They're in the car ride back to their dorm when Soobin murmurs, “I was awake, you know,” into the crook of Yeonjun's neck, lips brushing against skin.
Yeonjun hums absentmindedly as he curls his fingers through Soobin's hair. “Were you?”
“Yeah,” Soobin says quietly. “Hyung, you're pretty cute with me when you think I'm not paying attention.”
He doesn't have to specify what he's talking about for Yeonjun to know he means those few seconds Yeonjun had played up the cuteness on camera before their earlier performance. Soobin had been fast asleep, curled up uncomfortably on a chair, and Yeonjun let himself play with their leader for a few seconds before leaving him alone.
He'd done it with the knowledge that there was a camera, of course, but he can't say it wasn't fun. Yeonjun snorts now, turning his phone off and tilting his head back against the headrest. This road is bumpy, so he and Soobin sway together in the confines of the back seats, listening to Huening Kai and Beomgyu talk quietly while Taehyun is fast asleep next to them. The light of Huening Kai's phone casts a dim, bluish-white light across them. “Were you really awake, though? You seemed fast asleep.”
“Mm.” Soobin nuzzles further into him and Yeonjun miserably fails at containing the flutters in his chest. “I was sort of asleep.”
“That makes no sense,” Yeonjun says, and Soobin huffs.
“You know, hyung, that in-between between being asleep and awake?” He insists. “Like, I almost thought I was dreaming up you bothering me. Which would've made sense—”
“Oh,” Yeonjun teases, “do you dream of me often, Soobinie?”
Soobin snorts and pushes him lightly. “Only nightmares, hyung.”
Yeonjun gasps and laughs louder than necessary, and Beomgyu turns around in his seat to stick his tongue out at them. “Ah, you brat. Can't you entertain me for a little bit?”
“Don't I entertain you enough?” Soobin jokes. His voice is soft and quiet, low-toned as it vibrates against the skin of Yeonjun's neck.
“Actually, you entertain me maybe too much,” Yeonjun says, snickering. “Not complaining, though.”
“Mm, you shouldn't,” Soobin murmurs and then yawns, relaxing into Yeonjun even further, as though that were even possible. “I'm good for you like that.”
Yeonjun's heart, briefly, thumps in his chest so hard he swears Soobin should be able to feel it pressed up against him like this, though the younger boy doesn't comment.
Soobin is a warm weight beside him, one Yeonjun knows he should be used to at this point. Yet the feeling of him curled so close to Yeonjun only serves to make him feel painfully clingier, needy in a way that makes him grit his teeth.
He wants to hold Soobin as close to him as he possibly can but can't, he realizes, eyeing the way their manager looks up into the front mirror from time to time. They're allowed the freedom of touching like this specifically because they do it all the time both on and off camera, but anything more would be a step in the wrong direction. This doesn't stop him from feeling petulant, of course.
“Soobinie,” he murmurs. The car slows to a stop at a red light, and Soobin hums his acknowledgement once more. “Is it weird that I miss you all the time, even when we're like this?”
He expects Soobin to laugh quietly, or make a cheesy remark in that silly way of his. He's pleasantly surprised to feel him shift against the crook of his neck, clearly thinking for a few moments. “I don't think it's weird, hyung,” he says after a moment, sounding thoughtful. “We're busy all the time, aren't we?”
Yeonjun sighs. “I guess. But—we still spend so much time together, don't we? You're in my room more often than you're in your own room.”
Soobin huffs a laugh. “Oh, absolutely,” he replies. “That doesn't mean you can't want me to yourself more, though.”
Yeonjun cringes. “Isn't that being too clingy?”
Soobin yawns and sits up a little. The loss of immediate warmth makes Yeonjun wince, though he doesn't move to curl in closer. “Not to me,” he says confidently. “We both like being around each other, right? But it's hard because of our schedules. You aren't clingy just because you want to spend more time with me, hyung.”
“I think there's a difference between wanting to spend more time with you and needing to touch you every three seconds,” Yeonjun protests quietly. “It's kind of embarrassing.”
