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Bold of You to Assume (i'm not in love with u)

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Jimin clicks away at his laptop, dragging file after file into a folder titled: JK – Pied Piper. When he first saw footage of Jeongguk performing the song (which blatantly called out Army’s), Jimin lost his shit. He was coolly scrolling through his Twitter feed and liking BTS’ latest posts when he happened upon the clip of Jeongguk. One would think he’d be used to it by now—Jeongguk’s boyish charms and crooked grin—it’s not like he doesn’t know Jeongguk is hot, but lately he’s gotten to the point of being uncontrollable.

The long hair, perfectly timed head bops and neck rolls; Jimin wanted to make love to that fancam. And he did…to the real thing…thrice. And now the “real thing” is annoyingly poking him in the side.

“Jimin,” Jeongguk whines. “pay attention to me.”

Jimin rolls his eyes, “You said you wanted to watch me work, so watch.”

Jeongguk makes a noise that sounds a lot like a balloon deflating before rolling away from Jimin and hopping off the bed. He paces back and forth with his hands in his pockets and a pout on his face. Jimin doesn’t bother to look up or coo after him and pet him like he’s seen so many of Jeongguk’s fans do. He’s still a loyal fan; he creates edits, posts on his Twitter about his endless love for BTS, etc. But the excitement of dating Jeongguk has faded away into growing anxiety.

We’ve been dating for a year…they’re bound to find out sooner or later—are thoughts which constantly haunt Jimin’s mind.

“Jimin,”

“Hm?” Jimin hums without tearing his gaze from his laptop.

Clearly disappointed by the lack of eye contact, Jeongguk settles back on the bed closely beside Jimin. “If you’re not going to focus on me, at least teach me.” He grumbles.

And the little whine Jeongguk adds at the end, chips away at Jimin’s steely exterior and he turns to Jeongguk with a small smile. “Teach you? You act like you aren’t the creator of GCF.”

Jeongguk grins, “I mean…there’s still lots to learn.”

Jimin rolls his eyes but takes Jeongguk’s hand and intertwines their fingers. “Alright then…what do you want to learn?”

Jeongguk’s eyes light up and he presses himself closer to Jimin. “How do you search for fancams?”

“Really?” Jimin pins him with a quizzical look; amused and disappointed by the lackluster question.

“I really wanna know, do you search things like ‘Jungkook’s thick thighs’ or ‘Jungkook’s vein—”

Jimin nudges him hard with his shoulders and Jeongguk erupts into a fit of high giggles as he careens onto his back, tugging Jimin down with him. Jimin is careful to move his laptop aside knowing where this is going.

“Did you save it?” Jeongguk asks as his hand slips out of Jimin’s to rest on Jimin’s hip.

“It autosaves.”

“Ya sure?” Jeongguk slides his hand down to casually cup Jimin’s ass.

“I mean…”

Jeongguk smiles, “Double check.”

There was a time when Jeongguk came over and Jimin was working on a new video, and he got distracted by Jeongguk’s wandering hands. So much so, that he forgot to save what he was working on and all was lost. It took Jimin two days to get over it. Two whole days of groaning and all-caps text messages. Jeongguk was there to help Jimin mourn over Project JK (as Jimin dubbed it).

Jimin sits up to retrieve his laptop and Jeongguk watches him from the bed with a tender smile. Gradually his gaze dips from Jimin’s shoulders to his ass. “New jeans?” he asks suddenly.

Jimin presses CTRL + S on his laptop, “Tae got them for me.”

Jeongguk hums in approval. “Nice color.”

Jimin shuts his laptop and spins to Jeongguk with a knowing expression. “Color?”

“Yeah, yeah—black—totally suits you.” Jeongguk’s tone remains neutral despite the grin stretching across his face.

Jimin snorts as he crawls onto the bed and back into Jeongguk’s arms. “Are we cuddling or….” He trails off suggestively.

Jeongguk pushes their bodies flush together and kisses the dip of Jimin’s neck. “I was thinking,” he kisses Jimin’s collarbones. “we can do a little bit of kissing and cuddling.” He angles his head up to languidly suck on Jimin’s bottom lip.

Jimin’s eyes flutter when Jeongguk nips at his lips before pulling back. “Hm?”

“Sounds good as long as you let me run my fingers through your hair.” Jimin murmurs while looking into Jeongguk’s eyes.

Jeongguk laughs sweetly. “Anything for you, angel.”

Jimin smiles as they lean to each other, but just before their lips meet, a loud BANG from down the hall ruins the moment. They simultaneously spring up and look to the hall with wide eyes.

“What was that?” Jeongguk whispers, his grip on Jimin tightening in protection mode.

Jimin groans, “Probably, Taehyung.” He reluctantly detangles himself from Jeongguk and rolls off the bed. He walks briskly to his room door and peeps out into the hall. Sure enough, he sees Taehyung bustling towards him.

Jeongguk joins him at the door, he slides an arm around Jimin’s waist and peers over his shoulder.

“Did you just break our door?” Jimin asks.

Taehyung stops in front of them, acknowledges Jeongguk with a grunt and grips Jimin by his shoulders. “No, I didn’t, but I need your help.”

Jimin swallows his annoyance as he takes in Taehyung’s strained expression. “Why? What’s wrong?”

Taehyung gulps, “I think I’m in love.”

Jeongguk looks between them and his grip on Jimin tightens. He leans forward in anticipation.

“With?” Jimin asks.

Taehyung gnaws on his bottom lip and takes a deep breath before continuing. “Well…I don’t think I’m in love, but things may have been…insinuated when I was with him and shit—honey—I think he knows and—”

Jimin does what he always does when Taehyung starts “catching feelings”; he lovingly wraps his arms around Taehyung and embraces him. “Take a deep breath.”

Jeongguk’s grip on Jimin loosens and he watches them with an unreadable expression.

Taehyung melts into Jimin’s arms and inhales deeply before he word vomits into Jimin’s ears. “We were texting, and he asked me to hang out like he usually does and when we met up, he stared at me…like lovingly.” Taehyung pauses to catch his breath. “We’ve been on the fence about our relationship status ever since things got serious and then he kissed me a few months bac—”

“Who?” Jimin interrupts calmly.

Taehyung blinks because this is the hard part, there’s always a hard part. “Uhm…”

Jimin raises an inquisitive brow. “Who is it, Tae?”

“Well…” Taehyung’s eyes flick to Jeongguk and he swallows thickly. “Hobi…” he mutters.

Jimin’s eyebrows draw together. “Huh?”

“Hoseok…I think I’m in love with Hoseok.”

There’s a pause—pregnant and heavy with shock—Jimin’s mouth opens and closes several times.

Jeongguk stares wide-eyed with a hand to his chest.

After several seconds of silence and staring, Jeongguk clears his throat. “There’s thousands of Hoseok’s in Korea, so we shouldn’t jump to any conclu—”

“Jung Hoseok, J-hope, Hope on the fucking street.” Taehyung deadpans.

“I would’ve…I would’ve noticed if he was seeing someone or…” Jeongguk begins, but he trails off as it dawns on him. Hoseok sneaking out in the early morning, always on his phone…laughing. His brighter than usual smile and energy. The sweet, pink and almost tangible aura around him. Jeongguk gasps. “Shit.”

“Yeah, shit.” Taehyung mutters.

“No like, shit, shit.” Jeongguk shoves a hand through his hair. “I’m upset he didn’t tell me about you and him.”

Taehyung blinks. “You’re…upset by the fact that he didn’t tell you, but not by the fact that he’s Jung Hoseok and I’m…Kim Taehyung…an art student.”

Jeongguk waves his hand dismally. “I’m Jeon Jeongguk and my boyfriend is Park Jimin—what’s the problem with you dating Hoseok?”

“We’re not dating.”

Jeongguk refrains from rolling his eyes, “Possibly dating Hoseok.”

Jimin, who had momentarily traveled to another dimension, finally returns with a sharp breath and a punch to Taehyung’s chest.

“Uhm, ow.” Taehyung huffs as he clutches at his chest.

“Why’re you telling me this now? I told you the moment Jeongguk and I started talking.”

“I suck.” Taehyung says quickly.

“Yeah, you do, but automatically agreeing with me doesn’t change the fact that you didn’t tell me.” Jimin snaps.

Taehyung frowns and remains silent as Jimin patronizes him.

“I knew something was up when we had dinner last year and Hoseok wouldn’t shut up about your hair, but I didn’t want to assume—I was waiting for you, Tae.”

“I’m sorry, honey.” Taehyung makes a move to hug Jimin again and kiss his forehead but stops when he realizes how hard Jeongguk is staring him down. There isn’t jealousy in his eyes but subdued longing—it’s the look he always gets when Jimin and Taehyung interact.

Jimin notices Taehyung’s hesitance and decides to knock him in the chest again. “Next time tell me when you start catching feelings, so I can help you through it.” he smiles warmly.

“Okay.” Taehyung pouts with guilt, but Jimin gives him a quick hug of reassurance.

“I’m not mad anymore…want to talk about it now?”

Jeongguk clears his throat. “I can leave if you guys need some privacy.”

Taehyung rolls his eyes, “No, you’re allowed to stay solely because you’re Jimin’s boyfriend.”

Jimin snorts. “You also want him to spill what he knows about Hoseok.”

Taehyung flashes a crooked grin as he latches himself to Jeongguk’s arm. “So, Loverboy, mind telling me everything?”

“Not happening.” Jeongguk shoves him away and slips past him towards the kitchen.

Taehyung hobbles after him. “Come on! I told you everything about Jimin; his weaknesses, his love for Hulu and wine, his kinks.”

Jeongguk flushes at the mention of kinks and quickly buries his face in the fridge.

Jimin follows them and plops down in one of the beanbags Taehyung bought on a whim. “Still a bit mad about that, Tae.” He chimes.

“I’m sorry, honey, but I did you both a favor.” Taehyung singsongs.

Jimin and Jeongguk shoot each other a look after a momentary pause, they decide to change the topic with an awkward cough.

“So, we’ve already established you like Hoseok.” Jimin begins.

“Yep,” Taehyung makes himself comfortable in the wooden chair at the end of the table. “head over heels.”

With a pint of ice-cream in hand, Jeongguk slams the fridge door shut and joins Jimin. They fumble for a moment, making themselves comfortable on the large beanbag. 

“Want a taste?” Jeongguk offers a scoop of ice-cream to Jimin.

Jimin responds by opening his mouth and enveloping the spoon with his tongue. Jeongguk gazes at him lovingly with a tinge of desire in his eyes.

Taehyung coughs, “Still here.”

Jeongguk doesn’t bother to respond, instead he continues to “spoil” Jimin until Jimin signals him to stop.

“Ya’ll are gross.” Taehyung mutters.

Jimin beams, “Anyways, we’ll work this out.” he claps his hands excitedly with a sudden idea. “What if we help you?”

Taehyung blinks.

“Jeongguk and I.”

“Help me how?”

Jimin straightens up excitedly and Jeongguk’s breath hitches when Jimin’s ass rolls back against his crotch.

“Simple, we’ll help Hoseok realize his feelings for you.”

“Hoseok-hyung may not verbalize it, but he sure does show when he likes someone.” Jeongguk says as he casually rests his hands on Jimin’s hips.

Taehyung leans forward in his seat, eyebrows raised high with intrigue. “How?”

Jeongguk shrugs, “If he likes you as a friend, he makes the effort to get to know your likes and dislikes. If he likes you more than a friend, well then, he becomes quiet and listens to what you have to say. He hovers around you 24/7 and his face just…brightens.” He says. “I mean he’s already bright, but he glows when he’s in love.”

“How do you…know all this?” Taehyung questions, eyes squinting skeptically.

Jeongguk swallows, unsure if he should be the one telling Taehyung this. “Well…he was…in love with Yoongi-hyung.”

Jimin’s eyes widen and Taehyung throws his hands up in the air.

“My competition is Min Yoongi?!”

“Chill, damn,” Jeongguk murmurs. “he was in love with Yoongi. Now they’re just really close—inseparable even, but Hoseok-hyung put his romantic feelings aside.”

“This sounds like an idiotic slow-burn fanfic in the making.” Taehyung grumbles. “Don’t tell me Namjoon and Seokjin are in a relationship?”

Jeongguk presses his lips together opting to remain silent.

Taehyung laughs incredulously. “What the fuck?”

“We’re not dating each other—never have, never will—we’re all extremely close.” Jeongguk explains. “And at some point, some of us mistook our feelings as love.” He shrugs. “Simple as that.”

Jimin glances over his shoulder to look Jeongguk in the eyes.

Jeongguk meets his gaze and gasps when he realizes why Jimin is staring at him. “Never. Not once did I ever like any of my hyung’s like that.” He explains quickly. “They’re amazing and I love them, but the feelings I have for them is far different from the feelings I have for you.”

Jimin stares into Jeongguk’s eyes and smiles warmly at all the love he sees. Jeongguk tightens his grip on Jimin’s hips and leans forward wanting so badly to kiss him and maybe squeeze his butt.

Taehyung gazes at them for approximately ten seconds before deciding it’d be in his best interest to leave. “Okay, I’m gonna go.” He announces.

Jimin tears his gaze from Jeongguk’s and watches as Taehyung hurries to gather his belongings.

“I’ll be back around 8pm. The apartment is all yours till then!” Taehyung tosses them a wink before flying out the door.

Jimin and Jeongguk look to each other silently before bursting into a fit of laughter. Jeongguk nearly kicks his discarded pint of ice-cream when Jimin rolls around so they sit face to face. Jimin’s laughter tapers off until he’s left staring silently at Jeongguk’s face.

“Are we going to finish where we left off or….?” Jimin questions as his tongue darts out to wet his lips.

Jeongguk’s eyes flick to the clock on the wall and he curses. “It’s already 2pm, I’m supposed to be at the dorm.”

Jimin frowns.

“We’re filming Run BTS today and tomorrow.” Jeongguk explains as he places a chaste kiss to Jimin’s forehead.

With a groan, Jimin hops to his feet and extends a hand to help Jeongguk up.

Jeongguk studies Jimin’s face and his eyebrows pull together remorsefully. “Sorry, angel.”

“Why’re you apologizing? I get to watch you next Tuesday, so I’m pretty happy.” Jimin replies with a smile.

Jeongguk steps forward and wraps his arms around Jimin; he holds him tight. “I’ll make it up to you.”

Jimin doesn’t respond to that, instead he wraps his arms around Jeongguk’s shoulders and closes his eyes.

 

<3

 

It’s Friday morning and Jimin’s at the studio going through membership applications when his phone buzzes with a text.

Jeongguk

:(((

Jeongguk

It’s officially missing u hours

Jimin snorts as he types back a short reply.

He calls me baby

Miss u too

He calls me baby

I thought u were filming?

Jeongguk

I am we’re just on break rn

Jeongguk

Which means~~~~~~

He calls me baby

Wht?

Jeongguk

!!!I GET TO TXT U!!!!

He calls me baby

We saw each other yesterday

Jeongguk

And??? Act like I don’t want to see ur cute ass 24/7

Jeongguk

Smh

Jeongguk

“So, you are seeing someone?” Taemin asks suddenly from behind him.

Jimin nearly loses his heart and his phone from the shock. He spins around with panicked eyes and a venomous “fuck you” on his tongue.

“Oh my god, Taemin, make some noise when you walk. Jesus.” Jimin huffs.

Taemin smirks. “Who’s Jeongguk, hm? Does he come to your dance classes?”

Jimin tucks his phone away. “No, nothing like that.”

“Well, he’s gotta be special, you were grinning ear to ear.” Taemin shuffles around the desk to sit in the chair. He grabs a stack of applications and begins flipping through them. “His name sounds familiar though.”

Jimin’s heart drops and his throat constricts. I’m an idiot.

“Oh!” Taemin snaps his fingers. “Jeon Jungkook? The kid from BTS?”

Jimin swallows.

“Don’t you have a channel dedicated to him?” Taemin continues flipping through the applications. Flip. Flip. Flip. “Not sure what it’s called, but anyways, doesn’t he spell his name differently?”

Jimin licks his dry lips. I’m so stupid, I need to be more careful.

“Jimin?”

Jimin blinks, he quickly plasters on a smile. “Yeah, he does spell his name differently.”

Taemin hums, “Wouldn’t it be crazy though? If you got to meet him?”

“Yeah…” he lowers his gaze.

