it looked almost painfully so.

 

A pearly bead of prelim oozed out of the tip and lapped at it, moaning at the salty, sweet burst that hit him. A hand grasped him by the hair and he whimpered. Jaebum seemed untouchable, unmoveable, but he knew the simple act shook his very foundation. It seemed unreal.

 

He focused on spiking that pleasure as he sucked long and hard, following his cheeks.

 

“Suck me off,” Jaebum rasped out. “We have a long night ahead of us.”

 

He did as instructed, his heart pounding with excitement. With other men in the past, he had hated the taste of them, but with Jaebum, he didn’t want to waste a drop. It seemed as if his body thought Jaebum walked on water. His mouth worship every slope, edge and crevice of his body, mapping it out and embedding an image in his mind.

 

He let the man do whatever he wanted to him. He let Jaebum hold his head in place and fuck his mouth, and when he was close, he pulled out.

 

“Open your mouth,” Jaebum growled, fisting his cock roughly, and when he did, the man began to spurt. “Fuck,” he growled as jet after jet of hot cum filled his mouth.

 

He didn’t swallow immediately. He swirled it around in his mouth until Jaebum told him to do so. He barely had every drop sliding down his throat before he was hauled off his feet and dumped on the bed.

 

His boxers were ripped off his and his legs were spread. Jaebum dove at him. “Jae-...” he cried when the man buried his face between his ass cheeks. He moaned and shook helplessly under the assault, rocking his hips back. He could barely stand the intensity of the pleasure rolling through him, but he couldn’t find it in himself to push the man away. He simply let himself drown in the pleasure.

 

“Jaebum,” he called out when he was close to coming, but the man amped up his ministrations, reaching under him to tug at his cock. “J-Jae…” he cried out desperately, tears gathering in his eyes. He reached back, burying his hand in the man;s soft locks. “Please… Jaebum… Jaebum…Jaebum…”

 

The man added a finger, plunging it deep into his ass, rubbing the his walls perfectly and he came shamelessly. Waves of mind-blowing pleasure crashed into him, his eyes rolled to the back of his head and his eyes glazed over. Black spots filled his vision before blinding white lights cleared them. He shuddered falling on the bed, his hands clenched around the bed sheets trying to ground himself.

 

In the aftermath, he lay there shaking like a leaf in the wind as he looked up at the burgundy ceiling. How can we go from being this intimate to acting like strangers in the blink of an eye? He couldn’t understand any of it. He wanted to hold Jaebum and never let him go. In that moment, he shut off his brain and did exactly that.

 

He pulled Jaebum up and held him tightly to his chest, his arms wound around him like vines. He held Jaebum as tenderly and as possessively as he could in a desperate embrace. In that moment, Jaebum felt like home. He wanted to kiss every inch of Jaebum and treasure him. Just for a moment, he let himself believe Jaebum was his and no one else’s. Not Youngjae’s. Not Yugyeom’s. Certainly, not Nayeon’s.

 

His.

 

He was about to let go of Jaebum, aware that he had overstepped boundaries he shouldn’t have, when Jaebum slipped his arms around him and rolled over until he was on top. He kept still and only shut his eyes when Jaebum buried his face in his neck.

 

For a moment, he felt confused, but he pushed the confusion aside and cradled Jaebum’s body against his, mirroring the man. He buried his face in Jaebum’s neck and breathed his natural scent, hiding himself as they both tried to compose themselves.

 

And then it began again.

 

Jaebum shifted under him and in one sharp thrust, the man filled him. Every nerve ending in his body came alive and swayed to the beating of the man's drums. His body naturally found its rhythm, dancing with Jaebum's sensuously. It wasn't love making. It was purely primal. A carnal need to consume and be consumed by lust.

 

Every slap of skin rang in his ears like the sweetest music. Every touch burned. Every kiss drowned him. Every drag of Jaebum's cock against his walls stoked the fire and pulled that coil in his groin.

 

Over and over again, Jaebum would pull him to the edge, only to shove him away from it. “Jae-Jaebum,” he whimpered, “please.” He forgot his shame. He begged desperately for release. Jaebum’s cock thickened even further inside him, then in one powerful thrust they came together beautifully.

 

Too exhausted to move, he collapsed on the man, panting. He might’ve blacked out. He wasn’t sure. All he felt was a perfect high - the buzz of every nerve in his body zinging with overstimulation and exhaustion as sleep called to him. He fell asleep with one of Jaebum’s hand cupping his cock and the other wound around his neck.

Chapter Text

He woke up alone, his mind coming awake in an instant. Jinyoung’s scent still lingering in the air, but when he turned to reach for the man, he was gone. He’d fallen asleep to the feel of Jinyoung’s cock in one hand and the beat of his thundering heart in the other. His lily of the valley scent had lulled him to sleep.

 

And now he was awake, and his mouth was haunted by the taste of Jinyoung.

 

He looked blindly up at the ceiling. A strange overwhelming feeling of warmth filled him as he thought about what Jinyoung had done. The man had pulled him up to himself, and held him in his arms. Silently, as if they were one body. No one had ever done that to him, not even Nayeon. No one ever dared to try to.

 

He sat upright. It was still dark in his room. The digital clock on his bedside table showed that it was 3:30 am. He could’ve waited until morning to leave. He was willing to bet though that Jinyoung had snuck out of the room as soon as he fell asleep.

 

I don’t understand him! he thought in frustration. The man wanted him with a ferocity that matched his, but as soon as the sex was off the table, he became distant and almost cold. Is he afraid of me? Did I go too far letting him see that bastard’s dead body?

 

He swung his feet over the side of the bed before he realized something. Jinyoung is the first one to leave my bed without waking me up. No matter how tired I was, I could never really relax enough to sleep so well with someone other than Nayeon.

 

It was evident Jinyoung was slowly unravelling him. Each wall he had built around himself, since his mother had died by his father’s hand, came tumbling down at Jinyoung’s hands with a shocking ease that rattled him, and yet he held as much impact on Jinyoung’s as a tiny pebble.

 

Beyond our fuck sessions, that is, he thought deadpanned. Isn’t that what I was though? A quick fuck? Why is it so fucking irritating when he does it though? I never fucking asked him to.

 

He stood up seething with anger, heading towards the bathroom. He skipped his usual pissing session and jumped into the shower. He let the water and the memories of Jinyoung’s mouth on his cock wash over him as he redirected his anger into lust, pumping his cock brutally. He fantasized about fucking Jinyoung so hard he screamed for mercy and when he came, it was sweet, but it left him more empty than he cared to think about.

 

He couldn’t get over the jarring way he had came at the shooting range. He had never felt like that, even with Nayeon. He was at all sure whether he had lost consciousness for a little bit after. Even hours after he was still reeling from it and nursing his longing that was nothing short of cruel.

 

He switched the water off and chuckled mirthlessly as he leaned against the way and looked up at the burgundy ceiling. Jackson always said that life was all fun and games until someone loses a fucking eye. I’ve been fucking around my whole life and now, I’m about to lose more than a fucking eye.

 

He stepped out of the shower and pulled a towel around his waist, his cock still semi-hard and dissatisfied. He knew he wouldn’t be able to go back to sleep without finishing what he had already started. The thought of slamming into Jinyoung and relishing the tight clench of his ass squeezing his dick was too tempting that it had him opening his door and making his way to the man’s room.

 

He found Jinyoung curled up on his bed shivering and felt himself shiver from the cold in the room. The man had left the air conditioning on too high, so he turned it down and opened a window to let the cold out before he went back to stand by the bed. He stood silently staring at Jinyoung with all his emotions warring in him.  

 

He looked like a child, so peaceful and vulnerable in his sleep that he wanted to hold and protect him, but he also knew he would only be the one endangering him by doing so. There was a beauty to Jinyoung’s face smushed up against the pillow with his hair fanned out against it. The pink in his cheeks gave him a delightful cuteness that was also masculine. His ears that jutted out from the sides of his head only added to his cuteness, but didn’t take too much from his masculinity either.

 

The sight both filled him with a foreign sense of tenderness and anger, that he only began to feel even more confused.

 

Why does he hold this much power over me? Why is he sleeping alone when he can sleep with me?

 

Maybe he just prefers sleeping alone, a voice in his head said, and his anger slipped away.

 

He dropped the towel on the floor and climbed into bed next to Jinyoung. He was desperate to feel Jinyoung against him, but the man was too deep in sleep, he didn’t even move when the bed dipped beside him.

 

He watched Jinyoung for a while longer, unable to bring himself to wake the man. He just laid there and watched his chest rise and fall with each breath, content with just observing and letting that tenderness in his chest play for a while. It was obvious Jinyoung needed sleep, but when his eyes travelled up to the man’s neck and he saw the marks he had made, he couldn’t stand it any longer.

 

He reached out and touch Jinyoung’s cheek, doing exactly what he wanted to do earlier. He ran the pad of his thumb up the length of his cheek, caressing it.

 

Jinyoung stirred a bit and cracked open an eye before he blinked sleepily. He wasn’t afraid, or even startled. Instead, his eyes moved quickly, hungrily over his nakedness before he lifted his arms like a child. He knew the man was half-asleep. He never would’ve gotten this reaction if Jinyoung’s brian was fully functioning. A fully awake Jinyoung would’ve recoiled from him - maybe even fled.

 

So he accepted what he could get. He lifted Jinyoung into his lap and sealed their lips together. It was so innocent and tender it knocked the breath out of him. The sweetest storm of sensations raced through his veins and crept its way to his heart with a speed that should’ve scared the shit out of him, but instead, he felt himself sighing in relief.

 

He wanted to take his time. All the other times, he had let himself fuck into Jinyoung with abandon. Now, he wanted to touch him everywhere, but when Jinyoung sat up on his knees and pulled his shirt over his head, their eyes met in the dark. Jinyoung looked like an angel and he felt fear.

 

It was all fun and games until someone loses an eye, Jackson's voice echoed in his head.

 

How… strange, he thought.

 

His heart felt alive. For the first time, his heart was beating wildly for someone other than his children and he felt a fierce need to protect. He had never felt it even with Nayeon or his mother who had begged for her life because his father believed she had cheated on him.

 

Jinyoung was simply sitting in his lap, holding his face in his hands with a delicateness that he could only describe as loving, and he felt himself crumbling rapidly. With his eyes wide open, he looked at Jinyoung, who looked like porcelain - beautiful and so fragile, and yet so strong as he lifted himself up and impaled himself on his cock.

 

He groaned, his eyes nearly shutting. “Go… slowly,” he said, concerned that Jinyoung was sore.

 

The answering gasp he got was music to his ears and so… wrenching. He wanted slow. He wanted loving. He wanted to cherish everything about Jinyoung he could get until the man walked out on him with his heart when he realized the cruel animal he truly was.

 

With everyone before Jinyoung, the peak had been everything. The cherry on top. Now, he wanted to meander. He wanted to savor every crumble of the cake.

 

As Jinyoung ground and writhed above him, teasing him… promising mindless bliss, he savored the sensation of the man’s tight ass choking his cock until he couldn’t take it anymore. With a hand around Jinyoung’s neck and another on his hip, he rolled them over. He lifted Jinyoung off the bed and plunged as deep as he could. In the dim light, he saw the love bites on his neck, beckoning him like an oasis in the middle of an endless desert he was stuck in. He moved towards it, burying his face in Jinyoung’s neck, sucking and biting on that shadow. His tongue felt the blood raced and gather in that shadow. He didn’t need to look at it to know it was darker now that just the shadow it had been. It would stand out against Jinyoung’s pale skin.

 

It was mark Jinyoung as his.

 

The thought sent him into overdrive as he rocked with an unyielding vigor. Soon he became annoyed that Jinyoung kept sliding up the bed with each of his thrust. He pulled out and flipped Jinyoung on his stomach. He thrusted back in, balls deep, groaning as heat enveloped him. He rocked three more times before he pulled Jinyoung up to a kneeling position. He fucked the man slower now, showing Jinyoung what he wanted between them. He took Jinyoung’s ear between his teeth, and tugged softly, tenderly.

 

“You’re mine, Jinyoung-ah,” he groaned, feeling Jinyoung arch against him - silently begging for more. “No one can see you like this. No one can touch you - fuck you - like I can.”

 

“No,” Jinyoung cried.

 

“That’s right, baby. Scream for me,” he said, pushing Jinyoung forward until he landed on his elbows. Words couldn’t describe the reactions he got from Jinyoung. The man didn’t try to look sexy or alluring doing so, it was all natural. It was nothing but pure danger to him and yet he found himself basking in it. He savored each slow thrust swearing it would be the last as he watched his hips bounce off Jinyoung’s perky ass.

 

Until Jinyoung clamped around him and he could do nothing, but curse at the tightness sucking him in. His body shuddered as he came closer to the edge - or maybe it was Jinyoung’s - he couldn’t tell. He was slowly losing coherence. The edge called to him and for the first time, he didn’t want to go there on his own. He wanted to take Jinyoung with him.

 

“Come, Jinyoung-ah. Let yourself go.”

 

Without warning, or any stimulation to his cock, Jinyoung came beautifully with a torturous and nearly soundless cry that he couldn’t contain, tears rolled down his cheek.

 

The violence was perfect, setting him off. As he exploded inside Jinyoung, the image of the man’s tears in his mind’s eye brought such an awe to him that he had to grip at his own hair. If he could cry, it would be for Jinyoung and in this way too, willingly and without a single regret.

 

For some odd reason, he thought of his father, his dark hands around his mother’s slender neck and how she had begged him - told him how she needed him. He had been fourteen years old when he lost his mother and learned an important lesson that he carried with always.

 

Don’t trust anyone. Ever. Especially if they said they needed you.

Chapter Text

He woke up to the sound of his alarm and half of his bed cold. Jaebum didn’t appear at breakfast and the next time he saw the man was when he was walking out to his car, cell phone in hand and intention in his stride. His gaze strayed away from his phone for a second to catch his eyes before he looked away again to get in the vehicle. Jackson was following closely behind him.

 

Anger surged through him and before he could stop himself, he pulled out his own phone and called him. He didn’t pick up the first, second, third, or fourth time, but he kept calling desperate, or probably out of his mind to show that he too could be cold and flippant when he spoke. He didn’t know.

 

Eventually, Jaebum picked up and didn’t say a word leaving him to take the stage with his pitiful play. He straightened his back and launched in, “You haven’t seen the boys since yesterday.” He wanted an explanation from Jaebum, needed it, even though it was more for himself than the kids.

 

He gave none. Instead, he chose to ignore the observation and launch into his own version of a conversation… as in giving instructions. “A new psychologist will be flying in South Korea - one I value -  to examine Youngjae today.” He paused. “I’ll send a car to pick you all up at three. Be ready.” Then the man ended the call.

 

He almost threw his phone at the wall.

 

“Even bread has to be left out to rise. Not everyone can be rushed,” Mrs. Liu said softly beside him before she turned away, walking back into the house.

 

He didn’t understand, but the wisdom in Mrs. Liu’s voice didn’t soothe him either. It only opened his eyes to admitting what was happening to him. He was falling in love with a man who took what he wanted then treated him like shit.

 

Hiding his unhappiness, he went into the house and checked on the boys.

 

Youngjae had been hesitant when he had first spoken to him about leaving the house to see the psychiatrist, but when he went on to explain that they would all be going, the child seemed more malleable to leaving the house at all. They had spent a good two hours getting ready. In the end, Youngjae and Yugyeom had decided to twin up and dress in matching black shirts, distressed jeans and a leather jacket. The only difference in their outfits were their shoes. While Youngjae chose sensible Black Phoenix loafers, Yugyeom chose a pair of black combat boots. They both looked adorable in their outfits that he found himself smiling at them proudly.

 

Promptly at three, a black Range Rover came to get them.

 

As they exited Yugyeom’s room, he reached out to ruffle Youngjae’s hair casually, earning himself an disapproving look from the child.

 

“What?” he asked casually. “You look gorgeous.”

 

Youngjae smirked tinily before going through the trouble of reaching into his jacket for his notepad. Thank you, Hyung. So do you :)

 

He laughed at the cute note. Nothing could be further from the truth. HE had dressed in a pair of blue jeans and a white button-up and denim jacket. He had done nothing with his hair since he’d gotten out of bed and he could only imagine that it looked like a chicken coop at this late in the afternoon.

 

As they passed the foyer, he wanted desperately to glance at himself in the mirror hanging on the wall, for his own self-respect, but decided it didn’t matter since he was intent on amplifying his nonchalance towards Jaebum. His only business was caring for Youngjae and Yugyeom.

 

When they got in the the Range Rover, Youngjae nudged him with his notepad. He took the notepad from the child to read the note written on it white pages.

 

Where are we going?

 

“To see your dad,” he replied, turning to the backseat to look at the child. “You haven’t seen him since yesterday, right?”

 

The light in Youngjae’s eyes dimmed as he glanced across the seat at his younger brother. The outright fear and worry in his eyes was something he couldn’t miss. Confusion filled him and he reached back to touch the child’s knee. “Youngjae,” he called gently, trying to get his attention again. “What’s wrong?”

 

He didn’t respond or write another word. They pulled up at Im Enterprise. As he stared up at the glistening skyscraper, he felt tiny bouts of panic. He knew without a doubt his casual outfit would stick out like a sore thumb. For some reason, he had stupidly assumed they would be heading to a place that was similar to the construction sight where he had his gun training.

 

The chauffeur parked right in front of the building entrance of the building and to his dismay, he noticed the sophisticatedly dressed businessmen and women coming and leaving the building in their polished oxfords and shiny heels. He winced in regret, thinking about the two suits had grabbed from his apartment on his last trip home.. Anything would’ve been better than what he was wearing. “Are we at the main office?” he asked Seungjin.

 

The chauffeur was wearing sunglasses so he couldn’t exactly reading his expression, but he noted that ever he was dressed with dignity in his pristine black suit. His insecure state of mind plunged deeper into the deep end and it was in that state that he walked into the building with the children.

 

When they entered, they were met by a young man wearing a grey suit with pink tie who introduced himself as one of Jaebum's... assistants? He wasn't sure. He was too busy feeling self-conscious amongst the flood of well dressed people.

 

They were escorted past a desk of flawlessly put-together receptionists that were granting access and exit to authorized personnel and guests, to a set of transparent elevators. From there, they were taken up to the 14th floor, where a middle-aged woman in all white guided them another set of private elevators. The security was so tight, she had to access the elevators with her fingerprint and card to open the doors.

 

When they entered, she stayed behind, offering a kind smile. “It'll take you to the top floor. Hyunjin will be there.”

 

He smiled weakly at the woman wanting to ask if Hyunjin was a male because his battered self-esteem couldn't handle another beautiful assistant who looked at him like he was taken off the streets. Thankfully, he was able to keep his mouth shut this time and ride the elevators with a somber Youngjae and antsy Yugyeom.

 

Wincing, he was pulled out of his thoughts as he stared down at his hand holding Youngjae's. It seemed as if with every floor they passed, the grip the child had around his tightened more and more, while Yugyeom’s only loosened.

 

His eyes caught on the logo of Jaebum's dynasty embedded into the elevator floor. He couldn't even fathom the man's net worth. He could barely even believe Jaebum was the same man who had fucked him into delirium. The very same man he had teased, fucked and even slapped.

 

Now as he soaked in reality, it made sense as to how he can easily be ignored and toyed with. Jaebum was bigger than him, not just in height, but worth. He was just a nanny. Hired help. Of course, he had a place in the man's life, but it was becoming more and more clear that if he moved even an inch in the tiny space he was given, he would only end up getting hurt. Instinctively, he had known this, but he had let himself forget.

 

Not anymore.

 

Eventually they got to the top floor, Hyunjin, who to his slight relief was male, met them as planned. He pretended to be comforted that the man was way younger than both himself and Jaebum, but the truth was, he was insanely jealous and he couldn't decide whether he liked Jaebum working so closely with Hyunjin. As he thought about it more, he didn't know which sex he was more insecure of.

 

“Mr. Park,” Hyunjin greeted with a soft smile before he crouched down low to meet both the children's height. “Youngjae-ah, Yugyeom-ah, 안녕. 잘지냈어?”

 

Yugyeom nodded enthusiastically with a gleeful grin. Youngjae - he saw - stared at the man with eyes that were haunted and almost maelstrom.

 

Hyunjin frowned. “영재, 괜찮아? 왜 그래?”

 

Youngjae simply shrugged and Hyunjin turned to him. He shrugged as well, just as baffled by Youngjae's behavior. “He's been like that since we got in the car.”

 

Hyunjin nodded, as if understanding. “He's probably anxious about meeting the new psychologist. He's been through a couple of them in a short amount of time. Plus, he hasn't been out of the compound of the mansion in a while. In fact, I'm actually surprised he's here at all.”

 

“Maybe,” he replied, shrugging again.

 

Voices began to draw nearer and they looked up to find Jaebum, dressed in only his white shirt and navy blue dress pants. He had loosened his tie and the two men he was talking to were dressed even more casually in jeans and t-shirt. Jaebum noticed them immediately, but he kept his attention on the two men as they spoke in hushed tones. A minute passed and the men shook Jaebum’s hand and walked away. Jaebum ducked into a nearby door and the two men came towards them. As they passed, the two men nodded at the kids and, Youngjae cowered closer to him as if trying to mold himself to his side.

 

The moment the doors shut close, Youngjae began to cry softly.

 

“Hey,” he said, crouching down in front of Youngjae.

 

Youngjae sprang at him, flinging his tiny arms around his neck and held on tightly so that he had no choice but to lift him. He took Yugyeom's hand in his.

 

“I’ll show you to the waiting room,” Hyunjin said to him over Youngjae’s shoulder.

 

He nodded, following after the assistant, even more confused by what was going on.

Chapter Text

Jackson was waiting for him in his office, and the moment he returned, the man noted his mood. Naturally, being Jackson he didn’t say a word immediately. The man waited until he was seated and scrolling through the coroner’s report he had just received.

 

“What’s going on with you?”

 

He rubbed the back of his neck. What can I tell you? he wondered. Jinyoung is here so all I want to do is bring him in here and fuck him. Instead, he muttered a lame, “Nothing.”

 

“You’re lying to me.”

 

“I just want to be with all this shit as soon as possible,” he said standing up to stand by the floor to ceiling windows and look out.

 

Actually, he didn’t know why he had Jinyoung brought here. This was his space. He had built this - not his father. He had inherited the family construction branch and built his own dynasty out of the corrupt money laundering shell his father had ran. A single job that cost half a million was booked at two million and everyone would be happy - the banks, the contractors, the buyers, the sellers, all of them. The one that really lucked out was the tax man.

 

If he was really being honest, he wanted to impress Jinyoung. Thus far, the man had only seen the construction yard, and what he had seen the look of pure fear on Jinyoung's face. He wanted to show Jinyoung what the rest of the world saw and hopefully reverse the image of himself in Jinyoung's mind. Instead, Jinyoung made no effort to look around the place in awe as most people did.

 

He scoffed mirthlessly. Looks like I'm not above trying to impress Jinyoung.

 

He smirked slightly as he thought about the man's reaction. Jinyoung looked awkward in his modern glass and steel office in his jeans, t-shirt and denim jacket, but to him, he looked perfect. A sight that could make a blind man see again. He had wanted to linger, even just for a minute. He wanted to move closer to the man, talking to him, but he was testing himself.

 

He wanted to see how long he could stay away, but who was he kidding? He had missed the man mere minutes after leaving his bed.

 

He shook his head, rolling the events of the morning around. He had deliberately pissed Jinyoung off. He knew that if the man even gave him one pleading look, he would never be able to leave the house, and any more of Jinyoung was dangerous. He would be at risk of losing himself in the man. He already knew that he could fall irreparably in love with Jinyoung.

 

Hyunjin gave a soft rap on the door and came in. “Yugyeom decided to follow Tzuyu to the kitchen to prepare refreshments and Youngjae is in with Dr. Bae. Where should I put Mr. Park while he waits for the boys?”

