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Tell Me You Love Me

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Starting at a new school was something most people didn’t like. Having to make new friends, learn the entire campus again, meeting the new teachers. And if you started late in the year then you were probably behind because every teacher taught at a different pace. Luckily, Jimin began at the beginning of the year. But it didn’t make it any better for him.

He was leaving behind his best friends. All the memories he made at his old school. After all, this was his senior year and now he wasn’t even graduating with the people he’s known for the last four years. Of course, he was bummed about it. He wanted to wear the school colours of green and white. Wanted to walk with his best friend down the aisle, hear both their parents scream out towards them.

But no.

That wasn’t going to happen.

The only good thing about this moving process was that he was finally going to school with his childhood friend. The man who has been with him throughout grade and middle school. They got separated during their freshman year of high school. Jimin going to one school and Namjoon going to the other.

Sure, they kept in touch during all these years. But they didn’t hang out like they used to. Saturday’s were no longer designated nights for sleepovers. They wouldn’t constantly go out to eat only to get yelled at by their parents for not saving their money for something more important. When high school came their relationship changed.

But Jimin’s feelings never did.

For as long as Jimin could remember he always liked Namjoon. His feelings for the elder boy becoming more and more all through middle school. But it was always kept a secret. Jimin was shy, embarrassed to ever try and admit his feelings to Namjoon. The elder was always so much better than him. Much smarter, more popular, even the teachers liked him more. They weren’t in the same league. Namjoon was better than him.

There is a fine line in their friendship. A line between being friends and being anything more. But there’s a wall blocking Jimin entrance from being anything more. He’s trapped in the friendzone. And even though his feelings for Namjoon will never change, his will to confess to the elder has.

He never plans to do so.

As long as he can stay in Namjoon’s life as his friend then that’s good for him. That’s all he needs. Maybe they could bring back some of their old traditions once again.

Jimin didn’t know what he was expecting on the first day of school. He knew Namjoon was aware of him transferring to the school, but he was expecting maybe a hi or a high five from the elder. Not a tight embrace as soon as they spotted each other for the first time in years.

“Jiminie!” He cried, pure happiness laced in his voice as he ran up to Jimin and crushed him in a hug. “It’s been so long! I can’t believe we’re graduating together. Remember all those-...you’re still short.”

Jimin huffed crossing his arms over his chest as Namjoon had pulled away from the hug, “I’m not short! You just became a giant.”

“Or you’re short Jiminie.” Namjoon teased, laughing. “How have you been? I know we’ve talked over texting and such, but I haven’t seen you in person in such a long time. Wow...I really can’t believe you’re here.”

“Well believe it because I am.” Jimin smiled as he followed Namjoon taking steps towards the campus. “We used to say we would graduate together when we were younger. I guess it really is coming true, isn’t it?”

Namjoon nodded his head, “Yeah. I wondered if our parents had heard us all those years ago and planned this out. Or maybe we just got lucky.”

“I think we just got lucky.” Jimin laughed, as they turned a corner. “What’s your schedule? Maybe we have some classes together?”

“Maybe.” Namjoon shrugged as he pulled out a piece of paper from his pocket and passed it over to Jimin to look at. “I’m in a lot of Advanced Classes. But if you are too that would be amazing.”

Jimin shook his head, “I’m not nearly as smart as you for that. I’m in regular classes. But we do have our music and exercise class together. So at least those will be fun.”

“You’re smart enough. It’s just that they don’t see that.” Namjoon huffed as he took his schedule back. “I’ll take you to your first class, but unfortunately the Advanced classes aren’t in the same area as the regular classes so you’ll be on your own.”

Jimin only smiled in response, “That’s fine. I’ll find my way eventually. Don’t worry.”

“I’m really excited to have you here Jiminie.” Namjoon whispered, loud enough for only them to hear. “I’ve missed seeing you everyday.”

“Now you’ll get tired of seeing me everyday.” Jimin responded as Namjoon led the way.

——

It’s easy for Jimin to make friends. He meets two boys by the names Hoseok and Jeongguk that he easily befriends within the first day. Whenever they’re in a class that Namjoon isn’t in they’re always keeping him company and it helps out that Hoseok shares the same exact schedule as Jimin.

