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Tamed

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Chapter 1: Fake Face

Chapter 2: Just a Job

Chapter 3: Contradictions

Chapter Text

The sun glistened through the dusty window, birds chattered outside, and the softness of it all was permeated by the screeching of a phone alarm. Immediately a hand darted out from under the blankets and smacked the phone to the floor, but that did nothing to cease the noise, and after a moment of groaning and curling into himself, the figure rose from the sheets and picked up the phone to properly silence it.

Hwang Hyunjin stumbled across the room, groggy and delirious, habitually making his way to the bathroom and glancing himself down in the mirror. His dark hair was a bird’s nest, and he hurried to comb it into decent placement over his forehead. There were dark circles under his eyes and his cheeks were a little pink. From an outside perspective he probably looked like death, but at least he had nowhere to be today.

Gathering himself enough to brush his teeth and head downstairs, he threw open a cabinet in the kitchen and grabbed a half-empty cereal box, pacing to the fridge next to get some milk. Woojin was supposed to be home by now, Hyunjin always set his alarm for his brother’s arrival, but it was pretty common for something at work to hold the other back. He’d wait up for him.

Pouring the fruity cereal into a bowl, chasing it with milk, Hyunjin stirred the mixture, watching the color from the flakes drift out into the liquid, turning the contents of the bowl into a strange, swirling mess of blues and reds. He brought his bowl to the table and sat, rested his head on his hand, sighing.

It was a Sunday morning, and Sunday mornings meant no school to wake up for, but here he was at seven oclock staring out the window that faced the driveway of the small house. It was a habit at this point to wake up no matter how exhausted he was, but it had been a long night of hovering over his computer and he was even more tired than usual. Maybe he’d take a nap later.

Downing his cereal in slow, intentional bites, he didn’t notice the car pull up to the driveway or his brother getting out of it, glancing up as the lock clicked on the front door and Woojin stepped in. The officer sighed as he immediately dropped his backpack on the floor of the entryway, running a hand through his dark hair. He smiled when he saw Hyunjin waiting for him.

“It’s early. I didn’t think you’d wake up on a Sunday,” Woojin grinned, but it seemed to have made his day, as it always did, to see that Hyunjin was awake. Woojin had mentioned once long before that it was a little lonely to only be awake while Hyunjin was asleep. After all, they were each other’s only family at the moment, at least for the next two years while their parents lived in America for work.

Hyunjin swallowed his mouthful and shrugged, going back to slowly stirring the remains of the cereal in the milk that was turning grey from all of the color. “I wanted to say hi to you before you went to bed. Anything happen at work today?”

Woojin’s smile slowly faded, and without even bothering to remove the gear on his belt, he paced across the small living room and into the open kitchen, dragging out the chair across from Hyunjin and lowering himself down into it, wincing a little at the motion. “It’s been a long day,” he sighed, leaning forward in his seat. “Our anonymous tipper threw us a hand today, which was helpful, but today was… well… We found a body today.”

Hyunjin’s eyes grew wide and slowly he let go of his spoon, blinking up at his brother’s tired eyes. He knew when Woojin wanted to be a police officer that it would be a stressful job, but now that he actually was one, Hyunjin was finding more and more reasons as to why it was overwhelming.

“An omega?” he asked softly. It was almost a fact that the body was an omega’s. After all, Woojin dealt almost specifically with omega affairs. It was something he was passionate about after what had happened with their mother when Hyunjin was just a child. Woojin nodded, biting his lip.

“He was young, probably around your age. They’re doing the autopsy now. No one’s reported him missing or anything.” He sighed. “It’s scary how often this is happening lately. It seems like in this city specifically, more omegas are being harassed and targeted than anywhere else. But maybe it just seems like that because I’m behind the scenes.” Woojin shook his head slowly. “Is it like this everywhere else too? It’s worse to consider, but it’s probably the right assumption. It’s not right that half of the population has to be afraid of the other half.”

Hyunjin only nodded. He was blessed to be an alpha, he was grateful for it and he was proud of it. The only time he was ever ‘harassed’ was being bullied for his face being on the prettier side. He didn’t have to deal with people touching him or catcalling him or far, far worse that omegas had to worry about.

“Do you think you guys can find out who killed him?” Hyunjin asked slowly, wondering if the question was too probing. If the answer was no, it would only depress Woojin further to say. But Woojin nodded carefully.

“I hope so. It seemed quick and messy, and there were cameras on a building near where his body was found. I’m sure with some digging we’ll find the guy fast, but it got too late so Chan sent me home before I could start the actual investigation.”

“Reasonable, you look exhausted,” Hyunjin stated with a frown. His cereal was all soggy and didn’t look appetizing at all anymore, so he stood up and dumped the rest down the sink, washing the bowl quickly. Woojin sighed, glancing to the portrait of their family hanging on the wall across from the table.

“We’re all lucky, huh? Our family of alphas Alphas have it good. I don’t think other alphas really realize that.”

Hyunjin nodded in agreement to Woojin’s statement, before softly replying, “Other alphas haven’t seen what we’ve seen. The grass is always greener on the other side, right?”

“I guess it would seem like that, yeah. But jeez,” Woojin groaned, rubbing his eyes. “Regardless, I need to head to sleep. You were gonna go hang out with Seungmin today right?”

Hyunjin shook his head. “Seungmin got grounded so I can’t. I’ll just chill, play some games, take a nap. Go to sleep, hyung.”

Woojin smiled, standing and making his way to his brother, reaching up to rustle his hair. “Have a good day okay? Don’t stay cooped up in your room all day, too.”

“I won’t,” Hyunjin promised. And with that, Woojin disappeared into his room.

Hyunjin turned off the water and placed his bowl on a towel by the sink to dry. He stared up at the portrait that Woojin had been looking at and sighed. He missed his parents. His mother had wanted to stay behind to take care of them, but his father insisted that he wasn’t alone in America so she followed him. It was a little lonely. He was lucky to have Woojin around, even just minimally.

He made his way up the stairs. The conversation they’d had in the kitchen had inspired him somewhat, as those sorts of conversations always did. Hyunjin turned the lock on his door quietly behind him so that it wouldn’t click too obviously, and then made his way to his computer desk. With a wave of the mouse, the right screen was already up.

It was a profile of a young girl named Mina, her smiling face the main picture in the top left corner. A short bio labelled her as an introvert, a shy person, an omega. Hyunjin clicked on ‘messages’ in the bottom corner of the screen, and over forty popped up. He groaned. It wasn’t necessarily surprising that he had so many, but it was always a little exhausting to reply to each one. Regardless, he had a job to do just like Woojin did, and remembering this, he pulled up each message one by one.

‘Hey cutie, I noticed your profile amongst the others. How does it feel being the most gorgeous girl in the world?’

‘I know right? Hey, let’s go on a date. We both live in the same city right? I’m sure you have some free time.’

Hyunjin responded to those two rather dully, a cutesy atmosphere to all of his messages, before clicking on the next and wincing as he read it.

‘You’re the tenth omega to turn me down on this fucking site. What is this, a joke? Am I ugly to you or something? You don’t have to look at my face when I’m breeding you, you dumb bitch.’

He glanced to the username before quickly jotting it down in the notepad by his keyboard. This would be one of his targets, if things got too much further out of hand. Once threats started being thrown, that was when he’d take action.

‘Please understand, I’m really just here to make friends,’ Hyunjin responded to the degrading message. ‘I didn’t mean to make you feel insulted. Don’t talk about breeding please, it makes me really uncomfortable...’

Immediately the sender was typing.

‘Well I’m insulted, so look what you did. And as for talking about breeding, isn’t that all you’re good for? Pretty face with nothing to you. There are only three high schools in the district that you said you live in. You’d better watch your mouth before I come find you and mess it up.”

Bingo. Just a few more chats with this guy and Hyunjin was almost certain he’d be someone that the police would take interest in. Just last week he’d managed to send two names to the station that Woojin worked at, the names of two alphas who had threatened to kill or assault the girl that Hyunjin was posing as. With screenshotted evidence and links to the accounts he was using for verification, with real names that he found using Woojin’s advanced search site (not to his brother’s knowledge, of course), he’d managed to get both of the alphas’ accounts banned and their names on a list of potential threats.

It was his favorite past time at this point. He had five fake accounts that he used to pose as five different omegas, where he’d just chat with people until they revealed their true colors. They almost always did too. He could tell a good person from a bad person within just a few messages, and weeded his way through the chats in this way until he finally worked the evil out of the people who seemed dangerous from the start. And then he reported them and felt the internal gratification when their accounts turned blank, the tiny message of ‘this user was deleted for harassment’ being so comforting to his hard word and ego.

His computer dinged with a new message, and Hyunjin only took interest because this one was from someone he’d never spoken to before. Before clicking on the message, he took himself to their profile. They seemed rather… basic. Member for over a year, only fifteen friends, and a very short bio. Their username was basic as well, ‘spearB’. Shrugging, he accepted the message.

‘Hey’ was all it said. So he replied back just as shortly.

‘Hi :)’

A few seconds, the notification showed that spearB was typing.

‘How are you?’ was all he had sent. Hyunjin sighed. This person seemed kind of boring, not the type that he’d normally keep talking to. He was only on this site to find potential threats after all, not really to chat with normal people.

‘I’m okay haha,’ he typed back. ‘A little sleepy >< I woke up so early….’

The person responded before he could close the chat.

‘That’s cute lol. Go back to sleep?’

‘Noooo,’ Hyunjin replied with a blank face, the cutesy atmosphere entirely online. ‘Then I’ll be too awake tonight!!’

After sending this, he quickly closed out the website so that it wouldn’t show him online anymore. He could keep replying through his phone if he wanted to, but he really didn’t. Instead he did just what he told spearB he wouldn’t, walked to his bed and fell into it face first. Sighing into his pillow, he rolled over to stare at the ceiling, closing his eyes and reminiscing.

His mother’s cry, she was sobbing, Woojin was running and told him to stay behind but he was running too, because why was mommy crying? And then he saw why. And then he understood. At five years old he quickly understood how power was distributed into this unfair world. That those with physical strength always came out on top, and that those who were born to submit, in the end, ultimately would have to. Their dad the next day had explained in the hospital waiting room that because Hyunjin and Woojin were alphas, they had to do their part in protecting the omegas around them. They had to use their strength for good. Woojin was determined to become a police officer, to become a protector of the people. And Hyunjin… Hyunjin at eighteen years old was now doing this, sending names to Woojin via an anonymous email link, getting alphas that would never know his true face into trouble with the law. It was invigorating enough, and safe enough, that he didn’t even have to leave his computer. It was easy, no cost and all benefit.

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“This one’s cute.” The voice from behind him spoke, and the man at the computer turned to the alpha behind him. “Is this the one everyone’s coming to you about?”

“Yeah,” Changbin replied, turning back to his laptop with narrowed eyes. “Looks like this is one of the accounts they said was involved. There’s at least three more that the same person seems to be using.”

Jisung pulled up a chair, falling into it and sighing as he relaxed. “What are you going to do when you find out who’s behind these faces?” he asked curiously, excitement bright in his eyes. Jisung always liked the fight.

“I’m not sure yet. Depends on who it is, and why they’re doing it,” Changbin responded dully, and Jisung frowned. But Changbin continued, “But I’ll let you know before I do anything. Ultimately I don’t really care. I’m just being paid to put a stop to this mess.”

Jisung’s frown sprouted back into a grin. “Let me know if I need to get messy. I enjoy it more than you do, after all.”

Changbin chuckled. “I’ll let you know.”

Chapter Text

The station was five miles from the house, far enough to take a car but close enough that traffic was rarely an issue. Woojin found blessing in that at least as he made his daily commute. Two and a half songs was all it took to be easing into park in front of the rather bland building. With his belt already hooked with his basic supplies, flashlight, mace, handcuffs, and such other possible necessities, he locked his car and pocketed the key, making his way inside.

He was entirely unsurprised to see that, despite arriving fifteen minutes early, someone was already inside. He could hear the clicking of keys being furiously pressed, and he didn’t have to guess to know who was around the corner when he turned it. His blonde coworker was always the first to show up and the last to leave; There was a running joke that Chan was an immortal of some kind to be functioning on so little free time and sleep, but Chan always argued that he was just too passionate about his job to find interest in doing anything else. Woojin was similar; If it wasn’t for Hyunjin, he didn’t think he’d have much reason to go home himself.

“Woojin? That’s you right?”

“Who else in their right mind would be here at five am?” Woojin sighed, and Chan hummed in acceptance to that answer, spinning around in his swivel chair with a halfhearted smile. “Good news, our anonymous friend sent us two new names just last night.” Woojin blinked, quickly grabbing his own chair from his desk and dragging it to Chan’s so that he could fall back into it and lean to see Chan’s desktop screen. Chan spun back around and double clicked a folder in the top corner of his screen, one that blended in with countless others, only differentiated by the tiny names under them. This one said “anon evidence,” and Woojin noted that there were now thirty submissions rather than twenty-eight like there had been yesterday when one had come in. This person was on a roll, and Woojin wondered how someone had so much free time or so little luck that they could bump into this many creeps back to back.

“Did he submit something useful this time, or just warnings?” Woojin asked, squinting to read clearly as Chan clicked on one of the many submissions.

“Warnings, but they’re decent ones,” Chan replied, scanning the report as he spoke. “One of these creeps threatened to kill the omega that our anon supposedly is, the other threatened to rape him. I already took steps in working with the website to get those people’s IP addresses blocked, hopefully they’ll realize that someone is watching and stop being so…”

“Fucking creepy,” Woojin finished with a sigh. “Were both of these accounts that got reported from the area, or out of town?”

Chan frowned. “Local. All of them have been so far, and it’s likely that our anonymous friend is from the area too if he’s focusing on that.” He then paused, staring down in thought before his dark eyes flicked up to meet Woojin’s. “I think we’d gather a lot more information if we found the guy sending in all of these tips. He obviously knows more than we do to be able to get all of this info, it wouldn’t be hard to find him and have a talk.”

“No,” Woojin sighed. This wasn’t the first time Chan asked this, nor would it likely be the last. Chan was the investigative type, the type of person who had to know everything about everything if it would benefit a case at all. But Woojin found himself in the right to be against it in this situation. “If he’s anonymous even after we requested to meet with him last month, obviously he’s keeping his identity secret for a reason. Given how much he’s helped us, we should respect his privacy. Don’t bite the hand that feeds you, you know?”

Chan nodded slowly, disappointment evident on his face. “I understand, I just… ugh. I really want to know what this person’s like, why they’re doing this for us. This is the only fun part of this job lately with all of the chaos going on in this city lately. Catching small time baddies just like we used to, it feels so carefree.”

Woojin agreed, but he wouldn’t say it. Chan was right, things in the city had grown more chaotic and their job had become much less satisfying. Solving a case in the old days meant that they would receive thanks, that they were saving someone or helping someone. Solving a case now meant stress, pressure, and a chance that their victim could turn out like the young omega boy from yesterday who was found dead on the lakeside. This anonymous guy gave Woojin something good to tell Hyunjin when the younger asked him what was happening around the city. When so much bad was taking place everywhere else, Woojin could still say ‘but we caught this person harassing omegas’ or ‘we stopped a worse crime from coming to play’ like he did.

But Chan was wrong in thinking that they should exploit the warm feeling of success they gained from this sort of case. Life wasn’t fun and games, and being an officer wasn’t something you did to feel happy and satisfied with yourself. If the anonymous tipper wanted to remain anonymous, that was something they had to respect if they wanted tips to keep coming at all. And despite how good it felt to catch someone, to help someone, it was more necessary for them to focus their efforts on the murder from yesterday, the bigger issues floating around the once peaceful city.

“How’s Hyunjin?” Chan asked, seeming to realize that Woojin’s silence was a request for the subject to change, and Woojin sucked in a breath, glancing out the window.

“He seems okay, but I didn’t get to see him much before I had to sleep for this shift. I wish I could just watch tv or something with him like we used to, but bills come first.”

Chan nodded understandingly. “That’s how it goes, but I’ve talked to him enough to know that he really appreciates you, Woojin. He looks up to you like a hero, he has since he was shorter than my shoulders.”

Woojin smiled. It warmed his heart to know that he was at least a good influence on somebody. Hyunjin whose parents had to leave for work when he was rather young deserved to have somebody to look up to, and if Woojin could be that figure, it was what would make him happiest. “I’m relieved,” Woojin admitted. “I always worry I’m not there for him enough.”

“You know he’s always allowed to come up to the station, right? I know it was something he did more as a kid, but you can always bring him if he’s not busy with school and he’s bored or something. I know how interested he is in police work,” Chan offered.

Woojin nodded, finally pushing from Chan’s desk to roll back to his own, pulling up his files to begin the paperwork that took up a good portion of his opening shift. “I’ll ask him if he’d like to.”

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“Dude, you’re going to get into so much trouble.”

“You think I care?”

Hyunjin grinned at his best friend’s response and stepped aside so that Seungmin could stroll through the front door, the taller taking a paranoid peek outside to make complete sure that Seungmin’s mom wasn’t sitting in the driveway or something before closing the door and turning around.

“How did you get out of your house?” Hyunjin asked excitedly. He loved hearing Seungmin’s dramatic tales. The escape from his strict parents’ house was one part of a long, ongoing story that he enthusiastically listened to since they were both pretty young. He’d played a part in the story a few times, bringing a ladder so his friend could climb down from the second story window, faking sick so that Seungmin would have to ‘bring him medicine’ when Woojin was working.

“This time was easier than others, perhaps,” Seungmin began, making his way to the couch and falling back into it, Hyunjin laying back on the floor and stretching his arms above his head as he listened. “So it’s not as thrilling as most of my stories, but hear me out. So, my mom is home right now, right? I told her that I picked up a college class.”

Hyunjin’s jaw dropped. “You didn’t.”

Seungmin grinned. “I did tell her that, and I didn’t pick up a college class, so you’re half right. Either way, I told her that I picked up an extra course alongside my other homework and that I’m just oh so behind on work. So I locked myself away in my room, told her I’d study till I passed out and head to school early to get everything turned in. I snuck out through the window almost immediately after she began cooking dinner. Which means that I’m completely free until after school tomorrow when I have to return and tell her all about how I’m going to drop the class pretty soon because the workload is too hard.”

Hyunjin cackled. “She’s gonna know, dude. This is the most bizarre story, you have to at least play on it for a month or she’ll know it’s all a lie.”

Seungmin chuckled at Hyunjin’s excitement, shrugging his shoulders and leaning back into the sofa. “Who cares? I’m already grounded, what’s she gonna do? If she says I can’t come over anymore all you have to do is pull your ‘I have no parents I’m lonely’ story and she’ll feel too guilty to keep me home.

“Hey, it’s not a story,” Hyunjin pounted. “It actually sucks when you’re grounded cause Woojin doesn’t come home till hell at night and I’m just sitting alone at home all day.”

Seungmin snorted. “You have your online ‘friends’ don’t you? Unless Woojin already found out about your accounts and sent your soul to heaven.”

Hyunjin made a disgusted face. “Woojin will never catch me at this rate. Also, you think I enjoy those freaks’ presence? Seungmin, what you have to realize is that what I do online is entirely a job.”

“Do you get paid?”

Hyunjin’s eyes narrowed. “Volunteering.”

“Good enough,” Seungmin grinned. “How many creeps did you catch this week? You haven’t kept me updated, I was worried you might’ve quit your little game. I like hearing all of the creepy stories, you know, so you have to keep telling me even when I quit asking about it.”

Hyunjin smiled, whipping out his phone. “For sure. So as of today, there have been three people this week who have done something bad enough that they deserved a police tip. I’ll show you all the messages if you want. I’m also talking to someone new, but this guy seems kinda boring. Just ‘hi how are you’ level stuff.”

“Maybe you’ve weeded out so many creeps that all you’re bumping into is normal people. You did it, Jinnie!” Seungmin sarcastically cheered, but Hyunjin was too focused on pulling up his messages on the website to play along.

“So here’s the one I turned in recently. He said he was going to find me, which was a little creepy, but honestly I don’t think it’s a problem when the girl he thinks I am literally lives in Japan. Like, good luck hunting for someone you don’t know anything about. These guys are idiots, seriously. It’s so easy to lock them into saying shit that gets their accounts banned and their names on search lists.”

Seungmin’s eyes swiped back and forth repeatedly as he scrolled through the messages, his nose crinkling in distaste more and more the further he read down. “Gross. I don’t know why I’m still surprised by people saying nasty shit like this to you, but here I am, still grossed out. I’m so fucking glad that I’m not an omega that has to deal with this, dude.”

“Same,” Hyunjin sighed. “I don’t know why omegas don’t just report things like this to the police like I am though. I guess they’re too passive for it.”

“Guess so,” Seungmin shrugged. “Well… I don’t know about passive. Jeongin asked you out last week, right? That took some balls.”

Hyunjin frowned, taking his phone back and pocketing it. “I’m just not really down to date right now. Jeongin’s cute and all but he’s too cutesy. I get the appeal but he could find an alpha that would like that more than I do.”

Seungmin slipped off the couch to sit on the floor with Hyunjin, laying back so that they were both watching the ceiling fan make small rings around its axis. “He was so upset though. He’s smitten for you, Jinnie. Poor baby. He was telling his friends that he would die for you to just hold his hand, the least you could’ve done is gave him a kiss before breaking his heart,” Seungmin pouted, a little mockingly before sighing. “Yeah, I feel bad for omegas man, but not bad enough to pity date one. I get where you’re coming from.”

Suddenly there was a banging on the front door and both of the boys shot up, eyes wide as Seungmin’s mom’s voice pierced through the walls.

“KIM SEUNGMIN I KNOW THAT YOU’RE IN THERE. DON’T MAKE ME CALL WOOJIN TO KICK YOU OUT!”

“Quick, hide in the closet,” Hyunjin hissed under his breath, and Seungmin didn’t wait to rush down the hall. Hyunjin jumped to his feet, rustling his hair, rubbing his eyes harshly, anything he could do to make it look like he’d been taking a nap, his regular excuse. Throwing open the door to the angry woman, he asked in a tired voice, “Mrs. Kim…?”

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spearB: ‘Hey, you awake?’

Penguin_baby: ‘yep! How are you? :)’

spearB: ‘I’m fine. You were offline most of the day, do you go to school?’

Penguin_baby: ‘unfortunately :( my friends always want to hang out after school too so I was offline. Did you miss me?’

spearB: ‘I was offline most of the day too lol, working and such. I just got home from work a bit ago.’

Penguin_baby: ‘Must be a ton of traffic, either that or you get off work really late!’

spearB: ‘Lots of traffic. I live downtown in Seoul. I assume you live in Seoul too, given your location check in last week?’

Penguin_baby: ‘yeah, I was at the mall with my friends haha’

spearB: ‘Shopping sounds fun. Maybe we can go shopping someday? When I get to know you better at least. I don’t want to seem creepy.

Penguin_baby: ‘It’d be fun! Maybe someday we can, but let’s get to know each other better first :) You’re not creepy, don’t worry’

spearB: ‘I’m glad then. Hey, I really like talking to you by the way. I know we just met and all, but you seem to be pretty down to earth and I like that. Let’s keep talking more, yeah?’

Penguin_baby: ‘for sure! I’d like that too :D’

Chapter Text

spearB: ‘Can you send me a photo? Like one you’ve just taken?’

 

Hyunjin blinked at the message on his screen. It had been two days since spearB had sent him anything, and he’d almost concluded that the guy had grown uninterested and left. But here he was, and with a message like this. He quickly whipped up the obscure site that he found Mina’s image on, scrolling through her profile and picking out a picture of her after a gym workout that looked somewhat impulsively taken. Within two minutes he was sending spearB a picture of ‘himself’.

 

Penguin_baby: ‘is this alright?’

 

It took a second, but spearB was typing. Hyunjin slackened in his chair, straightening up only when his teacher walked in. It was the last month of school, and everyone was ready for it to be over, Hyunjin especially. He could finally get on with his goals and dreams once he graduated, could finally follow in Woojin’s footsteps and become a police officer. Seungmin to his left was doodling on the borders of his homework, shooting Hyunjin a sly grin when they met eyes.

The teacher announced that they’d just be working on group work today, and the second she let them free, Seungmin slid his desk over to combine it with Hyunjin’s. “Hey, don’t look but Jeongin is staring into the back of your skull right now.”

Resisting the urge to turn and look anyway, Hyunjin glanced down and muttered, “I’m not really surprised but okay. Does he still seem upset? I’ve been trying to avoid him just in case.”

Seungmin hummed, scribbling out a halfhearted doodle of a naked girl, making quick spiralling marks with the pen so that the teacher wouldn’t be able to make out what was underneath. “Yeah, if you want me to be honest. I mean, he’s still got the hugest crush on you. Even you rejecting him won’t change that.”

“Guess he’s gonna be disappointed then,” Hyunjin shrugged. He knew it sounded cold, but he couldn’t bring himself to care. He wasn’t interested in Jeongin, an omega that he barely knew, one that knew more about him that he ever told him. The younger had confessed to him last week, but he turned him down. He wasn’t interested in dating, especially not with someone that he didn’t know well.

Suddenly Seungmin sat up a little straighter, looking around the room. “Hey, where’s Lia? Wasn’t she supposed to be part of our group? Her name’s on our paper.”

Hyunjin sighed heftily, shaking his head. “If you didn’t skip the first day of school, you would’ve remembered them telling us. They send omegas home when they start their first heats. That’s probably where she’s at.”

“Gross,” Seungmin winced. “Didn’t need to know that much about her.”

Hyunjin shrugged. “It’s just basic bodily functions. It’s not like omegas can help whether they go into heat or not, you know. Just be glad you’ll never have to deal with it.”

“I’m glad as hell,” Seungmin snorted. “It sounds nasty.”

Suddenly Hyunjin’s phone buzzed, and he whipped it out. This teacher rarely cared whether they had their phones out as long as the work got done, and they could slack off a bit when their excuse for being behind could be that their groupmate wasn’t in class today. SpearB had responded, and Hyunjin opened the message, swallowing tightly as he read what it said.

 

spearB: ‘Aren’t you in school? Why aren’t you in class?’

 

Shit. He hadn’t thought, and now there was suspicion. Immediately he began to type back.

 

Penguin_baby: ‘I’m skipping today. Graduation is coming up soon, you know? Nothing in school matters right now, so I didn’t feel like going~’

 

He figured it was an okay excuse, waiting impatiently for the other to respond just in case he’d be called out on his bluff. Seungmin glanced over at Hyunjin’s screen, whistling lowly. “You almost messed up big just now.”

Hyunjin shook his head, but there was discomfort swirling in his stomach. “I didn’t almost mess up. He’s gonna believe this because I haven’t made myself out to be some good student or anything. Catfishing is easy, you just have to watch to make sure you’re not contradicting yourself.”

“Whatever you say,” Seungmin mumbled. Both of them took something like this seriously. It wasn’t necessarily safe, what Hyunjin was doing. If one person caught him, they could expose him to everyone else on the site, who would then be very unhappy with the fact that he was leading them on. He’d sent in thirty names now, seven of those thirty were arrested afterwards when his lead had the station finding evidence of crimes the men or women had committed. He was pissing off a lot of people, and if they found out who he was, he would be in at least some amount of danger. He was less scared of that than he was scared of what Woojin would do if he found out that Hyunjin was putting himself at such great of a risk. Seeing disappointment on Woojin’s face for the first time wasn’t what Hyunjin ever wanted to experience, and he’d probably tell their parents too. It wouldn’t be good.

His phone dinged, and he breathed as he read the message.

 

spearB: ‘I didn’t expect you to be a skipper, but okay lol. I used to skip a lot of school as well, I get it.’

 

“See? He believed it,” Hyunjin told Seungmin, as if he expected it, as if he hadn’t been nervous just seconds before. “These people, they’re following their desires and not their brains.” His phone then dinged again.

 

spearB: ‘Let’s skype sometime?’

 

Fuck. Well, it wouldn’t be that hard to tell the guy that he wasn’t comfortable with that. The problem with it is that it would be a little sketchy to not want to show himself live. But a little sketchy was okay, as long as spearB didn’t honestly, actually doubt him.

 

Penguin_baby: ‘I’m really sorry but I’m not too comfortable with that. My dad would kill me if he found out I was talking to strangers.’

 

The response was quick to come.

 

spearB: ‘I guess I get it. Are you in an arranged marriage or something? I don’t get why he would care otherwise.’

 

“Seungmin, am I in an arranged marriage?” Hyunjin whispered, Seungmin furrowing his brow before realizing what Hyunjin was still talking about. “Uh, sure. Tell him you’re gonna get married to me or something.’

And so he began typing back.

 

Penguin_baby: ‘Yeah :( I’m arranged to marry this ugly alpha I barely know….’

Hyunjin yelped as he was smacked hard on the shoulder, immediately breaking into laughter at Seungmin’s fury. “I am NOT ugly, Hwang! I have omegas crawling down the halls to get my number! I’ve had five girlfriends and two boyfriends in the past three years!”

“And where are those five girlfriends and two boyfriends now?” Hyunjin snorted, only to be smacked again even harder.

There was a smacking on a desk at the front of the room, and the two looked up to see the teacher’s sharp eyes focused right on them. “Hyunjin, Seungmin, get back to work,” she sternly ordered, and the two fell quiet, shoving at each other back and forth until the bell rang to leave.

Hours later, walking home from school, Hyunjin checked his phone and winced at the message he’d gotten while he wasn’t using it.

spearB: ‘I’m jealous. I kind of hoped you wouldn’t be promised to anyone, you’re cute as hell.’

Maybe this spearB was someone he could report one day after all. But the message was pretty tame, so he replied with a short, cutesy ‘thank you’ and continued on his way.

------------------------------------------------

J-one: ‘Hey cutie ;)’

This message came through to his Jihyo account, one that he rarely used. He didn’t think much of it until he realized that this person, J-one, was mutual friends with spearB on the website. Seungmin had simply said ‘freaks flock together,’ but it felt a little strange. Maybe it was a weird coincidence. Maybe Seungmin was entirely right. Regardless, he responded as normal. J-one was flirty and pushy, but didn’t say anything that would be worthwhile sending to the police. Hyunjin kept up his act and continued throughout his day without thinking anything of it.

------------------------------------------

A week later, there was a party hosted by an alpha named Hoseok, who’d practically begged Hyunjin and Seungmin to come.

“Dude, guys, you are both such good reputation. If you come to my party then other people will come to!”

Hyunjin winced, shaking his head. “Dude, you don’t get it, my big brother is a police officer. If he finds out I’ve been drinking at a party he’ll literally kill me, and before you say I don’t have to drink, I know that you’ll pressure me into it when I get there.”

Seungmin glanced to Hyunjin, then back to Hoseok, slowly replying, “I’ll go to your party. I’d use any excuse to get drunk again. Hyunjin, come on, you had fun last time we drank, didn’t you?”

Yeah, sure, it had been fun. But it was just him and Seungmin, not a party with a bunch of people. They were more likely to get caught this way. “I don’t know…”

Hoseok whimpered, “Pleeeease Hyunjin, you’re like the most attractive person in this school. Plus you’re good company, it would be cool just to hang out with you.”

He sighed. “Okay, I’ll go.” It wasn’t like Woojin would be home or awake to catch him leaving right? He could just say he was hanging out with Seungmin and Woojin wouldn’t question it in the slightest. The thought kind of saddened him. He could literally be gone for days and his workaholic brother wouldn’t think much of it. But he tried to push that aside. It wasn’t like Woojin didn’t care, he cared a ton, and that was relieving enough to consider.

Hoseok cheered. “Okay, it’s at nine pm this Friday night. I’ll text you my address and everything. Bring something to snack on!”

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Jisung was grinning widely, and Changbin was a little concerned until he saw what was on the screen. Five different pages pulled up, five different girls and boys, all omegas, all with the same location.

“I busted my ass to find it, but I think these are all the accounts the person’s using. All we have to do to find out is…”

Suddenly, every single one of the accounts showed ‘online’ at the same time, when they had previously been offline. And Changbin was grinning. This meant that they really were all the same person, because if one account was logged in, the others had to be by default if it was the same device. “You found him, Jisung,” he grinned.

“All we have to do is track down the address this person’s using. If they log into a public wifi of any sort, we’ll know exactly where he is. Through that, we’ll know who he is, and through that, we can snag him.”

“Good work,” Changbin smiled. Jisung beamed.

Maybe things would be easy. They could take this person, and… well, he still had to find out what to do with them. He sat down at his computer, pulling up the messages he’d previously been typing out to the alpha on the anonymous site.

“We’ve found your target, we’re close to catching him. Have you decided what you want us to do with him?”

The response was almost immediate.

“Lock him up somewhere. Tell me when you have him.”

Chapter Text

The bustle of employees from behind the counter was a familiar, comforting noise as Hyunjin and Seungmin sat at a table nearby. Hyunjin traced the red and white checkered print over the table as they waited for their food, Seungmin tapping away on his phone.

“I think Hoseok invited like fifty or more people. I overheard at least five talking in the halls about this party.” It made Hyunjin even more nervous to hear. Woojin would literally end him if he found out that Hyunjin was partying and drinking underaged. As if reading his mind, Seungmin patted his shoulder. “Hey, it’s not like you’re doing anything out of the ordinary. You’ve been hiding this catfishing thing for Woojin all this time and haven’t gotten caught. Do you really think just one party will get you in trouble?”

It was true, it wasn’t like this was his first time stepping out of bounds. The thought relaxed him just a little, and he sighed with relief as their food came to the table. Quickly grabbing a piece of chicken from his tray, he asked, “Have you been to one of Hoseok’s parties before?”

Seungmin grinned broadly. “Of course I have! It’s a shame that you haven’t, really, they’re lit as fuck.” Hyunjin frowned but went back to his food. He figured it would be worthwhile to experience something like that at least, if he was going to be an officer busting people for stuff like this someday. Plus, didn’t he deserve to live a little? He was about to graduate and go straight into college, he wouldn’t have time later.

“I guess it won’t be so bad,” he finally concluded, and Seungmin hummed through a mouthful of chicken. Hyunjin whipped out his phone and scrolled through his online site. No new messages from anyone, which was a little saddening given that his entire entertainment besides hanging with Seungmin was catching baddies on his accounts. Not even spearB, who used to message him regularly, had responded or even seen his last message. He figured it was fate telling him to put his phone up and live in the moment like he often forgot to do, so he slipped his phone back into his back pocket and took time enjoying the meal.

The party started at nine, and it was currently eight, so they had just a bit before they needed to arrive. Hoseok offered to give them a ride so that Seungmin wouldn’t have to ‘borrow’ his mom’s car, and that had sounded like a good enough idea, so they were waiting at this restaurant for him to arrive. Sure enough, his loud, rumbling engine shook from the parking lot at around eight-thirty, and the two got up to throw away their trash and leave. As they were walking out, Seungmin held the door open for the man behind them, and Hyunjin in the spare time made his way to Hoseok’s sports car.

“I can’t believe you drive something like this,” he said without even a greeting, and Hoseok grinned, rubbing the steering wheel of the car affectionately. “Yep! This is my baby right here. Come on, get in. I can’t be late to my own party, right?”

Hoseok was a fast driver, like fast enough that even Seungmin was clinging onto the handle above his seat, and they arrived to a large, two story house quicker than they likely should have.
“Welcome to my house!” Hoseok declared cheerfully. There were already three cars in the wide driveway and one parked on the street when he pulled in. Hyunjin jumped out of the car, grateful to be on solid land again after a drive like that, and they followed Hoseok to the front door. The second the door was pushed open, music and bass boomed through Hyunjin’s chest and ears simultaneously, and he felt his heart skip with something akin to excitement at the feeling. Maybe this wouldn’t be so bad after all..? They shuffled in and closed the door behind them, Seungmin gaping excitedly around the room. The living room was well decorated with nice, modern furniture, and blacklights shone in each corner of the room, another light spinning from the coffee table with changing colors. Already standing around, or in one case dancing, there were seven people hanging out. Hyunjin eyed the kitchen counter, where at least ten large bottles that looked alcoholic were sitting on full display.

“Do you like it?” Hoseok yelled over the booming music, and Hyunjin was speechless so Seungmin yelled back, “Duh! This is awesome!” and hurried to the counter. Hoseok laughed before turning to Hyunjin, motioning for him to follow to the counter as well. Hoseok and Seungmin were grabbing glasses, pouring a yellowish liquid into each of them. Hoseok poured a third one and passed it to Hyunjin, who eyed it cautiously.

“Come on, Jinnie, it won’t hurt you!” Seungmin called, and downed the drink in three big gulps. Hyunjin sighed, took a deep breath, and did the same. The warmth down his throat almost burned as the drink went down, and the taste hit him like a train afterwards, the alpha immediately gagging. Hoseok laughed at him and poured another, passing it to him. Hyunjin frowned. He really didn’t want to taste something that nasty again, but Hoseok called, “Don’t be a bitch, Jinnie, it’s the good stuff!”

And so he took and drank, and took and drank. Between the three of them they finished an entire bottle, and Hyunjin could feel a buzzing in his head, in his chest, a tingling in his limbs as the warmth spread through his stomach. Seungmin was pouring himself another drink, and Hyunjin hurried away before he’d be given another. He felt good, just as good as he’d felt when he drank with just Seungmin that one time, and he didn’t want to be stationary. It was a party, he should be able to loosen up, right?

And so he made his way to the middle of the room, where the coffee table had been pushed towards the sofa to make a large space. A few people were already dancing and Hyunjin decided to join them. After a few minutes someone made their way to him and took his hands, which felt like they sparked at the contact. The person guided his hands to their hips and he swayed with them as he locked eyes. It was a beautiful omega girl, and Hyunjin felt blessed in that moment as he danced with this person. But Hyunjin had a fuzzy recollection of the fact that he didn’t want to get intimate, and that this was how intimacy started, so he pulled away and smiled at her kindly before making his way back to Seungmin.

By now there were, like Seungmin had guessed, around fifty people crammed together in the large living room, some sitting on the staircase, some leaning over the banister on the second floor. The kitchen was flooded and Hoseok was pulling more bottles out of the fridge, laughing hysterically at something said by someone Hyunjin didn’t know. Hyunjin couldn’t find Seungmin anywhere so he collapsed onto a bar stool and watched the party go on from there, occasionally chatting with a stranger, finding himself laughing at almost everything anyone said to him. He felt free.

-------------------------------------------------------

It was a long shift, and Woojin was exhausted by the end of it. They had caught the alpha that had killed the omega by the lake, but it had taken everything in him and Chan to find the person. Chan had finally told him to go home, and for the first time, he didn’t dispute it. He was ready to go eat for the first time since breakfast, ready to collapse into bed only to rise again at five am the next day. His shifts were never consistent, but that was just part of his job, and it was something that he was used to by now.

He checked his phone on the way out of the station, frowning as he saw Hyunjin’s text.

‘Going to Seungmin’s for the night, I’ll see you tomorrow!’

It was reasonable that his little brother would go spend time with his friends, it was a good thing when Hyunjin usually just spent most of his time outside of school at home on his computer. But it still saddened Woojin a little that Hyunjin wouldn’t be home when he got back. He wanted to tell the younger about the case they’d just solved, but that could be saved for another time, he figured.

He drove home, opened the door to the empty, lonely house. Walking in and kicking off his shoes, he made his way into the kitchen to whip up something quick and easy. Usually he and Hyunjin would eat together if they were home and awake at the same time, but otherwise, Woojin barely ate decently. He just didn’t have the energy to cook unless he was considering Hyunjin’s tastes in the meal. He stopped as he was putting a bowl of ramen into the microwave, the picture frame in the corner of the room catching his eye once more.

He stared at the portrait with tired eyes. He missed their parents, Hyunjin probably missed them too. He figured it was kind of shitty that they’d just up and leave their two children to go to some foreign country for work, but when he’d mentioned this to their father a while back, he simply said it was what had to be done and that he trusted Woojin to care for Hyunjin and keep him safe. Woojin didn’t have any qualms with that, but it was lonely for both of them, and they both awaited the day that their parents would come back home.

The microwave beeped and Woojin pulled his food out, sitting at the empty table and staring out the window into the darkness of night. He ate quickly, washed his dish, and made his way to his room to change, brush his teeth, and fall into bed. Another long day, another lonely night. He’d talk to Hyunjin again tomorrow, and that was enough comfort that he could fall asleep.

------------------------------------------------------------------

Hyunjin woke up on the couch of a house that he was unfamiliar with, panicking for a second before he remembered that he was in Hoseok’s house still, and Seungmin was sleeping on the floor nearby. There were at least ten people crashed around the room, but most of the party had left during the night. Hoseok was nowhere to be found, probably asleep in his bed, and the morning light leaking through the window told Hyunjin that it was time to go.

They hitched a ride home with another alpha named Minhyuk who had woken up around the same time they had, Hyunjin only vaguely recalling talking with this guy a lot last night. After confirming that it was after nine in the morning, Hyunjin figured with both relief and sadness that Woojin would already be back at work. It was convenient because he wouldn’t have to explain that he was riding back with someone Woojin didn’t know, or why he had a pretty decent headache at the moment, but he missed his brother.

The house was lonely when he got back. Seungmin had to crawl back through his window the moment they arrived to the neighborhood to dodge his mom noticing that he was missing, and Hyunjin closed his front door behind him only to immediately pace to the kitchen cabinet and grab some ibuprofen. He downed four tablets and took a sip of water, which he knew by theory would help his headache, before making his way back to his room to sit at his computer. He hadn’t checked the website since early last night, and he was surprised to see that he had a message.

J-one: ‘Hey’

That was weird. J-one had messaged him last time on his Jihyo account, but this was his Mina account. He shrugged it off. It wasn’t uncommon for people like this to go to every pretty omega that they saw and message them, so he simply replied.

Penguin_baby: ‘Hello!”

J-one: ‘Send me a selfie? :) cutie’

Hyunjin sighed. People were so direct. But he had no reason not to, given that selfies were just pictures he stole off the internet, so he grabbed one off of Mina’s page like always and sent it with no thought to it.

There was a pause, before J-one was typing again. Hyunjin relaxed back in his seat, stretching his arms above his head. He really hoped the ibuprofen kicked in soon, he was getting tired of his head softly pounding like it was.

Suddenly a message came through, and Hyunjin scanned over it.

J-one: ‘I really wish you didn’t hide your real face.’

His blood ran cold and he sat up straighter. This person couldn’t know, could he? No, he couldn’t know. This was just him assuming that Hyunjin was faking it because Mina was so pretty, right? He could convince J-one that he was really Mina.

Another message came through.

J-one: ‘I think you’re way prettier than these Jihyo or Mina people.’

His hands began to tremble, the dread sunk from chest to stomach in an instant and Hyunjin watched the screen fearfully as J-one was typing again. He’d been caught. He didn’t know how, what he’d done wrong, he couldn’t think of anything that he’d said to J-one in the past to give himself away.

J-one: ‘Something’s wrong though. You smell much more like an alpha.’

Smell… J-one had been around him. And the fear hit him like a bullet, he immediately went out of the messages tab to delete his account, he’d delete all of his accounts, he had to disappear, this person knew who he was, he had to tell Woojin, he had to report this, he had to-

One last message slipped through before he deactivated the account.

J-one: ‘But you’re the prettiest alpha I’ve ever seen, so maybe I can forgive you, Jinnie.’

Chapter Text

“Hyunjin, calm down.”

“What the fuck do you mean ‘calm down’?! He knows me, he knows I’m fake, he knows my fucking name, Seungmin,” Hyunjin rambled, voice shaking almost as much as his hands as he gripped the phone so tightly that his hand began to cramp. Seungmin’s voice was stern but calm.

“Yes, you got caught. But you’re living with an actual police officer, no idiot would try to do anything to you. Just… just lay low, okay? We’ll lay low. School and home and that’s it until this all settles. But don’t delete your accounts or you won’t know what this J-one person is planning.”

Hyunjin took a deep, slow breath. Seungmin was right. As scary as this was, he couldn’t panic, it would only cause more issue for him later. “I deleted the Mina account already. I have four others that I was going to delete, but…”

“Hey, he may not even know the other accounts exist besides Jihyo and Mina. I mean, you could always tell Woojin what’s happening, but…”

“No,” Hyunjin said firmly. “I can’t tell Woojin, he’ll freak out, I can’t have him knowing I’ve been doing this for this long.”

Seungmin was quiet for a moment before sighing heavily. “There you go. You can’t tell Woojin, so we have to handle this ourselves. Keep your accounts activated, even reactivate the one you deleted so that we can keep tabs on this guy who knows you. You’re an alpha, Hyunjin, I’ve never heard of an alpha getting kidnapped or something, you’re probably fine.”

“I’m an alpha that’s pissed off a lot of other alphas, people get killed over things like this,” Hyunjin muttered, shaking his head quickly. Nevermind that Seungmin was right, Seungmin didn’t get it. He didn’t know who he was dealing with, but whoever he was dealing with knew him. How much did J-one know about him? Was J-one at the party? Maybe Hoseok would know who he is…? But he couldn’t go to Hoseok with a username, and he didn’t know J-one’s real name, which left him with nothing.

“Just calm down, okay?” Seungmin said calmly, and Hyunjin tried to breathe. “Reactivate that account. We’ll keep tabs on him.”

“Okay.”

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

“I think I scared him, he deactivated,” Jisung laughed. He’d just gotten back and fell into his chair, playing a game on his phone. Changbin was sitting next to him, reading the finer details of the messages with the man who’d requested this catch.

The target was a boy named Hyunjin, eighteen years old, just about to graduate. He’d logged into the wifi at a fast food chain around twenty minutes from their current location and that was how they got him. Jisung drove to the chain, found the two boys, and narrowed it down to the one who had the same website pulled up on his phone as the one they were messaging the accounts on. It had been easy for Jisung to get into to a party that so many people were invited to, and the host didn’t notice that he was an unfamiliar face. He overheard the conversation between the target and others, heard his name, heard basics about his life. His brother was a police officer, which was inconvenient, but they could get around something like that.

And now Changbin was working out details. Hyunjin was an alpha, but slender in frame and with a pretty enough face to pass as an omega if not for his scent and demeanor. He had to find out what the buyer wanted with him. Jisung was rather proud of his efforts, tracking down someone like this so quickly even between five separate accounts, but the work wasn’t finished until they got their catch and did whatever they were making money to do.

Changbin hummed, and Jisung looked up from his phone.

“What does he want us to do with him?” the younger asked, tapping the pause button on the tetris game and spinning in his chair to face the elder.

Changbin sighed. “He still wants us to kidnap him, but he wants to come see him before making other decisions. I asked if he minds if we rough up the guy and he said he doesn’t, so at least that makes things easier. He wants this done quickly, like, by next week at the latest. Apparently the money we’re getting is a collective sum by five different people wanting this guy torn down. This Hyunjin has made a lot of enemies, it seems, but the guy I’m talking to is the one who wants him taken alive.” Changbin yawned lowly. This was the most tedious part of the process. “It’s also weird that our investor wants to come here. Most investors don’t want to show their faces ever. I guess it matters to him what Hyunjin looks or acts like or something, because he said he wants to come meet him right away.”

Jisung mumbled, “Maybe he wants to torture him himself or something.”

At that moment there was a knock at the door, and the two turned towards it.

“Felix, come in,” Changbin called.

The door swung open, and the omega walked in, a mug of tea in each hand that he approached with to give to the alphas. “Thanks,” Changbin sighed. He could use a real drink, but tea was enough to relax him for now. He always got nervous before an event like this, especially one without clear cut instructions.

“Are you… um, grabbing someone again?” Felix asked, his low voice as curious as it was cautious. They’d captured Felix over a year ago for a target that changed their mind about wanting him, and given that they couldn’t just throw him back on the streets, they decided to keep him. The omega had seemed to grow used to them over time, but with some level of distrust. After all, they were still his captors.

“Yeah,” Jisung said bluntly. “The guy’s about your age, Lix, but he’s an alpha.”

“An alpha? That’s kind of…” Felix trailed off, seeming nervous to dispute one of their decisions. Ever since he himself had been captured he never seemed comfortable with the concept of what the two alphas he lived with did for money, but it wasn’t like he had a choice in staying around them.

“Weird, yes, but we’re being paid a hefty amount of money to keep him for a bit. It might get loud for a while again until we get rid of him, so be ready for that,” Changbin muttered, rereading through the messages he’d been sending with the buyer. Felix nodded, staring down dully at the floor. It was nothing new. From torture to kidnapping, it was just their job. Their only requirement is that they wouldn’t kill someone themselves, but they’d had plenty of experiences giving a target off to someone knowing that the person wouldn’t survive until the next night. It was disheartening, but they’d long grown cold to it. Felix still had some getting used to even after over a year of watching it happen, but he was in no position to argue their decisions.

“I’m going to make more tea,” Felix whispered, his voice weak and unsteady. He bowed and excused himself, closing the door behind him.

“He’s uncomfortable,” Changbin sighed.

Jisung simply shrugged. “He’ll get used to it. It’s part of his life just as much as it’s part of ours. Let’s focus on our target, mkay?”

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

And so he tried to lay low. Seungmin walked him to school and back like usual, but even though they both tried not to worry, Hyunjin would catch Seungmin’s eyes roaming the streets as they walked, scanning for anything suspicious. School was normal, home was normal, and Hyunjin even began to relax. Maybe this J-one thing was just someone trying to scare him after all. How likely was it that someone would really risk coming after him for real? The police would get involved, and he was more safe than anyone else because Woojin was his brother. He didn’t feel in danger anymore by day three, at least until Wednesday rolled around.

Seungmin didn’t show up to his house in the morning, and Hyunjin thought it was weird until he checked his phone. His heart fell a little.

Seungmin: ‘I’m sick as fuck dude, I’ve been throwing up all morning. Do you think you can get to school on your own today?’

He quickly replied back with ‘of course,’ but secretly he was scared. Maybe Woojin would be willing to give him a ride? No, he couldn’t ask that out of nowhere, especially because Woojin just woke up and would be going to work soon. So Hyunjin trudged down the stairs, pouring himself a bowl of cereal, trying to tell the anxiety in his stomach to settle down since he wasn’t in any real danger.

“You okay?” Woojin asked from the kitchen table. Hyunjin nodded.

“Just tired, I stayed up too late last night playing games.”

