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In Your Eyes

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Kim Taehyung is unsure of many things in his life.

He’s not sure what his favorite color is (they’re all just so beautiful), he’s not sure what his favorite movie is (it just depends on his mood), and he’s not sure why his hyungs keep allowing him to indulge in the evil pleasure of alcohol.

Currently, him and Jimin are curled up on the living room couch of their dorm together, a shitty Netflix romcom acting as mere background noise as the two of them giggle softly, drunkenly.

Alcohol turns Kim Taehyung into a menace. Honestly, everybody should know this by now, why hasn’t anybody told him to stop drinking yet?

“Come on Jiminie,” he tilts the bottle of soju back, emptying the last of its contents into his mouth, swallowing with satisfaction and wincing a little bit at the burn. “I know you have a romance bucket list, who doesn’t?”

Jimin giggles again, so so happy and so so drunk.

“Romance bucket list? I swear, you’re making this up, Tae.”

“I’m not!” Taehyung protests, although he himself is pretty sure he has never heard of a romance bucket list until he first uttered the words. “I didn’t make it up, I swear!” He protests again in response to Jimin’s disbelieving giggles. “C’mon, you don’t have any relationship goals? Like cute date ideas, proposals, y’know,” he waves his hand around, trying to get his point across. “All that cheesy shit.”

Jimin blushes as his giggles subside. He sets his bottle of soju down on the coffee table, stretching and arching his back with a groan. His white t-shirt rides up on his stomach, revealing a tan patch of skin, and Taehyung gulps and forces himself to look away.

“Well,” Jimin begins, a smile working its way into his face. “To be honest, I’ve always loved the idea of somebody doing some kind of grand romantic gesture for me.” He giggles again. “I love when that happens in the romcoms, ‘s so cheesy but perfect in a cliche kind of way.”

Taehyung’s heart clenches because Jesus Christ, Jimin is the cutest person on the planet.

“I always knew you were a die hard romantic, Jiminie.” Taehyung ignores the butterflies in his stomach and launches into Jimin’s personal space, ruffling his hair playfully as the elder squawks in indignation.

“Get off me!” He says playfully, pushing at Taehyung’s skinny frame until he’s sat a reasonable distance away with his head resting against the back cushions of the couch. “I thought everybody knew I was a die hard romantic. I mean really, Tae? We watch The Notebook together like once a month.”

“Mmm,” Taehyung hums in affirmation. “We do watch that a lot.” He mumbles, sleepiness clouding the corners of his brain.

Jimin sighs wistfully and his smile dims just a bit.

“I feel lonely sometimes, y’know?” He mumbles quietly.

And yes, Taehyung knows. Taehyung knows more than Jimin could ever imagine. He’s well acquainted with the suffocating feeling of unrequited love and the loneliness that comes with it. Loneliness follows him everywhere he goes, almost like his own shadow. It settles deep into his bones late at night as he sleeplessly stares at his bedroom ceiling, making itself at home in the large hole in Taehyung’s heart, a hole that is reserved for Jimin and unable to be filled by anyone else. So yeah, after being head over heels in love with his best friend for years, Taehyung is pretty familiar with loneliness.

“Me too, ‘M lonely all the time.” Taehyung slurs, blinking his sleepy eyes up at Jimin. The playful atmosphere of the evening is gone, instead replaced by emotions that feel more sentimental and heavy.

Jimin looks sad at Taehyung’s response, opening his mouth to most likely initiate one of their frequent heart to hearts where they talk about every overwhelming emotion that’s been suffocating them for the past week, but instead, Taehyung loses his self control and leans forward, cupping his hand around Jimin’s cheek. Noticing Jimin’s wide eyed look of panic, Taehyung quickly regains his self control and at the last minute turns his head to plant a kiss onto Jimin’s right cheek instead. He pulls back and looks him dead in the eyes, running the pad of his thumb over his soft cheekbone.

“One day, someone is gonna love you so much that it’ll fill up every crevice of your body and make you forget that you were ever lonely to begin with.” Taehyung wishes he could be that person, his chest aches.

He thinks he sees tears in Jimin’s eyes.

Taehyung shouldn’t be allowed to drink.

1 week later

It’s 1 AM and Taehyung is currently curled up in his bed watching another romcom on his laptop. His thick duvet is pulled up to his waist, back resting against the headboard, and laptop propped up against his thighs.

Watching romcoms just isn’t as fun without Jimin, Taehyung thinks.

Jimin had left the dorm early this morning to start his trip back to Busan where he would be spending the holidays with his family. It hasn’t even been 24 hours since his departure and Taehyung already misses him with a deep ache in his heart.

Pathetic, he thinks.

He had attempted to sleep away the suffocating loneliness, biding goodnight to the rest of the boys at the early time of 10 PM and getting a solid 2 hours of sleep. But of course, his brain hates him, so now he’s wide awake at 1 am, halfway through Say Anything, watching John Cusack go through an emotional crisis at the expense of his lover.

Taehyung rubs his eyes, pushing his black curly hair off of his forehead with a sleepy sigh. He should really be asleep right now and he knows he’s going to regret this in the morning, exhaustion already weighing down his eyelids.

He’s just about to pause the movie and go back to sleep when John Cusack stands outside of his lover’s house with a boombox held over his head.

And huh, that’s interesting.