Even though a year has gone by, the only people who know about Jimin’s relationship with Jeongguk is Taehyung of course and the other members of BTS, as well as a few of their trusted staff. But Jimin remains careful in disclosing any information about his dating life. There’s too much at risk for Jeongguk. his career, privacy and emotions.

Initially, they were reckless and went out in public every other week. At some point, Bighit was contacted by a reporting agency which had a sliver of decency to discuss the release of their photos. It was a photo of Jeongguk (in all black and a hoodie, face barely recognizable) and Jimin sneaking around late at night. It was around 1am that night; they were giggling and talking and enjoying each other’s presence. However, the joy didn’t last long because Jeongguk was told to lay low and they were separated for approximately two months until the rumors died down.

“What’s that look for?” Taemin asks.

Jimin looks up and forces himself to smile. “Nothing…just a little tired.”

It’s hard dating Jeongguk, Jimin expected it to be hard, but he wasn’t prepared for this. Whenever he’s asked if he’s dating someone, he lies, and it doesn’t feel right. I don’t have a boyfriend. I’m not seeing anyone. It’s what he says to protect Jeongguk and partially himself. If word spread that Jeon Jungkook is seeing a fan…Jimin can’t fathom the thought of the public’s reaction.

It’s scary.

Jimin pulls out his phone again and begins to type.

He calls me baby changed Jeongguk to Gguk

Gguk

I’ll call u later

Gguk

My jimin senses are tingling

Gguk

We need to tlk, don’t we?

It’s crazy how Jeongguk can pick up the slightest change in Jimin’s attitude even if they aren’t face to face. It’s something he picked up throughout the months of them dating; he studies Jimin’s face and changes his tone to soothe Jimin after a long day. His dark eyes are always so warm and full of something so fond. He even knows Jimin’s texting habits and what others would consider meaningless mannerisms.

He calls me baby

Okie

Jimin’s fingers hover his phone.

…He calls me baby is typing…

Gguk

I can meet u at the usual spot

…He calls me baby is typing…

Gguk

Jimin?

He calls me baby

Yeah okie, I’ll meet u there

Gguk

Alright, there’s something I need to tell u, it’s been on my mind lately

He calls me baby

???

Gguk

No worries : )

Gguk

We’ll be fine

<3

 

Jeongguk stands outside of their Meeting SpotTm—a little spot on a staircase which hides behind Hanam Bridge. They discovered it one night when Jeongguk pulled over so he and Jimin could make out in his car. A few swollen lips later, they stumbled out into the fresh air and confessed their worries on the staircase.

Ever since then, they’ve dubbed the staircase Our steps—symbolic yet silly because they were both drunk with affection and arousal.

Suddenly a pair of arms wrap around Jeongguk from behind, “Boo.” Jimin’s warm voice seeps into the night and all the anxiety and tenseness Jeongguk felt from the shoot this morning, rolls off his shoulders.

He smiles as he places his hands over Jimin’s. “You have no idea how happy you make me.” He suddenly confesses.

“You have no idea how happy you make me.” Jimin replies.

“Really? You really wanna play this?” Jeongguk turns around so they’re face to face. “You make me so happy, my stress melts away at the sound of your voice and I feel so confident on stage knowing you’re watching.”

Jimin blushes.

“You make me so happy, I gush to the hyung’s all the time about you. You make me so happy when you’re doing the things you love.”

“Baby, this wasn’t a competition.” Jimin murmurs as his cheeks redden even more.

“You made it a competition when you said with your lips—lovely lips by the way—how happy I make you.” Jeongguk retorts albeit a bit childishly.

“Your reasoning doesn’t make any sen—”

A kiss, that’s how Jeongguk gets Jimin to stop talking, he kisses him. He always kisses him.

“I love you.”

Jimin’s eyes widen.

“I love you so much and I wanted to tell you months ago, but…the timing was never right.” Jeongguk’s eyes fill with remorse and longing. “Maybe now isn’t the right time, but Jimin I love you.”

“Jeongguk….”

“I love you and…” Jeongguk bites his bottom lip. “I had sometime to think about it and I talked to Namjoon-hyung and…” he pauses to take a deep breath. “What I’m trying to say is…”

Jimin searches Jeongguk’s eyes and he knows what he’s going to say before he says it.

“I want the world to know I love you.” Jeongguk professes. “I’m tired of meeting you like this, like you’re wrong and my feelings for you are wrong.” His grip on Jimin tightens. “I’m tired of hiding.”

Three hours ago

Namjoon sits across from Jeongguk in the waiting room while the other members lie asleep on the couch. There’s one more scene left to shoot and Jeongguk’s just at his breaking point, so he recharges by looking through photos he and Jimin took together.

“You’re smiling.” Namjoon says suddenly.

Jeongguk looks up.

“Looking at Jimin?”

Jeongguk feigns shock. “How’d you know?”

Namjoon rolls his eyes. “You make it obvious. He’s the only one who can make you smile like that.”

Sometimes Jeongguk wonders how he looks when he’s looking at Jimin. Do stars appear in my eyes? Are my pupils huge? “Yeah…”

“Jeongguk,” Namjoon’s tone shifts and his brotherly expression morphs with severity. “You’re serious about him, aren’t you?”

Jeongguk nods. “I think I love—no—I love him, hyung and I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how we have to act when we meet each other.”

Namjoon listens.

“The hiding, the hoodies, the secretive hand holding—it sucks.”

“This is what you sacrifice when you become an idol.” Namjoon murmurs. “One of many sacrifices.”

Jeongguk sighs, “At first I was okay with not dating, but now that I have someone I love, I want to brag about him and upload our pictures to Instagram.” Jeongguk presses a hand to his neck. “What I hate the most though is the sad look he gets in his eyes when I leave. He’s not sad because I’m leaving, he’s not upset by the fact that I have to go and be Jungkook, no…he…” Jeongguk swallows.

Namjoon continues to gaze steadily at Jeongguk and his heart aches. He’s grown so much.

“He’s sad because he knows he has all of me, yet he can’t openly express that. The sad look in his eyes is because I know that he knows, we’ll never be like other couples.”

Present

Jeongguk steps back to put breathing distance between them. He keeps his eyes on Jimin and hesitates before taking his hand. “I’m sorry…for being so greedy.” Jeongguk mutters.

Jimin’s eyes shake and his heart thrums loudly in his ears.

“Jimin?”

He’s tired of hiding? Why? Why does he want the world to know?

“Angel?”

What about BTS? What about his music?

“Jimin!” Jeongguk raises his voice a bit and leans in close to Jimin.

“Y-yes?”

Jeongguk grins crookedly, “You left me for a moment.”

“S-sorry, it’s just a lot to take in.” Jimin runs a hand through his hair. “I don’t know what to think.”

“You don’t have to tell me anything right now, but I thought you should know I’m ready to risk it all for you.”

“Don’t be stupid.” The words slip from Jimin’s mouth with more vehemence than intended and he gasps in panic. “I’m sorry, that was mean, what I meant to say was…I love you too and because I love you, it would kill me if you gave up your dreams for me.”

It’s been four months since they’ve had this conversation. The dream conversation as they jokingly call it. They always have this conversation when the topic of going public is brought up.

“Let’s…think this through, okay?” Jimin says.

Jeongguk nods even though he’s already made up his mind.

Chapter Text

The new episode of Run BTS! Is a feast for the eyes, at least in Jimin’s opinion. He sits on the couch with a bag of honey chips in his arms and a lot on his mind. At least today’s episode serves as a much-needed distraction. Jeongguk’s short hair and swollen cheeks gives Jimin all sorts of butterflies. The episode was probably recorded earlier this year judging by Jeongguk’s hair and youthfulness.

Jimin munches, crunches and laughs as the episode carries on. Watching BTS has always helped Jimin heal; from the way they interact with each other to their contagious laughter. It’s nice watching them like this, but his view has changed over the months. Of course, he still finds joy in watching them, but he knows them. Personally. And he can’t help but notice the slight disconnect in their onscreen personas compared to their real-life personas.

Jeongguk’s the same way. Different yet the same.

Jimin dazedly chews as he recalls the conversation with Jeongguk from a few days ago.

“You don’t seem too happy about this…” Jeongguk murmurs as he takes in Jimin’s downcast expression.

“I just,” Jimin swallows. “I don’t know…aren’t things fine just the way they are?”

Conflict flickers in Jeongguk’s eyes, “I’m not saying they aren’t fine.”

“Then we can wait.” Jimin grips Jeongguk’s arms. “Can’t we wait?”

Jimin clicks the TV off and bounces to his feet. Classes were cancelled for today and Taemin told Jimin to take the day off and enjoy himself. “You deserve it.” he said. Jimin plans on enjoying himself, maybe hit up a club or two later tonight. He might even send Jeongguk a few promiscuous photos to mess with him. Jimin grins wickedly. That’s not such a bad idea.

Suddenly his phone buzzes with a message. Jimin tilts his head confusedly as he scoops up his phone. He figures it’s Taehyung messaging him since Jeongguk said he was going to be busy today. However, he’s surprised to see it’s a message from Hoseok.

Sunshine

Ya busy?

JK’s Baby

Nope, today’s an off day for me

JK’s Baby

Wht’s up?

Sunshine

Can we meet?

Sunshine

I need to talk to you

 

JK’s Baby

Me??? U wanna see me and not taehyung???

Sunshine

Yeeaaaaaah….i need to talk to you about him….

Jimin smiles to himself.

JK’s Baby

Okay, give me a time and a place

Sunshine

:D ur the best!!!!!!

Sunshine

Xoxoxox~

Sunshine

Also, is everything okay between you and Jeongguk?

JK’s baby

Yeah, why?

Sunshine

He seemed kinda mopey this morning

JK’s Baby

Oh…yeah everything’s fine

JK’s Baby

We’ve been tlking about somethings, thts all

Jimin sends several smiley emojis for added effect. He doesn’t want to strain his relationship with the other members because of his indecisiveness and insecurity. Honestly though, everything is okay, at least for now.

JK’s Baby

Anyways whn do u wanna meet?

Sunshine

Tomorrow morning at 7am

Sunshine

I know it’s early but I need to be in the studio later

 

JK’s Baby

Nah tht’s fine, I have class at 9 so it works out : )

Sunshine

Awesome!!! I’ll send u the address later tonight

JK’s Baby

Mmkay

 

Biting his lip, Jimin decides to send Jeongguk a short and sweet text since texting Jeongguk eases his mind. The memes, the jokes (sometimes sexual, often not) and Jeongguk’s unnecessary use of “?” and “!”. Texting Jeongguk simply makes Jimin happy, arguably the happiest man on earth.

He calls me baby

Thinking of you, hope you’re thinking of me too

<3

 

Cameras flash in quick succession as Jeongguk changes his facial expression to suit the mood. It’s currently 10am and the shoot hasn’t been going on for more than an hour, but Jeongguk’s already over it. His thoughts can’t seem to focus on anything other than the conversation he had with Jimin. The way Jimin looked at him and spoke to him, so desperate to cling onto the current state of their relationship. Hidden.

“Tilt your head a bit for me.” The director orders.

Jeongguk complies with a light sigh. Two more hours and it’ll be over. He drapes an arm over his face and stares longingly into the camera lens. After a few more shots, the director signals for a break and stylists flock onto the set. They touch up his make-up and muse his hair before dispersing once again. Jeongguk hurries off the set towards his manager.

“Hyung, do we have another schedule after this?”

“Filming a CF for Puma.” Sejin informs.

Jeongguk presses his lips together. “After that?”

“Well, you’re free until tomorrow evening.”

Jeongguk’s eyes light up. “Do you think I could…”

“See Jimin?” Sejin questions with a soft smile.

Jeongguk nods.

“Of course, as long as you’re careful.”

“You know I’m always careful.” Jeongguk says with a light punch to Sejin’s arm.

Sejin regards him with a warm gaze before directing his attention to the other members. Namjoon and Seokjin are gathered by the monitor to look over their photos while Yoongi’s sleeping in a chair and Hoseok—Jeongguk looks around—is nowhere to be found. Maybe he slipped off to call Taehyung? A slow smirk spreads across Jeongguk’s face and with a new mission in mind, he saunters down the hall towards the bathroom. He’s careful to walk on the balls of his feet as he inches down the hall. Jeongguk figures if he catches Hoseok in the act of talking to Taehyung, it’ll be a lot easier to bring up the topic of getting them together. What if he doesn’t like Taehyung? Jeongguk gasps at such a thought and lightly slaps himself across the face. Stop sending out bad vibes, he chastises himself, I’m 100% sure he’d sell his soul to Taehyung.

“Yeah, I’m at a shoot right now.”

Jeongguk freezes at the happy tinker of Hoseok’s voice.

“What about you?” Hoseok laughs lightly as he slips out of the bathroom with a hand to his neck. “Really?! I’m so happy for you.”

Jeongguk backs himself up against a wall hoping he’d somehow become invisible within the next five seconds.

“I was thinking, to celebrate the success of your art project maybe…” Hoseok licks his lips. “we could see a movie. Wasn’t the Blue Theater showing old—” the person on the line must’ve cut him off because Hoseok abruptly stops speaking and a bright smile splinters across his face. “I’m sorry, classic English movies.” He corrects.

Jeongguk watches for a few seconds more before he steps forward into Hoseok’s line of sight.

“Yeah, whatever time works for you.” Hoseok laughs again loud and bashful. “Right, sorry, sometimes I forget I’m famous.” He remarks sarcastically.

Still unnoticed by Hoseok, Jeongguk takes a step forward and deliberately clears his throat. Hoseok’s head snaps up so fast his dark hair whips out of his eyes and Jeongguk momentarily worries for his neck.

However, Jeongguk pushes such thoughts aside to focus on the task at hand. “Who?” he whispers while gesturing to Hoseok’s phone.

“None of your business.” Hoseok snaps, but his tone quickly changes when he speaks into his phone. “No, I was talking to Jeongguk.”

Jeongguk scoffs offendedly

“Yeah, okay, I’ll talk to you later. Mhm, bye.” The second Hoseok hangs up, he pins Jeongguk with a bewildered (slightly annoyed) expression. “What’re you doing?”

“What are you doing?” Jeongguk retorts.

“I don’t have to answer that.”

“But you will once I tell you I know who you were talking to.”

Hoseok’s eyebrows draw together confusedly. “What…logic is that?”

“Jeongguk Logic, it’s a work in progress at the moment.”

Hoseok snorts.

“Anyways,” he straightens up, opting for a serious posture and tone. “you were talking to Taehyung, weren’t you?”

Hoseok’s eyes widen comically.

Jeongguk clicks his tongue. “You’re quite obvious, hyung.”

Hoseok hesitates in coming up with a believable lie, so with a sigh, he places a hand to Jeongguk’s shoulder. “Don’t tell the others, okay?”

Jeongguk beams, “Of course!”

Hoseok visibly relaxes.

“I’m kinda offended you’d think I’d tell in the first place.” Jeongguk murmurs. “Especially since you’ve been there for me when Jimin and I started dating.”

“Sorry, what I said came across insensitive, I just…” Hoseok squeezes Jeongguk’s shoulder. “I don’t know what to do.”

“It’s a lot harder when you’re the one walking on fire.”

Hoseok nods with a lopsided grin, “I want to tell the guys, but I’m not sure what we are—Taehyung and I.”

For a moment, Jeongguk figures he could make this easier on all of them by telling Hoseok how Taehyung truly feels, but that isn’t his place and Jimin would beat his ass for doing such a thing.

“So, I’m meeting Jimin tomorrow to talk to him about the best way to approach Taehyung.” Hoseok continues. “About dating that is.”

“You’re really thinking about dating him?”

Hoseok chews nervously on his bottom lip. “Yeah,” his cheeks flush a pretty pink. “he makes me feel things, Gguk, unbelievable things.”

Jeongguk knows that feeling all too well—the numerous emotions of falling for someone and openly loving someone. Openly. “I understand.” Jeongguk replies softly. “Wait…you’re meeting Jimin?”

Hoseok nods, “I texted him earlier.”

“That’s not fair.”

“You can text him if you want to.”

“Yeah, I’m just playing the jealous boyfriend card right now.”

Hoseok laughs, “You’re weird.”

“Jimin loves me for it though.” Jeongguk’s struck with a sudden idea. “We should get together sometime, all four of us.”

“Like a…double date?”

“Something like that, but we won’t label it as such so it doesn’t scare Taehyung off.”