Luckily enough, Jimin never got lost that first day. The people on campus seemed relatively nice, to the point where everyone he asked quickly explained how he was to get to wherever it was he needed to be. Already, Jimin liked this school a bit more than his old one.

But that that doesn’t mean he doesn’t miss it. Everyday he thinks of his best friend Taehyung, messaging him with questions asking how things are, asking when they can hang out again, and if it’s lonely without him. Those two were nearly inseparable and now that they don’t go to school together both of them feel a bit lost. He sometimes wishes Taehyung could transfer here too.

It’s weird, to be honest, seeing Namjoon every day again. Remembering that this is his childhood best friend and they’re actually completing the promise they made years ago. It's weird to see his smile, to hear how his life has changed over the course of the these last four years, to hear the things that weren’t said over text, to see him in person.

The feelings Jimin has long tried to forget get pulled from their grave. He’s still so in love with Namjoon. Still so whipped for the man and yet he’ll still never be enough to date him. Never have the courage to even confess.

Maybe that’s why Seokjin gets introduced to him by Hoseok. Maybe that’s why suddenly he’s getting flowers, and chocolates placed in his locker. Maybe Seokjin is supposed to be here to take his mind off Namjoon to help him forget about those feelings that have been developing for years and years.

Or...maybe Seokjin is just here because he likes Jimin.

He’s walking to his locker with Jeongguk by his side when he noticed Seokjin is waiting for him. Him and Namjoon. Jimin casts a glance at Jeongguk who only shrugs in response and soon enough he’s turning a corner trying to leave the three of them alone.

“Joonie! Seokjin-Hyung. Do you two know each other?” Jimin asks waiting until they move out of the way so he could grab out his textbooks to take home.

“Yeah.” Namjoon almost spits walking to the opposite of Jimin, “We know each other. Not very fondly though.”

It’s only then Jimin realizes the tense atmosphere between them. It’s then he realizes why Jeongguk had left so fast. There was something going on between Namjoon and Seokjin, but he hadn’t a clue what it was.

“O-Oh okay.” Jimin mumbles, rushing to get his textbooks into his backpack. The faster he could leave the better. “Seokjin-Hyung did you have something you needed?” He asks continuing to stuff them inside.

“Oh right.” Seokjin clears his throat. “I was wondering if you’d like to go on a date with me this weekend.”

A squeak leaves Jimin’s mouth, bag falling from his grasp and onto the floor. He leans down to pick it up only for Namjoon to beat him to it and take it into his own arms straightening out the books himself.

He didn’t expect Seokjin to ask him out right now.

“No. He doesn’t want to go.” Namjoon answers for him, not wasting another second to grab Jimin’s wrist and pull him away from the locker. He doesn’t return Jimin’s backpack instead continues to hold it while they walk towards the parking lot where Namjoon’s car is.

“What was that about?” Jimin whines pulling his hand free from the grasp of Namjoon’s. “Seokjin is nice. I might have enjoyed that.”

“You don’t want to be friends with him. Or anything more for that fact.” Namjoon replies, shaking his head back and forth. “Don’t get involved with him.”

“I don’t see what’s wrong with it.” Jimin huffs, “Just because you don’t like him doesn’t mean I can’t see him.”

“Please?” Namjoon stops walking. Feet faced forward while he turns his head to glance at Jimin. He wonders why Namjoon cares so much about who he sees and whatnot. It’s not like they’re dating or anything. Was Namjoon jealous? “Don’t go on a date with him.”

Jimin sighs, sucking in a breath. He holds his hand out for his backpack which Namjoon returns. “I’m not promising anything. Seokjin seems genuine. Don’t you trust me, Joonie?”

“I do but-“

“If you trust me, then trust me.”

Namjoon doesn’t respond to that. Instead let’s out a frustrated groan and starts heading towards the car again with Jimin following in his footsteps.

——

“He sounds jealous.” Taehyung commented when they’re talking on the phone later that night. He had texted Seokjin repeatedly apologizing for Namjoon’s behaviour and asking if his invite for a date was still on. Luckily, it was. “Has he ever been this way before? Whenever you had a date?”

“Once when we were in middle school. But it wasn’t much of a date. We just went out to see a movie but Namjoon was jealous because he wanted to take me to see it.” Jimin shrugs, “Besides Tae, I don’t see the harm in it. Hoseokie and Jeonggukie both like Seokjin. It’s only Namjoon who doesn’t. One little date won’t hurt, right?”