Taehyung can already feel his thoughts snowballing into dangerous territory, the board of executives in his brain throwing their hands up in exasperation. He can see the little neurons flipping through a thick stack of papers with their little neuron hands, panic evident in their movements as they try to read the Instruction Manual for Kim Taehyung’s Brain at rapid pace before this idea can develop any further.

But it’s too late. Everybody should know that once Taehyung gets an idea, he follows through with said idea, no matter how outlandishly insane it is (there’s still a dent in the floor from where he dropped a bowling ball onto the edge of the couch cushion to see if it would bounce, spoiler alert: it did not).

John Cusack is playing In Your Eyes by Peter Gabriel outside of his lover’s house. To be fair, she’s ignoring him, but the sentiment still stands. Taehyung is intrigued and possibly feeling a little bit crazed. Does standing outside of the love of your life’s house with a boombox playing an 80’s romance song count as a grand gesture? He thinks it does.

He slams his laptop shut and sits upright in his bed, heart pounding. Is he really going to do this? The neurons in his brain all scream NO collectively.

He’s going to do it.

Before he can think twice about it, he pushes his laptop off of his thighs and shoves the duvet to the bottom of the bed with his bare feet. He stands up, feet touching the cold polished wood and pauses to think.

Fuck. Jimin’s in Busan.

Fortunately for Taehyung, he’s insane.

He does the mental calculations, a 3 hour drive to Busan, 4 if there’s bad traffic. He checks the time on his phone, 1:56 AM. Yeah, he can do this.

It’s not exactly unusual for Taehyung to be this impulsive. He likes to live life on the edge, he finds it more refreshing to make spontaneous decisions, concluding that the experiences that result in them are much more memorable and invigorating than anything that could’ve been planned beforehand.

Has he ever made an impulsive decision as drastic as confessing his love to his best friend after a 4 hour drive to his hometown at 1 in the morning? Well, no. But there’s a first time for everything, he tells himself.

Maybe it’s the fact that he’s running off of two hours of sleep and a Starbucks frappuccino that he drank before bed, but he feels more alive than he has in weeks. He may be losing his mind, but if he doesn’t do this now then he might never get the guts to again.

Acting fast, he runs over to the corner of his room and grabs his boombox, crumbling for a moment under its weight.

Fuck, this thing is heavy, he thinks. It’s a vintage Promax Super Jumbo boombox from the 80’s that he bought from a yard sale a couple of years ago. Taehyung loves music, has been collecting cassette tapes for years now, familiarizing himself with music of multiple different genres from a variety of different decades. He loves music, appreciates everything about it, the art of creating it and the pleasure of listening to it. He considers it to be the love of his life (right after Jimin of course).

Taehyung sets the boombox down onto his bed and breathes out a sigh of relief at the loss of weight from his arms. Grabbing an overnight bag, he stuffs a cassette tape labeled 80’s Hits into the mix of unpacked clothes from his past flight already folded in the unzipped sack. He zips up the bag and stands up straight in his room again, burrowing his hands in his hair as a form of concentration.

What does one wear when confessing their profound love to their best friend of 7 years?

A jacket big enough to accompany him on a trip to Antarctica to meet a colony of penguins, Taehyung thinks. What can he say? He likes being warm and comfortable, especially in stressful situations. He opens up his closet and rummages through the variety of patterned garments until his hands seek his earthy green winter jacket with fur lining the hood. After slipping it on over his pajamas and zipping it up, he looks in the mirror and laughs almost a little crazily. He could honestly pass as an earth toned Santa Claus.

The outfit is unimportant, Taehyung thinks. The more critical issue at hand is what other essential materials need to be brought with him on a mission to confess his undying love to his best friend?

Snacks, of course. Taehyung gets on his knees and reaches underneath his bed to pull out a family sized bag of chips (he keeps a stash close by for when he doesn’t feel like padding into the kitchen for a midnight snack late at night).

And last but not least, Taehyung unzips one of his old suitcases and pulls out a bunch of road maps. He’s an old soul, sometimes if he can manage it he likes to find his way around the country the old fashioned way without the help of a modern day GPS.

He pushes the suitcase back underneath the bed and steps back to look at the materials he has collected. Boombox, overnight bag, maps, and snacks. He checks his phone. 2:06 AM. He’s got this.

Taking in the materials laying on his bed, he sighs in exasperation.

“Fuck it, I’m doing this in one trip.” He mumbles.

Picking up the overnight duffle bag first, he slings it over his right shoulder, reserving his left hand for the heavy boombox. The maps find residence underneath the puffy sleeves of his winter coat, and for lack of another limb, he leans down and bites the bag of chips, carrying it in between his teeth.

Fuck, he was really doing this.

He kicks open his bedroom door with a boom and internally cringes, hoping he didn’t wake up any of the other boys. Deep down, he knows they'd understand, it doesn’t take a genius to see that Taehyung has been hopelessly in love with Jimin for years now.

He begins the painful walk out of his bedroom, almost groaning at the weight of all of the items in his arms. He walks as fast as he can through the hallway and turns the corner to see Jungkook standing in the kitchen, glass of banana milk in hand.

Taehyung stops dead in his tracks like he’s been caught red handed.

Jungkook blinks once, looks down at the array of items in Taehyung’s arms, and then returns his gaze back up to his eyes.

The bag of chips drops from Taehyung’s mouth, landing on the floor with a pathetic thud.

“Do I even wanna know?” Jungkook asks, incredulously.

