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Taehyung loves his job, even if it means finishing at almost 8 PM from Monday to Friday. As someone who has loved being in the water since he was a kid himself, becoming a swimming instructor at the municipal pool is something that he finds rewarding. He loves kids, he loves the pool. It might not have been his dream job, but he’s happy where he is now.

Taking the late evening shift means that after his day of work he has to stay behind and tidy up, not leaving until way past eight. By the time he makes it home it's closer to nine, but he genuinely doesn’t mind. He leaves his work with wet hair and wrapped up in a big hoodie with the logo of the pool stamped on the back. He showered before leaving, and now he can’t wait to get home, cook himself some late dinner and relax. Taking the evening shift at work has made him turn into a bit of an owl, but even if he’s not sleepy yet, he’s tired; he needs a long evening sitting on his sofa doing absolutely nothing. 

He’s fishing in his pocket for his keys, grabbing them in his hand when he hears something. Half empty parking lots where you can hear strange noises are never the most reassuring thing, which causes Taehyung to feel his heart in his throat as soon as he hears it. Taehyung speeds up his steps, walking to his car, but then he sees him, sitting behind a van. A man, who groans as he sits naked on the concrete. Taehyung frowns.

Taehyung stops in his tracks there, biting down on his bottom lip as he watches the stranger. He's running a hand through his long, dark wavy hair, sitting cross-legged. Another groan leaves his mouth, and Taehyung in all honesty doesn’t know what to do. The man doesn’t look… well, in a good state. Taehyung would feel a bit bad leaving him here alone. The least he can do is call someone, be it an ambulance or the cops.

“Are you okay?” he asks.

As soon as he says that, the man’s head snaps back up to look at him. His eyes seem wide, but there isn’t much that Taehyung can see in the dark. He takes a tentative step forward, half expecting the stranger to flinch, but he doesn’t. Taehyung takes another step closer, now able to see him properly.

“Oh—hey,” the guy says, immediately getting to his feet. Yep, very naked indeed. Taehyung is definitely not going to look. “I’m fine! Thanks for the concern, young man. I appreciate it.”

“Okay, that’s… that’s dope,” Taehyung replies, one of his hands going to scratch the side of his head. He isn’t quite sure of what to say now, feeling a bit awkward. “You shouldn’t be naked around here. There are kids around, you know. And it’s illegal.”

The man tilts his head, his brown eyes looking at Taehyung fixedly. “I think I might need some help in that department, since I don’t really have any clothes with me as of right now,” the man replies. Taehyung frowns. He’s not quite sure of how this man could make it here, to the middle of Seoul, without any clothes on. “Would you mind taking me to your home, perhaps?”

Taehyung’s mouth falls open, a choked out and disbelieving noise coming out. It’s more a strangled chuckle than anything else, really. “To my home?” Taehyung repeats, unable to believe what he’s just heard. The man doesn’t seem to be thinking in the slightest, which makes Taehyung scoff. “I’m sorry, but I don’t invite strangers into my house. Much less naked strangers. I can call someone who might take you to your own place, or even the police, but…”

“Please,” the guy says, staring into Taehyung’s eyes. Taehyung is about to open his mouth to reply that no way in hell, but something about the stranger’s stare makes him stop right there, listening. “I promise I won’t be a nuisance or bother you in any way. I just urgently need a place to stay tonight, as well as some clothes. Like you pointed out, I can’t walk around like this.”

Taehyung wants to say no, since like he said before, he wouldn’t let a stranger in his house. It’s dangerous, especially in cities as big as Seoul and especially with people as dodgy as this one. He knows all of this, he’s thinking about it. For that reason, it doesn’t make sense to him when he says, “Of course you can. I’ll give you a place to stay tonight.” As soon as he processes what he’s just said, he frowns. The stranger smiles at him, both terribly charming and devious. He can’t stop himself from talking, adding, “You can take my hoodie to cover yourself up.”

“Well, that’s very kind,” the guy says, at the same time Taehyung drops the bag to his side and starts to take the piece of clothing off. What the fuck? Part of him wants to stop himself from moving but he can’t. It’s like he’s lost control over his body and his brain, and the rational voice in him is being completely ignored and disregarded by… well, every other part of him. “Do you live far, young man?”

“Just fifteen minutes away. And the name’s Taehyung,” he adds, introducing himself. The guy hums, at the same time that he takes the hoodie from Taehyung.

“You may call me Jeongguk,” the guy replies, tying the hoodie around his body. Much to Taehyung’s relief, he covers his front with it. “Shall we get going, then?”

Taehyung doesn’t understand why he starts moving to his car, with the man trailing behind. He doesn’t understand why he feels overwhelming calmness, why he doesn’t feel nervous with a weird, naked man in his car with him. Taehyung starts the engine and starts driving away from the parking lot, waving good night to a coworker that he encounters on the way out.

While he drives, Taehyung steals a glance at the guy sitting next to him, who looks distractedly out of the window. What the fuck has he just gotten himself into?

 

 

“You can sleep on the couch. I’ll give you a blanket but it’s so warm that I doubt you’re gonna need it,” Taehyung starts telling Jeongguk, as he looks around Taehyung’s place with some sort of fascination Taehyung doesn’t quite understand. There’s nothing remotely interesting about the apartment he rents—one kitchen joint to the living area, one bedroom, one bathroom. Nothing more. “Let me go get some pajamas so you can—”

“This place is rather small, isn’t it?” Jeongguk interrupts.

Taehyung’s lips part, feeling his face warm up. Part of him wants to be mad, because what the fuck? But the rest of him feels embarrassed and even a bit humiliated, so he’s really at a loss for words, not knowing what to say.

“I wonder if you could do much better with the salary of a kids swimming instructor,” Taehyung mumbles, crossing his arms over his chest. He’s rather annoyed right now.

“No need to get angry—I just stated a fact, it is small,” Jeongguk replies, turning around to give Taehyung a plain look. What the hell is this dude’s deal? “It has a charm to it. I’ve never been anywhere like this.”

Taehyung scoffs because that’s just his luck. Of course he had to pick up a stupid rich kid who’s never seen an apartment as small as his. And of course, some stupidly soft part of him couldn’t just bring himself to kick the guy out or call the police on him, as he should have. Taehyung seriously has to wonder what’s wrong with him.

“Look—the bathroom’s just there. You can go wash up, and I’ll leave some clothes by the door for you, okay?” he instructs, using one hand on the small of the guy’s back to push him in the direction of the restroom. “I’ll have the couch ready and cook dinner while you do that. So please…”

“Alright, alright. I’ll wash up now,” Jeongguk agrees, as he moves to enter the bathroom. “I won’t be long.”

“Take as long as you want! It’s no bother,” Taehyung tells him as he starts pushing him inside the bathroom. The truth is that he needs a damn break from Jeongguk’s company to rearrange his thoughts on the situation. Because what the fuck. “Have a nice shower!”

With that, and without waiting for a reply from the other, Taehyung closes the door and walks away to his bedroom, refuging himself there. Taehyung closes his eyes, resting his back against the door as he tries to figure out what the hell he’s doing, and most importantly, why. He’s so confused by this whole thing and why he’s acting like this, so he guesses there’s only one person that he can talk to. The only person that can understand Taehyung and his motives better than Taehyung himself—Park Jimin.

To: Jiminie – 21:22

Jimin, i’ve done something very stupid

Help

I think I brought home a freak

 

 

Taehyung wakes up after one of the weirdest nights of his life when he hears the doorbell of his apartment go off. He frowns because upon looking to the bedside table on his right he sees it’s nine in the morning and therefore too late for anyone to come visit him. But then, after a second of hard thinking, he remembers.

It was while he and Jeongguk were having dinner that Jimin finally replied. Taehyung, who was extremely weirded out by Jeongguk’s excitement to eat instant ramen, replied to Jimin’s text as soon as it arrived. It took a lot of convincing from his end to make Jimin believe that he wasn’t talking about a weird hookup he brought home, and just as much of him insisting to keep Jimin from coming to the apartment to check Jeongguk out for himself. Despite being bewildered by this guy, Taehyung wasn’t scared. He didn’t feel unsafe.

Jimin agreed not to come at night, but he said he would definitely drop by in the morning, and Taehyung couldn’t make him change his mind about that. It must be Jimin who’s pressing the doorbell now, so Taehyung forces himself out of bed and, still sleepy and rubbing his eyes, makes his way to the front door.

On his way there he walks through the living room, where he finds a deeply asleep Jeongguk. It’s probably for the best that he hasn’t woken up yet, so Taehyung finds himself feeling glad about his seemingly deep slumber.

When Taehyung gets to the door and opens it, he indeed finds Jimin on the other side. Before he has the time to greet him or say anything—he’s still a little slow—Jimin barges in, squeezing himself past Taehyung’s body and the door frame.

“Where’s the creep?” he asks, looking around himself. His eyes land on the couch then, taking one step closer. “Is that him?”

Taehyung closes the door quietly then, shushing Jimin. “Don’t talk too loud! If he’s still asleep he can’t give me a headache,” Taehyung says, which makes Jimin laugh lightly. “That’s him, yeah. Come to the bedroom so we can talk.”

“He’s kinda cute,” Jimin comments as he starts walking behind him. “Handsome, even.”

“Oh my god—don’t say that, please,” Taehyung tells him, entering his bedroom and sitting on the edge of the bed. Jimin, after clicking the door shut behind him, does the same. “He’s not cute. He’s so weird, Jimin.”

Taehyung hasn’t let himself look at Jeongguk like that, really. It’s undeniable that he’s attractive, both his face and his naked body that Taehyung saw last night, but Taehyung’s mind isn’t going there. Nope, not at all.

“What’s weird? You’ve been saying that since last night but wouldn’t tell me anything,” Jimin says, getting himself a bit more comfortable on the bed. “Oh! Does he have any weird kinks?”

“No! I told you it’s not like that. It’s not sexual, he isn’t a hookup,” Taehyung repeats, Jimin raising an eyebrow at him. “I found him at the parking lot yesterday when I came out from work. He was naked, Jimin. Groaning in the middle of the parking lot. And when I asked if he was okay or needed me to call someone, he just asked if he could stay at my place.”

“What. The. Fuck. What the actual fuck, Taehyung,” Jimin says, giving him a disbelieving look. God, Taehyung can’t believe himself, either. “What… how in the hell did you say yes? Are you out of your mind?”

“I—I don’t know! I knew it was dangerous, but like… for some reason, I couldn’t say no? Like, it didn’t feel like I could control myself? It sounds ridiculous, I know,” Taehyung explains, failing at voicing how he felt last night.

“You’re way too good,” Jimin accuses. Taehyung sighs, because it’s not like he said he could stay out of the kindness of his heart. It’s almost as if he lost control of himself, not because he was too good. “Did you ask him what was up last night?”

“I didn’t feel up for it,” Taehyung replies. Jimin, once again, looks at him incredulously. “I didn’t have the energy to deal with him for longer than that, Jimin. There’s just… something about the way he talks and acts. He seems so foreign? Like a different breed entirely.”

“Well, he looks very human to me,” Jimin says. Taehyung sighs. “Let’s wake him up.”

“Jimin, no—” Taehyung starts, standing up right after Jimin does.

“Taehyung, yes,” Jimin says, pulling the door open. “We’re gonna ask him what the fuck he was doing naked in a parking lot last night, and if there’s something remotely unconvincing about what he says, we’re going to throw him out. What if he’s dangerous?”

“If he were dangerous you wouldn’t be talking to me right now,” Taehyung says. Jimin’s lips part, but they close without saying anything when he realizes Taehyung has a point. “I just think… maybe he was confused, a bit disorientated? Maybe he was on drugs or something. He might have an explanation.”

“Fine,” Jimin sighs. “But we’re still waking him up.”

Taehyung is resigned but he doesn’t try to stop Jimin when he walks to the couch, placing one hand on Jeongguk’s shoulder and shoving him. When Taehyung takes a step closer he sees Jeongguk frown in discomfort, but it doesn’t take much more to wake him up.

“What the—” he grumbles, rubbing his eyes with his fists before he blinks them open lazily. His eyes fall on Jimin, who’s right across from him, and so he frowns. “Who are you? Where’s Taehyung?”

“I’m here,” Taehyung calls then, his deep voice causing Jeongguk to shift his eyes to him. Taehyung waves awkwardly at him then. “This is my friend Jimin. He’s visiting.”

“Exactly,” Jimin says then with a nod, Jeongguk looking at him once again. “And you are…?”

“I’m Jeongguk. Taehyung’s guest,” Jeongguk replies, starting to sit up on the couch instead of lying down. “He invited me to stay the night.”

“More like you invited yourself,” Jimin points out. The three of them stay quiet at that, Jeongguk not bothering to confirm nor deny. “So, who are you? And what were you doing naked in a parking lot?”

“I’m not positive it’s a story that you humans are ready to hear,” Jeongguk says then, making Jimin scoff at the same time Taehyung frowns. You humans…? “It’s a bit of a complicated one.”

“Bring it on. We’re ready,” Taehyung says, taking a seat on the coffee table next to Jimin. Maybe they shouldn’t be sitting there, but Taehyung is sure his white Ikea table will be able to handle this. Or at least, he hopes so. “It can’t be any weirder than everything else has been up until now.”

“It’s not weird. Just simply unbelievable for the likes of you,” Jeongguk tells him. Taehyung, who steals a glance at Jimin to check his reaction at Jeongguk’s words, sees his friend lift a skeptical eyebrow.

“Just tell us, Jeongguk,” Jimin says, not interested in his spiel.

“Fine—fine. It’s where my portal dropped me,” Jeongguk says. Taehyung’s eyebrows raise at that. “I was naked because apparently my attire doesn’t seem to be able to change dimensions. Rather stupid if you ask me, but it is what it is. I had just come out of the portal when Taehyung found me, so I saw an opportunity to scathe any trouble with the police for my nakedness.”

Taehyung and Jimin look at each other then, sharing a confused look. Jimin mouths at him, what? Taehyung replies with See? Drugs.

“What are you even talking about?” Taehyung asks him then. “Portals, dimensions—what? What does that mean?”

“It means I came here from another plain,” Jeongguk explains. Taehyung wonders how he can stay so serious while spewing all this bullshit. “I came here from Hell. I’m a demon.”

Taehyung can’t help the way in which his face winces at that, and Jimin can’t hold back a chuckle. The latter says, “Yeah, come on. Now tell us the truth if you don’t want us to kick you out of here as naked as you arrived.”

“It’s nothing but the truth,” Jeongguk insists, still keeping a straight face. “Why do you think Taehyung brought me here, even despite his initial and very understandable wariness? I used my charms on him.”

“What are you even talking about?” Taehyung asks then.

“You felt like you wanted to say no but you couldn’t. That was me—I’m sorry about that, by the way. But desperate times call for desperate measures,” Jeongguk tells him then.

Taehyung can’t help but lets his eyes widen because that’s exactly what Taehyung felt happen last night. Jimin laughs again, but now Taehyung remains silent. It’s an explanation for what happened, and even if Taehyung is rather skeptical about demons and hell, it’s the only explanation he has found so far.

“You can’t be serious right now,” Jimin insists.

“I’m deadly serious, Jimin. Should we run a test?” Jeongguk asks. Jimin crosses his arms over his chest. “How about you tell me about yourself? Tell me your wildest dream. What’s your biggest aspiration? What do you wish you could be when you close your eyes at night and get ready to succumb to sleep?”

“Well, maybe it’s stupid since by now it’s obviously a dream out of my reach, but ever since I was little my biggest dream has been to be a dancer in the Paris Opera Ballet,” Jimin tells him. Jeongguk nods at the same time he raises an eyebrow, and Jimin’s lips part in horror. He turns to look at Taehyung and says, “What the fuck?”

“What?” Taehyung asks.

“I didn’t mean to tell him. Like—I don’t know why I did. I didn’t want to but I… I couldn’t stop?” Jimin tells, stumbling upon his own words. “Oh my god.”

“See? That’s what happened to me last night,” Taehyung replies. “What have you done? Is it one of those drugs—?”