Woojin shook his head with a sigh. “You have to consider your health, Hyunjin. School gets five times rougher when you’re not awake to properly absorb the material that you’re learning.” But right now he wasn’t worried about school. He was worried about J-one, worried about having been found out. He tried to push it to the back of his mind. ‘No danger,’ he repeated in his head. He wasn’t in any real danger.

“You’re right,” Hyunjin responded, sitting at the table and scooping a spoonful of cereal towards his mouth. Chewing quickly, he asked, “Is work going okay?”

Woojin smiled weakly. It was obvious from the bags under his eyes and the paleness of his complexion that he was exhausted, but Hyunjin wouldn’t mention it because it wouldn’t help either of them at all. They both knew Woojin worked too hard. It wasn’t like anything could be done about it when there was so much crime in the city for the understaffed police to deal with.

“We caught the person who killed that omega. He’s in jail now, serving a nearly lifetime sentence. Work’s gotten a little easier after that case got closed, so now we’re focusing on the things our anonymous guy has sent us.” Hyunjin nodded. He was relieved that the person had been caught, but what Woojin had said afterwards was even more relieving for him. His tips were still being considered by the police. He was doing a good thing by reporting these people, he couldn’t stop just because one got close to finding him out. It would be okay, and this confirmed to him that he wasn’t in any real danger to begin with. He just had to be more careful. He could keep doing this, catfishing these people, as long as he was careful about it.

“That’s great,” Hyunjin smiled, finishing off his cereal and standing to grab some more. Woojin stood at around the same time, but instead of getting more cereal, he put his bowl in the sink. “I’ll wash the bowl when I get home, but I’m a little late. I just wanted to update you on that case before you went to school.”

Hyunjin’s smile faded. “Alright. Well, have a good day at work, okay?”

Woojin rustled Hyunjin’s hair, patting his shoulder afterwards as he headed towards the door.

“You too, Jinnie, have a good day at school.”

Hyunjin tensed a little as Woojin slammed the door shut behind him. ‘Jinnie’ was something that Woojin called him often, it should mean nothing, but after J-one called him that it felt uncomfortable to hear it. But it had been over half a week since J-one had contacted him at all. He’s safe, he kept saying to himself, everything is okay.

Grabbing his backpack, he walked out the door.

Chapter Text

The bell rang and everyone shuffled out of the room in one quick motion, no one wanting to stay to be called back by the math teacher that always had more to say after class. Hyunjin was the only exception, sitting in his seat, staring out at the field behind the school through the only window in the room.

The teacher asked him if he had a ride home, he told her that he was easily able to walk there. It wasn’t far from the truth, but for some reason he felt anxious. Maybe it was the placebo of not having Seungmin that made him think that he was in danger now when he didn’t feel that way before. Walking to school had been fine enough, despite glancing over his shoulder every few minutes to make sure he wasn’t being followed or something. Walking back shouldn’t be any different.

He finally stood. He had to get home somehow, he couldn’t just sit around school until tomorrow came. It would be fine, he reassured himself. After all, it had been a week since J-one had said anything to him. Surely if he were coming to kill him he would’ve tried it by now.

He was so distracted that he didn’t notice himself about to run into someone until the meek voice yelped out, “Hey!” seconds before they would have collided. Hyunjin’s eyes shot up and he took a quick step to the side just in time to avoid slamming right into Jeongin, who looked a little stunned to see him so close.

“Jeongin, sorry, I was distracted. Have a good day,” Hyunjin simply said, walking past the omega quickly and breathing slowly through his lips after a few seconds. He jumped when he felt a hand on his shoulder and whipped around, only to see Jeongin again.

“Sorry!” the younger stuttered. “I didn’t mean to startle you! I just… wanted to um…” Hyunjin wished he could tell Jeongin to get to the point. The longer he spent not walking home, just thinking about the trek back, the more nervous he grew. Jeongin shifted from foot to foot before smiling weakly, as if knowing what the answer to his question would be before he even asked it. “Would you um, want to get food with me sometime? I know you said you didn’t want to date and that’s totally okay! But just as friends?”

Friends. Friends with Jeongin. It was weird to think about. But the puppy eyes the younger was giving him were rough, and he didn’t want to slam a ‘no’ down on someone so desperate to not be alone. Jeongin rarely talked to anyone outside of class, being cute, but awkward enough that no one wanted to hold a conversation with him. Hyunjin felt bad.

So he said, “Sure. I have to head home quickly though. Let’s plan it later, okay?” Jeongin was beaming, quickly replying with, ‘Okay!’ and bowing before hurrying down the hall in the opposite direction of the exit. Hyunjin wondered what the omega was doing staying behind so late, but he put it behind him and made his way out.

There were other people walking home, it wasn’t like he was alone. No one really lived in the same direction as him though, and most actual adults were still at work when school let out. It left him as the only person on the street of the quaint neighborhood at three thirty pm, counting the cracks in the sidewalk as he stepped over them to try not to think about the fact that he was the only one on the street.

A different boy turned the corner, focused on his phone, and the relief was quiet but sturdy in Hyunjin’s chest. He was about half a mile from the house now, and he wasn’t alone on the street. Things would be fine. He came to an intersection, waiting at the stop sign for a car to drive past and turn. The boy on his phone seemed to need to go the same way, because he stopped at the same crosswalk. He stood a little behind Hyunjin, little clicks of the phone’s keyboard being pressed rapidly being a rather comforting sound to someone who didn’t want to be alone.

He’d never seen this alpha before, but he was about Hyunjin’s age. Hyunjin wondered if he went to the same school but doubted it. The guy didn’t have a backpack so maybe he was homeschooled? Hyunjin wondered where he was going, hoping subtly that they would be walking in the same direction until he got home, but doubting that too. The car that had turned was looping around, and the boy looked up as it came to a stop beside them. Maybe he had been texting for a ride. Hyunjin took a step forward to cross the street, to leave the stopped boy behind and continue home. And suddenly the air was knocked from his lungs as his body jolted to the ground.

His head hit the dirt beside the sidewalk hard enough to stun him and he only registered it seconds after when it was all too late. The boy was sitting on his back now, and Hyunjin tried to jolt away but his hands were stuck behind his back, the feeling of cool metal around his wrists being the final straw before his heart began to race and the confusion exploded into fear. He struggled and bucked to get the person off of his back but he wasn’t strong enough to lift another person without use of his arms, and when he parted his lips to yell for the person to get the fuck off of him, a thick, dry cloth was shoved into his mouth and tied around the back of his head. He threw his head from side to side, trying to roll, scream, even just move, but he couldn’t do it, he couldn’t get up, he had to get away, he had to run or fight or do something, anything...!

The alpha pinning him down stood and this was his chance, he tried to jerk to his feet only to stumble and fall again, yelling out through the gag in pure desperation as he tried to stand again and again. This time the guy behind him held him upright, jerking him forward towards the car door. No, he couldn’t get in the car, he couldn’t let him force him into the car! Hyunjin jerked his head back, slamming it into his captor’s, and he was released for just a second. The relief flooded his chest and he turned to run, only to be shoved to the ground again.

“Fucking calm down already!” the attacker snarled. “Changbin, I need backup!” Hyunjin faintly heard the car door slamming, and now there were hands on each side of him hoisting him back to his feet, shoving him towards the car with strength that he couldn’t get away from no matter how hard he tried. The sunlight disappeared from his view as he was pushed roughly into the vehicle and the door slammed behind him as soon as he was let go. The first attacker was sitting beside him as the second male jumped into the driver’s seat. Firm hands were still clenched to Hyunjin’s side, nails digging into his arm as if threatening him not to move. He still yanked away, jerking from side to side, yelling through the gag, tugging at the cuffs holding his hands behind his back. He couldn’t be taken like this, they were going to kill him, they were going to kill him and he didn’t want to die, he didn’t want to die like this without seeing Woojin or Seungmin, he couldn’t let them take him…!

And then, as he jerked from his captor one last time, he suddenly froze. There was something sharp at his throat, and he slowly turned his head to see the alpha’s dark eyes narrowed, his hand outstretched. It felt like… a knife. There was a knife at his throat. Hyunjin’s breath grew rapid and violent, his heart was pounding so harshly in his chest that he could hear it in his ears. He was going to die. Desperate, fearful tears clouded his vision. He was going to die like this.

“Hold still. Don’t make me hurt you,” the attacker slowly muttered. Hyunjin swallowed dryly, feeling the knife press further into his neck just barely as he did. He was trembling, but held as still as he could. “Good,” the other alpha mumbled.

“Hey, cover his eyes,” The driver, the person this attacker had called ‘Changbin’ said in a gruff voice. “Don’t want him knowing where we’re going.” The knife was pulled away and Hyunjin began to squirm again until a sharp noise echoed throughout the car and his face whipped to the side. It was only when the sharp sting began to pulse through his cheek that he realized he’d been slapped.

“Don’t fucking move, remember?” The aggressor growled through his teeth, obviously growing fed up with Hyunjin’s struggle. It was two seconds before darkness encased Hyunjin’s vision and it was immediately harder to breathe. The bag that had been placed over his head was thick, he could feel the weight of it pressing down on his shoulders, and he grunted through the gag more and more until the fingernails were digging painfully into his arm again and it was too hard to breathe to make noise. The ride was silent for an amount of time that he tried to remember but couldn’t. He tried to remember each turn but he was blind in a maze, and after a while he couldn’t remember whether they’d taken two rights and a left or three lefts and a right.

But he did recognize that the car was coming to a stop before it did, the motion jerking him forward a little as the stranger held him to the seat. He was released for only a second before the hands were back on his arm, yanking him from the car, and he stumbled out into the sunlight once more before he was being pushed forward. He obeyed, afraid of the knife that had threatened him before and unable to see to run or fight. The sunlight was warm, filtering through the thick bag over his head just barely, the sweat from his forehead dripped down into his eyes as he tried to force the tears away. Darkness encased him once more and the roughness of gravel under his shoes turned into what felt like wooden flooring. He was in a building. He was in the kidnapper’s building.

He felt nauseous as the second person guided him forward, and he only obeyed until the bag was removed from his head and he was facing a steel chair that was bolted to the floor, the only thing in the room besides a table with various tools scattered over it. The adrenaline shot through his tired body once more, and realizing that they were pushing him towards the chair, he jerked away. Air rushed back through his lungs after he remembered how to breathe, he had to get away, he could still run but if they locked him to that chair he wouldn’t be able to escape..! He was jerked forward and he tugged and pulled, yelling as loudly as he could, but he couldn’t get out of the tight grips on his arms and back. He was going to die here, and the fear, the anxiety, the desperation, the adrenaline, it all fueled furious tears to slip down his cheeks as he was finally tugged around and shoved into the chair, his hands hitting the back of the steel painfully.

One of the captors, the one named who’s name Hyunjin couldn’t remember now, knelt down and began to close thick, leather buckles around his ankles. He kicked forward and managed to kick the guy right in the face, the alpha jerking back, clenching his nose with a loud groan. Hyunjin jerked forward but the second captor forced him back into the chair, and once more the echo and sting of a harsh slap to the face pulsed through his veins. He had been slapped so hard that the room span, and in the time that the vertigo began to settle, his ankles were firmly cuffed to the chair and a belt was wrapped around his stomach to hold him there.

He fought the restraints but they were too tight, too sturdy, he yelled but no one was coming. He was truly trapped, and two pairs of glaring eyes locked onto his desperate ones. He was going to die here.

Chapter Text

Changbin held his nose under one hand, blood dripping down his lip from the kick their hostage had given. What a fucking nuisance. He couldn’t wait to get rid of this one. The boy, Hyunjin, was writhing in his restraints, desperate yells hardly being muffled by their makeshift gag. Jisung glanced over to Changbin, as if double checking that he was alright, before slipping the basic face mask off, throwing it haphazardly to the floor. They had some work to do in this room. The buyer would want confirmation that they’d done what he’d asked.

“Don’t make me hurt you,” Jisung said in warning, the same words he’d used in the car ride on the way there. He slipped his knife from his pocket and flipped it out. Eyeing the knife again, Hyunjin’s struggle only grew stronger. It was a shame they’d have to damage such a pretty face, but they’d done worse in the past. “I’m gonna ask you some questions, and you’re gonna answer. I don’t care how long it takes, but I think that you’ll want it to be over with quickly. Get it?” Changbin glared down the captive before making his way to the table, one hand over his bloodied nose to try and clot the bleeding. As Changbin prepared the tools, Jisung approached the alpha who was strapped to the chair.

In a quick motion, he slit the knot holding the gag in place, and Hyunjin spit out the fabric immediately, tongue poking out from his lips in a probable attempt to remoisten his mouth. Jisung crinkled his nose at the wet fabric in his hand before dropping it to the ground, staring deeply into the other’s eyes. “Changbin, get the camera ready.”

Changbin was already on it, coming back from the table and dropping a few things to the floor. A syringe, another knife, a small hammer, and a gun. He knew that this would be enough, this kid didn’t have a secret big enough to sacrifice his life for it. Even the gun was a little much, but he noted how Hyunjin’s wide eyes locked onto it and figured it’d be a helpful tool. The camera dangled from the strap wrapped around his wrist, and he pulled his hand away from his nose once confirming that the blood wasn’t rushing anymore and that his nose wasn’t broken. Holding up the camera, he clicked ‘record’ and showed Jisung a thumbs up.

Jisung smiled, sweet and kind. “Hwang Hyunjin. That’s your name, right?”

Hyunjin trembled. It seemed that he realized that he was in a place where no one would hear him if he screamed for help, at least no one who would help him. “Yes,” he stuttered out, eyes flicking around the room to all things, the table with the tools on it, his captor’s faces, the tools on the ground, the camera, the gun.

Jisung hummed in approval. Maybe this would be easier than he’d expected. He hoped for Hyunjin’s sake that he continued to cooperate, though he also kind of hoped he didn’t. He could benefit from throwing a punch or two after the adrenaline spike he’d gained trying to wrestle this person to the car.

Jisung began to walk circles around the chair, stepping over the things on the ground, smiling at how Hyunjin tried to turn his head to look at him at each rotation, the boy’s wide stare confirming that he didn’t know what Jisung would be doing behind his back. “Okay, Jinnie.” And Hyunjin’s eyes grew even wider, a faint whine falling under his breath. “Can you tell me why we’ve brought you here today? I think you know, but just confirm it for me.”

“You’re going to kill me,” Hyunjin whispered, his voice hoarse and rough from the yelling he’d been doing nearly the entire ride there. Jisung almost laughed, but he held it in for sake of the camera recording every detail of this conversation.

“Mm, okay. Tell me why you think that.”

And then the boy’s eyes narrowed. “You’re… you’re really going to regret this, my brother’s a police officer, one of the best. He deals with shit like this all the time, you think he won’t come after you? If you kill me he’ll make sure you regret it like hell.”

Jisung heard Changbin sigh from across the room. What a shame. He stepped forward with his own knife, preferring it over the one on the floor. It only took a second to slash a stripe across the boy’s cheek, right under his left eye. Hyunjin yelped and shot his head to the side, trying to get his face away from the knife that was still hovering over it.

“Sure. Let’s pretend like your brother can do something to us. You think he’s gonna burst in here right now with all of his police officer friends? He doesn’t even know that you’re gone yet. I’ve watched you for a while now, Jinnie, scoping out your life and situation. It’s so sad, you only get to see Woojinnie for an hour a day. You think he’ll notice if you’re gone? He’ll just think you’re with your friend again.” Hyunjin shook his head quickly, but the fear blossoming back onto his expression, the paleness of his face, it all gave him away.

“That leaves us with a few days before he notices you’re missing. Quite a few days before he’s able to put his other cases aside to look for you. And as someone who’s done this sort of thing for a while now, I can assure that he won’t find you unless we decide to give you back. And guess what? If you want to go back to your brother, it’s fine! But you’ll be long dead by then.”

Hyunjin was shaking, biting into his lip so hard that a drip of blood formed there. The blood running down his cheek had now reached his neck, and Jisung wiped it off carelessly with the back of his hand, showing Hyunjin the smeared red on his hand with a snarky smile. “You’re not leaving here until we decide that you can. And you’re not ever going to see your brother again until we’re done with you. So maybe you should rethink your situation and answer the questions appropriately.”

Jisung sighed, wiping the blood from his knife onto the denim of his black pants and toying with the blade, opening and closing it halfheartedly. “I’ll ask again. Why do you think that we’d want to kill you?”

Hyunjin’s lip quivered, and slowly he began to speak with a shaky voice. “Because… because I lied about who I am.”

Jisung smirked. “Close! But you’re gonna have to be more detailed than that. Tell me why, tell me the full story. You can’t spare the details now, we have all day to listen.” He stepped forward again, flicking his knife out and gently dragging the tip along the curve of Hyunjin’s shoulder. The smooth blade caught on the fabric of his captive’s shirt, snagging and tearing it, a small pink line traced along Hyunjin’s skin underneath.

“Please,” Hyunjin pleaded, throat hoarse and voice breathy. “Please don’t do this. If you let me go I won’t say anything, I won’t tell anyone, please…!”

Jisung frowned. “Guess it’ll take a while longer then.” He reached down and grabbed the small hammer.

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It had been something near an hour passed, but Hyunjin had long lost count. His face was sticky with tears and blood, and he wasn’t able to stop himself from screaming when the hammer came down on his foot for the third time. He was sure it was broken, at least fractured, and the pain shot up from his leg through his entire body in reverberations.

“Please stop!” he sobbed, choking on saliva, squeezing his eyes shut and feeling more tears drip from them. “I’ll talk, I’ll talk, just stop!” He’d never been in this much pain in his entire life, the worst experience before being a burn from the oven, nothing near as bad as this. His captor pulled away, standing and crossing his arms. The small utility hammer was still in his left hand. Hyunjin felt like throwing up.

“I… I…” he stuttered, but was crying too hard for the words to come out. The alpha took a step forward and he shook his head. “No, I’ll talk, please…!”

“Then talk,” the boy with the damaged nose sighed from behind the camera. They’d been recording the entire procedure, and Hyunjin didn’t have the energy to wonder who the video would be going to.

“I was… I was pretending to be an omega…” he whimpered between breaths. “To trick assholes into saying things that would screw them over… and I reported it all to the police.”

The boy with the hammer smiled and dropped it to the ground. “Good boy, was that really so hard? We’re done here.”

Hyunjin cried as the camera was turned off, he cried as they walked out of the room. Wondering why he’d done something so dangerous to get himself here, wondering if they were right about him never seeing Woojin again. Woojin would be so worried, was it true that he couldn’t be saved? He cried until he was too exhausted and there were no tears left, and the pain trembled through his body until he fell unconscious.

He woke to a soft hand caressing his cheek, something even softer being pressed against the stinging pain there. Slowly he opened his eyes, his head throbbing, the pain from his foot beginning to shoot up his leg again. He let out a whimper.

“Hey, don’t wake up. Go back to sleep, I’m just patching you up,” A deep, smooth voice said. Hyunjin wished that he could just disappear back into sleep, perhaps staying asleep forever until this pain went away, but he couldn’t any longer. “Who are you,” he whispered, unable to gather the strength to lift his head to look. Someone did it for him, tilting his head up. It was a boy with a soft face that didn’t resemble his voice at all, a boy that smelled sweet and soft like an omega.

“I’m just someone who wants to help you. I understand you, Hyunjin.” How did he know his name..? Was he safe? No, he was still strapped to the chair. Hyunjin swallowed, the motion hurting his throat. He wanted to go home.

“For now, try to sleep some more. I’ve cleaned you up a bit, so your wounds shouldn’t get infected. I’ll bring in some food when…” the boy trailed off. “When I’m allowed to,” he finished. Hyunjin didn’t understand the meaning of that. He didn’t have the energy to, but he did comprehend that he was hungry, more thirsty than anything. “Water..?” he asked, fully expecting a no. The boy smiled softly, pitifully. “I’ll get you some.”

The omega stood and walked to the door, Hyunjin already missing his soft hands in comparison to the rough ones that were hitting and hurting him just earlier. The boy turned around at the door and smiled once again. “My name is Felix. I’m here for you, okay?” he said before walking out and leaving Hyunjin in the dim room alone.

Chapter Text

The sun was beginning to set when Woojin pulled into the driveway, the smears of clouds on the pastel sky always being a calming scene after a hectic day. He’d been dealing with domestic violence calls for most of the day. It was always strange how some days came and went without an issue and others, like today, were full of chaos. His mother had some strange theory about the moon cycles affecting people’s moods, but he wasn’t for it, and so he boiled it all down to strange coincidence.

The front door swung open after he turned the key, and he sighed as he walked into a dark kitchen. There was no light filtering down from upstairs like there usually was, so he guessed that Hyunjin was either asleep or not home. He’d been spending a lot more time with Seungmin. It was bittersweet in Woojin’s eyes. He missed his brother, it had been a day or two since they’d talked any more than the bare minimum over breakfast. But it was selfish to wish that Hyunjin would always be home when he was when the younger was being more social than he’d been in years. He was about to graduate, and being around friends was one of the main experiences that he deserved to have in the last portion of his time at school.

And so he set his keys on the table, sighing as he whipped out a tv dinner, peeled the plastic back, and set it in the microwave. He watched the meal spin monotonously, the loneliness sinking in slowly. He was always too distracted at work to really catch it, but in moments like this, eating alone in a dark home just to sleep and go straight back to work, he felt the emptiness creeping in like a storm.

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Hyunjin woke again to pain. He didn’t remember falling asleep, barely even recalling asking the boy Felix for water. His mouth was still so dry that it was uncomfortable. He realized that he must’ve passed out before the water ever came.

He was so tired even after sleeping for what felt like forever. His foot, his face, his entire body throbbed with different kinds of pain, and the anxiety was storming through his stomach. His arms were going numb after being pinned between his back and the metal chair for so long, and he didn’t want to think of how much longer he’d be stuck like this. He felt pathetic. He’d never cried in front of anyone since he was five years old, not even Woojin, but just earlier he was bawling in front of a camera. The stress of the situation, the fear of being kidnapped, and the pain of what they were doing to him had all built up into a tidal wave, and he hadn’t been able to hold it back.

But he wouldn’t let them see that side of him again if he could help it. He’d be tough until Woojin came, either that or until he had a chance to escape. They had to move him at some point right? There had to be some gain for them if they hadn’t killed him yet. Yesterday they’d wanted him to admit catfishing everyone, but if that was all they wanted, wouldn’t they have just shot him with the gun afterwards? And why would the omega Felix be treating wounds of someone who was about to die?

Hyunjin suddenly came to the conclusion that maybe they didn’t want him dead, but he didn’t know what to think from there. If not dead, then what did they want from him? Not knowing was almost scarier, but there was an ounce of relief there. He could survive it, whatever it was, until he could escape. He had faith in his own strength, the strength of the alpha family he took pride in being a part of. If he was going to be a police officer someday, this was his chance to prove himself. He’d get out, and he’d take these guys down too.

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“I don’t like this,” Felix muttered. Changbin blinked up from the computer screen.

“What?”

The omega shrunk back at Changbin’s direct tone, frowning but slowly murmuring again, “I really don’t like this. This reminds me too much of my situation and I don’t like it.” Felix bit his lip tightly when Changbin stood and paced over, flinching a little as a hand was reached out quickly, only to relax when Changbin stroked his hand through Felix’s soft, blonde hair. The elder didn’t attempt a smile, staring down at the younger tiredly.

“I know, Lix. It is a lot like your situation, except it’ll probably turn out worse for him by a long shot. But... and you’re gonna hate me saying this... he really deserved it. Messing with big names is not something you do, and he’s trampled on the wrong people’s feet for too long. This is just what happens, it’s karma in its own disgusting way.”

“But Hyunjin is scared. I’ve never heard an alpha cry like that, he obviously isn’t a bad person,” Felix pleaded, as if convincing Changbin of their captive’s innocence would mean anything in the long run. They weren’t doing this to punish Hyunjin, even if that was a side effect of their cause. They needed the money, they couldn’t afford to turn down just any job when jobs came so rarely these days.

“Yeah, and I pity him. This buyer doesn’t seem like someone I’d want to fuck with. But that’s just life, Felix. Bad things happen to people who play the wrong cards, it’s how we’ve all ended up where we are now. You’re lucky that you got out of your situation, but Hyunjin likely won’t. Because I know you relate to him, I’m letting you take care of him and talk to him. But don’t push it, okay?” Changbin said sternly. “In the end, he’s going to get what’s coming to him, and none of us can prevent that.”

Felix slowly bowed his head, folding his hands in his lap. “I understand,” he murmured softly, sadly. Changbin wished he could do more, he really did. But fate was fate, and Hyunjin’s fate was not something he was able to manipulate. His job was not to be the judge of Hyunjin’s actions, but the executioner of his punishment. His job was to do whatever the buyer wanted him to, anything besides murder.
“Where’s Jisung?” Felix suddenly asked, a little wary as he glanced to the door. Changbin frowned. Where was Jisung? He was supposedly home, they’d seen him less than an hour ago cooking something in the kitchen. Cooking something… Jisung didn’t cook unless he had to.

“I’ll be right back,” Changbin said, keeping his voice calm and slow so that Felix wouldn’t realize what he’d just realized. Changbin wasn’t someone who liked to mess with their captives, he just wanted to get the job done. But Jisung was different. Jisung liked to play.

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The door swung open and Jisung smiled as tired, worried eyes met his own. The boy did have a pretty face, it was true, though it did seem like Felix or Changbin had patched up the cut across his cheek. There was a piece of gauze taped over the wound, and the boy’s left boot was thrown aside, his injured foot wrapped up tightly. The buyer had said they could beat him around if they needed to. He doubted the man would have a problem with an injury that prevented his captive from running away.

“Jinnie,” Jisung cooed. He almost laughed as he saw the catlike eyes narrow at the nickname, but the boy’s lips were tightly shut. He could pinpoint the exact moment that Hyunjin smelled what Jisung had brought in because immediately his narrowed eyes went wide, hopeful. He had to be hungry.

“I made you something,” Jisung smiled, holding out a bowl. Inside was plain, shell-shaped noodles, no seasoning or sauce. It wouldn’t get messy but it would be filling, and surely any kind of food was good enough to Hyunjin who had been captive for about sixteen hours now and likely hadn’t eaten since lunch at school the day before.

“I brought some water too, since I’m sure you’re thirsty. See?” In his other hand was a plastic cup. The hostage’s eyes were focused solely on the cup and bowl now, ignoring Jisung completely. Jisung laughed.

“You were so sweet to me online, you know that? I haven’t talked with a pretty omega in so long, but she turned out to be a pretty alpha!” Hyunjin slowly lifted his glance from the food to Jisung, his gaze uncomfortable and suddenly anxious once more. He obviously wasn’t sure where Jisung was going with this. Jisung got closer, walking up until he was about a foot away and leaning in to Hyunjin. The restrained boy tried to pull away, but winced as he pushed his tied hands further into the back of the chair.

“You have two choices. I like to see people like you act pitiful. It’s fun for me, you know? You can either say “Please give me the food, alpha,” And I’ll feed you, or you can refuse, and I’ll dump this water right over your head. You don’t want to be cold, do you? Aren’t you hungry?” Jisung chuckled.

Hyunjin was glaring now, biting his lip. He seemed to have developed a hatred for Jisung very quickly. With how hard he was crying yesterday, Jisung would’ve expected him to be more pitiful, but what did it matter? After their buyer came it wasn’t like he’d see Hyunjin’s face again.

“Are you gonna say it?” Jisung asked.

“Fuck you,” Hyunjin growled back. The smile faded from the captor’s face, and Jisung wasn’t pleased.

“How boring,” he sighed. “After all that sucking up to gross alphas online, you can’t suck up to me here? You’re pitifully prideful, Jinnie. Oh well.” He lifted the cup and the boy flinched, but it was too late. The water spilled out over Hyunjin’s head, soaking his hair and running down his face and neck into his shirt. Hyunjin coughed as some of the water somehow made it up his nose, the gauze pad on his cheek soaking up water and dampening. Jisung parted his lips to speak again, to patronize more, when the door swung open again.

Changbin did not look happy. If anything, Changbin looked utterly irritated, marching into the room and grabbing the bowl of noodles from Jisung’s still hand. “Go,” he demanded, and Jisung shrugged, muttering a ‘whatever’ and waving to Hyunjin before leaving. He’d had his fun, it was innocent enough. He didn’t want to beat around a boy whose only crime was upsetting some higher ups, at least not too much, but he could still toy with him. Finding fun in their job was all he could do anymore when there wasn’t very much happiness outside of it.

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Hyunjin was shivering. He was cold and wet and furious, glaring down the newcomer to the room as if he’d done anything since recording him earlier. The person who had dumped water on him was assumedly J-one, and this was someone else that he wasn’t sure if he knew. He probably should’ve just played along, been pathetic like J-one had wanted, but it went against everything inside of him to do so, so he didn’t. But now he was soaked and still thirsty as before, his stomach growling at the scent of the food in front of him.

The captor sighed. “Eat. I’m not gonna take this away from you after that asshole did something like this.” He reached for the spoon and gathered up some of the small pasta shells, bringing the spoon to Hyunjin’s lips. It tasted so good for something so plain; Hyunjin had always had a fast metabolism, and even after less than a day he felt like he was going to starve to death. As the captor passed the spoon on repetitively, Hyunjin ate off of it, the room in silence besides the quiet chewing.

When the bowl was empty, the captor pulled away, and Hyunjin blinked as he realized that the boy was staring at him rather blankly for an extended period of time. He suddenly wondered if the food had been poisoned. He had just eaten what was given to him without thinking, and anxiously he asked, “What are you staring at…?”

“Nothing,” the captor sighed, glancing down. The gun, the syringe, the knife, it was all still on the floor just two feet from Hyunjin’s legs. “But someone talked me into being a little more kind to you, so I’ll at the very least tell you your situation.”

The captor frowned. “I won’t tell you my name, but we’ve spoken for a while now. I’m spearB.” Hyunjin’s eyes widened. What..? SpearB had always been one of the friendliest people he’d talked to on the website, always respecting his boundaries. He wouldn’t have ever guessed that spearB of all people would be someone who would try to hurt him.

The alpha continued, “You’ve pissed off a lot of people that you shouldn’t have pissed off, Hyunjin. A lot of big names got arrested because of your seemingly harmless reports. You’ve been giving the police awareness of the underground that they shouldn’t have. That’s dangerous.”

It sparked a little bit of pride in Hyunjin’s chest, knowing that he’d fought crime more vividly than he thought. But spearB’s next words muffled that pride with dread.

“Out of five people who wanted to pay to have you erased from existence, four wanted you dead. You’re lucky that we kidnapped you before you were killed by someone else. The last person wanted you alive, and so we took care of that. He wanted you to admit your crime, and so you did. And now he wants to see you.”

Hyunjin glanced to his feet, trying to slow his breathing. He couldn’t panic now. He had to stay calm.

SpearB glanced at Hyunjin’s wrapped up foot, slowly sighing. “Tomorrow you’re gonna get visited by that person. Expect it to be painful. No one is very happy with you, Hyunjin. You’ll get what you’ve had coming for a long time.”

Finally, Hyunjin couldn’t hold his voice back anymore.

“What does this person want with me if he doesn’t want me dead? And you, what do you want with me? You could just let me go, say that I escaped. If you’re not one of the people that I supposedly fucked over then why are you doing this?”

SpearB chuckled lowly, but it was solemn, bittersweet. “You’re innocent. It’s a shame,” he simply said before turning. “I’ll be back with water. I’ll actually let you drink it, unlike that asshole. Tomorrow will be a big day, so be on your best behavior. For your own sake.”

And he left. Hyunjin found himself alone once more in the dark room, the food not sitting well in his stomach with the anxiety swirling alongside it. He was freezing now, shirt soaked with water from the cup, and the cut on his cheek was itching from the wet gauze pressed against it. He felt so helpless, he hated it. Who was this person who he’d supposedly be meeting tomorrow..? What did they want from him if not to kill him? He couldn’t sleep so he sat in silence, wishing his body didn’t ache so badly, wishing even harder, wishing with everything that he had, that he’d open his eyes and be home.

Chapter Text

“He’s here.” Jisung was passively staring out the window, the curtain brushed aside so that he could note their newcomer before he was even fully out of his car. Changbin paced across the room and glanced out as well, frowning. It was a man younger than he’d have expected, seeming close to their own age. His shoulders were rolled back and he walked with an air of arrogance to his step; Changbin already didn’t like him.

“Who’s gonna let him in?” Jisung asked, glancing up to the supposed leader of their small group.

Changbin sighed. “Me. I’ll be right back.”

He wasn’t excited for this visit. He didn’t like people knowing where they lived and worked, but this buyer was paying too much for him to have denied the request. The man wanted to see Hyunjin, but didn’t want to do it at his own place. He said he didn’t want to risk moving the captive to a place where they could be caught, so he almost commanded that they meet at Changbin’s current location. And who was he to deny a person paying him so much?

He hurried down the stairs as a knock resounded through the empty central room. Changbin brushed by the sodden couch in the corner, clicked on the overhead light, and placed his hand over the gun he’d strapped to his hip earlier. Slowly, he opened the door.

The man was attractive, a strong alpha, his eyes sharp and his confidence demanding. He smiled and held out his right hand to shake. Changbin didn’t release his gun. “What’s your name?” the shorter male asked gruffly. There were two men in suits behind this person, both tall and armed.

“Lee Minho. And you’re Seo Changbin.”

Changbin froze. He’d never given his name to the buyer, he never gave his name to anyone. Slowly his eyes narrowed, and he moved to slip his gun out of its holster only to find two already aiming at his face. Lee Minho’s smile softened, humming under his breath. “Now, now, can we be civil here? Of course I had someone look into you when I’m literally walking into your residence, or whatever you call this dingy place.” Changbin sighed, cautious but still the first to pull his gun away. The two men behind Minho did the same, their dark stares piercing into Changbin’s eyes.

“Come in,” Changbin sighed. He had to be at least somewhat formal to the person who was giving him so much money for a relatively easy hit. Hopefully Minho would just take a look at Hyunjin and then take him away to do whatever he did with people he didn’t like. Changbin didn’t necessarily like it, remembering Hyunjin’s tears during the recording, remembering Felix’s anxiety, but he was cold from years of experience in this sort of thing. He wouldn’t interfere.

He led Minho in, trying to ignore the way the man crinkled his nose at the room that smelled of cigarette smoke and mold. It was the cheapest place that they could buy in the middle of nowhere a few years ago, and Changbin called it home by this point. He didn’t care what some snobby, rich man thought about it. Approaching the staircase, he caught sight of Jisung who was standing near the banister, glancing down. Minho hummed again, waving to the younger boy. Jisung didn’t break his stoic expression.

“That’s J-one,” Changbin said lowly. Minho simply let out an ‘ah,’ hardly interested in Jisung when his reason for being here was just up the stairs. As they passed the last of the steps, Minho suddenly stopped.

“I smell an omega. Is there an omega here?”

Both Changbin and Jisung tensed, and Minho slowly released a catlike smile. “Hey, hey, I get it. It’s your omega, I don’t want it. I was just curious.” Slowly the two alphas settled. Changbin had told Felix to stay in his room no matter what he heard from outside, and he’d been quick to agree, seeming to want nothing to do with the mysterious buyer after his own encounter with one almost a year ago.

They continued down the hall and finally reached the closed door. Changbin took a slow breath before swinging it open and stepping aside for Minho to walk in.

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The light filtered in very suddenly, and Hyunjin blinked awake. He didn’t know how long he’d been asleep for, but upon seeing an unfamiliar face walking into the room, he realized with a start that it must’ve been long enough that the visitor he’d been told about was now here.

Anxiety broke a dam in his chest, flooding in and pooling. This man was the reason he was here, he wanted something from Hyunjin, and Hyunjin didn’t know what it was. He looked… younger than Hyunjin expected, dark blue hair styled perfectly. He looked rich, and the scent of his dominance was vibrant enough to display his confidence before he even fully walked into the room. He locked eyes with Hyunjin and the younger tensed, the man smiling broadly.

“So it was you. Even prettier in person,” he laughed before drawing closer. Hyunjin squirmed in his restraints, knowing that it would do nothing for him but wishing he could do something to keep this man a safe distance away from himself. “It was you that got three of my buyers arrested and five of my men on a watch list.” The man chuckled under his breath. “You know, I would’ve thought it was some omega trying to get back at society for giving them bad genes or something. When I was told that it was an alpha behind everything, I was rather shocked. But now it’s almost funny.”

He drew close enough after finishing his words that he had stepped past the things on the ground and was touching toes with Hyunjin now. “What’s his name again?” the man asked over his shoulder.

SpearB, who was leaning against the doorframe, replied, “Hyunjin. Hwang Hyunjin.” Hyunjin felt exposed, as if this person knowing his name had anything to do with his safety, but said person was already cooing.

“Hyunjin, my name is Minho,” he purred out, reaching out a hand to stroke the younger’s hair. Hyunjin jerked away from his hand, and the smile faded from Minho’s face. “Oh? Oh… right,” he laughed, grin returning upon realizing his fault. “An alpha. I’m dealing with an alpha here.” Within a second his hand was back, grabbing Hyunjin’s hair into his fist and tugging his head back. Hyunjin gritted his teeth and narrowed his eyes as he was forced to look Minho dead in the face. The man had amusement in his eyes, and it only spiked Hyunjin’s anxiety. “You know, Hyunjin, you owe me your life. A few of my subordinates and a few of my colleagues wanted you dead. But no, I had a feeling that there was something to gain by keeping you alive. And I was right.”

Hyunjin had a terrible feeling riling up in his gut and he tried to yank his head away, wincing as his hair was tugged even harder back. “Let go of me!” he growled, and to his surprise, Minho let go. Hyunjin shook his head to settle his messy hair, glaring at the man vividly. Minho was no longer smiling, and no longer seemed amused. His eyes were cold and dark, his face stoic and his arms crossing over his chest. “You act so tough now. What do you think? Would you rather be dead than be in debt to me? I can arrange that.”

He clicked his fingers and a man in a suit marched in past spearB, who did nothing to stop him. The man reached to his belt and pulled… Hyunjin’s heart skipped a beat. The man had drawn a gun, and it was pointing right at him. He heard the click of the safety being disengaged and his heart made up for the skipped beat by racing at full speed, pounding in his head. He was going to die. He was going to be shot here, restrained and alone, without ever seeing Woojin or Seungmin or his parents or anyone again. Minho waved his hand over Hyunjin’s face, but the younger couldn’t take his eyes away from the gun that was pointed right at his head. Minho sighed.

“I’ve suffered some mediocre losses because of you, Hyunjin, and yet I’m still kind enough that you’re not dead yet. I saw how you feared death in that video I was sent.” The video went to Minho… Minho had seen him crying. It meant nothing now, now that he was in so much danger, so much terror at what could happen at any moment. In a second he could be dead. The decision was entirely up to the man in front of him. Minho was still talking, and Hyunjin held onto his voice like a lifeline, listening for any sign that this could be his last breath, listening for anything he could use to get himself out of this situation.

“But I had this idea. If I could tame you, wouldn’t that be great? It would be even better than watching you die for the sin you committed. So many people want revenge, wouldn’t the best punishment be having all of those alphas you screwed over seeing you in such a pitiful way? It’ll be fun.”

Hyunjin was shaking. This couldn’t be happening. He didn’t want to die, but he didn’t want to be humiliated like this either, he didn’t know what this man had in mind for his future and he was scared. He didn’t show it, glaring with a fury he couldn’t hope to actually feel. He wanted, needed to get home, before things got worse, before this punishment came to play.

Minho waved and the gun was put away. Hyunjin could breathe again without it pointing at his head, but his breaths were shallow, the anxiety was clogging his throat. Minho reached forward again, and Hyunjin was too afraid of the gun being pulled again to try and tug away this time, letting the alpha above him stroke his fingers through his hair, tensing at the feeling. Minho smiled once more, the coldness never leaving his eyes.

“You’ll submit to me, Hyunjin, and everyone you’ve reported will watch you do it.”

And then he pulled away and turned to walk out. Hyunjin let out a trembling breath as he watched Minho leave, feeling himself shaking so hard that the cuffs holding his wrists behind his back were digging further into his skin with each tremor. He’d made a mistake in doing any of this, all of this, in thinking that he could be some higher power to judge the wicked. It was all coming back around now, and he regretted every decision that led to this moment vividly.

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“What?” Jisung gaped.

Minho didn’t seem phased. “I’m leaving him with you. For three thousand more dollars, I don’t see the issue. I’m going to let you begin his training while I set up a place in my home to continue it. I’m not as… ah… equipt as you two are in the art of breaking someone.”

“We’ve never done anything long term like this. The longest we’ve held someone before now was three days and you want us to hold him for two weeks longer?” Changbin asked, trying to push the point that this was entirely irrational. Minho only nodded.

“Yes. Just two weeks longer, for three thousand dollars. Follow some orders and that’s it. It’s simple, Changbin, I’m your buyer after all.”

Changbin sighed. “Fine, I understand. We’ll do as you ask.”

Jisung bowed his head, clearly displeased. Neither of them were comfortable with the person they had in their place right now. Changbin had been certain that he’d be cleaning blood off of the walls when the gun had been pulled on Hyunjin, and he was still a little shaken up from it himself, though he wouldn’t show it to Minho.

“Good, I’m glad,” Minho smiled. “Now please escort me out. I’ll send you instructions on how to begin his training via messages, so keep up with them.”

“I understand,” Changbin muttered simply, ready for this guy to be long gone. When the door finally closed behind Minho, Changbin and Jisung turned to look at each other tiredly.

“Two weeks…” Jisung sighed. Changbin simply nodded. “Two weeks and what…? We’re ‘training’ someone now? A human being? This feels weird.” Changbin nodded again to Jisung’s concerns, but stayed quiet himself. His phone dinged in his pocket, and he pulled it out to check the message he knew was already coming from Minho.

‘Put him somewhere comfortable. Feed him, give him clean clothes.’

It wasn’t what he expected, but he was almost relieved. Pampering someone wasn’t his forte, but it was better than whatever fucked up thing Minho probably had planned for later.

Chapter Text

Everything still hurt, but Hyunjin was growing used to it, slowly and steadily. His arms hurt, his foot hurt, his face hurt, but it all was somewhat numbed out by exhaustion, hunger, and worry. He remembered Minho’s words and bit into his lip by nervous habit.

“You’ll submit to me, Hyunjin, and everyone you’ve reported will watch you do it.”

It was a threat that he didn’t want to take seriously but had to. That man had an air of confidence, a strong determination, when he’d said those words. Hyunjin’s chest still tightened when he remembered the feeling of having a gun aimed at him, ready to fire, and he assumed with fearful certainty that Minho would be willing to kill him for real in a bad scenario.

Where did they go? Minho, spearB, and Minho’s guards had all walked out, and Hyunjin had been left in the dark room alone again. The tension was thick through his breath, and while he really wanted to be alone, he didn’t want to be unknowing of his fate for this long. He tried to fall asleep again, his only escape from this horrible situation, but he couldn’t settle the worries racing through his mind. Minho had mentioned taming him, but how could someone ‘tame’ a person, let alone an alpha? It was ridiculous, at least to Hyunjin. He could never see himself following Minho’s prophecy.

The door opened again, and both J-one and spearB walked in. Minho wasn’t there. Hyunjin tensed as J-one approached him, but blinked as the alpha began to fidget with the restraint around his stomach. Were they… were they letting him go? He knew it wasn’t true, but something in his mind was desperately hopeful. The belt around his stomach loosened, and J-one knelt to undo the buckles around his ankles. Hyunjin wondered why they didn’t worry about him trying to escape, but that worry was set aside for a more hopeful mindset. They weren’t thinking about it. They thought he was calm, and they were damn wrong. His right ankle was unbuckled and he was free from the chair. He gave it two seconds before jerking away and running.

The pain of the amount of pressure he put on his right foot was instantly immeasurable, and Hyunjin almost screamed as he crumpled to the floor, curling into himself and trying to will the tears away. His entire leg was throbbing, but his foot that had been hit with the hammer multiple times was in agony. He felt tears that he couldn’t hold back slipping down his cheek, pained gasps passing his lips. He heard spearB sigh before he was being lifted up, shaking his head quickly because no, they couldn’t do this, this was his chance to escape and he couldn’t take it, he couldn’t run…!

“Stop,” he gasped, trying to tug away. J-one grabbed one of his arms while spearB took hold of the other, and they were dragging him across the room towards the door. He struggled but had no strength, his limbs like jelly after being hit with so much pain. “Let go!” he pleaded, but neither of them paid him any mind, as the wooden floors turned into carpet and he was being dragged down a hallway.

He writhed and struggled as much as he could, and at one point J-one dropped him. Hyunjin tugged away from spearB and began trying to crawl, barely getting anywhere with his hands cuffed behind his back still and one of his legs so injured. He heard a frustrated growl from over him.

“Calm fucking down already!” J-one yelled, annoyed. And the pain was back, Hyunjin screaming as a strong force was delivered right to his injured foot. He fell limp to the floor, and didn’t have the strength to struggle as he was dragged the rest of the way through another doorway.

“Felix, can you help?” spearB asked irritably, and Hyunjin blinked up wearily to see the blonde boy from before rushing to the side of a bed. It seemed that they were in a bedroom now, the walls a mint green color and the sheets of the bed made as if it hadn’t been slept in yet. Felix pulled back the blankets with one hand, revealing a long chain underneath with a clasp to the end. It seemed to connect to the foot of the bed, and Hyunjin whimpered at the sight of more restraints.

“Stand up,” SpearB demanded, and Hyunjin tried, he really did, but he couldn’t lift his entire body weight with just one leg and it took both of the captives jerking him up for him to stand. He was pushed forward and fell face first into the soft sheets, turning his head to the side to breathe as he felt soft, familiar hands on his wrists. Felix had taken the chain attached to the bed and clipped it onto his handcuffs, picking up a small lock from the dresser nearby and clicking it on. Hyunjin rolled to his back and sat up weakly, the struggle having exhausted him even more than the hunger was doing. He didn’t attempt to stand again after his last painful try, and it was frustrating beyond measure that the door was open right there, less than ten feet away, and he couldn’t run for it.

“Do you have it from here?” SpearB asked Felix, who nodded assuredly.

“I’ve got it. You can get back to your other work,” Felix smiled, though SpearB seemed uneasy, eyeing Hyunjin warily, the captive staring back with the same cautious expression.

“Yell if something happens, okay? Or call me,” the elder sighed, and after Felix assured him that nothing would go wrong but if it did he would call, SpearB left, motioning for J-one to follow.

“Be good,” J-one simply said, seeming irked ever since Minho had left, though Hyunjin didn’t know why. The alphas left, leaving Hyunjin and Felix alone in the room. It was tense and quiet. Hyunjin barely remembered talking to Felix after the pain he’d experienced that day, but now he was alone with someone who seemed to care about him, which was strange given where he was. Felix was digging through the drawers of the dresser, humming to himself as he pulled out a pair of black pajama pants and a black t-shirt.

“Ah, I forgot that we needed to change your clothes. I’ll wait for them to come back to do it,” he sighed, seemingly talking more to himself than to Hyunjin as he folded the shirt and pants again and set them atop the dresser. He then turned and finally looked to Hyunjin, smiling softly, sympathetically. “Are you hungry? I can cook pretty much anything if you have a preference.”

Hyunjin simply stared at him. It was… weird that Felix was being nice to him. He was being almost too nice given that Hyunjin was kidnapped by these people, and it made the alpha not trust the omega in front of him. Felix rubbed the back of his head at Hyunjin’s silence, shifting on his feet as the tension in the room only grew. “I assume you are hungry, it’s been about a day since Chang… uh, spearB, brought you food last.” Suddenly Hyunjin remembered the name of one of his captives.

“Changbin,” he whispered, and Felix’s eyes widened.

“How do you know that name…?” the shorter male asked cautiously, his calm atmosphere fading into an anxious one. “You’re not supposed to know that name.”

“J-one said it when they were kidnapping me. I forgot it but I just remembered, it’s Changbin.” Hyunjin muttered, glancing down to the bed. His situation currently… Felix was going to feed him, but he didn’t have an appetite after his encounter with Minho even after having not eaten in so long. He really just wanted to sleep again, sleep the days away until Woojin came to rescue him or something along those lines came to play.

Felix’s eyes were dull for a moment before he sighed. “Don’t let… Don’t let him know that you know his name. He’ll get angry,” he simply said, before glancing to Hyunjin’s face, his eyes going wide. “Ah, I’ve been forgetting to change your bandages! I’m so sorry, I’m not used to this sort of thing yet, usually we aren’t caring for the people we take and…” Felix trailed off into a mumbled ramble, but Hyunjin’s heart fell. They kidnapped people all the time, from what he’d gathered, and they hadn’t been caught yet. There was a growing chance that he wouldn’t be saved like he’d expected at first, and Minho’s threat became even more terrifying than before.

“What… What did Minho mean by ‘tame’? What does he want from me?” Hyunjin finally asked, knowing that Felix was the most likely person to answer the question out of all of the kidnappers.

Felix’s self-talk paused, and he turned back to Hyunjin with a solemn gaze. His eyes looked pained, as if he’d remembered something he didn’t want to, as if he was staring into the past rather than at Hyunjin right now. “I’m…” he started, but paused, seeming to choose his words carefully. “Things will be hard, Hyunjin. But… but if you’re good enough, it’s not like it’s hell or something. Once you get past what you’re losing, it’s not as bad as it seems.” He then sighed, bowing his head and sitting at the foot of the bed. Hyunjin realized that Felix must have some strong faith in his kindness, given that Hyunjin could easily attack him from this distance. Felix was smaller and thinner than Hyunjin, he wouldn’t stand a chance. But Hyunjin had no intention of doing so, and Felix folded his hands in his lap, staring at them tiredly.

“I was kidnapped about a year ago and given to this rich couple. They wanted me after seeing me on the street, they stalked me and paid spearB and J-one to get me. It was the same situation, though that sort of thing is more common for omegas,” Felix explained. Hyunjin bowed his head as well. It was true, omegas had to worry about things like this much more than alphas did. Hyunjin never once in his life considered that he’d be a target of such a crime until the solid threat appeared. But omegas constantly had to watch their backs in a city like this one.