“Well, you've found your match,” Soobin says cheekily, and when Yeonjun spares a glance at him Soobin is grinning cutely. They pass streetlamps that wash Soobin in an orange glow. “Hyung, why so worried? If I was genuinely bothered by anything, I'd tell you. I'm just as clingy as you are, remember?”
Yeonjun huffs, shrugging. “I dunno.”
Soobin laughs quietly before he takes Yeonjun's hand in his, smoothing his thumb over the bumps and ridges of his knuckles, and Yeonjun stares at the dim silhouette of their size difference. “Don't be so silly,” he murmurs, and then he's brushing his lips over Yeonjun's jawline, his weight back on his side, and Yeonjun flushes. “Maybe I should come to your room when we get back?”
“Beomgyu will throw a fit,” Yeonjun whispers, shivering as Soobin takes his other hand and places it on Yeonjun's thigh. He presses the lightest of butterfly kisses to Yeonjun's ear and then tucks his head back into his neck.
“Beomgyu will hang out with Taehyun and Huening Kai anyway,” Soobin reasons. “I wanna spend time with you.”
You mean make out with me, Yeonjun wants to say, but his mouth seems to have stopped working. All the contact and the potential risk, however small, that comes with it—the way Soobin seems to have no qualms about being this close to him and subsequently satisfying Yeonjun's apparent need for this sort of touch—makes him feel a little fuzzy. Maybe it's the exhaustion, too, but still—
“Is hyung shy now?” Soobin teases, and Yeonjun scoffs.
“Shut up, you brat,” he mutters. “Just don't want to get into trouble.”
“Hm, good point,” Soobin murmurs. “But it isn't like we're doing anything people aren't already used to. You think manager-nim can see our hands? It's fine. Don't worry so hard.”
Soobin has always been the shier one of the two, and the fact that he's the one reassuring Yeonjun makes him want to berate himself. He's older. If anyone has to be insecure about anything, it should be Soobin—well, preferably, he thinks as his mind races a mile per minute, neither of them should have to be insecure—and yet here he is.
He still can't really help the piece of him that feels somehow sated as Soobin practically drapes his large self all over Yeonjun, the hand on his lower thigh trailing up and down slowly and making him shiver. Yeonjun's hand is still in his, Soobin's warm palm and longer fingers keeping him caged in in a way that doesn't make him uncomfortable in the slightest.
He should be used to this, but it makes his heart race anyway. Soobin doesn't seem to notice, and if he does, he makes no comment. Yeonjun is silently grateful.
When they get back to the dorm, Beomgyu helps Huening Kai drag a very tired Taehyun to bed. Beomgyu turns around last-second to give Soobin a narrow-eyed, knowing look, though his lips twist themselves up into a smile, so Yeonjun doesn't think too much of it as he drags Soobin off to his room.
“Whoa, whoa,” Soobin giggles as Yeonjun opens his door and pulls him inside. “Hyung, shouldn't we wash up first?”
“Shut up, I know,” Yeonjun whines. “Gonna grab my toothbrush. You wash up too.”
“Mkay.” Soobin presses a soft kiss to Yeonjun's cheek and then disappears off to the room he shares with Beomgyu.
And it is far too easy to let the exhaustion of the day catch up with him as he goes through the routine of getting ready for bed. It's past midnight by the time he steps into the shower, letting lukewarm water wash over him until he can no longer stand it. He dries off. Brushes his teeth, staring at himself drowsily in the mirror and trying not to frown at the bags under his eyes. Flosses, washes his face. Steps out of the bathroom to let Huening Kai take his turn.
Pokes his head into the doorway of Taehyun and Kai's room, only to see Beomgyu relaxing and scrolling through his phone while Taehyun shuffles around, throwing a too-big black sweater on. “You guys good over here?” He whispers.
Beomgyu gives him a thumbs-up and Taehyun smiles and says, “Yeah. Goodnight, hyung.”
“Don't ruin our Soobinie hyung,” Beomgyu says teasingly, and Yeonjun mimes running into the room to hit him. Beomgyu flinches and Taehyun laughs quietly, shaking his head.