 

It took everything in him not to look at Jackson, who he knew without a doubt was watching him carefully. “Bring him in here,” he answered before going back to his desk to try and focus on the report.

 

Jackson stood, a deep rumbling chuckled bubbling up from his throat and he closed his eyes, biting back a curse.

 

“Who exactly fucked who?” Jackson asked, not bothering to cover the mirth in his tone.

 

Annoyed at both himself and Jackson, he reacted horribly to the teasing. He threw the first thing his hand connected with at the blonde, which was a paper weight. The glass material was heavy, but just as expected, Jackson leaned away from its line of flight without breaking a sweat, and the thing went right past him, hitting Hyunjin instead. The paper weight missed Hyunjin's right eye, slamming into his forehead and knocking him out cold.

 

Shocked, he stood up immediately, walking around his desk to check on his assistant. Shit!!  “Are you okay?”

 

Jackson got to him first, helping him up off the floor.

 

In spite of the blood dripping from his busted forehead, Hyunjin forced a pained smile and nodded his head. “I’m fine, sir,” he said, as he staggered out the door.

 

Jackson shot him a cold look before shaking his stupid head, and leaving.

 

Frustrated beyond repair, he fell back into his chair, pulled off his tie completely and ran a hand through his hair. Fuck! What a fuck up I’m making of all this.

 

A short while later, Hyunjin came back with a tray of drinks and his forehead bandaged. “Mr. Park insists on waiting downstairs in the lobby,” he said.

 

He completely lost it. “Get him the fuck in here right now!” he roared.

 

A look of pure panic crossed Hyunjin’s face before he hurriedly left the room. He pushed away the report on his desk and glued his eyes to the door. He knew he was acting like madman, but he couldn’t help it. Where Jinyoung was concerned he felt easily butt hurt.

 

When the door opened a short while later, Hyunjin knew better than to come in. Jinyoung walked in and the door shut behind him immediately. The man stared directly at him without fear or caution in his eyes.

 

“Why did you want to wait downstairs?” he asked.

 

The man had the audacity to shrug in lieu of actually responding.

 

“Answer me when I fucking talk to you,” he gritted out, watching his face closely.

 

“Is there a good reason why you’re speaking to me like this?” Jinyoung asked quietly.

 

He sighed, defeated before he even began. “Sit,” he commanded, pointing towards the chair across his desk. He needed a barrier between them lest he forget himself even more.

 

“Thanks, but I think I better wait downstairs,” Jinyoung said, pointing behind him at the door.

 

He glared at the man with as must intensity as he could muster, but Jinyoung paid him in kind, glaring right back at him. Nothing passed between them for a minute before Jinyoung turned away to walk out the door.

 

He was out of his seat and crossing the room in long furious strides before the man had a chance to even reach the doorknob. He gripped Jinyoung’s arm and pinned him to the door. He was close enough to breath in his sweet scent and hear the sharp inhale and heavy exhale being expelled from Jinyoung. Both were like an aphrodisiac to him, intoxicatingly so.

 

He didn’t have to look into Jinyoung’s eyes to know the man was silently mocking his lack of self-control in his presence. “You’re very violent, Jaebum,” he said softly. “Harrassing me seems to come as second nature to you.”

 

“And you’re very flippant, Jinyoung,” he shot back. “Disrespecting me seems to come just as easily to you.”

 

It was clear neither one of them wanted to back down.

 

So they met the only way they could and in the way that didn’t need any reasoning. Jinyoung reached for him with his lips as he went after the man with all he had. Jinyoung’s unique flavor registered in his head and his entire being came to life with crazed lust.

 

I really am an addict. I’m not sane unless I’m fucking the stupid man.

 

He was achingly hard in two seconds flat, devouring Jinyoung’s mouth he had been starving for since he had left the house that morning.

 

Neither of them said a word but none needed to be spoken anyway. The need, anger, frustration, and confusion about what the hell was happening between them was all evident in the way they tried to consume one another. In one moment, his hands were on Jinyoung’s face to hold him in place and the next, they were at his shoulders trying to peel away the man’s jacket. His lips were on the man’s neck one moment, and on his nipple. Jinyoung was grounding his hips into his cock and he cursed at his choice of outfit as the material dragged against his cock painfully.

 

“Wear less clothing,” he spat out.

 

Jinyoung gripped his shirt in fury forcing him to stop and look at the man. “Stop telling me what to fucking do.”

 

“I’m your boss,” he reminded.

 

“Not at the damn moment, you’re not,” Jinyoung said, smiling devilishly.

 

“We’ll see about that,” he growled as he simultaneously yanked at the man’s boxers and pants down until it came to mid thigh. “Jump,” he said and Jinyoung obeyed, instantly wrapping his legs around his waist. He reached between them, salivating as he found Jinyoung’s cock hard and at the ready. He grasp the man's cock and he groaned in his ear. With the other hand, he reached into his back pocket and pulled a packet of lube, lathering his finger in the substance.

 

He was two fingers in when the door that connected his office to boardroom swung open.

 

Jinyoung gasped, his eyes widening in shock and he instantly moved to cover Jinyoung from whoever sight it was that came into his office unannounced, slamming his hips into Jinyoung’s. He turned his head to meet Jackson's amused brown ones.

 

I'm going to start fucking hating him soon if he continues on like this. On second thought, I'm going to fucking kill him. “Get the fuck out,” he roared.

 

Jackson continued as if he had found him sipping tea on sunny Saturday afternoon, heading towards his desk to get his phone.

 

He narrowed his eyes at the man, clenching his jaw. He never forgets anything. He knew instantly that Jackson had left his phone purposefully.

 

“Dr. Bae is on her way back with Youngjae,” he said casually in Korean as he walked back out the room. “Keep your voices down.” He shut the door behind him.

 

I'm going to fucking kill him with my bare hands and enjoy every fucking minute of it. Turning back to Jinyoung, he found the man's face buried in his chest. He waited until Jinyoung finally had the courage to looked back up. His heart melted at the sight of Jinyoung's ears a beautiful shade of red and his breath caught when he saw the rosy pink of his cheeks.

 

“We have ten minutes,” he said.

 

Jinyoung looked at him waveringly. He took away his decision by grasping the man's thigh and wiggling his fingers, brushing against that sweet spot he didn't even have to look for anymore, earning himself a delicious moan. He slipped his fingers free and made quick work of his zipper, yanking the thing down.

 

His cock sprang out and Jinyoung gasped, reaching out to stroke him. “How are you so fucking big?”

 

His eyes widened in shock. It was the first time Jinyoung spoke anything even slightly provocative to him and he wasn't about to complain. “How are you so fucking sweet?” he mused.

 

The smile that spread across Jinyoung’s face was deliciously erotic. There was no point fighting it. He just completely surrendered to Jinyoung without a struggle as he slammed home. The last thing he could remember clearly before the haze of lust took over was Jinyoung grabbing him by the shoulder, urging him on, and the thought that this moment- just him and Jinyoung connected in the most intimate way possible - was priceless.

 

To be able to feeling Jinyoung naked against him was… he felt himself shudder that the thought that crossed his mind.

 

Blissful.

 

They both reached their end in less than ten minutes.

Chapter Text

He sensed Jaebum’s presence the moment he came into the kitchen.

 

It was past midnight, and the entire household was already asleep, or so he thought. A craving for some chamomile tea he was slowly getting an addiction for had brought him downstairs for a drink.

 

Jaebum made no noise as he came into the kitchen, and his heart felt as if it was pounding loud enough for Jaebum to hear from the other end of the house. Intent on ignoring the man, he set out on making his tea. The kettle began to whistle quietly and he turned the stove off. He was reaching into the cupboard on the top of his toes when Jaebum came up behind him closing the space between them to get the cup for him.

 

His back was pressed to the man's hard chest and he froze. It was so simple and yet, so intimate. Jaebum's warmth seemed to radiate from his body and deep into his. The scent of his aftershave or cologne seemed to not just fill his nostrils, but his his head. It was intoxicating, like he'd took a shot of whiskey too fast and too much. His chest began to hurt.

 

He tried to pull himself from his frozen state by blinking a couple of times as Jaebum set the cup on the counter and turned to leave. The man was almost at the door when he asked, “Would you like a cup of tea?”

 

He hadn't turned on all the lights when he came in and the only light in the room was coming from the stove vent. Jaebum’s dark brown eyes glittered in their dimness and for a second he forgot how to breathe until the man spoke.

 

“I don't drink tea.”

 

He bowed his head, needing to look away before he let the man see his disappointment. It was a rejection, if he ever heard one. All we do is fuck. What was I expecting? He nodded politely, turning away to tend to his tea again. It's not a problem, he tried to shrug off, at least he's consistent and doesn't give me false hope.

 

Wrong!

 

“I’d love a cup of coffee though,” Jaebum said suddenly.

 

Thankfully, his back was to the man because his heart began to race, beating erratically and skipping a couple of beats off tune. The muscles of his face broke into a grin as wide as they could stretch when he heard a chair scrape against the linoleum tiles.

 

He didn't turn back until he had his tea and Jaebum's coffee ready. When he was done, he took both drinks and set the coffee in front of Jaebum.

 

“Thank you,” the man said, sending him a tiny grateful, yet weary smile. He took a sip and sighed contentedly. “This is really good,” he said, turning the cup around as if a recipe were written on it like a can of soda.

 

He smiled in return. “You're welcome, and thank you.”

 

They fell into a comfortable silence for a moment, both sipping on their hot beverages and lost in their thoughts.

 

“How was Youngjae today after seeing Dr. Bae?”

 

“He seemed relieved. I could be wrong, but I think he's hiding something.”

 

Jaebum frowned, looking up at him. “What do you mean?”

 

“I don't have any concrete evidence, but I got the feeling he was scared to meet Dr. Bae. Like he was afraid she would break through him and he would reveal whatever it is he's hiding.”

 

Jaebum sat back in his chair with a heavy sigh, flowering darkly. “What could he possibly be afraid of or hiding?”

 

He shook his head, frowning. “No idea, but maybe maybe if I get him to trust me enough, he'll tell me.”

 

“I'm a shit father,” Jaebum said, hanging his head. “We were happy once… before the company became stable and Nayeon’s career really took off - when things were much simpler.” The man looked up and around the kitchen. “We were much happier too when we first moved into this house.”

 

“What happened?”

 

“Life,” he responded simply at first. “I got busier, trying to keep up, and then ahead in the business world. Nayeon started going on year-round long tours, travelling around the world.

 

Before I knew it, we were leaving Youngjae with nannies more often than not. I thought things would change when she got pregnant with Yugyeom, but it didn't. We argued about her retiring from the music industry, and after a year and a half on hiatus, she rolled back into it. I stayed home with the boys as much as I could. If anything, it got worse. Her label began to demand more of her time. No one likes to see their idol happily married. Then… she was gone… and the company suffered under the suspicion of her death. And Youngjae…” He broke off, blinking rapidly.

 

“Anyways,” he said after a moment. “You're doing a great job so far with him. Thank you.”

 

He'd never heard Jaebum sound so sincere in his praise regarding his work, and a part of him was pleased the man took notice, flushing with pride. “You're welcome.”

 

“Is this yours?” he asked, pointing at a sketchbook on the table between them.

 

He nodded.

 

“You sketch?” he asked, picking it up and flipping through it.

 

“I'm learning. It's a hobby,” he replied. “I mentioned it in my resume.”

 

“Hmm,” Jaebum responded.

 

It didn’t take more than that to mean Jaebum had just glossed over his resume. It made no sense, but he felt slightly hurt by it.

 

God, I’ve become so sensitive. What was I expecting? That my billionaire boss would be interested in my hobbies?

 

“Why sketching?” he asked, seeming to genuinely be curious now.

 

“During my graduating year in university, I saw Da Vinci’s sketches of what he called The Flying Machine -  what we all the helicopter now. Creating beautiful things makes me happy. I didn’t…” he hesitated for a moment before he continued. “I didn’t have much growing up, so maybe that’s why I appreciate more than most, beautiful things and places. Like this place. It’s incredible.”

 

“So you’re happy?” Jaebum asked, never looking away from him as he took another sip of his coffee.

 

He didn’t back down. “I’m not sad.”

 

The man nodded as he gulped the last of his coffee.

 

Would you like another? he wanted to ask, but he kept his mouth shut. It was clear Jaebum was leaving soon and he needed to prepare for the lost he would no doubt feel. His heart wanted so desperately for Jaebum to ask him more.

 

Jaebum stood, and another question popped up in his head. “What about you? What makes you happy?”

 

“I don’t know what that means,” Jaebum replied slowly. “I do know that I’m not sad, and that’s simply because I’m not dead - and neither are my kids or Jackson. As much as I hate the bastard for the shit he does at times.”

 

He blushed furiously, remembering how Jackson had walked in on them before he snapped his gaze back up at Jaebum in astonishment. He’s a billionaire. He has a life most people can only dream of having, a body that can make a heart melt… and all he’s grateful for is that he, his kids and his best friend are still alive? Jesus! Thank God I’m poor.

 

Jaebum rolled his head back, stretching his arms out and he watched as the hair at the nape of his neck touch his collar. He thought about the times he had ran his hands through those locks. It was perfectly beautiful and so wildly sexy, but he wanted to hold the man back from leaving, even if it was just for a few more minutes.

 

“You need a haircut,” he said.

 

“What I need is to fuck you,” Jaebum replied flatly.

 

Laughter he didn’t expect bubbled up past his lips.

 

Jaebum’s face split into a grin that made his heart swell with so much unexplained emotion. “But you were just about to leave.”

 

“I am exhausted,” Jaebum confessed. “I came home barely an hour ago. It’s been a long day. I would probably have found my way to your room later.” He looked down at himself. “God, I’m already so fucking hard thinking about it.”

 

“Why don’t I do your hair? Then while I wash it, you an fuck me however you want. That should be a get you tired enough to go to sleep right after.”

 

“More like a restless night… My dick is fucking insatiable when it comes to you.” Jaebum eyed him for a moment. “You sure you can handle it? The last person that cut my hair was shot to death.”

 

All the amusement he felt drained away. “Why? Because they did a horrible job? Please tell me you’re joking.”

 

“I’m not,” Jaebum said, shaking his head as he grimaced. “But it was for a reason way less sensible than giving me a bad haircut would have been.”

 

He gaped at the man.

 

“The good news is that I didn’t do the killing, so you’re safe no matter how the haircut goes.”

 

He closed his eyes and shut his mouth as he shook his head. “You have a really dark sense of humor.”

 

“I know,” Jaebum said, scratching the nape of his neck again. “It's sick, but it's the only way I've been able to survive.” His eyes narrowed, nearly disappearing adorably behind his lids. “I'm going to teach how to use a gun while you cut my hair.”

 

He was on his way to the sink to put the cups in, but he stopped and turned to look at the man, his eyes going wide with shock.

 

“No discussions. It's more for my peace of mind than your safety. I will make damn sure you never have to use one though.”

 

He couldn't argue with the man’s logic so he nodded, continuing on his way. He was already in dangerous waters. It would be better to learn how to defend himself, in case he ever needed to protect himself and the children. Tonight he'll learn to shoot.

 

Jaebum moved slightly and the light fell on him, illuminating him more. He really did look tired. There were dark circles around his eyes and his cheeks were slightly hollowed. The tiredness was practically etched into his face.

 

His heart softened on its own accord. “I’ll be there,” he whispered.

Chapter Text

He knew more than he wished to know about Jinyoung, but instead of being bored, he wanted to know more. He  wanted to know how he become a caregiver, about his best friend Mark, and the sister he had that lived in New York, but he never spoke to. He wanted to know the kind of food he loved to eat. He had passed by a bakery with all sorts of pastries being displayed at the windows and he wondered what kind of goodies Jinyoung liked most.

 

Does he prefer winter or summer? What other things did he love that didn’t involve guns and death?

 

There was no chair in his bathroom, so he carried one of the stools from the mini bar in his bedroom into the bathroom, making a mental note to get one in there soon. He set it in front of the massive bathroom mirror while Jinyoung stood aside waiting with a pair of scissors.

 

Usually, he was wary of people around him holding anything dangerous around him, but with Jinyoung he found himself easily relaxing into the stool, even closing his eyes. He listened to his quiet, easy breathing as he basked in his scent.

 

"Aren't you scared I'll mess up your hair?" Jinyoung teased as he snipped away.

 

He smiled. "If it turns out horrible, I'll just shave it all off."

 

Jinyoung stopped and he opened his eyes to look at the man, who stared back at him in the mirror. His dark eyes were wide with shock and he chuckled. His heart quickened. "It's just hair," he said softly, trying to sound reassuring. "There are worse things to worry about."

 

They were silent for a second before Jinyoung picked up where he left off with a shrug.

 

He reached behind and pulled Jinyoung in front by the belt loop of his jeans.

 

"야!" Jinyoung screeched, but he ignored it grabbing a palm-full of his bubbly ass. He nudged the man's shirt up with his nose, nipping softly at his skin and marvelling at the way it quivered under his lips until he was able to wrap his lips around a rosy nipple.

 

It didn't take Jinyoung long to bury his fingers in his hair. Before Jinyoung could even attempt moving him away, he was on his knees with his head buried between his thighs, working on unbuttoning his jeans with his mouth.

 

When he peeled away the material away, he growled. So the little minx came commando to my room, he thought wrapping his lips around Jinyoung's cock.

 

Jinyoung shuddered at the contact, gripping at his shoulders to steady himself. "Jaebum," he cried, "I'm not done."

 

He pulled away only long enough to growl at the man a quick, "You can finish later," before he sucked the man in again. This time harder, hollowing his cheeks.

 

In time, the shears in Jinyoung's hand fell to the floor to join the tiny pieces of hair. Only then did he rise on his feet, lifting Jinyoung in his arms as he went. He carried Jinyoung into the shower stall where the man practically ripped at his own clothing before working on his own, unable to control himself. Jinyoung crushed their lips together hungrily as his hands tugged at his pants and when they fell to the floor, so did he.

 

Soft, swollen lips sucked his cock in and his knees nearly gave out with relief. His palm fell against the wall, holding on as shivers ran up his spine. He looked down and gasped softly as he watched Jinyoung tongue lap at his hard cock, worshipping it. His pink tongue slid down his shaft, kissing and licking at the thick blue veins wrapped around it. He thought he was far gone, until Jinyoung slid further down and took one of his balls in his mouth.

 

Fuck, he groaned, fighting to control his breathing. This man would consume him. He was so close and yet, he needed more of this. More of Jinyoung's need. More of his greed . All the blood left his brain as he came hard, hot jets of cum shooting down Jinyoung's throat.

 

He groaned, pulling Jinyoung up against his chest, crushing their lips together roughly, needing to feel the man as close as possible. He held Jinyoung desperately as he drank him in. In that moment, they were one. Jinyoung tasted like him and vice versa. He tried to focus on getting them both cleaned until he couldn't anymore and before he knew it, Jinyoung was in his arms again and they were exiting the shower.

 

He tossed Jinyoung on the bed and the man looked at him with wild eyes. He zeroed in on his hardening cock.

 

"I can never fucking control myself around you. If I'm not buried balls deep in you, my mind goes fucking wild and it seems like I have the same effect on you, but why is that? What are you doing to me, Jinyoung-ah?"

 

Jinyoung frowned at him, opening his mouth to speak.

 

He dove back in, not wanting to hear the answer. Jinyoung gasped under him, sending tingly sparks down his back.

 

He didn't need an answer. He already knew the answer.

 

More than an hour later of mind-blowing sex, they collapsed against each other, exhausted and spent. He was close to passing out. He'd had Jinyoung in more positions than he can name, and now Jinyoung had his legs on his shoulder. He can smell the cum still leaking weakly out the tip of his cock. He was so tired his eyes were half shut, but he still lured in by the scent of the man. He leaned forward and wrapped his lips around Jinyoung's softened cock.

 

The man pushed at his head, moaning weakly, "No more, Jaebummie. Please, no more."

 

He didn't listen until Jinyoung gave him one last weak orgasm. Only then was he satisfied.

Chapter Text

The panic set in slowly, but with a power that shook him.

 

Jaebum was asleep and no longer available to him. The tremors of extreme sexual satisfaction had barely stopped crashing into him when clarity of the situation hit him… hard. All he was left with was the panic of knowing there was no turning back from where he was currently. From day one, he had known his attraction to Jaebum was dangerous. It had set a fire in him and he thought he could control it, but he had been sorely wrong. Now, it was just growing and growing into a wildfire - out of control and consuming him completely.

 

He wanted to run.

 

Attachment was something he feared the most - mainly because everyone eventually left, and people like Jaebum were the worst kind. They had their hell to deal with. They took what they wanted and left other choking in their wake.

 

Walls are what kept him safe… walls are what kept him sane.

 

He was falling, fast and hard for the man, spiralling deeper and deeper into the man's dangerous world. It was a bad sign that he wanted to bare all to the man.

 

He needed to run.

 

But the more insane part of him didn't want to leave. In Jaebum's arms, he felt safe. He felt at home… or at least what he thought felt like home - warm, safe, and full of love. But there was no warmth, nor safety, nor… love.

 

Tears filled his eyes as he looked at Jaebum fast asleep and looking peaceful. Falling asleep beside Jaebum would be breaking another rule.

 

Jaebum was dead asleep, but he still moved and miniscule as possible. Try as he might, he tried to escape, but Jaebum was impossible to move. His one arm draped across his abdomen pinned him in place. He tried to wrench away, but Jaebum came awake.

 

He didn't fully wake up, just enough to ask him where he was going.

 

"I need the bathroom," he replied.

 

Jaebum simply yawned, muttered incoherently in agreement before giving him enough room to get out of bed.

 

Once he was free, he stood on wobbly legs and picked up his clothes. He closed the bedroom door and began to pull his clothes back on before he walked through the reception room and to the elevator.

 

Hopefully, Jaebum assumed he left before dawn and wouldn't think anything of it.

 

Either way it wouldn't bother the man, but he needed to run. He needed to protect himself.

 

No one else would.

Chapter Text

"You ran away?" Mark squeaked.

 

He whirled on his friend in the middle of the grocery store. "I did not run away," he debunked, turning back around. "I walked… back to my room."

 

"What about his hair?"

 

"He must've called a stylist to come in the next morning because it looked pretty good when he met the boys at breakfast."

 

Mark nodded his head disbelievingly before he looked into their shared cart. "Okay," he said, grabbing a bag of frozen dumplings out and returning it back to the refrigerator it just came from

 

"Hey!"

 

"What? I have enough problems of my own to point out yours."

 

"That's not what I meant. I mean…," He took a deep breath, suddenly annoyed at his inability to speak properly. "I mean, why are you putting the food back?"

 

"I need to take a break."

 

"A break? From dumplings? What do you mean? You're obsessed with them."

 

"Well, I need a break from them."

 

He looked into the cart and noticed a lot of things he had put in it had gone missing too. "Wait. Where are my chicken wings?"

 

"I put them back too. We still have some drumsticks from the last time we went shopping."

 

"What? Mark! I want my chicken wings," he said, slightly whining.

 

Mark gave him a dry look as if he were dealing with a toddler. "They taste the same."

 

He looked back into the cart. "Where are the rice cakes? Oh my God, and the umeboshi? Mark!"

 

"I don't need all those," he said.

 

He searched through the cart quickly before he looked at his best friend with suspicious eyes. "Mark," he said slowly.

 

He sighed. "I'm broke, okay. Until things get better, I have to... economize."

 

"You're broke? What do you…" Things began to fall into place. "Explain."

 

"I had an unexpected expense and I quit my job," Mark said shortly.

 

His eyes went widen with confusion. "What? When? Why didn't you tell me?"

 

"You were dealing with some stuff and I didn't want to burden you-… Okay. It happened when the boys came over."

 

"What was it?"