Taehyung laughs sheepishly. “Important business, Jungkookie. Hyung is on a mission.” He says, hoping that Jungkook doesn’t ask for any further elaboration.

Jungkook doesn’t comply though, setting his glass down on the table and sighing exasperatedly. “Alright fine, I’ll bite. What the fuck are you doing?”

Taehyung rolls his eyes overdramatically. “What? Can’t a man just go on an early morning drive for once?”

Jungkook blinks at him in bewilderment. He gestures wildly to all of the junk in Taehyung’s arms and squawks. “With a boombox? And maps? At 2 AM? Where the hell are you going?” Taehyung opens his mouth to respond but Jungkook cuts him off abruptly. “And don’t you dare say you’re going wherever life takes you.” Taehyung’s mouth snaps shut, damn, Jungkook knows him too well.

“Well,” Taehyung begins, pausing for a moment. He might as well just rip it off like a bandaid. “I’m going to drive 4 hours to Busan and tell Jimin that I’m in love with him by playing an 80’s love song outside of his window like John Cusack does in the movie Say Anything.

Jungkook blinks. They stare at each other in silence for a moment until the youngest clears his throat and speaks up.

“I think… this might be your worst idea yet.” He looks like he wants to say more but he’s in too much shock to even form a comprehensive sentence.

“Actually, I think it’s one of my best, thank you, Jungkookie.” Taehyung hoists everything up in his arms again, preparing to move once more, but Jungkook rushes around the kitchen counter to stand in front of him.

Placing his hands on Taehyung’s shoulders, he peers into his eyes like he’s searching for some kind of answer as to why Taehyung has lost his fucking mind.

“Taehyung, have you even thought this through?” He inquires, eyebrows raised expectantly.

“Yes.”

No.

“Taehyung, let me repeat myself. Have you even thought this through?” He speaks slower this time, as if he thought Taehyung didn’t understand him the first time.

“Okay, well, no.” Taehyung concludes and Jungkook groans, burying his face into the palms of his hands. “Kookie, it’s fine, really! It’s all fine, everything is gonna be okay!” He speaks reassuringly, although his voice doesn’t sound too convincing even to himself.

“Hyung, I know your motto is YOLO and everything but don’t you think this is a little too extreme? You are literally driving 4 hours to Busan at 2 AM to confess your love to Jimin. I want you to let that sink in.” Jungkook says, looking deeply into Taehyung’s eyes as though he’s speaking to a wild animal.

“Mmm, okay.” Taehyung closes his eyes and takes a deep breath, pretending to think. “Alright, I let it sink in. Excuse me now, I have a pressing matter to tend to.” Taehyung begins to move to the front door but Jungkook stops him once again.

“Hyung, please.” Taehyung turns around when he hears the genuine concern in Jungkook’s voice. “I know you’ve loved him for a long time, and don’t get me wrong, I’m happy that you’ve decided to confess because god it’s long overdue but,” He pauses. “Is this really something you want to do impulsively? This is a big deal, Tae. Are you really sure about this?”

Taehyung sighs and sets his stuff on the ground.

“Jungkookie, I know I probably seem crazy right now,” Taehyung begins.

Jungkook barks out a laugh. “That’s the biggest understatement of the year.”

Taehyung narrows his eyes but continues. “And I know I’m being impulsive. But honestly, Kook? I’ve never felt this brave and I don’t exactly know why it’s happening right now, but I know that I have to take advantage of it before it goes away. I can't keep living in misery. Last week Jiminie said that he wanted somebody to do a grand romantic gesture for him and god, Kook. He deserves this. And if he doesn’t like me back, it’ll hurt like a bitch, and I’ll probably sleep in your bed and cry to you every night for the next year and lose so much water weight from the amount of tears I shed but—”

“Okay, okay, I get it.” Taehyung stops his rambling and attempts to catch his breath. “I’m not worried about him not liking you back, hyung. I don’t think that’ll be an issue.” Jungkook smiles fondly, almost knowingly. “I’m just worried about you. Promise me you won’t regret this or end up changing your mind halfway to Busan?”

Taehyung smiles warmly. “Promise.” They link pinkies and Taehyung laughs softly, eyes turning sentimental soon after. “I really love him, Kook. And I really think I’m ready to tell him.” He says quietly.

Jungkook smiles proudly and wraps Taehyung up in a warm hug which he gladly reciprocates, bringing his arms around Jungkook’s broad shoulders and inhaling the scent of his fading cologne.

“I’m proud of you, Taehyungie.” He leans back and holds Taehyung at arms length, peering into his eyes. “And I want you to call me if you need anything at all, okay? Even if it’s just so you can have a breakdown over how insane you are. I’ll leave my phone volume on tonight so that I’ll be awake for anything you need.”

Taehyung grins even wider. “Love you, Jungkookie. I’ll be okay, I promise.” He leans forward to press a quick kiss to Jungkook’s forehead and then moves to pick his stuff up from the floor.

“Ah, ah,” Jungkook protests. “I’ll help you carry the boombox to the car, you literally looked like you were going to snap in half earlier from the weight of it.” He says, bending over to hoist the boombox into his arms.

“Yah!” Taehyung hits Jungkook’s arm playfully and laughs incredulously. “I was doing a perfectly fine job until you interrogated me like I was some kind of criminal!”