“No, but you should also mention you aren’t seeking to date this Seokjin fellow. Don’t give him the wrong idea. This date could turn into two or three, and eventually he might muster up the courage to ask you out.” Taehyung explains inhaling a breath, “I think you should tell him you like someone else. And that you only want to be friends with him. Maybe instead of this being a date it could be a little hangout between friends. But don’t tell Namjoon about it. You might be able to find out if he’s jealous or not that way.”

“That’s a brilliant idea, Tae! I knew you were my soulmate for a reason.” Jimin exclaims, bright smile forming on his face. “If I was there right now I’d give you the fattest kiss on your cheek.”

“I’ll just imagine you did.” Taehyung giggles. “Come visit me soon, okay? And keep me updated on what’s going between you all. It’s like a love triangle you see in those dramas. I’m curious as to how this one ends.”

“I’m taking my kiss back now.” Jimin says rolling his eyes. “I gotta go do homework. But I’ll text you, okay?”

“Sure sure. Remember to text Seokjin.”

“Yes Mom. I’m going.”

“Bye son. Love you.”

Jimin scoffs, “Love you too Tae.”

——

Maybe in Jimin’s head things went worse when he confessed to Seokjin that he had feelings for someone else. He imagined Seokjin getting angry or upset because Jimin let him believe he was interested. But that wasn’t the case. Instead, Seokjin was completely cool with it. Said he was glad Jimin told him before they’re relationship could have gotten further. Before his feelings could have grown more.

And like Taehyung said, instead of Saturday being a date. It’s a hangout amongst friends. Minus Hoseok and Jeongguk.

Jimin wouldn’t lie though when Saturday came around he was really excited. It’d been a while since he had gotten the chance to just go out and enjoy some time with other people since he’s been so busy with all his classes. He can’t even imagine what Namjoon must be going through since he’s in all those advanced classes.

Namjoon wasn’t too excited about the news though. Once Jimin told him he was busy this Saturday with Seokjin, Namjoon had asked where they were going and if it was a date. He sounded almost sad that Jimin was going out with Seokjin despite being asked not to.

Part of Jimin feels guilty for going against Namjoon’s wishes considering he’s known him longer than anyone else. But at the same time he wants to know why Namjoon is so against this. Sure, he didn’t like Seokjin he knew that much but it seemed like it was more than that.

And if Taehyung was right then Namjoon was jealous and Jimin wanted to know why. It wasn’t like Namjoon had feelings for him. Right?

Jimin sighs as he’s handed his ice cream that Seokjin bought for him. “So...let me take a wild guess here.” Seokjin began as they walked around the park. There wasn’t much either of them wanted to do today but once Jimin spotted that ice cream truck they stopped at the park. “The guy you like...it’s Namjoon, right?”

He looks up from his ice cream straight towards the taller male quite surprised he managed to guess that. “H-how did you know? Is it that obvious?”

“Not really. But I’ve watched you two on campus. It’s obvious to me now that you answered yes but I was just guessing. I could have been wrong.” He hums, licking at the cone he bought himself. “Why don’t you ask him on a date?”

“Because he doesn’t like me.”

Seokjin scoffs, “You really think that?”

“Yes? Why?”

“Oh honey.” Seokjin shakes his head, “When Joon and I were friends he never shut up about how much he missed and wanted to see you.”

“You two were friends?”

“Back in freshman and sophomore year, yeah. But I won’t bore you with what happened between us. It’s not me who has the problem. Namjoon still holds a grudge and it’s honestly a dumb reason.”

“But you were friends...and he talked about me to you?”

“So much. Honestly, sometimes I had to leave because that’s all he would mention.” Seokjin looks over at Jimin, “That man is in love with you.”

“Then why did you..?”

“Try to date you?” Jimin nods, “Because I did like you. And at the time when we were introduced I hadn’t realized you liked Namjoon. But I knew my intentions wouldn’t work. It was worth a shot though, right?”

“I suppose.” Jimin shrugs, “I don’t know what to do about Namjoon though.”