 

"My boss was a bitch. Nothing I ever did was right. Why is Minho awake this early? What us he up so late? Don't you think that portion is too big for him? Don't you think he looks cheap in those clothes? Like you bought the dn clothes, you idiot!" he practically yelled in the middle of the aisles. He took a deep breath before continuing. "In the end, I just wanted to poison his dumbass."

 

"Oh. I'm sorry," he said, not really knowing what to say otherwise.

 

"I'm very jealous of you right now if I'm being honest," he said with a slightly bitter smile. "At least yours is fucking you back to life."

 

"There's not much beyond that to envy actually. If I fall for him, I'm screwed, and not in the biblical sense."

 

"What if he falls for you too?" Mark asked.

 

He stopped in his tracks. Falls for me too? Is it even possible? Not even in my wildest dreams.

 

Mark's lips stretched into a mischievous smile. "You didn't think about that one, did you?"

 

He shook his head to clear the thoughts away. "Impossible," he muttered, beginning to walk again.

 

"Okay," Mark said, pushing the cart past him.

 

He rolled his eyes before running after the elder. "No, seriously, Mark. Jaebum is like, a super successful billionaire. He could have anyone. He would never fall in love with me. I'm a nobody. You've met him. You know what he's like. Men like that are hard and cold." He paused for thought. "They're beyond salvation."

 

Mark stopped and turned to him, staring at him with wide eyes filled with concern. "So he's dead to you - is what you're saying?"

 

He frowned in confusion. "Wh-what do you mean?"

 

Mark's eyes lit up with amusement before turned back around and grabbed a sack of potatoes and continued on.

 

The mockery took some time to registered and when it did, he wanted to smack himself. "He's too dangerous, Mark."

 

"Okay, then get out of his house."

 

"Tried that, remember? It didn't work."

 

Mark stopped abruptly and he nearly crashed into him. "So you're his hostage. Do I need to call the cops?"

 

"This isn't funny, Mark."

 

Mark smiled apologetically at him. "I know. I'm sorry, but it's high time you let those walls down and let someone in. You've had them forever. I'm still surprised I found a crack to wiggle through."

 

"You're skinny enough to fit in the tiniest of holes," he said, throwing an arm over Mark's shoulder. "No pun intended."

 

"None taken," the elder said, rolling his eyes. "Just make one for Jaebum," he added.

 

"No," he immediately replied, pulling away. "He's not asking for one, and the last thing I need is a heartbreak in my repertoire."

 

"Come on. What do you have to lose?"

 

What do I have to lose? "My sanity," he said with the tiniest of hesitation.

 

"It would probably do you some good if you lost a little of it for once. You overthink every goddamn thing. It took you over a month to decide to move in with me. My God!"

 

He shuffled his feet in embarrassment. "It was a big decision! I was afraid of ruining a good thing."

 

"And all your fears were baseless."

 

He sighed. "I have enough problems as it is. My life is already complicated. I don't need to turn my affair with my boss into a horrible heartbreak."

 

"I just don't understand how him owning half of New York City is something to consider," Mark said under his breath.

 

He heard it, and wanted the elder to repeat it. "What was that?" he asked, arching a brow.

 

"Nothing," Mark squeaked, walking away.

 

"Gold-digger," he spat.

 

"Self-righteous prick," Mark returned with just as much fervor.

 

He held Mark in headlock for a second before he loosened it. "Enough about Jaebum. You said you had an unexpected expense. What was it?"

 

Mark was silent for a while, then he spilled all. "My mom. She needed some money."

 

"Oh, Mark."

 

"It's okay.  She's okay now. Sometimes it's hard for her to manage her measly pension, you know. When things break down, it's like the end of the world, and I can't tell her no."

 

"Hey, do you need cash?"

 

"Nah, it's okay. I already got a job lined up," Mark said, shaking his head adamantly before he crinkled his nose "It's out in Hartford though."

 

"Hartford?" he wailed.

 

"It's only a two and a half hour train ride away," the elder said grinning.

 

"Right."

 

"I'll be taking care of a little boy name Hyunjin. I spoke to the mother and I really hope I'm not exchanging one bitch for another because I'm desperate."

 

"If you don't want to do it, I can…-"

 

"No," Mark said, cutting of before he could even complete his sentence. "I can do this on my own. I can't pull the despair card yet. I want to do this on my own. If be more proud of myself if I did."

 

"You're crazy, you know."

 

"I know," Mark replied, looking sheepishly at him. "Will you come visit me in Hartford once in a while? I think I'm going to be living in some kind of mausoleum."

 

"That's morbid. You know I'm scared of ghosts."

 

Mark gasped, stopping in his tracks. "You said that just to put me off, didn't you?"

 

He began to laugh and Mark join him.

 

"You know, if you want, you can ask a certain billionaire to buy you a castle without ghost…"

 

"Stop fucking going there."

 

Mark put his hands up in defeat, laughing. "Okay! Okay, I get it. You can't stand to owe anyone and all that. I understand, but you do owe me, so buy me Louie G's tonight and I'll call it even."

 

"You're the one who wouldn't stop pestering me. Why do you want pizza? What about all this food?"

 

"Are you cooking? 'Cause I'm fucking exhausted."

 

"Fine," he sighed exasperatedly, rolling his eyes. At times he wondered where Mark tucked all the food he ate in his thin frame.

 

"You should order it now. That way, it'll get there when we do."

 

"Your wishes is my command, Your Highness," he said sarcastically, pulling out his phone.

 

He was just about to hit the call button when a call from Tzuyu came in.

 

"Jinyoung-ssi?"

 

"Tzuyu," he answered, instantly concerned. "Is everything alright?"

 

"Everything is fine, but Mr. Im just sent an order. He's coming in from Atlanta today, and he wants you to accompany him to an event."

 

For a few seconds, he stood there in the middle of the aisles unable to think, let alone speak before he gathered himself. "An event?"

 

"I was given specific instructions on the event, just to receive the array of outfits chosen for you to choose from and to ensure you were ready by seven."

 

He took a deep breathe. "Alright. I'll be back in an hour."

 

"Thank you."

 

He mumbled a reply before he ended the call.

 

Mark was leaning against the cart, looking at him when he looked up from his phone. "Why is your face like that?"

 

His heart was galloping wildly like racehorse running a derby. "Jaebum just requested I join him for an event tonight."

 

Mark took a moment to think it over. "Isn't it a good thing?"

 

"He left early yesterday morning and never mentioned it."

 

"Well… I don't really know what to think. Maybe he just misses you."

 

"He could've just called me directly instead of having his assistant call me. Since he left yesterday, he hasn't even called to check in on the kids."

 

"I am officially confused by you two," Mark said, shaking his head. "Either way, attend the event with him."

 

He opened his mouth to say something, but Mark cut him off with a raised palm. "Don't interrupt me. Attend the event and see what comes of it."

 

"Are you done?" he asked. When Mark nodded his head, he asked the first thing that came to mind, "Why should I? Attending events isn't in my job description."

 

"And sleeping with him is?" Mark asked, raising a brow. "Look, whatever this event is, it's high profile. Which means: he isn't ashamed to be seen with you out in public and that amazes me - not that you're ugly or whatever because you're not - but he's a billionaire and you're an average Joe, or Jinyoung," he said smirking slightly. "Think, Jinyoungie. He could've called anyone, but he didn't. He called for you."

 

"Mark…"

 

"I don't want to hear it. Go. Give this a chance. Let's figure out what he's up to. For now though, you still owe me pizza."

 

He called Louie G's and ordered their largest deep dish pizza with a whole pile of sides for Mark because he was right. If he defied Jaebum, it would only end up worst for him, or both of them, but if he didnt, he figured he would be benefiting from going as well.

Chapter Text

Four perfectly tailored suits in his size were laid on his bed for him.

 

A blue, Ermenegildo Zegna tonal plaid, two-piece wool suit; a charcoal Tom Ford Windsor sharkskin base three-piece; a blue Kiton Ombre Plaid two-piece and a dark blue Giorgio Armani micro-textured two-piece tux - all ranging between three- to seven-thousand grand in price.

 

He stared at them, still confused about what exactly was going on. He heard movement behind him and turned to see Tzuyu walk in with Joy. They laid four pairs of shoes at the foot of the bed before they straightened up to meet his bewildered gaze.

 

A wave of guilty and shame filled him.

 

What the fuck is he doing? Doesn't he know that by doing this, he's exposing our relationship, not just to the world, but to the house staff too?

 

The bitter look on Joy's face only served to solidify his thoughts. It was toxic, to say the least. She had been a friend when he had first arrived at the mansion, and now, she was glaring at him.

 

"You have an hour to turn yourself into a prince," Tzuyu said, smiling sweetly.

 

The simple statement and gesture allowed him to breath just a tad easier.

 

Until Joy chirped in, her tongue ready to do damage. ""It makes sense now why he fired everyone when you left, then rehired everyone when you came back. It had nothing to do with the children, did it?"

 

Tzuyu ignored her. "Do you need help with your hair, or makeup? There's an excellent service he suggested…"

 

"No, it's fine, Tzuyu," he said to her. "I'm not going. I don't really understand why he wants me to go with him."

 

Joy snorted in disgust. "Snake," she huffed before stomping out the room.

 

Anger surged through him like spitfire speed as he watched Joy leave the room.

 

"Don't mind her. She's jealous," Tzuyu said, touching his hand.

 

"But that's it! There's nothing to be jealous about," he said, almost feeling sorry for himself.

 

Tzuyu smiled albeit sadly, patting his hand before she left the room as well.

 

Still fuming, he immediately pulled out his phone and called Jaebum. He didn't pick up, but eventually, after the third time, he did, and by then, he was beyond livid. "I'm not going," he said icily.

 

Silence greeted him before Jaebum soft, soothing tone came through. "Then who will care for the boys?"

 

Ah, the humiliation… He retraced his steps. "What? The boys will be there too?"

 

"Why wouldn't they be?"

 

He was silent, confused by both himself and Jaebum. Before he could say another word though, Jaebum ended the call and he smacked a palm to his forehead.

 

Ugh… Why didn't Tzuyu tell me?

 

He hurried out the room to find Tzuyu and when he did, he asked about the boys' whereabouts.

 

"Youngjae hasn't come back from his session with his school mistress. Yugyeom is with Mrs. Nody and her son, Bambam," Tzuyu said frowning.

 

"But Mr. Im said they'll be accompanying us to the event."

 

Tzuyu cocked a brow in surprise. "Oh! I wasn't aware of that, but maybe he has his own plans," she said gazing nervously away from him. "Please get ready. Mr. Im won't be happy if you're late. I'll… sort the boys out and get them ready before seven."

Chapter Text

For the first few minutes after the phone call with Jinyoung, it was quiet and quite frankly, peaceful… until Jackson opened his mouth. "Jinyoung will be there?"

 

They were riding in the back of his Rolls-Royce, on their way to the airport in Atlanta to catch their flight back to New York.

 

He didn't want to answer. He couldn't answer. He didn't have an answer. So, he stayed silent, and Jackson turned to look out the window.

 

"I told you to fuck him, not completely lose your head to him."

 

He's right. I am losing my mind.

 

Jackson shook his head. "I've never seen you like this, for anyone - not even the boys, Jae. Why the fuck do you want her out there so badly anyway? He belongs in your bed, nowhere else. Do you want Jinyoung to become a target? We're in the middle of a war, Ge."

 

I want to give him a chance to see his sister, was what came to mind. He didn't say it. Saying it would only open a new can of worms he didn't care to sort through. Saying it meant he would be admitting to not only digging into Jinyoung more, but also to the lengths he went to ensure Jinyoung's sister would be attending the event that evening.

 

For all he knew, Jinyoung didn't know his sister. If he didn't, there would be no harm done and they would most likely not even recognize each other. If they did, what happens from there would be Jinyoung's decision to make. The only harm that could happen throughout would be no doubt inflicted on the sister.

 

Or so he thought, until Jackson pointed out so coldly the harm that could be placed on Jinyoung. Now, he was beginning to wonder if he should've waited. At least until it was safer.

 

Fuck it. Why should I wait? I want to see him as soon as possible. I want to touch him. I want him by my side tonight. He looked Jackson dead in the eyes. "Don't fucking talk to me like that."

 

Jackson simply chuckled. "You only pull the authority card when you know you've messed up. That's good then. Screw your fucking head back on properly. Stop letting that man turn you into a fucking pussy." With that Jackson stepped out of the car before he could swing a punch at the man and strolled across the tarmac to his waiting jet.

 

With a sigh, he did the same and they were in the air.

 

He changed on the plane and as soon as they were on the ground again, he was on his way to the venue. When he stepped out of the car in front of The Plaza, he was ready for the flashing cameras and bright red carpet.

 

It was the annual Big Dreamers charity ball hosted by the Mayor of New York's office. It was in his best interest to mingle around for a bit, spend as much money as he could throw at whatever they were planning to auction off and take as many pictures as humanly possible. Tonight was nothing less than two million.

 

As he walked into the lobby with Jackson following closely behind, a beautiful young woman greeted them with a dazzlingly, coy and fake smile and an even more fake set of nails and breasts, offering to usher them to their table.

 

He had other plans though. "Please wait for my plus one instead. His name is Park Jinyoung," he said feeling utterly satisfied by the falter in her smile. "Make sure to show him straight to his seat, then let me know as soon as possible."

 

The woman nodded her head, fixing her smile and he turned away to approach the respectable real estate mogul, Wang Jianlin.

Chapter Text

What am I doing here? he wondered as he stood in the lobby of the Plaza.

 

True, he was dressed classically in his Giorgio Armani tux, but he felt… displaced. Everyone around him knew where to go and what they were doing there, that he felt like he didn't belong. The men with diamond-embellished women on their arms glided by, while he stood alone, wondering why he was in a place he had no business being in.

 

He took a deep breath, closing his eyes and trying to calm himself, but when he opened them back up with the decision to leave, he saw her. He froze in his spot as they made eye contact.

 

His heart squeezed in his chest as he looked at the sister who had hasn't seen in twelve years, but it altogether paused when she looked away from him as if she didn't recognize him, looking at the man she held onto. They walked right by him and… nothing. Just nothing. Absolutely nothing.

 

He was still in shock, so he subtly started to follow them until they were joined by a cluster of dignitaries who she began to talk to and shook hands with.

 

"Can I help you?" someone asked from behind him.

 

He jumped and turned to the voice to find an attractive young woman standing behind him. "Do you have an invitation, sir?"

 

"Uh, no," he frowned.

 

"Perhaps you're waiting for someone?" Her eyebrows shoot up his forehead and her voice becomes a tad colder.

 

“Yes, I’m meeting Mr. Im Jaebum.”

 

She glances down at the clipboard she has in her hand before she raises her head with a smile. “You must be Park Jinyoung.”

 

“I am.”

 

Her smile widens. “I’ll show you to your table.”

 

He smiles in return before he follows her to a table meant for eight. It was elegantly set with bouquets of blood red roses and tall candles, but his mind goes into a turmoil. He couldn’t believe he was here -  in the Plaza for what seemed to be a charity ball.

 

What are the chances? he scoffed. Keep your head up and enjoy the night no matter what happens. A waiter comes to the table and hands him a flute of champagne.

 

He settled back into the seat and watches the crowd, looking for his sister. It’s an easy task. For some odd reason, he feels nothing as he watches her smile and talk to people. A few minutes pass before he realizes something. He doesn’t feel anything because his sister was just that - his sister in name only. He wanted nothing to do with her - not even recognition. If anything, tonight only proved that he could close that door once and for all.

 

He drained his drink, deciding on giving Jaebum a few more minutes before he leaves silently.

 

Music was playing and some people were already smoothly heading to the dance floor. He watches and out of nowhere, he hears his name being called.

 

“Mr. Im.”

 

He turns and watches as a young woman he’d spotted with his sister run towards Jaebum.

 

Jaebum stopped, but his eyes never left him, and only when the woman reached him did he turn to her.

 

The lady flushed a pretty pink under Jaebum’s scrutiny, stumbling on herself.

 

Oh yeah. He completely understood what had come over her. He grabbed another drink, but it felt like shards of glass going down his throat as he swallowed. He wanted to stand, to leave, but he couldn’t move. He couldn’t take his eyes off Jaebum and the young woman. She was laughing up at Jaebum as the table he was at began to fill up. He received polite nods from the guests as they took their places around the table and he prayed that no one would ask who he was.

 

The prayer wasn’t answered.

 

He soon realized that both the mayor and the governor respectively were just a few seats from him. He drained the glass and wondered who the hell had seated him there.

 

“Hello, are you here with Jaebum?” the mayor’s wife asked.

 

Yes, that’s right. I’m a nobody. My only worth is I’m sleeping with the man, he wanted to say, but instead he rose to his feet. “I need to use the men’s. Please excuse me.”

 

He was out of there and it took everything in him not to run across the banquet room. He walked with his chin up and finally got his escape. When he got to the restrooms, there were too many people at the mirror, so he found an empty stall, sat on it and called Mark.

 

When he didn’t pick up, he wanted to flush his phone down the toilet.He needed so desperately to hear Mark to tell him not to be a coward or to at least talk him into realizing his place and to get out of there. He had no idea what to do.

 

Eventually, when the bathroom quieted down, he got out of the stall and stood in front of the gigantic mirror. “You got this, Jinyoung,” he said to his reflection. “Don’t let them scare you off.”

 

Ask him about the boys, he reminded himself. If they aren’t here, then he tricked you and you can leave.

 

He walked out of the bathroom and he was stopped by a hand on his arm. When he turned up, he froze as his eyes fell on his sister.

Chapter Text

Soyoung smiled at him, and his chin began to tremble. Somehow he was able to stretch his lips into a thin smile.

 

“Can I help you?”

 

Her smile widened as she looked him over. Her eyes were bright and her short hair was a beautiful blonde. She looked nothing at all like him, but damn if she wasn’t as beautiful as he remembered her to be.

 

“You’re sitting beside Im Jaebum,” she said.

 

He nodded politely in response.

 

“Are you two…” She raised a brow suggestively.

 

The smile faded from his lips. The disappointment he felt was so great , it knocked the breath out of him and he couldn’t hold his tongue anymore. “That’s none of your business,” he said tightly.

 

The smile left her lips as well.

 

He turned to walk away, but she stepped closer blocking him from leaving. He turned and looked at her.

 

“I don’t know who you are,” she said, “but you look, quite out of place here. Just because you wear a designer suit, it doesn’t mean you can fit into a strata of society you don’t belong to. So I’m going to give you a piece of advice. Take it in the vein it’s given in. I’m being cruel to be kind. You’re wasting your time with Jaebum. He'll play with you for a while, then he'll realize what a horrible mistake you are and leave you for someone from his own social circle, and not… his likeness in gender. Don't you see? You're just a phase, sweetie. Stop fooling yourself." Soyoung smiled then and turned to leave.

 

"Don't you recognize your own brother, Soyoung?" he asked after she had flounced out of his way and back into the ballroom.

 

Just a phase.

 

Tears gathered in his eyes and feel before he could stop them. "Ah, fuck ," he hissed, quickly dabbing at them with his knuckles. He walked back into the bathroom to grab a towel, but caught the image of himself in the mirror. I won't cry. Not here,, he tried to tell himself, but the image that stared back at him looked distraught. Twinkling dark brown eyes looked back at him dancing with unshed tears. At least not amongst these cruel people who only understood money, power and social class.

 

He thought of his sister. How she had climbed the ladder herself and yet, tried to stop another who she recognized as social climber as well. It was heartbreaking, but he understood. His own sister saw him as an imposter - a fake - and was saving Jaebum for the elegant young woman she had come with.

 

He looked at himself in the mirror once more - searching for something, anything. What gave me away? My hair? My lack of social graces? Is it because I'm not covered in gold and diamonds? Or is it something intangible that only the rich possessed and someone as poor as I am would never be able to even recognize?

 

He shook his head as he squared his shoulders. I don't want to be part of your world anyways, so you're welcome to keep it. I'm done with this party, he thought, rolling his eyes for good measure. I'm leaving. I am calling a taxi and going back to the apartment to eat whatever leftover pizza Mark has. And Jaebum? He go go fuck himself!

 

He was walking out of the bathroom again when his phone rang. It was Mark, so he picked up immediately.

 

"Hey, I'm busy right now, but are you okay?" he asked over the noise on his side.

 

Just hearing Mark deep voice unfurled the nervous knots in his chest, and he suddenly couldn't hold back the waterworks that came rushing forth. "Where are you?" he asked in a rush.

 

"I took a last minute waitressing gig for the night. It'll help pay for some bills."

 

"I'm so sorry," he immediately apologized. "I don't know what's wrong with me."

 

"Give me a minute. I'm going into the bathroom," he said. "Tell me everything."

 

"No," he replied, shaking his head. "You'll get on trouble."

 

"I'm in a single stall," Mark said. "You have five minute, so spill."

 

With a sigh, he turned away from the ballroom entrance and walked down the hall to a door that lead to the fire escape. "I-I don't know… I don't know what's wrong with me, Mark," he sniffed. "You know I don't usually let what people say get to me, but I'm at this party. I have no jewelry, and my… my sister is here-"

 

"What?" Mark screeched into the phone.

 

“Yeah, she’s here. She didn’t even recognize me and I didn’t tell her who I was. She’s with a man and a young woman. The woman knows Jaebum. I think she’s kind of - um… oh, God - I think she wants him, Mark.” A sob escaped him. “Oh God, I feel like I’m going crazy right now.”

 

“Hey, calm down. You’re not insane and they’re not just people,” she quietly said, “One is a man you just might have fallen in love with, and the other is your sister that didn’t even bother to know what you look like now. I would probably trash the entire gala by now if I were you. You know me, I’m a basket case. I’m not kidding.”

 

He almost laughed as he wiped the tears from his eyes. “I know.”

 

“You’re actually sobbing,” Mark said in wonder. “The last time that happened was when Ana left Christian.”

 

He took a deep breath. “Actually, I’ve cried a lot since I met that asshole.”

 

“Whoa. How is this his fault?”

 

“I don’t know. He just left me there.”

 

“Give him a break. He just got back from wherever the hell he went.”

 

“He was flirting with a woman.”

 

“I thought you said she was flirting with him.”

 

“Yeah, she looked like she wanted him to fuck her right there in front of everyone,” he cried into the phone, jealousy buring in his stomach.

 

“So what? Even I wanted to climb that hard body. It doesn’t mean anything. The question is, does he want her? And if he doesn’t, you have nothing to worry about.”

 

“Well, he didn’t look very encouraging…”

 

“Are you planning to leave?”

 

He sighed heavily. “I think I should, don’t you?”

 

Mark sucked in a breath.

 

“Mark…” he warned. It was always a bad sign when he sucked in a breath.

 

“You’re at the Plaza, right?”

 

“Yeah,” he confirmed cautiously.

 

“Guess what? I’m like two minutes away. Literally, right down the block.”

 

“No, don’t come here,” he protested.

 

“Oh, fuck,” he swore suddenly.

 

“What?”

 

“Almost the whole restaurant has just seen me crouching in the corner of the bathroom like a thief with a phone to my ear.” I heard the sound of shuffling and him saying, “I’m sorry everyone. I have an idiot gay for a brother. You know how it is. Boyfriend problems that seem like it’s the end of the world.”

 

“Stop! Mark! You won’t be able to get in anyways. They ask for your invitation as soon as you get into the hallway.”

 

“I can get in through the back door. Waiters in full uniform have privileges.”

 

They laughed like two crazy girls and then Mark hung up.

Chapter Text

He loitered around the men’s room. He was sure Mark wouldn’t be able to get in, but less than five minutes later, he was walking up to him in his black and white formal wear that he only used for waiting.

 

He pulled off his favorite pair of black diamond earrings from his earlobes and thrust them into his hands, before unclasping his father’s Cartier Ronde Solo watch from his wrist.. “You said you didn’t have jewelry. Now, you do.”

 

“Oh, Mark. I can’t take your dad’s watch. It’s too precious. I’d be too afraid to lose it or scratch the face.”