Soobin is already in his room by the time he steps in, though. The younger boy is swaddled up in his blankets, one of his stuffed animals on the pillow next to him. Yeonjun shuts the door and lets the quiet glow of moonlight from his open curtains act as a guidance until he finds the switch to his lamp and turns it on, closing the curtains and washing the room in warm luminosity.
“I like how soft you look before you sleep,” Soobin comments as Yeonjun plugs his phone into the charger. When he turns his head to give him a quizzical look, Soobin smiles up at him. “And in the morning. You just feel more... real, if that makes sense. It's less so when we're all dolled up and wearing makeup, you know?”
“I get that,” Yeonjun hums. He's only wearing a baggy white sweater and gray sweatpants, hair still a little wet, and yet Soobin cannot seem to take his eyes off of him as he stretches and then gestures at the younger boy to scoot over and make room. He climbs into bed and snuggles under the comforter, moving the plushie out of the way so he can properly look at Soobin, who blinks up at him sleepily.
“Another long day tomorrow, hyung,” Soobin murmurs after a moment.
“Mm.” Yeonjun looks at Soobin, really looks at him. Watches the way his tongue darts out to lick his lips, the way his eyes somehow manage to shine and sparkle as he looks at him. The slope of his nose and the slow movement of his breaths. “And another one after that, and after that, so on so forth.”
Soobin smiles and yawns. “Totally worth it, though.”
“Absolutely,” Yeonjun agrees. This is his dream. He isn't complaining.
Soobin doesn't complain either, when Yeonjun cups his cheek with his hand, pushing a little harder than necessary just to watch the squish flatten out a little. Soobin doesn't complain when he leans in a little—seems the opposite, in fact, his breath hitching as bright eyes search his face. “Can we?”
Yeonjun snorts quietly. “Would I do this and then say no?”
Soobin pouts. “I dunno, hyung. Just—c'mon, I want it.”
“Impatient,” Yeonjun murmurs, but he feels terribly fond as he leans in further, lifts himself up a little and brushes their noses together with a smile. Soobin's breaths fan out across his face. He smells like strawberries and toothpaste, and somehow it doesn't mix unpleasantly.
The younger boy's lips are soft against his when he presses them together. Yeonjun sighs through his nose and then leans in even further until he's half-draped across Soobin—much like how Soobin had draped himself over Yeonjun in the car ride home—and Yeonjun closes his lips around Soobin's just to hear the soft drop of noise he makes, hidden in the back of his throat.
After this, it is far too easy to dive in deeper. Soobin is pliant halfway underneath him, though a hand comes up to smooth up and down the length of Yeonjun's arm comfortingly as Yeonjun lightly sucks on his bottom lip.
He doesn't know why he feels like he's starving, taking what Soobin has to give and then asking for more every time he leans back in. Every part of where they touch sets Yeonjun on fire just as much as it quietly sates him, and he supposes this, in general, is what being with Soobin is like. Simultaneously enticing, never enough because of their surroundings, and peaceful in the way Soobin reciprocates with his own brand of passionate—gripping onto Yeonjun's shoulders and making a breathy noise when Yeonjun forgets himself for a moment and sinks his teeth into the plushness of Soobin's bottom lip.
They stay like that for what feels like forever. Absentmindedly, Yeonjun wishes they could have forever to themselves like this, tangled up into each other as Yeonjun licks carefully into his mouth. But he is realistic and knows they'll have to stop soon to sleep, as much as he tries to push the stress of their early morning schedules away from his mind.
“Relax, hyung,” Soobin breathes when they part for a moment. “You're still so wound up. Wanna talk about it?”
His heart swells with warmth even as he shakes his head. “Not really,” he whispers. “Just want to be here with you.”
“Okay,” Soobin murmurs quietly, tangles his fingers in his hair, and when Yeonjun looks into the younger boy's eyes he catches the sheer adoration in his gaze. His heart beats painfully against his rib cage, threatening to burst. Soobin smiles like he knows how he's feeling and then pulls him back in, slotting their bodies together like he cannot get close enough, and Yeonjun lets himself breath, forgets the stress of the day ahead and lets Soobin take care of it.