“First of all, I’m a man of morals. I would never drug anyone,” Jeongguk interrupts. Taehyung presses his lips into a thin line. “Second of all, when could I have? Jimin just arrived and I was asleep. I don’t need any drugs. I told you—I’m a demon. I have my charms. All I need is for you to look at me.”

“Don’t do that again,” Jimin tells him. Jeongguk raises both arms, showing them his palms. “Just because you’re right doesn’t mean we believe any of that Hell bullshit.”

“How can you not when I’ve already proven myself?” Jeongguk asks, exasperated. Taehyung doesn’t say anything, and neither does Jimin. “Look, I wish I could spend the whole day here, trying to convince you two that I’m being honest. However, I don’t have the time. I believe I should probably go find some clothes for myself if you could give me some sense of where to go”

“Well, you need to go shopping,” Taehyung tells him. Jeongguk gives him a blank stare. “You know... at a mall. Do you have money?”

“Will I need money?” Jeongguk asks. Taehyung gives him an unbelieving look. “I don’t have anything on me right now. I can get some, though.”

“I can give you some clothes to go out and we can buy more when you have money on you,” Taehyung says, not bothering to ask where Jeongguk plans to get the money from. After his reply mentioning hell and demons, Taehyung isn’t sure whether he wants to ask more or not.

“Give me a minute, then. I need to get in contact with a friend,” Jeongguk says, at the same time he starts walking to the bathroom. “If you would excuse me.”

He disappears behind the door, and only then does Jimin pinch his thigh. “Does he have a phone?” Jimin whispers to him.

“No? He didn’t have anything on him at all,” Taehyung replies, whispering as well. He bites down on his bottom lip, then asks, “Did it happen to you, too? That you couldn’t refuse?”

“Yes, what the fuck. It’s so strange, Taehyung. I’ve never believed in any of it but… Do you think maybe…?” Jimin asks.

“It can’t be,” Taehyung says, firm and final. “There needs to be a logical explanation for all of this.”

“Is that why you’re still gonna help him? With all the clothing stuff,” Jimin asks. Taehyung shrugs. “You’re not under his charms now, right?”

“I don’t think so? Yesterday I was aware that I wasn’t saying what I wanted. Right now… I feel in control. He’s already here, so I might as well help,” Taehyung says, earning himself a nod from Jimin. “Plus, if he gets money and clothes he might leave sooner.”

“I guess you’re right,” Jimin agrees. Right as he says that, the doorbell sounds off. Both of them share a look then, going still. “Were you expecting anyone?”

“Jeongguk’s friend, I guess?” Taehyung asks.

“That’s way too fast,” Jimin says. “Kind of expecting to open the door and have an entire camera crew walk in. I’m convinced this is some prank show bullshit.”

“I hope so,” Taehyung sighs, standing up at the same time Jeongguk opens the door of the bathroom.

“That would be Hoseok,” Jeongguk says, starting to walk towards the door. Taehyung and Jimin share a look. Way too soon. “Mind if I greet my friend?”

“I’ll open it myself,” Taehyung replies, quickly making his way to the door in three long strides. He looks through the peephole, not sure of what to find. He wasn’t expecting to find a very smiley guy at the other side, black hair and happy eyes. “How come he made it here so fast?”

“Demons are fast,” Jeongguk insists. Taehyung and Jimin keep quiet. “Can you open the door? I bet he’s getting impatient now.”

Taehyung takes his hand to the handle of the door, hearing Jimin sigh. And then, still feeling the weight of Jeongguk’s eyes on the back of his neck, he pulls the door open.

There’s a slight feeling of disappointment when he opens the door and isn’t faced with a shit ton of cameras, and the guy behind the door doesn’t pull a mic from behind his back. It makes Taehyung’s wish that this whole mess was coming to an end. Jeongguk’s friend, Hoseok, looks at him with a wide smile that feels almost mocking.

“Hello there,” the guy greets. “Is Jeongguk here?”

“Hoseok!” Jeongguk calls, Taehyung turning around to see him make his way to the door. He pulls back a little, allowing for Taehyung to pull his friend in for a hug under the frame of the door. “How’ve you been? I feel like I haven’t seen you in ages.”

“I’m sure it felt like a lot less back there. Time goes by crazily here, man,” Hoseok greets him, giving him a friendly pat on the back. “How long have you been here for? And how come you’ve ended up at some human’s house?”

“Ran into him last night, right after I arrived here. Lucky coincidence, really,” Jeongguk explains, smiling wide. Taehyung watches the whole interaction in silent, until Jeongguk turns to look at him and addresses him. “Taehyung, do you mind if my friend comes in?”

“No, no, go ahead,” Taehyung says, unable to stop all the madness from happening. “This is all a mess already. May as well keep it going.”

Hoseok laughs but he still steps inside with Jeongguk’s arm around his shoulders. He seems surprised when he spots Jimin and realizes it’s not just the three of them here, waving at Jimin. “Good morning.”

“Good morning, demon,” Jimin replies, standing up from the coffee table. For some reason, that makes Hoseok laugh. “Are you going to try to convince us that you come from Hell, too?”

“I’ve been here on Earth for months now, but I do come from Hell,” Hoseok comments, one hand resting over the backseat of the couch. “I think I’ve been adjusting pretty well, though.”

Taehyung will have to agree on that one. With the cargo pants, chunky Fila sneakers and a big black tee tucked in, Hoseok doesn’t stick out like a sore thumb. He looks like any other boy his age would look in 2019.

“You just look weird,” Jeongguk tells him, wrinkling his nose. Hoseok laughs again. “Did you bring the money?”

“I did, yeah,” Hoseok replies, digging into one of the big pockets of his pants. He pulls out a big, thick enveloped, saying, “This should be enough to last you for a couple of months. If you plan on staying here for longer than that you’re gonna need to find a job, and some more stable living arrangements.”

“I’ll handle that within the next few days. Thank you so much, I owe you one,” Jeongguk says as he takes the envelope from him, Hoseok waving dismissively. “I’ll see you around, yeah?”

“Wait—you’re leaving now?” Taehyung says, turning to Hoseok. “Now that you’re here, shouldn’t you be his demonic guidance in the human world? I’m sure you can do so much better than me at showing him around?”

“I would love to but I have to be at work in less than one hour,” Hoseok replies. Taehyung’s mouth falls open. Really? “I’ll keep an eye on him but I’m not his babysitter.”

“Neither am I!” Taehyung exclaims, being met with silence when no one else says anything. “Seriously? Jeongguk, wouldn’t you rather spend time with a familiar friend? Someone you seem to have known for years?”

“Have spent way too many years with him, actually. A few thousand,” Jeongguk says, Hoseok chuckling at his words. “Plus, demons aren’t meant to escape hell and come to this dimension. If we stick together, it will be easier to find us and bring us back. We need to be discreet.”

“Exactly. Plus, Jeongguk is gonna be found so fast. He’s an important one,” Hoseok says as he elbows Jeongguk lightly. Jeongguk rolls his eyes. “You can let him go in a few days, Taehyung. He’ll get used to it quickly.”

Taehyung doesn’t say anything, just huffs. Jeongguk comments, “I’ll keep you good company, I swear.”

Taehyung huffs again, but it’s muffled by Hoseok as he says, “So… I’ll get going then, yeah?”

“I’m actually gonna leave, too,” Jimin says, earning himself an incredulous look from Taehyung. “I’m sorry, babe, but I have things to do today. I have work soon.”

“Fine,” Taehyung says, resigned. He guesses he’s the one who got himself into this mess, not Jimin. He’s a bit more pissed about Hoseok, since after all he is Jeongguk’s friend and it would make more sense for him to take care of Jeongguk, but he’s not going to insist anymore. He’s surprised by how well both he and Jimin seem to be taking all this demon stuff after the initial shock, wonders if maybe Hoseok and Jeongguk are charming them somehow so they’re more pliant, more relaxed. But, once again, it’s not like last night. He doesn’t feel the urge to disagree with his own actions.

Hoseok and Jimin both leave together, which leaves Jeongguk and Taehyung alone once again. When the pair disappear, Taehyung and Jeongguk look at each other, standing silently in the living room. It’s Taehyung the one who breaks the silence between the two of them.

“So… do you want clothes for shopping, or…?” he asks, unsure of what to say.

“That would be lovely as I don’t think going around naked would be appropriate,” Jeongguk tells him, with the envelope of money still in his hands. “I didn’t realize you had to pay for clothes in the human world.”

“Money moves the human world. I’m sure in hell you’ve seen a lot of money hungry people,” Taehyung tells him, at the same time he starts walking to his room. From behind him, he can hear Jeongguk mutter, that’s true. “I think my clothes will fit you for now. We’re more or less the same size.”

“That came as a big surprise to me,” Jeongguk says, earning himself an inquiring hum from Taehyung. “When I was back in hell, I was much bigger than the humans were there. But now I’m the same size as them. Jimin is smaller than us, though.”

“I guess that’s a good thing if you want to blend in, then. That you’re not a four meters tall monster,” Taehyung comments, making Jeongguk laugh a little. “Okay, let’s see. Maybe I’ll have something you like.”

Finding an outfit for Jeongguk turns out to be much harder than Taehyung thought it would be. He doesn’t like Taehyung’s slacks, asking for some skinny jeans like the ones Jimin was wearing today, but Taehyung doesn’t have any of those. All of Taehyung’s clothes are loose and oversized, and Jeongguk winces when he sees how they fit on him.

“Why don’t you buy anything your size?” he asks, turning around a little to see how loose the big shirt he has on is.

“That’s what it’s supposed to look like,” Taehyung tells him. “God, you complain so much.”

In the end, he puts on some jeans that Taehyung hasn’t worn for years and have a rip on the knees and a big black hoodie, with no embellishments or prints whatsoever. As for the feet, that’s where the problem comes. Despite being the same height, Taehyung turns out to have way bigger feet than Jeongguk. That makes it impossible for him to wear any of the closed shoes Taehyung offers him, so instead he takes some loafers even if he has to be careful as he walks, not wanting to trip and fall. And, well, even if Jeongguk calls them hideous.

The actual shopping trip turns out to be easier. Taehyung takes him to a shopping mall as soon as they’re both ready, and the two of them start raiding the shops on offer. The stuff that Jeongguk gets all goes down that very unexciting road—a few pairs of skinny jeans in four different colors, some plain t-shirts, hoodies, a leather jacket. He gets a pair of boots, but also some chunky sneakers like the ones Hoseok wore. Taehyung feels a pang of jealousy when he sees him spend all this money so freely.

They’re both about to leave when they walk past another shop, this one a fancier looking one. Taehyung doesn’t pay much attention to it, the mannequins are wearing suits and satin-looking shirts. However, Jeongguk stops in his tracks, Taehyung looking behind himself as soon as he notices.

“What now?” he asks. He wants to leave now since it won’t be long until he has to get to work.

“I want to check out this store,” Jeongguk announces. Taehyung gives him a disbelieving look. “What?”

“The clothes in this store couldn’t be more different to everything you’ve bought up until now,” Taehyung states, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. Well, it is, after all.

“I’m a very multidimensional… person, Taehyung,” Jeongguk reminds him. Jeongguk rolls his eyes. “Come on, let’s go inside. I’m sure I’ll also need some more formal clothes.”

“Fine,” Taehyung ends up agreeing, resigned. “But quickly because I need to get to work.”

Jeongguk ends up buying a few shirts, some dressing pants, a nice belt and a pair of dress shoes. After that, they’re finally able to leave, Taehyung driving them both home as Jeongguk looks around at the traffic.

Taehyung doesn’t say anything as he still isn’t quite sure of what to think. Is Jeongguk lying to him about the demon thing, or maybe there’s a chance of it being true? Taehyung has always thought there was more to the world than it seemed, but now when being faced with the real possibility of it being true, he finds it hard to believe. Is he going crazy just for even considering it? Probably. If he told any of his friends, they would look at him like he was losing his mind. Just like he and Jimin looked at Jeongguk at the start.

The ride is silent for the most part. They get back to the apartment and Taehyung unlocks the door for the two of them, entering the pin on the padlock. The two of them walk inside the apartment, and once inside Jeongguk flops on the couch with all the bags surrounding him.

“Well, that was good,” Jeongguk groans, a satisfied smile on his lips as he brings his hands to the back of his head and rests his head there. “I’m happy with what I got.”

“You should be,” Taehyung tells him. “That’s a lot of stuff. You have plenty of outfits to wear now.”

“No need to sound so terribly jealous. I could have gotten you something, too, if you wanted,” Taehyung says, making him scoff. “What?”

“Nothing. Just—nothing,” Taehyung replies, earning himself a shrug from Jeongguk. “So, now that you have clothes and money, are you leaving soon?”

“Wow, Taehyung. I thought we were enjoying each other’s company,” Jeongguk replies, giving him a serious look. “Will you give me a few days? I would like to acquire some other stuff, like a phone. And I don’t think I would like to go to a hotel after this. Maybe you could host me until I find an apartment of my own?”

“You really have no fucking shame,” Taehyung replies, making Jeongguk smirk. “No.”

“Please?”

“No!”

“You wouldn’t kick me out like that. I have nowhere else to go, and I’m so new to the Earth,” Jeongguk says. Taehyung crosses his arms over his chest. “Please. Listen here—I’m a demon. I know how to tell when someone has a pure or a rotten heart, and I can tell you have a kind and gentle soul. You wouldn’t throw me out like that.”

“What makes you think that I would be kind to a demon?” Taehyung asks.

“The fact that you still see humanity in me. Even if I have told you who I am and you’ve seen my charms, you still have trouble believing it. It’s that same skepticism that prevents you from just kicking me out,” Jeongguk replies. Taehyung arches an eyebrow. “Am I wrong?”

“I should kick you out just for saying all that,” Taehyung replies, for some reason annoyed by Jeongguk’s words. He might be good but he’s not a fool.

“But you won’t,” Jeongguk says. “Will you?”

Taehyung sighs. “Look, I need to get to work now,” Taehyung tells him. “We can talk later when I come back. You can stay here tonight, okay? We’ll figure the rest out later.”

“Thank you so much,” Jeongguk says, giving him a big smile. Taehyung rolls his eyes. “I’ll repay you for your hospitality, even if it’s reluctant hospitality.”

“Just don’t ruin or steal anything from me, okay?”

“I’m not a thief!” Jeongguk exclaims, wrinkling his nose. “I’m the punisher of those who do bad—lie, deceive, steal, abuse others, kill.”

“Oh, excuse me for not trusting a demon who I found naked in the street last night,” Taehyung tells him, earning himself an eye roll from Jeongguk. “Just promise you won’t do anything bad.

“Fine,” Jeongguk sighs then. “I promise. I swear on everything unholy—I won’t do anything bad.”

Taehyung feels himself loosen up a little at that. He doesn’t know how reliable the word of a demon can be—probably not a lot. But Jeongguk’s promise still makes him feel a little more at ease, somehow.

 

 

 

When Taehyung agreed to let Jeongguk stay with him, he wasn’t sure of what to expect when he came back. The man claims to be a demon, so he either is a very evil mythical creature or a very dishonest and convincing man. Taehyung doesn’t have many things of value back at his but he’d feel really sad at his laptop disappearing. There’s just so much shit on there.

It comes as a pleasant surprise when he opens the door to his apartment and finds Jeongguk sitting on the sofa, a book in his hands. It comes as an even better surprise when he smells food.

“Did you order?” Taehyung asks, even before greeting him.

“Order?” Jeongguk asks, frowning a little as he lifts his gaze from the book. “And hello, by the way. Was work okay?”

“Order food,” Taehyung clarifies. “And yeah, it went alright. Not very eventful but that’s a good thing in my line of work.”

“Order food? So they, like, bring it to you?” Jeongguk asks. Taehyung nods. “Damn. I wish I knew that before going out.”

Taehyung is about to reply but then he analyzes Jeongguk’s words. I wish I knew that before going out. Going out.

“You did what?” Taehyung asks, his voice pitching up. “How did you even get back inside?”

“Because I saw you put the code in the keypad before,” Jeongguk replies to him, making Taehyung frown. “I bought this made in a store I saw earlier this morning. I thought maybe you’d like to have dinner ready for when you came back from work.”