“How did you get here again…?” Hyunjin asked. If Felix was given to the couple like Hyunjin would eventually be given to Minho, how did he end up with spearB and J-one for this long?

“The couple changed their minds. I stayed there for about a month before they decided they didn’t want another mouth to feed. They apparently told spearB that if he didn’t take me back, they’d just kill me.”

“And he really took you back?” Hyunjin asked, somewhat surprised. He didn’t see spearB as the sympathetic type. If it were him in that situation, he had no doubt that the man would have just let him die.

But Felix softly smiled, nodding slowly. “It’s a little different. Me and spearB, we have a connection…? It’s a little more private than I’d want to talk about here, but he felt bad for me that day. On the condition that I don’t run away, they took me back. They feed me, they buy me clothes and pretty much anything I ask for. They’re really kind.”

Hyunjin frowned. The same people who broke his foot and dragged him down the hallway were ‘kind’ in Felix’s eyes. He couldn’t understand. “Why don’t you just… run and get them arrested? They won’t be able to come after you if they’re in jail. Like, sure, you think they’re kind and whatnot, but don’t you want to be free?” Hyunjin asked, wondering if Felix even thought of such an option. But Felix frowned deeply, staring into Hyunjin’s eyes as if he were scolding him.

“What’s left for me out there? After a year my friends and parents have moved on. I won’t be able to get a job since I never graduated, I won’t be able to go back to school at this point. They take care of me, they love me. Plus, I’m mated to spearB now.”

Oh. Hyunjin flushed, focusing on his lap awkwardly. He hadn’t expected that. His school kept mating and heats as a quiet thing, not wanting to expose their students to such a thing. His parents weren’t around to teach him about it, and Woojin was too awkward to, so he’d never really gathered what heats and mating entailed. But what he did know was that once an omega was mated, they needed that specific alpha to settle their heats or it would be bad. He didn’t know how it would be bad, just that it would be.

Felix chuckled at Hyunjin’s obvious innocence before a frown spread across his face, as if he’d realized something. Sadness flooded his eyes. “You’re… you’re going to be exposed to a lot of things, Hyunjin. I’ll be blunt, I don’t see this turning out well. All I can beg you to do is just… follow instructions. Be as good as you can, listen to Minho when he tells you what to do and you’ll survive. He’s your life now, that’s just how it works. I know you miss your brother, I know you want to go home. But it’s not rational anymore. I’m so, so sorry, but it’s not going to happen.” The words hit Hyunjin like a train, and his breath caught in his throat. It couldn’t be true. He had to see Woojin and Seungmin again, he had to escape, it was just how things had to turn out. He wasn’t really going to spend the rest of his life under a criminal, was he…? He shuddered.

“But until you go to Minho, I’ll take care of you. And if you’re good, if you follow directions and don’t struggle, SpearB and J-one will likely take care of you, too. They’re not bad people, they’re just doing what they have to do to get by.” Hyunjin felt numb, he felt nauseous. He couldn’t get past Felix’s words from before. Felix watched him for a while but he couldn’t bring himself to glance back to the blonde boy, and soon enough Felix dismissed himself to get Hyunjin food that he wouldn’t be able to stomach no matter how hungry he was.

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“Mom?” Woojin said the moment he picked up the phone. He hadn’t expected a call from his parents so suddenly, right as he was clocking out from work. He held the phone between his ear and his shoulder as he waved goodbye to Chan, who was typing away on a document of the burglary they’d thwarted today.

“Woojin, honey. I’m sorry to call you when you’re at work. I would’ve called Hyunjin but he isn’t picking up, and I would’ve waited but I won’t be able to call later.” Woojin furrowed his brow at her words, slipping his car keys from his pocket as he made his way down the stairs and out of the building.

“What do you mean? What’s wrong?”

“Your father was offered another year here in America. After considering it for a long time, he decided to accept the position.” Woojin felt his heart drop. Oh.

“So you aren’t coming back next month?” he asked. He missed them like crazy, Hyunjin did too, and yet… “Not even for a visit?”

“I’m sorry, sweetie. We’re paying for two houses right now, the one you’re living in and the one we’re living in here, and it’s just too expensive to fly over right now. I promise we’ll come visit the month after next month, or maybe a bit later than that. We miss you two so much.” But he didn’t want to hear it. They didn’t miss them enough to visit, or to even call regularly. Woojin could survive, he was an adult, but Hyunjin was still in school without his parents in his life anymore.

“I’ll tell Hyunjin to call you so that you can tell him to his face. He’s going to be really upset, you know,” he said coldly. He was irritated, it wasn’t fair to either of them that their parents weren’t willing to spend a little money to see them since their last visit six months ago.

“Honey…” his mom pleaded, but Woojin was done.

“I’m going to hang up now, I love you, have a good day,” he muttered before hanging up the call and marching to his car, all but slamming the door closed once he was inside. He sighed, trying to let the frustration out, before driving home. If Hyunjin wasn’t home yet, he’d go to Seungmin. He tried calling the younger, but as his mother had said, Hyunjin wasn’t picking up. It was a little strange, since Hyunjin always answered Woojin’s calls.

He pulled up to the driveway five minutes later, got out of his car, and immediately crossed the street to Seungmin’s house, knocking on the door. It took a few minutes before Hyunjin’s friend answered the door, looking quite a bit frustrated himself.

“Hello… oh,” he blinked. “Woojin.”

“Hi, Seungmin,” Woojin sighed. “I need to talk to Hyunjin.”

Seungmin’s brow furrowed, and he slowly replied, “Hyunjin..? Isn’t he at home? I haven’t seen him in a few days. I thought he was staying home sick or something, he hasn’t been coming to school since Wednesday.”

And Woojin’s heart iced over, a weight dropping into his stomach like a boulder. “What…?” he asked slowly, just to confirm, because Hyunjin wouldn’t disappear like that without telling Woojin or Seungmin where he was going, and he’d never skipped school before.

Seungmin seemed anxious as well, shifting on his feet. “Yeah, he um… He hasn’t been at school. He hasn’t been answering my calls. Nothing. I thought he was mad at me this whole time or something, I should’ve come over to check in but I was worried about it.”

Woojin tried to steady his breathing, but it was coming out in quick motions. Hyunjin was gone. No one had seen Hyunjin in three days. “Are you one hundred percent sure he hasn’t been coming to school this whole time?”

Seungmin nodded grimly. “Not since Wednesday.”

Today was Saturday. No one had seen Hyunjin since Wednesday. How was he so stupid?! How had he not noticed?! He’d just assumed that Hyunjin had been with Seungmin this whole time, how could he not have known?!

“Woojin, what does this mean…?” Seungmin asked shakily. Woojin shook his head slowly, then rapidly. It couldn’t be true. Was Hyunjin really missing?

“Would he have ran away…?” Woojin asked, his voice trembling. Anything. Anything to assure him that his little brother was okay somewhere was enough. But Seungmin shook his head.

“I’m positive he would’ve told me if he did. Let’s… Let’s go look for him okay?” the younger offered, as if realizing that Woojin was borderline panicking. “Let’s go to all the places he would possibly be and ask if anyone’s seen him. I’m sure someone has. They’ve had to have seen him, right? He can’t have just disappeared.”

Woojin nodded, Seungmin ran to tell his mom what was happening. She didn’t believe him, storming out of the house only to see Woojin’s pale face. Her own face paled, and she allowed her son to leave with Woojin. They drove around for hours, stopping at the ice cream shop Hyunjin loved to go to, the school, Hoseok’s house, even Woojin’s own house just in case he might be in his room sleeping or something. There was no sign of him, and no sign of him having ran away or gone somewhere else.

Hyunjin was gone.

Chapter Text

Woojin sped half of the way back to the police station after dropping off Seungmin at home. The younger boy had practically begged to stay with him, desperate to learn something about his best friend’s disappearance, but Woojin couldn’t show him the classified information he was about to search through. He jumped out of his car moments after parking it, the harsh night winds hitting his face like a whip as he got out. It was going to storm soon, it felt appropriate.

He ran into the building, not looking where he was going, suddenly slamming into something in front of him. The collision was powerful enough that both Woojin and a surprised Chan fell to the floor, Chan yelping in surprise as his laptop bag clunked against the tile. “Woojin..?!” he asked, obviously shocked that someone, let alone Woojin, was in the station this late besides himself. “Didn’t you go home?”

Woojin jumped to his feet. He didn’t have time, he had to go scan the cameras around the city, notify the school to look out, he had to-

“Woojin…?” Chan asked, his voice softening as he seemed to note the desperation on his coworker’s face. Woojin bit his cheek. He had to calm down. He reached a hand down to help Chan up, the other thanking him quickly. Before Chan could ask, Woojin opened his mouth to tell him what had happened. He found that he couldn’t form the words.

Seeing him speechless, Chan knew that something was very wrong. He took Woojin’s hand and led him up the stairs to their shared office, sitting him down and going to the coffee maker to brew a cup. Once the correct buttons had been pressed and the machine whirred to life, he sat down across from Woojin and folded his hands softly. “Woojin, what’s going on?”

“I… He’s…” Woojin stumbled over his words, the thoughts and fears racing through his head. He should’ve noticed Hyunjin wasn’t home, he should’ve recognized that as unusual, he should’ve called the younger, he should’ve checked in. How long had Hyunjin been missing..? It was at most three days, at least one. At least one day… So much could happen in one day, let alone three. Was he alive?

Woojin’s heart froze over. What if Hyunjin wasn’t alive?

And that thought was what broke him. He choked on a sob, bringing his hands to his face and bowing his head. What if Hyunjin was dead because he hadn’t checked in? He wouldn’t have the chance to say goodbye, to say that he was sorry. He wouldn’t ever see his little brother’s face again if that were the case, they wouldn’t have breakfast again, they wouldn’t talk about Hyunjin’s games again. They wouldn’t sit and talk about Woojin’s job over bowls of ice cream in front of the tv again and-

“Woojin…” Chan softly said. “I need you to talk about this, something must be seriously wrong. If you came here, it must mean that you thought being here would help, right?”

Woojin nodded, trying to gather his breath to explain, but everytime he thought of what he was about to say, he lost his speech. It was as if he hadn’t accepted that it was real yet, as if telling Chan what was happening would make it a solid reality. But finally he fought it.

“Hyunjin… Hyunjin’s gone,” he mumbled, his body trembling with sobs. “I don’t know where he went, but he’s been… been missing school for the past three days according to his friend, I haven’t seen him in three days either and…” he couldn’t continue. Chan was wide-eyed, lips parted as if he’d lost his breath as well. The machine beeped in the corner but both of them had long forgotten about the coffee and long lost their appetites for it.

“What if he’s dead, Chan…? What if he’s-”

“Don’t finish that thought,” Chan said sternly. “What do we tell the families of missing persons when we first visit them?” he then asked, staring at Woojin determinedly, the shock having faded into something more controlled.

Woojin glanced up, eyes red and cheeks wet with tears. “Hope for the best, be prepared for the worst, and don’t assume anything,” he quoted before slowly shaking his head. “But that’s not applic-”

“It is one hundred percent applicable here. Hyunjin is a missing person now. He’s a person that it’s our job to find. And we will find him, Woojin. If you say that he could be dead and give up now, you won’t have the right mindset to save him if he isn’t. Hyunjin is strong. Wherever he is, I trust that he’s holding up okay. We don’t know what happened, but we will absolutely find out. Okay?”

Chan was right, Woojin thought, trying to take steady breaths. “Okay,” he said back with a heavy sigh. The rain that he’d expected was now pounding on the roof above them, lightning flashed through the window. “Three days… Fuck, Chan, we’re so far behind already if we start searching for him now.”

Chan nodded grimly. “But if we don’t start now, we’ll be even further behind. Let’s stay up tonight, stay here and do some searching. I’m not tired enough to go home anyway, so let’s work all night to find him.”

Woojin nodded. He was grateful to have someone like Chan who would be willing to do this for him. Chan had the biggest heart of anyone he knew, and he was glad that he wasn’t alone here panicking like he probably would be had he not bumped into the other alpha.

Chan turned to his computer, clicking open some files. He typed a few things into a document, and Woojin recognized it instantly. He was starting a missing persons report. It would be spread to all nearby stations, posted on billboards, and played on tv. While he did this, he started to go over the basics.

“We have a few options of where he could be. He could have ran away, but that doesn’t seem likely since you two get along well.”

“His best friend would’ve known about it too,” Woojin added in tiredly. “Hyunjin tells Seungmin everything.”

Chan nodded. “Hyunjin isn’t suicidal as far as I know, so I don’t see that being an option either.” Woojin agreed. Sure, Hyunjin was sad for a few months following their parents leaving the country, but he’d never once mentioned wanting to hurt himself or die. He seemed perfectly fine on Wednesday morning as well.

After some finishing touches, Chan scanned over the image he’d made. Woojin’s heart fell when he saw the familiar report, the report they made for a number of missing omegas across the city. This one had his little brother’s smiling face on it, his little brother’s name and age. Chan turned in his spinning chair, finally releasing a hefty sigh. “And then there are the things that I don’t want to think about, but we have to go over.”

Woojin bowed his head once more. “He… he could be dead,” he said, forcing the words out and trying to numb himself to them. They were just words, not fact. It wasn’t a fact until they knew.

“Or, he could have been kidnapped,” Chan said slowly, staring at Woojin in a deep way that only Chan could really pull off, a manner of staring at someone so deeply that it seemed like he could see into their souls.

“Who would kidnap him though? Someone with a grudge?” Woojin asked wearily.

Chan nodded. “Potentially. We’ll go to his school when it opens in the morning and find out if he had any issues with anyone. It’s… it’s also not entirely uncommon that a stranger could have done it.”

Woojin felt like he was going to break down again, but he held it back with all of his restraint. He had to be strong for Hyunjin’s sake, he had to find him before it was too late, if it wasn’t too late already. Chan was right, they’d only be set back further if he spent this time grieving instead of searching for him. Woojin steeled himself with determination.

“We’ll find him,” he said, more to himself than to Chan, but Chan smiled towards him and nodded.

“Yes, Woojin, we absolutely will. Now let’s get to work.”

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Changbin woke up in the morning to a soft, pleasant but demanding smell. He recognized it instantly, the smell of his mate. He sat up in the bed and rolled over to stroke a hand through Felix’s hair. The other’s forehead felt hot, and Changbin frowned as he took note of how the younger was whimpering in his sleep, subconsciously kicking the blankets off of himself. Had he started his heat early? It wasn’t due for another few days.

“Lix, wake up,” he sighed, but the other was lost in sleep, settling down just a little. Changbin gave it a few more tries before standing to get dressed. He was hard and a little breathless, his body reacting to Felix’s powerful scent right now, the omega’s heat increasing his pheromones to where they could be sensed from across the house. It was really inconvenient that it had come on so suddenly, and Changbin made coffee as he wondered why it came earlier than the date that it was supposed to.

Jisung walked into the kitchen, groaning as he sat down at the table. “Lix’s heat started didn’t it,” he muttered, rubbing his eyes to wake up. “Fucking hell, I wasn’t ready for that hard of a scent when I woke up.”

“Me either,” Changbin mumbled. The air in the house felt stuffy with Felix’s scent, it was almost overbearing. If he hadn’t fucked Felix recently he would’ve been a lot more triggered by it, but thankfully he was a little more stable. Jisung however hadn’t really gotten off with anyone in a while, and he obviously seemed irritated and discomforted by the scent.

“Can you just like… go wake him up and fuck it out of him? I really don’t want to deal with hormones right now when I already have to take care of the brat upstairs.”

Changbin froze, nearly dropping the mug he’d just pulled from the cabinet. Fuck, Hyunjin was here.

“Hyunjin’s never been around a heat has he?” he asked warily. “He’s still in school. They don’t let alphas and omegas go near each other when the heats come,” he said slowly, the realization hitting him like a rock to the face. This might be a bigger problem than he’d initially assumed by far.

“Fuck,” Jisung muttered, seeming to realize just as well that there would be trouble once Hyunjin woke up. An omegas heat was warm and inviting, the scent of it alone was powerful enough to warm an alpha’s blood being near it. But for an alpha that had never been around a heat before? It would be much, much harder to control the natural desire to go after that scent. It was almost always a painful first experience, an experience Hyunjin probably hadn’t dealt with yet.

“Who’s going to deal with him…?” Changbin asked, pleading that Jisung would accept the role. Jisung just sighed, slamming his hands down on the table and standing.

“I just wanted to eat some good fucking waffles and now I have to go deal with some horny brat,” he mumbled to himself, marching out of the room. He yelled over his shoulder, “You’d better fuck the heat out of Felix today! I am not dealing with this until it settles itself, you hear me?!”

Changbin groaned, deciding he wasn’t in the mood for coffee anymore. This was a mess. He could only imagine what Jisung was about to deal with, but for now, he’d go try to wake up Felix again and hopefully resolve things quickly.

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He was hot. Everywhere. His entire body was burning like it was over a fire and he didn’t know why. The air was heavy and thick. Did he have a fever?

Hyunjin tossed and turned, long having kicked off the blankets, though the sheets underneath him were damp with his sweat and he still couldn’t cool down. His clothes were hot, he needed to take them off, but he couldn’t do it with his hands locked behind his back. It felt awful, how warm he was, and he almost felt a little nauseous from the sweet scent hanging vibrantly in the heavy air around him.

He had a desire, a desire for something he so desperately felt, but he didn’t know what it was. He wasn’t hungry, not at all, and he wasn’t tired. It was something more carnal and he couldn’t explain it, couldn’t follow it. He was so desperate that he could cry, all for something that he didn’t even know.

The door swung open and he turned towards it wearily, noting that J-one was staring at him with a look on his face that Hyunjin didn’t understand nor care at all about. All he could understand was that the smell only grew stronger as the door opened, and he whined as the weight of the air grew even heavier around him, as his body seemed to only get hotter.

“What… What is this…?” he asked weakly. Did they drug him? Is this what drugs felt like? Why would they do this to him…? Was it another punishment?

J-one sighed, rubbing his eyes slowly before approaching the bed. He didn’t seem to know how to react to Hyunjin’s struggle, which Hyunjin didn’t understand.

“It’s hot,” he whimpered, biting into his lip. J-one was staring at him almost pitifully and he hated it but he couldn’t fake that he was okay right now. Finally the other alpha spoke.

“Uh… so. Did your brother ever teach you about heats?”

It was so random that it woke Hyunjin up from his daze a little, but he fell right back into it as another wave of discomfort wrecked through his body. He wanted something, he wanted to touch something, he wanted to touch the person in front of him, he wanted J-one to touch him. Where were these thoughts coming from?!

At his lack of response, J-one gave up, approaching the bed cautiously. “Try to hurt me and I will literally strangle you,” he threatened, appearing entirely unsettled by the situation at hand. “I’m… I’m gonna touch your arm.”

He reached forward and Hyunjin didn’t move, but the moment J-one’s fingers grazed his arm he was sighing. The touch was cool and it felt good. He wanted more.

“More,” he actually said without realizing he was saying it, eyes widening a little at his own words and a blush crossing his already flushed face. What was he doing..?!

J-one knelt against the bed, reaching out his hand tentatively, as if about to touch a wild animal. When the touch connected and both of them sighed, Hyunjin realized what he was craving was human contact. This man literally was smashing his foot in just a few days ago and now he was going to let him touch him? But it felt so relieving, he tried to ignore the thought.

“I’m gonna keep touching you. I’ll tell you my name only because I don’t want to hear that crappy username coming out of your mouth in a few seconds.” J-one said, slowly stroking his hand down Hyunjin’s arm, the other almost squirming with relief at the cool feeling that trailed down his body, straight to his dick which he realized was harder than he’d ever noticed it being before.

“My name is Jisung. Try not to be too loud with it, and I’ll try to forget that this ever happened.”

Chapter Text

Hyunjin felt a lot of things as J-one, or Jisung, crawled over him. At first he felt relief. It was fluid throughout his body, a breath of fresh air when everything else felt so hazy and overbearing. As the other alpha’s hands dragged down his sides he lifted his hips and writhed a little at how damn good it felt. Jisung wasn’t looking at him, rather focusing on where his hands were going as they made their way quickly to Hyunjin’s pants, plucking past the button and zipper and slipping them down along with his boxers.

Hyunjin felt a little exposed at this point, but still relieved, and he gasped as Jisung’s calloused hand wrapped around his dick and began stroking it. His back arched a little, he felt so much better than he had seconds ago, he wanted more. Jisung pumped him quickly, sitting on his thighs to keep them down as Hyunjin kept struggling to thrust further into his hand. As Jisung stared solely at what his hands were doing, Hyunjin stared at Jisung.

This is when something uncomfortable began to form in his chest, a hint of reality behind the haze of his hormones. He knew that he should hate this person. He knew that he did hate this person. This was the person that dumped water over his head and likely broke his foot and fuck, this was the person who kidnapped him in the first place. But suddenly it was like those big issues didn’t matter anymore, like he could brush it all aside because shit, Jisung’s hands on him felt so good.

“More,” Hyunjin whispered under his breath, over and over, because as good as it felt he wanted it to feel even better. Jisung hummed in response every time, a bittersweet smile on his face that Hyunjin had never seen before. He was tracing his nails down Hyunjin’s chest as he stroked him, and Hyunjin was living for it.

And then they locked eyes. This was when Hyunjin realized that the feeling in his chest wasn’t just a passing thing. He knew it was real, because despite that smile Jisung’s eyes were cold and uncaring as before. The alpha above him hummed once more before chuckling lowly, bitterly, under his breath. “Look at you. Isn’t it kind of pathetic?”

Hyunjin shifted a little, trying to get more friction between Jisung’s hand and his cock, trying to do anything to make Jisung go even faster, to do more, to touch more, anything. But Jisung stayed at his own pace and used his other hand to firmly push down Hyunjin’s hips for the tenth time.

“You’re an alpha, you know? And here you are begging me for more like a bitch. Felix has more balls than you do, at least he can keep his mouth shut. Where’d all that pride go, huh? All this time I just had to touch your little dick to get you to submit? Minho’s gonna have a field day when he finds out.”

And that tiny feeling in Hyunjin’s chest turned into a tidal wave, hitting him full force. He shouldn’t be here. He shouldn’t be enjoying this. He shouldn’t be letting Jisung anywhere near him.

“G… Get off,” he mumbled but he couldn’t raise his voice, not when the pleasure was still pulsing through his body.

Jisung almost snorted. “Now you want me off? What do I get out of this? I’m feeling Felix’s heat too you know.” It hit Hyunjin again and again. Of course Jisung wouldn’t listen to him, wouldn’t respect his worries, because Jisung was a fucking horrible person.

“Get off of me!” he gasped, trying to twist his body to knock the other male off. He writhed until he felt the increasingly familiar sting of a slap to the face, biting into his lip to keep from crying out at the shock. Jisung was staring down at him, blank faced, something akin to pity in his eyes.

“Calm down,” he simply said, before going back to Hyunjin’s dick like they’d never had a conflict. Hyunjin opened his mouth to yell, but Jisung wasn’t looking at him anymore, focusing back on his hands once more. Hyunjin didn’t want to be warm, he didn’t want this burning feeling in the pit of his stomach, he didn’t want to crave this touch, he didn’t want any of it. He wanted Jisung to leave, but was that really what he wanted? If Jisung left, the fire would come back, the air would be stuffy and uncomfortable again.

“You don’t realize that I’m helping you,” Jisung said under his breath after a minute of quick breaths and sweat between them. “Minho is going to make you do a lot of things you don’t want to do, and you need to be prepared for that. Disobey me and you get a smack to the face, disobey him and… well…” It kept hitting him, that sharp feeling in his chest, the pain and fear mixing with the arousal in a disgusting, uncoordinated mess, like oil and water trying to swirl together. He felt like crying but he held it back if only because he didn’t want Jisung to see his tears ever again.

“You’re already lucky, you know,” Jisung continued lowly, as if he wasn’t literally pinning Hyunjin down and stroking him right now. “I’ve had buyers pay us to kidnap people just to torture them until they died. I thought that’d be you too. I thought Minho would come in here and beat you to death for how many people you’ve pissed off.” Hyunjin shivered, he felt a wave coming, he didn’t know if it was the arousal or the despair that was winning but it was getting to be overwhelming. “But you’re going to live, as long as you’re obedient. And that’s lucky. You’re fortunate, Hwang Hyunjin, so just… just suck it up.”

Was Jisung trying to comfort him? Teach him something? He didn’t have the mind to understand it anymore, the feeling coiling up in his stomach, his hips twitched and he was coming over Jisung’s hand, panting and whining at the dysphoric feeling of being both satisfied and beaten down over the past few minutes.

Jisung crinkled his nose, wiping his hand on Hyunjin’s shirt until the fabric felt damp from his release. He stood, sighing and glancing down at Hyunjin, who felt too weak to even move, let alone try to start an argument.

“You’ll figure it out, or you’ll die. That’s just it.” Jisung then turned to walk out, stopping at the door to look back at the mess he’d made.

“And by the way, you’re welcome.”

Chapter Text

Changbin sighed as he entered his bedroom again. It was going to be a long two weeks dealing with Hyunjin. He knew this to begin with, but this incident only exacerbated that knowledge into something almost overwhelming. He just wanted Minho to take the kid so that he could be over with it and move on to another job. But the pay was too good to turn down.

“Bin,” Felix cooed from the bed, and Changbin hummed under his breath, walking up and glancing down to the omega who had kicked off all of his blankets and thrown the pillow to the foot of the bed. “Bin, I’m hot.”

“That’s the point of a heat,” Changbin chuckled softly, reaching down and stroking a hand through Felix’s soft blonde hair. Felix sighed at the feeling and Changbin sighed at the image of him, crawling over Felix on the bed until he was laying next to him.

“Are you feeling okay? Do you need water?” Changbin asked, grazing his hand up and down Felix’s stomach soothingly, taking his chance to brush the younger’s shirt up at the same time. Felix tensed a little as Chanbin’s hand grazed across his bare skin. His eyes squeezed shut.

“I need you to touch me more than I need water,” the omega groaned, and Changbin could absolutely do that.

“Take off your clothes then,” Changbin said, already following suit to his own words and pulling his own shirt off as Felix did. The younger sighed softly as he threw his shirt across the room, and Changbin brushed Felix’s hands away from his pants so that he could unbutton them for him, slipping them down.

“I’ve missed this. It’s been a while, hasn’t it?” he said as he pulled Felix’s cock from his underwear, giving it a few strokes. Felix arched his back, digging his fingers into the sheets. He was always so much more sensitive during his heats. Changbin lived for it.

“So long, too long,” Felix whimpered and Changbin chuckled, slipping down Felix’s pants and underwear fully and sitting up to stare down at the beautiful body under him. Little freckles dotted Felix’s shoulders and cheeks, his form was slender and pale. Changbin hadn’t believed it when the couple who they’d given the omega away to had wanted to give him back, he even complained about it. But now he felt a lot more for Felix than just attraction to his body. There was something there that he’d have called love if he believed in love to begin with. For now, he called it fondness. He felt a powerful fondness for Felix.

Changbin brought his hands softly to Felix’s waist, rubbing at the sides of his stomach with his thumbs before turning the younger around so that he was laying on his front. Felix glanced back over his shoulder, sweat already forming on his forehead. “I missed you,” he mumbled into the sheets, Changbin nodding quickly. He’d missed Felix too. With their new job, he’d spent so much time researching and finally actually kidnapping Hyunjin that he hadn’t had time to spend with Felix almost at all. But for Changbin, saying ‘I missed you too’ was too difficult. He couldn’t articulate how he felt for the omega very well at all. It was like there was a wall there, standing between his feelings and the words that he could vocalize properly. So instead he showed his feelings with his hands, sliding them from Felix’s waist to his hips, around his ass, spreading him open and smiling.

“You’re a little more damp than usual, Lix, were you thinking about something?”

Suddenly the blonde boy blushed furiously, his cheeks bright red, and he quickly shook his head.

“No?” Changbin asked with a grin. “Come on, tell me.”

“I was…” Felix stopped, sighing and mumbling under his breath. “Thinking about you doing this. Touching me. Doing more than touching me.”

Pleased, Changbin pressed one of his fingers past Felix’s rim, the younger tensing as Changbin’s finger slid in smoothly. He moved in and out until the other seemed to relax, then added another finger. It only took a few minutes for Felix to be holding four fingers, his body loosened from the heat, moaning each time Changbin pressed his fingers into him.

“Want you,” he gasped as Changbin pressed against his prostate, and the alpha pulled his fingers out, giving Felix’s butt a soft tap. “Want you to fuck me, Bin,” Felix purred, his eyes glazed a little, a flush permanent on his face.

“Roll over then,” he simply replied and Felix quickly obeyed, rolling to his back again and spreading his legs. He looked so good like this, Changbin thought. He always looked good, but especially like this. He lifted Felix’s hips and aligned his dick with his hole.

Changbin pressed in slowly and fuck, the heat, tightness, and slick of Felix’s hole was already bliss for him as he pushed his hips forward until he was fully sheathed. Felix whimpered and writhed beneath him, and Changbin paused to make sure that he was okay. As if catching his thoughts, Felix sighed, “Keep forgetting how big you are. Feels so good though…”

And that was cue enough to move. Changbin pulled out slowly and pressed back in just as slowly, over and over until he was sure that Felix wouldn’t be hurt by him picking up the pace. And he did just that, suddenly thrusting forward so harshly that Felix shifted on the bed, gasping out and clawing into the sheets below him. Changbin smiled, burying his fingers into Felix’s hips to hold him still and pulling him into his thrusts, pounding his hips forward as fast as he could to give as much pleasure to his omega and himself as he was able to.

Felix’s soft ‘ah’s or curses under his breath were all powerful motivation and Changbin groaned, leaning down to kiss, Felix’s gasps brushing against his lips, his moans mixing in with Changbin’s own. It all felt so good, so warm, so inviting. He kissed Felix as he pounded him vigorously, their lips molding against one another. Felix’s voice was getting higher in pitch, Changbin knew he was close, and with that he angled himself perfectly, intentionally, to press right into the spot he knew would make Felix see stars.

Felix’s fingers dug deep into his back, scraping down it as Changbin wrecked him, the omega crying out in pleasure, gasping and moaning, and Changbin was close, fuck it felt so good, he was so close…

Felix came over his chest in little spurts and the tightness of the younger tensing around him had Changbin coming too with a gasp, tensing hard and then relaxing slowly as they both seemed to collapse into the feeling of bliss that came from the fading high.

“I love you,” Felix mumbled, hugging Changbin tightly once the elder had rolled off of him. Changbin only squeezed him tighter, not knowing how to respond like he never did, kissing Felix deeply so that he wouldn’t have to force himself to speak. And the younger seemed perfectly fine with this, kissing back slowly until the exhaustion wore him to sleep.

Changbin layed in bed, staring at the ceiling as he listened to Felix’s soft breaths beside him. Did he love Felix? He asked himself every day. He wanted to say yes, but love was a dangerous concept. Felix was technically just another captive, but that felt wrong to think about. Instead, he pulled the omega into his arms, sighing as Felix instinctively hugged him in his sleep. Regardless of whether he loved Felix or not, Felix was the only one that made him feel comfortable like this. And that was good enough for him.

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The admin’s eyes were wide as the two officers stepped past the sliding doors of the school’s office. The poor woman quickly stood, bowing and asking with an overly pitched voice, “Can I help you, sirs?”

Woojin took a deep breath before stepping forward. His eyes were tired and his face was worn after a full all-nighter and a few breakdowns throughout it. The admin seemed to note his exhaustion, her own expression softening. It comforted him a bit and he spoke with a fake, neutral tone.

“Hwang Hyunjin is a senior at this school. Can you look up his attendance records?”

“Hyunjin, you said, right? I know him, he comes in here sometimes to talk with me! One moment…” She typed furiously away on the old keyboard behind the desk, humming when she noted whatever was shown on the computer facing away from them. “It seems… It seems like the last time Hyunjin was at school was Wednesday. He was marked present in all of his classes on that day, but he was marked absent every day following until now.”

Woojin’s heart fell. Seungmin was right.

The admin frowned, tilting her head. “But why would the police care about Hyunjin’s records? He’s not in trouble is he?”

Solemnly, Chan stepped forward and handed her one of the many papers they’d printed out last night. Seeing Hyunjin’s face under a label that said ‘Missing’ seemed to snap the woman from her cheery image, and her face paled as her head shot back up to look at them again.

“Hyunjin is missing..?” she asked, voice squeaking a little. Woojin bowed his head, and Chan solemnly nodded.

“He’s been missing since Wednesday as far as we know. We want to interview some students in his class that could know more than we currently do about his whereabouts. Would that be alright?” Chan asked. Woojin focused on the flower pen on the desk, the painting across the room, the speckled carpet, anything that could potentially distract him. None of it was enough to dim the pressure growing in his chest from this whole ordeal.

“Of… of course,” the admin nodded slowly, staring down at the paper sadly. “The class that Hyunjin’s supposed to be in right now is his first period, which is English… I’ll write down the room number. Go ahead and tell the teacher that I sent you.”

Woojin thanked her and took the sticky note with her scribbled handwriting of the room number. They paced down the nearly empty halls, occasionally passing a stray student that would stare at them in shock. It was the reaction they often got when they came to places like this in uniform. Police were only at dangerous areas, or places that could be dangerous if they weren’t there. That was what citizens tended to think until police were in homes and schools for reasons like this.

Woojin knocked on the door to the classroom before peeking his head in. The teacher was a young alpha woman who’s brow furrowed when she noted them. “Can I help you?” she asked curiously, pausing a video that she was teaching over so that she could hear his response better. Every pair of eyes in the room turned towards Woojin, every student was present except for one missing seat in the corner by the window. Woojin felt sick, but he tried not to show it. He made eye contact with Seungmin, who nodded slowly. He also looked like he hadn’t slept at all last night, bags under his eyes and head resting on the desk.

“Could I talk to you?” Woojin asked the teacher. He informed her in the hallway of what was happening. She had a similar reaction to the admins. She was in shock, she couldn’t believe that Hyunjin was actually missing, but she agreed to let some students out of the room to talk to him. Seungmin was the first person she sent, but since Seungmin knew already what was going on, Woojin spent the time instead to check on him.

“Did you sleep okay?” he asked once the younger had closed the door. Seungmin walked out and leaned against the wall, sliding down it so that he was sitting on the tile.

“Did you?” Seungmin asked back bitterly before bowing his head. “I couldn’t sleep at all, so I snuck out and walked around the neighborhood.” Woojin was about to tell him that it was dangerous to do something like that when a potential kidnapper could be loose, but Seungmin was already talking again. “I don’t know why, I just… I thought maybe I’d just... bump into him. Isn’t that stupid? I know he’s not just sitting around on the street.”

Chan’s voice was soft when he spoke up. “You have an urge to do anything you can. In a situation where you can’t do anything, you still feel pressured to try.”

Seungmin nodded, confirming Chan’s words before sighing. “I tried to call him. His phone is either dead or off.”

Woojin glanced to Chan quickly. Chan nodded, catching his eyes. They could track Hyunjin’s phone when they got back to the station. If it was on, they’d know exactly where he was. If it was off, or dead, they’d know the last location it was at before it turned off. Either would be helpful in this scenario, and it was definitely a lead.

Chan knelt down so that he was at eye level with Seungmin, and Woojin found himself doing the same. “We’ll track his phone when we get back to the station, “Chan said, “For now though, I have a question that I need you to answer honestly.” Seungmin looked up tiredly, bloodshot eyes and pale face a mirror of Woojin’s own condition.

“Do you know of anyone who would want to hurt Hyunjin? Or anyone that is strangely interested in him? Maybe someone who wants to date him, maybe someone he argues with often. Anyone at all who is out of place.”

Seungmin shrugged halfheartedly, staring at his shoes. “To be honest, no. I mean, sure, half the school wants to date him, and the other half is jealous of that. But that’s just because he’s attractive and nice and stuff. I can’t think of anyone who he’s had an actual argument with since like middle school. As for anyone out of the ordinary… I can’t really think of anyone either. I’m his only close friend. He’s friends with a number of other people, but no one really stands out.”

Woojin nodded, thanking Seungmin. The teacher sent out a few other kids, kids Woojin had heard the names of but never met before. Minhyuk was Hyunjin’s tutor apparently and only had good things to say, but nothing productive towards their cause. Jooheon stuttered a little when he talked but said he barely knew Hyunjin. Kihyun admitted to having a crush on Hyunjin and nearly passed out when he found out that Woojin was Hyunjin’s older brother.

But no one had anything that could help them, and they were walking back down the busy hall empty handed right after the late bell rang for the next class. The students slowly filtered through the doors of the classrooms, disappearing from the hall until it was empty once more. Woojin suddenly stopped once they were alone.

“There has to be more than this,” he sighed, frustrated and tired. “Someone has to know something…”

Chan simply shook his head. “No, that’s not true,” he replied, “Maybe there’s really nothing here for us. If his disappearance is unrelated to school, then there isn’t anything that we can do here.” He smiled encouragingly, though the exhaustion was prevalent on his face as well. “Let’s move on.”

But right as they turned to return to their car, the sound of pounding, rushed footsteps echoed from down the hall. Someone was running towards them, an omega boy who skidded a little on his feet as he finally got close enough to speak. He was panting a little, as if he’d been running for a while.

“I’m so glad I found you,” the boy sighed, straightening up once he caught his breath.

“Who are you?” Chan asked kindly. The boy glanced between Woojin and Chan, as if determining whether or not to say what he came to say. Finally, his eyes steeled with determination.

“My name is Jeongin. I might have some information that can help your investigation on Hyunjin.”

Chapter Text

They brought Jeongin to the station. The boy had refused to say what he needed to in the hallway despite how empty it was, so they got permission from his teachers and a note for his parents for him to leave school for an hour.

He was quiet in the back of the patrol car, staring out the window uncertainly. Any attempt at small talk that Chan tried to make dissolved quickly, and soon they all just accepted the silence. They pulled up to the station fairly quickly, it not being too terribly far from the school, and escorted the younger boy up the stairs to their office. A few other officers were there this late into the morning, looking at them curiously as they did so. They’d put the report of Hyunjin’s disappearance up on the main messaging board, but it was rare that anyone checked that immediately upon coming to work. Woojin would gather the other officers to explain to them that they had a new case in due time, but for now they were focused on Jeongin.

Once the office door was closed, Jeongin sat down tiredly in Chan’s rolling chair. Chan began to brew some coffee, and Woojin sat across from the high schooler. “So, what did you want to tell us that you couldn’t tell us at school?” Woojin asked. Honestly he was exhausted, having not slept in over twenty four hours now. But this was far more important if it meant getting a lead on where Hyunjin might have gone.

“It’s… It’s not like I couldn’t say it at school,” Jeongin stuttered, seeming anxious to be alone with such official figures. “It’s more like I didn’t want it to be heard. Hyunjin seemed to want it to stay a secret with how they talked about it, and I feel like I shouldn’t be telling you either. I mean, who am I kidding, Seungmin probably already told you, he’s the one Hyunjin went to with all of this stuff. I’m probably just wasting your time and-”

Woojin held up a hand, stopping the kid from continuing to ramble and staring into his eyes. “Jeongin, it doesn’t matter what Seungmin told us. What matters is if you have a lead for us.”

Jeongin nodded quickly, bowing his head. “Okay. So… um… I sit behind Seungmin and Hyunjin in two of our classes. And sometimes I hear their conversations. One thing that I hear a lot is that Hyunjin is on this website.”

Website? Woojin nodded for Jeongin to continue.

“That’s all I knew about it for a while. But just last week, they were talking a little louder than usual about it. Seungmin had said something about Hyunjin almost messing up badly. I was confused by it, so I listened in. And then Hyunjin said something like, ‘Catfishing is easy if you don’t contradict yourself’,” Jeongin confessed.

Woojin’s brow furrowed. Catfishing…? It was something they saw a lot, but not something he ever saw Hyunjin doing. Hyunjin was an attractive alpha with a good, stable family. What did he have to hide from strangers? Besides, Hyunjin was always honest in Woojin’s eyes.

“I don’t know much more than that, but Seungmin probably does. I don’t know if he told you or not, but him and Hyunjin talk about something along those lines pretty often. I don’t want Seungmin to hate me so please don’t tell him that I told you. Honestly I would’ve reported it before but… But I really wanted Hyunjin to like me…” he trailed off for a second, his voice going hoarse when he spoke up again. “But now he’s missing. And I have a bad feeling, I’m scared about what’s happened to him.”

Woojin bowed his head and Chan gave Jeongin a pat on the back, thanking him in Woojin’s place for his information. So Hyunjin was catfishing people… Woojin decided to go onto Hyunjin’s computer when he got home to see what he could find about that.

At least he thought he’d decided that until he stood and blacked out for a second, stumbling a little. Jeongin watched him with wide eyes and Chan quickly assured the boy that things were alright. Chan drove Jeongin home, determining that Woojin was way too tired to do so himself. Woojin tried to get some work done in the meantime, but he kept nodding off, forcing himself awake until he felt Chan shaking his shoulder.

He must’ve passed out without realizing it.

“What time is it?” he groaned.

“Time for you to get some sleep,” Chan replied, patting Woojin’s back. “Come on. You’re sleeping at my place today. We’ll get right back on it tomorrow, but neither of us have slept since yesterday and we’re not going to find any leads while we’re exhausted.”

Woojin frowned. He’d only been to Chan’s place for work gatherings and longer nights of searching for information. But he didn’t argue, following his coworker to his car and getting in. He passed out in the backseat, too, only waking up when Chan shook him. The other alpha had made him a space on the couch with a blanket and a pillow, and Woojin sunk into the covers. He fell asleep the second his head hit the pillow, having a vivid nightmare of finding Hyunjin’s body by the lake.

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Hyunjin woke up with his pants still down, groaning once he realized that he was fully exposed and unable to change that. He felt weak, but still much better than before. Jisung had mentioned heats, but he was an alpha, he didn’t go through heats. He couldn’t make heads or tails of why he would’ve felt it so harshly if it was just Felix’s heat affecting him, but he also hadn’t been around a single heat in his life before, and Woojin hadn’t told him much about them.

He felt uncomfortable. His shirt was sticking to his stomach with something crusty that he didn’t want to think about and he was laying half off of the bed. He slid off of the blankets to stand on his one good leg, wobbling a bit as he tried to coordinate his balance, and found that the chain that he was hooked to had enough of a give that he could move a few feet around the room. He limped towards the dresser but found that even stretching out as far as he could wasn’t enough to reach the drawers. It wasn’t like it would matter if he didn’t have the hands to open them, he realized. As he moved his pants pooled around his ankles, and realizing that someone could walk in at any time, he hobbled back to the bed.

He felt so helpless and he hated it. He couldn’t even pull his own pants up and his arms felt numb from how long they’d been held behind his back like this. If he wasn’t far away from where the chain was attached to the bedpost he could at least bend them a little, stretch them some, but it wasn’t enough. He was also starving and still felt a little of that uncomfortable warmth inside his stomach. All of this discomfort encouraged him to just go back to sleep, but he decided that if he was going to find a way out of this place, it would be now when no one was watching him.

He kicked off his pants entirely, they were getting in the way of his movements and his shirt was long enough to cover him up anyway if someone were to walk in. He shifted uncomfortably, trying to twist his body so that he could see what sort of lock was attaching the handcuffs to the chain, but it hurt to do so and finally he stopped. Instead he took to analyzing where the chain connected to the bedpost.

It seemed to be bolted in, three thick nails dug solidly into the wood to hold the chain on. It wasn’t like he could try to pick at them right now, but just looking at them made apparent that he wasn’t going to be getting this chain undone anytime soon. He twisted his wrists to try and pull them through the handcuffs’ loops but the cuffs were linked so tightly that they dug a little into his skin; There was no getting out of them.

Frustrated, he fell back against the pillows, staring down at his wrapped foot. Felix had bandaged it up what felt like a few days ago, but he didn’t even recall time passing enough to say how many days had passed since he was kidnapped. He probably smelled like shit and really just wanted a shower and some fresh clothes. More than anything, he wanted to call Woojin, but there was no way his kidnappers would allow that to happen.

When the door opened, he hardly expected all three of his captors to walk in at once. Felix stood back by the door, shifting uncomfortably on his feet. Jisung approached the bed and Changbin went to the dresser.

Changbin glanced back at Hyunjin halfheartedly, muttering to the other two, “I still think this is a bad idea. Let him reek for all I care, but if he runs Minho will kill us.”

Hyunjin glanced between the two that were closest to him before locking eyes with Felix, furrowing his brow. Felix simply gave him a gentle smile.

“He won’t run,” Jisung said with an air of confidence that Hyunjin didn’t like. “Not with his foot all fucked up like that. Besides, if he tries to run we’ll just lock his pretty ass in the chair again until Minho comes for him.”

Hyunjin’s eyes went wide. He really, really didn’t want to go back to that chair. At least right now he had some freedom to move around on the bed and even a little off of it. The chair had him locked down entirely, he’d barely been able to shift besides turning his head from side to side.

Jisung laughed, “What, does bitch boy not like that idea? Good. If you try to run now, you’ll be in that chair for the next week until your ‘master’ comes to get you.” He fucking hated how Jisung was mocking him, almost seething on the inside, but he tried to display a calm exterior. He couldn’t fuck up here. If he wanted to escape, it would be much easier for him to do it with this chain being the only thing holding him back rather than a whole chair of buckles and latches that he couldn’t undo.

But the fact that they were threatening him not to run must mean that they were giving him more freedom, right? Were they going to let him move around?

Changbin took the back of Hyunjin’s arms while he was facing Jisung and began to fidget with the lock holding the chain to the handcuffs. Within a few seconds Hyunjin felt the chain go slack, trying not to move as Changbin unlooped the metal away from his wrists. He had to show that he could be still, that he could listen to them. If he made them think that he’d be obedient, maybe they’d give him enough slack that he could eventually run away.

“Stand up,” Changbin gruffly said, and Hyunjin swung his feet over the side of the bed, rising onto them with a little unbalance. The fact that his foot was still throbbing a little meant that he didn’t want to try to put much weight on it. He’d been able to limp earlier, but he didn’t want to see what would happen if he tried to actually walk. Jisung grabbed hold of his arms and began to step forward, Hyunjin stumbling after, wincing with each pained step.

Changbin and Felix followed them as they very slowly made their way out of the room and down the hall. Hyunjin tried to focus on keeping a steady pace, but Jisung was walking too quickly for him to keep up and he even fell to his knees at one point, only to be yanked back to his feet and pushed forward again. It took too long before they were turning into a new room. Hyunjin recognized it as a bathroom and sighed in relief.

Except, while Changbin turned to walk away, Jisung and Felix did not. Hyunjin glanced to them nervously as he was led to the tub and forced down to sit on the side of it. Felix closed the door behind them before turning and sighing. “How are we going to do this?” he asked Jisung, who shrugged and glanced to Hyunjin.

“Could be one of two ways. We uncuff him and let him clean himself, or if he tries to do anything stupid, we restrain him and do it for him. Let’s let him choose.”

Hyunjin bowed his head, wishing he wasn’t obligated to speak here. He just wanted to be alone above all else. The idea of showering in front of two people, especially these two people, was uncomfortable enough. But the idea of Felix scrubbing him down while Jisung held him still didn’t sound pleasant either.

“I can do it myself,” he muttered and Jisung nodded.

“There we go. He can do it himself.”

Felix sighed a soft ‘alright’ before approaching Hyunjin with a key he’d pulled from his pocket. “Please Hyunjin, just… just stay calm okay? If you don’t do anything wrong, then you won’t get hurt more. I don’t want to see you getting hurt any more than you already are, so please just…”

“I won’t do anything,” Hyunjin mumbled. It hurt a little seeing Felix plead like he cared more for Hyunjin’s safety than Hyunjin himself did. He wished it was just him and Felix in this room rather than Jisung, but it couldn’t be helped. So instead of struggling or yelling, he held perfectly still as Felix began to fidget with the handcuffs, finally pulling them away from his wrists. Bringing his hands in front of him he stretched outwards. It felt so good to finally be able to move again, and despite how sore his arms were from being in one position for days, he still wanted to move them.

“Feels good, doesn’t it?” Felix smiled. Hyunjin was about to answer when Jisung interrupted.

“Hey, get on with it. Minho isn’t paying for me to watch you piss and shower.”

Felix bowed his head, murmuring an apology to the alpha, and Hyunjin shuffled to pull his shirt off, trying to forget that anyone was watching him as he did so. The cold air of the bathroom hit his chest and stomach; He really was excited for this shower now. Turning the overhead water on, he sighed even as it ran cold, slowly warming up until it was turning his skin pink where it hit. He finally stood under the water entirely and almost groaned as it pounded into his sore muscles.

He simply stood there for a second, taking it all in. The bandages around his foot were getting soaked, but he had no doubt that Felix wouldn’t mind changing them out again if necessary. The cut on his cheek stung a little, but he figured it was healing given how no blood was running down the drain. He only realized how physically worn he was when the water was raining down on his body, pressing into all of the places that hurt the most from being restrained for so long. But he knew that Jisung would say something if he just stood here for too long, so he picked up the small bottle of shampoo in the corner and poured some of it into his hands, bringing it up to his greasy hair and beginning to scrub. It felt so good to just be getting clean again. He closed his eyes and washed himself slowly, allowing the water to soak through his bones, warming him and washing away the weakness of his muscles.

When he finally turned the water off, he felt entirely rejuvenated, only to realize that he was probably going to go straight back to having his wrists cuffed behind his back. He frowned at the thought of this, staring down at his hands for a second before suddenly there was something thrown into them. He glanced up from the bundle of clothes now in his hands and saw Jisung staring at him boredly, clicking his tongue. “Hurry up, pretty boy, I’m getting bored,” the other simply said, and Hyunjin sighed as he separated the grey t-shirt from the black sweatpants and dressed himself.

“Sit down on the side of the tub.” The order came from Felix this time, and Hyunjin was so surprised by it that he listened, sitting down and watching as Felix came and knelt in front of him. He began to unwrap the wet bandages around Hyunjin’s foot, looping them around over and over until they were falling away. Hyunjin almost gasped. The entire top of his foot was burst in shades of black and purple. No wonder it still hurt so fucking bad to step on. Seeing this type of injury on television was one thing, but seeing it on himself was… He’d never been this hurt before, and now was the worst time for such an injury. He’d had hope before now that he could heal and then run, that his injury was something that could be recovered over the week before Minho came back. He didn’t have that hope anymore, and a weight fell into his chest, a thickness in his throat as Felix rewrapped his foot up to his ankle.