 

“They’re priceless to me, but so are you. That woman, who was like a rock to you and yet abandoned you when your parents passed away, is probably the poorest creature on the earth because she has no clue who she chose to forget, so you’re gonna show her, Jinyoung. Enjoy the rest of your dinner, and don’t you dare feel less in any way than all these sad miscreants, hiding behind their designer clothes.”

 

Mark held him by the shoulders and looked into his eyes.

 

“Just try to make it through the night without losing your temper and beating someone up, okay?” he said with a brilliant toothy smile.

 

“Hey, this is me we’re talking about. I don’t beat people up. I leave that to you.”

 

A waiter passed by with a tray of canapes and Mark lifted one and put it into his mouth. “The truffles are amazing,” he said, his smile widening deviously. “And there’s bound to be caviar coming later on. It tastes like shit, but make sure to have some for the stories later on,” he grinned before he looked him over one last time. “Okay. My work here is done. I gotta go. I still need to get paid for tonight. I’m not working for nothing. Love ya.”

 

With a wave, Mark turned and disappeared down the hall again.

 

Seeing Mark changed everything. He gathered his strength enough not to feel small or inadequate anymore. He felt… strong. It was Mark he wanted to emulate, not these shallow people.

 

He went back to his seat, head held high, and saw Jaebum. He was already seated, but his eyes were roving the place. He knew he was looking for him.

 

The master of ceremonies announced the governor’s arrival at that moment, but he couldn’t take his eyes off Jaebum - the man that had turned his life upside down. Dashing was a pitiful way to describe him in that moment.

 

Dressed in a black tux, his hair was brushed back showing his beautiful, unmarred forehead. Under the bright lights of the ballroom, his skin was glowing. He noticed the ever-present and tiny furrows between his brows, but they weren’t noticeable unless focused on. He was beautiful. So mysterious and unreachable. He almost couldn’t believe he had slept with the man on more than one occasion.

 

He stood out in the room, unmistakable, incomparable… ir mm/,gntimidating.

 

From far, he was Mr. Im - billionaire extraordinaire. However, to him, Jaebum was just Jaebum - the ravishing brute that seemed to have made not only to blow his mind but mess him up emotionally.

 

His eyes fell to Jaebum’s chest. Underneath the tux was a chest he had trailed kisses down countless times. His breath caught as he thought about the times he had dug his nails into Jaebum’s strong shoulders. His eyes went back up to his second favorite place on the man’s body. No prize for guessing his first on the list. Those lips. He had kissed them feverishly and they had in turn returned the favor on him - everywhere.

 

He slipped into his seat and smiled politely at the others at their table, but he was hyper-aware of the man beside him. He wanted so desperately to look into Jaebum’s eyes. He wanted to see if the primal lust that was usually there for him was still there.

 

He took the champagne flute on the table and gulped it down until he nearly choked. He covered his mouth as a small cough escaped him, and Jaebum leaned into him, his body heat automatically frying his brains.

 

“Are you okay?” he asked.

 

He couldn’t speak, so he nodded.

 

Just then a full philharmonic orchestra of about sixty members began to play a symphony so sweet it soothed his nerves, and he allowed it. By the time they were done, his applause was heartfelt. The night wore on with speeches, most of which he couldn't decipher, but he applauded at the appropriate time. Food arrived and he played with, not feeling much of an appetite until waiters came to clear his plate away.

 

Eventually, the orchestra began to play again and people began to get up to fill the dance floor. Both he and Jaebum stayed in their seats. People came to speak to Jaebum, but for some odd reason, Jaebum would cut the conversation short, almost as quickly as it began.

 

When he couldn't stand it anymore, he turned to Jaebum. "Where are Youngjae and Yugyeom?"

 

The answers he got was simple, "They're not here."

 

"You told me they would be."

 

"I'm allowed to change my mind."

 

"They're were never supposed to be here, were they?"

 

Jaebum looked at him then. "No."

 

They fell into silence, looking at each other until someone came to him. When he looked up, his eyes met the young woman he had seen earlier talking to Jaebum. He didn't know who she was, but if something about her eyes seemed… familiar.

 

Is she… my niece?

 

A sudden sadness filled him when realization hit him.

 

She has the same eyes as Mom.

 

The young woman didn't even know they were very closely related. Even worse was that, if she did, she would have been horrified to have a gay uncle who was a nanny.

 

"Could I whisper something in your ear?" she asked with a bright smile.

 

He nodded.

 

"My mom said she spoke to you in the bathroom and that you understood. I would like to sit beside Jaebum."

 

It took a moment for it to sink in, and it hit him painfully square in the heart. His sister knew who he was. She had recognized him. Otherwise, she would never have dared to ask him to give up the opportunity of a lifetime to a stranger.

 

He turned to Jaebum, opening his mouth to ask before he closed it. This is what his sister wanted. He stood up, and with a smile, he handed the chair to his niece.

 

It was time for him to leave anyway. He walked away from Jaebum and didn't look back.

Chapter Text

The glass shattered in his hand as he watched Jinyoung walk out of the ballroom and everyone looked at him.

 

"Mr. Im, are you okay?" Jinyoung's niece asked, her eyes growing wide. She was beautiful, but there was nothing about her he found attractive.

 

He stood and Jinyoung's sister appeared out of nowhere. "Mr. Im," she said sweetly.

 

He began to see red as he looked at her with all the disgust he felt, but he spoke to her as calmly as he could. "If you don't get out of my way in five seconds, I will make sure the banks that hold all your debts recall their loans. You will lose everything ."

 

It took two seconds for it to sink in, one to realize he meant every word and another to be convinced he could accomplish everything he was threatening. "Get up," she shrieked, yanking her daughter out of Jinyoung's chair. "Get the hell up!"

 

He went after Jinyoung, barely unable to contain his disgust for human beings. He found Jinyoung standing outside hailing a cab down, and reached the man just as he was placed his hand on the latch of the door. He caught Jinyoung by the arm and yanked him into his arms.

 

"Let me go," Jinyoung sneered at him, trying in vain to push him away. The man was no match for him though. He waved the driver off after throwing a couple of Benjamins into the passenger's seat, and dragged Jinyoung to his waiting Bentley.

 

As he pulled the door open, Jinyoung stopped and glared at him.

 

"Get in," he grated.

 

Jinyoung refused to move.

 

“I seem to be the only one you have no problem defying today,” he growled, raking a hand through his hair.

 

Only then did Jinyoung get into the car, and he slid in right behind him. Neither of them spoke as the car sped into the night. He loosened his bow tie from his neck and threw it at the headrest in front of him with all the frustration building in his chest.

 

Eventually, Jinyoung did speak. “Please let me off somewhere so I can take a cab home.” When he didn’t answer, Jinyoung turned to him. “Jaebum.”

 

He was still pulsing with fury. “Your home is my house,” he said.

 

His driver sped all the way home and the moment they arrived, Jinyoung jumped out of the car and started running at breakneck speed towards the house.

 

He got out and went after him.

 

Jinyoung went straight to his room, pulled out his luggage from the closet and began to throw his things into it.

 

He grabbed the luggage of the bed and threw it across the room where it crashed into a free-standing mirror, shattering it to tiny pieces on impact.

 

Jinyoung looked at the chaos in shock, his eyes nearly popping out of its socket.

 

“Am I a joke to you?” he snarled.

 

“What the hell are you talking about?”

 

“Why are you packing your things?”

 

"Because I want to leave.”

 

“Why do you want to leave?”

 

“Isn’t it obvious?”

 

He walked back to the door and shut it as calmly as possible, hoping against hope that the children were sound asleep across the hall before he turned back to Jinyoung. “Answer me!” he roared.

 

Suddenly, tears filled Jinyoung eyes and his heart nearly seized in his chest. “What do you want from me?”

 

“Let me rephrase that question. Why don’t you want anything from me ?”

 

Jinyoung scoffed, looking up at the ceiling in an attempt to keep his tears at bay before he looked back at him. “What can you give me?” he asked, “Besides a broken heart?”

 

Silence.

 

“I thought so,” Jinyoung taunted. “What do you want to hear, Jaebum? Or what do you want to see? You want to see me crazy in love with you? Worshipping the very ground you walk on, or crazy with jealousy like tonight when that bitch fearlessly came to ask for the seat beside you?”

 

They share the same blood . He wondered if Jinyoung realized that. “And you got up,” he reminded the man. “So easily. You got up.”

 

“I have no place in your life, Jaebum. Isn’t that what you wanted? A fucktoy? Someone to play with?”

 

“A fucktoy? That’s rich, even coming from you. I invited you to accompany me and you treated me like I was nothing, ” he bellowed. He couldn’t believe the words coming out of his mouth. “You gave me up to a complete stranger without a thought. Where did your insurmountable pride go?”

 

“It disappears,” Jinyoung said. “When people ask me for things that don’t matter.”

 

“Oh yeah? And when it comes to falling asleep in my arms? Can’t do that then, can you? Is it because it matters?”

 

Jinyoung took a step back like he had slapped him. “What if I fall in love with you?”

 

He glared at the man. “I want you to fall in love with me.”

 

A stunned expression crossed Jinyoung’s face. “What?”

 

“Yes, I want you to fall in love with me.”

 

“For what? To stroke your ego until the next conquest comes along?” Jinyoung demanded aggressively.

 

“No, because I want to take care of you.”

 

“I don’t need you to take care of me.”

 

Silence.

 

“I need you by my side.”

 

“For how long?” Jinyoung asked. “Until you get tired of me, and toss me aside, like every other lover you had in the past. No, thank you. I’ll take my chances elsewhere.’

 

He took a step towards Jinyoung, but the reaction he got made him stop short. The man took three steps back. “Don’t come close to me. I need you to let me go, right now. Before it’s too late.”

 

“Too late for whom?”

 

“I’ve never assumed or expected love in my life, because even the people who are biologically programmed to love me, couldn’t. I’m not asking you for anything. Just please, let me go, okay?”

 

“Will you be able to leave?” he asked the man, the ache in his heart growing. “And forget everything about me? About us?”

 

“Time and my brain. They’ve bot me this far. I’ll just keep leaning them,” Jinyoung said before he tried to leave.

 

He stopped the man before he could reach the door. “Come with me to my chateau in Napa. We’ll take the kids. I don’t have the confidence to love you. In my world, a billion things can go wrong. Having you in my heart will drive me insane, but my body needs you now, and I just can’t let you go. Not yet.”

 

He pulled out his phone and made a quick call. In seconds, two hefty guards appeared at the door blockading Jinyoung from leaving.

 

Jinyoung looked at them in disbelief.

 

“We’ll come back in a week. After that, you’re free to do whatever you want.”

 

“You’re imprisoning me?”

 

“I’m making a decision for the both of us. Let’s fuck each other out of our systems before the week is out. This craziness has to burn itself out. It can’t last. Nothing that burns this bright can last.”

 

Jinyoung snorted in bitter amusement. “Do you actually think that it’ll work?”

 

“It doesn’t matter if it does or not. We’ll be done with each other when we return from California. Not a day earlier. We’ll leave tomorrow night.”

Chapter Text

He woke to Youngjae's laughter. It was filled with so much joy and glee that he had to get out of bed and see what was making him so, but when his feet landed on the floor, the events of the night before, hit him. From the incredible fiasco with his sister to his conversation with Jaebum.

 

It all felt unreal. It was like looking through a window pane watching someone else's life.

 

Pulling on a pair of sweatpants, he went to the window where the sound was coming from. He was indeed having a great time, but with someone he didn't recognize at all.

 

The woman pushing Youngjae on the swing crouched down and tickled Yugyeom in the stomach causing him to giggle too. Her long brown hair was covering her face from his view. As she straightened, her hair moved out of face and strange feeling crawled up his spine. There was something familiar about her that he couldn’t place.

 

She got behind Youngjae on the swing and pushed him high into the hair before stepping away to dodge the swing from crashing into her. Youngjae swung back before soaring into the air again, squealing.

 

Panic and nervous, he hurried downstairs and out to the garden to where they were. Youngjae squealed even louder when he saw him, and urged for the swing to come to a stop. The boys came over to him to give him a hug before they dragged him to the woman. When they got closer, he brushed stray strands of hair from Yugyeom’s face, noticing the boys were still in their pajamas.

 

“You haven’t washed your faces,” he scolded lightly tapping their noses. “I must have overslept.”

 

Both boys shuffled their feet looking guilty.

 

He figured they must have come to his room, saw him still asleep, and tiptoed back out. He smiled at the children before he looked at the woman they both seemed to be comfortable with.

 

“Hi, you must be the new nanny. I’m So Yeon, Nayeon’s younger sister.” the woman said, looking at him with piercing brown eyes and a smile just like Nayeon’s, it was eerie. “I can finally see why they’re so taken with you.”

 

He smiled with pleasure, nodding his head, and accepted the hand she offered. “It’s a pleasure to meet you.”

 

“I’ve been in South Korea handling the family business, so I haven’t been able to see the boys for almost two months now. I’ve missed them so much.”

 

The smile Youngjae flashed up at So Yeon was open and trusting. A stark contrast to the way he treated Jaebum.

 

“Will they be able to have breakfast with me before I leave?”

 

“There is absolutely no reason why they can’t,” he replied with a big smile of his own, instantly liking her. She was polite and more importantly, Youngjae seemed to be more relaxed around her. “Just let me get them washed up and dressed before bringing them back downstairs.”

 

Half an hour later, they were seated in the dining room with So Yeon seated between the boys offering her food to the boys. She had asked for waffles, bacon and eggs - things the boys didn’t usually have, but because she had ordered them, the boys did as well. She gave them bites and nibbles from her fork to their absolute delight.

 

He watched the interaction and wondered why Youngjae was never this way with Jaebum around.

 

As if on cue, all the hair on the nape of his neck stood and he knew Jaebum was approaching. When he looked up, he had the answer to his question. Jaebum’s presence wasn’t cold - at least to him - but has just… intimidating. Very. Unlike his sister in law who seemed gentle, kind and caring.

 

When he got to the doorway, he stopped. His face was cold and closed off. He said something in Chinese and turned away to take his leave.

 

With a smile at the boys, So Yeon stood on her feet. She excused herself, promising to return, in Korean as she looked at the boys, who nodded their heads happily.

 

He always poured coffee for Jaebum. It was always the first thing he consumed before he ate. “What do you think, boys? Should I bring your father some coffee?”

 

The boys nodded their heads.

 

He poured a cup of coffee and carried it out to his home office. He had just placed his knuck;es on the heavy oak door to knock when he heard a crashing sound from inside the room. His heart thumped loudly and he staggered back, the hot drink spilling on his hands. HE dropped the cip on the floor and it shattered to pieces.

 

“Shit,” he growled, instantly bending down to pick it up.

 

The door opened a moment later and he looked up to see So Yeon standing in the doorway. To his shock, she swayed unsteadily, her face pale as a ghost, but unharmed.

 

“Are you okay?” she asked him.

 

In his peripherals, he could see Jaebum taking a seat calmly. It confused him so much that his hand tightened on a shard, cutting into his palm, and a soft cry escaped him.

 

Instantly, Jaebum was out of his chair again and walking towards him.

 

However, So Yeon was already crouching down to help him.

 

“Jinyoung,” Jaebum called urgently. He looked anxious.

 

“It’s okay. I’m fine,” he said, standing back up.

 

“Show me,” Jaebum ordered with a frown.

 

“It’s nothing. It’s just a little cut,” he said, aware that So Yeon was watching them. He didn’t want the woman to know that he and Jaebum were lovers.

 

“I’ll get one of the maids to clean it up,” he said, hurrying away.

 

As he went, he heard Jaebum roar out something in anger. He turned around to see that the two men that stood at his door the night before appear out of nowhere. They took So Yeon by the arm with less grace than should have been given to a sister in law, and in shock he turned to look at Jaebum.

 

He was watching him without any expression at all.

 

This is one of the many reasons we can’t be together. Your world is too terrifying.

Chapter Text

Later that night, he and the boys were packed and waiting for their ride to the airport. An entourage of Mercedes Benz backed by two SUVs arrived and they were ushered into the Benz by Jackson.

 

Jaebum drove them himself, while the other two vehicles escorted them and in no time, they were at the airport. The door was pulled open by Kookie. Waiting on the tarmac was a private jet, two hostesses, and a pilot.

 

He saw another side of Jackson then. Despite his short stature, he jumped out of the car and kept an eagle eye out as they walked towards the plane. Through the hatch, he could see two more security guards already inside and searching the plane, two outside searching the outside and two more exiting the cargo hold. It made him wonder why Jaebum always had to have so much security around him. Was this all for the boys’ benefit? Jaebum did seem to be paranoid about their safety. Maybe for the rich, the risk of being kidnapped was always at the back of their minds.

 

They were welcomed aboard by the crew with smiles and ushered to their seats by a pristinely polished hostess with a flawless bun and dark red lipstick.

 

Jaebum quickly settled himself with a laptop across his desk and started speaking in French to someone on his phone.

 

Youngjae sat next to him and Yugyeom pulled a blanket over him, no doubt to let the rocking of the plane to lull him to sleep, while Jaebum continued on with his call, his gaze alternating between the boys and himself.

 

The service was excellent. They had sliced fresh fruits, sandwiches, little cakes and scones.

 

He noticed though that Jaebum didn’t eat. He worked steadily for a while before he got up and walked to the back of the plane.

 

When Youngjae fell asleep, he carefully covered him with a blanket and went to look for Jaebum. The place was big, he couldn’t find him, so eventually he asked Kookie.

 

The man pointed to a door. “He’s in there.”

 

He hesitated before reminding himself that he had nothing to be afraid of - just the limited time he had left with Jaebum. He walked to the door and without knocking, he pushed it open and went in.

 

Jaebum was asleep, but instantly came awake the moment he opened the door. It was a short flight so he didn’t expect Jaebum to sleep, but as he gazed into Jaebum’s eyes, he saw how exhausted the man looked.

 

He had undone the top button of his white shirt and had obviously just plopped himself over the duvet. He looked so sexy, but as usual painfully alone.

 

He stopped at the foot of the bed.

 

“What is it?” Jaebum asked, sitting up.

 

He wanted to run his fingers through his sleep-tousled hair, but Jaebum beat him to it.

 

“The boys,” he began, “Why don’t you ever spend time with them?”

 

He sighed. “Haven’t you noticed how terrified they are of me? Especially Youngjae.”

 

“Even so. Maybe if you tried just a little bit more…”

 

“If I come too close to Youngjae, and show him even the tiniest bit of intention to stay, he looks like he’s about to burst into tears and when I do it to Yugyeom, he watches me like a mother hen.”

 

“Why?” he asked. “Has your relationship with him always been this way?”

 

“Of course not,” Jaebum answered looking hurt and insulted. “We used to be really close, but ever since Nayeon passed away, he’s been slowly withdrawing from me.” Jaebum narrowed his eyes as he thought a bit more deeply. “No,” he concluded thoughtfully. “It’s a bit more recent than that. It really began at the same time he stopped talking.”

 

“But -”



“No more,” Jaebum said. “We’ll talk about it when we get to Napa. Right now, we only have a short time before we land.”

 

“Oh,” he said thinking he was being dismissed. He went to turn around, but Jaebum reached out and caught his hand before tugging on it.

 

He fell into Jaebum’s lap and the breath was knocked out of him as his back connected with Jaebum’s rock hard one. Suddenly, Jaebum’s beautiful face was much too close and his brain stopped functioning. “Jaebum,” he whispered, as the man brushed his thumb in slow feather light circles on his pulse in his wrist.

 

“Your heart is racing,” Jaebum mocked.

 

We have one week…

 

A surge of emotion that he could understand rushed through him at the thought, but before Jaebum could look into his eyes, he sealed their lips together. The kiss was fervent, desperate and heart wrenching all at the time.

 

Jaebum let his wrist go and he turned himself to wrap his legs around Jaebum’s waist. His hands were on either side of Jaebum’s head as he undulated his hips, feeling Jaebum’s cock harden between the cheeks of his ass.

 

Jaebum’s hands immediately settled on his hips, guiding him as he rocked up. “Too much clothes in the way. I want you naked.”

 

For once, he was remorseful. He broke away from Jaebum’s mouth to make a promise to him. “I’ll be sure to go naked throughout this week.”

 

Jaebum growled hungrily. “You’re wearing a plug too - no underwear when you are in clothes.”

 

“Okay,” he readily agreed.

 

With Jaebum’s eyes on him, the man pulled at the button of his jeans and slipped his big hand down to his ass, gripping it to pull him closer as his other hand gripped his cock.

 

He gasped at the sweet pressure around his cock. His eyes shut as he savored the flick of Jaebum wrist as he slowly caressed his cock.

 

Still holding onto him, Jaebum turned them around, laying him on his back on the bed. He let go only long enough to unbutton his pants and release his cock from its confines.

 

His eyes widened in alarm. “Jaebum, the kids are just outside.”

 

“We’ll keep it down.”

 

Now, he panicked even more because he had never been able to keep it down when they were in full blown sex, or even halfway there, for that matter.

 

No matter how many times he’s seen Jaebum’s cock, it never failed to excite him. He gazed at it with unashamed lust. The beautiful shaft that was thick and veiny. The tip of it that was beading with precum… But he shook his head. “I want you to fuck me, Jaebum more than you can imagine, but we need to wait.”

 

Jaebum’s hands were on his hips, pulling his jeans down.

 

“Jaebum,” he whispered, batting his hands away.

 

“No, I’m going to fuck you - right here, right now,” the man said. “I need to be inside you right now… I need to feel you pulsing around my cock, milking me, Jinyoung.” Pushing up his shirt, Jaebum traced his hard nipple with his tongue down to his cock that was still peeking out from the top of his unbuttoned jeans. “Don’t make me beg, Jinyoung ‘cause I will,” Jaebum said before he swallowed his cock whole.

 

He moaned feverishly as Jaebum sucked on his cock. He buried his hands in the man’s hair tugging, but not really pulling him off. His breathing became too fast, too short and soon he was writhing beneath Jaebum as the man pulled his jeans off.

 

“Under the pillow,” Jaebum pulled off only long enough to say before he went back to sucking him.

 

With trembling hands, he reached under the pillow and pulled out a black Montblanc bag about the size of a wallet, but thicker. He was about to unzip the bag, but Jaebum pulled away completely and plucked it out of his hands. He wanted to whine, but Jaebum opened the bag and a small plug and a bottle he knew without a doubt was lubricant fell on the bed.

 

He gasped, glaring at the man. “You planned this, didn’t you?”

 

Jaebum only grinned at him, popping the bottle open and squeezing a dollop of the clear gel into his palm.

 

He rolled his eyes, laying back down to look up at the ceiling. “Evil man.”

 

Jaebum chuckled, licking at his cockhead.

 

He groaned.

 

Jaebum rose up and kissed him softly. He tasted himself on the man’s lips and a savage hunger filled him. He wanted more, needed more. “Please,” he whined.

 

He didn’t need to say anymore. Jaebum trailed kisses to his jaw to his pulse, licking there as he reached between their bodies and pushed a finger through his tight rim. The initial pain of being penetrated eased after a few seconds and pleasure exploded as the man began to massage his walls.

 

“You’re always so fucking tight, Jinyoung,” Jaebum groaned against his neck. The man's hot breath fanned across his skin as his fingers stoked the fire in him. "You grip me so fucking tightly, like you don't ever want me to leave."

 

"Jaebum, please," he begged, lifting his hips and begging for more. He tried to keep his moans and whimpers down to a minimum by gripping the duvet with one hand and another over his mouth.

 

Gently, Jaebum added another finger, then another. His thrusts were even and rhythmic, almost calculating and yet, urgent. He could feel the need in Jaebum's hand as stretched him mercilessly.

 

The assault was maddening and violent that everything around him ceased to exist. All he knew and cared about in that moment was Jaebum and delicious chaos his hand were creating.

 

Just when he thought he couldn't handle more, Jaebum leaned down and captured his nipple between his teeth - tugging, licking and sucking on it, like it was his last meal on Earth.