“Can you blame me? Who in their right mind comes out of their bedroom at 2 AM dressed like they’re boarding the first flight to Antarctica with a giant boombox in their hands? Was I supposed to just let you leave?” Jungkook asks in disbelief as he carries the boombox to the front door of their dorm, Taehyung following close behind with the other items in hand.

“Personally, I think I would fit in quite nicely with an Antarctic penguin colony.” Taehyung mumbles.

“Yeah, that’s because you’re deranged.”

Taehyung’s mouth drops open with a disbelieving squawk of laughter as he kicks Jungkook’s shin in retaliation, resulting in him dropping the boombox with a loud CRASH that resonates throughout the entire dorm.

“SHUT UP!” He hears faintly from one of the rooms.

Taehyung makes it safely to Busan in one piece.

He only experiences one existential crisis along the way which results in him making an illegal u-turn to haul ass back to Seoul, and then much to the dismay of the other early morning commuters, promptly changing his mind again and making a second illegal u-turn to get back on the road to Busan.

“Sorry, sorry!” Taehyung screams from behind the wheel, wincing as he sees the driver behind him swerve into the other lane, preparing to pass him after slamming on their horn.

He remembers reading an article a couple weeks ago about how nobody should venture into the New Year keeping secrets from their loved ones. It’s December 20th, he has 11 days to tell Jimin the biggest secret he’s ever kept. He’s not backing out now, not when he’s come this far.

At roughly 6 AM, Taehyung puts his car into park in front of Jimin’s house. Then, he proceeds to have his second existential crisis of the day.

“Jungkook,” Taehyung whimpers, resting his forehead on his steering wheel as his right hand holds his phone up to his ear. “I may be stupid.”

Jungkook hums in acknowledgement from the other end. “I thought we had already established that.”

“Yah! You said you were proud of me and everything, you little brat—” The loud sound of a blender interrupts Taehyung from his thoughts. “Are you using the blender at 6 AM?” Taehyung asks incredulously.

“Mhm,” Jungkook hums, the sound of ice being blended loud in the background. “‘M making milkshakes for all the boys.”

“Is everyone awake? Milkshakes? You do realize it’s 6 AM right?” Taehyung speaks slowly.

“Yeah, and?” The blender stops and Taehyung can hear faint talking in the background. “I woke everyone up early.”

“Why exactly?” Taehyung asks slowly.

Jungkook scoffs in disbelief from the other end of the line. “Why do you think? We’re all waiting to see how your 80’s romcom themed confession plays out.”

Taehyung groans in agony and holds his phone away from his ear as he hears the loud sound of hooting laughter.

“You woke everyone up for this?” He asks in disbelief as he brings his phone back to his ear. “I have an audience now? What if he rejects me?” The booming laughter starts again and Taehyung winces.

“Rejects him!” He hears from a voice that sounds suspiciously similar to Seokjin’s, followed by more laughter.

Jungkook giggles softly. “Hyung, I really don’t think you have anything to worry about.”

“Does it bring you joy seeing me in pain?” Taehyung mumbles.

“A little bit, yeah.” Jungkook responds, and Taehyung can almost see the smirk on his face. Little shit.

He lifts his head from the steering wheel, rubbing his dented forehead with a sleepy groan and his eyes widen at the sight before him.

The sun has just started peeking out from behind the horizon line, a golden glow washing over the secluded neighborhood before him. A light snow begins to fall onto the road, the street lights almost twinkling in the ambient yet calming atmosphere of the early morning.

It’s moments like this that made Taehyung really appreciate being alive. The simple pleasure of watching a sunrise in the early morning, the sound of his best friends laughing amongst each other over the phone, his car radio crackling quietly on a Christmas music station, and the anticipation of an impending confession sitting heavy in the pit of his stomach.

He’s going to tell Jimin that he’s in love with him. And yes, he’s terrified, but there’s nothing more representative of being human than being honest and vulnerable to the ones you love. And feeling human, the good and the bad parts, is what life is all about.

Taehyung smiles. He’s ready.

All things considered, Taehyung thinks he’s doing a pretty good job at not freaking out over his impulsive decision.

He’s been sitting in his car for approximately 2 and a half hours, distracting himself by singing Christmas carols and keeping Jungkook and the rest of the boys on the phone for the entirety of his festive concert.

Eventually, Taehyung hangs up, the boys wishing him good luck, and begins to mentally prepare himself. He unzips his overnight bag and rummages around to retrieve the 80’s Hits cassette, popping it into the boombox and stepping out of the car.

It snowed more than Taehyung was expecting, a light dusting turned into a couple of inches that crunches underneath his feet as he closes his car door behind him.

Taehyung knows Jimin better than he knows himself. He knows that on their days off, Jimin lets himself sleep in for a little longer, but not too long, usually setting his alarm to go off at 9 AM. Currently, it’s 8:44.

He looks at the front of Jimin’s house, a blanket of undisturbed snow covering the front lawn and lining the sidewalks. It’s a small and humble home, Jimin didn’t want to purchase anything too expensive since he doesn’t get to visit Busan that often due to their busy schedules. Taehyung had helped him pick this house out, claiming that it was small and cute just like you (which had earned him a playful hit to the arm from Jimin, but it was worth it).

Taehyung observes the snow on Jimin’s lawn and then glances at his phone to check the time. He still has about 15 minutes until Jimin’s alarm goes off, and the untouched snow is tempting him.

Why not go all out with this romantic gesture?

