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even monsters can love

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Jong-woo was in the haze of sleep, the verge of a dream inviting him in. But the ding of his phone pulled him out. Blinking the dregs of sleep out of his eyes, Jong-woo reached for his phone.

He felt frigid, only to realize his source of warmth wasn’t in bed with him.

A simple text beckoning him out. Not more than that. Jong-woo recognized the number despite the lack of a name to go with it. He threw his phone aside, more preoccupied with sleep rather than the whims of Seo Moon-jo.

But. A part of Jong-woo was curious. He eyed his phone a while before getting up and grabbing his jacket to bear the chilly air.

Jong-woo took sharp and steady steps down the stairs of the apartment he shared with Moon-jo. It was a fancy place that Jong-woo probably would have never seen nor lived in his lifetime if it weren’t for Moon-jo.

Once Jong-woo was outside, the sharp air bit him harshly. Jong-woo silently cursed Moon-jo for enticing him this late into the night.

His phone pinged again.

Go to the garden.

And so Jong-woo did. The Garden was right behind their apartment complex, it was a small thing for the general enjoyment of the residents. Jong-woo spent plentiful afternoons in the garden with novels of various sorts, intent upon using his free time for his lone hobby.

Ah, the perks of using your serial killer boyfriend’s endless bank account to fuel a life of an artist. Jong-woo never knew that dentistry was such a lucrative field, he smirked a little at his sardonic thoughts.

Jong-woo supposes he should feel a little more shame upon being financially dependent upon Moon-jo. But if he asked Moon-jo for anything in the world, Seo Moon-jo would only ask if he wanted anything else.

The power he held over the man was sweet and destructive. Jong-woo thoroughly enjoyed it. And Moon-jo enjoyed the fact that Jong-woo enjoyed it.

So lost in his thoughts, Jong-woo didn’t notice the presence of Moon-jo behind him. With a startled gasp, Jong-woo felt Moon-jo wrap his arms around him and kissed the edge of his neck. Warm pleasure thrummed down Jong-woo’s spine.

At the beginning of their affair, Moon-jo’s sudden desire for affection threw Jong-woo off. A contrast from the man who harmed him for the sake of bringing his true self out.

He remembered being discharged with Moon-jo right by his side. The first couple of days, he would constantly linger at the fringes of Jong-woo’s space, never asking but wanting.

With equal parts irritation and fondness, Jong-woo allowed Moon-jo to invade and more.

Affections that were stumbling and strangely vulnerable. Then again, Jong-woo thinks Moon-jo has never truly loved. Until now that is.

Just as Moon-jo taught Jong-woo the finer details of death, Jong-woo taught him the finer details of love.

Jong-woo turned around and faced Moon-jo. “Surprised me there,” said Jong-woo. “but still, this late at night?”

“I was feeling somewhat romantic tonight. I thought I would surprise you with something rather...” Moon-jo pauses, searching for the right word. “Fun, I suppose.”

“Fun?” Questioned Jong-woo, intrigued.

“Yes, now shall we,” Moon-jo guided Jong-woo towards the back crevices of the garden. There laid a body, or at least the hollows of one.

A burnt body.

Jong-woo didn’t favor fire all that much in his kills, but Moon-jo did. But only for those that truly seethed him to no end.

“Oh, and who is this?” Jong-woo asked, wrinkling his nose from the abhorred scent of burnt flesh and hair. He just knows that the smell will linger on Moon-jo for a while, the likelihood of cuddles in the near future seemed slim for him.

Moon-jo smiled, “someone from your past. He wore glasses and had a stutter. You hated him with a passion if I recall correctly. I found him scampering around a bar. He was stalking a rather pretty lady. Or at least a rather feeble attempt at stalking.”

Jong-woo frowned and mulled over Moon-jo’s words. Glasses with a stutter?

“Ah! Park Byeong-Min?” Jong-woo exclaimed, he forgot about that pest. “Never thought I’d see him again - but you could have at least invited me though.” Jong-woo would have thoroughly enjoyed the kill.

Unlike Moon-jo, Jong-woo thinks he would have favored pulling Byeong-Min’s tongue out for all his irritating comments at work. Gouging his eyes out would have been a plus for all the poorly concealed gazes at women.

“Don’t worry Jagiya, I have tape recordings. You can still enjoy the kill; I know you hate fire, but I couldn’t resist.” Moon-jo appeased Jong-woo with a tilt of his phone. Jong-woo smiled, slightly pleased to enjoy some of it at least. Still, tape recordings are fun for revisiting but they could never compare to the real thing.

Moon-jo bent down, his briefcase settled down by Park Byeong-Min’s desecrated body. He popped it open and within his tools, he pulled out a small plastic bag with a singular tooth. “A souvenir, Jagyia. To further make up for missing the fun.”

Jong-woo took it and admired the tooth underneath the moon. Another one for their collection. “Which Tooth is this? The Canine?” Guessed Jong-woo. It was a game between them after their kills. Jong-woo would always try to guess the teeth’ names and Moon-jo answered with amusement.

“Yes, a point for you then, Jagiya.” Said Moon-jo, “now then, should I turn this lovely little thing into a ring for you?”

“I rather you didn’t, I don’t want his teeth on me,” Jong-woo said dryly.

Moon-jo laughed, low and soft with the ripple of love evident. A laugh that a serial killer shouldn’t have. But then again, who said monsters couldn’t love.

With a quick peck on Moon-jo’s cheek, Jong-woo tugged him back into the warmth of their home. He can clear the body in the early springs of the morning, right now Jong-woo wanted nothing more than to thank him for his lovely treat.

Of course, Moon-jo happily conceded.