Taehyung looks over to the food in the kitchen area, the meat and vegetables that are there on two big plates. When he looks back at Jeongguk, he finds the other boy looking at him with expectant eyes, almost as if he was nervous to see his reaction.

“Shall we eat, then?” he asks, watching Jeongguk light up.

And hey, who could’ve known? Maybe sharing his apartment with a demon has its perks.

 

 

 

One day of living with Jeongguk turns into two, then three, and in the end, a whole week goes by without Taehyung telling Jeongguk to leave. He’s a bit surprised by it, yes, but the truth is that living with Jeongguk isn’t that bad… Not only does he come home to cooked meals, but he’s also offered to contribute to the rent and bills. And well, Jeongguk is fun to be around.

It’s funny to Taehyung how he can be so familiar with certain aspects of human life, but so unaware about others. Taehyung teaches him how to browse the internet, of which existence Jeongguk knew of, even if he had no idea of how to navigate it. He also teaches him how to turn the TV on, discovering Jeongguk has a soft spot for historical dramas that remind him of times he—claims that—he has lived through. He also seems to love bubblegum pop, and knows the lyrics to more 2000s American pop songs that Taehyung thought were possible for a demon.

Maybe at some point Taehyung stops feeling uncomfortable, letting himself relax around Jeongguk. Maybe he finds him endearing, along with his inability to navigate the real world. Taehyung is a little skeptical, yes, but he puts it aside. And once he forgets about all that, he finds out that he likes this—being with Jeongguk. And he likes it a lot.

 

 

 

“Hey, Taehyung,” Jeongguk asks him one night, after they’ve both had dinner and tidied up the kitchen. “You never told me what your job was.”

Taehyung lets himself flop back on the couch when he hears that, raising one eyebrow as he twists his head around to look at Jeongguk. Jeongguk has been asking him a lot of stuff about, well, everything. The topic of Taehyung’s job was bound to come up at some point, and the truth is that he’s even surprised Jeongguk hasn’t asked until now.

“Why don’t you try to guess it?” Taehyung asks. “I picked you up right after coming out of work. Didn’t you see where we were?”

“The only thing I saw that night was the parking lot, literally,” Jeongguk replies, making Taehyung hum. “But I see you come back with wet hair every day. Do you shower after work?”

“Yeah, I do,” Taehyung replies, sitting cross-legged on the couch. Jeongguk, who takes the armrest, hums. “Make a guess.”

“You are… a pilates instructor at a gym,” Jeongguk replies, making Taehyung cackle loudly.

“Pilates? Really?” Taehyung asks, a smile still dancing on his mouth. He has trouble imagining himself doing pilates, let alone teaching it to other people. “You’re warm. Close, but not quite right.”

“Okay, okay, let me think,” Jeongguk replies, scratching his chin. “Is it at the gym?”

“Nope, not a gym.”

“But you are an instructor,” Jeongguk says, getting a nod from Taehyung. “Dance?”

“God, no. Not my forte,” Taehyung replies to him. “It’s easy, seriously.”

“Is it some kind of sport?” Jeongguk asks him.

Taehyung bites down on the corner of his bottom lip to contain a smile, at the same time he says, “Yes. Getting hot now.”

“A team sports?” Taehyung shakes his head, negatively. “How about… swimming?”

“Bingo,” Taehyung says, sitting up as he curls his hands around his ankles. “And, um… What did you say you do in Hell? Punish people?”

“Pretty much, yes,” Jeongguk tells him. “That’s what we all do down there but I don’t like it. I don’t like to make people feel pain. I don’t like to punish.”

Taehyung gives Jeongguk a little smile because he believes that. After getting to know Jeongguk a little, Taehyung finds it hard to believe that Jeongguk would get joy in making someone suffer. That’s probably why he left, Taehyung thinks. Not that he has asked yet, and he’s not sure if he will. It seems like a bit of a personal topic.

Instead, he tries to break the ice with a joke. “That makes it sound like you’re a professional dom,” Taehyung asks, making Jeongguk laugh.

Just as expected, Jeongguk laughs. That is the aspect of human life that Jeongguk is eerily familiar with: sex. After all, he has been living in Hell. Taehyung guesses a lot of sex talk, and maybe sex itself, happens in Hell. Especially the nasty kind.

“Shut up, holy shit,” Jeongguk tells him, shoving Taehyung on the shoulder. “You’re such a mess.”

Taehyung laughs, throwing his head back and feeling his eyes crinkle as bubbly laughter erupts from his chest. It’s hard to tell when all of this started, when Taehyung started to feel so at ease around Jeongguk. What he knows for sure is that he doesn’t want him to leave.

 

 

 

That time at Taehyung's apartment was the first time that Jeongguk and Jimin saw each other, but it certainly wasn't the last. Agreeing to live with Taehyung indirectly implies agreeing to have Jimin over more often than not. Jimin dropped by a lot, and Taehyung was delighted to see his best friend fall for the peculiar little devil just like Taehyung himself had. There is something so stupidly charming about him, once you get over the fact that he's... well, a demon. 

Seeing how well Jeongguk and Jimin got along, it was only a matter of time before Taehyung introduced him to the rest of his friends. He comes to an agreement both with his best friend and his new roommate to keep two things a secret: first of all, that Jeongguk is a demon; second of all, that Taehyung has been sharing his apartment with him. 

“I just think it would be hard for anyone to understand why we're sharing a one bedroom apartment if they don't know about your inability to exist by yourself in the human world,” Taehyung says, trying to explain to Jeongguk the reasons why he thinks things would work better this way. “Just say you met me at my work.”

“And say what? That I'm one of the little kids you teach?” Jeongguk asks, clearly a bit skeptical.

“They're not gonna ask that much,” Taehyung replies. “And if they do, then just say you went swimming there. We only teach on a few of the lanes, so the rest of the pool is free for the public.”

“Your story has too many holes,” Jeongguk complains. 

“Then you just improvise. Put your little demon head to good use.”

After that, Jeongguk doesn't argue anymore, and Taehyung finds a date that works with all of his friends as well as with Jeongguk and himself. Not that Jeongguk has any places to be, really; other than Taehyung and Jimin, Jeongguk doesn't really have any human friends. He sees Hoseok sometimes, but Taehyung is sure they can work around that.

And then, he has an idea.

“Why don't you invite Hoseok to come with us?” he suggests, guessing it might be easier for Jeongguk to feel welcome if there’s more people he knows. From what Taehyung has seen of Hoseok, he doesn't seem to have much of a problem with new people, quite the opposite.

“Hoseok?” Jimin asks then from where he's sitting. Both Taehyung and Jeongguk look at him when he says that, giving him a curious look. Jimin sits up a little straight. “How come?”

“Because he's Jeongguk's friend. Why else?” Taehyung says, at the same time his gaze shifts to Jeongguk again. “You can do that telepathic thing you do to get in contact with him, and—”

“Honestly, that won’t be necessary at all,” Jimin says, making both Taehyung and Jeongguk look at him with a confused expression.  “We could just call him? I have his number.”

For a moment there, Taehyung is just about to be like much better then. let's call him instead, as he still feels rather weirded out by this whole communication thing Hoseok and Jeongguk do. But then he fully processes what Jimin had just said, the words really sinking in. I have his number.

“Wait, what?” he blurts out. 

“His number?” Jeongguk asks.  “How did you get his number?”

“Do you guys remember on the day I met Jeongguk, how Hoseok came to bring him money and we left at the same time?” Jimin asks them, both of them nodding at the same time.  “Well, we were talking in the elevator and one thing led to another and we ended up grabbing a coffee.”

“Jimin...” Taehyung starts, but Jimin keeps talking.

“And then we exchanged numbers. And maybe we've been talking a bit over the past few weeks, meeting up occasionally, too. He's really nice to be around,” Jimin tells them, starting to babble a bit. Taehyung's eyebrows raise. “And we have a lot of stuff in common, and we both make each other laugh a lot. Point is—I have his number if you need to call. Since I guess that's less invasive.”

“Jimin,” Taehyung calls again, making Jimin hum.  “Are you going out on dates with a demon?”

Jimin lets out a strangled noise, at the same time Jeongguk starts chuckling and claps his hands, seemingly amused by the situation. Taehyung's eyes are wide in disbelief, because despite leaving together, Taehyung didn't think Jimin and Hoseok would casually go get a drink right after. There is nothing wrong with it, of course. Taehyung was just taken by surprise.

“The word date might have been mentioned a couple of times,” Jimin confesses, making Jeongguk laugh once again as Taehyung's eyes widen even more.  “But you have no right to be mad! I'm dating one, you're living with another. We're even.”

“He makes a good point,” Jeongguk says, looking at Taehyung then. Taehyung shushes him.

“I'm not mad!” Taehyung exclaims, gesturing with his hands.  “Just surprised. Didn't take you for the type to be into demons, you know?”

“Takes one to know one, Taetae,” Jimin tells him, at the same time a devious grin appears on his lips. Taehyung feels his cheeks grow warmer at the comment for some inexplicable reason. What?

“What are you trying to imply?” Jeongguk asks them. Jimin's grin widens even more, and Taehyung throws a pillow at Jimin.

“That's not true,” he says, making his best friend laugh as he catches the pillow in his hand.  “Just—shut up. And call Hoseok. Ask him if he's free on Saturday evening.”  

“Sir, yes sir,” Jimin replies, getting his phone from his pocket and moving back to the kitchen area to talk.

Taehyung buries his face in his hands, feeling his cheeks still warm against the skin of his palms. Right next to him, Jeongguk is quiet, but Taehyung can feel his eyes on him, scrutinizing. Despite Jeongguk's question asking Jimin what he was trying to imply, Taehyung knows that Jeongguk is aware of the intention behind that one comment. And for that reason, that only makes the blush on Taehyung's cheeks get even worse. 

 

 

 

 

Saturday evening does find Hoseok and Jeongguk meeting up with some of Taehyung and Jimin's friends. Yoongi and Namjoon's interest seems to be piqued when Taehyung mentions introducing to them a new close friend of his, but what really does the trick for both of them is the moment where he mentions that the guy Jimin has been dating will be tagging along, too. Of course, they weren't going to say no, but it's that piece of information that turns their reply into an easy yes.

At first, Taehyung is a bit worried by the fact that Yoongi and Namjoon are both a bit shyer and more reserved than Taehyung and Jimin, something that has the potential to make Jeongguk feel awkward. Jimin shares the same concern, so in the end they decide to go to the one place where everyone's inhibitions disappear, making it possible for everyone to unleash themselves and have the best night ever, for all of them.

They, of course, are going to noraebang.

Which is how the six of them find themselves in a rented noraebang room in Hongdae, with a collection of empty bottles of soju on the table at the back of the room. Hoseok and Jeongguk are on the small step that serves as a stage now, mics in their hands as they do a very out-of-tune rendition of TWICE's What Is Love? Taehyung, who has his phone out as he records the two of them attempting to follow the choreography, can't keep the fond smile off his face. From the corner of his eye, Taehyung can see Jimin laughing with his whole body, rolling on the couch as his shoulders shake with each of his chuckles. 

Hoseok and Jeongguk have big smiles plastered on their faces and their cheeks are rosy from the soju, and for that reason, Taehyung's chest feels warm. Just in the same way that he feels when he notices the grins on Yoongi's and Namjoon's faces, seemingly amused by the pair.

And Taehyung likes this. Taehyung, who has always been fiercely protective of his friends, shouldn't allow for two boys who claim to be demons to merge so easily into his friend group, to get so close to the people he loves. Hell, part of him still wants to believe Jeongguk and Hoseok have been lying to them all along, even if he has the fact that they can communicate from miles away without Jeongguk having a phone and the charms as proof. 

Taehyung feels surprised by how badly he wanted tonight to go well, how much he wanted all of his friends to like Jeongguk as much as he does. Taehyung's lips part in realization then, when he finds himself dwelling on that thought. It's much easier to admit it now, with his brain a little fuzzy and tipsy with the alcohol, than it was the other day, when Jimin brought it up. Maybe Taehyung likes Jeongguk a little bit.

 

 

“You know what?” Taehyung distractedly asks Jeongguk when they're getting back home later that night. Taehyung feels tipsy as hell, his perception of the world and his balance now a bit questionable, but he's not drunk. He's just at the point of tipsy where everything is funny, and he feels light and happy. Jeongguk is the same, and so the two of them stumble across the streets of Seoul, trying to get back to Taehyung's apartment. 

“I don't know what,” Jeongguk replies, followed by a hiccup. Taehyung giggles, finding the sound the funniest sound in the world. “What?”

“For some reason, when you said you were a demon, I imagined you'd have more resistance to alcohol,” Taehyung confesses, teasing him. “But you don't. You're a lightweight.”

“Oi! You're no better,” Jeongguk accuses him, making Taehyung laugh again. Jeongguk has made a point, and there is nothing remotely funny about what he said, but it seems far more comedic in Taehyung's alcohol-induced haze, he swears.  “If anything, you're worse.”

“But I’m just human,” Taehyung rebates. “While you're a demon—well, you claim to be one. Coming from hell and all that.”

“What do you mean claim, huh?” Jeongguk asks him then, stopping in his tracks. Taehyung keeps walking a few steps, but he stops when he feels Jeongguk's arm curl around his wrist. “Wait up. I'll prove it to you.”

“Prove it to me how?” Taehyung asks, starting to turn around.

“Wait! Stay there,” Jeongguk says, making Taehyung freeze. “I'm gonna show you my demon form.”

“Your... demon form,” Taehyung repeats, a bit skeptical.

“What are you sounding so disbelieving for? It's a thing,” Jeongguk protests from behind him. Taehyung clicks his tongue.

“Because that sounds like a pile of shit. No offense,” Taehyung replies, his tipsiness making him a bit more vocal about his lack of faith in... well, the fact that Jeongguk is a demon. He tries to play along for the most part, because right now he has no idea what to believe. It makes him feel like a fool to even consider the possibility, but he thinks he believes. Thinks. Until he realizes that, well, he's probably being a fool. It makes no sense, not even to himself.

“It's a pile of truth,” Jeongguk replies. Taehyung rolls his eyes. “How do you think Hoseok got to your apartment the first time so quickly? He came by flying.”

“That's not true. Plus, someone would have seen—” Taehyung starts, but Jeongguk cuts him off.

“Turn around,” he interrupts. Taehyung's mouth closes. “Look at me, Tae.” 

And despite Taehyung being skeptical, he still feels his heart in his throat right then and there. He clenches his fists to his sides, takes a deep breath, and then starts to move. And even if he has lived with Jeongguk for a long time, and he supposedly has known about him being a demon for quite some time, nothing could have been enough of a warning for what he sees once he swirls around on his heels. Nothing could have made him ready for the sight.

It's Jeongguk—same Jeongguk, same black hair, same face, almost same everything. His shirt is off now, but that's not what Taehyung is paying attention to right now. Because behind Jeongguk, Taehyung sees wings. Literal wings. They're feathery, angel-like. The only difference with those is the color. Jeongguk's wings are tall, big and black. And Taehyung, for some reason, can't bring himself to tear his eyes away from them. He is entranced, eyes widening a little when the wings move behind Jeongguk's back.

“When I was in Hell I towered over humans,” Jeongguk laments. It gives Taehyung a certain feeling of deja-vu, since it's something Taehyung has heard him complain about before. The only difference now is that he has Jeongguk in said demon form before him, and he just... well, he's having trouble processing it. “But now I’m so much smaller. I’m the same height I am in the human form.”

“Oh, shit, Jeongguk,” Taehyung tells him then, taking a tentative step closer. He's starting to feel a bit dizzy now. “You have horns.”

There they are, now that he takes a closer look. They're black, which is why at first Taehyung didn't spot them in between the locks of Jeongguk's hair. He almost wants to reach out and touch, but maybe demons don't like it too much when people touch their horns. Taehyung isn't an expert on demon protocol yet; he's been a bit too busy trying to teach Jeongguk human protocol, first.

“And a tail,” Jeongguk tells him, his eyes glistening deviously. And that is not just a saying—his eyes literally glisten then, a red ring appearing around the irises. Taehyung felt dizzy already, but now he  really does feel like the world is spinning too fast and he can't keep up with it.