Using his foot to scrape a patch of snow off of the sidewalk, he carefully sets the boombox down and walks to Jimin’s front lawn where he begins to use his footprints to spell out a message in the snow.

Taehyung didn’t really think too much about his outfit before he left the dorm in a frenzy, so his Converse quickly become drenched with snow and his pajama bottoms follow suit. He’s too high on adrenaline to care about the cold wetness soaking into his socks, making his feet tingle with numbness.

He finishes the message and scrambles back to the sidewalk to admire his work, careful to avoid messing up the sloppy yet legible letters.

I’M IN LOVE WITH YOU, the footprints read. Simple, yet effective.

He thinks he might be going a little overboard, but hey, Jimin said he wanted a grand gesture, so that’s exactly what he’s going to get.

By the time he’s done writing his message, he anxiously checks his phone to see the time. 8:59 AM. He stares at the menacing number, heart pounding in his chest, and waits for it to change again.

9 AM.

It’s showtime, Taehyung thinks.

He picks up the heavy boombox, groaning under its weight, and before he can think twice, he cranks the volume up to the max level before pressing the play button and hoisting it over his head, staring up expectantly at Jimin’s bedroom window.

Peter Gabriel’s melodic voice pleasantly shatters the silence of the morning.

Love, I get so lost sometimes.

You could back out now, Taehyung’s brain supplies, it’s not too late.

Days pass and this emptiness fills my heart.

Taehyung grits his teeth under the weight of the boombox, muscles burning from exertion.

“How the hell did John Cusack do this?” he mumbles painfully.

Distantly in the back of his brain, he thinks about how grateful he is that Jimin’s nearest neighbor lives about a mile away because this boombox is louder than he expected.

When I want to run away, I drive off in my car.

You know, Peter Gabriel is making some solid points right now, Taehyung thinks. He too could drive off in his car and run away. It’s not too late, his brain frantically repeats to him, abort mission!

But whichever way I go, I come back to the place you are.

“Come on, Jiminie.” Taehyung groans, his arms shaking painfully. He keeps his eyes glued to the bedroom window, searching for any sign of movement.

Did he get the time wrong or something?

All my instincts, they return.

Suddenly, the curtains slowly draw back to reveal a sleepy Jimin, rubbing his eyes in confusion. He blinks a few times, looks down to take in the scene below his window, and his eyes widen comically.

Taehyung’s heart lurches, he is so in love with him.

And the grand facade, so soon will burn.

Jimin’s shocked eyes meet his own and he thinks he can see him mouth “Tae?” amidst his sleepy confusion, before the curtains quickly snap shut again.

What if he’s calling the cops, Taehyung’s unhelpful brain supplies. Oh god, he’s gonna tell the cops that there’s a deranged man standing on his front lawn with a stupid boombox over his head, this is officially the worst day of my life—

Taehyung snaps out of his panic when the front door to Jimin’s house is thrown open. Jimin steps out onto the front porch, house slippers on and a jacket lazily thrown over his shoulders. He rereads the message written in the snow, as if he can’t believe his eyes. Shifting his head, he meets eyes with Taehyung once again, as if silently asking him for an explanation.

Without a noise, without my pride.

“Jimin-ah,” Taehyung begins, “Can you come here?” he asks.

He’s not sure if Jimin heard him over the music at first, but he slowly complies and begins walking towards Taehyung, carefully avoiding the letters in the snow, until he stands in front of him, staring into his eyes expectantly.

I reach out from the inside.

“Jimin, I—” He takes a deep breath. “Surprise?” He says weakly, smiling sheepishly.

Wow, he really didn’t think this through.

“Tae, you’re shaking,” Jimin says quietly. He reaches up to grab the boombox and slowly brings it down until Taehyung is hugging it against his chest. The chorus of the song has begun, but he turns the volume down because he needs to be able to hear himself think.

“What is all of this?” Jimin asks, gesturing to the boombox and the lawn behind him. He still looks shocked, pushing his messy black hair out of his eyes and gazing deeply into Taehyung’s eyes, searching for an answer within them. “What’s going on?”

“Well, um—” Taehyung starts. “I don’t know if you remember but,” He pauses, attempting to collect his thoughts. Words, Taehyung, use your words. “Last week when we got drunk together, you said that you wanted someone to do some kind of grand romantic gesture for you, and well… this is my attempt at a grand romantic gesture.”

Jimin stares at him blankly. His expression seems guarded, as though he’s not entirely sure if Taehyung is being serious.

Taehyung laughs nervously. “The boombox idea is from the movie Say Anything…?” He searches Jimin’s face, looking for any sign of recognition. “John Cusack looked much cooler doing it though, I swear my arms were about to break, have you um—” He clears his throat. “Have you seen the movie?” He tries again.

“I’ve seen the movie, Tae.” Jimin glances behind him, running his wistful eyes over the message written in the snow once more, before turning back and fixing Taehyung with a serious expression. “Do you mean it?”

“Mean what?” Taehyung asks cluelessly, owlish eyes blinking in confusion.

“What you wrote in the snow.” Jimin blushes and looks down at his feet. “Do you mean it?” He repeats, a little softer this time.

Taehyung’s heart melts in understanding. He can’t believe Jimin would even question the fact that Taehyung is so, so head over heels in love with him. He thought he had been incredibly obvious.