Hoseok tosses the idea around in his head. “That’s not a bad idea…”

“I know, I’m a genius.”

Hoseok eyes him and then laughs lightly. “Whatever you say.”

The photoshoot wraps up smoothly and Jeongguk has some time to spare now that it’s over. He makes himself comfortable in the backseat of the van as the other members climb in. They’re on their way to their next shoot and Jeongguk decides to text Jimin before it’s too late.

Gguk

I’m thinking of u too and how u made plans with Hoseok-hyung w/o me

Gguk

: (

He calls me baby

I was gonna tell u but thn I got busy with some stuff

Gguk

: (((((

Gguk

I thought we were a team

Gguk

I thought we were in this together

He calls me baby

Stop being so dramatic

Gguk

Send me a selfie and I’ll think about it

He calls me baby

[IMAGE ATTACHED]

Jeongguk gasps and his entire face flushes red at the sight.

Beside him Yoongi chokes on his water, “I did not need to see that.” he mutters.

Gguk

BABY WTF WTFW TFDYSFDSFDS

Gguk

WHATFASADCBDKV

Gguk

I’M IN THE FVCKING CAR

Gguk

WITH THE HYUNGS

He calls me baby

Tht was an accident : )

Gguk

WHAT THE FVCK

He calls me baby

are u complaining….?

Gguk

No, hell no, not at all

Gguk

Just…give me a warning next time so I don’t pop one in the car

He calls me baby

I’ll think about it

Gguk

I am so srry for saying tht earlier and calling u out w/o thinking about wht u might be doing

Gguk

I was wrong

Gguk

Gguk

Forgive me

He calls me baby

(Only good boys are forgiven)

He calls me baby

WHY USE THT GIF

He calls me baby

I BAWLED THT DAY WHN YA’LL WON

Gguk

(I’ll be good)

Gguk

I bawled just last night

He calls me baby

….why?

Gguk

Bc I realized I won ur heart

He calls me baby

I can’t with u

Gguk

<3 <3 <3 love you too~

The next day

It’s 7:13am and Jimin hopes he’s not running too late and that Hoseok is still waiting for him. Last night he didn’t return home until 1am and didn’t go to sleep till 2:30am because he was busy on the phone with Jeongguk. Their conversation truly wasn’t much of a “conversation” as it was a more a declaration of how needy Jeongguk’s been these past few days.

“I’m touch starved, Jimin.” Jeongguk declares. “My insides are shrinking.”

“If you can’t handle seeing me for less than two days, imagine how you’ll be once your encore tour starts.”

Jeongguk gasps, “I hadn’t thought about that.”

“Yep…” Jimin trails off wistfully.

The last tour brought a slight strain to their relationship; the distance and time difference. Sometimes Jimin woke up cranky and unknowingly projected such emotions on Jeongguk. Other times Jeongguk went to bed late and answered Jimin with uncalled for aggression or disinterest. 

Which resulted in their first big fight.

Words were said and silence followed, but soon after they started speaking to each other again. They both apologized and readily forgave each other.

“It won’t be as bad.” Jeongguk assures. “Especially if what I’m planning goes well.”

Jimin flies through the café doors and stumbles inside. People look his way with confused gazes before going about their business. Jimin bows apologetically as he makes his way up the stairs. When he turns the corner, he spots Hoseok sitting with someone by the window. As Jimin nears, he recognizes Jeongguk’s signature oversized hoodie. The green oneTM (it’s the one Jimin’s worn countless times).

Hoseok jumps up the second his eyes land on Jimin. “You made it!”

“A little late though.” Jimin murmurs apologetically.

Hoseok rushes forward to pull Jimin into a hug. “No need to feel bad about it.”

Jeongguk waves from his seat and makes room in the booth for Jimin to sit beside him. Jimin doesn’t question why Jeongguk is here, instead he settles beside him and intertwines his fingers with Jeongguk’s.

“This kid decided to tag along,” Hoseok explains. “he also wants to help out.”

Jeongguk clicks his tongue, “I’m far from being a kid, hyung.”

“Sorry, old habit.”

Jeongguk grins understandingly before directing his attention to Jimin. “We haven’t ordered yet; do you want me to order for you?”

“Yeah, can you get me something strong?”

“Yep.” Jeongguk leans over for a kiss. “Be back.” He slides out of the booth and walks briskly down the stairs.

Hoseok sighs, “You two are so sweet to each other.”

Jimin blushes, “It’s Jeongguk who’s the sweetheart; he practically wears his heart on his sleeve.”

“Don’t disregard yourself like that, Jeongguk’s lucky to have someone so patient and understanding. He was quite the hassle when he was younger,” Hoseok laughs. “but he’s grown into himself.”

Jimin nods. “He truly has.”

Jimin recalls watching videos of “baby gguk.” He was so quiet and introverted as he struggled to piece himself together in a group of four other boys. They were all ripe and anxious about the future yet here they are now. Experienced and wise, yet so young with a will to learn more.

“Anyways, when did you first start to like, Tae?” Jimin rests his chin in his hands and stares intensely back at Hoseok.

“What?” Hoseok coughs.

“Taehyung. Why did you start to like him?”

“Oh…well…” a tender smile slips onto Hoseok’s face as he begins to tell his story. “It was last year when we ate dinner together for the second time…”

“Here’s to successfully completing the Love Yourself Tour!” Namjoon cheers as he raises a glass.

“Thank god!” Seokjin chimes; cheeks pink and lips swollen red.

Yoongi grumbles something about nearly dying while popping a piece of bread into his mouth.

Jeongguk tightens his grip on Jimin’s hand and leans over to whisper, “I’m free tonight…”

Jimin turns to him with wide, excited eyes, “Really?”

“Uh-huh,” he places a hand to Jimin’s thigh. “I was thinking of coming over…”

Jimin swallows.

“Is that okay?” Jeongguk tightens his grip on Jimin’s thigh while giving him his best puppy-eyes.

“Y-yeah,” Jimin mutters. “totally okay—A-okay—fantastic.”

Jeongguk beams.

Hoseok shakes his head at them before facing Taehyung. He’s taken aback to see that Taehyung is already looking at him. Those round, gorgeous eyes are staring straight through his soul. “Y-yes?” he blubbers. “How can I help you?”

His sudden question causes Taehyung to chuckle—light and sweet—his entire face melts like sweet ice-cream. If Taehyung were a flavor, he’d be strawberry.  “Can you pour me a glass of soju?”

“Yeah.” Hoseok fumbles for the glass as he tries not to think about the sultry way Taehyung seems to gaze at him. Does he look at everyone like he can see into their souls?

“You’re blushing.” Taehyung suddenly states when Hoseok turns back to him.

“I am?”

Taehyung nods, “Red up to your ears.”

“I can’t hold my liquor well.”

Taehyung laughs. “Neither can I, I prefer wine.” He holds out his glass to Hoseok. “But I’ll drink tonight to honor your success.”

Hoseok begins to pour, “What about you Mr. Art Student? I heard about your gallery exhibition from Jeongguk.”

“Y-you heard?” Taehyung flusters and his eyes double in size.

“God, you’re cute.” Hoseok’s brain must’ve malfunctioned because he just said that out loud. He’s been told he has a bad habit of saying what’s on his mind. “Shit.” He mutters.

Taehyung grins, “You are too.”

Hoseok stops pouring and stares wide-eyed at the artsy God before him.

“Cute that is.”

“I just fell for the way he looked at me and the way he talked—all slow and deliberate as though every word was precalculated.” Hoseok fiddles with the string of his jacket. “But not calculated in the crazy-I’ve-been-watching-you-way, but I-care-about-talking-to-you-so-I’m-going-to-think-about-what-I-say-before-saying-it-way.”

“Oh my god,” Jimin gasps while leaning back. “you’re so in love with him, oh my god.”

“That bad?”

Jimin nods while hiding his smile behind his hand, “Oh yeah.”

Before the conversation goes any further, Jeongguk returns with Jimin’s drink in hand. “I got you something to snack on since you probably didn’t have time to grab something to eat.” Jeongguk says as he scoots in next to Jimin. “I didn’t know if you were in a sweet mood or salty mood, so I got you an egg tart and a ham croissant.”

Unable to respond coherently, Jimin opts to kiss Jeongguk to express how touched he is.

“Okay, that,” Hoseok points between them. “is just gross, but I respect how much you love each other.”

Jeongguk smirks, “Just wait ‘til you and Taehyung start dating.”

“Taehyung’s the clingy type.” Jimin adds.

Hoseok’s eyebrows quirk up. “Really?”

“Yep, he’s a major baby.”

Hoseok pulls out an invisible pen and begins to scrawl across his hand. “Ma-jor ba-by. The cling-y ty-pe. Noted.”

Jimin laughs. “Anyways, let’s get down to business.”

Jeongguk steals a bite from Jimin’s egg tart before pointing to Hoseok. “Are you confident?”

Hoseok blinks, “Come again?”

“Are you confident in your feelings for Taehyung?”

“Yes, of course, I’ve been pining over him for a little over a year now.”

“Confident enough to date him even if others don’t know you’re dating?” Jeongguk asks.

“Yes, that doesn’t bother me.”

“But it’ll probably bother Taehyung.” Jimin says.

This statement gives Hoseok pause.

“He likes being exclusive; going out in public, posting about his partner and things like that.” Jimin elaborates.

Jeongguk nods dazedly as his thoughts shift to his relationship with Jimin. I want that too.

“Okay…I see what you’re saying.” Hoseok replies.

Jimin sips from his Americano, “But you can worry about that once you’re together.”

“Right…”

Hoseok has thought about what it means to date, especially to date someone outside of the “norm” in South Korea and to go public with his relationship as a member of BTS. Now that he thinks about the amount of emotional strength it takes and trust in a relationship—he has major respect for Jeongguk and Jimin.

Their conversation carries on despite a few distractions, one of them being Jeongguk’s need to film Jimin as he eats. Jimin doesn’t seem fazed by Jeongguk’s phone in his face and Hoseok deems that this must be a normal occurrence between them. Besides, Jeongguk looks so happy while looking at Jimin—he’s the epitome of contentedness.

Towards the end of their conversation, they decide it’d be best for Hoseok to confess the night of Taehyung’s second gallery exhibition.

“You might not be able to come to the exhibit, but it’ll make him happy to see you afterwards.” Jimin assures.

They say their goodbyes and Hoseok hugs Jimin before sneaking off to the parking garage across the street.

Jimin watches as he goes before turning to Jeongguk. “Why’re you following me?”

“Let me walk you to class.” Jeongguk begs. “Please, just this once, angel.”

Jimin scowls, “Can’t do that.”

“No one’ll even know who I am.”

He looks Jeongguk up and down, “I’ve met fans that could recognize you by your neck alone.”

“Then…can we talk at your place later?” Jeongguk mumbles as a pout curls his lips.

Finding him particularly irresistible, Jimin lowers Jeongguk’s mask and steals a kiss. “Okay, I’ll text you when I get out of class.”

Jeongguk beams and in his excitement, he pulls Jimin towards him by his waist. “You’re the best, oh and Jimin…”

“Hm?”

Jeongguk looks around anxiously while chewing on his lower lip.

“What’s wrong?”

After taking a deep breath, Jeongguk confesses, “I was serious though…about going public.”

“I know,” Jimin reaches up to tuck Jeongguk’s hair behind his ear. “let’s talk about it in detail when you come by later.”

Jeongguk leans into Jimin’s touch, “Okay.” He softly replies.

 

<3

 

This’ll be Jeongguk’s hundred-something time lying on Jimin’s bed (that number might be a bit inflated), but he still can’t get used to the comfort of it all. Everything about Jimin’s bedroom feels like stepping into a sauna after a long day and relaxing. He can truly unwind when he’s at Jimin’s place.

“I’m gonna shower really quick.” Jimin calls from down the hall.

Jeongguk perks up at that and nearly falls on his face as he flies from the bed. “Shower?” he questions while peeping out from the doorway.

Jimin laughs loudly, “I’m joking dumbass. I showered this morning.”

“I showered this morning.” Jeongguk mocks while rolling his eyes dramatically. “You’re such a tease.”

Jimin walks up to him while laughing his signature marshmallow-laugh. “I can tease you even more if you want.”

Jeongguk maintains a blank expression as he slides an arm around Jimin’s waist. “I wouldn’t do that if I were you.”

“Aw, why? Is my big baby going to punish me?” Jimin questions daringly.

Jeongguk grins.

“Am I in trouble now?” Jimin drapes his arms around Jeongguk’s shoulders while tilting his head. “Hm?”

Jeongguk’s gaze follows the sway of Jimin’s blonde bangs and he takes a deep breath. “You’re unfair you know that, right?”

Jimin shrugs, “I’ve been told.”

“Like,” Jeongguk leans in close, “I’m trying to ignore the guy downstairs despite having you so close like this.” His eyebrows furrow. “I’m trying to be good.”

“The guy downstairs? Satan?” Jimin asks feigning innocence.  

Jeongguk laughs, “No, angel, the ‘guy’ that’s currently pressing into your thigh.”

Jimin reddens at that, but that doesn’t stop him from pressing into Jeongguk. In the softest and sweetest voice, Jimin whispers against Jeongguk’s lips. “I want you to be bad.”

“Fuck it then.”

Their lips meet with the intensity of days spent without intimacy and Jeongguk figures they’ll talk about the important stuff after making up for the times they never finished what they started.

Bonus

He calls me baby

U busy?

Gguk

Nah not yet whts up?

He calls me baby

I did a thing~

Gguk

???

He calls me baby

 

Gguk

I’m muting

Gguk

Ur so mean

 

He calls me baby

Says the one who LITERALLY gave my back a spasm bc he was “touch starved”

He calls me baby

I had to lie to taemin about y I was limping….

Gguk

I’m so srry about tht  : ((( ily so so so much

Gguk

U were super hot n stuff but ik tht doesn’t excuse my behavior

He calls me baby

Nah, it was fun

He calls me baby

I kinda like bad boy jeongguk

Gguk

….

Gguk

Tht made me hard

He calls me baby

Ew bye u hormonal baby

Gguk

Jimin nooooo come back

Chapter Text

It’s a bad photo—dark and their faces are barely recognizable, but Jeongguk knows. With just one look at the photo he knows. His heart sinks as dread fills his lungs; it’s hard to breathe or think clearly. His phone buzzes and buzzes with messages from his manager, the members, his friends and Jimin.

He calls me baby

gguk…this is bad

He calls me baby

jeongguk

He calls me baby

they found out where I work?????

He calls me baby

they got my fucking number?????

He calls me baby

i’m scared wtf

He calls me baby

what do we do???

He calls me baby

fuck…no…FUCK

Jeongguk looks to the photo on his computer screen and takes a deep breath as he texts Jimin back.

Gguk

We be honest

Two days before the article release

When Jeongguk’s lying on Jimin’s bed, it becomes easy for him to drift away with his thoughts and to think about his life outside of BTS. It’s easy to just be when he’s with Jimin—to exist as he is with all his flaws and quirks accounted for. He enjoys lying on Jimin’s bed and listening to the sound of Jimin’s feet as he dances up and down the hall. They’ve reached a certain level of domesticity Jeongguk’s dreamed of and it’s comforting like the way Jimin looks when he’s fresh out of the shower. Dewy, sweet and sturdy.

And while he’s swaying along to the flow of his thoughts, he realizes he’s lied a lot throughout his life. Maybe not as much as others, but he has. His first lie was the reason why he joined BTS. Sure, it was true he joined because of Namjoon’s amazing rap skills and aura. But Namjoon was also Jeongguk’s gay awakening—his dimples were cute, and he had hella thick thighs. Jeongguk’s second lie is one that’s ongoing. He hasn’t told his parents about his sexuality—it’s crossed his mind in the past, but he never thought it’d be important since he’s never had time to date in the first place. But now…he has Jimin.

“Baby, want to eat anything? Tae bought chips.” Jimin calls from the kitchen.

“Can I eat your ass?” Jeongguk asks without much thought.

When a response doesn’t come, Jeongguk figures Jimin didn’t hear him, so he springs to his feet and skips out of Jimin’s room. “Did you hea—woah!” Jeongguk dodges a flying spatula. “What the hell?” When Jeongguk recovers he looks up to see Taehyung pointing accusingly at Jimin.

“Your boyfriend threw it.” Taehyung says.

Jeongguk looks to Jimin, “Jimin.” he whines.

“That’s not how you ask to eat my ass.” Jimin mutters. “Tae’s here anyways.”