“And a tail,” Taehyung repeats, his legs starting to fail him. “Oh, my God.”

“Well, not quite,” Jeongguk replies. It's then that Taehyung stumbles, losing control over his own legs as he falls to the ground. He closes his eyes, hears Jeongguk's alarmed voice call,  “Taehyung?”

But Taehyung can't reply, of course not. He's so shocked—by all of this, by Jeongguk's demon form, by the fact that he was telling the truth all along—that he promptly passes out. 

 

 

Taehyung wakes up the following morning feeling like a train has run him over.

It's strange, Taehyung thinks, because he doesn't recall drinking that much last night. His head still hurts, and so he groans as he rubs his eyes and tries to pry them open. On top of that, he had the weirdest dream through the night, the most unbelievable one.

It was a soft knock on the door of his bedroom that woke him up, so Taehyung isn’t really shocked when he hears Jeongguk's sweet, honey voice call,  “Good morning, sleepyhead. How are you feeling?”

“Like hell,” Taehyung replies, earning himself a laugh from Jeongguk. Hell, haha. He rolls to his side, eyes still closed as he buries his face in the pillow. His head hurts sharply then, and so Taehyung groans again. “My head hurts so much.”

“Well, I'm not shocked. You hit your head pretty hard,” Jeongguk tells him, then. “I brought you breakfast, by the way.”

It's the mention of breakfast that really, really makes Taehyung sit up on the bed, facing the world and the dreaded sunlight. He takes a look at Jeongguk, who is wearing a white t-shirt and some basketball shorts Taehyung gave him for sleeping. In his hands there is a tray.

“What did you make?” Taehyung asks, sitting cross-legged as Jeongguk approaches more and leaves the tray on the bed. Orange juice for the two of them, croissants, some sliced fruit—Taehyung feels his mouth water at the sight. Oddly enough, despite the hangover making his head hurt, his stomach is fine. It's then that he recalls what Jeongguk just said. “I hit my head?”

“Oh, my—you don't remember?” Taehyung shakes his head, softly as to try to avoid the same sharp pain from before when he moved too fast. “You passed out last night in the middle of the street. I had to carry you back here.”

“Fuck, no. No, no, no, that's so embarrassing, fuck,” Taehyung says, feeling his cheeks get warm. Did he really pass out drunk on his first night out with Jeongguk? He swears he didn't drink that much last night. He only felt slightly buzzed, but now Jeongguk is telling him he passed out. And now that Jeongguk mentions it, he has no recollection of getting home. “I didn't mean to get that drunk. God, what's wrong with me?”

“You didn't pass out drunk. Do you seriously not remember?” Jeongguk asks, making Taehyung frown in confusion. “Do you not remember how I showed you my demon form?”

Taehyung's frown deepens for a moment, but then he remembers the dream from last night. Or well, what he had assumed was a dream. He remembers he and Jeongguk standing in the street, and then turning around and seeing Jeongguk with wings, horns, a tail, some red his eyes. It feels like a blur. The memory isn't too clear in his mind, but now that he thinks about it... now that he thinks about it, he remembers. He remembers teasing Jeongguk about being a lightweight, and he remembers Jeongguk trying to prove to him that he’s a demon by shifting to his demon form. Taehyung's eyes widen, the memories rushing back to his mind.

“What the—I dreamed that,” Taehyung blurts out then, more to convince himself than anything. Jeongguk shakes his head at him, negatively. Almost as if he was saying, nope, you did not, it was very much real. Taehyung's lips part, he says, “You're fucking with me.”  

“You saw it yourself. Your memories aren't lying, Taehyung,” Jeongguk tells him, from where he's sitting on the bed next to him. “I can show you again if you want.”

“Show me,” Taehyung tells him then, not missing one beat. The memory is messy, but the image is clear in his mind, and fuck—he needs to see it for himself again. When his mind is not clouded by alcohol, when he can be sure that what he's seeing is not a product of his imagination.  “I want to see.”

“Close your eyes,” Jeongguk tells him. Taehyung doesn't hesitate, blinking his eyes closed. He feels the bed shift as Jeongguk stands, then hears the rustling of clothes in front of him. It's only a few seconds later that Jeongguk tells him, “Now look at me again.”

He opens his eyes then, only to have the air knocked out of his lungs. If the memory of Jeongguk standing in a dark street last night was enough to leave him speechless, chest tight, then this... this is something else, completely.

The t-shirt that Jeongguk was wearing is now on top of the mattress, lying discarded after Jeongguk took it off, probably to make space for his wings. And the wings, good—they're majestic. They’re massive, but they also look... so elegant? Maybe it's the fact that they're the color of carbon, so, so dark. Taehyung's lips part in awe, watching the feathers and the delicacy of them. He flinches a little when they move behind Jeongguk's body, not expecting that.

“Can you turn around?” Taehyung asks then, his voice sounding small even to his own ears. He's just so in shock that he can't bring himself to properly speak up.

“Of course,” Jeongguk replies, his wings retracting so he can comfortably turn around without hitting any objects in the room. “Do you believe me now?”

“I do. I do, fuck,” Taehyung replies, watching the way in which the wings bury themselves in Jeongguk's body. They're just... a part of him. A part of his body. Seeing the way they expand again, the muscles on Jeongguk's back moving when he does so, is just reassurance in that. Taehyung's heart skips a beat. “Can I get closer? Can I touch?”

Jeongguk laughs at that, which makes Taehyung feel a little better about the question. For a second there, after asking it so shamelessly, Taehyung was worried that he was being too invasive, breaking boundaries that he didn't know about. But Jeongguk laughing makes him feel better, knowing that he took no offense to it.

“You can. But be careful, they're sensitive,” Jeongguk indicates. Carefully as to not knock the tray off, Taehyung gets off the bed and places himself behind Jeongguk. He looks at the wings dumbfounded, tentatively bringing his hand up and feeling the feathers under the tips of his fingers. “Do you like them?”

“This is... this is amazing, Jeongguk,” Taehyung replies, his fingers travelling to the junction of Jeongguk's wings and his back. Jeongguk jolts a little when he brushes his fingers on there, the skin there probably more sensitive. Jeongguk swallows down thickly. For some reason, he can't hold a fit of bubbly laughter then. “You weren't lying.”

“I wouldn't lie to you, silly,” Jeongguk tells him then, almost as if it were the most obvious thing in the world. Taehyung laughs, again.  “You're my human, after all.”

Taehyung's stomach twists pleasantly at the words. His human. Taehyung thinks he likes that—likes the thought of being Jeongguk's human. Likes the thought of being Jeongguk's anything.

“And you're my demon,” Taehyung replies, Jeongguk laughing at that. “I'm sorry I didn't believe you for so long...”

“I know it's hard to believe something like this. You never knew about this... well, about this other part of the world,” Jeongguk tells him.  “I would like some compensation, though.”

It's the way in which he says that, so soft yet so playful, that makes Taehyung smile, even if Jeongguk can't see it. “And what would you like?” he asks.

“A hug,” Jeongguk tells him.  “Can I get one?”

“Come on,” Taehyung says. “Get your hug.”

Jeongguk spins around on his heels then, retreating his wings once again. When he faces Taehyung, there’s a wide smile on his face, one that doesn't falter when Taehyung surges forward and pulls him in for a hug. He wraps his hands around Jeongguk's neck, feeling the wings under the tips of his fingers and on the insides of his wrist. It tickles.

“Am I forgiven?” he asks, at the time he feels Jeongguk's arms wrap tightly around his waist. Taehyung feels butterflies inside his tummy, his chest resting flush against Jeongguk's.

“Of course you are, my Tae,” Jeongguk tells him.  “I was never mad in the first place.”

Taehyung doesn't reply at that—just sighs, and lets himself melt into Jeongguk's embrace. 

His Tae. Taehyung really, really likes that.

 

 

Taehyung thinks that Jeongguk has proven himself to be a very considerate roommate—friend? A very considerate person, if demons qualify as such. A couple of weeks back he started to cook dinner for Taehyung, first with Jimin and Hoseok's supervision, but now on his own. He takes care of the grocery shopping for the two of them, as well as other house chores while Taehyung is out at work. Taehyung insists that he doesn't have to, that he feels bad with Jeongguk taking care of so much stuff, but Jeongguk is firm.

“I want to help you out,” he had told Taehyung when he tried to convince him. “You're helping me by allowing me to stay here, and teaching me how to pass as a human. It's only fair I help you out, instead of lazing around when you're out at work.”

Jeongguk has also proven himself to be very stubborn, so Taehyung doesn't argue with him further. Some help is nice, he will admit. Especially because with two people sharing the apartment, the mess is double what it was before. It's nice to not have to do everything on his own.

The point is, Jeongguk is considerate. He does plenty for Taehyung, so much so that he feels taken care of. Usually it's just stuff like that—cooking for him, helping him out, maybe buying Taehyung's favorite desserts after asking Jimin for a list of them. Taehyung is starting to get a bit used to them, used to being spoiled like this, but he didn't see coming what Jeongguk would do next.

Taehyung leaves work particularly tired today. As he walks out of the building, he daydreams about getting home, having some dinner and curling up on the sofa while he and Jeongguk watch something. Jeongguk has turned out to be a big lover of Netflix and literally everything the streaming site has to offer no matter the genre. Taehyung has lost count of how many times the two of them have sat on the sofa, watching movies or episode after episode of some random show until they both were sleepy. That, or until Taehyung realized he had work the following day and therefore should probably go to sleep.

His daydreams see themselves interrupted when, as soon as he leaves the building, he spots a familiar face. He stops in his tracks, hand still holding the door open as he asks, “Jeongguk?”

Jeongguk looks up from the floor, a smile spreading across his face. “Hi!” he greets, Taehyung stepping away from the door to let his co-worker leave. After a low see you tomorrow, Taehyung diverts his attention back to Jeongguk. “I came to pick you up.”

“Wait—really?” Taehyung asks, his face lighting up. Jeongguk nods. “Did you seriously remember the way? You haven't been here ever since the first night.”

“Demons are good at orientation,” Jeongguk says, making Taehyung laugh. “I have a suggestion to make, although I'm not sure whether you’ll agree to it or not.”

“Well, lay it on me, then,” Taehyung tells him, intrigued by what it might be that Jeongguk has to propose to him. “What is it?”

“I'm gonna take you home,” Jeongguk tells him.

Taehyung frowns in confusion. He doesn't see how this is not something that he would agree to. “Okay...?” he says, half-expecting Jeongguk to say something else.

“By flying.”

Taehyung's lips part. Then they close. Then they open again. “Jeongguk, what?”

“It'll be fun, you'll see,” Jeongguk tells him. For some reason, the mention of flying alone is enough to make Taehyung's heartbeat speed up. “I have a feeling you'll like it.”

“Jeongguk, I—” Taehyung starts. Jeongguk raises an eyebrow at him. He doesn't get to say anything else, though. Because before he can open his mouth, he feels tugging on his sweatpants and hears a squeal.

Of course, because Taehyung's luck is like this, it’s precisely as he tries to tell his demon roommate that he can not take him home by flying when not only one, but two of the girls he teaches show up. Mina and Miyeon are twin sisters, and they have been in Taehyung's beginner group for the last couple of months. Taehyung turns around only to find the two girls looking at him with wide smiles and bright eyes, their hair wet from the shower they took after spending all day in the pool.

The girls are four-years-old, and are also at a stage where strangers don't seem all that intimidating to them, as they're both outgoing and quite extroverted. That must be what makes them twirl around Taehyung's legs, one of them fisting the fabric of Jeongguk's own sweatpants and giving them a tug.

“Hi!” she, Mina, calls. Taehyung gives Jeongguk a curious look, wanting to see his reaction to this: it's the first time Taehyung sees Jeongguk interact with a child.

“Uh, I—hello,” Jeongguk says, giving Taehyung a horrified look. Taehyung raises an eyebrow, teasing. “It's nice to meet you.”

The girl giggles at that, her sister Miyeon leaving Taehyung to cling to Jeongguk's other leg. Taehyung notices the girls' parents behind him, so he politely turns around to greet them before returning his attention back to Jeongguk. Jeongguk, who is still awkwardly looking down at the kids clinging to his legs.

“This is my friend Jeonggukie,” Taehyung announces, seeing the girls look up at him before their eyes go back to Jeongguk. “He's a bit shy but he's very happy to meet you two.”

Jeongguk gives Taehyung another look, and this one is clearly asking for help. Taehyung just smiles, because he never thought Jeongguk would be like this with kids, but he guesses it makes sense. There are probably not many kids around Hell, which is a big relief to Taehyung. Jeongguk swallows down, looking down at the twins and forcing a smile.

“Such a pleasure to meet girls as, uh, adorable as you two,” Jeongguk hesitates, stealing a glance at Taehyung as he says that. Taehyung nods, as to tell him that he's doing well enough, and so Jeongguk adds, “Taehyung's friends are my friends.”

It's then that the parents of the two girls call them back, the two of them letting go of Jeongguk's legs and obediently getting back to their parents. They apologize to both Taehyung and Jeongguk for the enthusiasm of the twins, but the two of them reassure them that it's okay, and that it’s no bother. Taehyung, who has been learning how to read Jeongguk, can tell that despite his awkwardness, the other wasn't uncomfortable. 

Once the family of four starts walking away, Jeongguk turns around and looks at Taehyung with urgency. His eyes are dramatically wide as he says, “That was hard.”

Taehyung laughs, slightly amused. He starts to walk in the direction of the car, hoping Jeongguk has now forgotten the flying. 

“It really isn't hard,” he tells Jeongguk, seeing the other frown from the corner of his eye. He doesn't stop walking, adding, “You're just not used to kids, are you?”

“We don't see a lot of them in Hell, no,” Jeongguk admits. So Taehyung's guess was right then. “They're so weird. What is the fine line between treating them appropriately for their age, and overdoing it and them thinking you're weird?”

“No one knows where the line is. Also, it depends on the kid. I'm sure you just need to get used to being around them,” Taehyung replies, fishing for his car keys in the pocket of his jacket. When he finds them, he points them at the car and unlocks the doors. “Come on, get in.”

“Wait! I thought you’d let me take you back flying,” Jeongguk protests then, standing still as Taehyung pulls the driver's door open. “I can't leave the car here all night. Some other time, yeah? But you'll have to tell me beforehand.”

“Fine then,” Jeongguk says, resigned. He opens the door and takes the passenger seat, going straight for the seatbelt as Taehyung taught him to do. “You better not be saying that for me to drop it for now, with no intentions of sticking to your word afterwards.”

Taehyung laughs as he turns the engine on, starting the car. “You have a twisted mind, Jeongguk,” he accuses. “Of course I'm gonna stick by my word. I'm a good person.”

“Well, I'm a demon. I know my techniques,” Jeongguk says. Taehyung laughs once again. “Promise me you're gonna let me take you flying with me soon.”

“I promise,” Taehyung replies. “How soon is soon?”

“I don't know. Soon,” Jeongguk comments. Taehyung sees him relax against the backrest of his seat then. “By the way, can we stop by McDonald's? I don't have any food ready for tonight.”

“We'll stop by the Drive-Thru on the way home,” Taehyung says, earning himself a pleased sound by Jeongguk. “Happy?”

“Very much so,” Jeongguk replies. “I'm hungry as hell. Get it? Hell.”

Taehyung smiles, shaking his head at the poor pun. He turns the car, taking a different route home today so they can stop by McDonald's, giving Jeongguk his fix of junk food. 

 

 

Turns out, that when Jeongguk said soon, he meant really soon. So soon that, after they arrive back at the apartment that very same night, Jeongguk pops the question once again. 

“Can I take you flying now?” Jeongguk says as soon as they’re back inside. 

Taehyung freezes, the door clicking shut behind him. Jeongguk, who was walking ahead of him as they got into the apartment, looks at him with a raised eyebrow. 

“I don't know if it's a good idea...” 

“But you promised,” Jeongguk tells him, his lips jutting out into a slight pout. Taehyung bites on his lower lip. 

“What if someone sees us?” he asks. 