“Use the bathroom and then I’m taking you back,” Jisung said dully. Hyunjin bowed his head, but did as told. He was hoping to do more, to brush his teeth, to wash his face. He wanted to scrub his body until it was raw. But he wouldn’t have the chance for a long time and he knew it, so after he finished washing his hands, he allowed them to be cuffed again behind his back as before.

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“How is he?”

“He’s taking a shower without trying to run, so that’s something.”

Changbin listened to the water running, leaning against the wall of the hallway to make sure that someone was waiting just in case Hyunjin burst through the door. His phone was held between his shoulder and his ear as he fidgeted with his knife, flipping it open and closed, over and over.

“Good,” Minho said, “That’s progress.”

“I guess,” Changbin replied with a sigh. It all felt a little more dangerous than he was comfortable with. They were holding Hyunjin for a guy who had the full potential to hurt them badly if they didn’t do as he asked. But the fact that they were holding Hyunjin for this long was dangerous as well, because Hyunjin literally had a police officer brother who was absolutely looking for him by now. Sure, they’d taken all the necessary steps that they always took to make sure they didn’t get caught, but usually they’d have their captive gone by now, whether to death or some buyer. “Can you please reconsider the pick up date?”

Minho’s sigh was breathy and tired. “I could, potentially, take him sooner. But I expect some things in return to make up for the inconvenience and the money that I’m paying that would otherwise go to waste.” Changbin waited for him to continue, closing his knife and pocketing it once he heard the water turn off from the other side of the door.

“First, I want him obedient. Following any order I give. I’ll allow a few mistakes here and there, but he needs to fear disobeying. Second, I want him to be used to intimacy. I’ll probably end up selling him on the market when I’m done showing off what I’ve done to him, so he needs to be trained in that aspect. Third, I want his brother out of the picture. I can take care of that myself, but when I finish the job, I want you to tell Hyunjin exactly what I did. Do all of this, and I’ll come get him within five days. If he’s not fully trained by then though, don’t expect me to pick him up until he is.”

“You think all of that can done in five days? I don’t… Other than torture, I don’t see how you can just break someone that easily in that span of time. And you said you didn’t want him to be too fucked up last time we talked, so…” Changbin was lost. Minho seemed crazy with the demands that he was making. If not for the fact that the police were looking for Hyunjin right now, Changbin would’ve just changed his mind and agreed to hold him for longer.

“Hearing news of his brother’s death will take enough of an emotional toll. I want him to know fully that he has nothing to go back to if he were to leave. I want him to be a doll, drug him if you have to, but he needs to be broken. The people who have paid me to pay you wanted him dead, Changbin. He needs to be in a condition more amusing than death to them, more worth their pay.”

Changbin could hear Jisung on the other side of the door. He sighed and replied, “I understand. I have to hang up now. We’ll do as you ask,” before clicking the red button and slipping his phone back into his pocket. He rubbed his eyes, locking them with Jisung’s when the door opened and Hyunjin was led out. “We need to talk after you put him back,” Changbin said sternly, and Jisung nodded. Hyunjin watched the interaction between them anxiously, and Felix reached out to hold one of Hyunjin’s hands as they walked back to the bedroom.

Things would have to get harsher. Changbin tried to numb himself to it, but he couldn’t deny the fact that he was human enough to regret already what they were going to have to do to Hyunjin. Felix might hate him for it, but what could they do?

They needed the money. They needed it enough that they’d fallen to crime to get it. Life was cruel enough to put them all into a situation like this, but that was how the cards fell for people like them who had an unlucky draw from the start.

Chapter Text

“What the fuck does he mean by that…?” Jisung asked, rubbing his eyes, elbows propped on the kitchen table. Changbin pulled out the chair and sat across from him, sliding him a beer. Jisung shook his head, standing up and heading to the fridge for something stronger. This entire hit had been exhausting so far, and now it was about to become even more so.

“He’s going to be back in five days, Ji. He said we’re keeping Hyunjin for longer if he isn’t satisfied with his progress,” Changbin said tiredly. Five days to break someone. It would’ve sounded easy enough if they’d been asked to do it before knowing the situation. Changbin shook his head slowly, popping open the beer Jisung had denied with his knife and bringing it to his lips. “We’re going to have to get forceful.”

“No shit,” Jisung murmured, but Changbin could read this discomfort on his friend’s face as he poured himself a drinking glass of straight vodka and brought it back to the table. Jisung handled hits well when they were short and sweet. He’d been able to make grown men bawl and beg before, and Changbin was curious as to why something like this was bothering him so much now.

“Why does it matter to you?” he asked carefully, Jisung taking a few swallows already and inhaling deeply as the burn from the alcohol slid down his throat. Jisung simply bowed his head, staring down at his glass.

“Cause this kid did nothing wrong. What would Yongguk think if he saw us doing this? Beating around a crime lord is nothing to me, Mr. Kim killed at least five people before we captured him. But Hyunjin is literally a high schooler, all he did was toy with the shoestrings of the wrong boots and now we’re going to condemn him to something like this? I didn’t care before when we were just holding him, but we are literally the people inflicting the punishment now.”

“We’re not the ones condemning him,” Changbin reminded him. “We’re just the passageway. Minho is the one calling the shots.”

Jisung scoffed. “Sure, Minho who’s paying us to what? Train him, fuck him, and tell him his brother’s dead. That’s the gist of the phone call you got, right?”

Changbin fell quiet and so did Jisung, the two sipping at their drinks as the air conditioning rumbled through the silence. Jisung was the first to actually break the quiet, sighing as he took another hearty sip. “I’ll do it. Don’t think that I won’t. We need the money more than I need to keep my humanity, but fuck, Bin, what have we turned into?” Changbin couldn’t answer. He honestly agreed, but saying it would make Jisung ask him why they didn’t just turn the mission down when the answer was obvious. Minho was dedicated now, and Minho was someone who had found out his name in less than a day and held a gun to Hyunjin’s head with no change of expression. Minho wasn’t someone he wanted to fuck with. Hyunjin could be their sacrifice, and he would feel bad, but at least they’d get away safely themselves.

Jisung suddenly pounded the rest of his drink, swallowing it in gulps, and Changbin watched him wide eyed as he slammed the empty glass down onto the table. He was panting a little, the warmth from the vodka surely blossoming throughout his chest after a second passed.

“I’m gonna do it,” Jisung mumbled. Changbin furrowed his brow as the younger continued, “I’m gonna go get it over with. Five days right? Just five days and this is all over.”

The elder nodded slowly and Jisung pushed out his chair, the wooden legs screeching against the tile. He was already loose from the drink, walking with tired steps towards the stairs. Changbin watched him with equally as tired eyes, just watched as Jisung clambered up the steps towards the room they were keeping Hyunjin in. He bowed his head. He didn’t want to know what Jisung was about to do. It was better if he didn’t think about it, even though it was a necessary evil, even though they’d signed up for this the moment they’d agreed to kidnap someone who wasn’t guilty of a reasonable crime.

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Jisung felt warm. It was the alcohol entirely this time, Felix’s heat long having been worked away by Changbin. He felt warm and woozy and determined and a little pissed because this was stupid, all of this was stupid, and Minho was the worst of all. Five days to break Hyunjin. He didn’t feel like it was right, but unlike Changbin right now, he was willing to do what he had to do.

He turned the doorknob and creaked the door open. Hyunjin was asleep in the dark, Felix probably having turned the light out after feeding him. He looked so blissful in sleep, a calm on his face that Jisung hadn’t seen before now. Fuck, he felt guilty. No, he forced that guilt away and made his way to the bed.

Hyunjin didn’t wake up as Jisung rolled him to his back. Hyunjin didn’t wake up as Jisung straddled him. It wasn’t until Jisung was giving soft smacks to the side of his face that Hyunjin’s eyes squeezed shut and then opened slowly…

...only to widen and dilate. He struggled to sit up but his hands were still cuffed behind his back, he couldn’t gain leverage, and Jisung simply stared down at him until his struggle faded a little. “What are you doing?!” Hyunjin asked, his voice a fluid mix between surprise, fear, and anger. The taste of vodka loosened Jisung’s tongue.

“I’m going to fuck you,” he said blankly. “And you’re going to lay here, still, and take it.”

Hyunjin stared at him for a single second before shaking his head quickly. “You… what the fuck are you talking about? You can’t do that to another alpha, you can’t physically do that-” his voice was cut off by Jisung slamming his lips down into Hyunjin’s, resting his elbows on the sheets beside the boy’s head. Hyunjin tried to twist his head away but Jisung quickly grabbed his chin, holding it still. He moved his lips, pressed his tongue forward, anything to try and get Hyunjin to respond. The captive held his lips tightly together, squeezing his eyes shut, and Jisung wouldn’t have it.

He smacked him, hard across the face. It wasn’t the first time and surely wouldn’t be the last. “No,” he said in a stern, demanding voice. “If I kiss you, you kiss me back.” It was what Minho would want him to do, and that meant that was what Jisung had to train him to do. If they wanted the money bad enough, which they did, and if they wanted Hyunjin off their hands soon enough, which they did, he had to do this right.

He leaned back down and pressed his lips back to Hyunjin’s, feeling the other breathing rapidly through his nose against his face. He began to slowly guide Hyunjin to follow his motions, and Hyunjin tried for just a second to listen before his eyes narrowed and he shot his head aside again. Jisung growled as Hyunjin muttered, “You’re drunk. You’re doing this because you’re drunk. Get the fuck off of me.”

Jisung grabbed his chin again, yanking his face still to look straight up into his eyes. He wasn’t fucking around anymore, they didn’t have the time for that. “I’m doing this because this is what Minho wants from you. Obedience and a good fuck. That is all that you’re worth anymore, so throw away that fucking pride and listen to what I tell you to do.” Hyunjin was wide-eyed, staring up at Jisung as the anger began to dip further into fear, into shock, into worry.

Jisung didn’t want to see Hyunjin’s scared face, he didn’t want to remind himself that he was the cause of it, so he forced himself down to kiss Hyunjin again. Hyunjin was trembling under him but slowly kissed back, their lips moving in sync. It was almost nice, Jisung thought, how plush Hyunjin’s lips were. He was a terrible kisser, probably having very little experience, but Jisung was probably a pretty terrible kisser too right now after drinking a full glass of vodka. Jisung forced his tongue past Hyunjin’s lips and the other alpha whined. A hand resting against his throat had him holding still though, holding still enough as Jisung fought to find pleasure in this fucking terrible act.

After toying with the warmth of Hyunjin’s mouth for a while, he pulled back and wiped his lips. Hyunjin had a little drool running down his chin and Jisung left it, ignoring how the other’s eyes pleaded to make contact with his. He slid off of the bed and yanked Hyunjin’s pants down in one motion, pulling them off of his legs entirely. Hyunjin struggled a little to move away from him but Jisung held his thighs still, spreading his legs and looking at what he had to deal with before sighing. This would be more difficult than he’d expected. It wasn’t like alphas created slick to make the insertion easier like omegas did. Jisung stared down at his fingers. They’d hurt him too badly going in, and as much as he knew Minho wouldn’t care, he wanted to at least make this a little less painful for Hyunjin than it could be. So he brought his fingers up to Hyunjin’s soft lips.

“Suck,” he demanded, and Hyunjin shook his head quickly.

“Please don’t do this, you don’t have to do this,” Hyunjin whispered hoarsely. Jisung smacked him across the face again. Hyunjin didn’t have to be told twice before taking Jisung’s fingers into his mouth, wetting them with saliva. It felt weird. It would’ve felt good to Jisung if the weight of what he was doing wasn’t tearing up his chest, but he couldn’t get around that weight to find pleasure in this. Once he felt that his fingers were wet enough, he slipped them from Hyunjin’s lips and brought them down to his ass.

“Jisung,” Hyunjin whimpered, trying to close his legs as Jisung held them open.

“Don’t say my name,” Jisung hurriedly retorted. He didn’t want to hear Hyunjin pleading. He wished he had just gagged the other alpha so he wouldn’t have to deal with the guilt as much as this. Before the spit on his fingers dried, he pressed one into Hyunjin’s hole, and the alpha below him tensed at the intrusion. Slowly his finger sunk in to the second knuckle. He moved it in and out slowly, getting Hyunjin used to the feeling.

“Feels weird,” Hyunjin whimpered. Jisung smacked his thigh hard to shut him up. He did this for a while before feeling like Hyunjin had loosened enough that he could add a second finger, spitting on it first to make sure that it would be wet enough to go in smoothly. But it didn’t go in smoothly, barely fitting beside the first, and Hyunjin groaned, twisting his body a little to try and move away. “Hurts,” he whispered, but Jisung ignored it, his chest throbbing now with contempt for himself that he was trying to mask behind the haze of drunkness that still wasn’t enough to make this feel okay.

He pressed those two fingers further in until they were both fully gone, and then he began to stretch them out slowly. Hyunjin had fallen quiet, and Jisung didn’t know why but appreciated it. At least he appreciated it until he felt Hyunjin tremble. He shouldn’t have looked up, he should’ve just ignored it and kept going. But he did look. And the weight in his chest dropped like a boulder.

Hyunjin was crying. His eyes were wet and squeezed shut, his cheeks were splotchy, lips puffy still from Jisung violating them and a shimmer on his chin from the saliva that Jisung hadn’t wiped away. The captor froze at the sight, feeling a tremor run through his body, feeling his eyes getting damp.

“Don’t cry,” Jisung said hoarsely to Hyunjin, trying to make it a demand but hardly being able to muster the voice for it anymore. The weight of his actions were pressing down on him hard, he couldn’t bear it much longer. Hyunjin only seemed to cry harder when Jisung said this, shaking his head back and forth, heavy, trembling breaths escaping his parted lips. And Jisung couldn’t fucking do it anymore.

He pulled his fingers out of Hyunjin and wiped them on his pants, quickly grabbing the sweatpants he’d thrown haphazardly onto the floor and slipping them over Hyunjin’s feet again. Hyunjin blinked up at him with teary eyes, confused and just barely hopeful, and Jisung couldn’t handle it. He pulled Hyunjin’s pants up for him with trembling hands, taking a few stumbling steps back, almost falling as he couldn’t take his eyes away from Hyunjin’s scared face. Hyunjin was afraid of him. He’d just… he had just… Fuck, he had to do it, but he couldn’t bring himself to…

“I’m sorry,” Hyunjin slowly said, the words weak on his lips, trembling and fearful. “I’m sorry for not listening, I’m sorry,” he pleaded. Jisung couldn’t take it.

He turned, ran, and slammed the door behind him, taking off down the stairs until he was rushing through the front door and slamming that behind him too. The cold of night hit him like a splash of water and he gasped it in, staring down at his trembling hands. He couldn’t do it.

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The phone rang three times and Woojin almost hoped that the other side of the line would go to voicemail. He sat on Chan’s couch as the morning light filtered in, hugging himself with one hand and squeezing the cellphone to his ear with the other. On the third ring, his mother’s voice was professional and calm.

“Hello?”

“Mom,” he said. It was all he could say.

“Oh, Woojin! I didn’t expect you to call! Is it okay if I call you back though, honey? Your father has a meeting soon and I’m coming with him to-”

“Mom,” Woojin whispered. “It’s important.”

The line went quiet for a moment, his mother seeming to not know how to respond. “How important?” she finally, slowly asked.

He didn’t want to say it. He didn’t want to hear them panic, he didn’t want them to know. They could probably go without knowing but he’d called impulsively and now it was too late to back out.

“Hyunjin is missing.”

There was a pause before her halfhearted voice came back. “Oh, honey, is that really it? He’s probably out with one of his friends. It’s not like you’re home often for him to get to tell you-”

“He’s been gone for four days. None of his friends know where he went. He’s missed school. He hasn’t been home.” His voice grew weaker and weaker as he said these statements, as each one hit him solidly in the chest. “Me and Chan are searching for him now, we’re trying to get the people from the main Missing Person’s Unit to help.”

This time, the silence lasted for a long ten seconds. Woojin counted each one that passed before his mother’s quiet voice hoarsely replied, “Are you sure..? That he’s…?”

“Mom,” Woojin pleaded. “Mom I’m not bullshitting this. He’s gone.” He choked on his own voice for a moment, swallowing to try and wet his throat again but feeling no relief come.

He heard a sniffle from the other line. Then a sob. “No,” she murmured. “Hyunjin is strong, he’s a strong alpha, he’s,”

“He’s gone!” Woojin finally broke out. “It doesn’t matter how strong of an alpha he is or how he should be able to protect himself or whatever. He’s missing!” He didn’t know what he had been trying to accomplish by calling her. Maybe he was searching for comfort that he knew consciously that he wouldn’t receive this way. Maybe he was waiting for his parents to somehow know Hyunjin’s whereabouts. He could hear his mother crying on the line, crying to someone, probably his father, before the phone moved to a different holder and the man’s gruff voice cast over the line.

“He’s missing?” his father asked, stoic as if talking about work rather than his son’s disappearance. Woojin nodded before realizing that they couldn’t see him, murmuring a quiet ‘yes’.

“I trust you to find him. You’re strong, Woojin. When we left, we entrusted you to take care of him until he graduates. How did you not even notice he was gone until now?”

He asked that of himself every other moment, and the dam broke, tears streaking one by one down his cheeks. “I don’t know,” he mumbled, “I don’t know, dad, I don’t know. I’ll find him, I have to, but…”

“You have to find him, Woojin. He’s your little brother. I’m passing the phone back to your mother, I have to go to this meeting now.”

Woojin sat in silence, listening to his mother sob incoherently over the phone for two minutes before finally giving in and hanging up. He bowed his head, phone slipping from his hands and dropping to the floor. He barely even noticed it fall, didn’t notice anything, didn’t notice that he was crying until Chan was sitting next to him and rubbing his back until he was too exhausted for anymore tears to fall.

Chapter Text

“This is not okay, Changbin,” Felix whispered. It was the fifth time he’d said it in less than an hour. After coming downstairs to find Changbin drinking alone, Felix had asked what the cause was. Changbin wasn’t usually a drinker, not liking when his senses were dulled. When Changbin had bluntly explained what Jisung was doing upstairs, Felix had almost rushed up to put a stop to it.

But Changbin demanded that he stay downstairs, and Felix submitted.

The room was cold as night fell further. The heater never worked well in this old building, but Felix figured he would’ve felt numb anyway at this point. The coffee mug held between his fingers was losing its warmth. He didn’t have the appetite to even take the first sip.

“I know it’s not okay,” Changbin repeated for the fifth time, weary eyes locking with Felix’s. “I know, Lix. But it’s what we have to do.”

“You don’t have to,” Felix replied quietly. “You know you don’t. Your sole job is holding him until Minho takes him. The only thing you gain out of this is more money, and you could just do another job…”

“You don’t get it,” Changbin sighed. “This is for Hyunjin’s sake, too. I know it doesn’t seem like it now. Minho is… Minho’s entire plan is to ruin him. If we get him prepared for what will happen to him after Minho takes him, then he’ll be more likely to be able to handle it. You know that Jisung doesn’t want to be doing this, but it’s for everyone’s sake that it happens. Minho is happy if Hyunjin is trained, Hyunjin will likely be more comfortable with it, and-”

“I’m sorry for interrupting, but that isn’t true. From… from the perspective of someone who’s experienced all of that. The reason why I trusted you when you took me back is because you never tried to touch me before. You never hurt me unless you had to back then, that’s why I feel so safe here now.” Felix’s voice felt weak, and he tried to force strength into it to get his point across. “Minho is trying to convince you and Jisung to do shitty things to make it easier for himself, so that it’s already done for him. But you don’t have to do it. He’ll pay you less, sure, you might have to hold Hyunjin for longer, maybe, but in the end, you won’t be the bad guys here.”

Changbin bowed his head. He was thinking. Felix could only hope that he was convincing him to listen to reason. This was a messy situation entirely, but the outcome could be better if they all just kept their heads on straight. “Go up there and tell Jisung to stop,” Felix pleaded. “Apologize to Hyunjin. Explain your thought process. He isn’t some animal you’re holding for Minho, he’s a human being.”

Changbin didn’t respond, lost in his thoughts. He opened his mouth to speak, but no words came in time before a slamming noise echoed from upstairs. Both of their heads shot up as pounding footsteps raced down the hall. Felix jumped to his feet, but Jisung was already halfway down the stairs. He didn’t even notice them as he rushed past the kitchen into the living room, throwing the front door open and slamming it behind him.

Felix’s heart pounded in his chest, and he tried to calm himself down, turning slowly to Changbin with a furrowed brow. Changbin was watching the door for a second before standing as well, frowning at Felix. “I’ll talk to him. Go be with Hyunjin.”

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The wind whipped at Jisung’s hair. The air was damp and smelled of rain, but he couldn’t bring himself to go back inside. Falling into the rocking chair on the porch, he stared down at the tops of his hands.

Half of him was furious with himself for leaving. Did he not care enough about the money to continue? Was he really going to pussy out like that? The other half was furious that he’d done what he’d done in the first place. Hyunjin’s scared eyes, his pleads, all of it had been so wrong, and all of it had been Jisung’s fault. Why did he have to do something like this? What kind of shitty situation were they in that he’d be forced to…

“Jisung.”

He hadn’t heard the front door open and close, nor had he heard Changbin’s footsteps, jumping a little at the sound of his name before glancing up warily at his friend. “I don’t want to talk,” Jisung mumbled. He probably looked fucking pathetic here, about to cry over something so stupid. Changbin was probably just going to tell him to try again, tell him what he knew. They had to do this. Minho was paying them to do this and they needed money. What was Hyunjin anyway? He was just another captive, so why was it so hard? Why couldn’t Jisung just get it over with?

Changbin sat down in the chair next to him. Jisung wished he was alone, parting his lips to exclaim this before Changbin interrupted.

“I’m sorry that I didn’t stop you.”

It wasn’t at all what he’d expected to hear. Jisung glanced up to the other alpha, breathing in a deep breath and trying to calm down. Changbin had his hands folded in his lap, his head bowed, slowly continuing, “I was just… thinking too much like usual. With a job like this, you kind of turn your sympathy switch off, right? Otherwise you’d go insane. We kidnap people, we torture them, we watch them be taken to places where we know that they’ll die. If we had empathy for those people, we wouldn’t be able to do it.”

Jisung nodded. It was entirely true. His first hit had been emotionally taxing to the point that he’d gotten drunk every night for a month after. But as they did more and more, they slowly grew numb to the reality of what they were doing.

“And usually I justify it to myself by saying ‘they had it coming.’ I did that in this situation too,” Changbin said quietly. “I told myself that Hyunjin had it coming, messing with the wrong people. I told myself that life just isn’t fair and this is another one of those sad but realistic scenarios where someone has an unhappy ending.”

Jisung hummed. As much as he’d wanted to be left alone before, he was starting to calm down a little just listening to Changbin’s voice. The wind was whistling against the sides of the house now, it would be raining soon. He didn’t want to go back into the same building as Hyunjin, didn’t want to face the repercussions of his actions, so he ignored it.

“We’re playing into Minho’s hands,” Changbin sighed after a pause. “We don’t have to pretend to be monsters to train Hyunjin in the way that Minho wants him to be trained. Warning him of what’s to come is probably better than forcing it on him early. I only realized this just recently. We get so lost in our job that we forget that our targets are people. Hyunjin is human, it’s easy to want to forget that when we know exactly what’s going to happen to him when we give him up.”

Jisung bowed his head. The first drop of rain hit him on the cheek and the following droplets were blown towards them in the rain. Neither Changbin nor Jisung made to go inside.

“We have four days now. Let’s try to be better for those four days. If Minho makes us keep Hyunjin longer, that’s all the better for Hyunjin’s sake. We don’t have to be the bad guys this time, Jisung. I’m sorry that I didn’t realize that earlier.”

“It’s okay,” Jisung whispered. He felt relieved somehow. He’d never bothered with feeling unsure or guilty before when it came to hits. What he did to bad people was what he considered justice. But Hyunjin wasn’t a bad person and the guilt was eating him alive. He’d been afraid that Changbin would tell him to go upstairs and continue what he’d started. That it was necessary, that they had to do it. This was a better alternative by far.

“Let’s go inside,” Changbin said, stretching as he stood. The rain was beginning to soak their hair and clothes, small occasional droplets building up slowly over time. Jisung stood; His legs felt like jelly but he forced steps into them. He didn’t want to go inside. He never wanted to see Hyunjin again after what he’d done to him. Changbin held the door open for him and he walked in, made his way to the kitchen, and fell into one of the chairs.

“Is… Is Hyunjin still alone?” he asked. He didn’t know why he cared. He never cared about their hits, just wanting them done and over with so that they could get the money and move on. He was Han Jisung, the person known for enjoying the struggle of his victims, and here he was worrying over one of them.

“He’s with Lix,” Changbin said, grabbing a mug from the cabinet and pouring a cup of coffee for Jisung. The mug Felix had left was still on the table, the coffee inside long having cooled down, and Changbin gave Jisung the fresh cup in favor of drinking from the one Felix left behind.

“Okay,” Jisung said quietly, forcing himself to take a sip. The bitterness and heat swirled on his tongue, and he relished in how it forced his attention away from the guilt pooling in his chest. “Are we telling Minho that we’re not going to train Hyunjin or is he just gonna find out when he gets here?”

It was a dangerous game that they’d decided on playing, but Jisung was numb by this point. Minho would not be happy with them if he came to pick up Hyunjin only to have the younger struggling and yelling.

“Neither,” Changbin said quietly, staring down at the drink in his hands. “We’re going to talk to Hyunjin. Tell him the benefits of being obedient and the downsides of struggling. And it’ll be his choice from there. In the end, all that affects us is that we’ll get less money out of this. His obedience is his decision, and ultimately his disobedience will have consequences.”

Jisung could get around that. Leaving it up to Hyunjin meant not deciding someone’s fate for them himself. And for once he didn’t want to be the person in control here.

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Felix sat on the side of the bed. It had been silent between them for fifteen minutes. Hyunjin hadn’t stopped trembling in that amount of time, even after Felix had wrapped one of the blankets around his shoulders.

Felix had come in to see Hyunjin curled in on himself, face buried into a pillow. When Felix had asked if he was okay, he’d shaken his head ‘no’. That was the most of their interaction, and now Felix stared at Hyunjin as Hyunjin stared at the floor. He’d convinced the alpha to sit up and sit beside him. Felix had asked if Hyunjin minded if he touch him, intending to scratch his back, rub his arms, something to calm him down. But Hyunjin had nodded that he did mind, and Felix didn’t touch him.

“I’m sorry,” Felix said. It was the only thing he could come up with after fifteen minutes of thinking of what to say. Hyunjin didn’t respond, tiredly staring down at his feet. “Do you want to talk about it…?” Felix asked softly. He fully expected a no. Hyunjin was an alpha, and alphas were almost always certain about their pride. But something softened in Hyunjin’s eyes when he asked, and slowly he began to speak with a trembling voice.

“My mom… When I was little, my mom was assaulted.” It wasn’t what Felix had expected to hear, but he stayed quiet and listened as Hyunjin continued. “I was five, I think. She’d taken us out shopping. She said she had to use the restroom and asked Woojin to watch me for a little bit. It was taking too long, and when we got closer to the bathroom, we heard her crying. Woojin told me to stay back but I followed him anyway.”

Hyunjin sighed softly. His voice was so soft that Felix struggled a little to make out what he was saying. “When I saw her like that, laying on the ground, I thought she’d fallen or something. She looked normal, but she was crying. I didn’t know what had happened until Woojin told me there was an alpha there before I came in, sitting on top of her…”

“It’s why Woojin’s a police officer. It’s why I wanted to be one. She wasn’t strong enough to protect herself, most omegas aren’t.” Felix bowed his head. Hyunjin went quiet for a minute, and Felix wasn’t sure if he was waiting for a response. But finally, he began to speak again. “I’d cried back then over it and she told me that she felt safe because she had strong alphas in her family that could protect her. And I was so determined to be strong after that. But now…”

He choked on his voice, shaking his head. “But now… I’m here. I couldn’t even protect myself, I can’t do anything in this situation.” He began to tremble again, and Felix wished he could at least hold his hand. “What would they think if they saw me like this…? My dad, her, Woojin,” he sniffed. “I almost don’t want to be found like this.”

“Hyunjin, it’s okay to be vulnerable,” Felix said softly. “I’m so sorry about what happened to your mom. And I’m so sorry about what’s happening to you. This is such a terrible situation and if I could do anything to help you other than just being here for you I would. It’s okay to feel scared, it’s okay to cry if you need to.”

Hyunjin glanced over and they locked eyes, Hyunjin’s miserable gaze with Felix’s determined one. Felix reached out slowly and Hyunjin’s eyes flicked down to stare at his outstretched hand for a moment before slowly nodding. Felix rested his fingers over Hyunjin’s bound hands, holding them softly. Hyunjin’s tense body visibly relaxed a little. “It’ll be okay,” he whispered, and Hyunjin slowly shook his head ‘no’. Felix only squeezed his hand tighter. “It will be,” he assured. It felt like a lie. Would things really be okay for Hyunjin? Honestly… they probably wouldn’t be. But he wanted to comfort him somehow.

There was a knock at the door, and Hyunjin’s head shot up fearfully, his body tensing again. Changbin glanced in through the doorway. Felix was thankful that Jisung wasn’t there.

“Hyunjin, let’s talk,” Changbin said, using a softer tone than Felix had heard him use with the other alpha before. Hyunjin bit his lip, his breathing was speeding up, he was anxious. Felix held his hand tighter.

“It’ll be okay,” he whispered again reassuringly. Changbin walked in and closed the door behind him.

Chapter Text

Hyunjin held Felix’s hand tightly, cherishing the warmth of it, cherishing how Felix didn’t seem to mind how hard he was squeezing it when Changbin entered further into the room. The alpha made his way to the dresser, leaning against it with a sigh. He looked to Felix, then to Hyunjin. Hyunjin looked away immediately. Changbin’s gruff voice finally broke the silence.

“Hyunjin, I want to apologize.”

What…? It was the last thing that Hyunjin ever expected to hear, and he slowly glanced up to meet Changbin’s dark, tired eyes. Changbin rubbed the back of his neck roughly, seeming unsure about how to phrase what he was going to say next. He found the words within a few seconds. “We do bad things to bad people. It’s become a habit, and we’ve grown numb to it.” Hyunjin didn’t like where this seemed to be going, but given that Changbin had actually apologized a few seconds ago, he held on listening.

Changbin shoved his hands into his front pockets, glancing up at the rough, stained ceiling. “But you’re not a bad person. Stupid, yeah. You shouldn’t have done something so dangerous as trying to play vigilante.” He shook his head. “But you’re not bad. And we shouldn’t treat you the same as our usual hits. So this is my apology.”

Hyunjin didn’t know how to respond, or if he should respond at all. Changbin was staring at him with eyes that seemed to have no end to their depth, and even with Felix squeezing his hand, he felt overwhelmed. Changbin seemed to deem that Hyunjin wouldn’t reply after a few seconds, sighing heftily and bowing his head. “Look, Hyunjin. What J-one did wasn’t for himself. I know that sounds like bullshit, but if you knew J-one as well as me or Felix do, you would know that it’s true. Minho told us to get you… well, to get you ready, in shorter words, and J-one was following through with that for Minho’s satisfaction and for your sake.”

“What the fuck do you mean, ‘for my sake’?” Hyunjin growled, regretting his words immediately but not allowing that regret to show on his face. What Jisung had done to him was unforgivable, how could Changbin possibly think that his partner had assaulted Hyunjin for Hyunjin’s sake? Felix loosened his grip, Hyunjin could see him frowning from the corner of his eye, but he didn’t care. He was tired, he was sore, he felt used, he felt suffocated by this nightmare.

He’d expected Changbin to get irritated. He hadn’t expected the same void expression that he’d been staring at for nearly ten minutes now to remain. Changbin’s voice softened considerably as he answered simply, “Don’t you remember what Minho said to you?”

Hyunjin bowed his head. Of course he remembered. He wished he could forget, but the words had plagued his thoughts since he’d heard them. ‘You’ll submit to me, and everyone you’ve reported will watch you do it.’ Changbin gave him a few seconds to recall before continuing.

“Minho’s coming back, Hyunjin. He wants you to be hopeless by then. As much as he played it off, you have to remember that Minho’s likely just as mad at you as the people who wanted to kill you. He wants us to break you, and the fact that we’re not doing it is going to put us in a bad position as well. Technically, me apologizing here means that we’re all screwed.”

“Then why aren’t you just going to listen to him? Why do you care about how I feel about it?” Hyunjin asked under his breath. The people that tore him from his life were suddenly now worried about his safety? It made no sense that his actual kidnappers were now saying that they didn’t want to do bad things to him.

Changbin tried to meet his eyes, but Hyunjin wouldn’t look up. Sighing, the elder replied in a low tone, “Because we have a conscience, Hyunjin. You’re lucky that we do, since most people we work with have long lost theirs. We do this because we have to, not because we enjoy it.”

“Jisung seems to enjoy it,” Hyunjin mumbled. Changbin’s eyes widened before narrowing tightly, shooting to Felix who blinked in confusion under such a harsh gaze, then back to Hyunjin.

“How did you learn his name?” Changbin demanded, the softness far from his voice at this point. Hyunjin glared up at Changbin, almost daring him to act out against the words he was saying just minutes ago. He was tired and bitter and didn’t believe a single word of the other alpha’s apology. They were just covering their own tails.

“He told me. What, am I not allowed to know? Are you changing your mind about not wanting to hurt me because of it?” he spat, not realizing that he was trembling again until Felix was squeezing his hands, trying to hold them still. Changbin looked tense before his chest gave one steady rise and fall and he seemed to calm himself down a little.

“Hyunjin,” he started, but Hyunjin didn’t want to hear it anymore.

“You guys literally dragged me into a van, held me at knifepoint, broke my foot, dumped water on my head, and tried to rape me and now you’re throwing this sorry bullshit out like it’ll fix anything! If you were really sorry you’d let me go!” He didn’t realize that he was yelling until the last words that came out had Felix flinching away from him, the omega bowing his head submissively at his harsh tone. He was sorry to Felix, he was, but that didn’t matter right now against all of this anger and frustration he felt.

Changbin bit his lip before saying in a drastically softer voice, “Felix, go to the kitchen.”

Felix’s head shot up, eyes dilated, but even still he shook his head no. “I’m okay, I’m just-”

“Felix.”

And slowly the omega rose from the bed, glancing pver to Hyunjin one last time before walking past Changbin to leave the room. Hyunjin’s heart began to race, he didn’t realize how much Felix’s presence had been calming him down until he was gone.

Changbin stepped forward and Hyunjin dragged himself across the bed to get away. This didn’t stop Changbin from approaching, and Hyunjin didn’t stop trying to retreat until his back hit the headboard and the chain attaching him to the footrest was almost pulled taut. Changbin only stopped then, two feet away, too close for comfort. “Let’s put it another way,” he said in a quiet voice, “I don’t care how alpha you are, right now you’re a lamb heading to the slaughter. Minho is going to make you hurt for pissing him and the others off. If he’s willing to drop thousands of dollars on us just holding you here, he’s serious.”

Hyunjin wanted to retort, to say that they were just the same as Minho, to try to not actually pay attention to what Changbin was saying because it was terrifying and he didn’t want to think about what would happen when Minho came back. Changbin crossed his arms, still uncomfortably close with seemingly little intention to back up. He spoke again before Hyunjin could.

“So we have a lamb, you, that is about to get slaughtered. Would you rather torture the lamb so it knows what it’s going to go through, or feed it well and care for it in its last few safe days?”

So that was their thought process. Hyunjin bowed his head. It was pity that brought them to apologize. The reason why Jisung had stopped mid-way through assaulting him was pity, the reason Changbin had kept sending Felix to feed him was pity, the reason why they let him shower, sleep in a bed, all of it was just pity. He felt his chest going numb at the thought. How bad was it going to get with Minho that these shitty people were actually worried about him? How final was this fate that they wanted to be kind to him until he reached it?

Changbin reached forward, but Hyunjin was too out of focus to respond. A little awkwardly, Changbin ran his fingers through Hyunjin’s hair, seeming to try to comfort him, seeming unused to doing so. “I can’t tell you it’ll be okay, but I can tell you that you won’t be hurt by us anymore,” Changbin muttered in the same low voice that he’d used with Felix just minutes ago. Hyunjin wasn’t sure why it felt a little comforting to hear, but he felt his body relax a little. His hand grazed from Hyunjin’s hair down the back of his neck, rubbing circles around his back. Hyunjin wasn’t sure if he wanted this person touching him, but any comfort was something after days of not having it, so he kept his head down and stayed quiet.

“Minho’s coming in a few days. You should know,” Changbin sighed.

He tensed again, a whine slipping from his throat. A few days. That was the amount of time he had until things would get drastically worse from this already horrible situation. He had a few days for them to pretend like they could make him okay before he absolutely wouldn’t be. He’d given up on escaping; With his foot so fucked up that it still hurt to put any pressure on, walking on his own, let alone running, would be out of the question. If they pitied him enough, could he continue to plead to be set free…?

“Please,” Hyunjin whispered, pouring his sincerity into his voice. “Please just… just let me go. If you have a conscience at all, if you care at all, please just let me go back home. I won’t rat you out, I won’t even talk about it. I can just say I ran away or something, please.”

Changbin’s eyes went cold, and he pulled his hand away. “You know that isn’t an option. As much as you say you won’t tell the police, isn’t that what got you here in the first place?” Hyunjin’s heart fell. What options did he have left…? It didn’t seem like he had any.

“I’m going to go make you some food. Tonight we’ll let you shower again. Don’t press my kindness any further, Hyunjin.”

And Hyunjin watched him leave, closing the door behind him, leaving him in the dark room once more. He slid down until he was curled up into the blankets again, biting his scabbing lip so hard that he tasted blood. Minho was coming back. He had a few days to either somehow get out of here or to accept his future, whatever it would be. He was positive that he wouldn’t be able to do either.

Chapter Text

The ride was quiet, as quiet as it could be with their radios buzzing every few seconds with other officers’ reports and updates from the station. Chan was driving down the long stretch of highway leading out of the suburbs, further away from the main city. Woojin took the passenger seat, watching the screen of the small laptop in his lap for directions. A red dot flashed on a map of the city, small but blatantly significant. It was the last location that Hyunjin’s phone was at before it either died or was broken. It looked to be on the side of the freeway, and Chan was exiting now as they rapidly approached the dot’s location. Woojin couldn’t help but feel his stomach turn as they drew closer and closer.

“Are you going to be okay?” Chan asked, breaking the silence so quietly that Woojin almost didn’t hear him.

Woojin had noticed him glancing over periodically but hadn’t acknowledged him, not having the energy to hold a conversation. But now that Chan was directly speaking to him, he quietly replied, “I don’t know.” He didn’t pull his eyes from the screen. “I really don’t know.”

Almost a week. His little brother had been gone for almost a week now. The statistics said that after four days, the chance of someone missing being found dropped significantly. Hyunjin didn’t run away. Even if Chan assured him that something like that must’ve happened, Woojin knew that Hyunjin had no reason to take off like that on his own. Jeongin had told them about Hyunjin catfishing, and Woojin was certain that that was connected to this case. But he just didn’t get why his little brother would do something like that. Hyunjin never seemed interested in a relationship, always telling Woojin about another omega that he’d turned down. What was his goal by pretending to be someone else online?

But that wasn’t even what was bothering Woojin the most. If Hyunjin hadn’t run away, it meant that he was either kidnapped or killed. The idea of either made him feel like he was about to shatter. Almost a week of him being missing. They’d taken a few days just convincing the station that this case was important enough to let Chan and Woojin focus on it solely. An alpha missing didn’t seem like too big of a deal to an outsider. ‘He’ll turn up,’ the chief had said. ‘This should be reported to a different department.’ It was only when Woojin gave up and told them that it was his little brother missing that they allowed him and Chan to give their other cases to other officers and focus on this one. Now they had the time to dive headfirst into looking for Hyunjin, but was it too late already? Kidnapped or killed… Both were gut-wrenching, but one was definitely more preferable than the other. Hyunjin was saveable if he was kidnapped. But who would kidnap an alpha?

“I’m scared,” Woojin whispered suddenly, not realizing that the words had slipped out of his own mouth until Chan was blinking over to him. He bowed his head before shaking it quickly. “Nevermind that-”

“No,” Chan said slowly, returning his focus to the road. They were slowing down now, the red dot was flashing closely to their location. “You have every right to be scared, Woojin. But we’ll find him. Let’s have faith.”

They pulled to a stop on the side of the road. Small businesses in long, one-story buildings were further back, but the dot was much closer to the street than the buildings. Woojin got out of the car and clicked on his flashlight, scanning the grass near the curb. Chan hurried out as well, but by the time he’d paced around the vehicle to help search, Woojin had already found what they were looking for.

He felt like he was going to suffocate. Hyunjin’s phone was distinguishable by the blue case it was in, this was definitely Hyunjin’s phone. The screen hadn’t been shattered before, the side hadn’t been dented in, and the case hadn’t been cracked. But it looked entirely broken now.

“It looks like it was either stepped on or thrown from a car,” Chan whispered. Woojin felt cold, he couldn’t bring himself to respond. Chan was right. The way the screen was cracked, it looked like the phone had bounced off of the asphalt and landed in the grass. Going at the speed of the speed limit on this road, it would make absolute sense. A car… Hyunjin didn’t own a car. Kidnapped or killed. It was one of the two, but this lead had fallen to a dead end.

“Let’s bring it in,” Chan said, patting Woojin’s back encouragingly. “They may be able to find a fingerprint on it. We’ll drive it up to the station and then head to your place to take a look at his computer.” Woojin nodded, watching as Chan slipped on one of his gloves and pulled a plastic bag from the side pocket hanging from his belt, taking the beaten up phone and dropping it in the bag. He rose from the grass and sighed upon seeing his coworkers exhausted expression. “Woojin, I know that this is hard…” He paused before shaking his head slowly. “I know that it is. But we have to keep going. As much as I want to tell you to go home and get some good sleep, I know that we have to keep following leads as quickly as possible.” Woojin nodded again, unable to find words. Chan’s voice barely penetrated the overwhelming thoughts about what could have happened to his little brother.

Chan frowned but simply said, “Let’s go drop this off, okay? No use standing here. It’ll be okay, Woojin. We’ll find him.”

But would they…? Woojin didn’t know. He clambered back into the car, fastened his seat belt, and stared back out the window. This street was a major one, it could lead anywhere on the southern outskirts of town. If they didn’t find a fingerprint on the phone, or if it wouldn’t turn back on to check its contents, it would mean that this lead was entirely dead. As Chan drove back to the station, Woojin closed his eyes. He didn’t want to imagine what Hyunjin could be going through right now if he was alive. If he even was alive. The thought made him nauseous. He just wanted to know if Hyunjin was okay. If he could have nothing else, he just wanted Hyunjin safe again.

 

——————————————————--

Felix sat on the side of the bed, feeding Hyunjin little cut up pieces of chicken. Hyunjin had seemed to grow used to being fed like this, and it was kind of soothing for Felix to watch him eat. With how little Hyunjin had eaten when he’d first arrived, Felix was worried that he’d refuse to consume anything. It would make sense; Felix didn’t eat either when he was kidnapped last year. But the fact that Hyunjin was eating meant that he was adjusting, meant that he was being rational enough to know that his health was still important here.

“Thank you,” Hyunjin mumbled between bites, and Felix hummed with a smile, feeding Hyunjin one of the last pieces of chicken. The room was quiet, still a little tense from the discussion with Changbin an hour ago.

Felix had gone downstairs as commanded then to find Jisung preparing the chicken quietly. When Felix had asked if he was feeling okay, Jisung had simply told him he didn’t want to talk. Felix had stayed quiet, helping Jisung cook. “Do you want me to tell Hyunjin that this is from you?” Felix had asked then. “It may help him feel better about you.”

“No,” Jisung had quietly said. And so Felix stayed silent as Hyunjin chewed up the last of the chicken and swallowed. They were quiet, and Felix almost excused himself to leave, figuring Hyunjin might want to rest, when Hyunjin spoke up.

“I’m sorry for scaring you earlier. I didn’t mean to yell,” he said quietly, staring down at his feet that hung from the side of the bed. Felix shook his head quickly, waving a hand. “You didn’t scare me, Hyunjin, it’s totally fine. I just… Loud voices make me nervous. It’s just some stupid thing…”

“It’s not stupid,” Hyunjin assured. “I’ll try to remember this so that I don’t yell again. I just… I feel hopeless,” he confessed, shoulders drooping, weak gaze focused on the carpet. “How did you get through this before…?”

Felix followed Hyunjin’s eyes down to the floor, the corners of his lips dropping into a frown. “I just did what you’re doing. Worried a ton, yelled some. When I realized that it wasn’t getting me anywhere, I tried to be obedient. At first it was just an act. I thought that if I could get Changbin to trust me, he’d give me more freedom and I could run away. After he took me back from that couple though, I really felt gratitude towards him. I realized that there was nothing for me in the outside world, that I felt okay just staying with him and Jisung.”

“Even though they’re terrible people? At least Jisung is, you can’t argue that-”

“Hyunjin, Jisung had a breakdown after what he did to you,” Felix said quietly. Hyunjin blinked, startled into silence. Felix continued softly, “He’s not a bad person. He plays himself off as one, sure. It’s a defense mechanism. Jisung takes care of me almost as much as Changbin does. I’m sure if he wasn’t so prideful he’d have apologized himself by now.”

Hyunjin didn’t know how to take these words. Was it true after all…? Both Changbin and Felix were defending Jisung, surely that meant something. But then again, these were Jisung’s friends. Of course they’d defend him. He sighed, wishing he could shower sooner. The water pounding on his body would wash these thoughts away, these overwhelming thoughts that lingered on and around his skin like a plague.

Felix stared at the empty bowl in his hands, swinging his feet back and forth as he said, “I wish that they could save you too, like they did for me. I wish that Minho would change his mind like the couple did for me and you could just stay here.” Hyunjin shook his head, but Felix only frowned at him. “If you’re against it then you really don’t know what you’re getting yourself into. Changbin said that Minho is a scary person. Coming from Changbin, that’s worrisome…”

“I’m trying not to think about it,” Hyunjin admitted irritably. Everyone kept warning him. ‘Minho is coming.’ ‘Minho is scary.’ ‘Minho will hurt you.’ Like he didn’t already know. His heart raced every time he thought of the blue-haired man. He didn’t have an exact estimate of how many days were left, just that there weren’t many before he’d be taken away by this seemingly horrid person. But he still had the tiniest hope that he could go home somehow, and that hope was the only thing keeping him from agreeing with Felix’s wishes. He didn’t want to stay with Changbin and Jisung, if he could help it he never wanted to see either of them again. Felix was kind to him, but even Felix was someone who reminded him that he was in chains right now, that he was injured and vulnerable right now.

“Trying not to think about it won’t help, you know,” Felix sighed, but he didn’t press any further than that.

He stood and Hyunjin blinked up at the feeling of the bed lifting. “Are you leaving?” he asked, wishing his voice didn’t sound as pitiful as it did. Felix smiled at him but gave a soft nod.

“It’s getting late. I have to wash the dishes. I know Changbin’s going to help you shower. I don’t think Jisung will be there, so I’ll be up to help as well,” Felix said before turning and leaving, the door clicking shut behind him. Hyunjin fell back into the blankets. Jisung had been thankfully gone ever since the incident, and Hyunjin could only hope that he wouldn’t be there when he showered. It was small things that mattered now, small things like this. He’d continue to try and forget his future, he’d continue to cling to his past. It was all he could do in this moment, and so he fell asleep dreaming of breaking Seungmin out of his house until Changbin shook him awake to shower.

Chapter Text

Changbin escorted Hyunjin down the hall, minding his limp this time and keeping a slow pace. As expected, it had been so nice sitting under the hot water, and Changbin even let him take a longer shower to relax a little. It was almost too good, how kindly he was being treated all of the sudden. Hyunjin still didn’t trust them, but he could at least take advantage of the kindness he was being granted. The lack of fear for the first time in days did ease his anxiety a little.

Felix walked at their side, just as slowly as they were going, holding a glass of water he’d ran to grab after realizing that he forgot to give Hyunjin anything to drink during his meal. Hyunjin did feel safe around Felix. He wasn’t sure about Changbin, but Changbin wasn’t the one that did the damage. With Jisung not showing his face since the incident, Hyunjin almost felt safe. Almost.

They entered the room. Hyunjin dreaded being chained back to the bed, but he knew there was no use arguing. His legs felt so numb and heavy, especially the hurt one, and he attributed it to sitting down for so long without being able to walk around at all. At least if he was going to be taking regular showers now he’d be able to take the walk down the hall and back to get the blood flowing again. It was nice too, being uncuffed for a little bit to wash his hair and body.

He knelt down on the bed and held still as Changbin took the chain and began fastening it to the handcuffs they’d recently clicked back on after his shower, and Hyunjin couldn’t help but feel his heart fall as he heard the click of a lock behind him. It was always discouraging knowing that there was no way to just break free of the chains. He well expected Changbin to walk out after ensuring that Hyunjin was locked up, but the other alpha instead walked over to lean against the wall near the door, folding his arms over his chest.

“I want to talk to you about something,” Changbin began. Hyunjin felt wary. Their last talk had gone okay, so he wasn’t as anxious as he figured he should be, but even still it always concerned him a little. Changbin paused, as if putting his words together, before staring into Hyunjin’s eyes with that deep gaze that the younger couldn’t ever get used to.

“It’s about what Jisung did. Well, somewhat at least. I think it might be something that needs to happen again safely.”

And Hyunjin immediately tensed. What the fuck was he talking about…?! Changbin continued, “To put things honestly, it’s probably better if you get used to sex before going to Minho. He’ll hurt you almost for sure, and being uh… prepped, I guess, would benefit you. I don’t care either way honestly, it’s your body, not mine. It wouldn’t be Jisung, and I won’t let you touch Felix.” Felix flushed, bowing his head, still holding the cup of water between his hands. “But I won’t be rough or anything. I get that this isn’t really something that you’re used to, but again, Minho’s going to want to touch you regardless of whether you’re ready or not. Might be best to be prepared.”