 

A tortured cry escaped him and Jaebum pulled away to look in his eyes. The contrast between the storm between his legs and the tender look in Jaebum's eyes ripped through him, and he would've came, if Jaebum hadn't pulled away. He was about to wrap his legs around Jaebum, but the man caught his leg and plunged into him - deep, precise and utterly, perfect.

 

They both groaned in relief, but he tipped his head back, arching - silently asking for more.

 

When he opened his eyes, Jaebum was still looking at him. There was confusion in his eyes. "So how could you leave me so easily?"

 

He opened his mouth to answer, but it was taken away from him when Jaebum pulled out until only the tip of his cock remain in him, only to plunge back into him. Faster, deeper, harder. Jaebum picked up the pace steadily and whatever answer he was going to give Jaebum was lost.

 

He lost himself in the pleasure that swept him up, up, up so high that he couldn't care less who heard him crying out for more. His eyes glazed over as he was overcome by wave after wave of mind-shattering ecstasy.

 

The captain's voice came over the intercom, snapping him halfway back to sanity.

 

"Let's return back to earth with the plane," Jaebum whispered into his ear, nipping at it and sending another shiver down his spine.

 

Somehow, he found the ability to laugh as he pulled Jaebum close to hide the tears in his eyes, and kissed him deeply. He felt the beginnings of his orgasm tickling his balls as Jaebum slammed into him repeatedly. He could feel his own precum sticky and wet pooling in his belly button, and he felt dirty and used in the most delicious way. His walls quickened, smiling Jaebum's cock greedily.

 

Jaebum adjusted his angle, nudging his prostate dead-on before grazing his walls and nudging it again.

 

Over and over again, wave after wave crashed into him and he cried out, "Jaebum! Ah, fuck, fuuuuc-..."

 

Jaebum's lips crushed his in a bruising kiss, and he realized how out of control he had become.

 

"Keep your voice down," Jaebum whispered against his lips.

 

The warning barely registered. He grabbed hold of Jaebum's ass and rocked his hips against the man's as he wrapped his legs around Jaebum's waist to take him in as deep as possible. "Shit," he cried hoarsely as he began to convulse.

 

He realized then that Jaebum had been holding back on him. The man's cock jabbed his p-spot like fist to his gut, knocking the breath out of him.

 

It's never easy walking away from you.

 

He came hard. His walls tightened around Jaebum as the man brutally pounded his prostate, wrenching every last bit of pleasure he could get from the assault. Every muscle and nerve in his body was alive , pulsing with ecstatic high. His toes curled as jet after jet of cum spurted from his cock and landing on Jaebum's chest, marking him.

 

Jaebum looked down at his own chest, and he groaned, exploding inside him. Hot, sticky, wet cum splashed against his walls and spilled out around Jaebum's cock and down between his ass to drip on the duvet, and he took it.

 

He lost himself in the torrent of sensations pulsing through him. The only thing grounding him was his hold around Jaebum. Like an anchor in the storm, he held on desperately to Jaebum.

 

Jaebum kissed him, burying his cries in him and in that moment, he knew there was no way in hell everyone on the plane didn't know what was happening.

 

He couldn't give less of a fuck until he remembered the boys. Even so, he couldn't let Jaebum go. He broke the kiss off and buried his face in Jaebum's neck. His brain coming as alive as his body.

 

Jaebum brushed his sweat plastered hair away from his forehead and gazed at him with amusement in his eyes.

 

"We landed," the man announced with a laugh, slipping out of him.

 

Cum sluiced out of him and he gasped, crossing his legs together.

Chapter Text

The boys were filled with energy when they finally came to a halt on the tarmac in San Francisco. He, on the other hand, was feeling lazy and a little dazed out, having been exhausted by Jaebum on the plane.

 

The ride to the chateau in the valley was an hour and a half away, but he didn't sleep. The light was fading in the sky when they arrived at the chateau gates, but he could clearly see that Jaebum really did mean a chateau .

 

Made of yellowstone, the place rose up from the ground like a fairytale. The front doors was tall and imposing as stream of security guards exited the house to greet them. When they got out of the car, Jaebum and Jackson, followed closely behind by Kookie, walked up the steps ahead of them to talk to the head of security. He lead the boys to the entrance and they waited there for Jaebum and Jackson joined them.

 

As they waited, he looked at the surrounding area. For miles and miles as far as the eye could see were vineyards and farmland. It was breathtakingly beautiful and serene to look at.

 

I could live here forever.

 

The foyer alone was at least twice the size of the one in New York.

 

A stern-faced woman in a black dress came to meet them. She introduced herself as Margaret and asked if they wanted to explore the house first, or go straight to their bedrooms. He was too tired to explore so they climbed up a stone staircase and were shown to their rooms.

 

His room gave him French Renaissance vibes with its white walls, tall windows with long blue curtains with matching, intricately designed tapestries, and gilded furniture. A massive four-poster, canopied bed was perched on a wooden platform, but looked fluffed and comfortable.

 

He groaned before squealing in delight. He’d always dreamed of sleeping in a canopied bed.

 

As soon as Margaret left, he looked at the boys. “Should we?”

 

They both looked at him in confusion, and without a word, he ran to the bed, kicking off his shoes as he went and jumped on it.

 

With matching grins, the boys exchanged a look before following his example. They were really going for it when Jaebum came into the room. Instantly, Youngjae scrambled to a stop, grabbing for Yugyeom.

 

He paused mid-leap and held on to Youngjae, who was clutching his younger brother protectively to steady them. “You want to go to your room now?” he asked.

 

Youngjae looked up at him and nodded before he tugged on Yugyeom’s arm, practically hauling him out the room.

 

He plopped himself down on the edge of the bed.

 

“Hey,” he said, almost shyly.

 

Jaebum moved closer and looked at him sitting cross-legged on the bed.

 

Suddenly, he felt awkward. He’d just seen him behaving childishly. “Um… how old is this place?” he asked as casually as he could.

 

“My grandfather bought it when my father was just a little boy and made renovations to the entire place. It dates back to the 18th century, I believe.”

 

“Wow,” he said, his eyes studying the innate portraits on the wall. “I know so little about architecture of that century. There’s so much to learn from here.”

 

“Well, there’s nothing at all to learn tonight. We need to take a shower.”

 

He arched a brow as Jaebum moved closer to him. “We?”

 

“We,’ he repeated.

 

He couldn’t stop the flush of pleasure from spreading across his face.

 

Feeling playful, he tried to roll on the bed to the other side, but Jaebum was fast. The man grabbed him by the leg and pulled him back to the edge before leaning down to haul him up and over his shoulder.

 

He burst into nervous laughter that was belly deep as Jaebum carried him like a sack of flour into the bathroom.

 

There was no way to describe the place other than elegant. He could feel his eyes widening as he took in the new room. With its copious gilding and fine marble tiling and columns, it looked like something straight out of an estate website for World’s Most Expensive Bathrooms. The tub - shouldn’t even be described as a tub was in the center of the room. The damn thing had two sets of steps that lead to the edge of it.

 

Gently, Jaebum set him down on his feet and began to tear at his clothes.

 

“Are we really going to just take a shower?” he asked cheekily biting his lip as he walked backwards up one of the steps.

 

“Of course not,” Jaebum growled, lazily stalking him like a hungry panther.

 

He dipped a toe into the already filled tub to test the water. When he found it warm, he stepped in and Jaebum wrapped an arm around his waist to stead him.

 

“We have a week,” Jaebum murmured as he leaned down to run his tongue over his nipple. “The only time my cock won’t be buried inside you is when you’re asleep and even then there is a strong possibility I will still try to bury it in anyway.”

 

He couldn’t control his laughter. “I’m not going to be getting much sleep, am I?”

 

“You can sleep when our week is over,” Jaebum said as he brushed his hair out of his eyes.

 

The man was smiling, but his eyes were desolate.

 

Please, don’t look at me that way, he silently plead. “I take it then that you won’t be staying in your room much either,” he said as lightly as he could.

 

“This is our room,” Jaebum said.

 

His eyes widened in shock, but before he could give any sort of protest, Jaebum kissed him and he melted completely into the man’s arms.

Chapter Text

He didn't want the boys to find him in bed with their father, so he woke up before the sun with the intention of looking for them and explaining. He was afraid they would misunderstand him and look at the situation as a betrayal - especially Youngjae.

 

He opened his eyes and found Jaebum resting his head on his chest. The man had an arm around his waist, locking him in place, and a great feeling of wonder filled him from deep within. Asleep, Jaebum was glorious. Muscles rose and dipped down his back to his firm ass that was partially covered by the blanket. He reached out and stroked the man's hair before leaning down and kissing him on the forehead softly.

 

Time passed, and he didn't want to break the connection until he remembered the boys again and jumped. Instantly, Jaebum was awake.

 

"I'm so sorry," he apologized, his heart fluttering madly in his chest when the man fixed his gaze on him.

 

His heart practically lurched when Jaebum stretched lazily. His muscles rippled beneath his skin and almost drooled.

 

He shook his head to clear the raunchy thoughts, but Jaebum held him down, pinning him beneath his weight.

 

"I need to go. The boys… I don't want them to find out about us, just for me to leave," he said.

 

"Don't worry. They're both taken care of. Jackson took them out riding. They left not too long ago. You thought I'd let them interrupt me from fucking you?" Jaebum asked, pressing feather-light kisses on his neck.

 

"I should feel so lucky," he said, a little irritated at how high-handed Jaebum had took control yet again. He began to push away, but Jaebum held him in place.

 

Instead of stopping, Jaebum continued to travel downwards to his navel and he lost his train of thought, finding the man's antics amusing. He collapsed into a fit of laughter, and Jaebum joined him, his rich voice filling the room.

 

"Jaebum," he said, cupping the man's face in his palms.

 

"Yes?"

 

"I really just want to breathe. I'm not running away, okay? A promise is a promise."

 

Without a word, Jaebum leaned down and pressed a soft kiss on his forehead before nodding his head and rolling over. He followed the man, laying on his chest. His heartbeat thundering in his ear.

 

"So what are our plans for the day?"

 

"Simple. We're staying in bed until ten, then you get a two hour break. After which I want you come to my study to suck me off, then you get another hour break and we'll have a picnic in the vineyard with Jackson and the boys."

 

"You have a vineyard?" he asked.

 

"Mmm… 80 hectares."

 

"Fuck."

 

Jaebum chuckled. "Are you making a request or making a comment about my vineyard?"

 

"You're beautiful when you laugh," he whispered.

 

Jaebum fell into another fit of laughter.

 

He rolled on the man, taking advantage of sitting astride him, deliberately rocking his ass against the man's length. "What's so funny?" he asked.

 

"I've never been called beautiful."

 

"So what are you called then?"

 

Jaebum hissed, his hands coming up to curl around his hips. "The word that comes to mind is usually bastard."

 

He stopped rocking. "Is it literal?"

 

"No."

 

"You must he really annoying then," he said, starting up again when Jaebum squeezed him.

 

"It's… an occupational hazard," the man groaned. "You didn't answer my question."

 

He gave Jaebum a profuse smile. "I was making a comment about your vineyard."

 

"Shame," Jaebum murmured, the smile slowly disappearing on his face.

 

He leaned down and kissed the man. "I really do want that plug though," he whispered, and the smile came back in a million watts.

 

"I think I can work with that," Jaebum whispered, lifting him away.

 

He reached between their bodies, grasping Jaebum's hard cock. "After you fuck me, of course,” hr grinned, easing himself down on the man’s cock.

 

Jaebum groaned, his eyes filling with burning lust. “That, I can definitely work with,” he replied, pulling him down.

 

He watched Jaebum’s eyelids flutter dreamily and revelled in how the simple act of allowing him access to himself, unravelled Jaebum completely.

 

He braced himself against Jaebum as he began to rock his hips. “Good. Now, work me open, baby.”

Chapter Text

Eat or explore? he asked him.

 

He winced slightly as he sat on the edge of the bed, pulling on his shoes. The plug lodged deep in his ass was brushing against his prostate both pleasurably and uncomfortably. As he straightened up, a jolt of pleasure tingled up his spine, making his shudder as a moan fell from his lips.

 

"Fuck."

 

Jaebum had not wasted any time in plugging him up after fucking him, and he was feeling not just the results of the plug, but the fuck as well.

 

He stood up slowly, deciding on finding something to eat before exploring the chateau, but no sooner did he straight that a knock on the door sounded. "Come in."

 

Margaret walked in, followed by a maid, looking as straight-faced as last night. "First things first, Master Jinyoung - breakfast. Master Jaebum requested you be brought your breakfast, then you may roam the house and grounds as you please - with a guard, of course."

 

"A guard?" he asked as the maid placed a tray of pancakes, sausage, scrambled eggs, and a pitcher of orange juice that, by the looks of it was fresh, on a table in the corner of the room.

 

"Why, yes - for safety's sake."

 

"And where is Master Jaebum?" he asked lowly, anger surging through him.

 

"In his study," she answered.

 

He took a step towards the door and winced as another burst of pleasure jolted through him, courtesy of the plug. He hissed, blushing furiously - a cold reminder of his promise echoing in his mind. He closed his eyes, trying to gain his composure.

 

When he opened them, Margaret was looking at him expectantly. "Thank you, Margaret," he said tightly, hoping the woman would go away.

 

Thankfully, she nodded at him before she nodded at the maid and left.

 

As soon as the door clicked shut behind Margaret, he realized how rude he had been and made a mental reminder to apologize. Sighing, he sat at the table and began to eat his breakfast. When he was done, he took his orange juice and stood at the window.

 

He was enjoying the sunlight streaming in when someone knocked on the door.

 

"Come in."

 

Kookie stepped into the room and bowed to him before he spoke. "Master Jinyoung, would you like to explore the grounds?"

 

He flinched at the change of status. "Ye-yes, if it's not too much trouble."

 

"Whenever you're ready, we'll be waiting outside for you."

 

He nodded, feeling the anger from earlier come surging through again. "Kookie, where are the children."

 

Kookie looked at him with an odd expression. "They're still out riding in the meadow with Mr. Wang."

 

He nodded again. "Thank you. I'll be out in a minute."

 

Ten minutes later, he was walking in the garden breathing in the scent of fresh roses and carnations. The California sun was high in the sky and gleaming down on the last of the morning dew, he was breathing in the refreshing breeze rolling through the shrubs when he came to the edge of the garden. For miles and miles, rows of grape vines. In the backdrop, beautiful mountains rose up from the ground creating a beautiful picture.  It was a gorgeous sight.

 

He sat on the grass and took out his sketchbook, wondering where to begin.

 

"'What my hand follows on your body is the line. A stream of love of heat, of light, what my eye lascivious licks'," he quoted aloud.

 

"Gary Snyder," a voice said from behind him.

 

He turned to look up at Jackson as he approached. He nodded at the man. "Are you familiar with his work?"

 

"Quite so," Jackson replied, crouching beside him. "The question is: do you think of the mountains or the lover?"

 

He gasped, looking at the man, who, in turn, took the view in as if he had made a comment about the weather instead of throwing a double edged sword in the guise of a question. "B-both, of course," he said, deciding to play whatever game Jackson was playing.

 

Jackson looked to him without expressionless. "Why?"

 

He frowned. "Gary Snyder grew up in the mountains. He loved the mountains - it's the only thing he knows - but did he love his lover more or less than the place?"

 

Jackson turned away again, his lips twitching slightly. "I guess we'll never know," he replied, shrugging.

 

"What do you think of?" he asked.

 

Jackson's head swivelled in his direction once again, but he didn't turn to look at the man, too afraid of what he'd find. "The lover. I wonder if he or she appreciated being compared to mountains, instead of jewelry and flowers like other poets would've done."

 

"Why do I have a feeling that you're lying?" he asked slowly as he looked down at the sketchbook in his hands. "Not about what you think of, but more of why you think of the lover. No - wait. Don't tell me. I'll tell you why I think of both. Like I said, Mr. Snyder grew up in the mountains. He loves it, and lived well there. It may or may not have been kind to him, but he thrived there. He built a home there - and maybe even a family - so he chose to compare the two things he knows and loves. What makes me think about both is that - somewhere along the way, he loses the lines that separate the two entities and we, as readers, don't know where one begins and the other ends. Why did the lines become blurry? Where did they get blurry? Why do we have lines to begin with?"

 

Jackson was quiet the entire time he went on his spiel, studying him closely, then he let out a soft huff of laughter. "I see why he listens to you more than everyone else."

 

"Who?"

 

"The lover," Jackson replied, standing back up. "The answer you so desperately seek, Mr. Park, is deep, deep under the mountains."

 

He looked out at the mountains and scoffed. "Don't worry. I have no intention, nor the power, to move mountains or the lover, Mr. Wang."

 

"You may not have the intention, but you hold more power than you think," Jackson said before he turned and walked away, stalking back towards the chateau.

 

He stared at the man's back until he disappeared around the hedges of the garden. You hold more power than you think?

 

He scoffed again.

 

Yeah, right.

Chapter Text

At precisely a quarter before twelve, Kookie came to him. He was just putting the finishing touches on his sketch when the guard called to him.

 

"Master Jinyoung, it's nearly time for you to see Master Jaebum," the man informed him.

 

"What do you think, Kookie?" he asked, holding up his sketchbook for the man to examine.

 

"Er… it's beautiful," Kookie stuttered, looking between the landscape and the sketchbook. "I do think the vineyard would've been a nice touch though."

 

He shook his head. "All I care about are the mountains. They hold too much and ask for not much in return."

 

Kookie nodded. "Yes, they do, so if that's the case. You captured it perfectly."

 

He smiled at the man. "Thank you," he said, standing up. He was dusting himself of when he heard someone approaching. He looked  up towards the garden and knew without even seeing that it was Jaebum.

 

Kookie on the other hand though tensed up and only relaxed when Jaebum appeared where Jackson disappeared. "Boss," he greeted Jaebum with a nod.

 

"I'll take it from here," Jaebum said dismissively, his eyes never leaving his.

 

Kookie nodded and without a word, walked back towards the house.

 

When the man was out of earshot, Jaebum was on him, kissing him fervently.

 

"I missed you," the man groaned between heated kisses. "I couldn't wait any longer to see you."

 

His heart melted as he melted into the man. "I was about to come to you."

 

"I know, but I couldn't wait anymore. I had to see you," Jaebum said, nipping at his jaw.

 

He sighed, tilting his head to away to give Jaebum room. "I need you. This damn plug is so uncomfortable."

 

Jaebum chuckled, straightening to pull him close. "Oh, no, Jinyoung. You're keeping that in."

 

He looked at the man in shock and dismay. "What?"

 

"I'll give you a choice," Jaebum said smirking.

 

"How generous," he replied sarcastically. "Go on."

 

"You suck me off now and keep the plug in, I'll fuck you to sleep later tonight, or I fuck you now and you sleep with the plug in."

 

He groaned. He was uncomfortable with the plug in wide awake, he couldn't even begin to imagine trying to sleep with the thing in. He smiled lasciviously. "Can I change your mind?" he asked leaning in to kiss Jaebum.

 

The man laughed, artfully dodging his invasion. "No."

 

He huffed, pouting. "Fine," he said, reaching for Jaebum's belt. "Dodge me later and I'll fuck you instead."

 

"Promises, promises," the man said laughing.

 

He reached between them and grasped Jaebum by the shaft. The man hissed a breath and he smiled in satisfaction. "As much as I want to tease you for making me walk around with this thing so far up my ass I could almost taste it, we need to make this fast."

 

Jaebum frowned at him, grasping his hands. "Why?"

 

"I want to finish this sketch before the sun goes down further and the  lighting changes."

 

Jaebum arched a brow before he pulled away completely. "Am I an obligation to you, Jinyoung?" the man asked, his jaw tightening slightly.

 

The question rocked him… or rather how the question was asked. He frowned. "No. No, of course not," he denied quickly.

 

Jaebum turned away, buckling his belt. "I… I don't want to be an obligation. I want you to want me, Jinyoung. If you don't want me, then you don't have to act like you do."

 

Before he could stop himself, he threw his arms around the man's waist. "I do want you. I didn't mean that how it sounded." Some of the tension in Jaebum's frame drained away, but he could sense some it lingering beneath the surface, so he continued. "I just… I wanted to give you the sketch when I was done," he said, planting kisses on the man's back. "It's kind of hard not to want you, Jaebum. Aside from having your plug in me, I do want you. I always want you."

 

Jaebum slowly turned in his arms and studied his face.

 

"As much as your world scares the shit out of me, I can't help wanting you as much as I do," he confessed.

 

Jaebum kissed him fiercely. "Jinyoung, as long as you stand by side, I will protect you with my life. You have nothing to be afraid of."

 

Is that what you told Nayeon? he wanted to ask, instead he nodded. "I know, but I'd rather not put you in that position. Whatever it is you do, Jaebum I can turn a blind eye, but losing you is something I can stand for."

 

Jaebum didn't reply. The man simply nodded. "I can think of a better position to put you in."

 

He smiled playfully. "Really?" he asked, sinking to his knees. "Does it look something like this?"

 

A deep, rumbling groan escaped Jaebum as he nuzzled his nose into the man's groin, nipping at his cock through the thin material of his dress pants. Although he was the one on his knees, Jaebum was the one trembling beneath his touch, and it was empowering. Encouraged, he continued where he had left off a few minutes earlier of pulling the man's pants down.

 

He had just begun to reach into Jaebum's pants when he looked up and their eyes met. What he saw made him gasp.

 

Lust or love? he wondered. He mentally shook himself. It was useless to wonder, so he decided on lust. It was easier to handle.

 

He reached into Jaebum's pants and wrapped his fingers around his cock, marvelling at the sheer size of it. Soft as velvet and yet, hard as a rock.

 

Saliva pooled beneath his tongue. He wanted it in his mouth so badly, his heart was pounding furiously in his chest.

 

He licked his lips before he leaned in and licked a long fat stripe from base to tip, moaning. No matter how many times he's done it, he couldn't get over how addictive the man tasted or smelled. Musky, heady, unique, needy...

 

"You taste so fucking good," he moaned more to himself, but he felt Jaebum's breath hitch and his thigh tremble.

 

"Don't tease me, Jinyoung. I'm barely holding on."

 

"I've never asked you to hold back on me," he answered before enveloping the tip of the man's cock with his lips.

 

Jaebum's eyes lit up. "Then hold on to me," he said, burying a hand in his hair. With the other hand, Jaebum pressed his cock to his cheek sliding out before pushing in again. He repeated the action several times, hissing.

 

Precum dripped on his tongue and he moaned, holding on to Jaebum by the thighs. He could imagine the image he was making for Jaebum. On his knees, eyes on Jaebum, and the outline of the man's cock on his cheek.

 

Sinewed muscle quieted beneath his palms and he felt powerful. His cock was hard as a rock between his thighs. His balls hung heavy, ready for release.

 

Experimentally, he slid his hands up Jaebum's thighs, feeling the power there and pulling from it. He came around the man's hips, not guiding, but just feeling.

 

He slid around and moved closer to the man's hands grasping himself. He didn't take back control. Instead, he moved further down, cupping balls and squeezes gently.

 

On the outstroke, he slid a finger under Jaebum's balls and pressed down on his perineum, applying much needed pressure, and stimulating it where he knew the pleasure would intensify for Jaebum. On the upstroke, Jaebum's cock twitched in his mouth and the man grunted deeply. The muscles of his thighs quivered and quaked beneath his palm.

 

He couldn't help but smile around the cock in his mouth.

 

He pulled away and looked into Jaebum's eyes, massaging his balls. A thin transparent thread of saliva and precum connected them.

 

"Stop holding back," he hissed, challenging the man.

 

With a growl, Jaebum pulled him in and slammed deep, gagging him. Tears filled his eyes, but he didn't look away from Jaebum. He took everything Jaebun had to offer.

 

"Is this what you want?" the man growled, holding him down.

 

He nodded as much as he could, moaning. He tried to relax his throat - tried to take Jaebum in deeper.