“No one will. Trust me—and if they did, no one will realize what's actually going on,” Jeongguk explains. “I’ve been flying before, and I know Hoseok flies all the time. It's not humans seeing me that you have to worry about.” 

Taehyung takes a shaky breath, his eyes fleeting away from Jeongguk's. In an intelligible murmur, he confesses, “I'm not very good with heights.” 

He looks up at Jeongguk then, who is looking at him with a slightly confused expression plastered on his face. He says, “What?” 

Taehyung clears his throat then, again unable to look at Jeongguk in the eye as he says, “I said, I'm not very good with heights.” 

Jeongguk's lips part then, giving Taehyung a curious look. “You're scared of them?” Jeongguk asks.

For some reason, Taehyung feels embarrassed. At his age, he knows there’s nothing wrong with having a phobia or fear, per se. Somehow, he still can't help but remember that class years ago in Physical Education, when they were made to climb a rope with several knots tied on it, in front of the whole class. Taehyung climbed it just fine; he has always been agile and good at these things, so he went up it quite easily. The problem came when it was time for him to climb down, and therefore meaning he had to look down. It's then, when he saw how small his teacher and classmates looked from up there, that Taehyung froze. And then he started crying. And then everyone laughed.

Taehyung is not good with heights—he never has been, and he never will be. Rock climbing for birthdays was his worst nightmare, at least until he figured out he could just stick to watching from the sidelines. That was years ago, but now Taehyung isn't any better when it comes to heights. For that reason, the thought of flying all over Seoul with nothing else but the strength of his arms to keep him from falling... Well, it's not the best. Taehyung is scared, yes.

“I know it's stupid,” Taehyung rushes to explain. “But it's just... they make me freeze up, and it makes me feel a bit anxious. It's not good.”

“I promise you I wouldn't drop you,” Jeongguk rushes to say, starting to sound... desperate, even? Taehyung pursues his lips out. “You would be safe with me. You can hold on as tight as you want to me, and I would do the same. And you wouldn't have to look down.”

Taehyung sighs. “It's not nice to pressure people into facing their phobias like this, did you know that?”

“Well, I’ve spent hundreds of years torturing people in Hell. Something must have stuck with me,” Jeongguk jokes around. Taehyung can't help but laugh a little at that. “I'm not going to force you to do anything you don't want. I respect you and your decisions.”

Taehyung bites down on his bottom lip, staring at Jeongguk. He can tell Jeongguk is trying his best not to show it, but he looks disappointed. Maybe this was something important to Jeongguk, something that he was looking forward to sharing with Taehyung. He takes a deep breath, reaching with one hand to cup Jeongguk's face.

“Gukkie, hey...” he says, Jeongguk looking at him with wide expectant eyes. “I meant it when I promised we would do it soon. Not tonight, but soon. I promise, yeah?”

“Don't make yourself do anything you don't want to for me,” Jeongguk tells him. Taehyung laughs dismissively, so Jeongguk insists, “Please. I don't... I don't understand how it feels. A phobia, or fears. I've never felt emotions such as that. I want to be patient and understanding for you, just like you're being for me.”

“We'll work around it,” Taehyung tells him, giving Jeongguk a meaningful look. Jeongguk huffs, but then makes a noise in agreement. “Hug?”

Jeongguk doesn't reply, opting instead for surging forward and burying Taehyung into a tight, warm embrace. Taehyung closes his eyes, letting one of his hands thread in Jeongguk's hair as he keeps him close. Taehyung means it—he'll find a way for Jeongguk to show him, without triggering a panic attack for him. But until then, he will content himself with one of Jeongguk's warm hugs. 

 

 

Taehyung has always been a curious person by nature. There is so much he wants to know about many things; about demons, Hell, and how both of those work is an intriguing matter, to say the least. On one of Taehyung's free days, he manages to get Jeongguk to lie starfish on the bed with him as the two of them talk. And Taehyung asks question after question, everything that comes to his mind; Jeongguk replies to each and every one of them. He seems like he likes to talk about it, even if Taehyung knows that he isn't the most fond of the place.

“I'm running out of things now,” Taehyung says, thinking hard. “Oh! I know.”

“What is it, huh?” Jeongguk asks him, turning his head a little to talk to him. 

“You mentioned once you were hundreds of years old,” Taehyung starts, then.  “How many? How does age work for demons?”

“Well, when we're in Hell we're immortal,” Jeongguk starts telling him. “We don't get injured. We don't age. There is no such thing as... a child demon. Didn't you notice how awkward I was the other day with the twins?” Taehyung nods. “That's because demons aren't... born. Not in the way you understand it, of course.”

“Then how?” Taehyung asks, curious. “And aren't you immortal now?”

“Right now I'm very, very mortal—I can be hurt, I will get old at the same pace as a human would. I have the same physical needs for food or water. Coming to Earth means giving up your immortality for as long as you're here, but you can go back there and return to immortality. As for your other question... well, there are demons in Hell who have existed for eternity. They've been there since the world has, well, been the world, and since they're in Hell they can't die,” Jeongguk starts telling. “But so many of them leave like I did. Coming to Earth is very tempting, especially when you've spent your entire existence in a place like Hell. It's normal to want to see more and do something else. Hell... well, it's not a pretty place.”

Taehyung hums, followed by a,  “I could only imagine.” There’s a pause then, with neither of them saying anything. “What if that happens, then? What if everyone left Hell?”

“That's when the, uh, birth of demons happens. Not an actual birth, but to call it somehow,” Jeongguk explains. “I assumed you've heard of the expression a deal with the devil, haven't you?”

“Of course, yeah,” Taehyung says with a nod.

“How about selling your soul to the devil?” Another nod. “That's what happens when you sell your soul to a demon. Your soul is trapped in hell for the rest of eternity, condemned to being a demon. And shit, you'd be surprised by how many people do stuff like that.” 

“Does it work for them?” Taehyung asks. Jeongguk raises an eyebrow at him. “Do they get what they want or is just a trick demons do to fuck with them?”

“If there is one single crack in the deal with them, a way for them to twist it around on you and end up ruining things, then they will,” Jeongguk says. “It's redundant to say because everyone should be aware of this, but sometimes people get desperate and... yeah. But never trust a demon, Taehyung. They will fuck with you.”

“And what about you?” Taehyung asks, lifting himself up on his forearm. He looks into Jeongguk's eyes, asks, “Can I trust you?”

One of the corners of Jeongguk's mouth tilts up in a teasing smile. “I don't know. Do you think I can?”

“I think you're a demon with very human tendencies,” Taehyung tells him. He makes a pause before adding, “And a very human heart.”

Jeongguk laughs at that, reaching to take Taehyung's hand in his own. Taehyung feels his heartbeat speed up, drumming in his ears as Jeongguk's fingers interlock with his own. Taehyung looks down at their joint hands, at Jeongguk's wide knuckles and his thin fingers. And then, he looks up just to find Jeongguk's eyes already on him.

“You know what?” Jeongguk asks. Taehyung lets out a hum, to which Jeongguk replies, “I think you might be right.” 

 

 

Just as promised, Taehyung does come up with a way for Jeongguk to show him how to fly without triggering Taehyung's fear of heights. The idea comes to him in a flash, and so when the sun sets on the following Saturday, Taehyung and Jeongguk start driving out of town.

The idea of flying all over Seoul, seeing the buildings and cars beneath them terrified Taehyung. But maybe flying over an open field won't be as bad, right?

They get there eventually, after grabbing something to eat on their way there. Jeongguk gets out of the car and stretches his limbs even if they haven't really been in the car for that long, and Taehyung stays inside for a moment to... prepare himself, he guesses. He goes over the guidance he established for himself: don't look down, hold on tight to Jeongguk, control your breathing, and once again, don't you dare look down. 

And only after going through all of those does Taehyung get out of the car and meet Jeongguk out on the field.

In all honesty, Taehyung has no idea where they are or who this field belongs to—he just drove until he found somewhere deserted enough. Taehyung hopes that since it's late into the night no one will see, and therefore no one will call them out for invading their property, but Jeongguk doesn't seem to care much. By the time Taehyung is out of the car and standing next to him, Jeongguk has already changed into his demon form, his wings spreading wide behind his back.

“You're always shirtless when you change into that form,” Taehyung observes, definitely not staring down at Jeongguk's chest and torso. Nope, not at all.

“I need to or my wings would rip the t-shirt,” Jeongguk replies, giving him an apologetic look. “You don't mind, do you?"

“Not at all. It's actually all very homoerotic,” Taehyung replies, making Jeongguk cackle. Taehyung stretches his arms then, making grabby hands at Jeongguk. “Come on then.”

“Wow. Don't even wanna see it before you try it?” Jeongguk asks, teasing. Despite that, he still takes one step closer to Taehyung, allowing him to curl his arms around his neck. “Hold on tight, okay?”

Taehyung does, gripping tightly at his shoulders as Jeongguk's own arms curl around his waist. Taehyung feels a knot of nervousness appear in his throat then, but oddly enough, it's mixed with... anticipation? Jeongguk's wings start moving, and once again Taehyung can't help but stare in awe. He sucks in a breath as their feet start lifting up off the ground, holding on tighter to Jeongguk.

“Not too high,” Taehyung reminds him, looking into Jeongguk's eyes. 

“I promise I won't,” Jeongguk says. “Look at me. Just me, alright?”

There is no way for Taehyung to describe what he feels when Jeongguk and he start getting higher and higher. He doesn't feel safe—there is nothing keeping him up, if not for his own hold on Jeongguk and Jeongguk's arms around his waist. They start moving forward, Taehyung feeling the breeze behind his back.

There’s a small forest behind them, so by looking at the trees behind Jeongguk, Taehyung can appreciate how high they’re getting. He can’t help but laugh a little, Jeongguk giving him a funny look when he does so.

“Like it?” Jeongguk asks.

Taehyung laughs again. “I just—this—” he starts, eyes focusing on the black feathers of Jeongguk’s wings. “This is unbelievable, Jeongguk.”

Jeongguk chuckles at that, his body vibrating from where he’s pressed right against Taehyung’s. Taehyung clings on closer, smiling a bit.

It’s not too long before they’re back on the ground, and even if Taehyung was enjoying it, he’s glad to have the ground under his feet again. He’s been sticking to his own rule of not looking down so far, and even if the lack of solid ground under him still gives him a certain feeling of vertigo, he hasn’t been feeling panicked. Jeongguk promised they wouldn’t go too high, either way, and Taehyung trusts him.

He trusts him so much, that less than five minutes they go up again. This time around, when they leave the ground, Taehyung sees how far away from the car they are, the vehicle being now a tiny dot in the distance. And then, after a short five minutes break, they go again.

He feels… euphoric. They’re up in the air again, and this time around, Taehyung gets brave and twists his head a bit, looking down at their feet. The grass looks so far away, causing Taehyung’s stomach to twist as he holds on tighter to Jeongguk’s shoulders.

“Don’t drop me!” he calls, Jeongguk erupting into easy laughter next to him.

“I wouldn’t dream of it, Tae.”

After around half an hour, Jeongguk and Taehyung collectively decide that Taehyung already has had enough strong emotions for one day. Jeongguk leaves Taehyung sitting on the hood of the car and then goes out flying once again, getting up so high that Taehyung feels his stomach turn at the sight. He can hear Jeongguk laugh in the distance, and for the next while he watches with a smile painted on his face as Jeongguk flies around, doing pirouettes.

Eventually, the night finds the two of them sitting side by side on the hood of the car, Taehyung feeling the feathers of Jeongguk’s wings tickling the back of his arms every once in a while. It’s comfortable and easy, despite the quietness. The sides of their thighs are touching as they sit side by side, and Taehyung feels the urge to reach out to where Jeongguk’s hand is resting on his lap and clutch it tightly in his own palm. Maybe get closer, let himself get a little lost in the warmth of Jeongguk’s body against his own once again.

“Did you like it?” Jeongguk asks eventually, breaking the silence between them. “Did you like flying?”

“Way more than I thought I would,” Taehyung replies to him, honest. “It’s oddly… exhilarating, freeing,”

“It’s a lot of fun. I missed it—in Seoul I had to be a lot more careful, keep it low. But here… well, I can have some fun with it,” Jeongguk tells him, giving him a crooked smile.

Taehyung can’t help but smile fondly. “I could see that,” he says. “It makes me happy to see you have fun like that. You’ve been smiling so wide the whole night, and I bet you didn’t even notice it yourself.”

Jeongguk laughs at that, shaking his head. They look at each other, Jeongguk replying, “Do you like to see me smile?”

Taehyung swallows down, his Adam’s apple bobbing as he does so. “I think I like it a lot, actually.”

Jeongguk’s eyes are still on his; big, brown and almost abrasive. Taehyung feels his heart rate pick up, but he doesn’t find it in himself to look away—he can’t. There is something so addictive about Jeongguk’s stare, something that sends shivers down his spine, makes goosebumps rise on his skin. Jeongguk’s eyes on him make him nervous but they also make him feel safe. It’s such a contradiction but to Taehyung makes perfect sense. Or at least, it does to his heart.

Just like it makes sense for him to lean in then, when they only have the quiet as a witness of what’s about to happen. Jeongguk looks at him, nervously licks his lips. The last thing that Taehyung sees before his eyes flutter closed are Jeongguk’s—so bright, bright, bright, brighter than the stars they see in the sky. Maybe it’s stupid of Taehyung to think this way, but he feels that the brightness of Jeongguk’s eyes would be enough to guide him home if he ever got lost.

The first touch of their lips, as chaste and brief as if it, is enough to make Taehyung feel like there’s a hurricane inside his chest. He feels more vertigo kissing Jeongguk than he did earlier with the flying, and that’s saying something. Taehyung’s fists clench on top of the hood of the car, closing around nothing.

They pull back right away, blinking their eyes open so they can take a look at each other. Taehyung feels something inside of him jump when he notices the way a grin slowly appears on Jeongguk’s handsome face, making Taehyung want to kiss him again.

And so, he does. The two of them lean in again, both at the same time. This time around, Jeongguk’s hand climbs up to Taehyung’s jaw and cups it softly, the two of them laughing a little against each other’s mouths.

“Good?” Jeongguk asks.

“Good,” Taehyung replies.

No other words are exchanged before Taehyung closes the space between them, connecting their lips for the second time tonight. And then a third, mixed in with more quiet laughter and Jeongguk’s soft words. And then a fourth. And by the time the kisses stop, Taehyung’s lips are red, and the L-word—hint: love—is tethering around his mind.

 

 

“Do you think I should get a job?” Jeongguk asks one night out of the blue.

Taehyung, whose feet are resting on top of Jeongguk’s, as the demon watches some TV, put his feet down to take a look at the other.

“What do you mean, get a job?” Taehyung asks him, arching one eyebrow.

Jeongguk shrugs, shifting a little so he can look at Taehyung. “I don’t know. The money Hoseok left for me is almost running out now, and I don’t want to make you pay for my stuff, especially when I’m already invading your space. It wouldn’t be fair,” Jeongguk insists. Taehyung rolls his eyes a little—they’ve gone over this already. Taehyung doesn’t mind, really.

“It’s not like you have to rush to get a job. I’m not struggling or anything,” Taehyung dismisses.

“But I plan to stay here for a long time. I can’t depend on your money always,” Jeongguk rebates. Taehyung doesn’t argue that—he has a point so he stays quiet. “And I get bored when I have nothing to do and you’re gone.”

“Aww,” Taehyung coos, sitting up with a wide, teasing smile on his face. Jeongguk doesn’t say anything, the tips of his ears going a bit red. “Does baby get lonely, huh?”

“I’m not a baby,” Jeongguk replies. Taehyung rolls his eyes but he still slides closer on the couch, seeking the comfort of Jeongguk’s body close to his own. “I think I should… consider doing something. Naturally, I don’t have any education, and I feel like it would be quite hard for me to enroll in a university course.”

“Yeah, it can be hard if you’re not used to studying,” Taehyung agrees. “I can help you look for possible jobs that you like if you want. The only problem we’re gonna have is that you don’t have any documentation.”

“I already talked to Hoseok about all that. I just have to give him a picture of me and he’ll contact a guy who’ll get me all that stuff I need,” Jeongguk comments, waving with his hand. “I don’t understand the need human governments have to have everyone identified and under control.”