“Yeah, I didn’t need the imagery.”

“What if I got on my knees and begged?” Jeongguk suggests as he walks towards them.

Taehyung snorts, “You’d resort to begging?” he laughs. “I know my best friend has a nice ass and all but begging?” he pops a potato chip into his mouth.

“Don’t you even start, Taehyung. If Hoseok’s ass was on the table, your opinion would be totally different.” Jeongguk snaps back as he leans over to steal a bite of Jimin’s sandwich.

Taehyung’s lips curl down in agreement. “Touché, lover boy.” He raises a chip in surrender.

“Speaking of Hoseok,” Jimin begins.

Taehyung holds up a hand, “Nope, we aren’t going there.”

“Why? We know everything.” Jimin replies.

Jeongguk nods, “Everything. We even made plans.”

“P-plans?” Taehyung chokes.

“Tonight, we’re going to a club, all four of us.” Jeongguk elaborates.

“A fucking club!?” Taehyung sputters. “Aren’t you both too big to be at clubs?”

Jeongguk shakes his head, “We’ve been to plenty without getting caught.”

“I’m not a fan of the idea either…but…” Jimin gazes into Jeongguk’s eyes. “It seems like he knows what he’s doing.”

“Have a little faith in me, angel.” Jeongguk whispers while leaning over to kiss the top of Jimin’s head. “Also…” he drops his voice so it’s only Jimin that hears, “I haven’t seen you dance in a while.”

Jimin blushes because he knows exactly what Jeongguk means by that. “Right, yeah.” The last time he “danced” for Jeongguk led to a difference in their usual bedroom endeavors. Jeongguk’s usually milky, brown eyes were dark and intense and Jimin enjoyed every aching second of it. Jeongguk’s truly a god when it comes to sex—Jimin doesn’t know how he got so lucky.  

Jeongguk laughs as he heads for the door. “I have to go now, but I’ll see you later.”

“Bye, lover boy.” Taehyung salutes.

The second the door clicks shut, Taehyung spins to Jimin with a knowing head tilt. “What was that about?”

“What was what about?” Jimin asks.

“Don’t play dumb, you literally made horny eyes at him.”

Jimin snorts, “What the fuck are horny eyes and why does it matter?”

“Because you’re gonna leave me with Hoseok when we go out later today.”

“Yeah and? It’ll work in your favor.” Jimin brushes past him and heads towards his room. “I’m going to work on my homework!”

“Lies! I know you’re going to mess around and edit videos of Jeong—”

Jimin slams his room door shut cutting off the last of Taehyung’s words. He isn’t wrong; Jimin plans on editing videos of Jeongguk while also thinking of the conversation they had before Taehyung arrived. They were sitting idly on the couch; Jimin in Jeongguk’s lap and Jeongguk with his chin hooked in the crook of Jimin’s neck. Talking.

“You smell like cotton.” Jeongguk hums.

Jimin laughs as he mindlessly flips through the TV channels. “It’s my bodywash.”

“Makes me wanna just hold you all day.” Jeongguk squeezes Jimin even tighter.

“Don’t you have to be somewhere?”

“Yeah…unfortunately…” Jeongguk grumbles.

Jimin places the remote aside and turns his head slightly to meet Jeongguk’s eyes. “I still don’t get how you’re able to come by almost every day.”

“I have an awesome manager.”

Jimin sighs, “Yeah, but the risk of you getting caught is even higher.”

“You worry too much.”

Jimin scoffs, “I worry too much? Jeongguk I’m being serious.”

“Sorry, sorry, that was rather insensitive.” Jeongguk kisses the corner of Jimin’s mouth. “Stop pouting.”

“I’m not pouting.”

Jeongguk doesn’t say anything in response, instead he stares Jimin down until Jimin gives in with a groan.

“Honestly…” Jimin begins, “I have this constant fear of people finding out about us. I kind of want them too because I’m proud to be your boyfriend, but…”

Jeongguk strokes the top of Jimin’s head as he listens.

“But baby, you’re not just some Jeon Jeongguk walking around the streets, attending college classes. You’re the Jeon Jeongguk.” Jimin rambles. “Millions of people love you, adore you and obsess over you and if those millions of people find out you’re dating someone like—”

“Don’t finish that sentence.” Jeongguk interrupts. “Just don’t, Jimin.” his grip on Jimin loosens and he straightens up so that his chin no longer rests on Jimin’s neck.

Jimin knows he’s hit a nerve; Jeongguk’s entire demeanor screams agitated and put off. He doesn’t like it when Jimin gets like this—pessimistic yet honest. He doesn’t like it, but he listens because Jimin’s only speaking the truth. Everything he said carries weight and facts Jeongguk doesn’t like to hear.

Jimin pushes his hair out of his eyes with a heavy sigh and the once comfortable atmosphere fills with tension. Neither of them speak for the next five minutes; they sit beside each other with the tips of their fingers touching.

Jeongguk looks to their touching fingers and silently slides his palm over Jimin’s hand.

Jimin looks at their hands and then looks up.

Jeongguk’s looking at him—his round eyes drift across Jimin’s face as if he’s trying to take him all in and the corners of his lips begin to slowly curl up. He squeezes Jimin’s hand apologizing with his actions and silently leans over to pull Jimin into a hug.

Jimin opens the video he just downloaded to make sure the quality is right before dragging it into the Sony Vegas software. It’s a clip Jeongguk uploaded on Twitter a few months ago when his hair hadn’t reached its “final form.”

Jimin smiles as he watches the clip, endeared by the way Jeongguk runs his fingers through his hair. He’s lovely and handsome and all the synonyms of beautiful. But…but he’s BTS’ Jungkook.

Jimin’s phone buzzes and he isn’t thinking it’ll be Jeongguk since he left not too long ago, so he’s surprised to see that it is.

Gguk

Gguk

In case u miss me

Gguk

I know wht ur gonna say: but I’m seeing u tonight

 

He calls me baby

No

He calls me baby

I was actually gonna say

He calls me baby

I miss you all the time

He calls me baby

I want to see you all the time

Gguk

Jimin??

Gguk

Is this rlly u jimin???

He calls me baby

Shut up

He calls me baby

Here i am trying to have a moment and u just…

Gguk

lol I’m jk

Gguk

I miss u all the time too <3

He calls me baby

<3

Gguk

jimin

He calls me baby

Wht….

Gguk

i love u

He calls me baby

……

He calls me baby

love u too

Jeongguk smiles down at his phone before tucking it away. He reaches between his legs to pluck up the camera he carries with him and turns it on. His camera roll is filled with clips and pictures of Jimin, the 5% that remains are clips of his hyungs goofing around backstage or in the dorm. Jeongguk started filming not long after meeting Jimin—it was like something in him had awakened. He started with nature shots and casual shots of Jimin eating ice-cream or sleeping. Then he progressed to filming. He likes what a film can convey—since videos are moving, people can translate what the video is right away and the meaning it carries. When Jeongguk films Jimin, he films him with an unmeasurable amount of love and admiration.

Jeongguk loves Jimin, but he also respects him as his boyfriend and as a performer. If Jimin didn’t love dance so much, Jeongguk’s a thousand percent sure he would’ve been an idol. Maybe in another life they would’ve debuted in the same group.

Later that night…

“Damn, you look hot as fuck.” Jeongguk comments as he looks Hoseok up and down.

“D’you think Taehyung will think so?” Hoseok questions as he adjusts the garter around his thigh.

“Pretty sure he’ll be sending me thirst emojis by the end of the night.”

Hoseok laughs at that as they step into the club. Strobe lights fill their vision and loud music pounds against their ears. The club is smoky and dark, and it’s hard to see in front of them so Jeongguk latches onto Hoseok’s shoulders as he walks towards the bar.

“Do you see Jimin yet?” Jeongguk yells over the music

Hoseok shakes his head, “Can’t see shit.” He grumbles. “What’s he wearing?”

“Uhm, he said a black bomber with musical notes on it, black skinny jeans and a….” Jeongguk trails off.

Hoseok stops in the middle of the dance floor to look over his shoulder at Jeongguk. “And a what?”

“Harness…”

“A what?”

Jeongguk’s hands drop from Hoseok’s shoulders and he dazedly brushes past him. With an agitated sigh, Hoseok follows him.

Jeongguk keeps his eyes trained on Jimin taking in the way he holds his glass of liquor while laughing at something Taehyung said. There’s someone else with them; he looks to be around the same age as Jimin, maybe even younger. The unknown-guy regards Jimin with an intensity similar to Jeongguk’s. Unknown-guy laughs while his eyes skate across Jimin’s frame. Jeongguk doesn’t like it. At all.

“Oh!” Hoseok suddenly exclaims upon noticing the trio. “There they are.” Hoseok rushes past Jeongguk and excitedly greets Jimin.

“Hoseok!” Jimin opens his arms wide and embraces him. “You made it.”

“We said we would.” Hoseok smiles at Jimin before turning to look at Taehyung. He isn’t at all prepared for what he sees.

“Hey.” Taehyung says with a lopsided grin.

“H-hey…” Hoseok looks between Taehyung and Jimin and points to their harnesses. “Matching?”

Jimin beams, “We decided to go for a couple look.”

“Yin and Yang but with harnesses.” Taehyung explains. “Ya like?”

Hoseok swallows thickly because he more than likes—he loves it. “Yeah. Totally.”

Jimin smirks and shoots Taehyung a “knew he would” look.

“They both look hot.” Unknown-guy pipes in.

Hoseok eyes him suspiciously. “And you are….?”

“Sungwoon,” he extends a hand towards Hoseok. “Jimin and I were high school friends.”

Hoseok hesitantly shakes his hand.

Sensing his unease, Sungwoon flashes an easy-going smile. “I can keep a secret.”

Hoseok laughs uneasily. “Right…”

Snapping out of his Jimin induced haze, Jeongguk walks up to them and wastes no time attaching himself to Jimin’s hip. He does so silently and a lot like a puppy claiming its owner.

Sungwoon’s attention shifts to Jeongguk then down to Jeongguk’s hand around Jimin’s waist. He smirks. “Jeon Jeongguk, right?” he asks.

Jeongguk nods, “That’s me.”

“Your vocals are amazing.”

“Thanks.”

Sungwoon continues smiling as he takes a swig from his wine glass. “I wanted to be a singer in high school.” He suddenly confesses. “Jimin can tell you all about that.”

Jimin’s eyebrows furrow and confusion is written all over his face. “Why would I tell him that? You have a mouth and it obviously works.”

Jeongguk snorts at Jimin’s snarky remark.

“You’re always so mean.” Sungwoon whines. “That’s why I liked you.”

Jimin laughs indignantly. “You’re still holding onto that?” he shakes his head. “You were confused and young and I was pretty for a guy.”

Jeongguk looks between them. He’s missing something here. “Jimin, what…”

Jimin lightly touches Jeongguk’s hand, “It’s nothing.”

The conversation continues with Sungwoon leading most of it until he gets drunk and wanders off to mess around on the dance floor. Hoseok and Taehyung are talking closely as they exchange light touches and tinkering laughs. It’s a nice sight, Jeongguk notes with a warm smile.

“They look good together, hm?” Jimin asks softly.

Jeongguk nods, “Yeah.” His hand idly strokes Jimin’s hip. “Still think we look better.”

“Mm, we do.”

Jeongguk laughs. “Anyways, I thought you were wearing something else.”

“I was and then Tae and I started talking so I changed at the last second.” Jimin explains. He turns around so they stand face to face and chest to chest. “Does it look okay?”

Jeongguk squints at Jimin skeptically. “You know it looks more than okay, stop messing with me.”

“I’m just asking a question.” Jimin plays with the button on Jeongguk’s shirt. “What? I can’t ask questions now?” he looks up, eyes round and coy. 

Jeongguk releases a disgruntled noise as he cups Jimin’s face. He squishes his cheeks together and steals a quick kiss. “You look gorgeous, angel.”

“How gorgeous?”

“Gorgeous enough to make me give it all up.” He whispers.

Satisfied with his answer, Jimin takes Jeongguk’s hand and they slip onto the dancefloor. Sweaty and hot bodies suddenly push against them. It’s uncomfortable but its safe. The smoky haze, the loud music and the dark makes it hard for Jeongguk’s identity to be discovered. It also helps that this club is popular amongst celebrities, so he knows most of the people here.

“You look good too!” Jimin yells slinging his arms over Jeongguk’s shoulders.

Jeongguk rests his hands on Jimin’s hips. “Really?”

“Yeah.”

Yeah?” Jeongguk scoffs. “I need you to tell me more.”

“You need me?” Jimin stares into Jeongguk’s eyes seemingly put off by Jeongguk’s arrogance.

“Fine,” Jeongguk tightens his grip on Jimin’s hips and softens his voice. “Angel, would you please tell me more.”

Jimin smirks, “Okay, but not here.”

“Why not? No one can hear you.”

“Yeah, but baby, you won’t be able to walk.”

Jeongguk’s eyebrows draw together and he begins to speak but stops when Jimin leans up to whisper in his ear. As he’s listening, his eyes widen with each word Jimin whispers into his ear. He whispers about Jeongguk’s jeans and his shirt and everything that’s beneath. And as he’s talking, his hands drag from Jeongguk’s shoulders to rest against his chest.

Jeongguk sighs deeply as Jimin finishes speaking and his face flushes.

Jimin leans back with a wicked smile. “Got it?”

“Yeah,” Jeongguk licks his lips. “got it.”

The night carries on and they dance together while whispering sweet nothings into the darkness. Jimin loves this moment, wishes he could live in it forever. Loves how he can dance with Jeongguk and steal kisses out in the open. What he loves the most though are Jeongguk’s eyes on him. Even as people bump into them, not once does Jeongguk look away from him. It’s moment like these that remind Jimin: yes, he really does love me.

“What?” Jeongguk asks and his eyes are smiling as he looks at Jimin.

“Nothing.”

“You’re staring awfully hard.”

Jimin laughs softly, “Because I’m still having a hard time accepting that you’re mine.”

“We’ve been together for nearly two years now,” Jeongguk says. “shouldn’t you start accepting it?”

“I am.” Jimin rests his head against Jeongguk’s chest. “Bit by bit, I am.”

 

One day before the article release

Jeongguk awakes in the dorm; memories fresh from last night replay in his mind as he goes about his morning routine with a smile. He passes Seokjin in the hall who stops him with a hand on his shoulder.

“What?”

“Have you spoken with Namjoon yet?” Seokjin asks.

“No, why?”

“He was looking for you last night.”

Confusion settles onto his face. “What? Why?”

Seokjin shrugs, “Dunno, but you should go talk to him.”

“Yeah—uhm, where is he?”

“His room.” Seokjin squeezes Jeongguk’s shoulder before brushing past him.

Jeongguk stands in the hallway, thinking for a moment what it is Namjoon wants to speak with him about. It probably has something to do with Jimin. Lately their conversations have always shifted from music to Jimin.

“How’s Jimin doing?”

“Are you being wary of places you go?”

“Make sure you dress a certain way.”

“Be careful.”

Jeongguk knocks on Namjoon’s room door.

“It’s open!” Namjoon calls.

Jeongguk pushes the door open and peeps his head inside. “Hyung, you called?”

Namjoon spins around in his desk chair and smiles at Jeongguk. “Yeah I wanted to talk.”

“About?”

“Close the door first.”

Jeongguk does as he’s told and slinks over to sit on the edge of Namjoon’s bed.

“You’re not in trouble or anything so stop sulking.” Namjoon says with a light laugh.

Jeongguk straightens up and clasps his hands together in his lap.

 “How was last night?” Namjoon asks.

“Go—great. Hoseok-hyung had a great time with Taehyung.”

“What about you and Jimin?”

Jeongguk bites his bottom lip, “We…”

In the backseat of his car, Jimin straddles Jeongguk’s lap and grabs a fistful of Jeongguk’s hair in his hands.

“Jimin,” Jeongguk huffs. “I don’t want us to ruin your car.”

Jimin kisses Jeongguk’s neck.

“Fuc—Jimin are you listening to me?” Jeongguk asks as he places a hand to Jimin’s hip to hold him in place.

Jimin nods absentmindedly as he slips a hand down to cup Jeongguk’s crotch. “Y-yeah,”

“Do you care about your car?”

Jimin straightens up and looks down at Jeongguk with pleading eyes. “I do but…”

“But?”