 

Jaebum pulled back until just the tip of his cock lay on his tongue.

 

He tasted the man's desire for a second before he was filled again. Again and again, Jaebum slammed deep into his throat, holding for about two seconds before pulling back, only long enough for him to breathe before slamming back in.

 

"Touch yourself," Jaebum groaned. "We go down together."

 

His cock twitched painfully in his pants. He fumbled with his pants, pulling it down enough to pull his cock out. He didn't have to look at it to know it was angry shade of red, begging for release.

 

He pulled at it once, and whimpered at the shot of pain and pleasure that tingled up his spine.

 

"Keep going," Jaebum growled.

 

He obeyed without question until the pain subsided and pleasure took over. He tugged furiously, almost losing his balance on his knees, and the plug shifted slightly, pressing down on his prostate.

 

So close.

 

He pressured in Jaebum's perineum gently and that was all it took.

 

"Jinyoungie," the man groaned, slamming deep once more before pulling out, jerking his cock. "Open up, baby."

 

He opened his mouth and Jaebum pressed his cock on his bottom lip still tugging at his cock.

 

His balls cried out and the first string of his cum shot out on the grass below them.

 

Jaebum groaned, tilting his head back and a jet of cum hit his tongue. The sudden burst of salt and sweetness hit his senses like a shot of tequila and he moaned, poking his tongue out, ready to catch more as he came blindly.

 

"Fuck," Jaebum hissed, spraying more of his cum into waiting mouth.

 

Finally, the man stopped ejaculating and he wrapped his lips around his cock, sucking for more until he hissed.

 

"Enough, Jinyoung," Jaebum said pulling away.

 

He whined.

 

"You need to eat something other than my cum," the man teased, eyes shining brightly.

Chapter Text

The afternoon sun found them seated on a large mat in the middle of eighty hectares of vines. He and Jaebun sat beside each other, while Jackson sat opposite from them with the children.

 

His idea of a picnic was cold chicken sandwiches, cans of cheap sodas, and maybe some cupcakes or brownies. What was in the center of the mat was an array of all kinds of meat, pasta, pickled treats, breads, cakes, and three bottles of wine straight from the vineyard.

 

At least there's cupcakes.

 

Jaebum picked up a bottle of red wine and he couldn't help but notice that this was the most relaxed he's ever seen the man. Before today, he'd never seen Jaebum in distressed jeans and a loose white shirt. His hair was all over the place, hanging loosely over his forehead and wind-blown, and his eyes were twinkling.

 

The man poured a glass of wine and handed it to him.

 

He took a sip and closed his eyes, appreciating the rich flavor.

 

"It's a bit drier," Jaebum said, smiling.

 

He was about to take another sip when he looked up at the audience before him. Youngjae looked like he was about to burst into tears, while Yugyeom was looking between him and Jaebum curiously. Jackson, on the other hand, was looking at Jaebum with a mixture of disbelief and confusion.

 

"Youngjae, are you okay?" he asked the little boy.

 

Youngjae flinched slightly, dropping his gaze to pick at his food with disinterest, so he looked over at Jaebum, who was watching his son closely as well. He reached out and touched Jaebum's arm, urging him to speak to his son.

 

"Youngjae-ah," he called.

 

The reaction Jaebum received was immediate. The little boy snapped his gaze up at his father. His eyes wide with alarm and fear.

 

He couldn't begin to comprehend why Youngjae was so afraid of his father when Jaebum seemed to not only love him deeply, but was just as protective of him.

 

The silence was broken when Jackson's phone began to ring and he excused himself. Jaebum watched as Jackson walked away and he followed suit. He watched Jackson listen for a moment before replying in a Chinese dialect he couldn't decipher before the man turned to Jaebum. They began to talk in Chinese and he looked away, giving up on trying to translate a language he couldn't even begin to understand to look at Youngjae again.

 

Jaebum tensed beside him and he looked back at the man who nodded at his friend, standing. Jaebum smiled at his children gently, a deep contrast to his usual stern look.

 

He couldn't remember a time he saw a beast instead of the man in front of him now. All he could see was the bright light inside Jaebum shining through the cracks.

 

"I'll be back soon," Jaebum said to him. "We were supposed to go on a bike ride this afternoon, but you can go with the kids."

 

Despite not waiting Jaebum to leave, he nodded, feeling his heart sink.

 

With a warm squeeze to his shoulder, Jaebum walked away with Jackson following behind him closely. And his heart filled with hope that wherever the man was going he wouldn't come back in the a bad mood.

 

He turned back to the boys and decided to speak to Youngjae. He looked over at Yugyeom. "Sweetie, why don't you go play on the swing?"

 

Yugyeom grinned before leaping to his tiny feet to running towards the swing hanging from a nearby elm tree. When he was sure Yugyeom was on the swing and going at a speed that was slow enough for his standards, he turned back to Youngjae.

 

He only had a few days left and he was determined to keep his promise to Youngjae. "Baby," he called to the boy, patting his lap.

 

Youngjae didn't hesitate to crawl around the food and sit in his lap.

 

He wrapped his arms around the boy, resting his chin on his tiny shoulders. "Are you alright?"

 

Youngjae nodded.

 

"Will you tell me if something is wrong?"

 

Youngjae paused for a second before nodding again slowly.

 

"Are you afraid of your father?" he asked.

 

Youngjae looked towards the path that Jaebum walked down.

 

"Are you?" he pressed.

 

Youngjae bit his lip.

 

"You can tell me. I promise I won't tell anyone."

 

Youngjae turned his head to regard him before he nodded.

 

"Can you tell me why?"

 

Suddenly, the boy's eyes filled with tears and his heart tore into a million tiny shards. He turned Youngjae in his arms and the boy sobbed painfully.

 

"It's okay. Don't cry," he said, rubbing soothing circles on his back. "Whatever it is, we'll work it out together."

 

Yugyeom walked up behind Youngjae and wrapped his arms around them tightly. "He won't ever hurt us, Hyung," the younger boy said sadly. "He loves us."

 

Youngjae frowned before turning and wrapping his arms around his brother sighing. Afterwards, Youngjae didn't say a word and frustrated, he let it go.

 

Finally, after a while, they were done eating and a manservant from the house named Henry came to them. He was quite young and handsome, if he were to say so.

 

"Would you like to pick some grapes?" he asked the children kindly.

 

He looked over at the boys and his heart warmed when the gloom and sadness disappeared from Youngjae's eyes. His face was lit up with so much excitement, it was almost blinding. It was hard to believe that such a sunny personality was underneath, darkened into silence.

 

When Youngjae turned to him to silently ask for permission, he was nodding his head in approval before their eyes even met. Half an hour later, they were under vines of grapes, eating more than they were harvesting. He had taken a bottle of water with him, so whenever the boys found a fat grape they wanted to eat, they would bring it to him and he would wash it before they slipped it into their mouths.

 

After a few hours of this, he made the children give up their baskets of fruits to Henry, too afraid that too much of it would upset their stomachs. Kookie came for them along with two other guards and took them to the beach.

 

"The chateau is close to the Napa River. We can ride along the Vine Trails, cross over the river to get to Tulocay Creek."

 

He was already exhausted, but he had seen Yugyeom’s face light up. Four bicycles were brought them - one with a carriage at its tail. They cycled along a path until they came to a bridge where they stopped to watch the rushing water under, then continued. It was wonderful, spending time with the boys, but the plug was beginning to become highly uncomfortable, and his thoughts kept cycling back to Jaebum.

 

After about twenty minutes of leisure cycling, Youngjae began to get tired and they stopped. Kookie made a call and a car came around to take them to the creek. They had a fun afternoon playing in the sand and splashing around on the shore before the sun began to wane.

 

The sun had been hot and all three of them were near falling asleep by the time they got back to the chateau. His body was hurting a little bit more than usual and he fell on his bed, falling asleep almost as soon as his head hit the sheets.

Chapter Text

It was nearly midnight by the time he returned to the chateau. He had spend as much of the day with Jinyoung and the boys, but an unscheduled urgent meeting had kept him away for most of the day.

 

HE didnt want to turn the light on, so he took a quick shower and turned in. He lay beside Jinyoung, his heart beating just a little too fast. Spending the last night with Jinyoung had been the best sleep he’d gotten in as long as he could remember. The windows were open, so the cool summer breeze was coming in softly, but when he pulled Jinyoung into his arms, his body was burning up and he was shaking with cold sweats.

 

“Jinyoung,” he called softly, nudging him.

 

Jinyoung came awake and smiled, a sweet, innocent smile.

 

It went straight to his heart.

 

“Jaebum?” he whispered.

 

“You’re burning up.”

 

Jinyoung laid his head on his chest. “It’s nothing. I always get fevers for no reason. I’ll just sleep it off,” he said drowsily. “I’ll be fine in the morning.”

 

The next morning came and a doctor had to be called. His fever had not gone down during the night despite the cold cloth he had continuously ran all over the man’s torso.

 

“I’m fine,” Jinyoung said to him with a flushed face and weakened tone. “This is nothing. I’ve ridden out worst fevers than this. It’s probably just too much sun. I usually get better after taking a couple of painkillers.”

 

He sighed. The casual way he was dismissing his illness made him think of his lonely upbringing. “How hard was growing up for you?”

 

Jinyoung shrugged. “Hard is not the word I would use. I moved around a lot, and I was angry most of the time. That’s what I remember most. Oh, and I also felt abandoned… A lot, but you know, I didn’t take it personally, at least I tried not to.” The man shrugged again. “I told you before that my parents passed away and my sister put me in the system when I was about Youngjae’s age, right?” he asked, looking straight at him.

 

He nodded. This wasn’t the time to tell Jinyoung that he’d done some research and found his sister, and that the woman he had gave up his seat to at the gala was his niece.

 

“Basically,” he continued, “ I was ruining her life. My parents had kicked her out for having a kid at a young age. When they passed, she was my only living relative, so I was given to her. She didn’t want me and she was already struggling. I don’t really hold it against her, but when I found out that things got better for her, a lot better, and yet she never came for me, it really hurt.” Jinyoung swallowed hard.

 

In that moment, he wanted to kill that shallow creature who had abandoned its own sibling.

 

“I was about thirteen and I’d just been moved away again out of a foster home for no reason. That was when I decided I wasn’t going to move again, or depend on anyone else. It was easy to not be adopted, if you were a raging teenager who had been rejected a couple of times already. So I played the part of the troubled teenageruntil I met Mark. Remember Mark? He was the one that opened the door when you came to our apartment.”

 

He nodded, jealousy beginning to take over as he recalled the cute blonde. “Are you in love with him?”

 

Jinyoung looked at him with shock and slight disgust on his face. “God, no! He’s my hyung. Anyways I don’t know what the hell he saw in me, but from the first day we met, he decided I was going to be his best friend. I don’t think I even had a choice. In time, he became like a real hyung to me. The hyung I never had.”

 

He could hear a slight break in Jinyoung’s voice, so he rubbed gently down the man’s back.

 

Jinyoung turned to look at him as if searching for something in his eyes. “That was a long answer to a short question, wasn’t it? I’m sorry.”

 

He ran his fingers through Jinyoung’s short hair, shaking his head. “I don’t mind. Jackson is that way to me. I lost my mother at a young age too.” He hesitated, wondering whether to just gloss over it all like he had done with everyone else or tell Jinyoung outright, but then decided to just say it as it was. He’d never spoken to anyone about it, but even if it all ended in a week with Jinyoung, he wanted the man to know his biggest secret. “My father killed her.”

 

Jinyoung went completely still.

 

“He thought she was cheating on him, so he strangled her to death right in front of me. I hated him for it until the day he died. He literally threw her away and pretended she had run back to South Korea. He got away with murder. For years, I wondered if karma would get him. It took its sweet time, but it did. He suffered for nearly two years with cancer. By the time he died, the disease had worn him down to a bag of bones and skin. There was so little flesh on his face left, that when he died he had a permanent grimace on it. On his deathbed, he cried.” He shook his head. “The fucking bastard wanted to go on living even with all the pain. I gave him a lavish funeral, but I didn’t shed a fucking tear.”

 

Jinyoung snuggled even further into him, trying to provide as much comfort as he could and it made him breathe a little easier after the confession. “You and Jackson are really close too?”

 

“Having Jackson by my side when I was growing up made it all easier, so I more than understand your relationship with Mark.”

 

“You know, there’s a saying that goes in your household, that he is the only one you listen to,” Jinyoung said.

 

He smiled. “Really?”

 

“Yup, and I understand why that would be the case, but when I mentioned it to him, he confused me even more.”

 

“Why? What did he say?”

 

“He said, and I quote, ‘Jaebum listens to everyone.’ I’m still not exactly sure what he meant by that.”

 

“Me neither,” he said “One would hope that with how little he speaks around others that he would at least make himself a little clearer when he does speak, but he’s a law unto himself. For the most part, he can’t be bothered what people think about him.”

 

“What about his family?” Jinyoung asked.

 

He scowled.

 

Jinyoung immediately rushed into apologizing. “I’m sorry if that’s too personal.”

 

“No, it’s not that. I’m just wondering how much to say. In my world, less is always more. His mother moved him from HongKong to New York when he was about ten. All I can say is that he has no need to be by my side. His family is fabulously wealthy, but the fact that he chooses to… It maybe a little far-fetched for you, but there is some truth in there. I do listen to him. I’m hot-tempered and rash, and he keeps me on the straight and narrow.”

 

Jinyoung sighed, settling back into his side. “I wish Mark was that sane. If I listened to even half of what he says, I’d probably be in jail by now. He’s a little bit insane… okay, no. He’s a lot insane.”

 

He laughed, tightening his arms around the man.

 

Suddenly, his phone rang and he picked it up to see that it was a text from Jackson. “Great. Your doctor is here.”

 

Jinyoung groaned beside him. “I don’t need a doctor.”

 

“Don’t be a baby.” He threw the covers away from Jinyoung and found him in only in the shirt he was wearing. “Are you still wearing the plug?” he asked. He could practically see the blush travel up Jinyoung’s chest. Feeling devilish, he tugged Jinyoung by the legs to the edge of the bed and started to push the shirt up, exposing Jinyoung’s cock. He couldn’t resist the lure of it as it began to twitch with interest. He began to pepper kisses along Jinyoung’s inner thigh, working his way up to where the plug was peeking out from between Jinyoung’s ass cheeks. He manipulated Jinyoung’s legs to bend at the knee, opening the man up and giving himself room to work. Experimentally, he tapped on the flat end of the plug, earning himself a soft moan from Jinyoung. He leaned in and tongued Jinyoung under the man’s balls.

 

“This is not how you treat someone who’s ill,” Jinyoung whimpered.

 

“It’s just an incentive for you to get better quickly,” he said before taking a nip at the tip of the man’s cock. He had every intention to stop, but he soon got carried away when Jinyoung began to squirm under his ministrations.

 

The man’s breathing was coming in hard and heavy, but just as he began to suck long and hard on his cock, there was a knock at the door.

 

He stilled then, but Jinyoung wrapped his legs around his neck, holding him in place.

 

“No,” he said, “I’m fine. I don’t need a doctor. Send him away and carry on with what you were doing.”

 

He wrestled out of Jinyoung’s hold and slipped a pair of shorts on him. “Come in,” he called. Just as he threw the covers over Jinyoung, the doctor came in, along with Margaret.

 

He sat by the bed in a chair as the good doctor examined Jinyoung.

 

When he was done checking over Jinyoung, his diagnosis was simple. “He’s showing signs of heat stroke, but with a few days rest indoors, he should be better,” the elderly man said. He prescribed some drugs for Jinyoung and went on his way.

 

“Chicken soup and Irish soda bread is on its way up for you,” he told the man.

 

Jinyoung pouted, reaching up to kiss him and his heart ached. “I can’t stay in bed for too long, so please don’t make me. This is my first time in the Valley and aside from this opportunity, I don’t know if or when I’ll ever get the chance to come again. I want to explore the city with you and the boys.”

 

“Well, get better quickly then, and you will get to.”

Chapter Text

He did get better and they did have a great time exploring the tiny city of Napa and the river, but Jaebum had to leave two days earlier for an urgent appointment in Atlanta, and he was left with the boys. If he had to leave it had to be the next day. Otherwise, he would never have the guts to make a painful decision. He had packed the night before, but he couldn’t sleep so he called Mark.

 

“Have you spoken to the boys?” he asked.

 

He shook his head, trying to hold back the tears that threatened to overwhelm him.

 

“You’re shaking you head, aren’t you? I can’t you, you pabo, ” he stated.

 

The insult somehow brought a smile out of him. “No, I haven’t,” he answered on a sigh. “I’ll do that tomorrow morning.”

 

“What about him ?”

 

“He left already. All he said was that he would see us back in New York.”

 

“How was your last week with him?”

 

He told Mark the truth, and this time he couldn’t hold back the tears. “I think I’m in love with him.”

 

“So why are you leaving?”

 

“I can’t see clearly with Jaebum. For starters, his world is not one I could ever be fully be a part of, and I know he cares about me, but how far is he willing to go?”

 

“Have you talked to him about any of this?”

 

“So that I can shatter my own heart more in the process than it already is?”

 

Mark didn’t say a word.

 

“I shouldn’t have agreed to this one week. It was a fucking mistake.”

 

“Did you enjoy your time with him?”

 

“I never wanted it to end.”

 

“But now reality is calling. If I were you, I would stay and damn the consequences to hell, but that’s where we’re different. You didn’t grow up using your heart because you didn’t have that luxury. It had to be ignored so that you could see through the hurt. I understand that, but even so, don’t you think a broken heart is worth risking for this beautiful thing you have?”

 

“Oh God, Mark! What do I do?”

 

“I can’t tell you what to do, babe. You know what I would do. I would only leave when leaving is no longer an option.”

 

“What do you mean?”

 

“I mean I’d go when leaving is the only option on the table. Then no matter what happens, I’d never regret my choice.”

 

He fell asleep with Mark’s words echoing in his head, but he realized he wasn’t Mark. He couldn’t play around with his heart.

 

The next morning, he went to Yugyeom’s room and got the boy before they went to Youngjae’s room. He waited until Yugyeom was cuddled up to his older brother before he sat on the bed, so they were both in his line of vision.

 

Youngjae’s smile was so sweet and so unsuspecting that he almost didn’t continue with his announcement. For a while, he was unable to speak. Then, he took a deep breath.

 

The boys had Jaebum to take care of them, but he only had himself. “I have something to tell you boys, so listen carefully, okay?” When they nodded, he swallowed around the hard lump forming in the back of his throat. “I’ve loved being your nanny so much. You don’t know how much. You boys have been so wonderful, and you’re both amazing, but I need to leave.”

 

Yugyeom looked at him in confusion, but Youngjae’s smile died. He looked completely desperate as he tried to sit up and look for his notepad and pen.

 

The moment he saw tears falls from the boy’s eyes, he turned his face away to hide his own. He quickly dried his eyes and blinked a few times before he turned back to them to see what Youngjae was scribbling almost illegibly on the pad.

 

The simple Why? tore at his heart painfully.

 

How am I going to explain my heart to this little boy?

 

Is it Daddy?

 

His heart hammered in his chest as he shook his head. “No. No, of course not. Your father has been very kind to me.” He sighed. There was no way Youngjae could understand that he couldn’t go against the one person he had vowed to protect at all costs - himself. It would sound exactly the way it was - selfish and without much concern for the boys’ well-being.

 

“I’ll get you another nanny,” he promised desperately. “Someone much better than myself. You’ll love her. I promise -”

 

Youngjae looked at him with great distrust and betrayal in his eyes as he shrieked his rage, turning to gather Yugyeom in his tiny arms. When he tried to pull the boy into his arms, he scurried away, pulling his brother with him to the other end of the bed, so he sat there without a clue on what to do.

 

He was terrified beyond words that he was harming the boy permanently. He wished he had just kept his mouth shut. He wished he had waited until they got back to New York.

 

Youngjae wouldn’t stop crying, so eventually he stood up, thinking that maybe if he left, his absence would calm the boy even just a little. It broke his heart to leave them, but he didn’t know what else to do. Just as he made it to the door, he heard Youngjae’s voice again for the first time since the first day they met.

 

“Jinyoung-Hyung,” he cried out.

 

He froze. At first, he was sure his ears were playing tricks on him, so he spun on his heels to meet the boy’s gaze.

 

His face was soaked with tears. “Don’t go. Please? I’m scared.”

 

His knees nearly buckled. Somehow, he made his way across the bed. He knelt in front of the boys for a second before he pulled them into his arms. “Youngjae-ah,” he cried. “You’re speaking again.”

 

“I could always speak. I spoke to you the first day you came to the house.”

 

He wiped the boy’s tears from his face. “Then talk to me. What’s going on?”

 

The boy looked down at his little brother. “Go brush your teeth. I have an extra toothbrush in my bathroom.”

 

Yugyeom nodded his head before scampering off towards Youngjae’s adjoining bathroom.

 

When Yugyeom was safely in the bathroom and out of earshot, Youngjae turned back to him. “He killed Mama,” he said, barely able to catch his breath as the tears came pouring out of his eyes again.

 

“What do you mean? Who do you mean?”

 

“Daddy... Daddy killed Mama,” the boy sobbed.

 

He gasped feeling his heart fall into his stomach.

Chapter Text

Naturally, he didn’t leave the children in Napa Valley.

 

He came back to New York with them in a state of devastated shock. He didn’t want to believe it. He couldn’t wrap his head around baring his heart to a cold-blooded murderer. He had trusted Jaebum. The man had done the same and told him about his mother.

 

It can’t be.

 

A thousand and one thoughts and possibilities swirled in his head, but they all hinged on the only truth he could accept.

 

Youngjae was mistaken.

 

Jaebum was dangerous, in more ways than one, but there was no way he was going to accept that the man he had fallen for was heartless enough to murder his own wife - the mother of his own children - much less in front of his own child after suffering the same trauma.

 

Even so, he couldn’t deny that whatever Youngjae knew, had been severe and devastating enough that he had become speechless through sheer terror and will for almost a year.

 

He had asked Youngjae if he had been mistaken, but the boy told him he could prove it, if he just called his aunt So Yeon. For the sake of the children, they found her number and called her to come to the house.

 

Twenty minutes later, she came into the room. Her eyes immediately fell on the boys and they ran into her arms.

 

His eyes followed So Yeon as she sat on the edge of the couch. “Is it true?” he asked her.

 

Gravely, she nodded in response and his head lowered to the floor. His brain refused to give his heart a pass.

 

“It happened in Jaebum’s study. Jaebum and Nayeon got into a really big argument in his study. It was so bad that Nayeon picked up Jaebum’s gun and forced him out of the room. The surveillance video showed that Jaebum came back and shot her.”

 

His head was close to exploding, but he forced himself to keep calm. “A video?”

 

“That was how Youngjae found out. I have a spy in Jaebum’s organization, so when he saw the video, he recorded it with his phone, and sent it to me through one of Youngjae’s stuffed animals. We couldn’t retrieve it in time before Youngjae fiddled with the phone and saw it. When I came by to meet Jaebum for the funeral, I got Youngjae alone and found out what had happened.”

 

He looked at Youngjae and the tears came afresh. “He’s just a child. How was he able to hold on this long without saying a word?”

 

“That’s what amazes me too. It must have scared him terribly. I’ve been working to gather enough evidence to take Jaebum down, so he agreed to hold on. He stopped talking because he was too scared to let the cat out of the bag. I'm so surprised he spoke now. He must trust you so much."

 

He suddenly felt so cold that he wrapped his arms around himself. "Why do you need to gather more evidence? Wouldn't the video be enough to convict Jaebum of murder? What is the word for killing one's wife? Uxoricide?"

 

So Yeon cracked an amused smile, nodding her before it fell and she shook her head. "You don't know Jaebum, do you?" she asked, stark fear in her eyes asked.