“That’s very illegal of him,” Taehyung observes. Jeongguk shrugs his shoulders. “I think I’m better off not asking at all.”

“The less you know…” Jeongguk replies, laughing lightly. “You’ll help me, then?”

“I will, yeah,” Taehyung agrees, getting up to his feet. When Jeongguk gives him a curious look, Taehyung says, “Let me go get the laptop.”

Just like that, Taehyung ends up spending the rest of his evening browsing the internet with Jeongguk, trying to find a job that he could get with no more than a high school certification, and one he thinks would make him happy. While they do so, snuggled up on the couch together, Taehyung can’t help but feel a comfortable warmth settle in the pit of his stomach.

With this, with Jeongguk looking at job listings and planning a future here, Taehyung feels like Jeongguk’s presence on Earth, and therefore in his life, aims to be a bit more… permanent. Who could have told him, when he first picked up Jeongguk, that he would want him to stay so badly?

 

 

Ever since that first kiss they shared while sitting on the hood of the car, Taehyung and Jeongguk have kissed quite a lot. Sometimes it’s innocent kisses, pecks on the mouth before Taehyung leaves for work, as a farewell; sometimes it’s long kisses on the couch, when the movie they’re playing is not quite enough to keep the two of them interested, and kissing seems like a much more desirable option.

Jeongguk is a good kisser. His lips seem to work perfectly in sync with Taehyung’s, despite the fact that their mouths are still quite new to each other. And there’s also that thing he does with his tongue that makes Taehyung’s toes curl every single time. Or even the little bites that he always gives to Taehyung’s bottom lip, making him hiss and smile into his mouth.

Today, they’re in Taehyung’s bed. Jeongguk burst into the room when Taehyung was about to get in bed, startling him.

“What—?”

“You didn’t give me a goodnight kiss,” Jeongguk tells him. Taehyung’s surprised expression is slowly replaced by a pleased smile. “I want a kiss.”

And Taehyung isn’t one to deny Jeongguk, really. Taehyung let himself be pulled in for a kiss, his arms wrapping around Jeongguk’s neck so naturally. Jeongguk’s hands sit on Taehyung’s waist, and even before their lips really touch, Taehyung knows that one kiss is not going to be enough.

And he was right. Taehyung doesn’t know how long it’s been now—fifteen minutes? Maybe thirty. The point is that they’ve shared far more than one goodnight kiss by now, Taehyung lying on his back on the mattress with Jeongguk hovering over him. He’s holding himself up with one arm, the other touching Taehyung’s side, his hip, brushing the hair out of his face. They stop a few times, catching their breaths and looking at each other with sheepish smiles, but there’s always a kiss that comes after. And then another. And then another one.

Taehyung doesn’t think he’s ever felt as addicted to someone’s kisses as he does just now, with Jeongguk. His hands are buried in Jeongguk’s hair, pulling him impossibly closer. It’s embarrassing how riled up Taehyung feels, but if Jeongguk moved his thigh a bit further, then he would feel—that.

It’s not the first time they’ve been here. Not the first time they’ve kissed until their lips were red and slick with spit, both panting into each other’s mouths. It’s not the first time Taehyung has felt himself get hard from making out with Jeongguk, and he knows firsthand that it’s not the first time Jeongguk gets excited from it either.  

Taehyung never allows for it to go further than that, though. Maybe he’s embarrassed, or maybe he’s just scared that it might ruin the fragile balance that he and Jeongguk have found. Taehyung is scared that sex will ruin things between them. But fuck, with Jeongguk’s hands touching him, fingers lightly tickling down his sides, he just wants it so bad.

Should I give in?, he asks himself, body arching off the bed. And then, when Jeongguk licks into his mouth again and it sends a shiver down his spine, Taehyung jolts back.

“I—fuck,” Taehyung replies, pressing both of his palms against Jeongguk’s chest. He doesn’t push him away, but Jeongguk must get it and pulls back with a laugh. “Okay, that’s—that kiss is granted to give you a very good night.”

Jeongguk hums, flopping on the bed on his side. He’s looking at Taehyung, whose cheeks are getting a little red. He’s so glad Jeongguk never asks why he interrupts each and every one of their make out sessions so abruptly, because it’s embarrassing. I stopped because I was afraid I’d get too horny and it would ruin us. Hell, even just thinking about it makes Taehyung want to sigh. It sounds ridiculous.

“A very good night, indeed,” Jeongguk agrees, his hand reaching to give Taehyung’s hip a little squeeze. “One more before I go?”

And really, Taehyung is so… damn soft for him. He doesn’t let himself think twice about it—Taehyung leans forward and gives Jeongguk another kiss, this one far slower and more chaste. Taehyung pulls back then, a little frustrated and a bit horny, but he ignores that.

“I’ll get going now, then,” Jeongguk announces, starting to move to get off the bed.

Taehyung bites down on his bottom lip. The thought crosses his mind like a flash, and before he can dwell on it for too long, he’s saying, “Wait!” Jeongguk turns his head around, humming as his eyes meet Taehyung’s. “Would you maybe want to sleep with me in bed tonight?”

To be honest, it’s been some months since Jeongguk started crashing on his couch. Taehyung doesn’t understand how his back has been resistant enough to not scream at him to get a proper bed until now. The thought of sharing the bed has crossed his mind plenty of times—first, before he and Jeongguk were anything other than platonic, as an offering because he felt bad for leaving Jeongguk to sleep on the cheap couch. But after they started kissing and all that stuff, Taehyung has been thinking about it a lot.

It wasn’t until today that he really, really considered making an offer. And once seeing the way Jeongguk’s face lights up immediately after making it, Taehyung doesn’t regret saying what he said. If anything, what he does regret is not making the offer sooner.

“I would love to,” Jeongguk says, letting himself sit back on the mattress. “Are you sure?”

“I’m positive, yeah,” Taehyung says, nodding enthusiastically as to give his confirmation more emphasis. The happy grin on Jeongguk’s face reappears, making Taehyung feel his heart thumping in his chest. “Come on, get in here.”

The two of them settle in the double bed, Taehyung turning off the light and getting on his side. Taehyung is lying on his back, and so Taehyung takes that as his chance to get closer and hitch one of his legs over Taehyung’s body.

“I will let you know I’m a very clingy and cuddly sleeper,” Taehyung announces, inhaling deeply in the scent of Jeongguk’s shampoo. He didn’t like Taehyung’s strawberry scented one too much so he got his own. Luckily for Jeongguk, Taehyung likes the smell a lot.

“I know that,” Jeongguk tells him, allowing for Taehyung to wrap one arm around his waist, too. “I’ve seen you nap. Hell, you’ve napped on me.”

Taehyung laughs at that, remembering the instance. It happened a mere two weeks ago, when Taehyung started feeling weary during one of their kissing sessions until he finally dozed off on Jeongguk. At first, Jeongguk was a bit offended Taehyung fell asleep while kissing him. In the end, Taehyung managed to convince him that him feeling sleepy and lethargic around him was a good thing. It meant he was comfortable around him in a way.

“You’re night,” Taehyung replies, craning his neck to press a noisy, wet kiss to Jeongguk’s cheek. “Goodnight, Gukkie.”

Jeongguk shifts a little closer, getting himself a little comfortable. “Goodnight, Tae.”

 

 

Living together means that there are a lot of opportunities for Taehyung and Jeongguk to spend time together, which lately, and ever since that one night away from Seoul, has been translating to a lot of time for them to kiss. Sometimes, especially on weekends where Taehyung has no work to worry about, the two of them can spend hours and hours in bed just kissing, enjoying each other’s company without a care or second thought about the rest of the world. Usually, when that happens, it’s only either of their tummies rumbling with hunger that snaps them out of their kiss-induced daze.

Today is one of these days. It’s Saturday, and after a quick lunch, Taehyung and Jeongguk went to bed with the initial intention to have a little nap. One thing led to the other, one sweet kiss brought on another, and now they’re not really… well, napping. Taehyung is lying on his back, and half-sprawled on top of him is Jeongguk. And they for sure aren’t sleeping.

Taehyung’s long fingers are tangled in Jeongguk’s hair now, although they occasionally wander down to his shoulders, fingernails lightly scratching on the skin of his nape. When he gets a little more daring, he plays with Jeongguk’s pierced ears, making the demon let out soft, content noises right into Taehyung’s mouth. As for Jeongguk, he doesn’t get any less handsy than Taehyung does: Taehyung loves his touch, loves the way his hands feel against his sides, then travelling down to his hip, his waist, his thighs.

Taehyung has been in situations like this before—in make outs that get a little more heated, when kisses turn deep, wet, hot. When Jeongguk uses his hand to spread his thighs further, body rocking against his lightly, Taehyung feels a more than familiar heat coil in his stomach, gasping a little and unable to not grip at Jeongguk’s hair. He’s been here before, yeah. So he’s not nervous. But there’s still this little exciting feeling in his stomach because it’s Jeongguk.

So he gets a little more daring, untangling his arms from around Jeongguk’s neck and taking them down to his middle. Jeongguk’s lips keep hungrily kissing his, only really showing some reaction to Taehyung’s touch when his hands slip under Jeongguk’s t-shirt. He whispers, “Tae,” and fuck, there’s something so hot about the way his name sounds on Jeongguk’s lips right now.

“Is this good?” Taehyung asks, the pads of his fingers gently touching the expanse of Jeongguk’s back. Jeongguk nods, lips brushing against Taehyung’s.

“Yes, fuck. Keep touching,” he says, before finally pressing their lips into another kiss, this one maybe with a little more intent to it. Don’t get Taehyung wrong—Jeongguk always kisses like it’s the last time he will do so, lips prying Taehyung’s open with enthusiasm and skill. It makes Taehyung’s knees feel weak, because even if he has kissed quite a handful of people, he’s never found someone who makes him feel as wanted as Jeongguk. This time is… well, it’s different. Every time they’ve kissed so far, they’ve done so with the intention of it ending in just that, kisses. Be it soft or chaste, or proper making out sessions. This time, however, Taehyung thinks he can tell it’s different.

Taehyung thinks he can tell Jeongguk wants to fuck.

And, of course, he wants it, too. Jeongguk nibbles at his lower lip, asking for Taehyung to part his lips further, and Taehyung complies. Jeongguk’s tongue invades his mouth then, warm and hot, and Taehyung feels himself melt a little under the kiss. His body arches off the bed, seeking friction against Jeongguk’s rocking hips. When he gets it, Jeongguk’s crotch rubbing up against his, Taehyung can’t help but swear under his breath.

“Fuck,” he mutters, as Jeongguk kisses the corner of his mouth.

He slips his hands further up Jeongguk’s back, the skin soft under his palms. The t-shirt keeps getting in the way, so in a moment of boldness Taehyung grabs the hem of the garment and lifts it over Jeongguk’s head, the kiss breaking momentarily as he completely removes it from Jeongguk’s body.

He can’t help but eat Jeongguk up a little with his eyes, feeling the arousal already bubbling in his stomach increase even more. His eyes linger on his bare skin for a second too long, before their eyes meet again and he finds Jeongguk looking at him with a raised eyebrow, teasing. Even before the words arrive, Taehyung already knows what’s coming.

“Like what you see?” Jeongguk asks.

“Shut up,” Taehyung shushes, surging forward for another kiss.

After that, the two of them seem more impatient, urgent. Jeongguk wastes no time getting rid of Taehyung’s worn-out jumper, kissing him with renewed vigor after that. Jeongguk’s torso feels scorching hot against Taehyung’s, the skin on skin contact making Taehyung feel dizzy. He can’t hold back a moan when Jeongguk’s thick thigh ventures in between his legs then, hesitantly pressing against his erection. 

“Look at you,” Jeongguk murmurs, retreating a little so he can give Taehyung a good look. “Look how fucking pretty and wrecked you are already.”

Taehyung doesn’t know for sure what he looks like, but he’s sure he’s a reflection of Jeongguk’s own state now. Lips raw and red from all the kissing, hair disheveled and sticking out in a million different directions, cheeks flushed. Taehyung’s entire body feels like he’s on fire, likely to explode if Jeongguk doesn’t take care of him soon. And the thigh pressed against his hardening cock, now a bit more firmly, does nothing but contribute to that feeling.

Taehyung reaches up, curling his hand around the back of Jeongguk’s neck and bringing him down for another kiss. “Want you,” he whispers, the words feeling lewd and charged with desire as Taehyung almost spits it against Jeongguk’s lips. “I want you so, so bad.”

Their lips crash then, with a little more force than the two of them are used to when it comes to kisses shared between them. Taehyung moans into it when Jeongguk presses his thigh against him, teasing him. When that happens, Taehyung can’t stop himself from bucking his hips against it, out of instinct. And it feels so good, even if he’s still fully clothed down there and it’s just Jeongguk’s leg.

And holy fuck, he’s right there humping Jeongguk’s fucking leg.

His hands tangle in Jeongguk’s long curls, fists closing and eyes squeezing shut. Jeongguk rests their foreheads together as a curse falls from Taehyung’s lip, starting to get the stimulation that he wants so badly. When Jeongguk retreats his thigh a little Taehyung is about to complain, but then he feels hands going to the waistband of his sweats. He lets Jeongguk yank them down with eager hands, along with his stupid underwear. Taehyung’s cock springs free then, hard and flushed and leaking at the tip.

“You too,” Taehyung urges him then, before Jeongguk can get to kiss him again. Jeongguk doesn’t move, still, so Taehyung takes matters into his own hands and hooks his thumb and index into Jeongguk’s waistband. “I want to see how hard you are for me.”

His mouth waters a little at the sight when he gets rid of all the clothes Jeongguk had left, taking in Jeongguk’s cock standing proud and hard against his lower abdomen. It looks so thick, just enough to make him crave it inside him, making him feel good. Taehyung swallows down.

Before he has the chance to say anything, Jeongguk is surging forward and pressing another kiss against the corner of his mouth. Only this time he starts going down a little, wet kisses starting a path first to his jaw, then his neck, then his clavicle. Taehyung’s can’t keep down a moan when Jeongguk starts trailing down wet kisses to the expanse of his chest, one hand going up to play with a small, brown nipple. Taehyung hisses when that happens, hips involuntarily bucking up when Jeongguk gets his mouth over the other sensitive bud.

“Fuck, Jeongguk,” Taehyung whines, throwing his head back when Jeongguk grazes his teeth over the nipple. Taehyung feels his dick twitch at that, hard and heavy on top of his tummy. “God.”

“No, not him,” Jeongguk says then, looking up at him with a teasing smile on his face. For as long as they’ve lived together, Taehyung has been trying to keep expressions such as ‘oh my God’ out of his vocabulary, but sometimes he slips. Jeongguk never gets angry or uncomfortable; he just gives Taehyung a devious look, like just now, and makes some smart-ass comment. “He’s not gonna be here to see you get your ass railed.”

The words have Taehyung letting out a loud moan, probably because of how dirty they are; it definitely doesn’t help that Jeongguk’s working his mouth on Taehyung’s nipple with enthusiasm, the pads of his fingers teasing the other one. Taehyung can’t help but thrust his hips up a little, his cock rubbing against Jeongguk’s abdomen, and it feels good. So good that when Jeongguk pulls back a little in order to keep kissing down Taehyung’s body, with friction is lost, Taehyung lets out a sound in protest.

“No complaining,” Jeongguk says, nipping with his teeth at the skin of Taehyung’s belly. “You’re gonna like this far more. I swear.”

Taehyung holds on to Jeongguk’s words, especially as the boy’s mouth keeps travelling down his body and his intentions start becoming a little clearer. Taehyung’s stomach is practically bubbling with excitement when Jeongguk’s mouth gets to his navel, sucking and lightly biting at the skin. It’s then that, without any warning that could prepare Taehyung for the feeling, Jeongguk reaches up and wraps his fingers around his cock.

“Oh, fuck,” Taehyung says, melting under the feeling Jeongguk’s palm where he needs him the most. Jeongguk’s mouth lets go of Taehyung’s lower abdomen then, pulling back so he can meet Taehyung’s eyes. “Jeongguk.”