Felix nodded slowly in agreement, and Hyunjin trembled. This wasn’t at all what he expected from this conversation and the anxiety hit like a train. All he could remember was Jisung’s hands on him, in him, and it was too much. “No,” he said hurriedly, determinedly. “No,” he repeated, shaking his head. “I don’t want any of you touching me ever again.”

Changbin shrugged. Felix however didn’t seem sure. “Hyunjin, I promise this isn’t a selfish thing,” the omega pleaded. “I think it’s a good idea. I know it sounds bad, but it’s for your sake.” There were those words again. ‘For your sake.’ Hyunjin stayed quiet and Felix hurried to continue, “Changbin is gentle, he won’t hurt you. To go through the least amount of pain possible, this is the safest way.”

Changbin spoke up before Hyunjin could protest. “No matter the case, it’s your choice. But know that the option is always on the table, at least until you have to go.” He then turned to leave, and Hyunjin didn’t stop him. He didn’t want it, but in terms of being rational… Was this really the best decision? If Minho was going to do something like that to him, he knew already from his experience with him that it wouldn’t be something comfortable or smooth. If they were promising to take care of him properly… He shook his head. What was he thinking? Was he really going along with this? But he couldn’t help but wonder if it was a good decision after all. If Jisung wasn’t involved, and if Minho was going to hurt him anyway… He didn’t know. He didn’t want to think about it.

Felix sighed softly, reaching over to rub Hyunjin’s back. “It’s stressful, I know,” he said gently. “I know that this is a lot to take in, but just think about it okay?”

Hyunjin stared at his feet. He felt bitter and worn from everything that had happened over the past few days. Was he really getting used to his situation so much that he was considering allowing one of his kidnappers to touch him like that? But in the end, it really would be the safer choice. Felix was waiting for a response, so he whispered, “I’ll think about it,”

———————————————————

It was weird being in Hyunjin’s room without asking for his permission to come in. Woojin usually respected Hyunjin’s privacy, but walking in without knocking only reminded him further that Hyunjin was gone. Chan followed him, giving him a supportive pat on the shoulder as they stepped over clothes strewn across the floor to get to the computer sitting on the desk against the wall.

Woojin fell into the chair, Hyunjin’s chair, that was raised up a little too high for him. He didn’t want to lower it; When Hyunjin came back, he’d want it at the same adjustment that he’d left it at right? And Hyunjin had to come back. He had to. Woojin waved the mouse and the screen came to life… onto an ‘enter password’ screen.

“Fuck,” he mumbled, Chan glancing to the screen and humming.

“Is there a hint?” Chan asked hopefully. “If there is, I’m sure you’d be able to guess it. You know him pretty well after all.”

Woojin clicked the little question mark in the corner of the screen. Nothing popped up. “No hint,” he sighed. “It’s probably something intricate, knowing him.”

“Would Seungmin know?” Chan asked.

“Doubt it, but I can call.”

“Worst case we can bring the entire computer up to the station. There’s the tech department on floor three that could hack through a password, right?” Chan said slowly before shrugging. “We’ll call Seungmin first though.”

Woojin whipped out his phone, dialing Hyunjin’s best friend’s number. It rang two times before Seungmin sleepily picked up. “Ello?” he mumbled, his voice raspy and tired. Woojin had forgotten that it was nearly two in the morning by now, but the call was too important to hang up.

“Hi Seungmin, it’s Woojin.”

That seemed to wake the younger up some, shifting sounds coming from the other line as Seungmin cleared his throat, sounding a little more awake when he said, “Oh, uh, Woojin. I meant to call you tomorrow, actually. Is something urgent?” There was a pause before Seungmin gasped. “Did you find him?!”

“Not yet,” Woojin sighed. “It’s pretty urgent, yeah. We can’t log into his computer. Do you by chance have a guess as to what his password might be?”

Seungmin went quiet. “If you’re logging onto his computer… Do you know?” He then huffed out a low breath, mumbling sadly, “I really was going to tell you. I felt so guilty keeping it a secret, but I figured it was what Hyunjin would want me to do.”

Woojin frowned. “The catfishing?”

“Yeah. No use hiding it now. Who told you?”

Woojin thought about it before muttering, “It’s disclosed information, I’m not allowed to tell you. What can you tell me about that?”

Seungmin’s voice sounded tired, more tired than just waking up. It was as if this was his first time sleeping in a long time, and the exhaustion sounded more than just physical. “He’s been doing it for months now. He poses as omegas online. He had like five accounts that he’d use to try and lure in shitty alphas.”

“Why would he do that? And why did he hide it from me?” Woojin asked. Seungmin’s response was almost too quiet to hear.

“He hid it from you cause… Well… Shit, this is so hard to just expose…”

“Tell me, Seungmin.”

Seungmin sighed heftily. “Hyunjin is your anonymous tipper.”

Woojin’s heart skipped a beat. What…? They’d been receiving the tips for months now, but there was no way… How could Hyunjin be the person turning in all of those bad guys? His little brother who was popular at school, his little brother who hadn’t even graduated yet, he was the anonymous tipper? Chan was wide eyed, listening to the conversation from the speaker, shaking his head slowly.

“Are you… Are you serious?” Woojin asked. He couldn’t wrap his head around it. Hyunjin was doing something so dangerous and Woojin hadn’t had a clue the entire time.

“Of course I’m serious,” Seungmin muttered. “He didn’t tell you because he knew you’d protest it. This whole time, he’s looked up to you so much. He wanted to do something to help omegas, and he knew there was a lot of scum online, so he started posing as omegas himself to report everyone who seemed dangerous. And it worked. And he was proud of it. But now…” His voice broke, it sounded like he was about to cry. “But now he’s gone, and that’s probably the reason why. Some asshole that he pissed off probably fucking…” he choked on his words, finally sobbing, “Probably fucking killed him or something, and… Fuck, I’m so sorry Woojin. I’m so sorry that I didn’t do anything, I knew the whole time and I didn’t think it was a problem but now…”

Woojin felt himself shaking, the misery sinking into his bones, and Chan was there to rub his back but he almost felt numb to it. Seungmin’s voice was weak, and he breathed, “I’m gonna hang up now if there’s nothing else I can help with. I don’t know his log in, he never told me. I’m really sorry.”

As the call dropped, Woojin dropped his face into his hands and cried.

Chapter Text

Changbin made his way back down the stairs after talking to Hyunjin, sighing as he saw Jisung sitting at the kitchen table, staring off into space. “Jisung,” he called, and the other’s head shot up, as if he had been snapped back to focus.

“Oh, Changbin. How did the talk go…?” he asked. He smiled awkwardly, and after knowing him for ages, Changbin could tell easily that it was forced.

“It went fine I guess. He seemed against it but Lix is still talking to him so… Maybe he’ll think rationally about it.” Jisung nodded slowly to Changbin’s words, sighing heavily. He’d looked more tired than he had in a while lately, and Changbin equated it to the same expression he’d had in the days after their first hit. It was obvious that the guilt was eating him alive. Two more days till Minho came back, two more days to do something about it.

“You can still apologize, you know,” Changbin offered with a sigh, pouring himself a cup of coffee from the half-empty coffee maker, making his way to sit back at the table across from Jisung.

Jisung shook his head slowly. “He won’t accept it,” he said simply, and Changbin shrugged.

“He doesn’t have to accept it. At least he’ll know that you’re sincere. Me apologizing for you didn’t sound like you cared too much, when you obviously do care. Go up there, say sorry. Have Lix stay there with you so he doesn’t freak out.”

Jisung stared down at the glass of untouched water between his hands, pushing it away from himself as he stood weakly from his chair. “Okay,” he finally decided, the exhaustion finally having made the choice for him. “I’ll go.”

————————————————————————

Felix was about to excuse himself from Hyunjin’s room when there was a knock at the door. Peering out, since Changbin had left it partially open, his eyes widened as he saw who was out there. “Uh… yeah?” he said weakly. This was not good. This would not be good. Hyunjin seemed in a restless mindset already from the talk with Changbin, seeing Jisung was the last thing that should happen. But Felix couldn’t just tell Jisung to get out, it was against his nature to do so. He flinched as the door slowly creaked open, at least relieved that Jisung stayed in the doorway, a safe distance away.

Hyunjin’s eyes went wide before narrowing tightly, Felix’s hand was still on the alpha’s back and he could physically feel how Hyunjin tensed. “What… What do you want?” Hyunjin growled, but no one missed how he stuttered the words out. Jisung bowed his head, and Felix knew that this conversation wasn’t likely to be healthy for either of them. What was Jisung thinking, coming here now…?

“I really… ah,” Jisung sighed. “To put it short, I want to apologize.”

Hyunjin was trembling, shaking his head. “You don’t get to apologize,” he spat. “I know you don’t mean it.”

Jisung’s eyes were pleading but Hyunjin wouldn’t know it, not knowing Jisung well enough to distinguish the tiny details of his expression like Felix could. This was difficult to watch, and Felix shrunk into himself a little. A fight between two alphas was not something he wanted to be in the middle of, so he stayed silent.

“Hyunjin, I am really sorry. I thought… Well, no, I didn’t think. I didn’t think at all, and that’s why I did those things. I just considered you another target, I didn’t realize that you’re different, and-”

“I’m different?” Hyunjin laughed bitterly. “How? How am I different? Those people you beat up and dump water on and assault usually, how do they act in comparison to me? You’re just going to do it again if I accept your apology, I’m not even going to-”

“They’re murderers,” Jisung whispered. Hyunjin went quiet, glaring daggers into the other alpha’s eyes. “The people that I do those things to. The first person who we did something like this to killed my family.” This seemed to snap Hyunjin awake, and confusion blossomed on his face. Felix kept his head down. He didn’t expect Jisung to admit something so vulnerable to someone like Hyunjin who barely knew him. It attested to how sincere he actually felt about this, and Felix figured Jisung must’ve been thinking constantly over all of the things that he’d done to Hyunjin over the course of the past week.

“I’m not trying to make you feel guilty for being mad at me,” Jisung continued, his voice raspy and worn. “You have every right to be mad. But I need to explain myself, right…? We’ve been doing this, running hits, since I was thirteen. And I grew numb to it. I started taking out all of this anger and fear that I felt on every terrible person I could get my hands on. Murderers, criminals, rapists, I wanted to tear them all apart.”

Hyunjin opened his mouth to speak, but Jisung was hurrying to continue.

“And I know what you’re about to say. How am I different from them? That’s what I realized after… after what I did to you. That I’m really not that different from them at all.” He choked on his words but shook his head, as if willing himself not to break down here, willing himself to continue because this was important to him now too. More important than just his apology to Hyunjin, this was important for his own sake as well.

“I didn’t think. You were just another hit, another person I could vent at. I’ve been doing this for so long now that it’s become habit to just… let loose this violent side of myself. I wasn’t thinking at all, and I’m so sorry for what I did.”

Hyunjin fell quiet, he didn’t seem to know how to respond, the anger having faded from his eyes, instead replaced with a distraught emotion that Felix couldn’t read. He wouldn’t look Jisung in the eyes, and Jisung didn’t seem to be trying to catch his gaze, both of them staring down at the floor as if the answers as to how to feel were written in the carpet. Jisung bit his lip for a little bit, coming to the realization that Hyunjin wasn’t going to speak.

“I’m sorry,” he said again. “I really am sorry. And you don’t have to forgive me, I don’t expect you to, but I had to tell you before you… before you go.” And with that he turned to leave, and Hyunjin said nothing to bring him back. Felix wanted to chase after Jisung but knew that leaving Hyunjin’s side right now probably wasn’t a good idea either. Torn between the two, he stayed on the bed, digging his fingers into the sheets.

“Is… that all true?” Hyunjin whispered. Felix bowed his head.

“He wasn’t lying. Changbin told me about it a few months ago, their story. Jisung’s been through a lot, they both have. It still doesn’t excuse what happened, I know, but…”

“I want to sleep,” Hyunjin mumbled suddenly, and Felix blinked, hurriedly lifting himself from the bed and adjusting the pillows so that Hyunjin could comfortably lay on them. He said goodnight and turned the lights off. He’d noticed that Hyunjin always slept when he had too much on his mind, and he hoped that what was on Hyunjin’s mind was something that could resolve the tension between him and Jisung, was something that could maybe heal them both at least a little.

Before he could leave the room, Hyunjin spoke up again, and Felix had to crane to hear his words.

“Tell… Tell Changbin that I’ll do it.”

Felix took a second to process what he was talking about before realizing. He slowly smiled.

“Okay.”

Chapter Text

Changbin had trouble sleeping throughout the night, but finally the next day came. Felix was still asleep when he crawled out of bed, running his fingers through the omega’s hair before leaving to make and eat breakfast. Today was the day, the last day before Minho came back. He knew that it would likely be best for Hyunjin to have time to change his mind in case he wanted to, but there wasn’t any time for that. He figured that if he couldn’t give Hyunjin more time, he might as well get to it pretty soon.

Changbin made his way to Hyunjin’s room and knocked to announce that he was entering before opening the door. Hyunjin was sitting up against the headrest staring at the chain attached to the bedpost. It was likely that he’d stayed up all night thinking about this. His eyes went wide when he saw Changbin in the doorway. Changbin softly smiled at him, the first time he’d smiled in a while. It felt wrong on his face, but Hyunjin likely needed the comfort given how shaken up he was. Changbin had to admit that he himself was nervous for this. He’d never done anything like this with anyone but Felix, and the thought of it felt wrong too. But no one else could do this but him, and he wasn’t necessarily against it, so he walked in and closed the door behind him.

“Do you want the light on or off?” he asked first, because it mattered. Some people liked the comfort of the lights for their first time, others didn’t want to see to be reminded of what they were doing. Hyunjin likely wouldn’t want to see Changbin’s face, so he expected Hyunjin to want the lights to remain off.

But Hyunjin mumbled, “Can they be on?”

It made a little sense in the perspective of him barely trusting Changbin to be touching him. The older alpha flicked the lights on and walked to the dresser, kneeling down to drag open the bottom shelf. It was a little creaky from lack of use; The last time they’d opened this drawer was when they were taming one of Felix’s heats almost a full year ago, before Felix and Changbin got together.

He dug through the contents, asking as he did so, “So what made you change your mind?”

A blindfold, handcuffs, a vibrator. Changbin had actually gone out to buy lubricant, which was in his back pocket; Omegas almost always produced their own slick, and alpha on alpha sex was so taboo that nothing was really sold for it. It took him a while to find, but a pharmacy sold lubricant for the rare omegas that couldn’t produce slick, and he figured that would have to do.

Hyunjin’s voice was a little shaky, a little insecure. “Jisung seemed sorry.” Changbin didn’t really understand how that correlated with his question. Hyunjin continued nervously, “I was scared of this because… well…” Changbin hummed for him to continue. Hyunjin sighed. “I didn’t trust that you wouldn’t take advantage of me. I still kind of don’t, but Felix also talked to me about it and Jisung seemed sorry and even though you guys are kind of shitty people, I can believe that you wouldn’t… hurt me.” He paused, biting his lip as if regretting the words that had slipped out in his ramble. Changbin only snorted at the ‘shitty people’ remark, finally picking up the contents he would need. Hyunjin was already cuffed, and a blindfold was useless if Hyunjin wanted the lights on to see. He took the vibrator and slipped the lubricant from his pocket, standing and nudging the drawer closed with his foot. He turned and he saw Hyunjin swallow, staring at Changbin’s hands like he was holding a weapon rather than a toy. Changbin made his way to the opposite side of the bed and dropped the items onto the nightstand.

“Okay,” he said with a big exhale. “I’m going to be very direct with you throughout this. Entirely transparent. If you don’t know what I’m doing, or you’re worried about something, or you want me to slow down or stop, you have to tell me. Okay?”

Hyunjin nodded meekly. He still hadn’t taken his eyes off of the items, staring at them on the nightstand rather than looking at Changbin speaking. Changbin shrugged it off, before sitting on the bed on his knees. Upon feeling the comforter dip, Hyunjin blinked hurriedly, focusing on Changbin again with anxiety in his eyes. Changbin held up his hands, a gesture of peace, before crawling forward.

“Sit up and turn away from me, okay? I’m gonna readjust your arms so that they don’t get in the way.”

“Can’t you just take the cuffs off?” Hyunjin mumbled.

“And let you strangle me or something? Even if you can’t run, I don’t want to risk you having your hands free. Sorry.” Changbin said seriously. Hyunjin sighed, turning as told and bowing his head as Changbin fidgeted with the lock attaching the chain to the cuffs.

Soon the lock was off and the chain was falling loose to the bed. Next Changbin unlocked Hyunjin’s hands entirely, making sure to have a firm grip on his wrist in case he decided to act out suddenly. He didn’t tell Hyunjin that he had a knife in his back pocket, but if something went out of hand, he’d easily be able to tame the situation.

“Okay, now lay down on your back with your hands above your head. I’m going to lock your hands to the headboard,” Changbin said, staying true to his promise to be transparent throughout this. Hyunjin swallowed but did as told, and Changbin looped the handcuffs through the intricate design carved into the wooden headboard, taking Hyunjin’s wrists and clicking the cuffs around them once more.

Hyunjin was breathing quickly, Changbin could see the rise and fall of his chest. “Calm down,” he said softly. “This won’t hurt, I won’t hurt you. This is only so that you don’t get hurt later and there’s no malicious intent behind this.” Hyunjin nodded, and slowly he relaxed a little. Changbin sighed. “This will be a little awkward though, just in advance. It always is.”

“I expected it to be,” Hyunjin muttered shakily, avoiding Changbin’s eyes. “What are you going to do first?”

“I’m going to pet you first. It makes it feel better later if your body is used to hands on it and gets warmed up a little. It should feel good,” Changbin replied, and Hyunjin took a deep breath, nodding.

It was awkward, the first touch. Changbin placed his hand on Hyunjin’s shoulder and slowly dragged it down the fabric of his shirt until he was meeting skin rather than cloth. Hyunjin flinched at the touch but Changbin didn’t pull away, slowly grazing his hand up and down Hyunjin’s arm, letting his nails drag lightly against his skin. He then moved back up and over Hyunjin’s shoulder, running his hand down the alpha’s chest. Hyunjin sucked in a small breath at the feeling as Changbin spread his hand and rubbed along Hyunjin’s stomach.

“Does it feel okay?” he asked.

Hyunjin shrugged weakly. “It doesn’t feel like much of anything.”

“That’s fine,” Changbin replied, but didn’t stop. He rubbed Hyunjin’s arms and shoulders again. The second time he went towards his chest, he grazed his fingers over one of Hyunjin’s nipples. Hyunjin jumped a little and Changbin moved on, softly stroking down Hyunjin’s stomach.

“I’m going to put my hand in your pants now,” he said.

“Okay.”

Changbin slowly let his hand guide down Hyunjin’s stomach, further and further until he met his waistline, pushing past it until finally he was wrapping his fingers around Hyunjin’s limp dick. Hyunjin bit his lip at the feeling as Changbin began to stroke up and down, a little awkwardly with how his wrist was bent to accommodate for Hyunjin still wearing pants. “Can I take these off?” Changbin asked, motioning the Hyunjin’s pants. Hyunjin thought about it, insecurity vivid in his expression. He finally gave a slow nod.

And so Changbin slipped his pants down his legs until he was pulling them off entirely. They hadn’t given Hyunjin underwear, and so he was naked from the waist down. Hyunjin was staring off at the wall of the room, his cheeks pink with embarrassment. Changbin figured it was kind of cute. Hyunjin’s dick was smaller than most alphas’, which was cute in and of itself as well, and Changbin took hold of it, giving it a few more strokes. Hyunjin whined, his fingers curling into fists above his head. Slowly, Hyunjin began to harden, and Changbin only let go when his cock was leaking a little against his stomach.

“Still feeling okay?”

“Feels good,” Hyunjin admitted, mumbling so lowly that Changbin barely made out the words.

The elder smiled a little at the answer, reaching over to the nightstand to grab the toy and lubricant. Hyunjin frowned upon seeing the toy up closer, and Changbin was quick to reassure him. “This won’t be going in yet. I’ll stretch you out first with my fingers so that it doesn’t hurt. I have this,” he held up the bottle, “to slicken you up too so that it won’t hurt. It might feel uncomfortable but that’s it.” Hyunjin nodded again, eyes slipping from the toy to stare up at the ceiling this time. It was clear that he didn’t want to look at Changbin’s face while this was happening, but the elder took no offense in that. This wasn’t intimacy. It was just preparation, and while Changbin wanted to be gentle throughout it, he didn’t have many feelings towards what was going on. His nervousness had faded as the awkwardness never really escalated, and he could tell that Hyunjin was beginning to trust him a little more since the first touch.

He popped open the bottle and dumped a little bit of the oily substance over his fingers. It was slick and cold, and he rubbed his hands together to warm it up before bringing his fingers down to Hyunjin’s hole. “I’m going to press in now,” he said softly. “Like I said, it’ll feel a little uncomfortable, but it shouldn’t hurt.” Hyunjin didn’t respond, and Changbin noticed that he was squeezing his eyes closed like he expected the pain to come. His expression softened a little when Changbin actually pushed his finger in, deliberately slow, and Hyunjin seemed somewhat relieved. That was relieving for Changbin as well. He was a little worried, since he didn’t know how far Jisung had taken things. If he’d somehow torn or scraped Hyunjin on the inside, even something as small as this would absolutely hurt. But thankfully that didn’t seem to be the case.

“Feel okay?”

“Feels weird,” Hyunjin admitted. Changbin nodded.

“It will. I’m going to move my hand now.” While slowly bringing his finger further in and out of Hyunjin, he grabbed his cock again, giving it a few strokes. Hyunjin sighed, his throat bobbing with a swallow. Changbin kept going for a second.

“I’m gonna add another finger and begin to stretch you out.”

“Okay,” Hyunjin replied. His voice was shaky now in a different way than before, and his cock leaked a little precum onto his shirt. Changbin made a mental reminder that he’d have to get Hyunjin a fresh shirt after this and pushed the second finger in.

It was a few minutes of quiet. Hyunjin’s breaths were loud and soft, Changbin found himself matching them as he fingered the younger slowly. It was calm, which was good, and Hyunjin hadn’t changed his mind midway through, which honestly surprised Changbin. He began to stretch the two fingers, Hyunjin frowning at the feeling.

“Uncomfortable,” he mumbled, and Changbin hummed in understanding, letting go of Hyunjin’s cock and bringing his free hand up to stroke his hand up and down Hyunjin’s chest and stomach again. Hyunjin sighed at the feeling, relaxing a little. Changbin honestly wondered why this was such a taboo thing. He expected Hyunjin to feel rough or something, but it kind of felt the same as touching and fingering Felix, just with artificial slick. It was something to do with their culture, he knew, but it still came as a surprise.

After a few more minutes, Changbin pulled his fingers out, surprised when Hyunjin actually whimpered at the feeling. The younger alpha immediately flushed, eyes flicking back open when they’d been closed for minutes. “Are you gonna…” he started, and Changbin nodded.

“You’re stretched out now, so it won’t hurt to go in,” he promised, grabbing the vibrator once more and coating it with the lubricant. He rubbed it up and down to warm it before bringing it down to Hyunjin’s hole. He began to push it in, but Hyunjin was so tense that he was having trouble.

“Breathe,” Changbin said, “You have to relax or it won’t fit.” Hyunjin nodded, slowly relaxing a little, his chest rising and falling heavily. Slowly the vibrator sank in, and Changbin kept pushing it forward until it was at the base.

“I feel full,” Hyunjin mumbled. “It’s weird.”

Changbin smiled softly before pulling the vibrator back. It was a little difficult, Hyunjin’s walls still so tight, but the younger didn’t seem to be in too much discomfort so he pulled it back until only the tip was in. Slowly, he pushed it back in. Hyunjin sighed gently, his fingers digging into his palms as Changbin slowly, slowly upped the speed of his thrusts. Hyunjin bit his lip as he moved faster and faster. Changbin tested out angles at each thrust until finally Hyunjin gasped, his hips arching up off the bed and his head throwing back and smacking against the headboard. He didn’t even seem to notice that he’d hit it, and Changbin pulled back and stopped.

“What was that?” Hyunjin gasped out. Changbin was surprised as well. He knew that omegas had a prostate, it made sense, but he didn’t expect an alpha to have one. “It’s uh, a prostate,” he said dumbfounded. “It’s something that feels good if you touch it. Want me to try to do it again?”

Hyunjin flushed but nodded. Changbin reached back down and took hold of the vibrator, slowly pushing it in again and thrusting up. Hyunjin moaned, heels digging into the bed and nails digging into his palms. Over and over Changbin pressed in against that one place, and each time Hyunjin would gasp or moan. It was satisfying, and Changbin bit his lip as he felt himself getting hard at the sound and sight of Hyunjin writhing beneath him. Hyunjin really was beautiful for an alpha. His voice, his face, his body, all of it. He didn’t feel any romantic attraction towards him, but he could admire him for what he was.

Slowly he picked up the pace until his wrist began to hurt a little, but he didn’t want to stop given how into it Hyunjin had gotten. He was writhing a little, panting out little moans that were growing higher and higher in pitch and loudness. He was likely getting close to his release.

Knowing this, Changbin took hold of his cock again and began stroking it rapidly. This had Hyunjin almost crying out, his cheeks pink, his eyes squeezed shut and his head thrown back. He got louder and louder until Changbin was sure that the entire house could hear what was happening, his body tensed, and he moaned out one last time before hot cum began to shoot from his cock over his shirt and Changbin’s hand.

Slowly, he relaxed, gasping for air. Changbin let go and pulled the vibrator out. He hadn’t even turned it on, just pushing it in had been enough, and Changbin felt relieved. It was good that this had happened. Not only could Hyunjin trust him now, now that he’d fulfilled his promise and didn’t take advantage of him, but now Hyunjin would be much more prepared for what to expect when Minho would take over.

“That was…” Hyunjin panted. “That was a lot.”

Changbin chuckled, clambering off the bed. “I know, it’s supposed to be a lot. See, it wasn’t painful though, right?”

Hyunjin nodded, finally looking Changbin in the eyes. Hyunjin’s eyes were heavy-lidded, warm and sleepy. His cheeks were still flushed, and Changbin noted that some of his cum had somehow reached up to his collarbone. “I’ll get some towels and clean you up. I’ll be right back,” he said, making his way out the door.

As he was in the bathroom, wetting down a towel, Felix peeked his head in. He looked anxious, and Changbin tilted his head in concern.

“Was… Did he like it?” Felix asked, a soft, worried smile on his face.

“He did. You probably heard him right?”

“Yeah,” Felix admitted, cheeks dusting pink before he frowned a little. “Did… did you like it?”

This question was heavier, and Changbin immediately knew what was going on.

“I didn’t really care about it,” he admitted. “Like we planned, it was just preparing him for what’s to come. I don’t have feelings for him, Lix, even now.”

“You’re hard though,” Felix mumbled. Changbin nearly cursed.

“It was hot,” he shrugged, “But it’s like porn, you know? You can watch porn and not feel attached to anyone you’re watching, right?”

Felix slowly nodded, relief dawning on his face. “I’m glad that he’s doing good,” he admitted, and Changbin could read honesty on his face. “I was worried that it wouldn’t go well, or that he’d change his mind.”

Changbin nodded. “I was too. Hold on, I’m gonna go clean him up. Could you grab him something to eat and drink?”

Felix nodded and hurried off, and Changbin smiled as he went back to the room. Things would be okay for them, and even if things wouldn’t be okay for Hyunjin soon, at least he wouldn’t suffer as badly, and at least he would have one good day beforehand.

Chapter Text

They’d taken Hyunjin to the bathroom again to clean himself up, they’d fed him. Changbin had spent the entire two hours with him wondering how he should phrase that Minho wasn’t just coming soon, he was coming tomorrow.

They didn’t know what time, and Changbin almost hoped the lack of planning meant that the elder wasn’t coming at all. But rationally, he knew that wouldn’t be true. Minho would show up whenever the hell he wanted to, and that made things even more worrisome for them. They wouldn’t have time to be fully prepared for his arrival.

But they had to tell Hyunjin, this was absolutely not something that could come as a surprise, so he knocked on the door a little after Felix had left and made his way in. Hyunjin glanced up, blinking quickly to wake himself up as Changbin made his way in, leaving the door cracked so the light from the hallway wouldn’t leave them in complete darkness.

“Hey,” Changbin said, rubbing the back of his neck. “How are you feeling?”

Hyunjin flushed. They’d given him clean, warm clothes and a good meal, so he was likely feeling fine, especially after how much he’d seemed to enjoy what Changbin did with him. “I’m okay,” he mumbled before tilting his head. “Why are you here?” Worried curiosity dawned on his face; It seemed like he could read Changbin’s expression, as much as the elder had tried to keep it neutral.

And so he sighed and relented. No use postponing the inevitable with small talk. “Minho… he’s going to be here sometime tomorrow.”

He could see the exact moment that Hyunjin in his exhaustion comprehended what he’d said, the younger alpha sitting up quickly, eyes wide. “Tomorrow?!” Changbin could only regret not telling him sooner. He didn’t want Hyunjin to go through the past few days worried and scared, but honestly time had flown by faster than he’d expected, and only hours ago did he realize that he hadn’t even warned the younger of when exactly Minho would be back.

“Yes,” he said softly. Hyunjin wouldn’t know that he’d known the entire time, which was good for him, but he still felt a little guilty, still wished he could go back and warn him sooner. He hadn’t cared before, but somehow over time he’d grown at least a little fond of the younger alpha, and now he felt honestly bad for the anxiety creased over Hyunjin’s face now.

“Is he… What is he going to do…?” Hyunjin asked shakily. Changbin wished he could give him an answer. What was Minho going to do? Was he going to take Hyunjin like he’d planned to initially? Was he going to leave him with them like he said he’d do if Hyunjin wasn’t fully trained? And besides those two outcomes, would he hurt him?

“I don’t know,” Changbin admitted honestly. “But I can promise you that it’ll go a lot smoother if you just do what he says.”

Hyunjin shook his head quickly. “I don’t want to though...! He’s the reason for all of this, isn’t he? If I do what he says he’s just going to think he’s beaten me and-”

“And he’ll go easier on you than if you don’t listen to him at all,” Changbin finished. “Minho is not the type of person to give up on you if you’re too far out of his hands. He’s got people putting money on you, he’s putting money on you. He’s not in a position to give up on you, he’ll just push harder.”

Hyunjin swallowed, bowing his head, eyes darting from the sheets to Changbin to the wall, everywhere as he tried to come up with some sort of plan. It was useless. Changbin frowned, stepping forward and kneeling beside the bed, tapping Hyunjin’s shoulder to have the younger meeting his eyes. Hyunjin’s eyes were fearful, and Changbin held them with his own. “Hyunjin, promise me that you’ll be obedient through tomorrow. I know things have been shitty, I know that the future is scary. But for your sake, you have to let him do what he wants.”

Hyunjin began to shake his head, but Changbin tsked, glaring into the younger’s eyes. “You don’t get it yet do you? You don’t know what these people do to other people on a regular basis,” he growled. “Do you think I’m asking you to be nice to him for no reason? He’s going to hurt you worse if you don’t seem submissive enough to him.”

It wasn’t just that. He’d wonder why they hadn’t been training him properly. He could potentially turn on Changbin and Jisung for not following orders. If Hyunjin was too far from his expectations, what would he do to them? People in high places were not people that they should be testing the patience of. Hyunjin needed to understand this, for his sake and theirs.

“Fine,” Hyunjin whispered, the bitterness, the frustration, it was all vivid in his voice. “But if I get the chance to get him back for this, I’m going to.” Changbin didn’t like that, but he didn’t want to argue anymore. He stood and turned to leave, pausing in the doorway before shaking his head and continuing out.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Woojin felt numb as he climbed into the passenger seat of Chan’s patrol car. He’d cried long and hard, the weight of the situation finally tipping him over the edge. Chan had been there to rub his back and whisper hopeful reminders for what felt like hours, and after he pulled himself together, they were back to work.

It was at the weird midpoint between late and early, three in the morning now, and Woojin figured the exhaustion was only hitting this hard because he’d cried all of his energy out. Chan was behind the car, arranging Hyunjin’s bulky computer in between other equipment in the trunk, finally slamming the door closed and making his way to the driver seat. He hefted out a heavy sigh as he climbed in, turning to Woojin with a soft, sympathetic smile.

“Hey, after we drop off the computer, do you want to get some food?” Chan offered. “It’s been a bit since we’ve eaten last and it’s not like we can do much until we get the results back from the tech department. Do you think you’d be able to stomach something if we went to that twenty-four hour cafe up the road from the station?”

Woojin didn’t really know. He felt nauseous, but that had been persistent since finding out that Hyunjin was missing and he hadn’t actually thrown up from it. The nausea could also be from not having eaten in so long, even though he didn’t feel hungry in the slightest. But food was important, Hyunjin would want him eating, and food meant energy which he’d need for the next few days. “I think I can eat,” he said blankly, and Chan smiled, nodding quickly.

“Mkay.”

The drive to the station was quiet, the road noise lulling Woojin to sleep for a few minutes before they came to a stop. Chan carried the computer delicately up to the elevator, which took them to the correct floor where the tech department was. Woojin unlocked the doors and they left the computer on an empty desk with a note written from Woojin explaining why it was there and what they wanted to be done with it. It was quick, but it still left a hole in Woojin’s already shredded heart, seeing Hyunjin’s computer being used as evidence.

The drive to the restaurant was short, and they went in, getting seated quickly as the only customers currently in the joint. The young omega hostess seemed just as exhausted as they were, dropping the menus to the table and muttering that she’d be back in a few minutes. It left them fully alone, which was nice. They’d be able to talk about things without having to worry about being overheard by another customer or employee.

“What Seungmin told us is definitely a lead on where he might’ve gone,” Chan said. It was obvious that he was trying to encourage Woojin, but it wasn’t working.

“It’s a lead that tells me that he’s in danger,” Woojin said quietly, rubbing his tired eyes. “If this truly is a part of the case, he’s either in danger or-”

“Hey, hey, don’t think like that,” Chan hurried. “Let’s talk about good things. Tell me… hm… Tell me about some good memories you have with him.”

“What..?” Woojin asked, but started to think. Good memories with Hyunjin… He had so many that it was hard to think of just one, but honestly it was too difficult to think of any when all he could direct his attention towards was that his little brother was in danger somewhere, or worst case, dead. He bowed his head, the sadness spreading across his face once more. Chan frowned.

“Woojin, you can’t quit now. You have to keep your moral up. He’s going to be okay.”

It didn’t sound honest. It sounded like the same hopeful ray of sunshine that Chan always was. How many families had Chan said ‘It’ll be okay’ to just for them to find out that it wouldn’t be? Would Woojin be like those people? This was empty comfort, and it wasn’t helping in the slightest. Woojin sighed, finally picking one memory out of the few he could conjure up.

“When he was little, like seven maybe, he got stuck in a tree in our backyard,” Woojin started, Chan nodded with a soft expression on his face. Woojin sucked in a breath and continued. “Seungmin ran to find me and we went over to the tree. Hyunjin was crying so hard he couldn’t even tell me how he’d made it so far up there. I wasn’t sure if even I could climb that high to get him down.” Woojin frowned, remembering back to that day. Hyunjin had always been small, but had longer limbs and good flexibility that had screwed him over that day.

“I told him to jump down, that I’d catch him. He refused. So I tried to climb up, but I was too heavy, I was going to break a branch and fall.”

“What did you do?” Chan asked.

Woojin smiled faintly. “I told him to jump, to pretend like he could fly and just jump down towards me. He wouldn’t do it until I told him that. ‘I’ll catch you, Jinnie. Fly down here and I’ll catch you.’”

“He really jumped? How high up was he anyway?”

“At least a story up. It was terrifying for me as well. If I couldn’t catch him he’d probably have gotten really hurt. But after I said that, he did it. He jumped. I had to run like mad to get under where he was falling towards, but I did it. He took me out on the way down, but we both made it out with just some scrapes. I don’t know why I thought of that one, it’s not something necessarily happy or anything, but-”

“You were there for him,” Chan said gently. “You’ve always been there for him. And you’ll be there for him this time too.” Woojin nodded quietly. He felt a little better. “Can I tell another one? Another story about him? It’s helping a little,” he asked. Chan smiled and nodded, and Woojin kept on until the server remembered that they existed and they remembered that they were getting food. The story about Hyunjin’s first failing grades, how Woojin had tutored him up to the straight A student that he was now. The story about Hyunjin turning down an omega and them sitting on the couch talking about what dating was like. Chan listened and Woojin was grateful, because for the first time in days, he felt like he could smile.

---------------------------------------------------

Before the sun was more than just a sliver over the horizon, Changbin woke up to Felix shaking him. The omega’s eyes were wide and fearful, and Changbin shot up to find out why before he heard it. Someone was knocking at the door downstairs. He pulled his knife out from under the pillow, grabbed his gun from the nightstand, and shoved the blankets off. “Lock the door behind me,” he whispered to Felix. “Whatever you hear, don’t come out.”

Felix frowned but nodded, and Changbin left the room, hesitating until he heard the click of the door locking behind him. He raised his gun towards a shadow he saw down the hall, lowering it immediately upon recognizing Jisung’s silhouette shuffling silently down the stairs towards the door. “Behind you, Ji,” Changbin whispered. The younger nodded, holding up his gun to show that he had one.

It was too early for Minho, or so they thought, but when Changbin looked through the peephole of the door, the man was standing there looking very much awake for how it was still almost completely dark outside. Changbin narrowed his eyes. He was too tired for this shit, these mind games.

He threw open the door. Sure enough, just out of sight of the peephole, were the two armed guards that Minho had brought the first time. One had a camera hanging from a strap around his neck. The other had a satchel on his side.

“It’s too fucking early for this,” Changbin said immediately upon throwing open the door, Jisung standing next to him with narrowed eyes. “Couldn’t you have come at a decent time?”

“Sorry to interrupt your beauty sleep, Changbin, but I’m a busy man. I need to make sure that he’s properly trained now so that I don’t waste my day later in case he isn’t. I’m coming in.” Changbin could hear Jisung scoff behind him, but they both moved aside for the man to pace into the living room, his guards following. It was too early and they were unprepared. Hyunjin was still in bed, probably still asleep. This wasn’t good.

“Where is he?” Minho asked, looking around the stuffy living room. Their dishes were still in the sink from their meal last night, and Felix’s jacket was laying on the couch. They hadn’t expected it to be this early at all. Changbin hated leaving personal items out when a client came. He only sighed, starting up the stairs. “You told us to make him comfortable so we gave him a bed. He’s probably sleeping right now. It really would be better if you came back later-”

“I’ll wait here. Go put him back into that room you had him in before. Don’t lock him in the chair, just leave him in the room unbound,” Minho said, dead serious, already sitting down on the couch beside Felix’s jacket. Changbin and Jisung locked eyes, nervousness creeping into both of their chests. Minho wanted Hyunjin to be unbound…? Why?

 

“Go tell Felix through the door what’s going on,” Changbin started. “I’ll deal with Hyunjin.” Jisung nodded and followed Changbin up the stairs, stopping at the first door on the right while Changbin continued to the second to last door. He didn’t knock before pushing the door open, and sure enough, Hyunjin was fast asleep.

It sent tension through his chest, waking Hyunjin up this early on this little sleep just to tell him that Minho was here. But he had to do it, and he likely had to do it quickly as to not push the rich man’s patience. He shook Hyunjin’s shoulders until the alpha was blinking awake, locking eyes with Changbin moments after waking. The anxiety was vivid, his chest began to rise and fall rapidly. Changbin whispered softly, “Hyunjin, it’ll be okay. Don’t panic and don’t do anything stupid. We’re going to be in the room with you, it’ll be okay.”

Hyunjin nodded shakily, and Changbin helped him shift in the proper position to unchain him from the bed. Once the chain was loose, Changbin unlatched his handcuffs. As his hands fell free, Hyunjin blinked in surprise at the elder, who could only frown at him. Something felt wrong about this. “It’s what Minho requested,” he said quietly, and Hyunjin seemed to be nervous about that as well. Changbin took Hyunjin’s arm and draped it over his own shoulder, helping the slightly taller male limp out of the room and down the hall. When Hyunjin realized where they were going, he froze.

“No, not there again,” he whispered hoarsely.

Changbin sighed. They couldn’t have him being disobedient like this, not now. “Hyunjin, come on-”

“Don’t do this, please don’t do this, Changbin,” Hyunjin whimpered.

Changbin’s heart skipped a beat, anxiety flooded through his chest before it was replaced with anger. And suddenly he was pressing Hyunjin up against the wall.

“Who the fuck told you that name?” he growled.

Hyunjin seemed to realize how badly he’d fucked up, his eyes wide as he began to say, “I’m sorry, I’m-”

But Changbin wasn’t having it. He’d taken pity on this alpha because of his situation, but he hadn’t known Hyunjin was hiding Changbin’s secret the entire time. Who had given him away? Jisung? Felix? He was mad at all of them, but especially Hyunjin. He didn’t want anyone fucking knowing anything about him, especially his hits. And Hyunjin was just a hit. He was stupid to have gotten so close that something like this would happen.

He grabbed Hyunjin by the collar of the shirt and began to march him down the hall, the younger limping hurriedly along with him until they reached the room, where he began to drag his feet. “Please Changbin, don’t put me in that chair again,” Hyunjin pleaded. Changbin didn’t want to hear it. He shoved Hyunjin into the dark room, and Hyunjin fell to the floor, quickly scrambling to stand. Changbin didn’t care about his previous promise. He didn’t want to see Hyunjin again, he didn’t want to remember how kind he’d been to him this entire time. He’d let his guard down and now a hit knew his name. He shouldn’t have gotten so fucking weak.

He slammed the door closed and left Hyunjin in the dark, locking the door behind him. Hyunjin was banging on the wood, yelling, pleading, but Changbin walked away, back down the stairs. He looked to Minho with tired eyes. The elder was on the phone, but his call finished up within seconds of Changbin’s return. Minho slowly grinned at the dead expression on the younger’s face.

“Did you do as I asked?”

Changbin was tired. Contrary to how he’d felt hours ago, he was ready for Hyunjin to be gone. It felt wrong in his chest, letting this happen, but he couldn’t let his morals get in the way of their safety as a group.

“Yes.”

As Minho stood and made his way up the stairs, guards following, Changbin fell into the couch. He picked up Felix’s jacket and held it between his hands, staring down at it. Had Felix or Jisung given him away? They knew how important his identity was to him, and yet Hyunjin had found out somehow. He stayed on the couch, ignoring how he could barely hear Hyunjin yelling from upstairs.

Chapter Text

“Don’t do this,” Hyunjin pleaded, collapsing against the door as his fucked up foot couldn’t support his weight for longer than a minute. Changbin wasn’t coming back, and that scared him. Was he going to be left alone with Minho after all? He’d fucked up, he really did. Felix had told him to never let Changbin know that he knew his name but it had slipped and now it was too late.

The door handle turned, but the lock held it shut. There was some talking outside of the room, and Hyunjin could make out Minho’s voice. His heart was pounding, he crawled backwards away from the door until his back was hitting the chair bolted down in the center of the room. Wait… his hands were free. His eyes shot down to the floor, where the weapons from the day he’d arrived were still scattered. Immediately he grabbed the gun, holding it up to the door. His hands were trembling as he held it like Woojin had taught him years ago. He didn’t remember how to turn the safety off. He could only hope that it was already disengaged.

The door rattled before swinging open, and the first person to walk in, and freeze in the doorway, was Jisung. The alpha stared at Hyunjin in surprise before frowning, taking a few slow, careful steps forward. “Hyunjin…”

“Get away!” Hyunjin growled. Beside him as well was the knife. He’d be okay, he had to be. He could see someone moving behind Jisung, but Jisung held out his hand to stop the person. “He found a gun,” he said in warning, but the person simply pushed past Jisung’s hand. Minho’s cold eyes, his daunting smile, Hyunjin found his hands trembling so badly that he didn’t know if he could aim properly.

“Hyunjin, this is a strange way to meet again,” Minho cooed softly. “It seems like you’re a little more reckless than I’d hoped you’d be by now.”

“Get away from me,” he said again, voice shaking. If he killed them, he could get away. If he killed everyone, he could escape without having to run. If he just… He already knew that he couldn’t physically bring himself to do it, but what if he had to? Was Minho planning on killing him? He might have to act first. His heart was pounding in his chest, his breaths coming out rapid. He wouldn’t let them near him.

Immediately Minho’s guards shoved past Jisung and stepped in front of their leader, who allowed them to act as a shield for him. One stayed with Minho while the other dauntlessly marched forward, and in his fear, without thinking, Hyunjin pulled the trigger.

A click, nothing more. His eyes widened both at what he almost did and what the outcome was. He’d almost killed someone just now, without thinking, he’d almost murdered someone. And everyone in the room knew it from that tiny little click. The guard’s eyes narrowed and he grunted, stepping forward and grabbing Hyunjin’s wrists, twisting them both until he was crying out and releasing the gun. The man took it and threw it aside, grabbing the knife and the small hammer that were still on the floor into one hand and the empty syringe in the other. Hyunjin was left with nothing to defend himself with, and as the guard stepped away, Minho stepped forward.

“That was reckless, Hyunjin,” he said sternly, his smile having faded from his face. “It’s a shame. I really hoped you’d be submissive by now, but that stunt proved otherwise. Seems like I paid the wrong people to capture you.” He glanced over to Jisung, who remained stoic and quiet, though there was something burning behind his eyes that Hyunjin couldn’t comprehend in the moment. Minho then knelt in front of Hyunjin, who backed up further until his back was pressing into the legs of the chair. “Why did you try to fight? Did you really think you could escape? Did you really think that someone like you would have the balls to kill a man? And what would it have done? You can’t kill me, Hyunjin. That’s the first lesson you need to know.”

It was intimidation. Woojin taught him about this, but it still scared him enough that he couldn’t untwist his tongue to reply. Minho was in his face and he couldn’t back away any further. What the hell was he going to do…?!

“The second lesson is that you should listen to everything that I tell you to do. Let’s practice. Hyunjin, I want you to stand up. Nice and simple.”

Hyunjin swallowed. Everything in him told him to reject the order. He was a proud alpha and Minho was his enemy at this point, but Changbin’s words were vivid in his mind, and slowly, shakily, he stood, balancing mostly on the foot that could support him. Minho nodded, muttering, “Good. Stay standing.”

Minho then began to pace. Hyunjin steadied himself on his good leg, shaking less because of his lack of balance and more from the fear of the man in front of him. Everyone had said that Minho would hurt him today. What was going to happen…?

“Hyunjin, let me give you a rundown of what I have planned for you,” Minho said. Hyunjin’s eyes flickered past Minho for a second and locked with Jisung’s, who immediately looked away. He was standing close to the door. Changbin still wasn’t back, and Hyunjin doubted with a panicked heart that he was going to come at all despite his promise.

“First, I’m going to use you. I’m going to use you and record every second of it. I might even have others use you if I feel up to it, because in the end, I own you now.” Hyunjin shuddered, biting into his lip. Minho continued, “Then, when I get bored with you, I’m going to sell you off. Isn’t that nice of me? Not planning to just kill you when I’m done with you? Say ‘Thank you, Minho’ if you think that’s nice.”

He stayed quiet. He didn’t think it was nice at all and he wasn’t about to pretend like he did, but when the man’s eyes narrowed, Hyunjin gave in. “Th… Thank you, Minho.” He felt utterly humiliated, but the humiliation was nothing in comparison to the worry. He wanted to be safe above all else, and he knew he was walking on thin ice. Minho paused in his pacing, glancing up to Hyunjin with a hum.

“The problem is, I have to decide where to sell you to. You see, alphas are usually sold to be underground fighters, gladiator style, have you heard of that?” Yes, he’d heard of it, Woojin mentioned it a few times. Alphas that went missing sometimes turned up dead in alleyways, beaten to a pulp with scars that indicated that they’d been fighting for a long time. Hyunjin’s chest knotted at the thought of himself being one of those people. He didn’t know how to hold himself in a fight, before being kidnapped he’d never had to fight anyone before. Minho continued on, “But of course, you’re a little fragile for an alpha. It’s likely that someone would want to fuck you. Maybe some kinky bastards would be into it. I could sell you off for those means too, you know, get a pretty penny for an alpha trained to be fucked like a bitch.”

Jisung bowed his head, squeezing his eyes shut, the motion so quick that Hyunjin focused on it for a second. His attention didn’t last long though. His head was spinning with what Minho was saying to him. He’d spent so many days trying not to think of what could happen to him after he was taken, having it all shoved into his face like this made him feel physically sick. He shifted his weight subconsciously and the pain shot through his leg, sending him collapsing to the floor. Minho tsked.

“I told you to stay standing. You can’t even obey something like that?”

Hyunjin shook his head quickly, it wasn’t like that, it was a mistake, it was just-

Minho took a step forward, and another voice was permeating the tension of the room.

“His foot’s hurt pretty badly, cut him some slack.”

Jisung. Hyunjin’s eyes widened and Minho stalled, turning to face the other alpha who was still standing beside the door, arms crossed. Minho cocked an eyebrow, chuckling under his breath, “Oh, that explains a lot. I wondered how such stoic and determined hitmen could have done such a shitty job training a citizen, but it seems like my chosen hitmen fell for their hit.”

Jisung’s eyes narrowed, and Hyunjin started to back up while Minho was distracted. The table behind him, there were more weapons on the table. If he could get another knife or anything along those lines and hide it up the loose sleeves of his shirt, or behind his back, he might be able to get a surprise hit in on Minho.

“It’s not falling for him, Minho, it’s being rational,” Jisung replied irritably. “You can’t expect someone who’s injured to stay standing on their injury for longer than a few minutes, it’s common sense. Of course he wouldn’t be able to obey something like that, you’re just looking for a reason to punish him and be pissed at us.”