Jimin sucks on his bottom lip. “Exams start soon, and rumors of your comeback are circulating, so…”

Jeongguk lifts a hand to Jimin’s face. “Jimin…”

“I want to be with you in every way possible and for as long as possible before then.” Jimin adds.

Jeongguk smiles sweetly at him and coaxes Jimin towards him so they can kiss. “I’m really not okay with taking you in the back of a car though…”

“No, no, I was thinking we could…” Jimin’s fingers slip past Jeongguk’s boxers until they find what they’re looking for. “…do the bare minimum?”

“We uhm…had fun too.” Jeongguk awkwardly clears his throat.

“Uh-huh…” Namjoon decides to stop his interrogation for the sake of his sanity. “Anyways, you’re being careful, right?”

“Hyung, you know I am.”

Namjoon sighs, “I know, I know, but Yoongi had a small scare the other day.”

Jeongguk shifts on the bed and looks to Namjoon worriedly. “Why? Did something happen?”

Namjoon shakes his head, “No…not really; a couple fans recognized him when he was out.”

“Oh…”

“Yeah…” Namjoon reaches over to squeeze Jeongguk’s thigh. “You know I’m only saying this to protect you and Jimin, and what you have.”

“I know.” Jeongguk laughs bitterly. “But it just feels like a constant reminder of what we can’t be.”

Namjoon listens as his eyebrows draw together empathetically.

“We must hide, act and dress a certain way, see each other at certain times of the day, like a walking secret.” Jeongguk rambles.  “And I get it, I do, but sometimes the nasty thought of not being an idol invades my mind.”

They’ve had this conversation numerous times since Jeongguk started dating Jimin. Each time Jeongguk would reach the same conclusion: Jimin or BTS and that’s not something he’s willing to choose between. Without one there wouldn’t be the other.

“Jeongguk,” Namjoon calls tentatively.

Jeongguk sighs, “I know…we’ll continue being careful.”

 

<3

 

In the university library, Jimin shifts through his notes and highlights the parts the professor went over in class. Exams begin next week, and he hasn’t been studying as hard as he should be. With a sigh, Jimin slams his notebook shut and leans back in his chair. 

“God, I’m so tired.” He groans running a hand down his face.

“Tired?”

Jimin tilts his head back to see who’s speaking. It’s Sungwoon.

“Hey.” Jimin greets.

Sungwoon takes the seat beside Jimin, “Hey.”

Jimin straightens up in his seat and pins Sungwoon with a puzzled look. “What brings you here?”

“Eh studying.” Sungwoon replies.

“Mm.”

Jimin doesn’t bother to continue the conversation; he and Sungwoon fell off after high-school and aren’t as close as they used to be. Sungwoon likes to act like things are the same when they clearly aren’t and sometimes Jimin doesn’t mind humoring him, but today isn’t one of those days.

“How’s Jeongguk?” Sungwoon asks suddenly.

Jimin stares into his eyes confused as to why he’s asking about Jeongguk. “He’s fine…why?”

Sungwoon shrugs, “Just thought I’d ask.” He laughs and lightly touches Jimin’s knee beneath the table. “No need to get all tense.”

Jimin doesn’t like this. He knocks Sungwoon’s hand away.

“Are you dating him?” Sungwoon questions.

Jimin’s throat goes dry.

“I could tell by the way he held you.”

Jimin clutches his hands together in his lap. Shit.

“And how he looked at you.” Sungwoon’s tone suddenly shifts as he leans closer to Jimin. “You don’t have to worry.”

Jimin leans away. “Of course, I don’t.” he smiles thinly, veiling his discomfort with ease. “You won’t say anything.” Jimin gather’s his books and quickly stuffs them into his bag. “Have a good day, Sungwoon.”

Jimin walks quickly towards the exit, his heart racing as a million thoughts fly through his mind. Jimin’s always considered himself a mediocre judger of character. He’s always been cautious about others and chooses his friends wisely. He didn’t invite Sungwoon that night at the club. They stumbled into each other, got to talking and before Jimin realized it, Jeongguk was already at his side. He figured it was fine since Jeongguk didn’t seem fazed by Sungwoon’s questions and demeanor, but suddenly Jimin feels nauseous as he recalls Sungwoon’s somewhat threatening tone.

This isn’t good. He fumbles for his phone and quickly texts Jeongguk.

He calls me baby

hey…we should talk about last night

He calls me baby

something is bothering me

He calls me baby

text me as soon as u can

Instead of receiving a text message, Jimin’s phone rings.

He answers immediately, “Jeongguk!”

“What is it? Are you okay?”

“I’m…I’m fine, I just…” Jimin bites his bottom lip.

“What, angel? I’m listening.” Jeongguk’s voice softens even more.

Jimin slips into the bathroom and locks himself inside one of the stalls. “I think we should…take a break from seeing each other.”

“What?”

“At least for a month.”

Why?” Jeongguk’s tone rises.

“I feel uneasy…I…” Jimin hesitates. “We need to be more careful.”

“Of course, we do, and we are being careful.” Jeongguk assures. “Everything’s going to be fine, we went out last night and nothing’s happened.”

Yet.”

Jeongguk curses under his breath and mumbles something Jimin can’t make out.

“Are you…getting upset?” Jimin questions tentatively.

“Yes and no.” Jeongguk sighs deeply. “I’m sorry, I’m not upset at you.”

Jimin leans against the stall door. “I’m sorry too…I just worry so much because…”

“I know.” Jeongguk murmurs. “Shit, I know Jimin and I’m sorry we always have this conversation.”

“Me too…”

The conversation lapses into silence and the haunting thought of breaking up weighs heavily on their shoulders. It’s always an option yet it will never be one they choose.

“Jimin…”

“Yes?”

“I was thinking,” Jeongguk pauses, licks his lips and swallows. “I could drop coded messages on Twitter about my relationship with you.”

Jimin scoffs, “Pretty sure that won’t go over well.”

“You never know.”

“Baby, no.”

“Jimin, just a selfie or something, maybe a shot of a rainbow because no one knows I’m gay.” Jeongguk rattles off numerous ideas of coming out without coming out.

“That’s stupid.” Jimin replies.

“Gee thanks.” Jeongguk says dryly.

“I’m not trying to be mean, but are you ready for that?”

“I’ve been ready since I joined BTS.” Jeongguk says matter-of-factly. “I hate feeling like I’m always hiding.”

“You are always hiding.”

“I shouldn’t have to.”

Jimin threads a hand through his hair and squeezes his eyes shut. “Gguk…”

“Jimin…I love you.”

“No…”

No?” Jeongguk’s voice tenses around the edges, it’s no longer as soft as it was at the beginning of their conversation.

“That’s not what I mea—”

“I have to go.”

“Jeongguk, come on.”

“We can talk about this in person.”

Jimin squeezes the bridge of his nose. “Jeongguk.”

“Wait, actually we can’t since that’s too much of a risk.” He responds petulantly. “Isn’t it?”

“Now you’re being unreasonable.” Jimin snaps.

“I know.”

“Then stop it. I don’t like it.”

Jeongguk knows he’s being childish, selfish and even a bit malicious to act this way towards Jimin. The Park Jimin whom he loves so much. But their relationship feels like a cycle of repeated arguments and never changing fears.

Jimin releases a shaky breath, “I’m going to be late to class.”

“Jimin, I—”

“I’m sorry.” Jimin interjects. “I know you are.” He opens the stall door.

“I was going to say I’m stupid. I’m an idiot.” After a brief pause, Jeongguk adds. “And I’m also sorry.”

Jimin laughs softly and his previous frustration dissipates. Their arguments never last long despite the heavy content.

“I’m trying to protect us.” Jimin says lightly.

“I know.”

“Well,” Jimin clears his throat. “I really have to go though.”

“Alright, I’ll let you go then.”

“Mmkay.”

The line clicks and Jimin’s hand drops to his side. He lifts his head and stares back at his reflection. His expression twists painfully as it dawns on him that dating Jeongguk will never be as easy as he hoped.

Chapter Text

The day of the article release

“Let’s go again from the top.” The producer instructs.

Jeongguk nods as he adjusts his headphones. He clears his throat, takes a deep breath and starts again, but he stops mid-verse and bites his bottom lip in frustration.

“Try again.” The producer directs as he starts the track from the beginning.

Jeongguk curses under his breath, nods and tries again and again, and again.

The producer signals for him to take off his headphones and presses a button so Jeongguk can hear his voice in the studio. “You okay?”

“Yeah, uhm…” Jeongguk drags a hand down his face. “I’m fine, I’ll try again.”

The producer eyes him worriedly before twirling his finger signaling for Jeongguk to go again. Jeongguk takes a deep breath, he closes his eyes and tries to push out the thoughts in his head. Thoughts which center around his conversation with Jimin from the day before.

He’s always trying to protect us, why does he put so much pressure on himself? Jeongguk thinks as his grip on the headset tightens. He hasn’t texted since then or called. Shit.

“Jeongguk,” the producer calls again.

Jeongguk looks up.

“Why don’t we take a break?”

Jeongguk begins to protest but decides against it. With a slight nod of his head, he slides the headset off and rushes out of the studio and into the hall. He promptly falls onto one of the benches and buries his face in his hands. They’re supposed to be recording the title song of their new album, but Jeongguk’s been in the studio since 7am and he’s only completed the first couple of verses. It’s unlike him to take several recordings, usually he’s done in one take.

“Jeongguk?”

Jeongguk looks up and is met with Seokjin’s inquiring gaze.

“What’re you doing out here?”

Jeongguk slides over to make room for him on the bench. “Taking a fifteen.”

“Why?” Seokjin settles down beside him. “That’s unlike you.”

Jeongguk snorts, “I know right…a lot of things have been unlike me lately.”

Seokjin’s eyebrows furrow as he takes in Jeongguk’s distraught expression. “It’s because of Jimin, isn’t it?” he questions lightly.

Jeongguk chews on his bottom lip opting to remain silent.

“You can talk to me—any of us for that matter.” Seokjin adds. “We’re rooting for you both.”

“You are and so is everyone else…everyone aside from my boyfriend.” Jeongguk mutters.

“Jeongguk you know that’s not true; you know he wants the best for both of you.” Seokjin assures as he rests a hand to Jeongguk’s shoulder. “Honestly…he’s looking out for your best interest.”

“And that’s what I hate.” Jeongguk mutters.

This statement baffles Seokjin, so much so that his grip on Jeongguk loosens and he leans back to peer at him questionably. “I’m confused…why would you…” he straightens up. “Why would you hate that?”

Jeongguk lifts his head and stares into Seokjin’s eyes. “Hyung, Jimin and I always talk about going public, our relationship lately seems to revolve around that topic and sometimes, when he says that he’s trying to protect me—us—all I hear is that he doesn’t trust me.”

“Jeongguk…”

“Like…like he doesn’t trust the strength of our relationship.” Jeongguk chews anxiously on his bottom lip as millions of thoughts fly through his head. The same thoughts from yesterday and even from a year ago. Can we really last? Can Jimin and I really make it through this?

“Are you hearing yourself right now?”

“Yep. Loud and clear.” Jeongguk replies flatly.

Seokjin sighs, “You think Jimin doesn’t trust you? The same Jimin who blindly supported you years before he knew you as Jeongguk? The same Jimin who timidly asks us about you during music shows and tells us things that’ll lift your spirits when he can’t reach you.”

“Hyun—”

“No, no, let me finish because what you and Jimin have only comes once in a lifetime Jeongguk and I would hate, I would hate,” Seokjin emphasizes. “for you to lose that.”

Jeongguk presses his lips together as Seokjin’s words weigh heavily on his mind. He has a point, as he always does and Jeongguk knows that. He knows Jimin only wants what’s best for them, but part of him can’t help but want more.

“I just…I think about all the things we’ve done as BTS and what we’ve accomplished with our Love Yourself Campaign and UNICEF and I want to bring the same amount of change with Jimin.” Jeongguk rambles. “I want people to see us and think: ‘wow…I can love whoever I want to love.’ I want them to feel free.”

“I get that Jeongguk and I respect it, but…it’s not that easy.” Seokjin stares blankly at the wall across from them as he reminisces about their trainee days. “You see how long it took us to get to where we are now.”

“I know it takes time.”

“You say that, but I honestly don’t think you get it.” He turns to meet Jeongguk’s gaze again. “You want to bring change to the world, but have you stopped to think about what Jimin wants? Have you thought about how such change will affect his life?”

And then it hits Jeongguk. Realization knocks him hard in the chest as he brings a trembling hand up to his mouth. Jimin’s life…Jimin’s life is full of opportunity and growth, peaceful mornings and hectic nights as he studies into the darkest hours. It’s during those hours as Jeongguk’s rehearsing for performance after performance that Jimin chooses to text him encouraging messages. Messages full of sarcasm and love, messages for Jeongguk’s eyes only. Messages Jimin has taken the time to write when he could be studying. He does all of that and more because he loves Jeongguk.

Jimin’s quiet life. The life he’s worked his ass off to build, could crumble down so easily with the mention of Jeongguk’s name alongside his.

“Shit.” He whispers. “I’m so stupid.”

“You’re not stu…well, maybe just a little.” Seokjin cracks.

Jeongguk shoves him in the shoulder before jumping to his feet. “I have to go back in the studio, but I’ll contact Jimin the second I’m done.”

Seokjin flashes a soft smile as he slowly raises a thumbs up. “Atta boy.”

Jeongguk rolls his eyes expressing his distaste with Seokjin’s choice of words before slipping inside the studio.

 

<3

 

“Sooooo,” Taehyung begins as he stares back at Jimin who’s mindlessly swirling his chopsticks around his plate. “you had a fight?”

“No…not…”

Taehyung makes an “oh really” face which causes his left eyebrow to shoot up high on his forehead.

Jimin sighs, “Okay, we got into an argument.”

“A fight.”

“It wasn’t a fight, Tae, we just…disagreed.”

“Uh-huh.”

Jimin’s chopsticks clatter against his plate as he clenches his hands into a fist. “He just…he doesn’t get it.”

“Maybe there’s nothing to get.” Taehyung replies.

“You don’t understand, yesterday when I said we should take a break he got so…. triggered.”

Taehyung laughs.

“It’s not funny.”

“No, no, sorry, but honey, listen.” Taehyung reaches over and covers Jimin’s hands with his own. “If my boyfriend of nearly two years, the man I love with every fiber of my being said we should take a break…I’d be a little triggered too.”

“I said it because I felt uneasy at the time.” Jimin explains.

“Did you tell him that?”

Jimin runs a hand through his hair. “I tried but then he started rambling about posting on Twitter and coming out to his fans and I shut him down.”

“How did you shut him down?”

“I just…”

“Jimin…” Taehyung presses.

Jimin shifts his gaze and stares blankly at the food on his plate. “I told him it was stupid.”

“Ouch.”

“And I apologized because that was mean.”

“It was.” Taehyung agrees pulling his hand away and leaning back in his chair.

“He’s just so sensitive and kind and a little…naïve.”

“And you want to protect him.” Taehyung concludes. “Is that it?”

“Yes and no.”

“He’s a grown ass man, Jimin.”

“I know.”

“You can’t protect him.”

“I know that too.” Jimin’s foot begins to tap anxiously against the hardwood floor.

“He can protect himself.” Taehyung continues.

“I know, Tae.” The tapping continues.

“Just trust him.”

Jimin swallows, “I want to.”

“Then do it.”

“It’s not…” Jimin releases a shaky breath. “It’s not that easy.”

Taehyung leans forward, “Why?”

“Because…”

Tap. Tap. Tap.

“Why, Jimin?”

TAP. TAP. TAP

“Hm?”

“Because I’m scared!” Jimin exclaims and the tapping stops.

Taehyung stares at Jimin wide-eyed.

“I’m scared…”

Taehyung notices Jimin’s shaking hands and in lightning speed, he jumps up from his seat and rushes to Jimin’s side. “I’m sorry.” He says quickly. “I didn’t mean to take it that far.”

Jimin brushes it off, “I know.” He laughs. “It kinda helped.”

Taehyung gently threads his fingers through Jimin’s hair while holding him close.

“I guess I’m still emotionally scarred from my previous relationship.” Jimin confesses.

“Have you talked to Jeongguk about him? Your ex?”

“I mean…” Jimin tilts his head back to meet Taehyung’s gaze. “A little.”

Taehyung playfully boops him on the nose. “Talk to him about it and go from there.” He walks around the table and settles back in the chair with a loud groan. “Obviously he loves you. So just be honest.”