“Taehyung,” Jeongguk calls, eyes meeting Jeongguk’s as he slowly starts to pump his cock. Taehyung clenches his jaw, holding back the moans that threaten to slip past his lips. “I’m gonna suck your cock.”

There’s something about how nonchalantly and even casually he announces it. It makes Taehyung feel a wave of arousal wash over him, his dick throbbing in Jeongguk’s hold. Of course, Jeongguk feels the way it palpitates against his palm. He smirks at it, satisfied.

“Come on,” Taehyung encourages, voice low. “Do it, then. Suck me off.”

Jeongguk doesn’t waste any time after that, leaning forward and guiding the head of Taehyung’s cock to his lips with the hand wrapped around it. Taehyung’s throat tightens when he feels Jeongguk’s swollen, pillowy lips against him. And then, Jeongguk’s lips part and his tongue darts out to lick at Taehyung’s cock, and he swears he feels himself die.

His tongue is pressed flat against the underside of Taehyung’s dick, taking a bold lick. His eyes are on Taehyung’s when he goes again, this time licking all the way down from the base to the tip, tongue trailing the thick vein on the underside.

“Fuck, Jeongguk,” Taehyung calls, watching as his hands close around the bedsheets of their now shared bared. Jeongguk’s lips wrap around the tip then, finally properly wrapping around him. “I—that’s it, yes.”

If Jeongguk is an enthusiastic kisser, he’s even more fervent when it comes to blowjobs. There is not one apex of shyness as he starts bobbing his head up and down on Taehyung’s cock, taking a bit more inside his mouth every time he goes down. He hollows his cheeks around it and wraps his hand around whatever he can’t fit in, tongue playing with the tip. And God, Taehyung feels like he’s in fucking heaven right now.

His toes start to curl as the head of his cock hits the back of Jeongguk’s throat, feeling an orgasm start to build up. His grip on the bed sheets tightens, muscles of his thighs tensing up at each side of Jeongguk’s head. Taehyung has his eyes squeezed shut, but he can perfectly envision the sight of Jeongguk going down on him, head of dark thick hair buried between his legs. And then, just when he feels like he could come, Jeongguk abruptly pulls back.

“What—?” he starts, but Jeongguk interrupts.

“You have that thing, don’t you?” he says. Taehyung frowns, watching as Jeongguk gestures with his hands before he resumes talking. “Like—fuck, I forgot the name. The thing that makes sex easier.”

“The thing that makes sex easier?” Taehyung repeats in question, unable to stop himself from wrinkling his nose at the description. But far from being offended, Jeongguk nods, earnest. “Gukkie, I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“For anal sex,” Jeongguk says then, realization falling upon Taehyung. Jeongguk’s gesture, almost mimicking the action of pouring something out of a bottle, starts to make sense. “Fuck, I don’t remember the name.”

“Lube?” Taehyung offers.

“Yes!” Jeongguk says, snapping his fingers. “Do you have lube?”

“I do—fuck, I do, yeah,” Taehyung starts, scrambling to his knees and crawling to the bedside table. He gets a small tube of lube, one that hasn't been used for months since doing this kind of stuff with Jeongguk there felt a bit, uh, violating. He considers for a moment before grabbing a condom as well. “Here. You don’t use these in Hell?”

“We have other stuff. Lube is a human invention,” Jeongguk comments, getting the tube in his hand and inspecting it, eyes narrowing a bit. His attention then drifts to the small, red packet. “So are condoms.”

“You better test them out then,” Taehyung says, getting back to his position from earlier after placing some pillows behind himself. He’s more laid down now, so when he parts his legs he knows Jeongguk can see—well, everything there is for him to see. “Are you gonna use them on me?”

And Jeongguk seems almost entranced then, like the script of a bad porno where the lead seems hypnotized at the sight of the other’s dick. But as Jeongguk gets to him, not looking away once and with the lube still in his hand, Taehyung thinks that if it’s Jeongguk doing it, then he’s into it. Very into it.

He’s taken by surprise when Jeongguk’s mouth returns to his cock, his tongue playing with the tip as a lubed up finger slides into Taehyung. Taehyung feels almost overwhelmed by the pleasure that comes crashing in waves—Jeongguk’s fingers inside of him, the way that his mouth is still working on his cock. It all builds up, making him a writhing mess on the mattress as Jeongguk makes him feel good.

And fuck, Jeongguk does him so well. He seems to be able to know everything about his body, even if it’s only the first time that they’re intimate like this. He looks so fucking sinful as he looks up at Taehyung, touching him and pushing every button that unravels something inside of Taehyung. His legs clamp around Jeongguk, especially when three of his fingers brush against his prostate.

Now Taehyung really, really feels like he can’t wait anymore.

“Jeongguk, fuck—enough,” he says in a strangled voice, making Jeongguk’s eyes look at him. “I want—I want you to fuck me.”

“Fuck—okay,” Jeongguk says, surging forward and kissing Taehyung’s lips. Taehyung frantically kisses back, feeling Jeongguk’s lubed up fingers touch his body. “I want—can you put it on?”

“Yes, fuck,” Taehyung replies, blindly searching for the condom as he lets Jeongguk kiss him once again. When he finds it he pulls back a little, wasting no time to rip the packet open. “Come here. Let me put it on you.”

Jeongguk’s eyes follow closely as Taehyung pinches the tip of the condom and slides it over his cock, eliciting a soft moan from the demon. Jeongguk is sitting on his ass, and so Taehyung wastes no time pressing a hand firmly against his chest and pushing, making him lie down on his back.

“I’m going to ride you,” he announces, getting one thigh over Jeongguk and straddling him. Jeongguk looks at him from beneath him, reaching for one of the pillows on the bed and placing it under his head. “Gonna make you feel as good as you made me feel just now.”

Jeongguk huffs out a laugh at that, his hand going to Taehyung’s bare thigh and gripping tightly at the flesh. Taehyung fucking loves the feeling. “Come on then. Sit on my cock.”

Taehyung reaches behind himself with one hand then, finding Jeongguk’s cock and wrapping his slender fingers around it. He can’t resist the temptation to give it a couple of languid, lazy pumps, that are still enough to make Jeongguk grunt lightly. He guides it then to his ass, entrance still slippery from the copious amounts of lube Jeongguk used to fingerfuck him just before.

“Ready?” Taehyung asks, his other hand cupping Jeongguk’s jaw. He’s on his knees, towering over him, but he still whispers the words right against his mouth.

“Ready.”

And with that, Taehyung sinks down on Jeongguk’s cock.

Thanks to the lube and how thorough Jeongguk was with the fingering now, the slide is easy and comfortable for Taehyung. His lips fall open into a silent moan as inch after inch of Jeongguk slides into him, slowly. By the time he’s all the way in and Taehyung’s sitting on top of him, Taehyung feels so deliciously stretched out he thinks he could tear up. Jeongguk’s mouth incessantly kisses at his neck, hot and wet.

“So good,” Taehyung mutters, not giving himself a moment to adjust before he starts lifting himself up. His hands move to Jeongguk’s shoulders, fingernails scraping and leaving red marks on their wake. “Oh my—Jeongguk.”

Jeongguk’s hands go straight to his waist then, and Taehyung loves it. He loves the way that Jeongguk tries to lift him up, then bring him down onto his cock; he feels so fucking full, so fucking euphoric that all he wants is to let himself go and bounce on Jeongguk’s cock like crazy. He doesn’t build a pace, per se; he doesn’t find himself to go slow or to keep a rhythm, it’s messy and erratic and sloppy from the start. It’s a reflection of all the months of wanting, of silently appreciating how damn fucking hot Jeongguk was without ever doing anything about it. And now, at last, Taehyung has his fat dick inside him, splitting him open and making him feel full. It tastes like victory to him.

“Such a tight, little ass,” Jeongguk tells him, the words making Taehyung moan brokenly. He ducks his head now, open mouth searching for Jeongguk’s. “You feel so fucking good around me.”

“Yeah?” Taehyung asks, lips brushing against Jeongguk’s as he speaks. “Do you like how it feels? How fucking tight and good it is around you?” he asks. Jeongguk grunts, his hands going down to Taehyung’s ass cheeks and spreading them apart as he takes his cock. It makes Taehyung moan as he throws his head back, needy. “Fuck it, Jeongguk. Fuck my ass with your big, big cock.”

The words make something snap inside of Jeongguk, who then starts thrusting his own hips up to meet the roll of Taehyung’s hips. His eyes squeeze shut, all the way Jeongguk sucks dark marks on his neck and his cock brushed against the other’s abdomen, staining his skin with all of his pre-come.

And it’s so fucking dirty, especially when Taehyung tangles his hand on Jeongguk’s hair and brings their lips together into a kiss, sloppy and wet. He realizes then that he’s fucking drooling, needy and so worked up over the feeling of Jeongguk in him. Taehyung’s thighs are starting to ache now from all the bouncing on Jeongguk’s cock, burning deliciously as his body starts feeling a little too heavy.

It’s almost as if Jeongguk was reading his mind, really. He wraps one arm around Taehyung’s waist in that moment and, after bringing their chests flush against each other, flips them around. Taehyung lets out a surprised noise when he finds himself on his back, legs wrapped around Jeongguk’s hips. He looks up at the other, who is grinning down at him with a mischievous glint in his eyes.

“I’m gonna fuck you like I want to right now,” he says, pulling back a little. He slides off Taehyung, making him whine in protest. “Legs on my shoulders.”

Taehyung’s cheeks burn bright at the request, imagining how fucking exposed he’s going to look if he adopts that position, all spread out for Jeongguk. He obliges despite that, or precisely because of that. His legs go to Jeongguk’s shoulders, who kisses the inside of one of his calves tenderly before he leans forward, hand tenderly wrapped around his ankle. When Jeongguk gets slightly closer he forces Taehyung’s thighs to bent, the stretch for some reason turning him on even more.

“Fucking stunning, Tae,” Jeongguk starts babbling, making Taehyung moan as he lolls his head back against the mattress. “You look so fucking amazing like this. Needy and fucked out for me.”

“Jeongguk,” Taehyung breathes out as Jeongguk resumes his thrusts. Like this, he can feel Jeongguk deeper inside him than before, all the way in. Taehyung’s toes curl, one of his arms moving so he can wrap tightly around Jeongguk’s forearm. “Oh, I—fuck, keep going.”

“Not gonna stop,” Jeongguk tells him, delivering sharp and pointed thrusts that make Taehyung grunt, unable to keep his eyes open. “Not gonna stop until you’re coming all over yourself, Tae. Until all you can think of when you close your eyes is the feeling of my cock fucking into you.”

The words are so dirty that they have Taehyung letting out another pitiful sound, but by this point he’s far too gone to care about that. Jeongguk’s cock is fucking into him so fucking well, making pleasure jolt down Taehyung’s spine as he arches on the mattress.

“Oh—right there,” he blurts out, biting down on his bottom lip to quiet himself down when Jeongguk’s cock thrusts right into his sweet spot. It makes him clench uncontrollably, his already incoming orgasm approaching dangerously. His hand tightens its hold around Jeongguk’s wrist, the other one gripping at the bedsheets as he squirms. “Fuck. Gonna—”

His own broken moans interrupt him, sentence unfinished as the two of them get lost in a sea of cries of the other’s name. It’s Jeongguk who ducks down and catches Taehyung’s lips in a frantic kiss, all the while a hand ventures between their bodies. Taehyung lets out a shaky breath when he feels Jeongguk’s hand around his cock once again, jerking him off erratically as he whispers encouraging words against his mouth.

“Come for me, baby,” he says, probably being able to sense how close Taehyung is because of how he is clenching around him. Jeongguk’s hips snap particularly hard, the slap of their skin resonating loud in the room, and Taehyung feels his self-control slipping away. Fuck, he feels himself slipping away. “So fucking beautiful.”

It’s like that, with Jeongguk’s cock still fucking deep into him, that Taehyung comes. White come shoots out of his hard, throbbing cock and stains his own stomach, some falling on the planes of Jeongguk’s abdomen too. As he does so, a string of low curses fall from his lips, punctuated by Jeongguk’s name breathed out shakily. Taehyung’s eyes flutter closed when Jeongguk keeps fucking into him, making him feel so damn oversensitive.

It’s not too long after that when Jeongguk comes. He ruts his hips deep into Taehyung a couple more times before he comes, moaning Taehyung’s name so loudly it makes Taehyung’s stomach twist in the best kind of way. Jeongguk spills inside the condom, and only then does Taehyung realize how badly he wishes he could feel his hot come inside him, filling him up. Maybe next time, he tells himself, because he knows there will be another. He knows that now they’ve both had a taste of each other like that, this will happen again.

Jeongguk thrusts into him languidly, fucking him through both their orgasms as they share a lazy kiss, one that Taehyung moans into. He’s feeling too fucked out and oversensitive, so it’s only a couple of seconds until Jeongguk starts pulling back, letting himself fall to his side.

“Let me get this off you,” Taehyung murmurs, reaching forward and starting to take the condom off Jeongguk’s cock. He flinches a little, probably sensitive, but allows Taehyung to remove the latex from him and then tie it, leaving it on top of the bedside table until he can be bothered taking it to the bin. “Fuck, Jeongguk…”

It’s easy for them to tangle into each other’s bodies after that, especially with how affectionate they are used to being with each other. They’re still covered with come, but Taehyung can’t bring himself to care too much as he curls around Jeongguk’s body, tangling their legs together. He tucks his head in Jeongguk’s neck, which is covered with a thick sweat of layer. It smells like sex—they do, the room does. Taehyung should probably find it disgusting, but instead he thinks it’s rather… comforting, in an odd and maybe even twisted way. So comforting that it’s not too long before he starts to drift off to sleep, teetering on the edge of the awake and asleep world.

“So…” Jeongguk asks after a while, catching a very sleepy Taehyung’s attention.

“So?” Taehyung asks upon Jeongguk’s silence.

“Is sex with a demon better than with humans?” Jeongguk asks then, sounding way too serious for a question like this.

Taehyung stays quiet for a moment, turning a little to give Jeongguk a pointed look. And then, once it finally clicks what Jeongguk just asked, Taehyung starts laughing.

“Jeongguk, you have a human body,” Taehyung points out, a bit intelligible with sleepy laughter. “It’s virtually the same.”

“But I’ve had hundreds of years of training, on top of that. It should make me a bitter better, don’t you think?” he asks, Taehyung chuckling again. At this point, Taehyung can tell by his tone that he’s just messing around. “Be serious. Is it better or not?”

Maybe Jeongguk is a bit of a fool, a bit of a clown. But he makes Taehyung laugh harder than anyone else, so he thinks he can get on board with some nonsense for that. He might be a fool, but you know what? He’s Taehyung’s fool. And Taehyung will keep it that way.

 

 

“What’s gotten into you lately?” his co-worker, Seolhyun, asks him one day.

Seolhyun is another instructor for the kids—she and Taehyung have classes at the same time, each one of them in one of the lanes at the border of the pool. Every evening, when courses are done, the two of them stay behind to clean the pool from all the equipment the kids used that day, as well as other possible objects someone might have dropped while swimming. There’s always some jewelry stuck at the bottom, and sometimes, even glasses that the owners didn’t bother to pick up.

“What do you mean what’s gotten into me?” Taehyung asks, raising his eyes from the bottom of the pool to take a look at her. She raises one eyebrow, giving Taehyung a skeptical look as she runs a hand through her black, long hair.

“You look so happy lately. Like—you’re always smiling and humming or singing some tune. Sometimes I feel like you’re just gonna start skipping around the pool,” she tells him, giving him a teasing look. “Are you in love, Kim Taehyung?”

Taehyung chokes up a little at that, finding himself speechless for a moment. “Where’s this coming from?” he asks, trying his best to have a tamed reaction. The opposite would be a huge giveaway. “You’ve watched far too many dramas if you think that’s how people act when they’re in love.”

“I’m just saying you look happier these days,” she replies, rolling her eyes fondly. Taehyung huffs out a laugh. “Am I right?”

Taehyung offers her a smile, nodding a little. “I’ve been feeling really good lately, yeah,” he admits in the end.

Seolhyun smiles then, looking satisfied with herself and her observation skills. “Thought so,” she replies, dipping her net in the pool again to catch a green foam tube that was floating away from her.