Emotion overtaking him, Taehyung clutches the boombox closer to his chest with the overwhelming need to tell Jimin just how much he means to him. “Of course I mean it.” Jimin’s head snaps up, eyes filled with something that looks a lot like hope. “How could I not? Jimin, a part of me thinks that I’ve been in love with you ever since I first laid my eyes on you in high school.” Jimin’s eyes somehow get even wider, and Taehyung doesn’t know what to think about his lack of a response. “I’m sorry if this makes things uncomfortable between us,” He looks down at his feet. “It’s something I’ve been keeping to myself for far too long, and it was starting to eat me alive. It’s okay if you don’t like me back, Jimin. I promise I won’t mind, it won’t change anything between us. I mean yeah, it’ll hurt and I’ll probably cry a lot but—” Taehyung stops speaking abruptly when he hears a soft giggle. His head snaps up from his feet to see Jimin staring at him with a gaze filled with pure, unadulterated adoration.

“Taehyungie, slow down, it’s okay,” He rests his palms on comfortingly Taehyung’s shoulders and runs them down his arms until he reaches the boombox that’s still playing quiet music. Jimin wraps his hand around the handle of it and gently pries it out of Taehyung’s arms, setting it down onto the patch of sidewalk that he cleared earlier. Taehyung doesn’t know what to do with his arms now that he doesn’t have the boombox, so he takes Jimin’s hands in his own and takes a deep breath.

“Jimin, you’re my favorite person on the face of this planet. And I—I need you to know just how much you mean to me.” He tightens his hold on Jimin’s tiny hands and shoves his anxiety to the back of his mind, staring into his eyes. “I didn’t used to like the color blue.” He begins, and Jimin arches an eyebrow in confusion. “But now I love it because I know it’s your favorite color. And I used to hate romantic comedies, but now I love them and I even watch them on my own, but it’s never as fun when you’re not there—”

“Tae—” Jimin interrupts fondly.

“Wait, I’m not done.” Taehyung takes a deep breath and barrels on. “I seriously love The Notebook now because of you, Jiminie.” Jimin lets out a laugh at that, giving Tae’s hands a reassuring squeeze, urging him to continue. “And—And I love the little things about you too. I love hearing you sing in the shower when you think nobody is listening, I love when you fall off your chair when you laugh too hard, I love how caring you are, I love your eyes, your smile, and I love your hair no matter what color it is,” They both laugh softly, fondly. “I love you, Jimin.” He sniffles. “I love everything about you.”

Taehyung didn’t realize he was crying until Jimin’s hands find their way to his cheeks, delicately wiping away his tears with the pads of his thumbs.

“Don’t cry, baby.” He says softly. Taehyung’s heart swells three sizes at the pet name, and he blinks rapidly, taking in Jimin’s own appearance. His eyes brim with unshed tears, a fond smile stretched over his full lips.

“You have no idea how long I’ve been waiting to hear you say those words.” Jimin says, voice overcome with raw emotion.

Taehyung’s chest fills with hope. “I tell you I love you all the time.” He says softly.

Jimin shakes his head, taking Taehyung’s hands back into his own. “Not like that.” He says, and Taehyung nods in understanding.

“So you—” Taehyung sniffles. “You feel the same way?” He asks hopefully.

Jimin giggles, bringing his hands up to cup Taehyung’s cheeks. “I have for a long time.” He whispers. Jimin leans in, tilting his head to the right, presumably going in for a kiss, but Taehyung puts a hand on his chest to stop him.

“Wanna hear you say it,” Taehyung says softly, a blush evident on his cheeks.

Jimin laughs softly again, brushing his thumb over Taehyung’s cheekbones fondly.

“Always making me spell it out,” He says affectionately. “I love you.” He smiles. “I’m in love with you, I’ve been in love with you, and I think I’ll always be in love with you.”

They smile at each other, both overcome with such overwhelming happiness and love that it’s almost suffocating.

“God, you’re cheesy.” Taehyung teases.

Jimin scoffs with a blush and playfully hits his chest. “Yah! Who’s the one who showed up to my house with a boombox, for the love of—”

Taehyung cuts him off with a kiss, grabbing the collar of Jimin’s sweater and yanking him forward until their lips crash together.

It’s like a scene out of their very own romcom, something better than the both of them could’ve ever imagined. Snow falls from the grey skies in a gentle flurry, soft lips pressed firmly against each other. Like a tide washing up onto shore, Taehyung feels as though he’s finally found his home.

They pull back for air, and Taehyung opens his eyes to sneak a glance at Jimin, just to make sure that this isn’t a product of his overly active imagination. Taehyung’s fingers curl in the collar of Jimin’s sweater and Jimin huffs out a laugh, perfect smile on full display. He’s bare faced and his dark hair is still messy from sleep, but he’s the most beautiful person Taehyung has ever seen.

“God, you’re beautiful.” He whispers, admiring the blush that blooms on Jimin’s cheeks for a moment, before tugging him back into another soft kiss.

Jimin’s lips are warm against his own, and soft as they part to kiss him back. He makes a quiet sound in the back of his throat, and Taehyung wraps his arms around his waist, pulling him impossibly closer.

Jimin cups his right hand around Taehyung’s cheek, moving his left hand to wrap around the back of Taehyung’s neck, toying with a couple of long curls at his nape, as he angles his face to kiss him more deeply. They kiss like they’ve been waiting for this moment for their entire lives, and honestly, Taehyung doesn’t think that statement is too far from the truth. Even though he’s only known Jimin for 7 years, he doesn’t remember what his life was like before him, and he can’t imagine his life without him.