 

"If he finds out we have the video, he'll stop at nothing to get his hands on it and wipe out its existence, as well as everyone who knows about it. Even if it somehow finds its way to the authorities, he'll get away with it. His reach is not limited. He is in cohorts with the highest people in power. You should've realized by now that Jaebum is no ordinary man."

 

His eyes fell to the floor. "He is no ordinary man, but neither is he this cruel."

 

"Jinyoung, things happen that none of us ever intend, but with the right price, anyone can turn inhumanely cruel."

 

He thought back to what Jaebum had shared with him in Napa. The man had not given him details, but it didn't matter now any more than it did then. The emotions in Jaebum's eyes had told a story much more painful than the actual words and he knew deep in his heart that it was not a path Jaebum would've subjected his own children to.

 

"But he loved Nayeon and the boys…," he defended. "He would never do that to his own children."

 

"Jealousy. Guilt. Who knows? Except maybe Jackson and himself," So Yeon interrupted. "He's brutal. You're right in one thing though. He isn't heartless, but what's at stake is Nayeon's fortune that she left behind, which is just as vast, if not more, than his. It's easy to play the grieving widower. A little guilt doesn't seem like much of a price to pay."

 

So Yeon seemed to have all the answers, except for the one he wanted to hear, so he sank into his own thoughts. His entire body began to shake uncontrollably.

 

So Yeon was finished though. "Right now the only way he can have access to Nayeon's fortune is through the boys, so it only makes sense that he would take care of them and keep them safe. Nayeon had made it so that all her earnings, her life insurance, and her inheritance would be divided evenly between her children. If anything were to happen to them, they would go to charity."

 

He thought back to the time Jaebum had overreacted to him taking the boys out of the compound.

 

Did I confuse his reaction for care? He looked up and found So Yeon staring at him. "So what do we do now?" he asked.

 

She pursed her lips before answering. "Just continue like nothing happened. If Jaebum even so much as suspects anything is amiss, we're all in trouble. We'll be done for, and all the hard work we've put in so far will be a waste. If it's too much for you to handle, then save yourself. Quit and walk away."

 

Pretend like nothing happened? Jesus fuck, no wonder Youngjae stopped speaking.

 

The sound of screeching tires on asphalt came in through the open French doors and the four of them looked towards them.

 

So Yeon ran towards a window and peered out before turning back to him with panic-filled eyes. "Jaebum is here."

 

"He's not supposed to be back until tomorrow," he whispered, still stuck in a daze. His head felt too loaded with the information that was just dumped on him.

 

Youngjae instantly shot to his feet, grabbing for Yugyeom' s hand and it only occurred to him then why the boy's mood would instantly change around Jaebum.

 

So Yeon turned to Youngjae. "Jae-ah, take your brother and go back to your room. Lock the door," she ordered before walking towards him. She pulled out a 9mm pistol from her purse and shoved it into his hands. "Hold on to this. I'll be right back."

 

He stared at the cold, hard metal in his hands in alarm, but before he could ask what the hell he was supposed to do with it, So Yeon was out the door. A few moments later, she walked back into the room, tucking in what he knew for sure was another pistol into the waistband of the jeans she was wearing.

 

"Jaebum is on his way here," she said.

 

"Why the fuck do I need a gun?" he tried to ask with disgust, but his voice came out shaky.

 

"Most of the rooms in this house are monitored. He might've already caught on to us."

 

"That doesn't answer my -..."

 

He was interrupted when the door opened and Jaebum stepped in. The man looked around the room like a caged tiger ready to pounce.

 

Their eyes met and Jaebum jaw tightened before he spoke in a low growl. "Jinyoung, get the boys out of here."

 

Youngjae instantly burst into tears, pushing Yugyeom behind him as he sidled towards him. He stood and ran towards them before he, in turn, shoved them behind him.

 

Things happened very quickly after that.

 

So Yeon drew the pistol she had hidden in her pants and pointed it at Jaebum.

 

"No!" he yelled in panic before he could stop himself.

 

Jaebum's eyes were glued to So Yeon though. "What the fuck are you doing in my house?"

 

So Yeon glanced towards him and the kids. "Jinyoung, take the kids out of the room." When he hesitated, she screamed with a bone-chilling urgency, "Right now. Use the gun I gave you. Don't let anyone stop you. There's a car waiting outside."

 

Jaebum's eyes widened with panic as it swung in his direction. "No!" he said, shaking his head. "Jinyoung, I haven't given the security team any instruction. The moment they see you with a gun, you'll be shot. Please, don't."

 

"Jinyoung, get out of here."

 

He'd never felt more torn in his life than he did in that moment as he looked between So Yeon and Jaebum.

 

So Yeon glanced at him again. "Do you want to ruin those boys forever? This bastard killed my sister."

 

Jaebum looked at him with pain in his eyes. "Is that what she told you? And you believed her?"

 

"There's a video," he replied simply.

 

"Did you see it?"

 

He shook his head. "Youngjae saw it and that's why he decided to stop talking," he said more for himself than anyone else.

 

The expression on Jaebum's face fell into one of devastation as his eyes stayed centered on him.

 

He couldn't stand it. He felt himself weakening, so he did the only thing he could think of. He tightened his hand around the handle of the pistol and aimed it at the man.

 

Maybe it was his eyes, but he thought he saw Jaebum's eyes darken just a tad more and beginning to glitter with pain.

 

"It's easy to deceive a child with a video, Jinyoung. They don't know what can be done with a little editing," Jaebum said softly.

 

Things began to click in place then.

 

He took his first real breath in God knows how long as he found the answer he'd been waiting to hear. With shaky hands, he whirled on So Yeon, pointing the gun at her instead.

 

The woman's eyes shot open in shock, but they remained unfocused, batting around between him and Jaebum. "Are you fucking crazy? What are you doing?" she shrieked.

 

"I believe Jaebum," he said.

 

Youngjae began to tug at his pants. "No, Hyung," he wailed.

 

He glanced at the boy briefly. "Youngjae-ah, do you trust me?"

 

The boy nodded.

 

"Good. Now, take Gyeomie out of here. Run to your room, lock the door, and pull the covers over both of you."

 

Youngjae stared at him as silent tears streamed down his chubby cheeks.

 

"Go!" he screamed.

 

The little boy shook his head adamantly.

 

He supported the gun with both hands and silently regretted the times he had ignored Jaebum's warning to at least learn how to use it. Hopefully, he would be able to walk away today without getting himself killed.

 

"Jinyoung," Jaebum called, his voice breaking with the plea in it "Please, put the gun down and take my kids out of here."

 

He turned a helpless gaze at the man. "What about you?"

 

"I can handle myself. Just please. Take them out of here."

 

He shook his head. " You take them out."

 

Jaebum took a step towards him and So Yeon fired her gun at him. By some miracle, the bullet missed Jaebum and buried itself into the wall behind him. He cried out loud and the boys screamed.

 

"You think I'm fucking joking?" So Yeon screamed. Take another step and I swear to God, I will shoot you in the head, or maybe," she said slowly, turning the gun to point it at him instead.

 

His palms were sweating. His hands were shaking, and the gun no longer felt cold in his grip. He was fighting with all his strength to even keep from blinking, too afraid that if he did, he would lose everyone he was willing to protect. His knees were weak, trembling beneath his weight.

 

Jaebum's eyes hinted dangerously as it turned back to So Yeon.

 

The woman scoffed mirthlessly. "But, of course! You fucked him, didn't you?" she spat. Jealousy, pain and downright craziness lit her eyes. "You never could keep it in your pants, Jaebum. The only person you never wanted to fuck was me. Why? Why?"

 

Jaebum's head hung low. "I never loved you, So Yeon-ah."

 

"And all the other women you fucked? Did you love them?"

 

Jaebum didn't say anything.

 

"That's what I thought."

 

"You were like a little sister to me," he tried to reason.

 

"And Nayeon wasn't? I loved you! All that bitch ever did was focus on her career. She didn't even want to put it aside for her own children," So Yeon shrieked before turning hateful eyes at him. "And you! You stupid gold-digger whore. I should've known. I hope your betrayal haunts you. You're ruining the children's lives."

 

"You're the one destroying their lives," he yelled. "Put your fucking gun down."

 

He was angry at the fear she was subjecting the children too, but scared as hot tears blurred out his vision. He was resigned to the worst and he knew whatever happened, he wouldn't regret the decision he made in this room.

 

A door behind him flew open and gave a loud this against the wall. At the sound of a gun going off, his heart seized in his chest and he turned to see Jaebum fall to the floor. He didn't know how he did it, but he managed to squeeze the trigger of his own gun, shutting his eyes tightly.

Chapter Text

For a moment, all he could manage to think was how powerful the kick of the gun was as he staggered backwards, nearly stumbling on the children before he managed to gain his footing. His knees felt too weak to hold him up any longer, and he crumbled to the floor. His heart was pounding in his chest and his ears were ringing.

 

He would never know how long he stayed on the floor, but he felt as though the world had just collapsed at his feet. A hand eventually settled on his shoulder and he opened his eyes to see Jackson talking to him, concern clear on his face, but it was all white noise. His ears were still ringing. His entire body felt cold and empty.

 

He looked away from Jackson towards So Yeon. Amazingly, he had shot her in the eye. Blood was oozing out of the socket and trickling down her pale face to the floor. The floor under her was pooling blood and he didn't have to look to know that there was an exit wound far larger than the entry. 

 

Fuck, I'm a good shot.

 

He looked towards Jaebum, who was leaning up against the wall with a palm against his left shoulder. His white shirt was soaked with blood and the latent adrenaline kicked in. 

 

"Jaebum," he cried, scrambling off the floor to run to him.

 

The man's lips curved up into a pained smile. "You did good," he praised.

 

Just hearing his voice made breath a sigh of relief. "Are you okay?"

 

Jaebum groaned, straightening up a bit as he shook his head. "No, but I will be."

 

Kookie came rushing in with four other men on the security team carrying a gurney. Together, they hoisted Jaebum onto it and carried him out.

 

The obvious, excruciating pain on Jaebum's face was too much that he had to look away. He looked around the room searching. His mind was still racing, but he realized the kids were gone and he began to panic. 

 

"Where are the boys?" he asked urgently, whirling on Jackson. 

 

"Mr. Park took them to their rooms," Jackson answered, coming to stand in front of him. There was an odd expression on his face, but before he could question the man, Jackson offered him a smile. It was hesitant and small, but it was smile all the same. "Go. He'll need you when he gets out of surgery. I'll take care of the kids."

 

He nodded before he went out to the waiting SUV. In the car, he didn't know how he was holding on, but Jaebum held his hands the entire ride. Occasionally, the man would groan and his grip would tighten, but he still held on. When he could stand it no longer, he buried his face in Jaebum's neck.

 

"I'll be fine," the man said. "I promise you, I'll be fine."

 

He managed to get some words out around the lump of worry in his throat. "You better be, or I'll kill you myself. I heard I'm a pretty good shot."

 

Jaebum let out a pained chuckle before he hissed. "I've suffered worst."

 

"No more," he choked. "I couldn't stand it."

 

They reached the hospital in record time and Jaebum was taken immediately into the operating room. He sat outside the door, where he finally collapsed from exhaustion. 

 

It was there that he was able to through the events of the past few months. Spent and haunted by the fact that he had just shot a man in the head, he cried. 

 

He cried for Youngjae, who had kept a secret far larger than himself, living in fear of his own father. He cried for Yugyeom, who barely knew his own mother and lost her to the jealousy of her own sibling. He cried for himself. 

 

But mostly, he cried for Jaebum, who lost his wife and the mother of his own children because of that jealousy, and barely managed to save his children. 

 

Money and love. 

 

It can drive a person to madness. 

Chapter Text

He woke up a few hours after surgery to the face of an angel. His angel was asleep in a chair by his bed, laying his head on his folded arms. One of his hands holding his. He didn't want to wake the angel, but as soon as he shifted slightly, Jinyoung was alert and lifting his head.

 

At first, the angel seemed disoriented, but when he registered that he awake, his eyes nearly popped out of their sockets. 

 

"Jaebum," the angel gasped, his hands flying for his face. "Are you okay? How do you feel? Any pain? I can call a nurse."

 

A sudden fear gripped him and he held onto Jinyoung's retreating hand tightly. "I'm fine. It's not the first time I've been shot."

 

Jinyoung's brows knitted and he noticed the confession didn't sit well with the man, thus bringing him no comfort, so he quickly apologized. "I'm sorry," he said quietly, taking Jinyoung's hands in his. 

 

Jinyoung sighed heavily as he dropped his head on his chest. It was a lame attempt at hiding his tears, but he already knew. 

 

“How are Yugyeom and Youngjae?” he asked softly.

 

Jinyoung lifted his head and seemed relieved to talk about something else. “Physically? They’re fine, but I don’t know what’s going through Youngjae’s mind. He’s been very quiet and withdrawn.”

 

He closed his eyes as his eldest son’s horrified expression crossed his mind. When Jinyoung had turned the gun away from him and pointed it t So Yeon, Youngjae had been terrified. How scared Youngjae must have been for months. He wanted to kick himself for not paying more attention to his own child - his own children. They must have suffered… been deeply wounded at my inability to protect their mother. I’m so sorry, Nayeon. “Where are they now?”

 

“Jackson took them out a few hours ago for pizza, with a promise to bring them here when they were more calm and he’s explain things to them. They should be here any minute now. Hang on, let me call Jackson and find out.”

 

He watched with burning jealousy as Jinyoung fished his phone out of his pocket. “Why do you have Jackson’s number?”

 

“Do you really have the energy to argue with me?” Jinyoung asked, glaring at him. “Besides, this is neither the time nor place to discuss why I have Jackson’s number.”

 

He was about to protest, but Jinyoung lifted his phone to his ear, so instead he strained to hear Jackson through the little speaker of the phone.

 

“Where are you guys now?” Jinyoung asked, his eyes on him. “Ten minutes? Jaebum is awake. Yeah. He wants to see them. Okay, thanks.” He ended the call, only looking at the device briefly before looking back at him. “They ‘ll be here in ten minutes.”

 

He nodded his head. “Good. That gives me time to talk to you first.”

 

The man nodded silently, looking at him with enormous eyes. Hell, it made him want to do things to the man, but he needed to say a few things.

 

“Thank you for believing me,” he said quietly.

 

Jinyoung sighed, taking his hand in his. For a moment, he let the man toy with his fingers and no doubt process his thoughts, and waited. “I knew you would never have done that. Strangely, in that moment, all I could think of was the portrait in your bedroom. When I first saw it, I felt so ashamed of myself. I felt like I was intruding in on something that was Nayeon’s.”

 

He perked up to deny it, but Jinyoung shook his head as he picked up a finger to hush him.

 

“I know that she’ll always have a place in your heart that I will never fill because she’s the mother of your children. I’m not in the least bit jealous of that fact. In fact, I can respect it because she gave you two beautiful children that I will never be able to give you. If not for that portrait, I never would’ve believed in you. What I saw in that picture was happy family - not a broken one, and that was why I felt ashamed.”

 

He sighed, lifting Jinyoung’s hand to his lips. He placed a soft kiss on the man’s knuckles before he spoke. “I’ve been aware of Soyeon’s hand in Nayeon’s murder for quiet a while now. Aside from Nayeon, the boys and I, Soyeon had been in the house. She had taken a break from school and was visiting at the time. I had thought that she had gotten over her schoolgirl crush on me by then that when she came into the room to find me holding Nayeon, I didn’t even think about the possibility. I had left the room after the argument with Nayeon to calm down, but when I was coming back, I heard shots being fired so I began to run. I came into the room to find Nayeon lying on the floor. She was dead before I even reached her. She had been shot twice in the chest and once in the neck. The video Youngjae saw was probably edited to make it seem like I had left the room and came back to shoot her. The man you saw in the construction site was the one who shot them that night.”

 

Jinyoung remained silent as he spoke, still visibly shaken. “Why would she do such a horrible thing? To her own sister at that.”

 

“Sibling rivalry… Jealousy… A number of things. Nayeon was always their parents' favorite. There was never any questions about it, and when Soyeon realized it, it was too late. She had done too many unforgivable things. On top of it all, she was in love with me and I always had eyes for Nayeon alone. When Youngjae was born, I thought she had finally given up and moved on. She was in college at the time and had a boyfriend. She lived with us and took care of Youngjae well. Then Yugyeom was born, and everything went downhill. She tried to corner me one night and Nayeon had caught her in time. Their parents had her move back to South Korea and she stayed for a while. We forgave her, and she came back with Nayeon when she had stopped there for her world tour. That's… that's when everything happened. We didn't know that she had run away from home and was disowned. Her parents had made Nayeon their sole benefactors of their estates, and in the case of her death - the boys. She came in a sad third.

 

I guess, after a while, it became more about the money than me, and she knew that under no circumstances would I leave my children to her. She's their only living relative, so if I wasn't around, they would be - without contest.  She would have access to it all through them - mine, Nayeon's and her parents'. If she had been successful and the boys had believed I had murdered their mother, they would be more than willing to give her full access and lean on her. 

 

The cops have been working with me to investigate her since the day at the construction yard. It didn't take a bear to understand that you didn't like what you saw. I knew that eventually if I wanted to keep you, I would have to wash my hands off the dirt on it. For months now, I have been cleaning out the dirty money and giving it back through charities. I have nothing to fear now. My business are almost all legit and protected. The cops will be happy to see the real security footage of what happened the night Nayeon was killed… Now, kiss me." 

 

With everything on the table now, he needed to know they were okay and that Jinyoung wasn't leaving him.

 

The man gazed at him for a while before he jumped to his feet and came for him. Their lips crashed together in an almost desperate, teary-eyed kiss. 

 

"I've got one more confession," he said pulling away to look Jinyoung in the eyes.

 

The man backed away slightly. "What is it?"

 

"The night I took you to the Plaza, I knew your sister would be there and I was hoping you would both patch things up."

 

Jinyoung's eyes became impossibly wide. "You knew who my sister was?"

 

"Yeah," he said grimacing. "I had someone do some digging. I was trying to help. I thought it would be a great reunion and not the great fiasco it became."

 

Jinyoung sighed, laying his head on his shoulder and burrowing into his side on the tiny bed moving carefully not to hurt him. "I'm glad it happened the way it did. All my life, I had been chasing a dream and finally, I see it and her for what they are. Now, I'm even more grateful for what I do have now - Mark, Youngjae, Yugyeom, you, even Jackson and Bambam, as weird as that is."

 

He felt a smile tugging at his lips and gave into it before he thought about the fight it had led to. "I'm still sorry you had to go through that public humiliation. I swear you'll never have to go through something like that again." With his good arm, he pulled Jinyoung closer to himself, refusing to let go - at least for now.

 

Just as Jinyoung opened his mouth to say something, there was a knock at the door, so he got to his feet. With one last look, he said sighed. "Later," he promised before he walked away to answer the door. 

 

Yugyeom came bouncing into the room, followed by a more somber Youngjae. His heart ached in his chest as he watched his eldest child stand aloof, shuffling his feet as if unsure what to do with himself. He watched as Youngjae sucked his lower lip into his mouth. The last time he had seen that was when he had broken the news of Nayeon's passing. 

 

"Come here, Sunshine," he called softly. It was an endearment he realized he had used since Youngjae stopped speaking and guilt hit him square in the chest. 

 

He didn't have time to dwell on it though.

 

With a great big sob, Youngjae came running towards the bed, jumping on him with his tiny arms wrapping around him. 

 

Fuck! 

 

The pain that seared through him was like a jolt of electricity causing him to hiss in pain.

 

Youngjae withdrew slightly. "I'm sorry, Daddy. I didn't mean to hurt you. I'm so sorry."

 

"Hey! You didn't. It was nothing."

 

The little boy bit his lip. "It's all my fault."

 

 “No,” he said firmly. “It’s not your fault. None of this is your fault. Do you understand me?”

 

Youngjae looked at him with tear-filled eyes. “But I thought you killed Mama,” he sobbed, racked with guilt.

 

‘Hey,” he scolded softly, pulling his son close to his chest. “I loved Mama. I couldn’t have harmed a single hair on her head. She was my best friend - my only wife in the whole wide world, okay?”

 

He felt Youngjae nod his head, sniffling and wiping at his eyes and nose. A strong urge to hug both his sons filled him, but he knew he had to clear the air first, so he turned to Yugyeom and beckoned him with a finger. “Come here, baby.”

 

When he had both of them in his arms, he kissed them before burying his nose in their neck, breathing in their unique scents as they cried their tiny hearts out. When they were all cried out, Youngjae pulled away finally, twiddling his thumbs. 

 

"I know it isn't completely my fault," he said, looking like his tears were going to tear him apart again. "But after Auntie Soyeon showed me video, she said you wanted Mama's money and that you were going to kill us too. I was so scared. I wanted to leave, but I was scared for Yugyeomie too. She said if I called the police we would be separated, so I stayed quiet like she asked me to. She said, she would take care of us - love us, like Mama did."

 

“She lied, Youngjae-ah. Mama would never have left you and Gyeomie with me, if she thought you were unsafe with me, regardless of whether I am your father or not. She loved you with all her heart. I love you and your brother with all my heart. I would do anything for you. I would never harm you. My most precious memories are when I held you for the very first time and kissed your tiny feet. I promised myself that would do everything in my power to protect and love you both. You’re my sons - a part of me.”

 

Youngjae burst into a fresh fountain of tears. “I’m sorry, Daddy.”

 

He grinned through his own tears. “Can I tell you a secret?”

 

“What?”

 

“I think you found a brilliant solution to your problem, and I’m very proud of you.”

 

“What do you mean?”

 

“I mean you stopped speaking until you knew what was going on. To me that is the most intelligent thing a person your age has ever done. You didn’t know who you could trust so you just went silent and waited. If I had been in your shoes, I can only hope I would’ve done the same thing.”

 

Youngjae looked at him in confusion. “Why?”

 

“Because it was a really smart thing to do. You waited and didn’t react rashly to a difficult situation.”

 

“Really?”

 

“Absolutely.”

 

“So you’re not mad at me?”

 

He shook his head. “No, not at all. In fact, I’m impressed with you.”

 

Youngjae brightened and his heart melted. He really missed it when his son looked at him with such reverence and something deep inside him knew everything would be okay from here on out. “Really?”

 

“Really. Now, would you like to come lie down with me and Gyeomie?”

 

“Yup,” he said jumping back into his out-stretched arms. Carefully, he maneuvered himself beside him, wriggling his small body around until he found a comfortable position.

 

For the first time in months, he felt relaxed and happy. Right here with his sons lying on either of his sides like they used to do before Nayeon passed. He felt like he had finally come home, but a part of him felt like he was still missing something. Like a single piece of his puzzle was still missing.

 

He looked around the room in slight confusion. 

 

“Daddy?”

 

“Yes,” he answered Yugyeom, pulling himself back to his children. His youngest child was looking at him with sleepy eyes.

 

“Can you tell us the story about how you met Mama?”

 

He opened his mouth to tell them the familiar story, but no words could come out. He clenched his hands and took a deep breath, trying to find the strength to will the words out. Then Youngjae supported himself on one elbow to look at his younger brother over his chest. His wise son put his little palm on his cheek, brushing away a stray tear. “It’s okay, Daddy. I’ll tell him the story. I know it by heart. I always tell him the story every night, so I will never forget her.”

 

He couldn’t speak. He could only nod his head. He had never been this happy in his life. Never had everything been this good and Nayeon was not here to see it. He looked up at the ceiling of the room, trying to control his quaking heart.

 

Thank you, Yeonie. Thank you for giving me two precious hearts.

Chapter Text

He looked around the foyer. The table that had once held a vase of vibrantly colored flowers and pictures frames of the Im family was now covered with a white cloth. The window curtains were being drawn and from where he stood he could see servants in the drawing room, placing similar white sheets covering the furniture in there. 

 

"What do you mean, 'he's gone'?" he asked, unable to keep the rising panic to show in his voice. He had come running from the apartment after receiving his severance check from a courier. A large sum of fourteen million had been neatly typed onto a beautifully personalized, monogrammed check. He had known that eventually he and Jaebum would come to an end, but he didn’t expect Jaebum to do it like this. 