“Oh, no, I’ve found a better reason for both of those things. Look at what puppy’s doing now,” Minho said, and all eyes turned back to Hyunjin, who froze in his tracks, only a foot away from the table of equipment. Minho’s eyes then flickered away, and slowly he smiled. “Actually, Jinnie, go ahead and grab something. Whatever you want from that table. You have three seconds.”

He then turned to his men. “Go teach him why he shouldn’t think fighting is a good idea here.”

And Hyunjin’s heart froze in his chest as the two large guards began to march towards him. He scrambled up to the table, searching for whatever could be of the most use, but in his panic he could barely focus. He ended up grabbing for the last knife, serrated edge and long blade seeming the best choice that he could make in the short amount of time that he had. He whipped around and the first man was right in front of him. And all morals aside, adrenaline pulsing, Hyunjin swiped the blade towards the man’s neck…

Only to feel his back hit the table, hard. He gasped as a knee was slammed into his stomach, almost dropping the knife entirely as his entire body collapsed to the floor. A harsh kick was delivered to his side, sending him sliding across the floor away from the weapons. Another kick, then another. His hand was too loose around the hilt of the knife, and everytime he gathered the strength to move his arm, he was being kicked around again. Pounded back and forth like a ragdoll, he felt his vision blurring, every nerve in his stomach and chest fogging up with thick, throbbing pain. One of the kicks was delivered to his head, and accident or not, his vision went black for enough seconds for him to have been kicked three more times.

“Hey, cut it out, he didn’t even do anything!” he heard Jisung snap.

Minho’s voice was distant. “He disobeyed me. This is a lesson, a lesson that you should’ve taught him already. If it weren’t for you being soft on him, this wouldn’t be happening.”

Hyunjin whimpered as the next kick came. He wanted to be unconscious, he wanted to be gone, he almost wanted to be dead for just a second before remembering that he was terrified of it, but fuck his entire body hurt so badly and it wasn’t stopping.

It felt like eternity before Minho was calling his men back. Hyunjin curled up into himself on the cold floor, his entire body throbbing, the taste of blood wet in his mouth. He didn’t care what he looked like right now. He wanted to fade into the unconsciousness creeping at the corners of his vision, but he was too afraid of what was to come next. Footsteps approached, but he didn’t have the energy to look up at who was coming closer.

It was Minho’s voice when that person finally spoke.

“Hyunjin, does it hurt?” he asked. Hyunjin stayed still and quiet. If he pretended like he was unconscious, maybe he’d be left alone.

Minho sighed before jabbing his hand into one of the forming bruises on Hyunjin’s side. Hyunjin yelped loudly, writhing to get away, beginning to crawl before Minho grabbed the scruff of his shirt and pulled him back. “I asked you a question.”

“It hurts,” he whispered, his voice rough and hoarse. Minho nodded.

“Don’t you feel bad? Feel bad for tricking all of those people? That’s why you’re here you know. You did it to yourself.” It felt scripted, and when Hyunjin looked up he saw one of the men who had previously been kicking him around holding a camera, focusing it right at him. He felt so pathetic but he couldn’t bring up the strength to fight back any longer. He did do this to himself. If he’d just played it safe, or not played at all, he wouldn’t be here. If he’d used his brain at all he wouldn’t have gotten himself into this horrible situation.

“I’m sorry,” he whispered. Jisung bowed his head, but Hyunjin barely noticed it. “I’m really sorry.” As if it would get him out of this. He knew that it wouldn’t, but as he began to cry, he whispered over and over, “I’m sorry, please, I’m sorry.”

Minho stroked his hair softly, a gross imitation of caring, before he stood and left Hyunjin lying weakly on the floor. “I’m done here. I’ll be back tomorrow night. Bandage him up until then. I don’t have the medical supplies or honestly the care to do it myself or I’d take him now.”

Jisung nodded, and Minho escorted himself and his guards out of the room. Hyunjin trembled as the pain, the fear, the humiliation, all of it coalesced into something nauseating. A few minutes after Minho had left, after Hyunjin barely heard the front door slamming, he was being pulled into warm arms. He didn’t care that it was Jisung picking him up. He didn’t care who it was. He held back the sobs but couldn’t stop the flow of tears as his bruised body was pressed against every time he was shifted. Jisung was talking, someone was talking back, but finally Hyunjin’s consciousness was fading. He begged it to take him, and Hyunjin fell into a dreamless sleep.

Chapter Text

Jisung made his way slowly, carefully, down the hall. Hyunjin was curled up in his arms, eyes squeezed shut, a bruise already forming on his cheek. Jisung didn’t want to know what his chest and stomach would end up looking like within a few hours after a beating like that. It was cruel, what Minho did, but Jisung couldn’t have prevented it from happening. He tried not to feel guilty, tried not to feel anything, as he made his way back to the room Hyunjin had been sleeping in for the past few days.

He didn’t bother with the handcuffs. He would lock the door behind him after leaving so that Hyunjin couldn’t somehow get out, but it seemed pretty apparent that he would be bedridden for his last day with them. The captive groaned as Jisung layed him down over the blankets. Conflict swept through Jisung’s stomach.

He needed to assess the damage done, but if Hyunjin woke up to him taking his shirt off, it wouldn’t be good. Really he needed Felix or Changbin here. Jisung turned to go find one of them and almost lept into the ceiling when Felix was already standing silently in the doorway.

“Lix, be louder, you scared the shit out of me,” he gasped. But Felix’s eyes were lost and he stood unhearing, staring at Hyunjin’s unconscious form.

“Felix,” Jisung started, but Felix ignored him, slowly approaching the bed.

“Minho did this…?” the omega asked quietly, bringing a shaky hand down to stroke through Hyunjin’s hair, pushing it away from his cheek that was still bright red.

“His guards did it under his orders,” Jisung muttered. “He’s going to be back tomorrow night to take Hyunjin off to… wherever the hell he’s taking him.”

Felix’s eyes widened, then softed, an exhaustion behind them that Jisung could relate to strongly. The guilt he was trying not to feel kept creeping back. It wasn’t like he could do anything for Hyunjin, not now that Minho had made up his mind about when to take him. All they could do was what they were told to do, treat Hyunjin and maybe give him a decent meal before…

He didn’t even know. Where Hyunjin would be going after this was a mystery. Jisung kept asking himself why he cared, but it boiled down to the fact that Hyunjin was just different from other hits. He didn’t do anything wrong enough to deserve the pain he was going through, to deserve being kidnapped in the first place. Jisung’s mind kept whispering that if they hadn’t taken him, if they’d ignored Minho’s initial message, Hyunjin would be safe at home with his brother. But that wasn’t true. If it weren’t for him being here, Hyunjin would have likely been killed by someone else. It didn’t make him feel any better, bartering with himself between the current situation or the alternative. If they hadn’t kidnapped Hyunjin, he’d be dead. What happens to Hyunjin after this isn’t his fault, it’s Minho’s. Jisung figured he’d repeat it in his head until he believed it.

“Can you treat him?” Jisung asked tiredly. “The first aid kit’s in the kitchen, I can go grab it.”

Felix frowned before slowly lifting up Hyunjin’s shirt, struggling a little as the alpha’s weight was holding it down. He sucked in a breath. “This… I don’t think this can be treated with a first aid kit,” Felix breathed.

Jisung swallowed at the sight of the damage. It was like Hyunjin’s entire side and stomach had been exposed to boiling water, the skin was so red. They would have to bandage his entire torso to cover it, would likely have to go through an entire bottle of ointment to reduce the swelling and pain.

Felix’s voice shook. “If he has a broken rib or something, this could be really serious. He might need to go to the hospital.”

That wasn’t an option and they both knew it. Jisung hurriedly replied, “He didn’t scream at all when they were kicking him around, I think he would’ve been in a lot more pain if something was broken… right?”

Felix glanced down weakly. “Changbin would know. Where’s Changbin?”

Jisung frowned. He hadn’t seen Changbin in what felt like hours, which was weird because he’d figured the elder would’ve wanted to be there supervising Minho’s interaction with Hyunjin. Even now, didn’t Changbin care about knowing when Hyunjin would be taken?

“I’ll go get the first aid kit. It’s all we have, so it’ll have to do. He can’t go to the hospital, Lix, you know that’s not an option. I’ll go find Changbin on my way to get it.”

Felix nodded. He never pulled his eyes away from Hyunjin’s broken form, and when Jisung turned back to look in from the hall, he could see a gloss in Felix’s eyes that hadn’t been there before he’d walked out.

----------------------------------------------------------------

He heard Jisung coming down the stairs, he knew he’d be questioned. Changbin still didn’t make an effort to move from his spot at the kitchen table, taking a long sip of coffee and kind of wishing that it was something alcoholic. Minho had said a halfhearted bye on the way out, relayed that Hyunjin would need medical treatment and that he’d be back tomorrow. As much as it was eating away at him, the burden of knowing that Hyunjin had to be pretty badly hurt from the encounter, Changbin still refused to go check on him. Just a hit. Hyunjin was just another hit, and if Minho was paying them to treat him then they would but that was it. Felix could handle it as long as it wasn’t too bad.

Jisung reached the bottom step, indicated by the soft creak of the floorboards under the carpet sinking under his weight. He heard the younger alpha sigh upon seeing him, but didn’t even look up. How the tables had turned, that now Jisung would be the one judging him for not caring about Hyunjin. Changbin regretted convincing Jisung that Hyunjin was worth worrying about. He’d been blind, ignorant, but he knew better now. Trusting a hit would only lead to danger, trusting anyone outside of the three of them was too risky to do.

“He’s really messed up,” Jisung said solemnly. Changbin shrugged, took another sip. Jisung made way to the kitchen, irritation blooming in his eyes as he passed Changbin to open one of the cabinets behind him, grabbing the first aid kit from the top shelf. “What, did something happen that I don’t know about?” Jisung asked with a sigh.

“Felix can take care of it. He’ll be off our hands tomorrow, so it’s not really our problem anymore.”

Jisung turned around, the irritation having faded into downright confusion. “You were okay with him literally three hours ago,” he said questioningly. “Did Minho say something to you?”

“Did you tell Hyunjin my name?” Changbin asked bluntly. Jisung blinked.

“Why the hell would I do that?”

The elder sighed. “Because he knew it. Somehow, he knew my name, along with whatever else you or me or Felix have entrusted him with. To clarify, this kid, who’s about to be going to one of the richest, most dangerous people we’ve ever met, potentially knows enough about us already to get us in big trouble.”

Jisung bowed his head, staring down at the bulky kit in his hands. “I don’t think Hyunjin would just tell Minho whatever he knows about us. Especially after today. Minho literally tore into him. I think Hyunjin’s going to be too scared of him to try something like that. Besides, we’ve been nice enough to him.”

“We’ve been nice enough to him recently, sure, but not before. If he holds a grudge against me, or especially against you, we’re fucked. That’s it. All because we pitied a hit,” Changbin muttered, finishing off his coffee and glancing towards the alcohol cabinet that usually was only frequented by Jisung.

Jisung processed the words before nodding slowly. “I guess so but... I don’t know. Lix wanted your help patching him up. We can’t tell if his ribs are broken or not, I don’t know the right way to check.”

Changbin’s eyes dulled, a sadness rippling through his gaze. “That bad, huh?”

“Those two big guys that he came in and left with were literally kicking him back and forth for ten minutes. Normally I don’t give a shit about that sort of thing, but for some reason it was just…” Jisung trailed off, shaking his head. “It feels wrong. Hyunjin is innocent. Sure, him knowing stuff about us can be dangerous, but he never did anything to deserve getting the shit beat out of him. I can’t worry about people who thrive off other people’s suffering, but Hyunjin isn’t like that.”

 

“Jisung,” Changbin said, pouring his sincerity into his voice. “You and Felix need to lose this attachment. I know, it’s easy to care for someone that you pity. But Hyunjin is going to Minho tomorrow no matter what we do or say. We need to think rationally here. I… I get it, okay. I’d love to be nice to him as well. But our safety comes before his, especially when he is guaranteed to not be safe. Just keep your distance.”

“I know,” Jisung mumbled. “I’m gonna go back up. He’s not awake, probably won’t be for a while, so if you could come help figure out how to patch him up that would be great.” The words were dripping with bitterness, but Changbin let them slip past him. Tomorrow. This would all settle by tomorrow, as sad as it was, as wrong as it felt. And then they could just move on.

Changbin slowly pushed away from the table, standing and placing his mug in the sink. He stared down at the ring of coffee left at the bottom for what felt like a good few minutes, processing. With a sigh he finally turned away, forcing his expression to harden again, trying to do the same with his heart as he made his way up the stairs towards Hyunjin.

He didn’t expect Felix to be crying when he pushed past the door. “Hey,” he whispered, rushing forward to pull the omega away from Hyunjin’s bedside and into his arms. Felix was trembling, Changbin could feel the wetness of his tears against his shirt. “What’s going on, Lix? What’s wrong?”

“I just feel so shitty about this,” Felix sobbed quietly. “He’s gonna get hurt so bad, he already has been, and I can’t do anything, I feel so hopeless.”

Changbin’s heart fell. Yes, they all three really needed to drop their attachment with Hyunjin before tomorrow came. Jisung was one thing, he’d get over it soon enough just like he did with everything else. He’d erase it, accept that he couldn’t do much, and move on. But Felix was soft, Felix hadn’t grown up in a world of pain and cruelty like they had, and this would be hard on him. Changbin stroked his hair softly as he held him, ignoring Jisung as the other alpha popped open the first aid kit and began shuffling through the contents.

“I know,” Changbin sighed. He knew so well how hard this was on Felix if it was somewhat hard on even himself. “But all we can do for him is treat his wounds and feed him before tomorrow. So let’s start with that, okay? I’ll look at his wounds now. Later today, could you make something for him to eat?”

Felix nodded shakily, and Changbin pulled away. The omega took a deep breath before moving to sit at the foot of Hyunjin’s bed, hugging himself lightly as he watched the sleeping alpha.

Changbin approached Hyunjin tentatively. He seemed completely unconscious, which was a little worrisome. Sometimes people shut down due to trauma, and that would be the best case scenario, but there was a higher chance that he’d been beaten into exhaustion. His shirt was pushed up, and Changbin could immediately tell that his stomach was going to be bruised to hell.

“You said they were kicking him?” he asked Jisung, who nodded solemnly. He continued to inspect, before noticing that Hyunjin’s cheek from ear to jawline was beginning to darken. “Did they kick him in the face?”

“It was hard to see him from the angle I was at, what with Minho and one of those assholes in the way. His face looks like it got kicked.”

“Depending on how hard, he may have a concussion. We’ll know when he wakes up.” He then moved down to look closer at Hyunjin’s ribs. He moved his hand along them slowly, pressing in a few places. “They don’t feel broken,” he muttered before leaning over Hyunjin to check the other side.

“No, nothing’s broken,” he confirmed after a few minutes. Felix sighed in relief. Changbin glanced to Jisung. “But we still need to put something on the bruises before they fully form. Can you pass me the green tube in there? It’ll help with the swelling as well.” Jisung nodded, digging until he found what Changbin had requested and passing it over.

It took an hour of Felix sitting Hyunjin up and Changbin applying the paste and wrapping around the wounds. Hyunjin had stayed unconscious the entire time, and Changbin ignored the worry sprouting inside. After a full hour of quiet whispers, Felix’s fears, Changbin’s comfort, and Jisung’s silence, they were laying Hyunjin back down.

His chest would be okay without treatment, but Changbin had applied the bruise cream almost over Hyunjin’s entire stomach, especially his sides, some on his back. He’d wrapped over it with a soft fabric, then wrapped over that with gauze. As uncomfortable as it would be for Hyunjin when he woke up, the compression would be helpful.

He was about to leave when Felix sucked in a breath. Turning, he noted that Hyunjin was blinking awake. He hesitated.

Hyunjin mumbled something that sounded like complete gibberish, and when Felix asked him to repeat it, he mumbled it again.

“Hyunjin, I don’t know what you’re asking…” Felix whispered, his voice shaking again.

“-want Woojin,” Hyunjin slowly whispered. “Where’s Woojin...?”

Felix trembled. Changbin’s heart fell, and to prevent himself from growing attached, he walked out of the room. One day, and he wouldn’t be their problem anymore. Just one day.

Chapter Text

Woojin was rushing to the station, going just a little over the speed limit. The tech department had managed to crack into Hyunjin’s computer, as well as into his apparent accounts on the obscure social-mingling website that was heavily frequented on the browser. This was a huge lead. They could check his posts, his messages, everything to figure out the criminal and the motive.

Chan had dropped him off at his house last night, and Woojin had spent the entire night looking at Hyunjin’s baby pictures that his mother had scrapbooked years ago. Baby Hyunjin with ice cream all over his face, baby Hyunjin on his birthdays. He was always such a happy child, even in a family run by a stoic, dominant man. It both lifted and sunk Woojin’s heart remembering back when now he didn’t even know if he’d ever make new memories with Hyunjin. What if saying goodbye to him before his walk to school was the last thing he’d ever have to cherish with his little brother? No, Chan was right, he had to be positive. They had a lead, and he was about to go find out everything that he could about it.

There wasn’t a lot of traffic this early, the sun hadn’t even fully risen yet, and Woojin was grateful for it. He’d be reprimanded if the chief found out that he was speeding, but he was using his own car instead of the patrol car so it wasn’t likely. He just hoped another officer wouldn’t pull him over.

He was lost in thought, thinking back to the last time he saw Hyunjin. He’d have to call his mother and update her if this lead went anywhere. He’d been purposefully avoiding her now frequent worried texts because he didn’t have the heart to tell her that nothing had been found. But this… this could be something huge.

The screech of tires is what first threw him off, as the car behind him whipped into the lane beside him, nearly spinning off the road in doing so. He wished he was in his patrol car to turn on sirens. A drunk driver potentially? At four-thirty in the morning, it was still possible. He couldn’t see into their windows. He decided that he would write their license plate number down when they got in front of him, but they kept driving right at his side. It was strange, but he had places to be, so he tried to drive as carefully beside the person as possible.

He’d been looking away from the car beside him when it happened. There was a loud popping noise, and almost immediately following, a crack. He felt powdered pieces of glass spray over his shoulder before the racing pain exploded through his arm. He looked away from the road. There was a small hole pierced through his side window, and the reckless car was rolling their window up. He got a peek of black hair before the tinted windows were blocking his view of them again, but he could hardly focus on that. He’d been shot. Holding his breath, biting into his lip, whatever he could do to try and stay focused, he kept driving. The person beside him had shot him, and if he pulled over, they might finish the job. His arm was pulsing with white hot pain, he could feel the trickling of blood running down from the wound. Chan. He’d call Chan.

He shakily let go of the steering wheel for the second that it took to press the button on his radio that would connect to his phone and dial the number automatically. It was ringing when suddenly his car was slammed sideways from the road. The other car was now bashing into his, and it was all he could do to stay on the road with only one hand able to steer and the pain almost blinding him. Fuck, it hurt so badly, but he had to keep going or he’d be in much more danger than this.

“Woojin? You okay? It's kind of early.”

Another slam, his car began to spin. He forgot about the call entirely and his heart jumped into his throat as his hand slipped from the wheel for just a second too long. Two of his wheels had slipped over the side of the road, and his entire car was tilting towards the ditch there. One more slam from the car beside him, and he was rolling.

He couldn’t begin to focus on what to do, or what was happening. Everything in his car including himself was being thrown around, his arm screamed in pain, Chan was panicking over the line, he was rolling towards a thick tree at an extremely fast pace. As his car slammed into the tree sideways, Woojin’s body jerked so hard that he knew he would’ve been thrown from the car if not for his seat belt. The airbags splayed out so fast that he didn’t know what had hit him. The force of the bag slamming into his face was what knocked him out, as the car came to a standstill, crumpled and wrecked.

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“He’s… He’s not here, Hyunjin. Do you remember where you are?” Felix asked softly, feeling tears forming again. This was so miserable, this entire situation. How was Hyunjin going to make it out okay?

Hyunjin blinked up at him, and Felix caught the moment that he recognized who he was talking to. The sadness swept over Hyunjin’s face like a wave, and he slowly nodded. Felix frowned, reaching a hand up to gently stroke through Hyunjin’s hair. “Are you in a lot of pain?” he asked next. Hyunjin nodded again.

“Everything hurts,” he whispered. It was entirely believable, and Felix stood to go grab some water before Jisung’s voice was breaking the quiet.

“I’ll go get ibuprofen. Stay here with him,” Jisung said halfheartedly. He was already walking out of the room by the time he’d finished the words. Felix bowed his head, pulling his hands away from Hyunjin to hold them together in his lap.

“I’m going to miss you,” Felix whispered. He knew it was wrong to say, when Hyunjin likely missed his old life already. But it was true. Caring for Hyunjin gave him purpose where he previously didn’t feel like he had any. Losing Hyunjin felt like a failure on his part, even though he knew he could do nothing to stop it.

Hyunjin stared down at the bandages around his stomach, the misery vastly apparent on his face. “He’s coming back tomorrow,” he said, seeming to ignore Felix’s words, and Felix tried not to be hurt by it.

“I know,” he whispered. “I’m so sorry, Hyunjin, if there was anything I could do to stop this I would do it. I’ve been there and I understand, and I’m so sorry.”

Jisung came back in, walking slowly to the side of the bed. “I brought medicine and some water, you should probably take a few of these,” he said, and Hyunjin nodded, not looking up to acknowledge Jisung at all. He held out his hand shakily for the pills, and Jisung dumped three of them there. Hyunjin took the water with a weak grip and swallowed the pills down, followed it with the water. His eyes were exhausted in more ways than one, and Felix almost agreed with Changbin’s decision to distance himself. This hurt too much to watch, but Felix refused to leave Hyunjin alone in his last day of safety before… Fuck, he just hoped Hyunjin’s story had a decent ending like his own did.

“Can I sleep?” Hyunjin whispered.

Felix nodded quickly, but Jisung’s voice was raw when he said, “Do you really want to sleep your last day away? You’d rather sleep than shower or eat?”

“Jisung…” Felix mumbled but Hyunjin slid his gaze up to watch Jisung quietly, not replying to his question. Jisung shook his head with a sigh before turning and hurrying out of the room. Felix frowned, assuring, “He’s just like that when he’s worried. Hyunjin, if you want to sleep then sleep.”

Hyunjin nodded before sliding down to lay in the blankets. Felix stayed with him until he passed out, and as per ordered, locked the door behind him when he left.

Chapter Text

Jisung could barely sleep that night, nodding off only to wake up a few hours later feeling just as exhausted as before. By the time the sun rose, he was kicking off the blankets feeling like he didn’t sleep at all. The bathroom mirror showed the bags under his eyes, and he tried to at least smooth out his hair before brushing his teeth and making his way downstairs. The kitchen was empty, and he wasn’t sure if he cherished the silence or wished that someone else would wake up. It was only seven in the morning, so it wasn’t likely that anyone would come down.

There was a restlessness in his stomach, and he didn’t figure coffee would help with it but he began to brew some anyway, wishing he could down something stronger but knowing that he needed to be at the top of his game by the time Minho showed up that night. He didn’t trust Minho in the slightest, the man made him feel sick. He was the epitome of everything that Jisung hated, and if Minho were to become one of their hits, Jisung figured that he would enjoy hurting the man with everything that he had in him.

But life rarely fell into place conveniently, and he was positive that after this exchange, he’d probably never see or hear from Minho again. It was bittersweet, the man made him uncomfortable, but never seeing Minho again likely meant never seeing Hyunjin again. He decided to stop asking himself why Hyunjin mattered to him since he could barely come up with a decent answer. It was a mix of things. Hyunjin was innocent, he didn’t deserve the punishment and Jisung felt obligated to make sure he was safe. Hyunjin was pretty. It was wrong, not a good reason to like someone, but after the first time they’d touched (he wanted to forget the second time entirely), Jisung couldn’t look past it. Lastly, Hyunjin was scared. There was a fear in his eyes that resembled the fear that Jisung felt years ago, and his stomach turned when he thought about it but he couldn’t help relating to it. There was more, he knew there was more, but more didn’t matter. Regardless of him caring, Hyunjin was going away for good tonight. It wouldn’t be a happy ending for him, and it wouldn’t be a happy ending for Jisung if he kept holding on.

The coffee pot beeped. Jisung felt numb as he paced across the kitchen and reached for the handle, staring down at it but not actually grabbing. Minutes passed. He wouldn’t ask himself what was wrong with him any longer. It made sense that he was like this, but fuck, he hated feeling so exhausted.

“You gonna actually drink that?”

Jisung flinched as the gruff voice from the bottom of the stairs echoed into the kitchen. He sighed, pulling his hand from the coffee pot and making way to the cabinet that had the real stuff, figuring he’d be sober by tonight anyway given that it was only morning. “No, take it,” he muttered, flicking open the door to the cabinet and reaching for the same bottle he’d been sipping at for the past week. It was running low, but maybe that was for the better. He didn’t have the energy to go to the store, and he needed to start managing his drinking anyway.

Changbin passed him, padding across the tile in his socks and grabbing a mug from the cabinet. “It’s tonight,” he said blankly.

“No shit,” Jisung sighed. Changbin frowned, turning to look at the younger, who had fallen into his usual seat at the table, setting the entire, near empty bottle in front of him.

“How are you feeling?” Changbin asked quietly, a low tone that could be mistaken for softness or hardness but really was a swirling mixture of both. Changbin treated Jisung like a little brother, he practically was one after this many years.

Jisung stared at the bottle. He tapped the table and watched the clear liquid ripple mindlessly. “About Minho coming here? Not good. I can’t wait for that asshole to disappear.”

“How are you feeling about Hyunjin?” Changbin rephrased. Jisung swallowed. He didn’t want to talk about it.

“Does it matter?” He asked. “Hyunjin will be gone by tonight. What does it matter what I feel about it? I can’t change it.”

Changbin shrugged, placing the coffee pot back into its place and sitting carefully in the seat opposing to Jisung, placing his coffee down on the table and staring at it as well. They both stared at their drinks in silence for what felt like minutes but likely was only a few seconds.

Jisung asked, “Are you gonna say it again this time? That we shouldn’t talk about him after he’s gone? That it’ll only hurt us?”

Again. It had happened before a few times now. Changbin had told Jisung not to talk about Felix after they’d given him away. It hurt the elder too much to hear Felix’s name after losing him, and Jisung had respected that. But there was a time before that, a person that Jisung wasn’t supposed to talk about because Changbin hated thinking of bad memories or things gone wrong. Maybe Jisung would pay that person a visit sometime soon.

Changbin stared down at his coffee with seemingly no intention to actually take a sip.

“Yes,” he said in the tone that was both soft and hard. “Because there’s no way to move on otherwise.”

 

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The bed creaked when he shifted. The silence was unbearable when his thoughts were racing so loudly. What was going to happen after tonight? What time was it anyway? The sky from the window was getting darker from the broad colors of the sunset. It was almost time.

Hyunjin sat up and brought his knees to his chest. His arms had grown used to being behind his back, his body had grown used to the physical inactivity. He did end up taking up Jisung’s offer to shower and eat that day, but the food wasn’t sitting right in his stomach, the anxiety swirling there like a storm. His wet hair was cold on the upper side of his neck. It was the only reason that he noticed how it had grown, how he would’ve gotten a haircut by now, how Woojin always went to get haircuts with him, and it made his chest thick with sadness to think about. The sadness broke the anxiety and he couldn’t tell which he preferred more when they were both miserable to sit in silence and brood on.

The door opening made the anxiety spike back up tenfold. He whipped his head, fully expecting to see Minho in the doorway, almost sighing in relief as it was only Jisung. He still was unsure about the other alpha, unsure if he could trust him or not, but anyone was better than Minho. Jisung had turned away while Hyunjin was showering, had fed him well, had stayed silent throughout both interactions entirely, and Hyunjin was completely okay with that.

Jisung stood in the doorway for a second, as if contemplating whether it was okay for him to come in. After a few seconds of rather awkward tension, he stepped over the threshold, but stayed relatively far from the bed. Hyunjin brought his knees down from his chest, tucking his legs under the blankets to the best of his ability without being able to use his hands, staring at the indent they made under the covers. He felt nauseous now, and he wasn’t sure if it was Jisung’s presence causing it or the bearing weight of his approaching future.

“He’s on his way,” Jisung said quietly. “He told Changbin a little bit ago.”

Hyunjin’s heart dropped into his stomach. He felt lightheaded. This was real.

Jisung frowned, real sympathy in his eyes that Hyunjin didn’t expect to see. The old Jisung would’ve mocked him right? What changed? The apology?

“Hey, it’ll…” It was like he was going to say something along the lines of ‘it’ll be okay’ before realizing that it wouldn’t be. Jisung chewed on his lip for a second before changing his words to, “I’ll… make you a promise.”

Hyunjin blinked tiredly. What kind of promise mattered now? Now that everything was coming to a terrible end?

Jisung swallowed, looked behind him, before stepping further into the room and shutting the door. The darkness swallowed them, but Hyunjin could still see Jisung’s outline, a safe distance away still, which was reassuring enough.

 

“I promise,” Jisung said under his breath, as if afraid that someone would hear, “That I won’t forget about you. And if I find an opportunity to help you, I’ll do it.”

It was empty. Hyunjin knew a real promise from a fake one, and this one wasn’t honest. Jisung could do nothing for him and they both knew it. What was the point in even pretending to try? He could tell that Jisung cared, but caring didn’t matter without action, not here, not now. He bowed his head. He wouldn’t start an argument now. He didn’t want to feel his heart racing with heated anger alongside all of the other terrible emotions stirring in his chest.

A car door slammed distantly from outside of the window, and they both tensed. Hyunjin’s chest began to thud with rapid heartbeats. It was time. Jisung walked quickly to the bed, kneeling beside it. From this distance, Hyunjin could make out details of his face even through the dark, the shadows under his eyes, the exhaustion.

“I won’t forget,” Jisung promised, his voice thick with urgency. “And I will be on your side. Don’t forget me either. If you can’t find anyone else to be strong through this for, think of your brother, think of your friend, and if nothing else, you can think of my promise too.”

It was weird, all of this coming from someone who did something so horrible just days ago. But Hyunjin felt a tension in his chest release just a little, tears threatening to spill from the anxiety rushing through his blood. “Okay,” he said with a trembling voice. “Okay.”

There was talking downstairs, they could hear the thud of footsteps trudging up to the second floor. “Remember,” Jisung whispered. Hyunjin promised that he would.

Chapter Text

“He’s in here.”

Changbin’s voice gave them only a second of preparation before the door flung back open and light poured into the room from the hallway. Hyunjin caught his breath as the shorter alpha walked in, followed by…

Minho. He knew it was going to happen, but still his heart was pounding at the sight of this man. Minho locked eyes with Hyunjin, but this time there was no smile, no faked sweetness to his expression. He looked almost bored, stepping aside so his bodyguards could come in as well. The room felt packed with six people. Jisung slowly stood from the bedside, shooting Hyunjin one last worried glance before stepping aside.

Hyunjin almost reached for him to come back. Jisung was the only one in this room who was on his side. He watched Changbin in a forced attempt to avoid looking at Minho, but Changbin was purposefully ignoring him, turning to Minho and asking, “Is this all that you want from us now? Our deal is done, right?”

“It’s done, though I’m hardly impressed with his training. I’ll pay you what I promised, but don’t expect the extra compensation that I considered giving you if he was properly trained.” Changbin glanced down, and Hyunjin hated how he could see the contemplation on the elder’s face, as if he wished he had done worse to Hyunjin for sake of earning the extra cash. It hurt, and Hyunjin tore his eyes from Changbin to stare at the foot of the bed, trying not to panic as all eyes locked back onto him.

“Hyunjin,” Minho said sternly. He didn’t want to look up, but he knew there would be consequences if he didn’t, and right now his fear was winning over his pride. He slowly lifted his gaze to Minho, and the elder watched him for a moment. “Get out of bed,” he ordered. Hyunjin bit his lip. How was he supposed to do that? He shifted his legs awkwardly, sweeping them over the side of the bed and dragging half of the comforter to the floor with them. Taking a deep breath, he slowly tried to lift himself to his feet without being able to use his chained hands to push himself up. His entire body ached with the movement, the bandages rubbing uncomfortably against his stomach, but he managed to get to his feet, balancing on the foot that could support him, not wanting to risk what happened last time when he tried to put pressure on the injured one. He was trembling, and he willed for his body to stop, but he had no control over it.

Minho took a step forward and Hyunjin almost fell backwards, his instincts telling him to get away from the older alpha. Minho came closer until he was reaching out and touching Hyunjin’s arm, gently at first, then grabbing and tugging him forward. Hyunjin yelped as he was jerked back by the chain, feeling one of his wrists pop, waiting for pain and breathing with relief as none came.

“Take him off this chain. Hurry up with it, I’m ready to leave this dingy place,” Minho said tiredly. Changbin nodded, and Minho grabbed Hyunjin’s shoulders to turn him around, facing his back to Changbin who began to fidget with the lock on his wrists. Hyunjin was shaking so hard, and he could feel Minho dig his nails into his shoulders, perhaps warning him to stop moving so much. His breaths were coming out in rapid succession, his throat felt tight and dry. He felt the weight of the chain drop from his wrists, and almost immediately after, Minho jerked him hard towards the guards standing at the door. Automatically, Hyunjin dug his heels into the carpet. The men there were the same ones that beat him up just yesterday, their cold eyes locking onto him as the taller one stepped forward and grabbed him from Minho, yanking him towards the door. Hyunjin looked back pleadingly as he was pulled from the room. Changbin and Jisung were both watching him with dull, tired eyes. Jisung mouthed something, but Hyunjin couldn’t tell what he was trying to say to him.

The guards practically stormed down the hallway, Hyunjin forced between them so there was no way to run in either direction. He heard a door creak open, a gasp. Felix.

As they passed the doorway, Hyunjin met eyes with Felix’s fearful ones. He could see the tears welling up there, the paleness to his face, figuring they probably looked very similar right now as his own eyes were damp with hot tears. “Be safe,” Felix’s trembling voice whispered, and Hyunjin didn’t have the sanity to respond.

Minho passed Felix and Hyunjin saw his stare filter with amusement. “Better call back your omega before he does something stupid, Changbin,” he called over his shoulder.

Hyunjin only then realized that Changbin had been following them silently, though the elder’s eyes widened and he rushed to the room that they’d finally passed, whispering at Felix, “I told you to stay in there!” Hyunjin took one last scared glance at Felix, the only one here that he could fully trust, before the guard in front of him reached the stairs. He began to descend, and Hyunjin felt a push from behind him that almost sent him toppling down, hurrying down each step that lead him to a broad room that he didn’t recognize. Minho stopped, turned to Changbin, but Hyunjin was being simultaneously pulled and pushed towards the front door, and he couldn’t make out what they were saying. The moonlight was the only reason why he could see once the door slammed behind him. There was a black car parked backwards, the trunk already open. Minho wasn’t here. He couldn’t punish him if he tried to run.

But Hyunjin already knew that running was as futile as fighting was. These guards could break him, and his foot was still too hurt to put the right kind of weight on to run fast enough. He was too scared of what Minho would do to him after he was caught if he tried. When the guards pushed him, he simultaneously fell into and was forced into the trunk, and was swallowed by a suffocating darkness as the door slammed shut behind him.

He curled into himself. The walls were tight around him and he was scared. Using the cover of darkness, taking advantage of his isolation, he let the tears slip down. Where was he going? What would happen to him there? Minho’s threats were enough of a sign that it wouldn’t be good, but Hyunjin didn’t want to think of those in fear of fully breaking down. His back jerked against one of the walls of the trunk as the car suddenly began to move. Being taken away from the house, his future was set.

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Felix was sobbing, and for the first time, Changbin knew he wouldn’t be able to console him. The omega had broken down after Changbin had scolded him for letting Minho see him, and Changbin immediately pulled him into his arms, bringing him over to the bed to sit him down. “Lix, it’s okay, it’ll be okay.”

“He won’t be okay and you know it,” Felix cried, shaking his head. Changbin wiped his tears with the back of his hand, but it was useless when new ones ran down almost immediately after.

“I do know. But what can we do about it? He’s gone, Lix. We have to move on.”

Felix shoved Changbin away from himself, and Changbin was so surprised by it that he actually stumbled away from the bed a little. “Like you care, you wanted him gone!”

Changbin narrowed his eyes. Felix had never acted out like this before since they saved him a year ago. He figured that it attested to how upset he was, but Changbin felt cold bitterness rise up in his stomach. “I’ll let you be alone for a bit to calm down,” he muttered. It was the opposite, he really needed some time to himself after this mess. He thought he’d feel better once Hyunjin was gone. He should’ve known that things wouldn’t instantly resolve with the people he lived with, his metaphorical family.

“I’m sorry for pushing you,” Felix mumbled, voice still trembling with sobs. “I’m sorry, I just… I’m so scared for him and I’m so angry that I couldn’t do anything!”

Changbin bowed his head. They’d get over it. Felix would forget about Hyunjin in a few months of things being calm. He’d just be a sad memory that would pass by every so often. They’d move on. “Let’s sit on the porch for a bit,” he suggested softly. “Get some fresh air. It’ll be okay, Lix.” It was all he could say. It was all he could do. He knew Jisung wouldn’t be okay either, but unlike Felix, Jisung liked to be alone when he was upset.

An hour later they were still sitting in the rocking chairs on the porch, staring out at the endless driveway, the field and trees surrounding the isolated house. Felix had settled a little, but the misery in his puffy eyes was almost worse to see than his tears. Changbin felt unsettled after thinking for so long. Maybe they wouldn’t get over it, but he could only hope.

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The steady beep of a pulse echoed through his pounding head. He’d been awake for what felt like hours, but hadn’t found the energy to open his eyes. Woojin felt numb, probably from the painkillers rushing through his veins. He felt tired in more ways than one. All he could think about was the fact that Hyunjin was still gone. How many days had passed now? Almost two weeks, at least. He danced with this hope that he’d wake up and see Hyunjin sitting by his bedside, safe again, but it was unlikely. With his family away and Hyunjin missing, he was in this miserable state alone. The same emptiness that always overtook him at the house swallowed him. As if it was the only way to will the lonely silence away, Woojin squeezed his eyes shut until his body could relax again, until he could fall back asleep to the steady, slow beat of his pulse.

Chapter Text

The trunk was shifting, jerking him from side to side, each turn sending him knocking into the walls closely surrounding him. His bruises were crying out in pain, he was trying to regulate his breathing but the breaths kept being knocked out of him. Woojin always said to take deep breaths when overwhelmed or you’d hyperventilate and panic more. Hyunjin tried to focus on that, something as simple as breathing, something that he could just barely control when nothing else was in his hands anymore.

He didn’t know how much time had passed since he left the house, only that it had been a long time by now. The darkness and stuffiness of the trunk was becoming suffocating; He had never felt never claustrophobic before but he was beginning to feel himself tremble, having to curl up to fit inside without touching all four walls or the low ceiling in the process. The car jerked again and again. He wished that he could feel around the walls in search for a latch to let him out, but he already knew that he wouldn’t find one even if his hands were free. The car looked too old, older than the year they started adding an emergency release inside of trunks, and it was likely that Minho had already thought of him trying to escape and planned for it.

There was a sudden jerking, Hyunjin’s entire body smacked against the wall. He didn’t know which way the door even opened anymore, the darkness messing with his sense of direction. The moonlight was almost too bright when the door swung open, and he squinted, taking a deep breath of fresh air. It was almost soothing before he realized with a jumpstart to his heartbeat where he likely was, and who was staring down at him. One of the guards grabbed him under his arms and yanked him up from the trunk like he was weightless, dropping him to his feet. Hyunjin yelped and nearly collapsed, probably would have if he wasn’t caught and held up. His injured foot hurt so bad, and he realized that curling up in the awkward way that he had probably cut off some amount of circulation to it.

He was held still by firm hands as the passenger door opened and Minho stepped out, stretching his arms above his head with a yawn, as if this was just an average day. For all Hyunjin knew, this could be some normal event for him. The thought was sickening, and the anxiety began to spike up louder and louder as Minho gave a nod and he was pushed down a driveway.

The house was huge, a mansion, the driveway leading to a three car garage with two more cars parked outside of it, including the one they’d just gotten out of. Hyunjin walked on legs that felt like jelly and static both at once, feeling his entire body tremble. What was going to happen to him in this house? Would he ever leave it? Minho had promised not to kill him, but the alternative wasn’t better at all. At least if he lived he’d have a chance to escape. He had to survive this. Changbin was right, he had to be obedient or he wouldn’t make it out.

The taller guard unlocked the front door, and Hyunjin was shoved through it, the guard behind him having a firm grasp on his cuffed hands. When the door swung open, he was pushed into a beautiful entryway, the ceiling at least four feet higher than anything Hyunjin had ever seen before, the floors hardwood, the furniture likely hand-crafted. He’d have called the place gorgeous if he wasn’t here for the reason that he was here for. But in seeing such a place, all he could feel was dread.

As the door slammed behind him, he knew that bad things would happen here in this mansion, and this feeling was only confirmed when he was completely let go, balancing on his good leg, only having a second to take in the large living room ahead before a hand was running through his hair. He immediately tensed and Minho chuckled before pulling his hand back, giving Hyunjin a shove. He stumbled forward, falling to his knees as his weight shifted onto the foot that couldn’t support him properly, and Minho stepped around and stared down at him cockily.

“It’s convenient that I don’t have to worry about you trying to run,” he said, grabbing Hyunjin’s hair again and tightening it between his fist. Hyunjin winced as his head was yanked back and he was forced to stare up at Minho’s smirk. “It’ll make it easier to put you in your place.”

His heart was racing, and despite Woojin’s warning, he couldn’t control his breathing now. Was Minho’s threat going to happen now…?! Minho glanced behind him to the guards that were standing rather awkwardly in the entryway, motioning his head towards the large staircase behind him. “Go,” he said blankly, and the alphas obeyed, hurrying up and turning down a hall. They were alone.

“Stay down,” Minho commanded, finally letting go of Hyunjin’s hair to make his way to the living room. Hyunjin thought about crawling to the front door, sneaking out and getting away, but he knew it was more risky than reasonable. Minho would hear the click of the lock turning, and Hyunjin didn’t want to piss him off when he was in his home, under his mercy. He zoned back into reality to see Minho putting a mask over his mouth and nose, putting on a baseball cap. What was he doing…?

He then clicked on the television, messed with it. Hyunjin could only watch, half numb, half terrified beyond measure that he didn’t know what would happen next. The light from the screen turned to darkness as the picture turned black. A voice poured out from the speaker.

“Did you do as you said?”

Minho smiled. “He’s right over there. Remember, after this mess I’m planning to get rid of him. If any of you have a plan for what you’d like done to him, you can honestly just have him.”

Hyunjin went cold, his face paled. Minho was likely talking to the people he’d mentioned, the people that wanted him dead. Minho turned to him, whistled. “Come here,” he said firmly. Hyunjin shook his head. He was scared, he was too scared, he couldn’t move, he couldn’t let them see him. Minho’s eyes narrowed, he practically marched from the television and once more grabbed a fistful of Hyunjin’s hair, dragging him by it. Hyunjin yelped, struggled, tried to grab onto the sofa he was dragged past to no avail, finally being dropped in the center of the room. He swallowed, glancing up to the blank, black screen. Voices broke the quiet once more.

“He’s very pretty, especially for an alpha. I haven’t seen your videos yet so this is my first time getting a look,” a different voice said, interest fluid in the man’s tone.

“Seems like your trainers did a shit job though,” the first voice muttered.

Minho scoffed down at Hyunjin, who was shaking so harshly that it was visible, eyes wide, lip quivering. “They did do a shit job, but I’ll set him straight within a few days.”

A laugh from the speakers. “I believe that. Hey, Minho, I’ll take him off your hands if he’s manageable, I’m sure my buyers would like a change.” The words came from the same voice that had called him pretty. Hyunjin wanted to vomit, everything in his body was telling him to get the fuck out of there but he knew he wasn’t capable of running and that running would have terrible repercussions. He realized that this was final, that he probably wouldn’t ever get out of a situation like this. Once Minho was done with him he would just go to whoever the hell this was, he’d probably be thrown around until he died. A tear slipped down his cheek, he tried to stay silent regardless.

“Is he crying?” someone new laughed, a woman with a gravelly voice. “Poor baby, he’s scared.” It was sarcastic and it only fueled his tears further. He almost missed being at the previous house, at least he had Felix to comfort him there. He was alone here, and in much more danger than before.

Minho shrugged, glancing down at Hyunjin. “Cry all you want, you did this to yourself.” Hyunjin shook his head. He didn’t do anything, he was just trying to help omegas, how did it all lead to this hopeless, terrible scenario…? Minho then turned to the screen with a smile, only notable due to his eyes crinkling, the mask blocking view of the lower part of his face entirely. “I’ll take buyers. You’ll see how he changes over the next few days, I’ll tame him well. You’ll get your revenge for all of the inconvenience he’s caused for you, might even get some fun out of him on the side.”

“Mind showing us your definition of fun?” the playful voice requested. “Get him messy so we can see what we’d be earning.”

 

No, no no no. Hyunjin shook his head quickly, pleaded with his eyes to Minho, but Minho was cold in staring back down at him. “Sure. I’ll toy with him a bit. Let’s see what puppy has to offer.”

He stepped forward, Hyunjin crawled back, but didn’t get far before Minho had a hand in his hair once more, holding him still. He pressed his face right into his crotch, Hyunjin whimpering. “Please don’t do this,” he pleaded, his voice muffled through the fabric of Minho’s pants. “I’ll do anything, please-”

“If you’ll do anything then suck me off,” Minho said halfheartedly. “In front of all of these people.” He reached down, pulling Hyunjin’s face away to pull down his zipper with one hand, reaching down his pants to take out his cock. “Come on, slut. This is your purpose now, remember? Don’t even think about biting, I’ll put a bullet through your skull if you do.” Hyunjin was sobbing now, shaking his head. This wasn’t okay, this wasn’t like the softness Changbin showed him, or even what Jisung did, and he was terrified. Minho reached down and grabbed his jaw, pressing tightly to the sides so his mouth was forced open. “Do it,” he demanded, and Hyunjin squeezed his wet eyes shut and tried.

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“Please wake up…”

He instantly recognized the voice. He’d honestly been awake for what felt like hours, but didn’t have the will to open his eyes. At least until he heard that voice. Instantly he flickered his eyes open and groaned, the fluorescent light right above him shining directly down. A gasp echoed from beside him, there was some shuffling. Woojin turned his head and stared weakly at Chan, who sighed with relief. “You’re awake!” Chan breathed, rubbing his eyes. There were dark circles under them; He looked like he hadn’t slept in forever, seeming even more tired than his usual self. “It’s been almost two days, Woojin, I was so worried.”

“What happened…?” Woojin asked. His entire body still throbbed with pain. He tried to shift and swallowed a yelp as pain shot up his back, through his arm. He couldn’t move his arm. Why couldn’t he move his arm?

“You were in an accident. Looks like you drove straight off the road. Your car was practically crumpled by the tree, you’re lucky to be alive,” Chan said hurriedly. “I used the tracker that we put on our phones to find you after I heard the crash through the call.” He then paused, before his voice softened, shaking a bit. “Woojin, did someone shoot at you…? There was a hole in your car window, and you had a bullet in your arm…”

It all came back to him at once. The car swerving, the gunshot, the window rolling up, calling Chan, his car being slammed off of the road and rolling. He swallowed, it stung a little to do so. “There was this car driving erratically, it pulled up beside me and… yeah. I got shot,” he said tiredly. “I couldn’t see who it was, and they never got in front of me to see their license plate. They didn’t have one on the front of the car, and the windows were too tinted to see inside.”

Chan swore. “This is why we have fucking laws saying you have to have a front plate… Nevermind. I’m just glad that you’re okay. When I found you you were bleeding so much, I was so scared.” He shook his head, rubbing his eyes once more. “Who the hell would’ve shot you? Someone we put in jail? There are a lot of people getting out lately, maybe they held a grudge-”

“I think it has to do with Hyunjin,” Woojin muttered. Chan blinked, pulling his hands from his eyes quickly, furrowing his brow.

“You really think so…?” he asked, uncertainty clear in his tone.

“I do. Whoever took Hyunjin doesn’t want him to be found, and we’re the two people focusing solely on the case. I have a feeling that this means that Hyunjin might really have been kidnapped. I mean, it’s easier to hide a body than a living person. Why would they go out of their way to try and kill me if they weren’t worried about getting caught…?”

Chan nodded slowly. “Potentially,” he said, “but we have to stay level-headed. We can’t jump to a conclusion, so let’s look for evidence. Do you remember what type of car it was? We can go from there, it’ll just take a while. Besides, we still have Hyunjin’s computer waiting at the tech room. They called and said they got past the password. Do you want me to wait for you to get out of the hospital, or do you want me to go check what’s on there?”

“How… many days do they predict I’ll be here?” Woojin asked. The realization that he was stuck in a hospital bed for an indefinite amount of time was scary, especially because it meant that he wouldn’t be able to continue the case until he was healed enough to leave. Every day counted when it came to finding Hyunjin, especially if he was still alive, which was all Woojin could hope for.

Chan bowed his head, his eyes dropping to stare at the floor. “At least a week. Your arm is in a cast right now, it was twisted awkwardly when I found you and they said that it’s fractured pretty badly. Nothing that won’t heal correctly of course, but still. You’re all bruised up and the arm that isn’t broken just had a bullet pulled out of it. Even once you’re out of here, you’re not going to be able to do police work for a while. The chief said he’d use your vacation time so you’re still being paid in your absence, but…

“That… That isn’t what matters,” Woojin whispered. He felt choked up. He didn’t have a week to wait, that was too long, it had already been more than two weeks since Hyunjin disappeared.

“I know,” Chan said softly. “I’ll do everything I can to find him in your place, but this can’t be helped. You can’t do anything for Hyunjin in your condition.”

Woojin swallowed tightly. “Okay,” he whispered, but he was determined. Once he healed enough to leave, he wouldn’t take a break like the chief said to, he’d get right back to searching for his little brother. And as long as Chan kept looking in this down time, it would be something. Chan was right that it was all that they could do.

Woojin sighed before determining what was best. “Go ahead and look through his computer.”