Taehyung laughs again, but he doesn’t say anything else. Instead, he reflects on Seolhyun’s words.

Of course, Taehyung was very much aware that he had been feeling happier lately. He has always enjoyed his life, don’t get him wrong, but these days it seems as if there is a smile permanently painted on his face. He feels so stupidly euphoric all the time.

And he knows Jeongguk has a lot to do with that. Jeongguk, whom he found out of pure luck but who has turned into a fundamental piece of his life in a way. Once again, the word and the possibility start to dance around Taehyung’s mind, making him wonder.

Could it be that he’s falling in love?

 

 

The first supernatural creature to step into Taehyung’s apartment, to his knowledge, was Jeongguk. The second came only a day after that, and it was Hoseok, who has since dropped by on a number of occasions. After that, no other non-human has stepped inside his place, at least not that Taehyung knew about. That changes on a Thursday evening.

Taehyung makes his way back from work like he does any other night, eager to get back home and see Jeongguk. These days, getting back to the apartment seems much more exciting than it did before. As he drives back, Taehyung wonders in the back of his mind if Jeongguk maybe has cooked today, or if maybe he has walked down to the store and bought the cake that Taehyung likes. He’s got a craving for it, one he induced by making himself think about it.

When he gets back to the apartment, though, he doesn’t find a home-cooked meal. He doesn’t find cake, either. What he finds is Jeongguk standing in the middle of the living room, talking to a guy who Taehyung doesn’t recognize.

Taehyung is good with faces, and he’s positive he’s never seen this guy before in his entire life. His hair is black—and looks impossibly silky, holy fuck—and he’s a bit taller than Jeongguk, and therefore, taller than Taehyung himself, too. His shoulders are wide, and Taehyung thinks that, objectively, he has one of the most attractive faces he’s seen in his life.

“Oh—sorry,” he says as he barges into the apartment, interrupting his call of Jeongguk’s name. He shouldn’t be apologizing as he has just walked into his own apartment, but he’s been taken off guard by the presence of this guy. “Am I interrupting something?”

“Seokjin was just leaving,” Jeongguk says, tilting his head to the right. The environment and overall atmosphere of the conversation doesn’t seem hostile in the slightest, but that is very clearly an invitation for this Seokjin to leave.

“Absolutely no way,” the guy replies, his response making Taehyung’s eyebrows raise. “I’m here to take you back to where you belong, Jeongguk. And I won’t leave until I make sure that’s where you are.”

“Wait a minute—what?” Taehyung says then, interrupting. He drops his bag on the couch, taking a few steps closer to the two of them. “What’s this about? Who are you?”

“A pain in my ass,” Jeongguk whines.

At the same time, the guy says, “I’m Seokjin. I need to make sure Jeongguk returns home.”

Taehyung frowns upon hearing the word home. This is Jeongguk’s home now. And even before—Hell was never his home. Taehyung knows that Jeongguk has been there for hundreds of years, but that doesn’t make it his home. A soul like his never belonged in Hell in the first place. Jeongguk never felt at home back there, and so Taehyung won’t allow for him to go back.

“I’m gonna have to ask you to leave my apartment,” Taehyung says then, giving Seokjin a pointed look.

Seokjin gives Taehyung a blank stare, then returns his eyes to Jeongguk. He seems utterly in disbelief of what’s going on, almost as if he expected Jeongguk to just agree to get back upon being asked. Maybe that’s due to a big leap of faith, maybe to now knowing Jeongguk and his stubborn nature too well. Whichever it might be, things haven’t gone his way.

Taehyung hears a sigh, and then there’s an explosion of light. He has to turn his head around, eyes closing to protect themselves from the intense light. It’s only a few seconds later that he can bring himself to look ahead again and blinks his eyes open.

And, well—what he sees then knocks the air straight out of his lungs.

At this point in his life, Taehyung has very recently accepted the existence of demons. As crazy as it sounds, he has seen them in real—he shares his apartment with one, even. He has seen Jeongguk in his demon form enough for him to believe in them. If he didn’t, he would be in deep denial, after all.

Logically, Taehyung should have assumed that if demons exist, so do angels. Jeongguk has mentioned them before—has said that things and the religions followed on Earth are not exactly how things work in reality, but that maybe it’s too complex to make humans understand. Despite that, there are some things that they got right. Demons are one. And, judging by the fact that there’s a guy dressed in all white and with feathery wings attached to his back, angels must be, too.

“Care to explain why there’s a human who is so fiercely protective of you and your stay on Earth, Jeongguk?” Seokjin asks.

Taehyung knows he’s talking about him, and he should probably say something on behalf of himself. He’s never been a fan of people talking about him as if he was not in the room when he is literally right there, but he’s too in shock to say anything. Despite knowing they existed, that doesn’t make it any less shocking for Taehyung to see an angel in the flesh for the first time. Seokjin’s wings spread big and imposing behind his back, even bigger than Jeongguk’s. There seems to be a certain glisten emanating from him—not enough to hurt his eyes like the explosion from before, but Taehyung can see him shine. And it’s blowing his fucking mind.

“Care to explain why there’s a fucking angel asking you to go back to the pits of Hell in my living room, Jeongguk?” Taehyung asks, forcing himself out of his shock.

Jeongguk sighs. He opens his mouth, then closes it again without saying anything. In the end, his lips part again, and he says, “Seokjin found me. I… I was careless, and he found out where I am.”

“And now I’m here to return him to where he should have been all along,” Seokjin says. Taehyung scowls. “Don’t give me that look. It’s my duty to protect humanity. Demons aren’t made to mingle around Earth with humans. They are meant to be in—”

“In Hell, in Hell, yeah,” Taehyung completes for him. “On behalf of the human race, I’m really grateful for the concern and the wish to protect us, but I can promise you Jeongguk is in no way a danger to me or to any other human. The worst thing he’s done since getting here was almost burning my apartment down while baking cookies, and it was an honest accident.”

Jeongguk cracks up at the mention of the accident, Seokjin looking at him with an inquiring, raised eyebrow. Jeongguk shrugs, giving him a funny look.

“I’m aware that Jeongguk isn’t by any means the worst creature to ever escape Hell,” Seokjin says, his eyes going back to Taehyung. “And I also believe his intentions coming here were honest, and not to cause trouble like others have before, but it’s my duty to make sure he comes back. That’s how things should be.”

“Please, Seokjin,” Jeongguk implores, then. Taehyung rarely has seen Jeongguk beg—for kisses, mostly. And Taehyung doesn’t think either situations are anything alike. “I can’t go back there. It’s been too long and—I hate it. In the months that I’ve been here I’ve been happier than in the hundreds of years that I lived there. And Taehyung is telling you: I’m being good, I’m not harming anyone. Please.”

“It’s not fair for you to do this,” Seokjin complains. “You know I have a mission to do.”

“And it’s not fair for you to ask me to leave when I finally have everything that I want,” Jeongguk replies, not missing a beat. His brows are slightly furrowed, eyes widened as he speaks. “Can’t you—I know it’s a big favor, but can’t you just… lie? Say you never found me?” Seokjin stays quiet, giving Jeongguk a reluctant look. “Please, Seokjin.”

It’s clear on Seokjin’s face the conflict that he is going through. He clicks his tongue, looks away from Jeongguk and eyes Taehyung once again. His eyes go in between Taehyung and Jeongguk for a couple of moments, before he settles on Jeongguk once again.

“Why should I?” Seokjin asks.

“Because I know you have a good heart. And you know I have a good heart, too,” Jeongguk insists. “I wish I remembered what prompted me to make a deal with a demon all those years ago—I wish I did, really. It was a mistake. But now I have a chance to redeem that and to finally live… how I want to, with who I want to.” His eyes go to Taehyung as he says that, gaze travelling back to Seokjin soon. “This is my life now, Seokjin. I’m building a life for myself here. I have friends, I have a boyfriend, I’m looking for a job. Please, don’t take that chance to live away from me. I don’t want to go back there.”

Seokjin sighs then, his hand going to the back of his head and scratching there. Taehyung stares at him quiet, with a knot in his throat. Everything, whether Jeongguk can stay with him or not, depends on what he says now. God, Taehyung feels like he’s going to be sick.

“Fine.” Taehyung perks up when he hears that. “Fine. I’ll let it slide. I’ll pretend like I never saw you here.”

“Wait, really?” Jeongguk asks, a smile spreading across his face. He looks so terribly surprised it makes Taehyung’s heart ache—he really accepted he had to leave. But he also looks euphoric, terribly happy as he pulls Seokjin into a tight hug after the angel hums affirmatively. “Thank you so much, Seokjin. Thank you so, so much. I owe you.”

“Repay me by not causing any trouble. If you get caught, odds are I will get caught, too,” Seokjin tells him, pulling back a little to give Jeongguk a look of warning.

“I promise I’ll behave. I won’t cause any trouble,” Jeongguk replies, nodding a lot. Almost frantically, Taehyung would even say. “And, you know—if you ever wanted some company or friends you can meet up with me and Hoseok. I bet you get lonely sometimes.”

Seokjin squints at Jeongguk. “Hoseok?” Jeongguk’s eyes widen then, realizing he’s let that slipped. “Are you asking me to hang out with not one, but with two demons? As an angel and protector of this realm?” 

“It’s just—that’s old protocol, Seokjin. Nobody cares about that anymore. No one important needs to know, anyway,” Jeongguk insists, earning himself a skeptical look from Seokjin. “You’ll spare Hoseok too, won’t you?”

“I’m just going to leave here and pretend like none of this ever happened. For my sanity and my faith in my own ability to do my job,” Seokjin says, making both Taehyung and Jeongguk crack a smile. “It was nice seeing you again, even if you are the pain in my ass.” Jeongguk laughs at that, loudly. Looking at Taehyung, Seokjin adds, “It was nice meeting you, too. Promise me you’ll keep an eye on him for me?”

“I swear. I’ll make sure he behaves accordingly,” Taehyung says, earning himself a smile from Seokjin’s plush lips. “I’ll… I’ll see you soon?”

“Possibly,” Seokjin replies, tilting his head to the right. “Close your eyes, yeah? I’m going to leave now.”

There is another explosion of light like the one before, but this time when Taehyung opens his eyes, Seokjin is gone. It’s just Taehyung and Jeongguk in the living room now, both of them looking at each other as a sheepish smile spreads across each one of their faces. They both start laughing at the same time, Taehyung throwing himself into Jeongguk’s arms.

“I thought I was gonna lose you,” he starts, feeling his chest tighten at the thought. “I thought he’d make you go back there.”

“Me too. Fuck, Tae, me too,” Jeongguk says, letting Taehyung frame his face in between his palms and give him an intense look. “I’m so happy I can stay here with you.”

The two of them lean in at the same time, their lips crashing into a messy, but very, very happy kiss. Jeongguk’s arms clutch at Taehyung’s body almost desperately, just in the same way Taehyung holds Jeongguk’s face. One would think they had been reunited after being apart for a long period of time

“I love you so much,” Taehyung blurts out, unable to keep it to himself anymore. Not like this, after losing Jeongguk and not even being able to say goodbye. He knows that if Seokjin had dragged Jeongguk back to Hell before Taehyung came back, Taehyung would never forgive himself for not telling Jeongguk about his feelings. He’s not afraid to admit it anymore. “So, so much. Don’t leave me.”

“I love you. I love you a lot, Taehyung,” Jeongguk says, pressing another kiss to Taehyung’s lips. Taehyung’s heart does a pirouette when he listens to the words fall from Jeongguk’s lips. “I love you, and I can’t even make sense of it or what it means. I have never felt anything like this before.”

Taehyung laughs happily, his hands moving to Jeongguk’s shoulders so he can give him a tight hug, one that Jeongguk gives him back. They hug for what feels like ages, the two of them repeating their I love yous around a million times. It feels good to say it, but it feels even better to hear it. Jeongguk loves him. Jeongguk loves him.

The ball of happiness that he’s been feeling grow more and more inside of his chest for the last months reaches its biggest state now. Taehyung feels floaty, drunk on the feeling of euphoria and joy. He pulls back a little, looks at Jeongguk’s pretty eyes. He’s so in fucking love.

It’s then that he remembers something Jeongguk said before, now feeling the butterflies in  his stomach that his nervousness before prevented him from saying. He didn’t say anything then, but there is no way that Taehyung won’t address this now. Absolutely no way.

“So…” he starts, making Jeongguk look at him with expectant eyes. “You got a boyfriend, huh?”

Jeongguk laughs, leaning forward again and sealing their lips in a slow, intimate kiss. Somehow, that answer is worth more than a thousand words.

 

 

six months later…

 

“Baby, I’m going to work now,” Jeongguk announces, leaning over the back of the couch to press a kiss to Taehyung’s cheek.

“Okay. Have a nice day, Gukkie,” Taehyung tells him, twisting his head a little afterwards to steal a kiss from Jeongguk’s lips. Jeongguk complies, smiling a little as he indulges Taehyung and gives him a peck. “Can you stop by and get some groceries on your way back? We’re running out of milk.”

“Make a list and text me it,” Jeongguk replies, pulling back and grabbing his bag from where it’s resting on the floor. “Anything else?”

“Some cake would be nice. I don’t care what type—surprise me,” Taehyung says, turning around a little as Jeongguk laughs. “I’ll text you anything else.”

“I’ll get it before coming back,” Jeongguk mindlessly replies, about to walk to the door. Taehyung coughs. “Right. The phone.”

“You need to get used to carrying it with you,” Taehyung says with a laugh.

“Someday,” Jeongguk replies. “It’s only been a few months.”

It took much less time for Jeongguk to get his lifeguard license than it took for Taehyung to convince him to get a phone. In the end, the argument that Taehyung used that managed to convince his boyfriend was that they needed it to communicate. Taehyung is no demon, and so the telepathic communication that Jeongguk is used to wouldn’t work with him. Jeongguk, who because of his work started to spend a lot more time away from the apartment, and therefore away from Taehyung, ended up giving in.

Despite having the phone, Jeongguk is always forgetting it everywhere. He’s very detached from it, but hey, at least he hasn’t lost it. Yet.

Luckily, he has Taehyung to remind him.

“I’ll see you later,” Taehyung says, returning his attention to the laptop as Jeongguk walks out of the bedroom, where his phone was forgotten. “I love you! Have a good day,” he repeats.

“I love you, Tae,” Jeongguk replies, ruffling his hair as he walks behind him. “I’ll see you when you’re back, baby.”

With that, Jeongguk takes to the door and leaves the apartment. Taehyung won’t be here for much longer after this, as he also has work to get to in a couple of hours.

Taehyung would say it’s a coincidence that both he and Jeongguk ended up working at pools and mostly surrounded by kids, but he’s aware that it's not. There is probably a lot of his influence behind Jeongguk deciding to dedicate himself to this, but Jeongguk seems to genuinely like it, apart from that.

They don’t work at the same pool, and their jobs are nowhere near the same. That doesn’t stop Taehyung from being endeared, though.

They’ve built a routine, the two of them. Now that they’re official boyfriends and Jeongguk has a job, their life has turned out to be much more mundane. There isn’t as much room from improvisation as there was in the first two months, since both have responsibilities and places to be. The thing is that Taehyung likes that routine. He loves that routine.

He wakes up two hours before he should have to thanks to Jeongguk’s alarm, but he’s gotten used to it. Jeongguk’s clothes take up half the space of his wardrobe, and his toiletries take up a lot of the little cabinet space he has in the bathroom. He leaves his clothes everywhere, Taehyung finding socks in the most unsuspecting places, always after either of them takes a bag of clothes to the launderette.

But he also gets to wake up to kisses every day, and gets to be held to sleep every night. He gets to have his very own personal demon to take him flying around whenever they feel like it. He gets ‘I love you’ whispered in his ear every single night, as well as a kiss to the forehead whenever he’s feeling sad. Taehyung gets to feel more loved than he ever has, and he gets to love someone more than he knew he was capable of.

And if he has to sacrifice a couple of hours of sleep and some closet space, then so be it. Taehyung’s far too in love with Jeongguk and with the promise of the rest of their lives to care about that.