They pull away after god knows how long, and Jimin is smiling at him shyly, lips kissed pink.

“For the record,” Jimin starts. “I think you’re beautiful too.” He blushes.

Taehyung smiles bigger than he thought humanly possible, he is so infatuated with this man. “Good to know,” He says softly, leaning in for another kiss.

They exchange a single chaste kiss before Jimin pulls back, eyebrows furrowed in confusion. “Wait, I didn’t even ask you,” He blinks. “How did you even get here?”

“I drove,” Taehyung answers easily, leaning back in for another kiss, but Jimin stops him with a hand to the chest and Taehyung whines impatiently.

“You drove? Tae, that’s like a 4 hour drive.” He says incredulously, brows furrowed with concern. “What time did you leave the dorm?” He questions.

“Mmm,” Taehyung closes his eyes to think, the only thoughts on his mind being Jimin, Jimin, Jimin. “2 AM?” He says.

Jimin’s jaw drops. “Tae!” He hits his shoulder. “How much sleep did you even get?”

“2 hours?” Taehyung says bashfully.

“2 hours.” Jimin repeats, somehow he doesn’t look surprised. “And you sat out here until I woke up at 9 AM?”

“Mmm, yes.” Taehyung admits, blushing at the confession.

“Idiot,” He smiles fondly, wrapping his arms around Taehyung, bringing him into a warm hug.

Your idiot,” Taehyung mumbles against the soft fabric of Jimin’s sweater, inhaling his scent. Taehyung thinks he smells like home.

“Oh? Who’s the cheesy one now?” Jimin teases lovingly, pulling back to tap Taehyung on the nose playfully.

“Your fault,” Taehyung responds easily, cupping Jimin’s face with his hands. “This is entirely your doing, Jimin-ah. You’ve turned me into a lovesick sap, what do you have to say for yourself?”

“I can't say that I’m sorry,” Jimin playfully shrugs, leaning in to meet Taehyung halfway for another sweet kiss.

Their lips meet with gentle pressure and Jimin hooks his arms around Taehyung’s neck, pulling him closer and sucking on his bottom lip so sweetly that Taehyung’s legs feel weak from the soft sensation. His fingers tingle with a feeling he’s never experienced before as he gently cups Jimin’s cheeks to deepen the kiss, running both of his thumbs over his soft cheekbones.

Taehyung lets out a barely audible whimper as Jimin slips his tongue into his mouth, slowly licking and exploring as he hums in the back of his throat, enjoying the warmth of their tongues sliding against each other. Jimin’s right hand slides up the back of Taehyung’s neck and cards his fingers through his black curls, slightly tilting his head at an angle that makes Taehyung dizzy.

“Jimin,” Taehyung breathes out unsteadily, pulling away only to trail soft kisses along Jimin’s jawline and down the side of his neck. Jimin tilts his head to the side to give the younger better access, sighing in contentment and pleasure.

“Yeah?” He exhales, eyes closed as Taehyung kisses the sensitive spot right beneath his ear.

Taehyung giggles softly, nuzzling his face into Jimin’s shoulder. “‘M just really happy,” he says, warm breath cascading over Jimin’s collarbone, providing temporary relief from the frigid morning air.

Jimin smiles fondly, heart clenching with overwhelming emotion. He tightens his fingers in Taehyung’s hair and pulls his head up gently, his smile growing wider when he sees his swollen lips.

“I’m really happy too,” he grins, both of them staring at each other with pure adoration before once again brushing their lips together.

Taehyung doesn’t think he’ll ever get tired of kissing Jimin. He curls his fingers around Jimin’s back, the fabric of his jacket getting bunched up in his fists as he loses himself in the kiss. Jimin is so warm, soft, and gentle, but at the same time so tantalizing and intoxicating. It makes him breathless and unsteady on his feet, desperate for more. All those nights Taehyung had spent daydreaming about this moment didn’t even compare to how perfect the real experience was.

They kiss for a while, only coming to an abrupt halt when they hear the sound of a camera shutter going off.

They pull away from each other, eyes wide with shock as they whip around at the same time.

Jungkook sits in the passenger seat of Seokjin’s car, parked parallel to the curb, windows rolled down, and phone in his hand as he grins widely at them.

“You didn’t turn your shutter sound off? Idiot!” Seokjin exclaims in disbelief from the driver’s seat.

An argument breaks out within the car, Namjoon, Yoongi, and Hoseok joining in from the cramped back row.

“At least I had the guts to take the photo! All of you were too scared, you should be thanking—”

“You made us look like creeps, Jungkook—”

“Did the photo turn out nice? Jungkook-ah, let me see the—”

“What the hell is going on?” Taehyung asks, affronted, taking in the scene before him.

A moment of silence.

“We come bearing gifts!” Jungkook yells, holding up a huge paper bag that appears to be filled with take out.

“Don’t forget the soju,” Hoseok whispers from the back seat, passing another bag up to the front which Jungkook grabs and shows to the stunned couple who are still standing in the middle of the snow in confusion.

“We also come bearing soju!” He frantically shakes the bag in his hand, bottles clinking together inside.

More silence.

“Why are you—” Taehyung shakes his head in perplexity. “How are you here right now?”