“Yeah…well,” Jimin claps his hands as he jumps to his feet. “Since I don’t have class until another two hours, I’m gonna chill in my room.”

“Do whatever.” Taehyung shoos him off.

Jimin gathers his dishes and quickly tosses them into the sink to clean later before slipping into his bedroom. He closes the door behind him, and dives face first into his pillows. He snuggles against them and inhales deeply. It smells like him. Keeping his hold on a pillow, he sits up and clutches the pillow close to his chest. He fumbles a bit for his laptop but manages to flip it open and log into his YouTube account.

There’s several comments since the last time he uploaded which was a few days ago. Most of them pertain to his song selection (which is in the video for fucks sake) while others are thirsting over Jeongguk.

babydepth: step onMEEEE pls

imonlyhereforbts: -insert woman tying hair and knee brace meme-

Jimin smirks at that one.

hopeworldian: he literally goes from 0 to 100 like WTF

hopeworldian: also, can I **** his ****

Jimin snorts because he did that just last week—amongst other things. He doesn’t read comments often because there was a point where he received hate for editing Jeongguk a “certain way.” So-called fans deemed his edits “gross” and ranted on and on about what Jeongguk would think if he saw such edits.

xxxx: this is gross. Jeongguk wouldn’t like this

xxxx2: you should stop…ew

  1. Jimin knows what Jeongguk thinks about his edits
  2. Jeongguk’s a lot kinkier than his fans realize and
  3. Jeongguk’s his own person

Jimin sighs deeply as he goes through hearting comments that make him laugh and replying to a few that are worth his time. He goes to press heart on another comment but somehow accidentally ends up refreshing the page. He curses under his breath as the page reloads and surprisingly there’s several more comments beneath his latest video.

Jjk1: is this him?

Jungkook’s_bby: he’s a fan?????

Reactor101: whaaaaaaat?????

There’s also new comments beneath his latest livestream:

Sadgirl: he’s kinda cute tho

Alexlincoln: mayb it’s not him

Jimin’s eyes flicker across the screen at lightning speed as new comments come flooding in.

who does he think he is??

i like his eyes

his lips are pretty too

oh my god are they fxcvking each other???

oppa would never

there’s no way jungkook’s gay

I’D GO GAY FOR THIS GUY wtf

“What…” Jimin’s heart kicks up in speed. “what the hell?”

ilovehobi: I found his insta~

Jimin’s heart drops. What’s going on? Suddenly his phone goes off with notifications from Instagram and his door flies open. He turns to face the door and stares at Taehyung who’s staring back at him with a frantic expression and heaving chest.

“Jimin…”

“What?”

Taehyung walks silently towards him and points to his laptop. “Give me that.”

“What? Why? You’re scaring me.” Jimin pushes his pillow aside and holds his laptop protectively in his arms.

“Okay, fine, just…” Taehyung starts pacing back and forth. “You can pause comments on YouTube, right?”

“I can restrict them…” Jimin replies. “Why?” his eyebrows furrow.

Taehyung doesn’t reply instead he sits on the edge of the bed beside Jimin.

“Taehyung what’s going on?”

“Uhm,” Taehyung gnaws on his bottom lip as he contemplates how he should tell Jimin what he saw without causing him to freak out.

“Spit it out, Tae.”

Taehyung takes a deep breath as he slides his phone out of his jean pocket. “Someone…someone took a photo.” He begins slowly.

“Okay, and?”

Taehyung swallows, “They…they know, Jimin.”

Suddenly Jimin’s back in his senior year of high school and staring at his parents who he had just come out to. That dread, anxiety, fear and heartache knocks the breath out of him like it did all those years ago.

“They know about you and Jeongguk.” Taehyung finishes.

 

<3

 

Approximately thirty minutes later, Jeongguk’s back at the dorm, showered and exhausted. Luckily, he was able to finish the recording with one take (much to the producer’s pleasure) and was sent to the dorm until their next schedule at four.

Jeongguk slips into his room and falls face first into his bed. The first person on his mind is Jimin. I need to make things right. He pats himself down in search of his phone and his expression brightens when he sees that Jimin messaged him.

He calls me baby

Gguk…are u at the dorm???

Gguk

Yeah, I just got back

Gguk

I was just about to txt u : )

He calls me baby

Check Naver

Gguk

No hi, how’s your day…. : ((

He calls me baby

Just pls…check

Gguk

…okay…?

Jeongguk exits out of his messenger and opens up Naver. Written across the top of the page is his name.

BTS’ JEON JUNGKOOK INVOLVED IN POSSIBLE DATING SCANDAL.

“…the fuck.” He exhales as he clicks on the article. The page instantly loads, and a dark photo takes over his screen. It’s a bad photo—dark and their faces are barely recognizable, but Jeongguk knows. With just one look at the photo he knows.

He calls me baby

gguk…this is bad

He calls me baby

jeongguk

He calls me baby

they found out where I work?????

He calls me baby

they got my fucking number?????

He calls me baby

i’m scared wtf

He calls me baby

what do we do???

He calls me baby

fuck…no…FUCK

Jeongguk looks to the photo on his computer screen and takes a deep breath as he texts Jimin back.

Gguk

Are you home?

He calls me baby

Yeah, I’m with tae

Gguk

Good, great

He calls me baby

What do we do?? I’m trying not to freak out but that’s hard to do when millions of people are flooding my insta with insults and questions and other bs

Gguk

I’m so sorry, angel

 

Gguk

I’m sorry

He calls me baby

You’re not to blame, baby, I know that

He calls me baby

I just thought we would have more time to think about what to do….

“Shit.” Jeongguk mutters. He never wanted it to happen like this—rushed and unexpected and so wrong. Every part of him wanted this to happen differently and maybe it still can.

He calls me baby

What do we do, Jeongguk…?

Gguk

We…be honest

He calls me baby

What does that mean Jeongguk?

Jeongguk takes a deep breath because what he’s about to do will most definitely change his life and how his fans view him. Some may think it selfish; others may applaud his strength and label him as brave. He might lose fans and amidst it all, he may gain a few. He opens Twitter, logs onto the official BTS account and creates his first post in a long time.

Within seconds, the retweets, comments and likes hit the thousands. Jeongguk reaches for his phone and calls Jimin.

“Hello?” Jimin answers immediately and Jeongguk is quick to pick up on the tremor in his voice.

“Angel,” he exhales. “I wish I could be with you right now.”

“I’m okay, just a little freaked out.” Jimin replies, he forces himself to laugh, but it resonates hollowly.

“You don’t need to lie to me, Jimin, it’s okay to not be okay.”

Jimin laughs again, “I know that, I’m keeping up a strong front for your sake because I know you, Gguk…I know you’ll blame yourself for this.”

Jeongguk presses his lips together as he tries to figure out what their next steps are. Obviously, Bighit’s going to call for a meeting…but what’s after that?

“Jeongguk,”

“Yeah?”

“What did you post on Twitter?” Jimin hesitantly questions.  When a response doesn’t come, Jimin asks again. “What did you post, Jeongguk?”

“Just a…a photo of when we went out to the park that day when it was raining.”

April 17, 2018

“I thought you said you checked the forecast?” Jimin mutters, arms crossed, and lips rolled out cutely.

“Well, you see what had happened…” Jeongguk begins but Jimin shushes him with an assertive glare.

With a sigh, Jimin reaches for Jeongguk’s hand on the steering wheel. “The rain sucks, but we can still have fun…I’m just happy to be with you.” He softly uses a finger to trace a heart on Jeongguk’s wrist.

Jeongguk’s eyes widen as he takes in Jimin’s quickly reddening cheeks and downcast eyes. “God, you’re so precious.” He blurts.

Jimin simpers, “I know.”

Jeongguk scoffs but leans over to steal a kiss.

Initially, they planned for a park date to relieve the stress of Jimin’s final exams and Jeongguk’s comeback showcase chaos. However, in his haste, Jeongguk checked the forecast for tomorrow instead of today.

The kiss escalates into something more intense as Jeongguk’s hands find solace in Jimin’s hair, he tugs gently and Jimin whines into his mouth. Which edges Jeongguk on to do more; his hands slide from Jimin’s hair to his nape and then lower.

Jimin kisses Jeongguk one last time before pulling away. “No, no, nope, not today, sir.”

Jeongguk sucks on his bottom lip and tightly grips the steering wheel as he gathers himself. Once he’s tucked his libido away, he says, “You know we haven’t seen each other for nearly two months.”

 “I know and with good reason.” Jimin flips the mirror down to adjust his hair.

Jeongguk watches Jimin as he fluffs and tucks his hair and decides now wouldn’t be an appropriate time to have the conversation he has in mind. So, he rolls down the car window and sticks a hand out.

“It’s slowing down.” He says softly.

Jimin turns away from his reflection and looks outside. “It is.”

They simultaneously turn to each other and with one look in the eye, they instantly understand. It’s how things usually go between them—they speak with their eyes and with gestures and are immediately understood by one another.

Jimin is the first to step out of the car and Jeongguk follows his lead. They stand beneath the rain and look up to the slowly brightening sky.

“It’s beautiful.” Jimin murmurs as gentle drops of rain glisten in his hair.

Jeongguk walks around the car to stand beside Jimin, he slides an arm around his shoulder and Jimin naturally leans into him. “You know what they say about couples who stand in the rain together and see a rainbow together…?” Jeongguk abruptly begins.

And just to humor him, Jimin asks, “What?”

“They stay together.”

Jimin rolls his eyes but he’s laughing because no matter how cheesy or cliché Jeongguk is, he knows Jeongguk does it to make him smile.  

“But where’s our rainbow?” Jimin questions.

Present

“Remember how the rainbow popped out after you asked me that?”

“Yeah…but what does that have to do wi—”

“I posted a photo of the rainbow, Jimin.” Jeongguk says. “That’s what I posted to Twitter.”

Jimin’s silent for a few seconds before a soft “oh” escapes his lips.

Jeongguk starts to respond but suddenly the door to his room slams open.

Hoseok’s standing in the doorway with horror and dread written all over his face. “They called us in for a meeting.”

“Wait, what?” Jimin’s voice echoes from the phone causing Hoseok to gawk.

“You’re talking to Jimin? Is he okay?”

Jeongguk nods, “Freaked out but Tae’s with him.”

“Good, uhm,” Hoseok swallows. “we have to go.”

“Okay, Jimin I’ll call you later.”

“Call me when you can, okay?”

Jeongguk smiles softly, “Okay.”

When the line clicks, Jimin tucks his phone away and looks up dazedly at Taehyung.

“What? Why’re you looking at me like that?”

“I’m just thinking…” Jimin idly fidgets with the tear of his jeans.

“About…wait!” Taehyung holds up a hand. “If you dare say breaking up, I’ll punch you right now.”

“If I end things with him then…then he’ll have a chance to—”

Taehyung punches him in the chest lightly but with enough force for Jimin to choke up.

“We just finished talking about this, Jimin.”

“I know but I could ruin everything for him.” Jimin clutches his chest. “This article alone is about to fuck everything up.”

“And how do you know that?” Taehyung points to Jimin’s laptop where comments are still flooding in. “How do you know that this’ll ruin him? It could make him stronger, hell, call me crazy but maybe he’s rejoicing because he doesn’t have to hide something as beautiful as you and something as precious as the relationship between you two.”

Jimin rips off a loose piece of fabric from his jeans and tosses it aside as emotions continue to build inside him.

“Let today pass before you decide anything.” Taehyung adds patting Jimin on his thigh.

Jimin allows this to sink in before making a grab for his phone, but Taehyung beats him to it. “Tae, what the hell?”

“Promise me.” Taehyung holds the phone away from Jimin’s grasping hands.

“What?” Jimin snaps.

“Mute your comments, okay?”

Jimin rolls his eyes, “I can handle a few comments.”

“I know you can, that’s why I’m telling you to mute them for the sake of Jeongguk’s fans.” Taehyung tosses Jimin his phone back. “Save them the humiliation.”

Jimin catches his phone with a laugh. “Oh, come on, I’ve been dying for a little stress release.” He jokes, but his smile falters.

Taehyung stares at him, his brown eyes full of warmth yet they penetrate so deep.

Jimin shrinks in on himself because Taehyung always sees through him so easily.

“Take care of yourself, okay?” Taehyung pulls him into a side hug.

Jimin melts into his arms while nodding. “Okay.”

 

<3

 

The ride up on the elevator is suffocating to say the least; all five members of BTS are crunched inside with numerous thoughts are their minds.

Hoseok sighs, “When was the last time we were called up for something like this?”

“Two years ago.” Yoongi deadpans. “They caught Namjoon, Namjooning with his aunt and articles were released saying it was his girlfriend.”

Seokjin snorts, “I remember that.”

“It was lowkey funny.” Jeongguk murmurs.

“Lowkey scary too.” Namjoon says flatly.

The elevator dings and they file out into the hallway. Namjoon leads the way with his shoulders pushed back and head high. He always goes into meetings like this with such confidence.

“You can love who you love, and no one should have control over that.” He so coolly said to Jeongguk one night.  

Once they reach the conference room, Namjoon flashes them an easy-going smile as if to say: “We’ll be alright.” Before opening the door.

Chapter Text

For Jeongguk, there are two life changing moments in his life. The first one being his debut. He was young and naïve but was raised by caring young boys. He found himself in them. They experienced so much; grew, won and lost, and cried together.

The second life changing moment is when he sent that very first message to Jimin: ‘I honestly shouldn’t be doing this, but…I will anyways. Don’t freak out, but ur edits are AMAZING. Thanks for inflating my ego and being hella cute.’ That message was one of the best decisions Jeongguk’s made in his life because he met Jimin. The love of his life.

However, Jeongguk is about to make another life changing moment as he sits in the meeting room with the other members. Bang Si-hyuk sits at the middle of the table with a lax smile on his face and the members greet him with a bow before sitting around him. Si-hyuk asks them how their music is coming along and what not before addressing the elephant in the room.

“I’m sure you all know why you’re here.” Si-hyuk begins lightly.

Jeongguk clutches his hands together in his lap.

Si-hyuk cuts out the fluff and asks Jeongguk directly, “How do you want to go about handling this?”

Jeongguk looks up; he glances at the members before meeting Si-hyuk’s gaze.

“You all know there isn’t a dating ban,” Si-hyuk continues. “Never has been one and there never will be one. I don’t expect you all to act like robots—not date or fall in love—you’re young.”

Jeongguk remains silent.

“Young yet powerful and inspiring and even if you don’t want to, you must think about your actions because no matter what you do, no matter how small…it’ll be magnified times a thousand.” Si-hyuk finishes. “So, the question still stands…what do you want to do, Jeongguk?”

What do I want to do? I want to tell the truth; I want Army to know about Jimin and how special he is to me. Jeongguk’s leg taps anxiously beneath the table. But…my truth won’t affect only me. He looks around and his heart drops at the realization. This affects them too.

Jeongguk gnaws on his bottom lip before inquiring, “First…I want to know if the person who posted the photo has been found.”

Si-hyuk smiles, “Of course, that was the first thing we took care of moments after the story broke.”

Jeongguk relaxes a bit and wonders for a moment who it was that broke the story. Who could be capable of doing such a cruel thing? And like a light bulb flooding a room, his conversation with Jimin from the day before, floods his thoughts. Sungwoon?

“We’re doing everything possible to assure they aren’t able to do something like this again.” Si-hyuk adds.

This statement brings Jeongguk a little peace of mind, but it does nothing to quell his concern for Jimin.

“What about my…” he pauses. Thinking on it now, he’s never had this conversation with management or so formally with the members present. Jimin being his boyfriend has always remained unquestioned and comfortable—natural. “What about my boyfriend?”

Si-hyuk lifts a brow confusedly, “What about him?”

“I want to make sure he’s safe from the media, my fans or anyone who poses a threat to him.” Jeongguk replies.

“Ultimately, it’s up to him to make such a decision. Our primary concern is you and the group, Jeongguk.” Si-hyuk continues to calmly explain. “Caring for Jimin is…out of our control.”

Jeongguk releases a sigh and nods, “I understand.”

“We’ll give you some time to think about this.” Si-hyuk says, signaling an end to the meeting.

For Jeongguk there isn’t much to think about, he’s already made up his mind. To others, this meeting might’ve been meaningless, but Jeongguk’s glad he was given a chance to have his voice heard.