 

Today was supposed to be the day Jaebum was released from the hospital. He was supposed to cook an elaborate meal for him and the children. He was supposed to tell Jaebum how he felt. Instead, he was barely listening as Tzuyu explained to him that Jaebum had taken the children on vacation for an extended period of time after which he would be moving the main office from New York to South Korea. In other words, they were not coming back to New York.

 

His chest felt tight. He was so confused, and the room began to spin when he turned to leave, coming face to face with Jackson. “Jackson… Jaebum… No, Mr. Im…” He was about to fall into a heap on the floor, his knees unable to hold him upright any longer, but Jackson caught him before he bruised his knees on the tiled floor.

 

“...Is gone,” Jackson replied softly. “Was there something missing in the package? If there was, please let Tzuyu know and she’ll arrange for it to be sent to you. Your belongings are being transferred as we speak back to your apart-...”

 

“Where is he?” he asked sharply, cutting the man off.

 

“Like I said - gone,” Jackson said calmly. “He might never come back.”

 

His heart felt like it had been ripped from his chest as the word sank in.

 

He left me.

 

Jackson reached into the breast pocket of his suit jacket and extracted a cream-colored envelope. "This is for you. I was going to have sent to you later today, but since you're here - no sense in doing so," the man said with an indifferent shrug, handing it to him.

 

Numbly, he took the envelope and opened it. A part of him wanted to tuck it away and never read it, too afraid of what he'd find, but another part of him was curious. Inside was a neatly folded parchment paper. 

 

This is it. This is goodbye. He fucked me out of his system and this is his way of severing ties., he thought as he unfolded the letter.






Jinyoung,

 

The past few months with you have been the absolute happiest months of my life. From the moment I looked up and our eyes met, you have never been far from my mind, and it didn't take long before I was fighting to keep you out of my heart. I love you. I know it's stupid to say it like this, but I think I've loved you for a long time, and was just too stupid to realize it. Now that I have, I'm scared. 

 

Love is a very curious emotion. When I didn't realize the intensity of my affection, I feared nothing, except the safety of my children. I had the mindset that as long as I covered my tracks well, I'd never have to worry about the consequences. Adding you into the mix, throw everything out. If I'm to keep my promise to keep you safe, I have a lot of cleaning up to do. I don't deserve an angel like you, but I will do my damndest to try.

 

This is not goodbye, Jinyoungie. This is "I'll see you later." We will see each other again. I won't ask you to wait for me because I know, deep in your heart, I'm there. And even if you don't wait for me, I'll wait for you. I'll wait forever, if I have to. 

 

With all my heart,

 

Im Jaebum

 





A loose sob escaped him as confusion and anguish settled in. It wasn't goodbye, but Jaebum's letter didn't give him much hope to hold on to either. 

 

After all they've been through, Jaebum walked away - taking everything with him, including his heart. He didn’t know how he got back to the apartment, but when he did, Mark had bundled him up in blankets and cuddled him until finally, he collapsed from exhaustion.

Chapter Text

One year later

 

"Jinyoung, are you almost ready?" Mark called from the other side of the door..

 

Sighing, he looked at himself in the full-length mirror one last time, straightening the bow at his neck. “Yeah. I’ll be out in a minute.”

 

 “Okay. I’ll be waiting in the car.”

 

He didn’t bother to reply. First one in, first one out. Some things just never changed, he mused for a second before memories washed over him. He looked over at his dresser where Jaebum’s letter was tucked between his socks. 

 

A year, and not a word. He should burn the letter. He should move on. He could think of a million reasons why he should hate Im Jaebum and one to forget everything that happened a year ago, but none of them really held any weight in his heart. As much as he tried to move on, nobody moved him the way Jaebum did. 

 

Stop it. You promised Mark. You promised you would move on after a year, he thought as he mentally shook himself out of his head. He turned and walked out of his bedroom. Later. Later after the gala. After the gala, I’ll burn it, and put it all the rest.

 

A year ago, Mark had given him a two weeks before the elder nearly broke his door down in his anger. 

 

"Get out!"

 

"What?" he asked in confusion as he buttoned his pants after he had unbuttoned it to change into his pajamas.

 

"Get out!"

 

"Are you kicking me out of our apartment?"

 

"Yes."

 

"Why? On what grounds?"

 

"I'm not going to let you fall into a cycle where you work yourself to death. I can't stand around and pretend with you that you're okay when you're clearly not."

 

He frowned. "I really am okay, Hyung."

 

"No. No, you aren't. You can fool Mina and everyone else in the office, but you can't fool me, Park Jinyoung. I know you. You're diving into work to forget him, but you can't, can you?"

 

Tears began to prick at his eyes, so he turned away and began to unbutton his pants again. "No. No, I'm not," he denied, even as his heart began to stutter. "I'm okay."

 

"You're a damn liar, Park Jinyoung. You fell in love with him and he broke your heart when he left you behind. Don't think for one second I don't hear you through the walls crying at night. You're not okay, and I can't let you go on like this. I know he gave you more than enough to live comfortably. I also know you haven't touched that money. I'm not stupid."

 

"Yes," he hissed, whirling on his best friend. "Yes! I fell in love with him and I was a fool to think I could walk away unscathed. Yes, he broke my heart when he left. I'm devastated. And yes, every night I crawl into bed and cry myself to sleep. I wake up and try to pretend I don't know and Im Jaebum. I go to work and dive into it, so I don't have to think. So I don't have to wonder if he was just toying with me or why everyone I love, leaves me  You're right. I'm not okay." Finally, all the pain and anguish of lost love tore him apart until he was a mess of broken sobs and tears, and he was shouting at Mark. "But I also know that he loves me."

 

"Then, don't tear yourself apart while waiting. If he really loves you, I'm sure that's not what he wanted you to do," Mark said softly. "Wait for him, but don't do it like this, Jinyoungie. I'm here. I'm not going anywhere."

 

His legs crumbled beneath him and he fell on his bed. In the blink of an eye, Mark was beside him, holding him as he cried one last time. 

 

"I'm so sorry, Hyung," he sobbed.

 

"It's okay. You don't have to apologize, but you don't get to say that to me. I'm never gonna leave, Jinyoung. Ever. You're stuck with me. Even when you die, you're soul will be bound to mine. We're a team, remember?"

 

He chuckled through his tears. "Yeah. We are."

 

"Damn fucking right, we are."

 

They sat there for a while until he got his breathing and tears under control again, then Mark leaned away. "Promise me something, Jinyoungie."

 

"What?"

 

"Promise me- a year. You'll wait for only a year, then you'll move on, and no crying until then."

 

"Can I work?"

 

Mark nodded.

 

"Then, okay. A year…," he swallowed hard. "A year from now, I'll donate the money and I'll move on."

 

Today marked a year from that day. He never cried again. He held onto the small memories of his time with Jaebum and the kids. Thinking about the good times and burning the bad ones until slowly they began to get fuzzy around the edges, like a fading picture, but the burning desire in his heart never faded.

 

"Are you okay?" Mark asked, taking his hands in his.

 

He nodded, attempting a small smile.

 

The elder smiled at him sadly. "I have ice cream, wine and sad movies waiting for us when we get back."

 

He scowled, rolling his eyes. "I'll take the wine. I'll pass on the ice cream and sad movies."

 

"As long as we can drink it in bed."

 

"Deal," he smiled.

 

They arrived at the Plaza and when he stepped out of the car, cameras began to flash. He glanced around at the crowd as he straightened his jacket. Among the throng of flashing lights, he noticed two men whispering to each other before they pushed their way to the front.

 

"Sir, what's your relationship with Im Jaebum?" one of the asked, shoving a tape recorder in his face. 

 

Shocked, he stumbled backwards into Mark, who had just stepped out of the car.

 

"I'm sorry. What?"

 

"I noticed the last time you were here, you met with Mr. Im and left with him. Can you tell me what your relationship is with him?"

 

He turned to Mark, who quickly wrapped an arm around his shoulders with a smile. He felt like he had been punched in the chest.

 

"I'm sorry. My fiancé has no relationship with Mr. Im beyond business," Mark said smoothly. 

 

He wanted to protest, but his breaths were coming in short. 

 

"Fiancé?" the man asked.

 

"Yes. Now, if you may please step aside, I don't want to be late."

 

The man opened his mouth to say something, but was cut off by someone walking up beside them. "Jinyoung, Tuan. It's good to see you."

 

He stiffened as a chill ran up his spine, making him shiver. He didn't need to turn to know who the voice belonged to. He closed his eyes and tried to focus on his breathing, fighting back tears.

 

I won't cry. Not here. Not now.

 

"Wang," Mark bit out in greeting.

 

He opened his eyes and bowed his head at the man. "Jackson."

 

"How are you, Jinyoung?" the blonde asked. 

 

If the man wasn't glowering, he would've been less surprised at the seemingly genuine care for his well-being. "Wonderful," he replied, forcing a small smile.

 

"Apparently," Jackson replied almost inaudibly, staring at his hands on Mark's jacket. "I hear congratulations are in order."

 

He bit the inside of his cheeks. Luckily, Mark chose that time escape. "Thank you. We'll see you inside, Wang."

 

As soon as they began to walk inside, the whispering began, but it was nothing compared to when they walked into the reception hall. Outside, they were able to literally put it behind them. Inside, everyone looked up at him and Mark as they came in. He began to feel out of place again as they looked at him. 

 

"Don't mind them, Jinyoung. Tonight, you belong among them. Tomorrow, you can put all this behind you," Mark whispered in his ear.

 

He looked up at his best friend and smiled. "Thank you, Hyung."

 

Mark grinned, his sharp teeth flashing. "For what?"

 

"For being here. For being my friend. For… everything."

 

"Then dance with me."

Chapter Text

Jinyoung narrowed his eyes at his friend with all the growing suspicion in his heart. "Mark Tuan, what are you hiding?"

 

As much as the elder tried to pull an innocent expression, the mischievous stars in his eyes were dancing. "Nothing."

 

"I don't believe you," he said, turning away with a shake of his head. 

 

"Come on, Jinyoungie," Mark said, blocking his way. "One dance."

 

He studied his friend. It was obvious the elder was hiding something, but he couldn't quite pinpoint what it was. 

 

Then, it hit him.

 

"He's here, isn't he?" he asked Mark quietly.

 

Mark frowned before nodding his head.

 

He began to shake uncontrollably. I need to get out of here, he thought frantically. I can't breathe. I can't…

 

He turned back to the arch leading back to the lobby. 

 

This was a mistake.

 

He didn't want to draw attention to himself by running, but he couldn't get to the arch fast enough.

 

"Hyung," a small voice called out and he came to a skidding stop, tears already welling in his eyes. 

 

Youngjae? He couldn't be too sure. 

 

He hurriedly looked around the room for the owner, panic rising. 

 

"Hyung," the voice called again before a pair of gangly arms wrapped around him from behind. He looked down at the hands clasped just slightly below the single button of his suit jacket. As much as he wanted to believe it wasn't real, the warmth wrapping around him felt real. Too real. 

 

He tilted his head back and closed his eyes. The tears he had held back for a year slid down his face, hot and fat. A hand cupped his neck, forcing him to go back to its original position. 

 

"Open your eyes, Jinyoung."

 

"No," he choked, squeezing them shut tighter. "I'm too scared."

 

"Of what?"

 

"That if I open them, it wouldn't be real. If I don't open them, I won't have to watch you fade away. I won't have to watch you leave."

 

"Open your eyes. I'm real. I'm here, and I'm not leaving you ever again."

 

"No. Please, don't make me."

 

"Please."

 

It was one word, but the amount of emotion in it, tore at him and slowly he opened them. Softened black eyes stared back at him and he broke. Great sobs ripped him apart as he stared at the man. 

 

For months, he had wondered how he would feel if Jaebum appeared in front of him again. He wondered how Jaebum would be for forgiveness. He wondered how he would react. 

 

Nothing prepared him for the anger that surged through him as he stared at the man in front of him. He shook his head. "I'm sorry. I-I can't do this." He spun on his heels and walked away. 

 

"Jinyoung! Wait! Please, let me explain."

 

No! I can't… I can't do this here. I can't… can't do this again. I can't open my heart to him again - just to get hurt, his mind screamed, racing almost as fast his heart and feet. 

 

New York's frosty late winter wind hit him with a force as he stepped out to the curb, and he nearly choked on the rush of air that filled his lungs. He swayed on his feet before a hand grabbed his jacket to steady him.

 

"Jinyoung, please," Jaebum begged, pulling him close even as he fought to get away.

 

"Let me go!" he snarled at the man.

 

"No. I'm sorry, Jinyoung. I'll kneel, crawl, grovel if I have to, but I can't let you go. I tried and…," the man shook his head. "Letting you go was the hardest thing I ever had to do."

 

"Hardest? You wanna know what the hardest thing I ever had to do is?" he hissed as he looked Jaebun square in the eyes. "Trust you enough to shoot someone. For fuck' s sake, I killed someone. For you. And not just someone, but your own sister in law."

 

Jaebum flinched as if he had been smacked across the face. His eyes welled up with tears. "I'm sorry. I'm so... sorry."

 

"Sorry? I trusted you. An apology can't fix what you broke, Jaebum," he said softly even as his heart yearned to hold the man. 

 

Jaebum bowed his head and a single tear fell on his forearm. 

 

He  shrugged the man's hold on him off and wiped at the wet spot roughly. "When I needed you most, you weren't there. When I needed you to hold me and tell me everything would be okay, you weren't there. You threw me aside like some used up whore." He shook his head. "I loved you."

 

Jaebum lifted his face and tears slid down the span of his cheeks to pool at his chin. "Please, Jinyoung. Don't do this."

 

He clenched his jaw tightly and hissed the last thing he thought he would ever utter to the man. "And now, I hate you."

 

Jaebum fell on his knees on the sidewalk and he walked away. 

 

He walked and walked, adrenaline rushing through his veins until it wore off and only then he hailed a cab and went home. Exhausted, he peeled his jacket off at the door as he kicked off his shoes. 

 

He was pulling off his belt when Mark emerged from his room, studying him carefully. "Jinyoung, I…"

 

He closed his eyes and held up a hand, cutting his friend off. "Not right now, Mark. I'm exhausted and angry, and frankly, I can't stand the fact that you lied to me."

 

Mark sighed, but thankfully, he did press. Instead, he bowed his head and went back into his room.

 

He dragged himself to his room where he took off his clothes and threw himself on his bed. He stared blankly at the ceiling. He felt drained and emotionally exhausted, but his mind was alive, replaying the night's event. It didn't take long before that too fade away and he drifted off.

 

He woke up a few hours later, sobbing. 

 

The memories of their afternoon in Napa had invade his sleep. Only as they sat on the blanket under the sun laughing, he had looked at Jaebum and his white shirt began to stain an alarming shade of red. When he looked up at the man' face, blood was pouring from his lips and his breathing was erratic. He had crawled across the blanket and clawed at Jaebum's shirt only to find a gaping hole in his chest. 

 

His door swung open and Mark came rushing in, gathering him in his arms. "It's okay, Jinyoungie. It's okay. You had a nightmare. Whatever it is, isn't real."

 

"Hyung," he sobbed, falling into his arms.

 

After his sobbing subsided, Mark pushed him away gently. There was a tenderness in his eyes as they looked stared at him. "Jinyoungie," he began, "I… Shit! I can't let you go on like this. You have to go to him. You have to let him explain."

 

He shook his head. "I can't."

 

"Why not?"

 

"It hurts… so much."

 

Mark sighed. "Look, baby, I've watched you mope around for the last year and that hurt to watch. I never should’ve made you make that promise because instead of dealing with it, you bottled it up - practically stifling yourself.” The elder sighed much more heavily this time, looking down at his hands. “Jinyoung, love comes once - real love, and what you have for that man, is just that - real love. If you can’t go back to him, then at least talk it out. You need that closure.” 

 

He looked down at his own hands, unsure of what to do with what Markjust told him. “I’ll think about it.”

 

Mark stood, pulling out a piece of paper from his back pocket. “He really is sorry - if that counts for anything. He’ll be at this address for as long as you’re in the state,” he said, placing the paper in his open palms. “Go to him, Jinyoung. Don’t let this opportunity slip between your finger just to haunt you in the future.”

 

He waited until Mark exited before he placed the paper on his bedside table and threw himself back to stare at the ceiling. He tossed and turned for a couple of minutes, unable to keep the hurt in Jaebum’s eyes out of his mind. 

 

The sunrise’s orange hues came streaking in through the tiny cracks between the curtains before he finally sat up again. 

 

He looked at the paper. 

 

Mark is right. If I don’t go, I’ll regret it til the day I die. 

Chapter Text

He glanced at his wristwatch then at the revolving doors briefly before he did a rear march and began to walk back down the street for what seemed like the thousandth time. 

 

I don’t have to do this today, he argued with himself.

 

Yes, you do, his mind replied, slightly irritated. 

 

He stopped in his tracks about to turn back again before he shook his head and walked further away.

 

If you don’t, you’ll only regret it.

 

He stopped again with a groan. He did another rear March, clenching his jaw. He got to the revolving door and stared at the glass. His hair was a messy tousle from running his hands through the tresses. He drew in a breath and held it.

 

One.

 

Two.

 

Three.

 

He stepped into the revolving door, following it as it spun. He was about to step out, but as he was about to do so, he looked up. Standing in the lobby in a leather jacket and tight, black distressed jeans was Jaebum looking as beautiful and mesmerizing as he remembered. 

 

Instead of stepping out, he continued to follow the revolution of the door until it came back to where he entered it. He stepped back out into the frost. 

 

Why did you run? his mind tainted.

 

“Shut up,” he told himself, voice coming out raspy.

 

The hotel valets that stood to the side glanced back at him with pity in their eyes.

 

He mumbled an apology, bowing his head before he walked away.

 

He needed to get out of there - run away as fast as he can.

 

He began to walk down the street again.

 

Tomorrow, he decided.

 

He walked back home.

 

*****

 

For a week, he repeated it again and again, and everyday, Jaebum stood in the lobby just watching him.

 

Everyday, the pain and yearning in Jaebum’s eyes grew.

 

Until one day, as he was marching up to the revolving doors to enter it, he nearly collided with Jackson.

 

The man looked at him with the same unreadable expression on his face.

 

His heart began to beat again his rib cage like war drums. 

 

“Good afternoon,” he mumbled, bowing his head to avoid the elder’s eyes.

 

With a sigh, Jackson patted him on the shoulder, catching him by surprise twice in one day. “You’re both hurting. Don’t you think you should end it?” he asked thoughtfully.

 

A slicing pain ripped through him as he looked at Jaebum’s best friend walk away.

 

End it? The pain or the relationship altogether? Can I let him go?

 

He peered through the glass and the silhouette of Jaebum’s figure loomed from behind it, surprising him. He clutched at his chest as he looked at Jaebum’s face, a palm resting on the glass as if reaching out to him.

 

So close.

 

And yet, so far.

 

He realized then that at every turn, Jaebum had always been there, pushing him towards things he wanted, but never had the balls to reach out for. It was Jaebum that was always there, running after him even when he wanted to run away. 

 

He didn’t notice it before, but there was a slouch to Jaebum’s shoulders, as if he had the weight of the world lifted from his shoulders. His eyes - although barely visible - it didn’t cover the pain and longing in them. He had a scraggly goatee growing as if he’d neglected himself for a while.

 

His heart ached in his chest. Like before, he wanted to reach out and touch him, relieve the stress of whatever problems the man was facing, even if it was just for a moment. 

 

Tears welled in his eyes, blinding his vision and he turned away, blinking rapidly.

 

Memories washed over him as he made his decision.

 

No more running. If you’re gonna run, it’s going to be towards Jaebum.

 

He walked to the revolving door, crashing into it as he pushed to hurry it along its axis.

 

When he freed himself from the contraption, he ran towards the man, flinging himself in his arms. A soft sob escaped him as Jaebum buried his face in his neck, holding him close - holding him tightly.

 

“Jinyoung,” the man sighed contentedly.

 

“I’m so sorry.”

 

Jaebum shook his head, gripping him tighter. “You don’t have to apologize. I should be the one apologizing. I’m so sorry, Jinyoung. I didn’t want to leave you, but I had to ,” Jaebum growler fiercely, pulling away to hold his face in the palm of his hands. “I made a promise that you would never have to use a gun. I made a promise to protect you and I-I… I couldn’t. In that moment, I couldn’t and it ate me alive. I don’t ever want to put you in that position again.”

 

There was a tightness to the man’s voice that broke something in him.

 

He shook his head, pulling away to grip at Jaebum’s face. “I picked up that gun. I made the choice to use it.”

 

Jaebum looked at him with awe - a deep admiration lit with a hint of sadness in his softened brown eyes. The man reached up and brushed a thumb against his cheek, making him sigh and lean in to the palm of his hand.

 

“My brave wildcat,” the man said as he gathered him in his arms and his heart lightened even further.

 

Here.

 

Here, he felt like he’d finally come home as he breathed in Jaebum’s scent. “Only yours.”

Chapter Text

“Do you think they’ll last?” he asked the younger man.

 

The blonde looked at him with the same unreadable expression that both frustrated and piqued his interest. “Only the future knows where they’ll end up,” he replied vaguely.

 

“I hate talking to you sometimes,” he said as deadpanned as he could muster to cover the frustration.

 

“Will you stay on?” Jackson said stepping in front of him to block his view of Jinyoung and Jaebum.

 

He gave the man his undivided attention as he shrugged, pushing off the car. “It all depends on Jinyoung really. He doesn’t need help watching over Youngjae and Yugyeom, now that Youngjae can speak freely and be a child. Yugyeom missed him so he’ll be glued to Jinyoung’s side for a while.”

 

“Jaebum still has some business overseas and I have no doubt he’ll want Jinyoung by his side. The children need to stay here and go to school. They’ll need a guardian.”

 

“I’ll stay, if Jaebum needs me to.”

 

“I look forward to working with you, Mark Tuan,” Jackson said as he walked around the hood of the car.

 

He sucked in a breath. “Working with me?”

 

“You are their manny and I’m the boss’s right hand man. Jaebum will never leave his children to just anyone without someone he trusts there to ensure their safety.”

 

“I’ll have you know, Wang that I am an excellent manny.”

 

“So you say,” the man said with a smirk.

 

He sputtered. “I’ll die first before I work for you.”

 

Jackson came back faster than he left. Before he knew it, he was being pulled forward and crashing into the man’s hard chest. 

 

“You won’t be dying anytime soon. Not unless it’s to be right here - in my arms.”

 

His mind blanked, heat rushing up his spine. His heart began to flutter dangerously and he pushed the man away. “Eat me,” he snarled.

 

“Gladly. Just give me a time and place.”

 

He gasped in horror before clenching his jaws in anger. “When I’m a hundred and you’re the last toad on this planet.”

 

Jackson chuckled. “Stop fighting it, Spitfire. Like I said earlier, only the future knows where we’ll all end up. Soon, you’ll be kissing this toad and you’ll find yourself a king.”

 

He rolled his eyes as he shook his head and stumped away. “Over my dead body.”

 

He heard the laughter as if he was still standing beside the man. “I’ll see you bright and early, beautiful.”

 

“Go fuck yourself, Wang.”

 

“I’d rather fuck you,” Jackson said.

 

He growled low, baring his teeth as he ducked his head, trying to avoid the amused glances the valets were shooting him.

 

“Asshole! I fucking hate,” he grumbled as he brushed passed the valets. 

 

Everything about Jackson Wang was what he swore he would stay away from - rich, arrogant, and full of himself. From the moment he bombarded the man in the coffee shop across Jaebum’s office, he began to question his life. 

 

Mainly, the type of men he was drawn to, and his attraction to one rich, arrogant, know-it-all, conceited Jackson Wang.

 

“Fuck me!” he groaned as he remembered the man’s searing touch and passionate kisses. “I need to get laid.”