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His tears had long stopped, even after he’d gagged three times, even after there was cum dripping down his chin from Minho pulling out and releasing over his face. The voices were talking but Hyunjin could only hear them blurring, unable to make out the words. He stared blankly ahead, jaw sore, throat sore, entire body sore as hell. He wanted to sleep. Above all else, he just wanted to go to sleep and not wake up until he was safe again.

Minho zipped up his pants and turned towards the screen. There was more talking that he couldn’t make out. He didn’t care what they were saying anymore, his racing thoughts were louder than their voices. ‘I’m going to die like this.’ ‘How can I get out of something like this?’ ‘This is it.’

He didn’t know how much time had passed before he was being lifted up. He could barely process that Minho was carrying him beyond the stinging feeling of his bruises being pressed against. The first words that he could actually make out were clear as day. “This is your life now, Hyunjin,” Minho said calmly. “Better get used to it quickly.”

Down a flight of stairs, they entered a concrete room. A basement. It was just as stuffy as the trunk had been, and there were no windows. Minho clicked a shallow light on and it barely illuminated the room, light not reaching the corners well. The large basement was almost empty besides a five gallon jug of water on the floor, a table with a bowl on it, and a large cage in the corner. It looked like a dog cage, but reinforced, the bars were thicker, seemed sturdier, than what he’d normally see. Minho was walking towards it. He already knew that he was going to be put in there, but he felt the tightness in his throat again as the door was opened and he was dropped inside onto the hard plastic floor. He didn’t have the will to try and fight his way out. Minho closed the door, clicked a lock through the grate. Hyunjin would’ve cried if his eyes weren’t so dry and his throat wasn’t so raw, but they were too dry and his throat was burning. He curled up on the hard floor and squeezed his eyes shut, begging for sleep to come and knowing that his racing thoughts wouldn’t allow that to happen.

“I’ll be back to keep your training going later,” Minho said. Hyunjin kept his eyes shut. He never wanted to look at Minho again, but knew that was a hopeless wish. Minho waited for him to respond, huffing as he didn’t. “Until then, be good and stay quiet. If you wake me up, you’ll regret it.” Like he could yell with his throat so fucked up. Minho hadn’t been gentle on him in the slightest when fucking his mouth. Hyunjin felt a wave of exhaustion creep over him. He begged it to take him away.

Minho turned and went up the stairs. The light flicked off and he was trapped in suffocating darkness once more. He almost preferred it now. After minutes of an anxiety-fueled silence, he finally fell asleep.

Chapter Text

He woke up to his stomach growling, opened his eyes to see bars. It was a bitter reminder of where he was at. His eyes had adjusted to the dark, but there was nothing exciting to look at in the basement. The air was moist and smelled of dust. The room was completely silent, so quiet that he could hear his own breathing.

He was starving. He could only assume it was sometime in the early morning if he’d slept all night, and he hadn’t eaten anything since yesterday morning when Jisung had convinced him to eat. Even then it was small, he hadn’t had an appetite past his anxiety. He was thirsty as well, staring at the jug of water across the room. He brought his knees up to curl further into himself. It was cold, and his thin t-shirt wasn’t doing much to keep him warm. He knew for a fact that Minho wouldn’t give him a blanket, but he could still hope.

Hyunjin blinked and frowned at the way his eyes stuck closed for a second. He parted his dry lips to lick over them and almost gagged at the taste of the cum that had dried on his face. He felt sick. He would have given anything to have his hands free so that he could rub it all off, would give even more to be able to go wash his face.

The door opening ceased his thoughts as light poured through into the basement from the door atop the stairs. His throat immediately tightened, his stomach turning, as Minho came down the stairs. Unlike his usual professional attire, he was wearing pajama bottoms and a plain t-shirt. Hyunjin stared up at him quietly as he approached the table across the room.

“Good morning puppy,” he said. Hyunjin winced at the name, curling up a little further. “You didn’t wake me up so I figured I’d reward you.” He grabbed the large jug of water and screwed open the cap, pouring some into the bowl. He filled it about halfway before tightening the lid back onto the jug and carrying the bowl over to the cage. He knelt down, staring at Hyunjin dully. “Nasty,” he muttered, “I’ll make Jaehwan clean you up later. I don’t want to fuck something dirty.” He put the water down to fidget with the lock, and Hyunjin tried to see what the combination was but couldn’t from the angle he was at.

The door swung open and Minho placed the water bowl inside before closing it again. Hyunjin sucked up how thirsty he was and held to his pride. “I don’t know how to drink this without my hands,” he mumbled, hoping that Minho would uncuff him. If he was going to be stuck in this cage the entire time, what was the point in him not having his hands free…?

Minho laughed halfheartedly. “You’ll figure it out if you’re thirsty enough.” And with that, he stood, yawned, and made his way up the stairs.

“Wait!” Hyunjin called out desperately. He just wanted his hands free, he didn’t care if he had to beg. But Minho didn’t stop, and the room was encased in darkness once more. Hyunjin waited tiredly for his eyes to adjust again, staring down at the bowl when they finally did. He didn’t know how to drink without spilling the water. He couldn’t pick up the bowl at all, and he couldn’t lift himself up comfortably. He was frustrated enough that he felt tears prickling in his eyes, begging them not to fall as he shifted himself to his knees, leaning down as far as he could. It still wasn’t far enough to drink without falling face first into the bowl.

He leaned back on his heels, the tears finally falling. Crying would only make him lose more water, and therefore more thirsty, but what was he supposed to do? And what did Minho mean by ‘I don’t want to fuck something dirty’? Was he going to do worse today than he did yesterday…? Hyunjin only cried harder, cried until the door was opening again and one of the guards was coming down with a wet cloth, clearly displeased. “Shut up,” the guard sighed. The lock was messed with once more, and the door was opening again. The guard knelt and brought the cloth up to Hyunjin’s face, and the captive winced as the freezing wetness was pressed harshly against the skin of his cheek. The rough fabric of the cloth was a little painful, but he was at least grateful that he wouldn’t have the nasty mess on his face anymore. He stayed as still as possible until the cloth was pulled away.

Staring down at the water, he had a little hope. “I… I need help drinking this,” he said softly, his voice trembling a little. This was one of the guards that had kicked him around the other day. There was little chance that he would actually hold the bowl up. The man stared at him blankly.

“Why should I help you?” he asked dully.

Hyunjin swallowed. “Please,” he pleaded, and the guard sighed, grabbing the bowl roughly enough that some of the water spilled out, holding it up.

“Hurry up,” he said, annoyance vivid in his tone. Hyunjin sputtered out a thank you before leaning down and sipping on the surface of the water, sighing at how good it felt on his sore throat. He took just a few swallows before the bowl was being brought down to the ground again, still a quarter of the way full. “That’s enough,” the guard muttered, closing the door and rising.

Hyunjin bowed his head. He was still thirsty, but he couldn’t argue any further than he already had, couldn’t push his luck. “Thank you,” he whispered. The guard rolled his eyes and left.

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It was torture, laying in the hospital bed just waiting for an answer back as to what Chan found on the computer. The nurses and doctor would come in every so often, and he was rational with them, but on the inside he was panicking. He’d been asleep for two days, and now he’d be in this bed for another week or so. That was nine days of doing absolutely nothing. If Hyunjin was alive, they had to be prompt about this, there was no time to waste. And all Woojin could do was convince himself that Hyunjin in fact was alive, and that he was waiting for help.

There was a knock at the door and he looked towards it numbly, assuming it to be another nurse coming in to check his vitals. Instead, Chan stepped in the room. Woojin immediately sat up straighter. “What did you find?” he asked impatiently. Half the day had passed since Chan went to see what was on Hyunjin’s computer, and he was positive that something would’ve been found connected to Hyunjin’s catfishing allegation.

Chan was frowning as he fell into one of the two chairs against the wall. “Evidence, for sure, but nothing inherently useful. Hyunjin was talking to at least twenty people on five different accounts. It’s true. He’s been posing as omegas and sure enough, some of these people he’s talked to are people that the tipper reported. Hyunjin really is the person we were getting those tips from.”

Woojin sighed. So Jeongin and Seungmin were right after all. There had been a small hope that it was just a misunderstanding, or not as big of a deal as they made it seem. But it wouldn’t make sense for things to be easy, and he knew subconsciously the entire time that this was a big issue. “What sort of evidence did you find? Other than that.”

Chan bowed his head, folded his hands, inhaled and exhaled slowly. “The person he was talking to most recently’s username is ‘J-one’. This J-one person was flirty and such, but that isn’t what shocked me.” Chan then looked up grimly, locking his eyes with Woojin. “He guessed that Hyunjin was an alpha, and knew Hyunjin’s name. Hyunjin blocked him after that, but the messages are still there. I think this J-one person is our culprit, he seems to have known way too much about Hyunjin, enough to have been a potential stalker. The account is deactivated now so it’ll be hell to track the location down, but...”

Woojin felt the color drain from his face. “Why didn’t Hyunjin tell us that someone was stalking him…?” He asked quietly, lowering his gaze to the blankets over his lap. “He should’ve told me, we could’ve gotten him protection or… or something, anything.”

Chan’s voice was soft, “He probably didn’t want to admit to you what he’s been doing this entire time. Wouldn’t you be upset with him knowing that he was doing something so dangerous?”

Woojin swallowed, but ultimately he knew that Chan was right. He would’ve been either panicked or livid about it, and it was reasonable that Hyunjin had wanted to avoid upsetting him. But still… “He was kidnapped because he couldn’t trust me,” he whispered. Chan quickly denied it, but it was a fact. If Hyunjin had just told him, if Hyunjin had been able to tell him, all of this wouldn’t have happened.

“Please do more research,” Woojin requested quietly. He wanted to be alone to process these thoughts; Chan’s optimism was nice, but not here, not when being realistic was the most rational option. “We really need to know who this J-one person is.” Chan nodded, rising from the seat. He stood, stared at Woojin for a long time. Woojin tried not to look back at him.

“Just… Take care, okay, Woojin? This isn’t your fault. Please don’t blame yourself for what you couldn’t help or didn’t know.” Woojin nodded numbly. Chan left. Woojin rested his head back down onto the pillow, closed his eyes, and sunk further into the guilt than ever before.

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It felt like hours, it likely really had been multiple hours, and Hyunjin’s stomach was aching with hunger by now. He felt nauseous, felt dizzy with anxiety. What was Minho going to do to him? The door opened and he almost didn’t notice it until he heard the steps down the flight of stairs that led to where he was at. He looked up quickly, bowed his head hurriedly as Minho reached the bottom step. There was a guard behind him, and Hyunjin figured that whatever was about to happen, it would be really, really bad. The numbness began to blossom in his chest, as if his body and mind were preparing him for the worst before he even knew what was coming. He welcomed the feeling, hoping that it would consume him so that he wouldn’t suffer as much.

The guard stepped around Minho and opened the cage. Hyunjin sat restlessly until he was roughly yanked out, tripping onto his hands and knees on the concrete. He was lifted up and pulled towards the stairs, limping to keep pace. He wanted to ask where they were taking him, what was going to happen. But Changbin’s warning echoed in his mind. He had to be obedient, as much as possible, to stay safe. Minho followed them up the steps, Hyunjin struggling to make it up each one but eventually making it to the top.

“You’re awfully quiet,” Minho said. Hyunjin bit his lip. He didn’t want to give Minho any fuel to burn him with, he didn’t want to say anything that he might regret. Minho smiled slyly, it seemed like silence had been the correct answer after all, and the guard led Hyunjin through a few rooms of the giant, decorative house. A pantry, a large kitchen with stainless steel appliances, a dining room, the living room that just yesterday Hyunjin had been in when he was forced to… He shuddered, trying not to remember. They passed through there and down a hallway, where a set of double doors were propped open. The guard didn’t step into this room. Instead, he shoved Hyunjin in, hard enough that he was falling to the floor. The guard then turned and left them alone.

Minho walked in and closed the doors behind him, clicking a lock. Hyunjin took in the room. A king sized bed took up the center of it, the blood red sheets made nicely. There was other furnishing, a dresser, a lamp, a rocking chair, a door that was cracked open enough to see a bathroom with intricate tile flooring. This was Minho’s bedroom, he was certain, and his heart began to race.

“Go lay down on the bed,” Minho said, not sparing him a glance before walking towards the bathroom and disappearing behind the door. Hyunjin brought himself to his feet, turned and looked at the doors behind him. He couldn’t run, he wasn’t capable of it. Why did his brain keep telling him to take off if he couldn’t…? Minho walked back out of the room and stared at him with narrowed eyes. “Are you deaf?” he asked, and Hyunjin swallowed, limping to the side of the bed. He stared down at the sheets. What would happen here…? He already knew, and it scared him badly. It wouldn’t be the same as it had been with Changbin. He already knew. It would be similar, but it wouldn’t be safe, it wouldn’t be comfortable. He could only hope that it wouldn’t hurt.

He put his knee up on the bed, paused. Climbed forward, paused. Everything in him was screaming to get away, but the numbness had overcome the voices, and he knew that anything besides full obedience would bring him more pain than just listening would. He made it completely onto the bed and fell onto his back, head resting on the soft pillow, and immediately felt exhaustion creep over him. The bed was so soft.

But his spiked heart rate did nothing to help him relax, especially when Minho was unbuttoning his shirt, tossing it onto the rocking chair in the corner. Hyunjin squeezed his eyes shut, felt the bed shifting, felt a warmth above him as Minho leaned over him. “Are you scared?” Minho asked under his breath, Hyunjin swallowed and nodded.

“You’ll get used to it,” Minho replied before leaning down and pressing his lips to Hyunjin’s. Hyunjin immediately tensed, trying to follow suit as Minho’s tongue pressed into his mouth. He was scared, his mind racing, his body so tense that it hurt a little. Minho pulled away, and Hyunjin opened his eyes. He wished that he hadn’t. Minho was too close, it only made him more anxious. “Have you never been kissed before?” Minho asked with a scoff. Hyunjin felt the heat travel to his face.

“They… they did,” he said quietly, voice trembling.

“They?”

“Changbin. Jisung,” he mumbled before remembering that he, and Minho, wasn’t supposed to know their names. But it was too late to take it back, and he didn’t find himself caring too much at this point.

“Well they did a shit job at teaching you how,” Minho muttered. “I’ll fix that.”

Minho then began to trail his hands up Hyunjin’s sides, leaning down to bury his face into his neck. “I’ve always wondered what it feels like, fucking an alpha,” he said openly. Hyunjin squeezed his eyes shut once more, trying to fall into the numbness that comforted him yesterday. It wasn’t coming fast enough, he could feel every touch clearly. “That’s part of why I wanted you alive, you know. Are you grateful? That you’re still alive?”

And for the first time of being asked that question, Hyunjin considered saying no. He’d always cherished his life, feared losing it. But was being alive worthwhile if this would be his life from now on…? If he’d never see Woojin or Seungmin or his parents or anyone ever again? For once he considered that death might be a better option, and he was afraid of himself for thinking so.

“Answer, puppy,” Minho said impatiently.

“I don’t know,” Hyunjin replied without thinking. Minho frowned, and Hyunjin winced, expecting a hit or something to come. Minho then leaned down, burying his face into Hyunjin’s neck. Hyunjin didn’t expect pain to come from there, and yelped as sharp teeth dug into the sensitive skin. He began to struggle as Minho bit down harder, but without his hands free he could do nothing to push the elder off of him. Minho then pulled away.

“If you’re not grateful to be alive, at least be grateful that you’re not some omega bitch,” Minho said casually. “Or I would’ve just marked you legitimately.” He wanted to cry again, but held it back, the tightness of his throat almost unbearable. Imagining being an omega, having a scar of Minho’s teeth on his neck for the rest of his life, it was too much. He’d noticed Felix with his two scars there but hadn’t said anything to keep from upsetting him. He couldn’t imagine what it would be like, being in this situation as an omega. He couldn’t imagine this situation being worse than what it was, but in that case, it would be.

“I’m going to fuck you. If you’re good and responsive, I’ll feed you after. If you’re boring or disobedient, don’t expect to eat.”

Hyunjin closed his eyes tightly. This was a nightmare. Maybe he did want to die after all. No, he couldn’t think like that. “Okay,” he whispered.

“Good,” Minho said, his breath still warm on Hyunjin’s neck. Hyunjin felt blood trickling there, but he wasn’t sure if it was real or imagined. “Remember, be good.”

The word ‘remember’ emphasized like that was a small reminder of Jisung’s promise, the promise that Hyunjin had up until now forgotten.

‘I won’t forget,’ Jisung had said just a few days ago. ‘And I will be on your side. Don’t forget me either. If you can’t find anyone else to be strong through this for, think of your brother, think of your friend, and if nothing else, you can think of my promise, too.’

And Hyunjin held to that. As Minho’s hands grazed his body roughly, dragged down his pants, as he was being shoved into roughly and the awful pain set in, he felt the numbness finally take hold. His mind wandered past what was happening to him, instead lingering onto Woojin, to Seungmin. He wondered if they were going to find him here somehow, even if it was unlikely. And ultimately, he thought back to Jisung’s promise, knowing that Jisung was the person with the most ability to help him. He could only hope that Jisung hadn’t been lying. As Minho smacked him to make him focus and wrapped his hands around his neck, squeezing, Hyunjin stayed numb, thinking to the future, willing himself to believe that he had one outside of this hell.

Minho finally came and began to stroke Hyunjin’s length, the younger alpha writhing under the comfortable feeling, struggling with the fact that such a horrible person was making him feel good like this. But nothing good could come out of this man above him. Minho suddenly leaned over Hyunjin to kiss him once more. Hyunjin let it happen, his body feeling dull and sore. He wanted to sleep.

“I forgot to tell you, by the way,” Minho said. Hyunjin almost whimpered as Minho let go of his cock and climbed off the bed, not letting him release. Minho grabbed his shirt, slipped it on and buttoned it up, zipped up his pants. Was he really done, just like that…?

“And I’ll show you a clip of it later to prove that I’m not lying,” Minho continued. Hyunjin struggled to sit up but managed, staring at Minho nervously. What could Minho possibly have to show him…?

“Your brother. Woojin?” Instantly, Hyunjin’s heart froze in his chest upon hearing his brother’s name. What did Minho do?!

Minho’s next words were what tipped the scale. He felt his body go cold, tears were burning down his cheeks within seconds until he was sobbing so heavily that it hurt. And in this moment, Hyunjin longed for death so suddenly, so vividly, that it felt like a stab to the chest.

“Your brother’s dead. I had him killed.”

Chapter Text

Chan knocked, but no one answered, so he let himself into the small house and walked through the living room to look for Woojin.

He finally found the alpha sitting at the kitchen table, the light of dawn filtering in. Empty bottles littered the wooden table, some having rolled off to drop to the floor, the trash can overflowing with them. Woojin stared out the window dully, not even seeming to have acknowledged that someone had come in. It had been like this for the past month. The moment their chief told them to give up on the case, that there was no evidence to be found and no kidnapped victim would have survived this long, Woojin had fallen apart. Chan had to visit daily to make sure that he was eating, wasn’t drinking himself to death, and was changing his clothes and showering. He didn’t mind it, he just wanted Woojin to be okay. But he knew that nothing he could do would make things better, ever, that Hyunjin was gone and that Woojin would never fully heal from it.

“Woojin, I’m here,” he said softly. Woojin hummed, but didn’t tear his gaze from the window. Chan glanced out, but didn’t see anything of note to be staring at. He sighed, making his way to the fridge to grab some leftover pasta and putting it on plates to heat up. “Seungmin called last night. He wanted to know if you and I wanted to get ice cream with him and Jeongin later today. Those kids are really sweet, you know?”

Woojin blinked, bowing his head. The glass bottle in his hand was empty, and it trembled against the table as his hand shook. “I… can’t,” Woojin slurred. “Sorry.”

Chan looked down. He’d take up Seungmin’s offer even if Woojin didn’t. Seungmin had sounded miserable every time he’d called Chan, and it seemed to be closure for the now graduated alpha to talk with someone. Chan offered him some business cards of counselors in the area, but Seungmin simply said that he was too anxious to leave the house without someone he knew there with him. It made sense, so Chan didn’t force it.

Woojin could probably use some company too, but he refused it. It took Chan begging for Woojin to finally give him a house key so that he could come make sure that he was okay every day, and lately all Woojin did was drink and sleep. The chief was asking about him coming back to work, but Chan knew he was in no condition to do so. Woojin was digging himself into a pit, and Chan didn’t have the coldness to tell him to get over something so tragic happening so recently.

The microwave beeped and Chan pulled the pasta out, wincing as the hot plates burned his hand. He got them to the table and sat down, pushing one towards Woojin. “Do you want me to get you some water?” Chan asked hopefully. Woojin shook his head no. Chan stood to go get some anyway.

“Woojin, I’m really worried about you,” he sighed. Woojin stayed silent, staring out the window. Chan frowned but didn’t continue. It was pointless trying to talk to him lately when he was barely responsive, but Chan would still try every day to strike up some form of conversation. The doctor said that safe distractions were healthy until Woojin was ready to talk about Hyunjin, but Chan didn’t know if he ever would be ready.

His phone buzzed in his pocket, and knowing that Woojin wasn’t focused enough to really care if he answered, Chan swiped the screen and held the phone to his ear.

“Hi, it’s me,” Seungmin’s soft voice echoed through the line. “I was wondering if Woojin’s coming tonight. Jeongin was asking too.”

Chan glanced to Woojin, who was still staring blankly out the window. He looked down to the floor sadly, shaking his head. “He’s… not going to make it this time. Sorry, Seungmin.”

“It’s okay,” the younger alpha responded, though he sounded dejected all the same. Woojin was like an older brother to him; After all, he and Hyunjin had been friends since childhood, and Seungmin looked up to Woojin almost as much as Hyunjin did. “Can you pick us up around five?”

Chan agreed and said his goodbyes, slipping his phone back into his pocket. He sighed, turning to Woojin, gently touching his shoulder, rubbing his hand up and down it gently. Woojin cooed at the feeling, leaning his head to rest against Chan’s arm. They’d gotten closer over the past month, and Chan wasn’t sure if the butterflies that sometimes floated in his stomach when he comforted Woojin like this were from some kind of caretaking trait that he’d picked up or if it was something else. He always pushed it out of his mind quickly. Woojin was an alpha, just like him. Their bond being more than close friends was irrational, wasn’t it? It just couldn’t happen, it wasn’t reasonable.

“I’m gonna go, okay?” Chan said gently. Woojin nodded, lifting his head from Chan’s arm and looking up at him tiredly. Chan smiled, let go, turned to leave.

“Can you stay?” Woojin asked quietly. Chan blinked. It was the first time he’d asked for anything in days, maybe weeks, and Chan immediately turned back and sat down in the chair across from Woojin. He reached his hand across the table and Woojin’s weak hand limply grasped his. “Feel woozy,” Woojin mumbled.

“From the alcohol,” Chan replied with a worried frown. “You have to be careful, drinking this much.”

Woojin mumbled back, words barely decipherable, “It makes me remember only good things. Good memories. I feel like he’s just upstairs right now, playing on his computer. Maybe he is? Maybe he really is up there and it’s all been a nightmare.”

Chan closed his eyes. He felt weak from this weight on his shoulders, he couldn’t imagine what Woojin was feeling. “He’s… I’m sorry, Woojin. Let’s talk about those good memories. Can you tell me some stories?”

Woojin’s eyes softened as he went into older childhood stories and some more recent ones, everything centered around Hyunjin that he could think of until his voice was slurring too much to make out the words and he was slumping on the table. Only once Woojin was asleep did Chan let go and make his way out with the same heavy feeling in his chest that he always had after seeing Woojin broken up like this.

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The house had been silent for a long time. Even through mild conversations between himself and Felix, Changbin could feel the tension. Jisung rarely left his room, Felix would go through waves of sadness, then relief before the sadness would return. Changbin would think, ‘Why can’t they just move on already?’ as the weight of what they did, what they let happen, piled up on his shoulders, pressing him secretly into the ground. Over a month had passed now. He wondered if Hyunjin was even still alive, almost hoped that he wasn’t for his sake. He’d never say that to Felix though, who’d break down, or to Jisung who would likely lash out.

It was rough. They hadn’t taken a job since they gave Hyunjin to Minho and their small savings was running out fast. They’d have to get back to work eventually, but the motivation was entirely gone. The effect Hyunjin had on them was too much, and now it was hard to recuperate back into their old lifestyle, knowing the damage that their actions could cause. Jisung was getting thin, too thin for just a month of time passing, and he’d snip out some harsh comment about Changbin’s nonchalant attitude every time the elder mentioned him needing to eat. When Changbin mentioned taking another job, both Felix and Jisung would bow their heads and fall quiet.

Something had to change. Changbin knew, but what could he do when he himself felt so shitty lately?

After making sure that Felix was really asleep, Changbin shuffled his way out of bed and made his way downstairs, through the living room, and out the door. It was cold now, cold enough to snow but not yet humid enough for flakes to fall. The grass had a sheen of frost from the nightly dew, and Changbin decided to grab a blanket from inside. Curling it around his body, he fell into one of the stiff rocking chairs and lulled himself back and forth.

He’d almost nodded off when the front door slammed behind him. He lept to his feet, nearly tripped over the blanket, whipping around only to find Jisung staring at him wide-eyed. “You scared the shit out of me,” he breathed, falling back into the chair, trying to calm his steady heartbeat with deeper breaths.

“No shit,” Jisung muttered, his shocked expression fading into a solemn one. “I’m… going out for a bit,” he then said before making his way down the steps from the porch.

Changbin furrowed his brow. It was somewhere after two in the morning, where was Jisung possibly going? But he didn’t want to deal with snide comments when he was in such a shitty mood himself, and instead of risking it by just asking, he sat back in the chair and closed his eyes. He took in the frigid air with each breath, mind slowly wandering back to Hyunjin every time he tried to yank the thought away.

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The drive was quiet. No one was on the roads this late at night, and Jisung preferred it that way. Lights would turn green immediately, the sun wasn’t blaring in his eyes. He turned off the radio the moment he got in the car and spent the entire twenty-five minute drive in silence. The hospital thankfully had a twenty-four hour visitation policy, which meant that he could go at night and not be accidentally spotted by someone who might, somehow, recognize him.

He parked in the near empty lot, made his way across some grass and some asphalt, the sliding doors parting. The cleanly scent hit him and he frowned, making his way to the front desk.

“I’m here to see Bang Yongguk,” he said quietly. The omega behind the desk always worked nights, and she smiled to see Jisung again.

“He’s been stable lately, no erratic heartbeats or anything,” she said cheerfully. Jisung tried to force a smile but found that he just couldn’t do it lately. The omega’s grin faded into something awkward at Jisung’s dull expression, and she said hurriedly, “I’ll lead you up to the room.”

He followed her onto the elevator, up to floor eighteen. The ride up was silent, awkwardly so, and Jisung wondered where the tension was coming from when she was just staff. He was imagining things, he’d been struggling with symptoms that he couldn’t pinpoint, a racing heartbeat, nightmares, ever since...

Regardless, he couldn’t wait until this girl would leave him alone with his thoughts again, and until he could see his mentor.

She unlocked the door to the room and let him in, closing it gently behind him with some cheerful comment that Jisung didn’t hear. Jisung paused before making his way up to the bed, sighing and staring down at the man he’d grown up beside since he was far too young.

When Jisung had been alone on those streets, he was prepared to die. It was a feeling that no thirteen year old should have to struggle with, but he remembered it vividly. The hunger, the desperation that drove him to break his morals and slit purses, fight in alleyways, anything for food or money. He was told that since his family was killed he could be put in some kind of foster service, but he was too paranoid to risk exposing himself. Telling the world that Han Jisung was still alive when the rest of the Han family had been brutally murdered in their own home was like shooting off a flare. It was like saying, ‘Come and get me, murderers, I’m still here.’ As desperate as he was to have a safe place to sleep again, he still valued his life a little more.

And that was when he met Yongguk. It was in a fighting ring in an old, torn up building, and Jisung had just finished getting himself completely destroyed by the competition. He’d collapsed the second he left the ring, wondering if the pain would ever subside, if he’d have to suffer like this for the rest of his life. He’d been broken enough to not have the energy to struggle when the older man lifted him from the ground and took him out of the building. When he’d woken up, all of his wounds had been bandaged, a blanket was drawn over him, and for the first time in months he had a pillow under his head.

Yongguk was his savior, an angel perhaps. He taught Jisung how to really fight, how to fend for himself, how to get real food in obscure ways that wouldn’t get him caught as easily. When Changbin came along, Yongguk taught him these things as well. They didn’t start running hits until Yongguk came home with news about the people who’d killed Jisung’s family. As a team, they personally found the assholes and tortured them until they spewed their apologies for what they’d done.

But Yongguk never let them kill. No matter how bad the person, or what the crime was, Yongguk always left the criminals tied up for the police to take care of. ‘If you kill them, they can’t repent,’ the elder would say. ‘If you kill them, they can’t suffer with the consequences of what they did.’

It was almost three years ago that everything changed. They’d gone after a hit, and for the first time, they’d lost. Yongguk had been beaten unconscious, and Jisung and Changbin had worked together to drag him as they ran and hid. They couldn’t treat him, he was dying, and so they brought him to this hospital. It sucked up all of their money, and they took hit after hit trying to make more to pour into the medical bills keeping their comatose mentor alive.

Three years, and Yongguk’s eyes were still closed. Jisung would come and talk to him when he felt overwhelmed, and he was pretty sure that Changbin did sometimes as well. Today, Jisung sighed, falling into the chair beside Yongguk’s bed and dropping his face into his hands, rubbing his eyes. “I think I made a mistake.”

The silence in response was always heartbreaking, but he was growing used to the pain of it. “Guk, we… we fucked up. I think we really fucked up this time.”

“This kid, we took this kid and…” he swallowed, his throat tight and burning. He wouldn’t cry about this. He wouldn’t look pathetic in front of his mentor even if the man couldn’t see it. “We made him suffer for nothing. And then we just threw him to the wolves.”

Hyunjin crying on the first day that they’d taken him, Jisung breaking his foot.

Jisung dumping water over Hyunjin’s head.

Hyunjin begging for Jisung to stop when he was pressing his fingers into him.

Hyunjin being kicked around by Minho’s men, back and forth until he’d crumpled into himself.

Hyunjin’s scared eyes as Jisung made him a promise that he hadn’t kept.

The guilt was eating him alive, it was too much, and finally a sob broke free. “Fuck, Yongguk, we’re worse than the fucking people we go after.” He trembled, swallowing down his voice so that he wouldn’t cry openly here where someone could walk in. “We were so lost in doing our job that we didn’t realize that he… he didn’t fucking do anything to deserve that shit, Yongguk, he did nothing wrong.”

He looked up with wet eyes blurring his vision, holding his breath and waiting. He knew no response would come. Yongguk wouldn’t wake up anytime soon, not after three years of consistent unconsciousness. Jisung bowed his head further until it had fallen nearly to his lap, hiding his face in his cold hands. “I want to take it all back,” he whispered shakily. “I want to just… just go back and say no when Minho asked us to do this mess.”

He shook his head slowly, then quickly. “What the fuck do I do…? What would you want me to do?”

It wasn’t until he actually processed his question that he received his own answer. What would Yongguk do? He wouldn’t whine like this, asking to go back in time. He’d step forward, say to move on, but in a different way that Changbin said it recently. He always told them to take their future into their own hands, that if they did nothing to stop someone, they wouldn’t be stopped.

It dawned on Jisung like a lightbulb switching on. If they didn’t do anything to stop Minho, he wouldn’t be stopped. If they didn’t do anything to save Hyunjin, he wouldn’t be saved. Jisung’s tears were sticky on his face, but no more fell as he slowly lifted his head from his hands. They were wasting time suffering with the consequences of their actions without doing anything to make amends. Two months now had passed since Hyunjin was taken away by Minho. Even if he was potentially not even alive anymore, they could still punish Minho. They could still do something right.

Jisung left the hospital feeling determined for the first time in months. Changbin was no longer on the porch by the time he arrived home, and Jisung took the initiative to go into the office and log into the website that he used to track Hyunjin down. It took hours before he’d found the right number.

He sent the first text to Woojin at five in the morning.

‘How desperate are you to see Hyunjin again? I can help you.’

Chapter Text

His alarm clock said seven am, and he barely believed it. Woojin had dragged himself to bed around three pm, right after Chan had left and he’d woken up laying on the hard kitchen table alone. Sixteen hours of sleep. Once upon a time, getting more than seven hours would be unlike him. It was becoming more and more of a frequent thing now that he didn’t have work to wake up for, now that he didn’t have Hyunjin to make breakfast for-

He cut the thought off, sighing deeply. His head was killing him, but that was becoming more frequent, too, and he rolled to his side to sloppily pat the bedside table for the bottle of aspirin that he kept there. Taking hold of it, he sat up with a fragile groan to unscrew the lid and pop a small handful of the tiny white pills past his lips.

His phone lit up, and he rubbed his eyes. It was probably Seungmin, asking him if he wanted to get some food or something. He was grateful to the kid, he really was, but he couldn’t handle being around someone who had been so close to his little brother. Seeing Seungmin’s face just reminded him of how many times Hyunjin would sneak him into the house sometimes, or how they would walk home from school together sometimes, or how Woojin would drive them to school events and restaurants sometimes when things were okay.

He glanced to the screen anyway, scrolling through the notifications. Chan letting him know that he was heading out yesterday, a coworker at the station asking if he was doing okay, if he was coming back soon, and…

Woojin’s brow furrowed. An unknown number. He clicked on the notification and it took him to his texts. His heart froze in his chest as he read over the message.

‘How desperate are you to see Hyunjin again? I can help you.’

Where his heart had frozen, it began racing, pounding so hard in his chest that his entire body began to tremble. He began to type back, misspelling and having to retype every word with how hard his hands were shaking.

‘Who are you? What are you talking about?’

He checked. The text had been sent at five in the morning, and it was now seven.

His phone buzzed. He held his breath as he read the response.

‘I won’t tell you who I am, but I can help you. I know everything about Hyunjin’s situation. If he’s still alive, I have an idea of where he would be.’

This had to be a prank or something, but who did Woojin know that would prank him like this? He couldn’t think of a single person that didn’t take Hyunjin’s disappearance seriously.

‘Where would he be?’ Woojin asked, feeling his throat tighten, his body growing cold with anxiety.

The texts were coming quickly, consistently.

‘I need payment first. I can’t help you without payment. You can trust me, Woojin.’

This person knew his name. It had to be real, it had to be. If this was a way to get Hyunjin back, even if it was only a slim chance, Woojin absolutely had to take it. Even if it was fake, he wouldn’t risk letting this fall through his fingers.

‘How do I pay? I’ll do it.’

He paused, feeling a tear slip down his cheek. Was this his chance? His chance to get his little brother back? He had to believe it was possible somehow. He had to.

‘I’ll do anything,’ he sent, swallowing tightly, pleading that this really would work out somehow, that this wasn’t just a false lead.

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“We have a job.”

Changbin didn’t expect to hear those words from Jisung. He didn’t expect to hear any words from Jisung while passing him in the kitchen on the way up the stairs, but definitely not those. “What?” he asked, almost not believing what he’d heard. Anytime he brought up a job, Jisung always snapped at him or ignored him. They weren’t ready, Jisung and Felix, and Changbin wondered warily what had changed overnight in Jisung that he’d become so eager for a job that he’d accepted one without bringing it up to Changbin first.

“Yeah,” Jisung muttered, making his way to the kitchen table. Felix glanced over his shoulder with wide eyes making contact with Changbin’s, the elder shrugging and making his way to sit down in his designated seat. As Felix continued cooking, Jisung sat and leaned his elbows on the table, rubbing his eyes. “Don’t be mad though.”

What the hell did he do that he’d have to say that? Changbin already had a subconscious idea, and he wasn’t liking it.

“Our next hit is Lee Minho.”

“What?” Felix gasped, nearly dropping the spoon he was using to stir the soup he was making.

Changbin groaned before slamming his fist on the table. Felix flinched. Jisung narrowed his eyes. “Are you an idiot? You know we’ll die before we touch a hair on Minho’s head! You have to let him go, Jisung. We can’t chase after a past hit like this for the rest of our lives, it’s been two months for fucks sake, I-”

“I already messaged Woojin,” Jisung boasted. “It’s set in stone. If you don’t help then whatever, I’ll do this one by myself.”

Changbin was almost shaking with anger. If there wasn’t three feet of table separating him from Jisung he would’ve smacked the younger alpha across the face for this mess that he’d started without asking first. “You’re a fucking idiot, Jisung. A straight-up dumbass. We’re going to die over this.”

“After two months do you really think Minho expects us to burst through his front door? We can do this stealthily. We can do this, Changbin. We have Woojin’s police knowledge too, it may help us, we don’t know. If it makes you so unhappy to do this, just know that we need the money and Woojin just sent me almost double what we usually get for hits like this just to try. He promised to send even more if we get Hyunjin back. So if you’re not gonna think about karma on this rich asshole, you can think of us supporting ourselves again.”

Changbin groaned, rubbing his forehead with both hands. He needed a drink. He needed a break from this mess. “Whatever,” he sighed. “But if this backfires…”

“If this backfires, we run like we did before. We find a new place to live, change our names, and disappear from Minho and Woojin’s sight. They won’t have any way to find or contact us, and we continue what we’re doing like nothing happened.”

“I think…” Felix spoke up quietly, timidly. “I think this’ll be good for us, too. Closure in a way. If Hyunjin really is gone… at least we know, you know?”

Changbin’s tension softened at Felix’s gentle voice, and he sighed. “Okay, whatever. If we’re going to do this though, we have to plan more carefully than we ever have. Minho has solid defenses. We have to tiptoe around him if we’re going to catch him without getting torn apart by his guards.”

Jisung nodded seriously, inhaling slowly before letting the breath fly free. “Let’s do this.”

Chapter Text

The bed creaked, blankets shifted, as Felix crawled onto it. Changbin stared up at the water-stained ceiling tiredly, waiting for sleep to come. They’d spent all day going back and forth on how they were going to do this. Wait for Minho to come out of his home, or break in? If they break in they might find Hyunjin, but it would be much more dangerous. Felix and Jisung were for it, but Changbin refused to be reckless in a scenario like this one. If they nabbed Minho off of the street while he was out, they could potentially work Hyunjin’s whereabouts out of him. At least, if he was alone. Surely a man as powerful and careful as Minho would bring a guard with him anywhere he went, and that was the concern. They needed to catch Minho in a place where they could fight dirty, with guns or ambush, without the public eye seeing their attack. They were both capable of taking down someone double their size, but the question was how much their street training compared to the guards’ likely professional training. They couldn’t risk losing the fight.

“Hey,” Felix whispered, and Changbin’s thoughts faded to the vision of his omega leaning over him. “You’re thinking too hard,” the younger whispered before laying down on Changbin’s chest, nuzzling his head up against the alpha’s chin.

Changbin sighed, reaching up a hand and stroking the back of Felix’s head, fingers trailing through soft hair. “Thinking too hard isn’t always a bad thing when it’s our lives at stake,” he muttered, letting his eyes fall shut and his brow furrow. “What was Jisung thinking…?”

“Jisung was thinking the same thing that I’m thinking,” Felix said softly, arms wrapped around his alpha’s torso, his breathing slowing to match Changbin’s in pace. “We did something wrong, and we need to repent for it. Isn’t Minho the type of bad guy you guys usually go after anyway? I know it’s more dangerous than usual, but…” he trailed off for a second. Changbin opened his mouth to speak, but Felix was continuing. “But, it’s doing the right thing. I know that it doesn’t seem worth it, but once it’s done it’ll feel worth it. Didn’t it feel worth it when you saved me?”

“Felix, it’s different,” Changbin sighed. “You were practically given back to us. We weren’t in danger. Plus, it was you that we’re talking about. Hyunjin isn’t you. I’m not in love with Hyunjin like I am with you. I feel bad for him, sure, but not bad enough to risk my life trying to fight a man like Minho when Hyunjin could already be dead or gone by now.”

Felix huffed, pulling away from Changbin to roll onto his back beside him, staring up at the ceiling with a bitter glare. “Hyunjin isn’t me, sure, but he’s kind and he did nothing to deserve what he’s suffering through. You’re the one who took the payment and kidnapped him. Shouldn’t you be the one who saves him?”

Changbin squeezed his eyes shut. They didn’t get it. Felix and Jisung didn’t get what was at risk here. He could tell that Felix was getting fed up, and honestly he was as well. Not wanting to argue, Changbin released his held breath and rolled to his side to have full view of the omega. “It doesn’t matter now, right? Jisung chose to do this, and I’m not leaving him alone. I’ll just… be thinking too much for a few days. While I’m not happy with this, I’m not going to be petty about it. If you two want to save Hyunjin so bad, we’ll at least try.”

Felix glanced over, his glare fading into something soft, something fond. Changbin cleared his throat, hurrying to continue, “But you have to be prepared for the chance that Hyunjin isn’t… here anymore. Whether we can’t find him or he’s dead, you and Jisung have to be ready for it.” The omega’s soft eyes faded to cold, his gaze sorrowful as he contemplated the reality of Changbin’s words.

“I’ll be prepared,” he whispered, but Changbin didn’t believe it. He could only hope for his family’s sake that Hyunjin really was somehow surviving even after two months of unknown hell.

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Jisung rubbed his eyes before leaning his elbows on the desk to run his hands through his hair tiredly. It had been hours of non-stop planning, mostly with Changbin, partially with Woojin. It was as if the police officer never put his phone down. His replies were always almost instant, and Jisung was trying to keep pace, but he was growing exhausted. It made sense that Woojin was so eager. He was now technically their client, so Jisung felt at least a slight obligation to respond in a timely manner, to give as much information as he could without exposing them. They had to be careful. If Woojin found out anything about them, they would be risking it all. Most of their clients were just as scummy as they were, if not worse, most of their clients would only bring a beating if they did them wrong. But Woojin had the power of the law supporting him, and Jisung would rather get a beating than spend years in a jail cell.

‘I need you to use your resources,’ was the text that Jisung had sent last. They didn’t have access to the same records that police had. ‘If you can get me a location, a family member, anything about Lee Minho, I can do much more for you.’

They’d discussed it all, to an extent. Jisung told Woojin that Minho was a bad man who paid to see Hyunjin suffer for the catfishing incident. Woojin surprisingly already knew that Hyunjin was catfishing, and after hearing that there was someone who’d intended to hurt his little brother over it, his texts grew sloppier in format. Jisung told Woojin that he knew Lee Minho’s face, but not much else about him. If they could find out the general vicinity of where he lived, a place he frequented, the names of his guards, the names of his family, anything, they would be able to track him down. After that, Jisung made Woojin swear that he would let Jisung do the rest.

‘This is the underground we’re talking about. Far deeper than the police have ever come across. This is a world of assassinations and torture and kidnappings and things you officers barely scrape the surface of. If you want Hyunjin saved, you have to let me handle this. I’m a part of this world already. If you try to run in with your entire police force, you’re just going to send Minho into hiding. Then you’ll never find Hyunjin.’

After reading that, Woojin reluctantly agreed to only be as involved as Jisung allowed him to. Jisung took this as a win. He expected that it would be more difficult than this, getting Woojin to comply to his requests. But then again, maybe he was underestimating Woojin’s desperation.

‘I’ll go to the station now and look through the database for people with the name Lee Minho. There’s probably hundreds of people with that name in this city though. Is there anything else defining that you know about him?’ Woojin asked.

Jisung paused before hurriedly texting back. “Send me pictures of them all. Or record a video of you scrolling through them. If I see his face, I’ll recognize him.”

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Woojin knew he shouldn’t be here. He shouldn’t be in the station so late at night when he hadn’t come here in months now. His chief and coworkers, all except for Chan at least, were pushing for him to return to work soon. Being here would imply to them that he was ready to get back to work, and he definitely wasn’t. Not until he had a conclusion on whether Hyunjin was alive or not, whether he was able to be saved.

The computer came to life, the screen running a few tests before he was typing in his passcode and being taken to the main page of the database. It was simple from there, to some extent. He typed in ‘Lee Minho’. Nearly four hundred results popped up. He sighed before narrowing the result down to just the city they were in. Only forty-three results now. It wasn’t necessarily rational to assume that this Minho person was in the city, but if the stranger didn’t recognize any of the Minhos on the screen, Woojin could then expand his search more.

He whipped out his phone. Recording the database wasn’t an acceptable thing to do, and sending police information to someone who didn’t have a badge was straight up illegal. He knew that if he got caught he could lose his badge, but it didn’t seem to matter right now when so much was on the line. He had to listen to this person, whoever it was that was helping him. It was all that he could do.

Scrolling through the names, Woojin began to record. There was a picture profile beside every Lee Minho on the screen, as well as a description of birthday, gender, height, and weight. He scrolled through all of them before ending the recording and sending it to the stranger. He waited restlessly for a response, considering that he should probably leave before someone came in, even though it was nearly midnight and the only people who ever worked this late were him and Chan.

There was a long pause. Full minutes passed, and Woojin fell into his swivel chair, holding himself with one arm and clutching his phone tightly with the other hand. Finally, a response came through.

‘I don’t recognize any of these people.’

His heart fell, but he refused to get discouraged yet. It just meant that the Lee Minho they were searching for was out of town. That was fine, it would just take longer to go through the search results. But right as he was about to refresh with a broader search, the stranger sent another reply.

‘Wait,’ was all that it said. So Woojin waited impatiently. A minute passed. He hit ‘search’ and let the four-hundred plus results load on the screen.

‘Wait, I think that the person at the top of the screen at 0:56 is him. I can’t tell, he looks too young. But the facial structure seems right.’

Woojin quickly reset the settings, hurrying back to scroll through. He rewatched his own video, going to the correct timestamp and following the scroll until he came across the person that the stranger was talking about. It was a child in the picture, but the birthday confirmed that this person should definitely be an adult in his twenties by now. It was rare that someone wouldn’t have an official picture taken since they were so young. Did this Lee Minho never get a driver’s license or anything that would bring light to his adult identity?

The boy looked bored, cat-like and cold. His hair was smooth and whatever suit he was wearing had a crisp, ironed image. Woojin took a picture of just this profile and sent it to the stranger.

The response back was almost immediate. ‘I think this really is him. He has the same eyes.’

And so Woojin dug further. He clicked on the boy’s profile and it took him further. His mother’s name was Soobin, his father’s name was Insoo. He had no siblings. Upon investigating his parents, Woojin discovered that they were both dead. His only family… They couldn’t use family as a lead, then.

‘His parents are both dead. No siblings, aunts, uncles. Not really anything useful in that regard,’ Woojin sent before digging further. He came across a single address of residence, typed it into the maps option on the database before typing hurriedly again. ‘Looks like he lived in some kind of mansion when he was this young. It’s in the middle of nowhere practically, I can send you the address.’

‘Do that,’ the response simply said. A little uncomfortable with how much he was exposing to a stranger that had claimed to be a part of the underground, Woojin hesitated. But this was for Hyunjin, and despite his qualms, he had to do this. He sent the address to the stranger, spending the minutes waiting for a reply by searching for more information to share. There really wasn’t anything else. This Lee Minho was practically non-existent, and given how suspicious that was, he potentially was the culprit that they were searching for.

‘I’ll look into it more. Thanks for your information. It’s very helpful,’ the stranger said. Woojin felt a little numb. He’d broken a handful of smaller laws by now, but this was a bigger one, and the realization was sinking in. Even still, it felt strongly like he had no choice but to do this, and so he stood and hurried from the station, drove himself home on autopilot, and laid in bed until the sun rose, sleepless.

Chapter Text

Jisung was impulsive and his impulses often got him into trouble. He knew this well, but such knowledge didn’t stop him from making the decision that he made the moment Woojin gave him the address of Minho’s childhood home.

Changbin had argued that it was stupid for an hour, and Jisung had retaliated the entire time in saying that he knew it was stupid, but it was a lead where they otherwise didn’t have one. On one hand, Minho could no longer live there. His parents were dead and he had no other living relatives, which meant that the house in that case would belong to someone else who’d be irrelevant, and they would have to move on and find a different option.

On the other hand though, Minho could still live there. In that case, they had plenty of options to play off of. They could run in, they could wait outside and ambush, or they could use stealth to get inside the house. Running into the house was the dumbest of the three ideas; It put them in a position to be attacked by multiple guards at once, to be in a place that the enemy was familiar with and they were not, and to be locked in if things went wrong. They refused to kill, but they had no doubt that Minho or his guards would be entirely willing to kill them. They were at a severe disadvantage in a direct fight.

Sneaking in wasn’t necessarily best either, Jisung decided, using the time that it took for Felix to convince Changbin to comply to think of their options. They’d still be in an unfamiliar house, and they’d still have difficulty leaving if they had to quickly escape.

And so he decided the best course of action. Ambush. If Minho really did live in the house, they’d wait outside for him to leave, follow him near his destination, and take him down quietly. He’d only be with a few guards at the most, and they’d be able to at least somewhat control the situation. If all went to hell, they could flee.

The car was quiet, Jisung could hear their breaths, slow and heavy. Changbin had his arms folded tightly across his chest, and Jisung didn’t blame him for being upset. After all, spending four hours staring at a driveway wasn’t the most entertaining, and it wasn’t helped at all by the adrenaline of knowing that once someone left this driveway, their mission would begin immediately. But Jisung was confident, whether it was because of his planning or his stupidity, he didn’t know. He was confident that this would work out, and he was confident that if it didn’t work out they could find another option.

“Maybe no one lives here,” Changbin groaned after ten more minutes had passed. “Maybe this place is fucking abandoned and we’re waiting outside for nothing. Text Woojin and tell him your plan flopped, let’s go home.”

“Who invited such a whiny bitch,” Jisung muttered, squinting as he saw movement on the driveway, sighing as a possum ran across the pavement. Changbin scoffed at his comment, shifting the seat to lay back.

“I’m taking a nap. Wake me up when something actually happens,” Changbin grumbled, and Jisung was almost glad that he wouldn’t be complaining anymore. Still, as minutes clicked by, he felt progressively more and more uneasy. He hated to admit it, but Changbin was right. There was a chance that this wasn’t anyone’s home, let alone Minho’s. There was a chance that they were wasting time.

But the chance that they weren’t, the chance that Minho really did live here, overcame the boredom. Jisung sat for thirty minutes longer, chewing on a granola bar as he waited.