He takes a deep breath—slow and soothing before stating, “Wait.”

Si-hyuk and the other members pause just before rising from their seats. They turn to Jeongguk questionably, confusion and curiosity evident on their faces.

“What is it?” Hoseok calmly asks.

Jeongguk swallows, “I’ve…already thought about it.”

A tense silence abruptly fills the atmosphere. The other members exchange worried glances before redirecting their attention to Jeongguk.

“And that is…?” Si-hyuk tentatively questions.

“For twenty-three years of my life, I’ve hid and lied about who I am, but I found people who accepted me and loved me.” Jeongguk gestures to the members. “I want the same amount of love and acceptance for my relationship with Jimin.”

Jeongguk knows he sounds selfish; he knows the best thing for BTS would be to break things off with Jimin or to keep him hidden like a secret. But Jimin isn’t a secret. Jimin is joy, love and brightness in Jeongguk’s life. Jimin is a lot like music for Jeongguk—someone he cannot live without.

“I love him.” Jeongguk states. “Now, then, forever.”

Si-hyuk’s eyebrows furrow as he gazes at Jeongguk, “What are you saying, Jeongguk?” He pressures.

“I…” Jeongguk takes a deep breath, gathering all the strength and courage he has left. “I want to go public.”

 

<3

 

Jimin sits on the edge of his bed staring blankly at the wall. Nothing’s on his mind. No matter how hard he tries to think, he can’t think about anything. A few hours have passed since scandal broke or as Jimin likes to put it—when shit hit the fan. His phone hasn’t stopped ringing with calls from classmates, dance students and others who claim to be his “long-time friends.”

He just wants it to stop. He wants everything to drown in silence.

When his phone rings again, Jimin raises it to throw at his wall but stops short when he sees the familiar number on his screen. His heart drops and disgust clogs his throat.  

“Wh-why is he calling…?” He stares at the daunting number as his phone continues to ring and ring and ring. It’s his ex that’s calling, the bastard that nearly made Jimin give up on love. He hasn’t talked to him in years. He hasn’t thought about him since forever ago.

Why is he calling me now? After all this fucking time?

Jimin let’s his phone ring until it goes to voicemail. The line beeps and then he hears his voice:

“Hey…it’s been a while, but I thought I should call since I saw you on the news. Are you okay? I told you something like this would happen.” His ex sighs. “That’s why we broke up, Jimin. You always learn these things the hard way.”

Jimin immediately deletes his number and makes a mental note to change his number. It’s something he needs to do, now that almost everyone has it. But what pisses Jimin off is the audacity his ex has in believing that Jimin still cares about his opinion. Jimin’s reached a place of acceptance. His relationship with his ex was far from healthy, but Jimin genuinely believed what they had was true love. He hasn’t told Jeongguk everything about his previous romantic relationships and wonders if he’ll ever get the chance to or if it’s too late.

“Hey…”

Jimin jumps at Taehyung’s voice and spins around to face the doorway.

Taehyung’s standing there with a water bottle and a bag of chips in hand. “I brought snacks.” He waves them at Jimin with a crooked grin.

Jimin smiles sweetly. “Thanks, Tae.”

Taehyung bounces over and Jimin scoots over to make room for him on the bed. Once they’re settled, Taehyung hooks an arm around Jimin’s shoulders and pulls him close.

“Who called?” Taehyung asks tentatively as though he already knows.

“No one…”

Taehyung glares as he opens a bag of chips. “You can’t lie to me, Jimin.”

Jimin sucks hard on his bottom lip.

“Was it him?”

Jimin doesn’t hesitate to nod.

Taehyung angrily stuffs a handful of chips into his mouth. “Asshole.”

“I’m not…I’m not bothered by it though, I’m more upset by the fact that he still knows my number.” Jimin murmurs. “I don’t care about him anymore…”

Taehyung finishes chewing before he says, “Good.” He leans over so his head rests against Jimin’s shoulder. “I’m proud of you.”

Jimin laughs softly, “I’m proud of myself too.”

Jimin’s been through some shit—toxic relationships and self-doubt—he’s experienced it all. However, he finally has a chance to be happy with someone who makes him happy and wants the best for him. Jimin doesn’t want to lose that.

Sensing Jimin’s shift in attitude, Taehyung switches the subject of the conversation, “Have you heard from Jeongguk yet?”

Jimin shakes his head, “Not yet.”

“Don’t think the worst, Jimin…I know you.”

Jimin shoves a hand through his hair. “I just…you know how I feel, Tae.”

Taehyung does to a certain extent. He’s in love with the Jung Hoseok. If an article were to drop blasting his potential relationship with Hoseok…who knows how he’d react or what Hoseok would do or be forced to do.

“It’s only just started but I already want this shit to end.” Jimin grumbles, shoving his hand into Taehyung’s bag of chips and popping a handful into his mouth.

The remainder of the day progresses slowly like a dance routine Jimin can’t grasp. He eats lunch with Taehyung and they discuss everything that isn’t Jeongguk related. They laugh while watching Netflix and hold each other close. When they sit like this, it reminds Jimin of when they first moved in together. How excited, happy and eager they were to make the apartment their own. After meeting Jeongguk, Jimin wonders how long he and Taehyung will remain like this. They’ve often thought about moving in together and developing a domestic lifestyle. Now he wonders if that’ll ever happen.

The ringing of Jimin’s phone interrupts the silence. Taehyung flashes Jimin a reassuring smile before slipping to the bathroom, giving Jimin space when he realizes it’s Jeongguk who’s calling.

Jimin gathers himself before answering, “Hey...”

“Jimin,” Jeongguk exhales in relief. “I—I wanted to call you sooner, but—”

“You don’t need to explain,” Jimin says softly. “I understand.”

After a moment, Jeongguk begins to speak, “We…had a meeting,”

Jimin curls his legs beneath himself, a posture he takes when he’s trying to comfort himself or disappear.

“I said…” Jeongguk takes another deep breath. “I said I wanted to go public with our relationship.”

Jimin’s heart stops for a second and the world closes in around him. Go…public. He clutches the front of his shirt and takes several deep breaths to calm himself.

“Jimin?”

“S-sorry, uhm.” Jimin releases a shaky breath.

“Angel?” Concern seeps into Jeongguk’s voice and he immediately regrets having said those words. “I’m sorry, I wanted to tell you in person, but the company advised that we don’t see each other this week.”

Jeongguk sounds slightly panicked, worried by the fact that he’s not beside Jimin. I should be with him. We should be together. He gnaws anxiously on his bottom lip while tightly gripping his phone.

“Jeongguk…I need a moment.” Jimin cards his fingers through his hair. “Give me a moment, baby.”

“Okay…”

Jimin turns his phone onto speaker before placing it on the sofa arm. He rises to his feet and begins pacing with his arms crossed. Pacing always helps when he needs to gather his thoughts. Usually Taehyung would talk him through the crises in his life, comforting and reassuring him, but Jimin knows this is something he needs to confront on his own.

On Jeongguk’s end, he can hear Jimin’s feet shuffling back and forth and his heart aches because he wants to be with him. He recalls the numerous times he couldn’t be there for Jimin because of his schedule. How Jimin would call with worries about his future and how Jeongguk would have to excuse himself to record something for BTS’ album. He vividly remembers the texts he’d receive from Taehyung: ‘I’m here, don’t worry. I’ll take care of him.’ But Jeongguk wanted to be there for Jimin as his boyfriend and partner. Jeongguk yearned to be beside him.

“Jimin,” Jeongguk tentatively calls.

“Give me a second, I’m trying…” Jimin pauses to take a breath. “I’m trying not to freak out.”

Jeongguk can hear it in his voice, the anxiety creeping into his tone. “I’m here.” Jeongguk says softly and he uses the tone he uses in the early mornings when Jimin’s asleep in his arms. The tone solely for Jimin’s ears.

Jimin stills.

“I’ll always be here, angel.” Jeongguk assures.

Jimin falls into the couch with a loud thump and hastily replies, “I’m scared.”

Jeongguk’s heart aches, “Me too. I’m fucking terrified.” He laughs shakily and hopes that Jimin’s smiling now.

After a pause that feels like forever, Jimin whispers, “I love my life as it is.” His voice sounds so small; vulnerable and fragile.

Jeongguk’s heart sinks, but he can’t say he wasn’t expecting this.

“I love the quiet mornings and late nights.” Jimin rambles. “I love teaching at the dance studio, going to cafes to study for an exam and above all, I love my privacy.”

All these things are things Jeongguk loves to see Jimin doing because they’re things that Jimin loves. And Jeongguk loves everything about him. Who am I take that from him because of my selfishness?

“I love going on walks with Tae and complaining about the weather, but…” Jimin closes his eyes and memories with Jeongguk dance behind his lids. “I love you more.”

Jeongguk’s heart skips a beat and it feels like he might cry.

“I love you so much, Jeongguk and going public scares the shit out of me, but…” Jimin opens his eyes, staring blankly up at the ceiling. “If I’m with you…I…I know I’ll be fine.”

Jeongguk’s rendered speechless as his emotions overwhelm him. They well up in his throat and fill his stomach with butterflies.

“We’ll be fine together.” Jimin says this part more to himself, thinking about what this means for his life and ultimately how it’ll effect Jeongguk’s career. “I just,” he continues.

Sensing the hesitation in his voice, Jeongguk tenderly urges him on. “Go on.”

“I just hate that you were given this ultimatum—me or your career.” Jimin mumbles.

“There was never a choice for me, Jimin.” Jeongguk doesn’t hesitate to respond. “It’s possible for me to have both; idols have done so before.”

“But you’re—we’re different, Jeongguk.” Jimin’s eyebrows furrow.

“Because we’re both men?”

Jimin sighs, “And because the entire world is looking at you and everything you do, and I know you care even if you put up a front of nonchalance. I know you.”

Jeongguk doesn’t try to fight Jimin’s words because he knows, Jimin knows him. Two years together can do that to a person—a relationship. Jimin knows Jeongguk’s stressors, how he handles criticism and mistakes. Jimin understands him the best.

“It’s…going to be difficult.” Jeongguk carefully replies. “I’m aware of that.”

“What are we going to do, Jeongguk? What happens tomorrow?”

“Tomorrow…” Jeongguk echoes. “I’ll call again.”

“You better.” Jimin teases.

Jeongguk smiles, “I really want to hug you right now and look you in the eyes and thank you for walking into the fire with me.” he gushes.

He knows Jimin’s decision was not the easiest one for him to make given the circumstances and how quickly his information and YouTube account were discovered. There are no words to express Jeongguk’s appreciation and love.

“Don’t get your hopes up, I may change my mind tomorrow.” Jimin replies. “Or the day after.”

“I’ll wait.” Jeongguk says easily. “Doesn’t matter how long. I’ll wait for you.”

Jimin can’t help the smile that stretches his lips.

“I love you, Jimin and I want to spend the rest of my life loving you.”

“You sound so cheesy.” Jimin snorts.

Jeongguk uses a hand to cup one of his ears, “I know, my ears are burning.”

“Your ears turn red when you speak from the heart.” Jimin murmurs. “It’s cute.”

Jeongguk chuckles, “Which explains why my ears are always on fire when I’m with you.”

“Okay, chill out, I can only handle so much cheesiness in one day.” Jimin jokingly warns.

They laugh together. Comfortable and warm and it’s a lot like the hug Jeongguk would’ve given Jimin.

Tomorrow comes and new doubts arrive with it. Jimin spent the night awake, contemplating if he made the right decision. He wondered if the little arguments with Jeongguk over the years were worth it.

After all those meaningless fights, you finally made up your mind.

He’s seated on the floor in the dance studio, legs stretched out in front of him. He’s here earlier than when he’s scheduled to be because it helps him think when he’s sitting in the silence. On his mind are thoughts of his relationship with Jeongguk. Maybe none of this would’ve happened if he had agreed to go public sooner.

Jimin sighs as he bends forward to touch his toes and a memory resurfaces, one that feels like it happened ages ago.

Jimin presses his palms to Jeongguk’s back, forcing his boyfriend to bend forward.

“You’re so stiff, my god.” Jimin clicks his tongue at Jeongguk. “Too busy building up your body mass that you’ve forgotten the most important part.”

Jeongguk purses his lips and decides not to say anything because Jimin’s right. He’s been focused on bulking up lately because of the comeback and maybe because of the one-time Jimin said another idol had a nice body.

Jeongguk gets a little jealous when it comes to Jimin.

“It’s because of the comeback, huh?” Jimin’s tone softens and he stops to hug Jeongguk from behind. “Please remember to take care of yourself, baby.”

Jeongguk melts. “I will.”

“You know there’s only one of you in the world.” Jimin continues in that same soft tone.

“I know.” Jeongguk turns around to face Jimin and he smiles. “You love me a lot, don’t you?”

Jimin makes a face. “Of course, I do, what kind of question is that?”

Jeongguk laughs before stealing a kiss. He kisses Jimin once, twice and a third time until Jimin nudges him away.

“We’re stretching today, not making out.” Jimin points a warning finger at Jeongguk. “Don’t test me.”

“Okay, okay, fine.” Jeongguk returns to stretching, but turns to Jimin one last time. “Can we make out later?”

Jimin rolls his eyes, mumbling a yes as he grips the back of Jeongguk’s head, turning his face away.

Jimin smiles to himself as he thinks back to that day and the many days he’s shared with Jeongguk. They were happy yet anxious, in love yet worried about every move they made. Their love was constantly shrouded in the shadows of discovery.

The door to the studio suddenly creaks open and Taemin steps inside, duffle bag in hand. His eyes widen when they land on Jimin. “Oh! You’re here early.”

Jimin jumps to his feet, “Yeah…” he greets Taemin with a small smile.

“You look like a ghost sitting in the dark.” Taemin flicks on the light, dosing the studio in bright white.

Jimin laughs soullessly. “It didn’t bother me.” I’m used to being in the dark.

Taemin pauses to stare at Jimin. He crosses his arms and his eyebrows furrow. “You okay?”

Jimin grimaces, looking away from Taemin’s penetrative gaze.

“You don’t have to tell me, but…I’m sorry that happened to you.” Taemin murmurs. “Having your personal life blasted like that? Must feel like shit—like there’s nothing you can do.”

Jimin stares down at the floor and the helplessness he was feeling last night wraps around him like a cold embrace from his ex. He shivers and wonders how easy it’d be to run away, to leave all this behind and start anew. But…Jeongguk. His sweet, goofy and kind—Jeongguk. He doesn’t want to leave him behind.

“There…is something I can do.” Jimin says softly and a flutter builds in his chest.

Taemin looks towards him, eyebrows raised inquiringly. “And what might that be?”

“Embrace it. Stop running away.” Jimin says as he gathers his coat.

Taemin gawks back at him, watching as Jimin fumbles for his belongings.

“I’m sorry but I won’t be able to teach today.” Jimin apologizes before rushing out the front door.

The sun shines bright in the sky—hopeful—and Jimin realizes summer has never felt so sweet. His heart races with adrenaline as he runs down the sidewalk towards his car.

 

<3

 

The studio that’s usually bursting with energy and brightness, feels empty as Jeongguk sits on a bench against the wall. He has his elbows on his knees and his face in his hands. He doesn’t want to look up, practice or do anything. All he wants to do is go see Jimin, hug him tightly and reassure him that everything will be alright.

Footsteps shuffle into the studio, but Jeongguk doesn’t bother to look up. He figures it’s their manager waltzing inside to tell him to practice and he will…eventually.

“Jeongguk?” But instead of hearing his manager, it’s Hoseok’s voice that calls out to him.

“Hyung?”

“Hey…” Hoseok plops down beside him and places a comforting hand to his shoulder. “This might be a stupid question to ask, but as someone who cares about you, I’m obligated to do so.”

This statement causes the corners of Jeongguk’s lips to slightly quirk up, “Ask away.”

“How are you? Have you spoken to Jimin at all?”

“I’m okay, I guess. It’s not like I didn’t want this. Maybe another way, but eventually I wanted to come out.” Jeongguk replies. “I know Jimin wanted this to happen differently and I hate that it happened this way.”

Hoseok squeezes his shoulder.

“I spoke to him yesterday after the meeting.” Jeongguk closes his eyes as he recalls Jimin’s voice. “He sounded so scared, hyung.”

“Jeongguk,”

“It almost felt as if he was terrified of me.”

“You know that’s not the case.”

Jeongguk opens his eyes with a heavy breath, “I know…I know.”