“I thought you drove yourself here, Taehyungie.” Jimin said, eyebrows furrowed in obvious confusion.

“I did,” He points to where his car is parked in front of Jimin’s lawn and then turns back to Jungkook. “How are you here right now?” He repeats himself.

Jungkook laughs uncomfortably. “Well, after you left to drive to Busan I ended up going back to sleep for 2 hours. But then I woke up at 4 am and had an epiphany.”

Taehyung waits for him to continue, arching an eyebrow when he doesn’t.

“Well? What was the epiphany?”

“Oh,” Jungkook continues, smiling. “I realized that I needed to see this confession with my own two eyes.”

Taehyung groans and buries his head into his hands in embarrassment as the rest of the car bursts into laughter. He feels Jimin’s hand slide up his back, rubbing comforting circles in between his shoulder blades.

“I can’t believe I had a live audience,” Taehyung mumbles, sound muffled from his hands covering his face. “But wait,” he looks up in realization. “The milkshakes?”

Jungkook laughs sheepishly. “Oh yeah, those. You kinda called us during our McDonald’s pitstop.”

“So you weren’t actually at the dorm making milkshakes? You were—”

“Halfway to Busan, yup.” Jungkook confirms.

“Jeon Jungkook, I’m going to kill you.” Taehyung warns as he walks towards the car in long purposeful strides.

The rest of the boys start yelling in panic but Jungkook quickly grabs the take out bag and hoists it out the window, using his hands to waft the scent into Taehyung’s direction.

“We brought japchae!” He speaks frantically. “Smell it, Tae, doesn’t it smell so good?”

“Jungkook, he’s not a dog—” Yoongi starts.

Taehyung stops in his tracks as the scent reaches his nostrils, instantly succeeding in making him calmer. “It does smell really good.”

“For fuck’s sake.” Yoongi mumbles, defeated.

“Why don’t we all just calm down, go inside, and watch some Christmas movies while we eat? We drove such a long way, we’re all tired, it’s cold, let’s just chill out, okay?” Namjoon reasons as his leader tendencies shine through, he’s always the mediator of the group.

“Yeah, hyung.” Jungkook opens his car door and steps out, the rest of the members following suit. “We’ll only stay for one night and then drive back home tomorrow. Then you and Jiminie will have the place all to yourselves to do whatever you want.” He gives a suggestive wink.

Jimin blushes and Taehyung lunges for Jungkook who lets out a shriek and almost drops the food. Chaos breaks out amongst the group once more.

“Enough, enough!” Namjoon yells. “Everyone inside!” He uses his hands to usher the group towards Jimin’s house, the bickering continuing all the way up to the front door.

As Taehyung begins to walk after the group, he feels a gentle tug at his shirt sleeve and turns to see Jimin smiling fondly at him.

“What?” Taehyung asks, already breaking out into a smile of his own.

Jimin just grins wider and leans forward to press a chaste kiss to Taehyung’s lips.

“I love you,” He whispers, pushing Taehyung’s bangs off of his forehead to press a second kiss on the space in between his eyebrows.

Taehyung’s heart feels like it’s going to explode from endearment.

“I love you too,” He whispers, reveling in the way Jimin’s eyes sparkle at his words.

Jimin holds his hand out and Taehyung happily grasps it in his own, squeezing a few times for good measure before they begin walking to the front door of the house, hands swinging leisurely between them.

“Ah, wait.” Taehyung says, suddenly stopping in his tracks.

“What’s the matter?” Jimin questions, eyebrows furrowed in concern.

Taehyung wordlessly pulls Jimin by his hand, leading them back towards the sidewalk as he leans down to pick up the boombox. There’s a light dusting of snow on the top of it and the 80’s Hits cassette is still playing softly.

“Almost forgot this,” Taehyung says, smiling sheepishly as he hoists the boombox up to hold in his left hand.

Jimin giggles. “I guess I can cross the grand romantic gesture off of my romance bucket list.” He smiles.

“Was it everything you wished for?” Taehyung asks.

“Everything I wished for and more,” Jimin says, pulling on Taehyung’s hand so that they can begin walking to the front of the house once more. “You know,” he begins. “You really outdid yourself with the message in the snow.”

Taehyung throws his head back and laughs loudly, the joyful sound echoing in the stillness of the morning.

“I’m glad I did it, then.” Taehyung says, giddy. “I’m sorry it took me so long to tell you, though.” His smile dims a bit, thinking about all of the time they’ve lost from dancing around their feelings.

“Hey, none of that.” Jimin lets go of Taehyung’s hand to put his arm around his shoulder, rubbing up and down in a soothing motion. “We have the rest of our lives to make up for lost time.”

Taehyung smiles brighter than he thought humanly possible, leaning in to press a sweet kiss to Jimin’s cheek and nuzzling his head into his shoulder.

Light snow continues to fall softly, covering the roads and sidewalks with a blanket of white. The five boys quarrel at the front of the house as they open the door, attempting to push through the frame all at once with the bags of food and soju in hand. It’s a beautiful yet chaotic morning and Taehyung wouldn’t change a thing about any of it. He’s surrounded by the people he loves most and he couldn’t be happier.

Kim Taehyung was unsure of many things in his life.

But as he hears his group members playfully bickering and sees Jimin’s eyes shining with love and happiness beside him, he’s certain that he’s right where he belongs.

In your eyes, I am complete.