Right as he dropped the trash to the floor, he saw the slick glisten of black in the moonlight.

“Wake up,” he hissed, punching Changbin’s arm. Changbin shot up, swallowing as they both watched a beautiful black car turn out of the driveway heading in their direction. They were parked pretty far down, lights off, hidden on the side of the road in the darkness. Despite this, they still wore face masks and baseball hats that shadowed their eyes. The car didn’t slow as it passed them. It was a good thing, it meant that they weren’t recognized. It also meant that Jisung didn’t have time to see who was in the car when it passed.

Without sparing a glance at once another, they jumped into action. Changbin whipped out his phone, and Jisung started the engine and began to pursue. They were far enough back that they could barely see the car, but using the zoom on his phone’s camera, Changbin was able to scurry down the license plate’s number in his notepad.

They had to wait for the right opportunity, and before doing anything reckless they had to make sure that Minho was actually in the car. The windows were surprisingly not tinted, but the darkness of the half mooned night didn’t do them any favors. Changbin used Jisung’s phone to text Woojin the license plate number as Jisung focused on following carefully, far enough back to not seem suspicious, close enough to not lose the car.

They drove past trees for miles until they emerged onto what looked like a more frequented road, followed for longer until they were merging onto a highway. It was now a little past eleven on a Monday night, and the highway was dead besides the two cars driving. Jisung changed lanes to avoid looking suspicious in staying right behind the car, and he used this opportunity to drive a little faster.

“Look into the windows when I drive past,” he quietly said. “I’m gonna have to pass him up if we don’t see anything so that I don’t look sketchy just tailing him like this.”

Changbin nodded, and Jisung accelerated, just barely slowing when they were beside the car. He didn’t look in, he kept his eyes dead on the road. There was a chance that Minho wouldn’t be in the car, that no one familiar would be in the car, that the car and the house belonged to someone irrelevant and that they had wasted time. There was a chance that-

“He’s in there,” Changbin growled, and Jisung slammed on the breaks.

They had a method, taught to them by Yongguk, who told them not to use it unless they were around no one but their victim. It was dangerous, it was risky, and that was exactly why Jisung didn’t tell Changbin that he was going to do it before making this call.

“What the fuck-” Changbin gasped, but Jisung was already in motion again. He twisted the wheel to the left and accelerated right into the left side of Minho’s car. The angle was everything, Yongguk told him to be precise and prepared for things to go wrong if he did this. He held his breath as the car jerked with the impact, just slow enough that the airbags hopefully wouldn’t go off, just fast enough and at just the right angle that Minho’s car would spin. In the span of a second, it was happening. Minho’s car took the force to the side of the hood, and Jisung jerked to the right to avoid the tail slamming into them as the black car began to spin rapidly out of control. It twirled around three times before hitting the barricade on the side of the highway, coming to a dead stop, airbags bursting from the dashboard and slamming into the unfamiliar faces in the passenger and driver’s seats.

Jisung slammed on the breaks. Changbin released a quick breath as he was jerked forward, but Jisung was already clicking off his seatbelt and yanking open the door. “Come on, let’s go!” he barked, and despite seeming flustered and confused, Changbin was quick to follow.

They ran to the car with the smoking hood, and Changbin took the lead, yanking open the back door on the passenger side, reaching in and grabbing the arm in front of him, dragging Lee Minho out of the backseat. The man stumbled violently as he was pulled across the highway, likely dizzy from the spinning and in shock from the impact of the car hitting the barricade. There was blood rushing from his nose, and his eyes were lost, unfocused. Changbin tugged him harshly to their own car, slamming him against it.

Jisung in the meantime rushed to the driver’s door, throwing it open and grabbing the handcuffs from the cup holder. Minho was beginning to regain his senses slowly, beginning to struggle a little, and Changbin held him still as Jisung clipped the cuffs around his wrists, locking them behind his back tightly enough to cut into skin.

“Hey,” Minho slurred, and that was when Jisung realized that Minho wasn’t just dizzy from the crash, he was also drunk. This made things easier, and he opened the door for Changbin to shove Minho in, climbing in next to him to hold him steady like they had when they’d kidnapped Hyunjin.

Minho was thrashing when Jisung hurried into the driver’s seat. “Hey, hey, who the fuck are you,” Minho growled at Changbin, his voice drawled and angry. “Get your filthy fucking hands off of me you-”

“Shut the fuck up,” Changbin snarled, his irritation vivid as he drew his knife and held it up as a threat, a threat that Minho didn’t even notice in his hurry to thrash around.

As Minho yelled, Jisung glanced briefly to the smoking car. Hopefully it didn’t catch fire. Hopefully the driver and other passenger survived. He didn’t know what he’d do to forgive himself, to ask Yongguk to forgive him, if he found out from the news that the two people remaining in the car had died. They were told to never kill. He made a promise, but he didn’t have time to go check if they were okay, not when them being okay meant that he’d be in danger.

He drove off quickly.

Chapter Text

It was a struggle to bring Minho into the house when he could barely walk straight, thrashing around so much that he was nearly throwing them all into walls, but between the two of them, they managed. Felix was well aware that he needed to be hidden in his room by the time Changbin and Jisung returned from the hit just in case it was successful. The two alphas were able to maneuver Minho up the stairs somehow, having to half drag him up. Minho was beginning to grow weaker, likely due to the alcohol in his system weighing on his consciousness, and within a few minutes, the man was strapped to the chair, glaring up at the two with blood drying from his nose and hair mussed up.

“My guys are gonna come for you. You think they don’t remember where you live?” Minho shot out. At least it seemed like he was regaining some composure. About an hour ago he didn’t even recognize them, but he seemed to regain the memory quickly upon seeing the familiar house, the familiar room that he was now locked in. Jisung glanced to Changbin uneasily. They had to do this quickly, and would likely have to evacuate the house for a little while afterwards. Minho’s guards weren’t people that they wanted to mess with, and in turn, not people that they wanted to be on the hit list of.

Changbin seemed indifferent. “Your guards can’t save you if you’re in jail,” he said blankly, walking to the table and sorting through the tools there.

Minho scoffed. “Jail? Like you have that kind of authority.” He spit out a bitter laugh, shaking his head. “This is a joke. I intentionally hired the weakest hitmen I could find just in case this might happen. Once my guys get here, both of you, and your omega, will be torn to pieces before you can even draw your-”

His words were drowned out by his own gasp as Jisung’s fist connected solidly with his face. He would’ve been knocked to the floor by a blow like that if it weren’t for the chair keeping him in place, and Minho coughed as blood began to trickle from his mouth. He spit it out, eyes narrowing sharply.

“You’re not here to make empty threats,” Jisung growled. “Have you considered that your guards won’t even know where to look for you? They didn’t see us taking you. The two in the car are probably dead by now, since the thing looked like it was about to combust when we drove off.”

Minho rolled his eyes, but Jisung sensed the unease behind his expression. “You don’t kill people, you said that before,” Minho muttered. Jisung smiled. Minho was entirely right, they wouldn’t kill, but Minho didn’t need to know the boundaries of that statement.

“We don’t kill people directly, sure, but if your guards got into a messy little car accident, was that really our fault?”

Minho’s teeth dug down into his lip. He was fuming, fists clenched so tightly that his knuckles were turning white. “What the fuck do you want from me? I paid you plenty for such an easy job, and…” his words slowly trailed off, and his narrowed eyes ignited with realization. “Are you fucking kidding me?” he laughed bitterly, “This is about Hyunjin, isn’t it?”

Jisung frowned, didn’t respond as Changbin rounded the chair with the same knife and hammer they’d threatened Hyunjin with. Minho was obviously trying not to look at the tools, but Jisung didn’t miss how his eyes would flicker downwards every second or so. They didn’t reply, he could figure it out on his own, and after a few seconds, Minho groaned, “Really? All of this for some bitch?”

Once again, they didn’t respond. The best tactic of getting someone to talk was to let them ramble until the right information was spilling out. Jisung crossed his arms, and Changbin put the small hammer into his back pocket, flicking open the knife and testing the sharpness against the edge of his fingernail. Minho’s eyes narrowed.

“Well you’ll be damned if I tell you where he is now. If you’d just called like a normal fucking human being, I would’ve told you. I might’ve even bought that bitch back for you, for some money.”

Jisung’s eyes flickered up. “Bought him back?”

Minho rolled his eyes. “You really think that I kept him for this long? He was cute, sure, but I’m not one for keeping pets. But if you really want to know what happened to him, where he went, all of that, I can tell you. Just let me out of this fucking chair and let’s have a civil conversation.”

Changbin and Jisung slowly glanced towards each other. Neither moved towards the chair.

Jisung nodded and turned his eyes back to Minho. “You’re not the one making demands here. I’ll tell you what’s going to happen. You tell us where Hyunjin is, and we let you go unscathed. Your guards don’t know where you are. We can fuck you up pretty badly before they catch on.”

Jisung then stepped forward, grabbing the hammer from Changbin’s pocket on his way and slowly twirling it between each hand. “Who do you think fucked up Hyunjin’s foot so badly that he couldn’t walk for months? You wanna have a broken foot, too? I know how to break bones so that they don’t heal properly, you’ve seen it by now. I’ll break both of your hands, maybe a few ribs, I’m not afraid to get dirty with this.” He felt pride in how Minho flinched when he pretended to take a swing towards his head. He stopped the motion right before the hammer made contact, withdrawing his hand, and Minho growled furiously. “You want to talk civilly? This is the closest you’re gonna get. Is it really worth keeping your mouth shut to hide someone you obviously don’t care about?”

There was a pause, seconds passed, one, two, three, and then Jisung was shrugging. “Have it your way.” He knelt down. He’d start with the same foot that he’d broken on Hyunjin, then move to the other one. It’d be convenient if Minho couldn’t physically run anyway. They’d break his hands next, leave him entirely useless. He’d talk by then. And if he didn’t, they’d just cut him up until he did.

Right as he lifted the hammer, Minho yelled, “Fucking fine! I’ll talk!”

Jisung pulled back his swing, standing and crossing his arms once more. A few more seconds passed of uncomfortable silence. Changbin sighed, “If you’re gonna talk then do it. I’m getting impatient.”

Minho glared at the ground. “Like I said, you really think that I kept him? I’ll tell you exactly what I did to him. I trained him properly, like you two couldn’t. Taught him to beg when it was time to and to shut up when it was time to. And then I sold him off to the highest offer. I got rid of him weeks ago, I’m shocked that you’re only just now coming to get him. Poor baby thought he was abandoned, I heard him crying every night from the dark room I left him in for days on end.”

Jisung swallowed. The guilt was building again. Ultimately, they did this to Hyunjin by accepting Minho’s request in the first place. Knowing just how bad it had gotten for him hurt in a heavy, overbearing way. They had to save him, there was no question now.

“I can’t even tell you if he’s still alive,” Minho muttered. “The person I sold him to likes to play with his toys, after all. But you know what, I don’t care. If you let me out now, I’ll give you an address, a name, everything you need to fucking know to find that dumb bitch. He isn’t worth my time anyway.”

“I’m not letting you out until you tell us, and that’s final,” Changbin said darkly. “I don’t care if we have to coat this floor with your blood, you’re going to fucking talk.”

Minho huffed, weighing his options. After a few seconds of watching Jisung fidget with the hammer, he gave in.

“I sold him to a man named Jung Taekwoon. He buys and sells all the time, so if Hyunjin isn’t there anymore, that’s not on me. His place of operation is on the west side of town, the same port that the Jung Shipping Company is located at. Now let me fucking go.”

Changbin nodded, stepping forward. This was all that they needed to know. They could ask Woojin to do some research beyond this to find the exact location.

Minho sighed with relief, expecting to be released, but Changbin’s punch was faster than Jisung could even comprehend until Minho’s chin was falling to his chest, his eyes slipping closed instantly.

“Let’s get rid of him,” Changbin said lowly, “And then we can go.”

Chapter Text

His stomach was louder than normal today, ached a little more than usual. He shifted and winced as the cuff dug into his ankle. With all of what’s happened, he should feel more than he does. He should be angry, he should be afraid, and he recognizes that something in him had to have broken for him to not feel much of anything. He exhaled softly, letting out a gentle cough; It was the only way for him to tell that he still had a voice, since he wasn’t allowed to speak anymore.

At least he wasn’t alone like he was at Minho’s, but he still felt isolated. He was treated differently than the others. Taekwoon said that he was more popular than the others were, and that was something that probably should’ve disgusted him. But the weight of misery was deep in his stomach at all times, melding with the hunger, and nothing, not even disgust or anger, could permeate it.

There was soft crying somewhere beyond what he could see in the darkness of the large room. A newcomer, probably, since anyone who’d been around long knew that making as much noise as crying made would get you lashed. Taekwoon would probably come down soon to take care of it. Hyunjin swallowed tightly at the thought. While he couldn’t feel disgust, anger, or fear any longer, he could still feel pity, and he felt it strongly for everyone in this room, everyone besides himself.

He didn’t pity himself. If he could believe one thing that Minho had said to him before giving him to Taekwoon, it was that he did this to himself. He involved himself in this dark world blindly, he didn’t think, and this was his punishment. Taekwoon said that some of the others have died since he arrived, but that he wouldn’t let Hyunjin die, that he was too special. Hyunjin wondered when that would change. He didn’t care either way. If he died, he would be free. If he lived… Well, at least there were some good things. He felt good when they touched him. He felt satisfied when he was finally fed. In all of his despair, he could be grateful for the little things, the things that he once took advantage of. In all of his despair, he didn’t beg to be free like the others sometimes did.

‘My good, good alpha,’ Taekwoon would praise when carrying Hyunjin to and from the client rooms. “Always making me so much money.”

And Hyunjin would feel good, would feel worthy. And that would be good enough until it wasn’t. And then, whether weeks or months or years from now, he could die without regrets.

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“Are you sure you’re already ready to start another case…? You literally just got back today, you should be directing traffic or… or… I don’t know!”

Chan’s rambling was blurred in his ears, as Woojin’s focus was entirely elsewhere. The stranger had messaged him an address, told him to be ready to apprehend the person who took his brother. The stranger had emphasized that they would handle everything else, not to put the suspect on trial, to just throw him in jail. It was entirely illegal to just imprison someone without a trial. But Woojin was considering trying to slip around those details. He could frame someone if he had to. All he needed to know was what they did wrong, with evidence. A simple interrogation would be good enough.

They were trudging through a forest, and Chan was getting less and less excited about Woojin rejoining the police force and more apprehensive about what the hell they were doing.

“You said someone sent in a tip, right? Why is it just us coming then? Shouldn’t we bring at least another officer or two just in case? What was this tip even about?”

“You’ll want to go home if I tell you,” Woojin sighed, stepping over a fallen branch. He too had his doubts. What if this was all for nothing? But this was about Hyunjin, and it was worth it to try.

Chan groaned loudly. “Woojin, come on, it doesn’t make sense that-”

Woojin stopped to look at his phone, and Chan nearly ran into him. He’d gotten a text hours ago, an address that he’d typed into his online maps to find lead to a rural area outside of some farmlands. Now, after clambering through the brush of the forest for nearly an hour, they’d come to a clearing. The icon on his map showed that they were at the designated location.

He began to type.

‘I’m here, but I don’t see anyone.’

The response was nearly immediate, as if copied and pasted, as if waiting for him.

‘Look in the ditch by the treeline. Before you do, listen to this.’

An audio file popped up under the text, and apprehensively, Woojin clicked on it.

Immediately, a male voice burst from his phone.

“I sold him to a man named Jung Taekwoon. He buys and sells all the time, so if Hyunjin isn’t there anymore, that’s not on me.”

Both Woojin and Chan froze, and before either could say a thing, the audio continued choppily.

“Like I said, you really think that I kept him? I’ll tell you exactly what I did to him. I trained him properly-” The audio cut, then continued. “Taught him to beg when it was time to and to shut up when it was time to. And then I sold him off to the highest offer.”

Woojin was trembling. Chan’s eyes were wide, his lips parted like he wanted to say something but the words were frozen, stale, as the voice continued.

“Poor baby thought he was abandoned, I heard him crying every night from the dark room I left him in for days on end.”

The bar showing progress in the audio file came to the end, and the sound stopped. Crickets chirped, the trees rustled in the wind. All else was silent. There was a knot, heavy and thick in Woojin’s throat, as he tried over and over to comprehend the nightmare that had been confirmed true by the voice over the phone.

Hyunjin had been kidnapped. Hyunjin was suffering. Hyunjin was being sold. With no confirmation that Hyunjin was even still alive or not, he felt his legs collapsing under him. Chan rushed forward and held onto him to keep him from falling into the dirt.

“Woojin,” Chan breathed, but there was no way that he’d find the words to say. “Woojin,” he repeated, as if he were trying to find some sort of comfort, some sort of ulterior explanation. There was no use in trying. The facts were confirmed by the audio they’d just heard. With fear in his heart, dread, anxiety, shame, Woojin shakily broke free from Chan’s grasp and took slow steps towards the ditch directly ahead of them across the clearing. His legs felt like jelly, he felt like he was going to vomit, but he had to see who the stranger over the line had given to them, who had done this to his little brother.

Chan hurried after him, but Woojin was already looking over the dip in the ground.

Sure enough, there was a man there, bound and gagged. His white button-up was grass stained, his hair was messy with twigs and dirt. Looking at his eyes, Woojin already knew who this was. Those eyes were exactly the same as the eyes of the child he saw in the search he’d done for the stranger. This was Lee Minho.

And beyond the dread, anxiety, and shame, rage took over.

He was jumping down into the ditch, falling to his knees and stumbling to his feet. Lee Minho jerked as Woojin came into view, began to struggle to no avail with his hands and feet tied with thick, rigid rope. He began to yell through the gag, but Woojin didn’t care what he had to say. He grabbed Minho by the shirt collar and jerked him up before slamming him back down against the ground.

“You fucking- You fucking disgusting piece of trash!” he screamed. Chan was running down, saying something, but Woojin was deaf with anger, shoving Chan away from him so hard that the other officer fell to the ground. All of his attention was on Minho, the man’s terrified eyes and the scent of his expensive cologne only fueling Woojin’s fire further. Woojin grabbed Minho tightly by the hair before ripping off the gag. Minho choked as it was torn from his mouth.

“Talk,” Woojin snarled. “Talk or I will break every bone in your body until you do.”

“I, I swear I don’t know what’s happening-” Minho began.

He didn’t realize that he’d just confirmed their suspicion. The voice was the same. This really was the person who was speaking in the audio file.

“I’m going to fucking kill you,” Woojin fumed, “but first you better fucking tell me where my brother is!”

“Brother… You’re…”

Chan’s arms were back on his shoulders, tighter this time, he was rambling that Woojin had to calm down, to get it together, but Woojin wasn’t having it. He shoved Chan off again, curling his hands around Minho’s thin neck. “Now!” he yelled.

“I already told Jisung where he is! Jisung is going to get him, I swear, I swear!” Minho gasped, his words fading into a gag as Woojin’s fists tightened around his throat.

“Woojin!” Chan screamed, desperate now. “You’re going to kill him, you can’t fucking kill someone!”

“He’s the one who took Hyunjin!” Woojin retaliated, his voice thick and choked. He didn’t realize that hot tears were running down his face until he saw one drip onto Minho’s shirt. Minho was gasping now, dry, fragile attempts at inhaling. Woojin let go of his throat just enough to give him breath before sobbing, “Just tell me he’s alive, just fucking tell me that Hyunjin is alive-”

Minho was gagging on air, his voice raspy like gravel as he replied, “He’s alive, I think he’s alive-”

“You think?!” Woojin snarled. He reached to his belt. “You fucking think he’s alive? You should fucking know!” he reached to his belt, grabbed his gun, held it to Minho’s head. The man was crying now, shaking his head quickly.

“Fuck, don’t do this, please, please,” Minho begged. Woojin didn’t care. He’d made up his mind. The person who put Hyunjin through so much suffering, the person who did everything. He would kill him here and now.

A sharp pain shot through his entire body so suddenly that the anger flickered away. Minho jerked very violently, very suddenly, and Woojin was dropping his gun and collapsing on top of the other alpha.

“I’m sorry,” he could hear Chan gasping. He couldn’t look behind him to know what had happened, but he had experience with this. He’d been tased before, it was a part of officer training. He’d never expected that Chan would ever tase him. But his body was tight, so tight that it hurt, and Minho’s eyes were dull and glossy.

“Requesting backup at my location,” Chan said hurriedly over his walkie. “Immediate, I need at least three officers to apprehend two alphas.”

Woojin was exhausted. He didn’t know if it was the tase or the anger that left him this way. But he couldn’t move a muscle, and so he let his eyes fall closed.

Chapter Text

Woojin woke up in the passenger seat of a police car. Chan was in the driver’s seat, glancing over when the elder shifted. “Good morning,” Chan sighed. Woojin bowed his head. The guilt immediately hit him, now that his anger had faded.

“I’m sorry for being… like that,” Woojin whispered, staring down at his hands and noticing upon looking down that his pants were torn at the knees, that his knees were scraped and a little bloodied. He wondered how much he’d injured himself in his desperation to get to Minho. While his body was still stiff from being tased, he didn’t feel any pain, which was good.

“Don’t worry about it. I convinced the other officers to let you off the hook, but they wanted to give you shit for indecent behavior. Be more careful next time. Regardless, Lee Minho is in a cell right now, waiting on an interrogation. The chief doesn’t want you involved, but I can interrogate him, so let me know anything you want me to say and I’ll write it down once we get to the station.” Woojin nodded, feeling a little relieved. At least they apprehended Minho at all, with so little evidence besides Woojin’s word. Chan might’ve convinced them to, and Woojin was grateful that Chan would take his side despite probably not knowing much of what was going on.

“So… I need you to explain all of this,” Chan said softly. “How did you know that Minho was the person who took Hyunjin? And how did you know to find him in that ditch? It looked like someone had already gotten to him before we showed up, given how he was tied up already.”

Woojin sucked in a breath. “I have an anonymous tipper. Someone who seems to know Hyunjin’s situation, though I’m not sure how they know. They’re the one who told me about Minho, they’re the one that told me to go to the forest, and they’re the one that sent that recording. All of their information seems to line up, so…”

“And you trusted that?” Chan gaped. “No offense, like, it worked out in the end. But that’s so risky, Woojin. Don’t you think that someone who knows so much about Hyunjin must be somehow involved?”

Woojin nodded, responding softly, “I know. Believe me, I’ve thought it through endlessly. But I’m to the point where I don’t care how they know what’s going on. I just want Hyunjin back home and safe.”

Chan was quiet for a while, and the road noise seemed louder in the silence between them. Finally, Chan said, “Just be careful, okay? You know that I’m here for you. I understand that you’re desperate Woojin, but keep your head on straight. Let’s do this together, yeah?”

Woojin nodded. “Yeah.”

Chan then hummed, “We still have leads, you know. Minho said in that recording that Hyunjin’s with a man named Jung Taekwoon. We can look in the database for someone with that name once we get back to the station. I wasn’t sure if you wanted to go home and rest first or-”

“No, let’s go figure this out. We need to save Hyunjin as soon as possible,” Woojin assured. “I’m fine, I’m not that tired anyway.”

“Okay. Another thing I caught was that Minho mentioned someone named Jisung. We don’t have a last name though, and while Jung Taekwoon is a much less common name, there are hundreds of Jisungs in just this town alone. We’d at least need a last name to find whoever it is.”

Woojin did barely remember Minho saying ‘Jisung’ while they were struggling on the ground. Chan continued, “Minho said that Jisung was going to get Hyunjin. It makes me think that this Jisung is your anonymous tipper, but we can’t be sure. I wouldn’t ask him, it may make him clam up. But let’s do some research on these people, as much as we can.

They pulled up to the station, and Woojin clambered out of the car. He felt restless, and yet, for the first time in months, he felt hopeful. Afraid that this hope was based in something uncertain, he tried to rationalize. But heading up the elevator, walking to their office, he found himself smiling for the first time in so long that he could barely remember. They were bounds closer to saving Hyunjin. He could only hope that they were successful.

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Their first hit in months felt the heaviest, as they slipped on their face masks and adjusted the guns at their hips. Felix sat on the couch and watched with solemn anxiety. Normally they had more to go off of than a name and a location. But nothing came up when they searched ‘Jung Taekwoon,’ and the only way to make sure that Minho hadn’t lied to them was to go find out directly.

Felix had cooked them something, but the smell of the eggs and the bacon was almost nauseating with how diminished their appetites were. Changbin still ate, encouraged Jisung to try to. But Jisung knew that he wouldn’t be able to stomach anything. Why was he so anxious? Something in the back of his mind warned him that this was a sign, that his anxiety was a foretelling of something bad to come. He tried to quiet the thought. He was anxious because this time the outcome was a life or death issue. Taking Minho felt nice, scaring him felt better. But this wouldn’t be their usual kidnapping hit. They were kidnapping someone that they wanted to stay safe. They were actually trying to save someone this time.

If they arrived to find nothing, they had options. Woojin should have found Minho by now, and Jisung was sure that he could convince the officer to interrogate Hyunjin’s real location out of him if he hadn’t already. But if they found that Hyunjin was already dead, it would be out of their hands. And Jisung sat with the weight of knowing that his actions could’ve caused someone to suffer for months until their death. If Hyunjin was dead, how would he repent? How would he apologize? If Hyunjin was dead, it meant that he didn’t keep his promise in time, his promise to come save him. Two months was enough time for big changes to have happened. With all of his heart, he could only pray that Hyunjin had survived it all.

“You ready?” Changbin asked grimly. Jisung gave a tiny nod.

Felix sucked in a breath before standing, taking quick paces to wrap his arms around Changbin’s waist from behind, resting his head on the alpha’s back. “You’re leaving, then? To get Hyunjin?” he asked. There was worry in his tone, worry and yet still a little hope. Changbin frowned.

“Remember, we can’t expect him to have survived this long. If we don’t come back with him then…”

“I know,” Felix sighed, squeezing Changbin tighter. “Don’t be too upset.”

Jisung watched them quietly. There was another option too. Anytime they went towards a hit, they were risking their lives. They knew nothing about this location or this Taekwoon person. They could be walking into a trap set by Minho for all they knew. They were risking more than just not finding Hyunjin, and that was scary in and of itself. Felix squeezed Changbin as tightly as he could before releasing, letting the alpha turn around and run a hand through the omega’s hair. Felix sighed, letting his eyes fall closed at the touch. “It’ll be okay regardless,” Changbin promised. “We’ll be back soon.”

 

It felt ominous. Jisung tried to ignore the deep feeling of anxiety in his stomach, and when Changbin turned to him with a nod, he quietly nodded back. And with that, they walked out the door.

Chapter Text

The port was dimly lit, a few of the lights on their posts flickering in the darkness of night, a few completely turned off. Jisung thought about turning on his flashlight upon getting out of the car, but decided that it may be best to just let his eyes adjust. Minho wouldn’t have had a chance to warn Taekwoon that they were coming, and Jisung doubted that the man would expect them after two months of having Hyunjin with no fault. They could only hope that Hyunjin hadn’t been sold off to someone else, or worse. They could only hope that Minho had given them a real tip instead of sending them into a trap.

Still, they were careful. With a hand already resting on the gun in its holster, Jisung took careful steps across the concrete of the port. The ocean waves were slamming against the walls somewhere nearby, and upon stepping up a flight of creaky wooden stairs, Jisung could see the black water about a hundred feet out across a field of concrete.

His eyes were adjusting in the dull light. He could see a number of shipping containers the size of their house, and wondered briefly if Taekwoon would be in one of these. How would they know which one was the right one? Would they have to check every one? Minho didn’t give them a detailed description, just leading them to this port. It felt wrong. His anxiety was skyrocketing, and he tried to dim it for the sake of staying attentive.

“Let’s split up, we’ll cover more grounds that way,” Changbin whispered. Jisung didn’t agree, didn’t agree at all. He shook his head, but Changbin was already walking away. This was bad. They were literally in the territory of the enemy whether Minho was setting them up or not, and now they were each alone. Jisung took a deep breath before taking careful steps in the opposite direction of the way Changbin had gone. He was scared, though he’d barely admit it to himself. This felt risky, this felt too quiet, there were no guards or honestly anyone out at all. The port was quiet despite the loud crashing of the waves against the concrete wall.

Jisung made his way to one of the shipping containers, circled around it but didn’t find a door. He pressed his ear to it and heard nothing. Hoping that this was enough of a sign of lack of life inside, he moved on. The port was large, and the many containers formed something akin to a maze throughout it. He swerved through each one, trying to make a mental map of where he was. It fell through. He was now lost and alone in the darkness, the street lamps’ light not reaching this far in. If someone was behind him, or even far enough in front of him, he wouldn’t know until the last second, and that was terrifying to consider.

It felt like a full hour had passed, but he didn’t risk pulling out his phone to check the time. Instead he continued until something had him pausing. It was a light up ahead, a square shaped light, and only once he approached did he see it.

The window of a large concrete building was lit up in the darkness, the building otherwise dim throughout. He wouldn’t have noticed it if not for this light, and Jisung had a feeling in his gut that this would be the place if the place actually existed on this port. He whipped out his phone, having dimmed the screen to the lowest setting already, and typed a quick message to Changbin.

‘I found a building. It looks occupied. I don’t remember where I am to tell you where it is, but I’m going in.’

He took careful, quiet steps. If there was a place for guards to be stationed, it would be here. From a distance, he began to make a wide circle around the building, hiding behind shipping containers and dodging the lights that he passed to stay in the shadows. He didn’t see anyone, but more importantly, he did see a back door. The light through the window of this door wasn’t turned on, which Jisung hoped meant that no one was in the room. Still, as he approached, he kept his gun on him.

He couldn’t have hoped that the door would be unlocked, and sure enough, it wasn’t. Yongguk taught him well though, and he’d practiced enough, slowly and nervously removing his hand from the gun on his belt and instead reaching into the pocket at his side for his tools. He began to fidget with the lock, wincing every time the doorknob jingled with the motion of him picking at it. After minutes of messing with the complicated lock, he both felt and heard the final click. Slipping his tools back into his pocket, he turned the knob and opened the door.

It hit him then what he was about to do. He was about to enter a dark building, a building that he knew was frequented by the light in the front room. There was no certainty that this wasn’t a trap, or that Hyunjin would be inside. Changbin didn’t know his location, and he was alone.

Knowing all of this, he swallowed and took his first step in.

It took a while for his eyes to adjust to this level of darkness, and Jisung closed the door behind him and let his eyes focus for a minute. With no street lamps to give light, he was now in total darkness. It could be a blessing or a curse.

The room was filled with random furniture, an antique desk pressed against the wall, an office chair in the center of the room. It felt cluttered, like a room used for storage. Jisung passed two king-sized mattresses stacked on top of each other, radiating a weird odor that he didn’t want to think about. He reached a door and turned the handle slowly, cracking it open. Dim light filtered from the hallway that the door led into.

This was it. This was where he could get caught, and he drew his gun. He wouldn’t kill if he didn’t have to. He’d never killed before. But he could shoot out someone’s leg or shoulder if he had the time to aim, and he inhaled, exhaled, once, twice, before stepping into the hall.

The hallway was long, and there were a number of rooms on each wall, every door closed. Jisung wondered what a building like this was doing on a port, but he figured it was so hard to find for a reason. It looked like a warehouse from the outside, but the inside was carpeted, the walls had a flowery wallpaper, the lights were dim and warm. He walked down the hall slowly, carefully, and froze as a loud voice echoed from one of the rooms. It was a moan, and Jisung suddenly felt excruciatingly uncomfortable and anxious all at once. There were people here, and they were here for… and if Minho had trained Hyunjin the way he’d seemed to, the way he wanted them to, if Hyunjin was here for sex, then…

What if Hyunjin was in any one of these rooms right now? Jisung felt sick. He was the one who put Hyunjin here. It was their fault that Minho had gotten hands on him in the first place. Jisung continued down the hall, turning a corner and immediately whipping back the way he came. There was a man walking down the hall in the opposite direction of where he hid, and Jisung waited for a door to slam before apprehensively following in the man’s footsteps. There had to be some clue as to where Hyunjin was in this building. He pondered it for the minute that it took to walk down the hall… before taking a deep breath and laying his hand on the handle of the last set of doors. These doors were double doors, different than the others, nicer in design. This room was different in some way, and Jisung would take the risk, his gun ready as he slowly cracked the door open.

Immediately, a voice called out, “Come in.” It was a sultry voice, soft and smooth. Jisung contemplated running, but he had to get it together. The only way to find Hyunjin was to interrogate one of these people. He’d hold the man at gunpoint and get an answer quickly. The lower half of his face was covered by the face mask. He hopefully wouldn’t be recognized.

He threw the door open and held his gun up to the person he saw behind the desk. It looked like an office, and in the large, antique chair behind a large, antique desk was a man with catlike eyes and dark hair.

“Oh?” the man said softly, voice tilted with a tone of surprise, though his face showed no response to the gun pointed at him. Jisung narrowed his eyes.

“Who are you?” he asked the man.

The alpha across from him chuckled. “Who am I? I should be asking you that. Coming into my establishment with a loaded gun. Where are your manners?”

“Tell me who you are or I’ll…” Jisung trailed off. This wasn’t what mattered. “Tell me something else, if not your name. Where the fuck is Hwang Hyunjin?”

This made the man’s eyes widen in something that Jisung read as amusement. “Hyunjin?” he laughed. “Oh, you’re either Jisung or Changbin. I was told that you might come.” The man then rose from his chair, tilting his head to each side, a soft pop echoing from his neck as he did. “I’ll tell you what you asked before, since I know your name now, at least close enough. I’m Taekwoon. I’m sure you’re familiar with me, given that you found me here. Did you torture it out of Minho? It’s a shame, he was the provider of most of my toys. Is he dead?”

“You didn’t answer my question,” Jisung growled. “I don’t have time for conversation right now. Tell me where Hyunjin is, and I won’t put a bullet through your skull.”

Taekwoon shrugged. “Why would I give away the location of my best seller?" he began to pace, sighing, "You don’t get it, profit is everything in this sort of job. Hyunjinnie makes me so much money lately, I would never give him up.”

Jisung’s blood ran cold. His finger twitched on the trigger. This man was the scum of the earth. He’d shoot out his legs first, let him suffer and leave him to go find Hyunjin himself. But Taekwoon was talking again, and Jisung froze at his words.

“Go ahead and shoot if you want. You have two seconds before I win.”

What? And then Jisung felt it. There was a knife at his throat, and someone curled a thick arm around his chest, yanking him back to be pressed against a strong body. Taekwoon laughed as Jisung’s heart began to race. He struggled to aim and fired, but the bullet shot into the wall two feet from Taekwoon’s shoulder, and the person holding him still grabbed his arm with the hand that didn’t hold the knife and twisted, hard. Jisung yelped as a pop echoed through the room; He held his breath as the pain was like fire and ice all at once, and the gun fell from his hand.

“You know, you’re kind of cute yourself, from what I can see of your face. Puffy cheeks, kitten eyes. I could take another alpha. It’s a shame that I don’t have Minho anymore to train newcomers,” Taekwoon cooed. Jisung’s eyes widened and he struggled all the more, gasping as his arm throbbed with unbearable pain. The person holding the knife to his throat pulled it away to get a better grip on him, and Jisung felt hot tears dripping down his cheeks. This was bad, this was really fucking bad. He had no control anymore, he couldn’t fight in this position, how could he have been so stupid as to not pay attention to the open door behind him?! Taekwoon smirked playfully, before grinning, “Hyukkie, take our new toy to the basement for now.” He then locked eyes with Jisung, shrugging. “You’ll get to see Hyunjin this way, it’s a win win right? Maybe Hyunjin can teach you how to act. You’ll figure it out.”

Jisung screamed in anger, in pain, in frustration. This couldn’t happen, he couldn’t let them get to him like this. He was pulled from the room from behind, stumbling over his own feet, crying out as thick pressure was pressed on his damaged arm. Taekwoon waved to him with a chuckle, and Jisung swore that his first kill would be the man in front of him.

He didn’t get the chance. A bang echoed from behind him and he was released, collapsing to the floor. Another bang and Taekwoon was gasping, dropping to his knees, reaching up to clutch at the upper flesh of his arm, where blood began to run down. Jisung turned around weakly and sighed with relief as Changbin was reaching out a hand to help him up. “Come on, hurry,” Changbin growled, and Jisung stumbled up to his feet. They stepped over the man on the ground, the one that had been holding Jisung still before, and Jisung noticed that his eyes were open and yet dull, glassy. His stomach dropped as he realized what this meant, that Changbin had just killed someone. The elder looked focused, stern. Did he know…? Jisung immediately decided that if Changbin didn’t know, he wouldn’t tell him, but it was terrifying to realize that someone who had been breathing down his neck moments before was now not breathing at all because of them. He tried not to think about it, rushing away from Taekwoon’s pained groans, and following Changbin weakly down the hall. One of the doors was cracked open, and Changbin hurriedly said, “I think I found where Hyunjin is, but I had to incapacitate five people to get to him. I just broke some bones and knocked some heads, so we need to hurry before those guys wake up.”

Again, Jisung suffered with the knowledge that Changbin surely didn’t have, that a man had just died by his hand. But there were things to think about that were more urgent. They entered through the doorway and found a flight of stairs leading downwards. As Changbin lead the way into the darkness of the basement, Jisung pulled out his phone and turned on the flashlight, knowing that it was risky to have it on, knowing that it was even riskier to not be able to see in unfamiliar territory.

As they reached the bottom step, the first thing they could catch was the heavy scent of omegas in heat. Jisung groaned at the same time as Changbin, who sucked in a breath and hurried forward. That was when they saw them, and Jisung felt dizzy from the sight. This couldn’t be real.

There were at least ten omegas chained to the walls. A few were asleep, a few were staring at them with mouths agape and wide eyes. A girl omega gave a soft sob, and another one, a boy, shushed her quickly, his terrified eyes and trembling hands only barely visible through the light of the flashlight. Changbin was already stepping ahead, his steps slow and unsure. They were both in shock. The omegas were all thin, too thin, fragile even, but their hair was well kept and they all wore nice clothing. This was absolutely a sex house, and Jisung felt so much pity and anger for these poor omegas that it was almost unbearable.

Suddenly Changbin froze, and Jisung almost ran into him, looking over his shoulder and freezing as well.

In the back corner of the room, with chains around his ankles and wrists, shivering in his sleep, was Hyunjin.

Chapter Text

Suddenly Changbin froze, and Jisung almost ran into him, looking over his shoulder and freezing as well.

In the back corner of the room, with chains around his ankles and wrists, fast asleep, was Hyunjin. He looked so different, almost unrecognizable with how thin he was, with how his bangs reached over his eyes now, with how many bruises littered his arms and what they could see of his legs past a pair of skin-tight shorts. He was shivering in his sleep, his thin shirt nearly worthless in such a cold room. Changbin stood still, frozen. Jisung rushed forward.

He knelt and immediately pulled Hyunjin into his arms. The taller alpha’s skin was cold against his own, and slow breaths were the only way to confirm that he was even alive until a faded cough pressed past chapped lips. Jisung felt himself shaking a little but did his best to stay as calm as possible. He had to be cool-headed. “Hyunjin,” he whispered. “Hyunjin, wake up. It’s me.”

Hyunjin stirred. It was when he tilted his neck that Jisung noticed the bites. There were teeth marks littered all over the side of his neck, down to his shoulder and collarbone. Two looked fresh, scabbing over, while the rest were messy scars. Jisung cursed. They should’ve come sooner than this, he should’ve gotten himself together before Hyunjin had to get hurt like this.

Slowly, dark eyes opened. Hyunjin blinked once, twice, before his eyes came into focus, shifted upwards, and widened upon seeing who was holding him. His hand trembled as he reached it up, and the chains clattered at the motion. His lips parted but no sound came out as he gently placed his hand on Jisung’s cheek. Jisung attempted to smile, weak and fragile, whispering, “Hey.”

Hearing his voice, confirming that he was real, Hyunjin began to tremble, and almost immediately a tear slipped down his face. He wrapped his arms tightly around Jisung’s torso and buried his face into his chest, the sobs growing stronger as he did. Jisung used his good arm to hug him back, resting his chin on Hyunjin’s head. “I’m sorry we took so long,” Jisung whispered.

Changbin slowly approached, kneeling down to watch them before reaching out and rubbing Hyunjin’s back, saying softly, “Let’s get you out of here.”

It was easier said than done. Hyunjin refused to let go of Jisung, only clutching tighter when the alpha tried to pull away, and so Changbin took it upon himself to inspect Hyunjin’s chains. They weren’t weak per se, definitely strong enough to restrain a person, but they were still weak enough to break with a tool, and Changbin drew out the small hammer that he kept on his belt for interrogations. “Hold him still,” he told Jisung, who nodded, carding his fingers through Hyunjin’s messy hair. Taking the first chain in his hand, the one that connected to Hyunjin’s right ankle, Changbin pressed it against the floor and lifted the hammer, slamming it down.

The chain dented, but didn’t crack. It took three more hits that were too loud for comfort before the link finally crumbled and Hyunjin’s leg was free. Minutes of hammering relentlessly passed, and finally, Hyunjin was detached from the wall.

Hyunjin was still crying, his body shaking with each sob, and Jisung gave his hair one last soft pet before attempting to stand, it took him standing completely for Hyunjin to reluctantly let go. “Hyunjin, can you walk?” Changbin asked. Slowly, Hyunjin shook his head, glancing down to the foot that they’d broken months ago.

Jisung winced. If it was still damaged after all of these months, damaged enough that he couldn’t walk at all, he wasn’t sure if it would ever heal. “He looked to Changbin, muttering, “I think my arm is either out of socket or broken. I don’t know what Taekwoon’s guard did to it but… Can you carry him?”

Changbin nodded, lifting Hyunjin up into his arms. The alpha was lighter than before, and Changbin wondered how often he’d gotten to eat while he was here. Regardless, they needed to leave soon. Who knew how many guards were left in the building that Changbin hadn’t taken out yet. Who knew how many had entered since they did.

But turning around, he faced the real problem. How were they going to get all of these omegas out of here? They were all staring at them, a mix of hope and fear radiating from their scent. It wasn’t like they could carry them out one by one, the car was too far from this building and there was no telling if they’d have to fight on their way back. Changbin frowned, a decision coming to mind.

“Text Woojin,” he told Jisung, “Tell him that we’re taking Hyunjin to a hospital and to bring his police force here. We’ll text him the address of the hospital after we leave it so our identity isn’t at stake.” Jisung nodded, slipping his phone from his pocket. He struggled to type it all out with one hand, but nodded to Changbin when he did. Changbin sucked in a breath, before raising his voice.

“We’re here to save you guys,” he said loudly enough for everyone in the room to hear. “The police are coming. You’ll be free soon.” Jisung’s phone buzzed and he whipped it out, scanning over the message before nodding to Changbin. Changbin nodded back, continuing. “The man who did this to you can’t hurt you anymore. We’ll get you all out of here, okay?” He then turned back to Jisung, tilting his head towards the door. They’d leave and let Woojin take care of the rest. Their number one priority was to get Hyunjin to safety.

But as they were walking out, one of the female omegas, the one that had cried earlier upon seeing them, reached out and grabbed the corner of Jisung’s shirt. “Don’t leave,” she pleaded. Jisung froze, and Changbin could read the exact thoughts on Jisung’s mind.

“We can’t,” he said softly. “If we’re here when Woojin gets here, it’s opportunity for us to get into big trouble.”

“We can’t just leave them,” Jisung said back, gaze thick with worry as he stared down at the girl.

Changbin sighed. “Jisung, I know it’s worrisome but we have to go. If we’re here when Woojin comes we can’t hide our identities any longer. I know it sucks, but we have to be safe.”

Jisung gazed down at the girl, who stared up at him with a quivering lip and fragile eyes. Reluctantly, he reached down to take the hand that was clutching his shirt and held it.

“Just wait patiently, okay?” he said softly. “Just count until you hear them arrive. Within the hour, you won’t be here anymore. The police are coming to save you. But we can’t stay.” At that she began to cry again, hope shattering. She didn’t believe him. Looking around the room, it didn’t seem like any of them did. Still, Changbin was right. They couldn’t stay. They couldn’t risk that, and their number one priority was themselves and their original mission.

And so Jisung released her hand and felt his chest tighten as she cried loudly behind him. They made their way up the stairs, through the building. Jisung had a passing hope that Changbin really had incapacitated everyone in the building who could do those omegas harm. Hopefully Taekwoon was as down as he’d looked. Though it felt like spitting on Yongguk’s name to say it, hopefully that guard was really dead.

They weaved through the shipping containers, avoiding the street lamps just in case. Changbin attempted to lower Hyunjin into the car, but Hyunjin wouldn’t let go of him despite having fallen asleep again. They opted for Jisung to drive and Changbin to hold Hyunjin in the backseat, and right as Jisung began to wish that they’d stayed for the omegas’ sakes, sirens echoed in the distance, heading their way. They drove off quickly.

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It took too long to convince the chief to let them raid this building on the basis of emergency, but he did allow Chan to go scope the place out beforehand. When Chan radioed back that this place looked suspicious as hell, and then that he’d found a number of omegas in chains, the chief finally gave in and allowed half of the entire force to go raid. The sky was fading from black to navy by the time they reached the port. Too much time passed before they found the building that the anonymous tipper and Chan had described, but one of Woojin’s fellow officers finally pointed it out, and they ran in. The officers scattered throughout the building, announcing themselves, kicking down locked doors and rushing into each room with guns drawn. It was blatantly clear that someone had gotten there first, someone skilled enough to have knocked out or broken the legs of every rich-looking person that the officers came across. These people looked to be in pain, some attempting to crawl away from the police, some cursing at them. Woojin felt no sympathy. These alphas were taken into custody.

Woojin headed straight for the basement that Chan had said he’d found, hurrying down the steps and freezing. It was a nightmare to see, and he’d never seen anything like it. Omegas in chains, just like Chan had said. Chan was comforting a girl who looked to be only around eighteen years old, and Woojin regained his composure quickly once Chan looked up and spoke. “Is everyone here?” he asked softly.

“Yeah,” Woojin said, making his way to slowly walk through the room. He didn’t know where to start, who to go to. There were at least ten, no, even more omegas in the darkness, and Woojin turned on his flashlight and left it on the floor as he couldn’t find a light switch anywhere along the walls. The smell of heat radiated throughout the room, but Woojin was long accustomed to dealing with that. Still, he radioed a quick warning to any officer coming downstairs.

“Woojin, this is Yuqi, she says that she’s been here for a few weeks,” Chan said carefully, “but that some of these omegas have been here for up to six months. She said that some… some of them have even died here.” Woojin’s heart fell, and he knelt next to the girl, reaching out a hand, which she slowly gripped onto. Her eyes were puffy with tears. Chan continued lowly, “She said… that an alpha was here for a little over a month before two men came in a few hours ago and took him out.”

And Woojin’s heart ran cold. He looked around the room again, eyes locking onto a set of chains that were smashed at the ends, like someone had broken them to free someone. Hyunjin had likely been in those chains, been in this room, for a full month. He’d suffered like this in these conditions for that long, for almost assuredly even longer outside of this place, and it killed Woojin to know that he’d moped around the entire time just assuming that his brother had died while this happened. If he’d done something sooner, would he have found Hyunjin sooner, even without the help of the anonymous person helping him?

But there was relief that Hyunjin was safe, even if that safety was dependent on a stranger. At least Hyunjin was safe and the person who’d done this to him was in the process of going to prison. This would be the evidence they needed, if Lee Minho was really connected to this place. For now, they’d focus their efforts on getting these omegas to safety. It came with glee that Woojin figured he’d see Hyunjin again within the next day or two, a heavy relief that sucked his breath away and filled his chest with warmth.

After every room was raided and everyone in the upper part of the building was taken into custody, the officers came down and they began breaking the chains, taking the omegas out one by one. Some cried immediately, some looked so numb that they didn’t even realize that the officers were who they were until they were out in the open air for the first time in months. They’d called ambulances to have medical backup, but none of the omegas were severely injured, which was relieving. They were all dangerously thin though, bruised and battered, and whether by ambulance or police car they were all taken to the nearest hospital.

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It was when the medics got Hyunjin into a room, got him situated, that Jisung knew they’d already have to say their goodbyes. Hyunjin was still asleep after he’d passed out on the way to the car an hour or so ago, and Jisung figured it was both the physical and mental exhaustion that allowed him to be sleeping so heavily. They hadn’t texted Woojin the address yet, but thinking about it, Woojin would already be coming here with the other omegas from the basement. They didn’t have much time to stay here before Woojin would find this room.

Changbin had gone to visit Yongguk who was in the same hospital on a different floor to give Jisung the time that he needed. Jisung was grateful for it, sitting in one of the chairs at Hyunjin’s bedside, watching him sleep. He was safe. He was okay. They’d fulfilled their duty to save him. They’d done something good. He tried to ignore knowing that never seeing Hyunjin again felt rough to think about. He didn’t understand why it was like that when Hyunjin was just a hit they’d tasked themselves to save. Maybe Jisung had grown a little defensive over him past his original pity. Still, he knew that he wouldn’t have an opportunity to say a proper goodbye, or to ever meet him again. That had to be accepted, even if it made him feel a thick melancholy throughout his body. He was already pushing it on time. A code had been called over the intercom, and he could hear footsteps rushing down the hallways. He stood, pushed the chair back against the wall, and looked down to Hyunjin one last time, running a hand through his messy hair and whispering, “Stay safe from now on.”

On his way out, he passed an officer, and they made brief eye-contact. Jisung still had his face mask on, and he doubted that he’d be recognized for any reason. But the desperate hope in the officer’s eyes made Jisung think that this must be Woojin. He pulled out his phone as they passed by each other.

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Woojin received a text after passing the stranger, and he looked down at his phone.

‘Hyunjin is in room 305. Take care of him from now on.’

He paused, his heart racing. He turned to look at the person who’d pulled out their phone, the coincidence too good to be true. But by the time he’d turned around, the person was already gone.

Disregarding it, knowing that he didn’t have time to be dallying on this like this, he ran to the designated room, and threw open the door.

Upon seeing Hyunjin in the bed, fast asleep, Woojin began to sob.