“Oh not much really. Just ask him if he’s jealous - which he is - and go from there.” Seokjin breaks out into a smile, “Also you should be aware that he’s here actually. I saw him a bit ago. He’s over on a bench by the ice cream truck.”

This makes Jimin stop and turn around abruptly. “He’s what?!” Eyes looking around the ice cream truck he spots someone sitting alone on a bench looking towards them. But when their eyes meet he’s quickly looking away. “That little brat. KIM NAMJOON COME HERE RIGHT NOW.”

As if he’s a dog caught doing something bad Namjoon stands up and slowly comes towards them with his head down. As if he’s ashamed of what he’s done.

“I’ll go stand over there.” Seokjin says pointing towards a tree. “If you need me just call me, okay?”

Jimin only nods in response as Namjoon gets closer to them. Putting a hand on his hip Jimin stares at Namjoon with an unamused look on his face.

“Why are you here?” Jimin asks.

“I just...wanted some fresh air. Why?”

“Joonie…” Jimin sighs shaking his head. “Were you jealous? Of me and Seokjin hanging out?”

“I…” Namjoon lowers his head again, “Maybe a little bit.”

“Why?”

“Because I like you, Jimin. Even more than that. I love you. I wanted to be the one to take you on a date first.” Namjoon slowly lifts his eyes to meet Jimin’s, a small flush blooming on his cheeks like the lovestruck teenager that he is. There’s hesitance laced in his voice though, almost like he thinks Jimin might resent him for this. Might hate him because feelings that reached beyond the friendzone could potentially ruin their friendship.

But that’s far from the case at hand.

Jimin’s heart stammers in his chest at those words. Seokjin was right. Namjoon does like him. The guy he’s been crushing on for years and years does like him.

“You...like me?” Jimin repeats. He needs to hear it again.

“I do. I like you Jimin.”

“Joonie, I like you. I-I’ve liked you for years. Since middle school. I just...I never had the courage to tell you.” Jimin is quick to explain, reaching out with his free hand to take Namjoon’s hand. “I didn’t go on a date with Seokjin today. We’re just hanging out. He knows I like you Joonie.”

There’s a look of pure shock that floods through Namjoon’s face. He looks from Jimin over towards where Seokjin is casually leaning against the tree scrolling on his phone and then back to Jimin again. His eyes are blown wide as if he’s a deer caught in the headlights. As if he couldn’t actually believe the words Jimin was saying.

But as quick as the shock comes it’s gone away and a small smile fits its way onto Namjoon’s face. “So it wasn’t a date.” He lets out a breath of relief. “I’m glad to hear that. I really thought you were going to go on a-” He stops abruptly, once again looking towards where Seokjin is before letting out a soft whine and saying, “Wait, he knew about your crush before me? That’s not fair.”

With a tiny giggle, Jimin nods his head to answer Namjoon’s question, “How can I make it up to you then?” Jimin asks, now tilting his head to the side in wonderous curiosity.

“Maybe a kiss or two? And maybe if you agree to be a boyfriend?”

Jimin can’t help the laugh that rips through him as he bounces closer and plants a kiss on Namjoon’s nose, and then his lips. “Maybe I agree then.”

“My boyfriend.” Namjoon hums, pulling Jimin closer.

“Yours. All yours.”

“Now let’s go on a real date. One that’s long past due.”

Jimin smiles, intertwining their hands together. “I’d like that. But before we do, I kind of need to tell Seokjin. I can’t just leave him there by the tree waiting for me. He even bought me ice cream.”

“I could buy you all the ice cream that you want. We can even bring back our little Saturday movie nights.” Namjoon pouts holding Jimin’s hand tighter.

“We can do that after I let Seokjin know.” Jimin replies shaking his head, “He’s my friend, boyfriend. There’s no need to be jealous now.”

“Okay okay.” Namjoon sighs nodding his head. “Go let him know. And then we’ll go on our date, yeah? I’m gonna make this date the best one yet. One that I’ve been wanting to do with you for a long time now.”

Jimin turns towards Namjoon and presses a kiss on his cheek before pulling away from his grasp and heading towards where Seokjin is. “A long time now, yeah? I’m excited to see what you’ve got planned.”

“I’m excited to spoil you and catch up on all the years I’ve missed.” He faintly hears Namjoon reply.

A smile tugs at his lips as he approaches Seokjin, “I am too.” He replies.