Hoseok can’t help but think about his relationship with Taehyung; if they’ll get to this point or end it before it has a chance to begin. Hoseok really likes him and he’s beginning to see Taehyung as the special someone he’s mentioned to his fans.

“I want be special to someone.”

That someone is Taehyung.

The door to the studio swings open again and Namjoon bursts inside with a panicked look on his face. Hoseok and Jeongguk immediately jump to their feet.

“Ji—Jimin,” Namjoon huffs.

Jeongguk breaks away from Hoseok and rushes up to Namjoon. “What? What is it?” Searching Namjoon’s eyes, Jeongguk doesn’t like what he sees. Did something happen to Jimin? Is he okay?

“He’s here.” Namjoon exhales.

Jeongguk’s eyes widen and his heart flips.

“In the lobby,” Namjoon continues breathlessly. “I don’t know, Jeongguk. I don’t know why he’s here. You sho—”

But Jeongguk’s already out the door. He runs down the hall and skips the elevator, heading straight for the stairs. He takes them two at a time and his heart beats erratically with each step he takes. He can’t help but think that maybe Jimin’s here to end things. He’s never showed up at the office like this—he was always hesitant in showing up at any of Jeongguk’s workplaces.

“It’s too risky.”

“I shouldn’t.”

“I’m sorry, baby, but I can’t do that.”

Jeongguk bursts through the stairwell doors, startling a few employees, but he pays them no mind as he turns down the hall.

Is this the end for us?

Jeongguk slows down to a brisk walk and clenches his fists at his sides. He breezes down the hall which seems like an endless nightmare before finally reaching the lobby.

It can’t be…please.

Jeongguk’s head swivels from left to right, searching for Jimin until finally…finally he finds him. Jimin’s sitting with his back to Jeongguk, head down and hands clenched together. Jeongguk takes a shaky step towards him and his heart thrums loudly in his ears. It feels like forever until he reaches Jimin. He lightly touches him on the shoulder and Jimin spins around with wide eyes.

“Hey,” Jeongguk timidly greets.

Jimin jumps to his feet and hesitates before stepping towards Jeongguk. “Hey…”

An awkward silence falls between them and Jeongguk notices how Jimin’s nervously chewing at his bottom lip.

“Is…is something wrong?” Jeongguk asks.

Jimin shakes his head and says, “I was thinking.”

“Okay,” Jeongguk searches his eyes.

“I was thinking about us—you—our future and your fans. I was thinking so much.”

Jeongguk struggles to follow Jimin’s train of thought, his heart racing as he watches Jimin.

“I want to do this with you.” Jimin finalizes.

Jeongguk blinks because he isn’t following—he doesn’t understand.

“I want to,” Jimin takes a deep breath and shakes the nerves out of his hands. “I want to stop running.”

It clicks. The puzzle pieces fall into place and Jeongguk’s eyes fill with tears because there’s too many emotions pulsing through his body. Those words paired with Jimin’s earnest eyes, cause Jeongguk to silently wrap his arms around Jimin and pull him into a hug. He doesn’t know what to say—is bad at expressing himself when he’s shocked, so he hugs Jimin even tighter.

Jimin returns the embrace, “Baby?”

“Okay,” Jeongguk’s voice is shaking when he speaks. “Let’s stop running.”

They stand in the lobby with their arms wrapped around each other. Neither of them want to let go. The running has finally ended, but a new beginning awaits them. Jeongguk doesn’t know what that’s going to look like, but imagines it’ll be everything he’s wanted if Jimin’s there.

Once their emotions have settled and their heartbeats return to normal, they separate to look at each other. Jimin’s eyes are wet and Jeongguk’s cheeks are damp.

Jimin laughs, using his shirt sleeve to wipe at Jeongguk’s face. “Oh, Jeongguk.” he sighs sweetly.

Jeongguk laughs, shoulders bobbing up and eyes closing. “Sorry, they just started rolling and—”

“I know,” Jimin says softly. “Baby, I know.”

Namjoon and Hoseok come rushing out of the elevator, followed by Seokjin and Yoongi who are equally as confused as them. They stumble to a stop in front of Jeongguk and Jimin and look confusedly between the two.

“Jeongguk, what…” Namjoon begins, struggling to catch his breath.

As if he were expecting them, Jimin bows deeply. “I’m sorry.”

Namjoon swallows and Hoseok awkwardly places a hand to his nape. Seokjin’s busy assuring the staff and others in the lobby that things are alright. He gestures for them to leave and they slowly back away.

“Why’re you apologizing?” Yoongi’s low voice cuts the tension. “You have nothing to apologize for.”

Jimin lifts his head and gawks back at him.

“It’s not your fault. None of this is your fault.” Yoongi continues in his same easy-going yet wise tone.

His words and the way he says them make it seem like everything will be alright.

“We should meet upstairs where it’s more private.” Namjoon advises, already ushering them towards the elevator.

“Actually,” Jimin begin.

They all halt in front the elevator and immediately whip around to peer at Jimin.

He nervously clutches his hands behind his back. “I was hoping I could speak to Bang PD?”

Jeongguk blinks and Seokjin does a double take. If there were a car, Hoseok’s pretty sure he would ask the driver to run him over. Too much is happening already and it hasn’t even been a week. He can only hope for the best for Jimin and Jeongguk.

“You…you want to speak to Bang?” Namjoon chokes.

Jimin nods.

“Like…now?”

“I can’t?” Jimin asks.

Namjoon shakes his head and signals to Seokjin to help him out. Together they explain that he’s in a meeting and will be busy all day, but Jimin needs to meet him now before he loses confidence.

“Why do you want to meet him?” Seokjin asks.

“Jeongguk and I are ready to go public, but it’s not something we can decide on our own.” Jimin calmly explains.

No words are needed because they all understand.

BTS. Army and Jeongguk’s entire life as an idol. It’s not as easy as posting a photo to Twitter or Instagram and being done with it. They need to be careful, considerate and patient, but Jeongguk’s tired of waiting around.

“I’ll talk to him.” Jeongguk says. “I planned on doing so anyways. I’ll let him know Jimin’s decision and we’ll go from there.”

“Sounds easy enough.” Hoseok comments lightly, eyes flicking between them.

Namjoon nods slowly, eyebrows knit as he thinks about the numerous outcomes. After a moment of contemplation, he replies, “Alright…”

Jeongguk lights up.

“Once you talk to him, he’ll probably call us back in for another meeting.” Namjoon reasons. “We’re in this together.”

Together.

Seokjin suddenly turns to Hoseok, “Don’t tell us we’re going to have to do this again with you and Taehyung.”

Hoseok smiles sheepishly, but he doesn’t know how to respond to that given his and Taehyung’s ambiguous relationship. They haven’t talked in a while; Hoseok wants to see him and confess. Maybe? Well, maybe not just yet.

The next day, Jimin waits for Jeongguk’s call. He promised to call after the meeting, so Jimin’s seated in the living room with his phone beside him. Taehyung’s leaning by his feet; eyes all round as he waits with Jimin. The clock ticks in the distance and Jimin can’t seem to look away from it.

“I feel like vomiting.” Jimin deadpans.

“If you do, aim for the table please.” Taehyung replies.

Jimin nudges him with his foot, “Nah, I’ll aim for your head. Hope Hoseok likes your new hairstyle.”

“Evil.”

Taehyung and Jimin share a laugh and once their giggles tapper off, silence once again fills the room. Dread bubbles in Jimin’s chest, along with another emotion he can’t quite place. He shifts on the couch and rises and sits several times, until his phone finally rings.

Jimin fumbles for it and Taehyung jumps to his feet. Jimin takes a deep breath before answering, willing his heart to calm down. The line clicks and Jeongguk answers.

“Jimin?”

“H-hey…” Jimin swallows. “How’d it go?”

“Well. It went well.” A pause and then he says, “We’re going to do it our way.”

Jimin blinks as confusion twists his features, “Our way? What if our way is wrong?” he asks. “What if we fuck up, Jeongguk?”

Jeongguk’s response is immediate, “Trust us.”

Jimin relaxes a bit as he listens to the soothing lull of Jeongguk’s voice.

“Trust what we’ve been through. We can do this.”

After speaking with various parts of management, the company decided that it’d be best to release a press release stating that Jimin and Jeongguk are together, but to leave Jimin’s name out of it. They don’t want to further involve him, but at this point, it’s too late. He’s known by millions and even fans of his YouTube channel are saying that “Bighit would do better to blatantly explain everything.”

So, here they are now, deciding to do it their way.

“I suggested we do a stream on your YouTube channel.” Jeongguk clarifies. “He said we can go live whenever we choose to.”

“You’re insane for this.”

Jeongguk’s laughter crackles to life on the other end, “Maybe but I’m ready to do this with you.”

I’ve always been ready.

 

<3

 

Jimin sits in front of his camera and he fiddles with the set-up. He tilts it upward, then downwards before settling on a single angle. He looks at himself on his laptop screen and adjusts his hair.

“You look fine,” Jeongguk says from the doorway. “gorgeous as always.”

Jimin makes a face, “I’m so nervous.”

“I’ll be right here with you.”

“We should’ve just done the press release.” Jimin mutters. “Would’ve been way easier.”

Jeongguk laughs lightly, walking over and sitting beside Jimin on the bed. He slides an arm around Jimin’s shoulders and pulls him close. “We’ll be okay.”

In the week leading up to this stream, Jimin met numerous times with the other members of BTS, checking and double-checking that this would be okay. They encouraged him to schedule it and said they would be rooting for them. Jimin wonders if they’re watching.

He melts into Jeongguk’s touch and allows himself to be held for a moment before urging Jeongguk away. “I need to do this quickly before chickening out.”

Jeongguk hurries out of the camera frame and watches Jimin from the doorway.

“When it’s time for you to join, I’ll just signal, I guess.” Jimin flashes Jeongguk a thin smile.

“Gotcha.”

Jimin doesn’t waste anymore time and presses GO LIVE. Gradually, people join and the chat comes to life with emojis and words Jimin chooses not to read. He doesn’t want to know what’s being said about him, he just wants to do this and set himself free. He clenches and unclenches his fists and gazes into the camera.

“I don’t know how to begin this. I don’t know what to say or how to say it, but I’m sure you all saw the articles speculating my relationship with Jeongguk.” Jimin’s voice shakes a bit as he speaks, but he calms himself before continuing. “So many words were tossed around: hook-up, best-friend, mistake, another member’s whatever. A lot of people refrained from saying boyfriend. I wondered why and then I realized that the idea of Jeongguk being gay, scared and freaked out a lot of people.”

Jeongguk shifts against the doorframe, arms wrapped tightly around his torso.

“Well, I’m here to talk about that. To talk about everything.” Jimin adds. “Jeongguk and I are dating. We’ve been dating Jeongguk for two years now, going on three.” He smiles to himself because it makes him happy to picture a future with Jeongguk. “We fought a lot about going public or continuing to meet in secret, but…here we are.” He gestures widely with his arms.

Comments fly through the chat and Jimin can no longer ignore them as they scream out at him.

‘He’s lying!!!’

‘Attention seeker’

‘what song is this?’

‘are u going to stop uploading videos?’

‘WHERE’S JUNGKOOK YOU LIAR?!? WE NEED TO GET OUR OPPA AWAY FROM YOU.’

‘disgusting’

Jimin swallows, glances at Jeongguk who smiles back at him and Jimin pushes on, “The company offered to release a statement, but we chose to do it this way because it’s how it all began.”

That fateful livestream and Jeongguk’s boldness.

“I ugh,” Jimin rubs his palms along his thighs. “I haven’t been alone throughout all this. While being scared and uncertain, a certain someone has been beside me.”

Catching his cue, Jeongguk pushes off the doorframe and settles beside Jimin. He doesn’t hesitate to slide his arm around Jimin’s shoulders and the chat goes crazy. Jimin’s never seen words blur by so fast before. The live viewers tick up into the millions, but Jimin looks away before he decides this was all a bad idea.

“Hey,” Jeongguk does a small wave at the camera. “I’ll try not to be so awkward since I’m with my boyfriend.”

The word drops so easily and naturally from his lips. Saying it, doesn’t even faze Jeongguk.

“I’ve been wanting to say that for forever.” Jeongguk laughs airily. “Sounds nice, right? My boyfriend.”

Jimin doesn’t know what to say as he’s swept away by Jeongguk’s actions, “Jeongguk….”

“Jimin is my boyfriend.” He says in a more serious tone. “Nothing’s going to change that.”

It’s like his words are tinged with a warning: Know your boundaries. Respect our space and our privacy.

“I’m not sure what happens after this, I might lose a lot of you in the process, but…” Jeongguk smiles sadly at the camera. “That’s how it is sometimes and I’m not alone. Jimin has me and I have him.”

Jimin places his hand over Jeongguk’s hand on his shoulder.

“Also,” Jeongguk leans towards the camera like he’s divulging a secret. He even drops his voice to a whisper. “I’ve been planning to release something.”

“Why’re you whispering like that?”

“Secret.” Jeongguk leans back and kisses Jimin’s forehead. “You’ll see later.”

Jimin squints, “What is it?”

“I’ll give you a hint,” Jeongguk kisses Jimin’s nose this time. “It has something to do with all those videos I recorded of you.”

Jimin’s eyes bug, but before he has a chance to say anything, Jeongguk’s addressing the viewers again.

“I think we should wrap it up here.” Jeongguk flashes Jimin a tender look. “Who knows? Maybe we’ll go live in the future.”

Jimin sternly shakes his head and Jeongguk laughs. They don’t bother to read the comments as they continuously fly through on the screen. A few words jump out at Jeongguk: unstanning, disgusting, leave the group, disband, break up. They send chills down his spine, but he tightens his grip on Jimin, grounding himself.

“I guess we’ll end it then.” Jimin murmurs. “Thanks for watching?” he smiles nervously, leaning forward to click away at his laptop. He stares into the camera one last time before clicking END STREAM. Silence envelopes the room and they turn slowly to look at each other.

“Holy shit,” Jungkook exhales in shock.

“Holy shit.” Jimin echoes.

And in unison they say, “Holy fucking shit.”

Jimin slams his laptop shut and places a hand to his chest. “My heart's racing like crazy. I could die. Oh my god.” He takes another breath before gasping out, “Are we seriously public?”

Jungkook nods with a warm smile, “Yep.”

“Hooooly shit.” Jimin whispers. “I'm going to die.”

“No, you're not.”

“Your fans are going to murder me. All twenty-seven million of them."

“Jimin,”

“Like...everyone has a crush on you.” Jimin blubbers. “They want to marry you. Have your kids. Holy fuck.”

“Angel...”

“Seriously though, Jeongguk, three million people were watching that stream.”

With a sigh, Jeongguk pulls Jimin close and kisses him on the lips. “They're not going to murder you.” He says tenderly, remaining close to Jimin. “They’d have to get through me first.”

“Pretty sure you wouldn’t make it because it’s you versus three million peo—”

“Hush, my angel and let me have my moment, please.” Jeongguk interrupts with a grin.

Jimin snorts, peering at Jeongguk with a goofy smile and he presses their lips together. They kiss deeply like when they first met two years ago and Jeongguk gently pushes Jimin onto his back. Jimin falls softly against the mattress and stares up at Jeongguk with slightly hooded eyes. Jeongguk leans in and kisses him again, their tongues entangle and Jimin moans softly.

“I’m so happy,” Jeongguk whispers against Jimin’s lips. “my heart's happy, but so is my dick.” He cracks.

Jimin gives him a half-hearted glare as he punches him in the chest. “Gross. Get off me.” He grumbles.

“I’m serious, can I…” Jeongguk leans down and whispers his wishes into Jimin’s ears, detailing how badly he’s missed holding him like this.

Jimin blushes, but he doesn’t fight the hand snaking up his shirt or Jeongguk’s warm lips against his neck. He wants this, he’s always wanted this.

His Golden Maknae.

His Jeon Jeongguk and Jungkook, and the many praises he’ll never get tired of hearing.

“I love you.” Jimin murmurs as he wraps his arms around Jeongguk’s broad shoulders.

Jeongguk leans back, gazing warmly at Jimin and his eyes speak before he does, “I love you too.” They say.  

What happens tomorrow and the many days after will be hard, but they'll get through it.

Who knows, maybe years from now they'll go live again to announce their engagement.

At least that's what Jeongguk hopes; he's already making plans for it. 

 

-FIN-