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“I’m home.”

“You’re also late,” Moonjo’s voice carries through the apartment. “Was your taxi held up in traffic?”

Jongwoo saunters into the kitchen where Moonjo’s leafing through a book of recipes with disinterest. “No,” he says on a breath. “I walked home.”

“In the rain?” Moonjo perks up.

Jongwoo pulls the fridge open and scans its contents quietly. He waits for Moonjo to smell the blood on him, or to actually look at the state he’s in.

Moonjo goes still halfway through turning a page. He stands upright and turns to Jongwoo, who takes a bloody hold of the apple juice carton and lifts it to his mouth, eyes closing.

There’s a long pause before he hears Moonjo hum, quiet and noncommittal. “I see,” He doesn’t sound pleased. He’s so calm that Jongwoo knows he’s livid.

Slowly and without a word, he turns and leaves the kitchen.

Jongwoo nearly rolls his eyes at the dramatics but doesn’t make any effort to stop him, wiping the back of his hand over his mouth. He’ll chill out eventually.

“Don’t you want to know?” he asks once he leaves the shower. He stops drying his hair and flings the towel onto the bed.

Moonjo ignores him, eyes fixed on the book in his hand; a novel Jongwoo bought a few weeks ago but hasn’t gotten around to reading yet. He hasn’t been in the right mindset lately.

There’s a fixed scowl on Moonjo’s face, the same one he sports when Jongwoo forces him to eat actual food or when Jongwoo tells him totake him out then proceeds to add exactly where he wants to go so Moonjo doesn’t get ahead of himself and start packing weapons. Jongwoo likes the way he snips that wide, manic grin in the bud only to replace it with whatever that pucker is he’s looking at right now.

Jongwoo stops in front of the mirror. “Are you mad?”

Moonjo licks his thumb and turns the page.

“Don’t lick my books,” Jongwoo states.

Moonjo’s lips twitch, but he otherwise says nothing, keeping his focus entirely on what he’s reading.

Jongwoo doesn’t have another stab at placating him. He grabs the brush from the dresser and runs it through his hair.

He gets it. He gets why Moonjo’s so pissed. He’s been trying to stain Jongwoo’s hands in blood for months, and now that Jongwoo’s broken his murder celibacy, Moonjo wasn’t even around to witness it.

“Who was it?”

Jongwoo blinks out of his thoughts. “What?”

“The man you killed,” Moonjo doesn’t look up, but it’s obvious he isn’t reading anymore.

Jongwoo continues combing his hair. “How do you know it was a man?” he asks, just to draw it out. He likes exciting Moonjo until he runs out of patience.

“I know you like I know the back of my hand, darling,” Moonjo lifts his gaze without lifting his head. “Why did you kill him?”

Jongwoo slams the comb down on the dresser. “Do you need a reason to kill?”

Moonjo said it himself. Back then. Jongwoo’s just throwing his words back at him.

Moonjo hums, leaning his head back against the headboard. “You do. I can only imagine what finally broke your back.”

Jongwoo can’t refute the claim. Because it’s true. He starts brushing his hair again. “Mr. Kwan.”

Moonjo’s brows rise. “Mr. Kwan?” He echoes back. “The man next door?”

“Yes,” Jongwoo answers. “First he got mad about the cat, then there’s that shitty violin—

“Viola, darling.”

Jongwoo looks at him through the mirror, unimpressed with his interruption. “I cleaned up after myself,” he says a moment later. “We never fought the guy, the police won’t suspect us.”

“Are you sure you didn’t leave—”

“Don’t,” Jongwoo slices in. “Don’t doubt me,” he breathes out heavily.

Moonjo looks at him for a short while. “He reminded you of your former boss,” he eventually says. “Didn’t he?”

Jongwoo’s eyes meet Moonjo’s through the mirror and Moonjo sets the book aside to climb out of bed and approach him. He wraps his arms around Jongwoo’s waist from behind and latches on until Jongwoo stops trying to shove him off. “How did it feel?”

“Okay,” Jongwoo answers. “Okay. Fine. It felt fine.”

It felt more than okay. More than fine. It felt good. It felt so damn good to put that man in his place that Jongwoo’s fingers are starting to itch for a re-kill.

Moonjo grins. “Good,” he murmurs. “I’m glad you had fun.”

“Were you expecting another reason?” Jongwoo asks, rolling his head back against his shoulder to give him room. “A wounded ego? Spite? Jealousy?” the last word is just a tease, albeit said with a tone too serious.

Moonjo kisses the side of his neck. Once and twice. “What are you talking about?”

“Jieun,” Jongwoo spells out.

“Ah, her,” Moonjo breathes against the skin covering Jongwoo’s pulse. The word sounds sour to Jongwoo’s ears. “Her case was an anomaly. I don’t like those who don’t appreciate what they have.”

“Seokyun?”

“Who?” Moonjo stops his ministrations and looks up to meet Jongwoo’s eye through the mirror. Realization crosses his features and he tuts his tongue once. “Oh, the boy who rented across the hall?”

Jongwoo lifts his head to cock a brow at him, lips pulled into a thin, unamused line. “You know that’s who I’m talking about."

Moonjo ducks his head again and presses his smile to the juncture between Jongwoo’s shoulder and neck. “Ah, well. You were just an excuse, darling,” he mumbles into the soft, damp skin. “Hearing his late-night practice left me fantasizing about his murder.”

Jongwoo shouldn’t– he shouldn’t smile. He shouldn’t be smiling. Let alone laughing. Seokyun was his friend. And yet. There’s something about Moonjo’s flippancy that tugs treacherously at the corner of his lips and has him huffing a semi-amused breath from his nose before he attempts a glare through the mirror.

It doesn’t go unnoticed. Nothing ever does with Moonjo. “You just laughed,” he says. Something in his tone says it isn’t open to debate.

Jongwoo reaches for the pair of scissors. “No, I didn’t.”

“You did,” Moonjo taunts. “You never liked him, did you? He was just a bit of normalcy to you.”

Jongwoo scoffs. “Don’t get on my nerves while I’m holding something sharp. You remember what happened last time.”

“Last time you missed.”

“This time I won’t.”

Moonjo chuckles. “Do it again.”

“Attempt your murder?”

“Laugh.”

“No.”

Moonjo reaches up and strokes his fingers through Jongwoo’s hair. “Why don’t you grow it out?” he wonders aloud.

Jongwoo drops all indication of humor, glare hardening into something that makes Moonjo react the way any other person wouldn’t. The way only he would. A small smile and a tilt of his head.

Jongwoo’s jaw clenches tight, a muscle ticking in his cheek. “Do you think I’m him?”

Moonjo blinks, unfazed by the tone.

“I’m not him," Jongwoo asserts. “I’m not you.”

“I know that, darling,” Moonjo concurs.

“I’m not yours,” Jongwoo adds for good measure. He’s drawing a line and daring Moonjo to step a toe out of it.

Moonjo lets it sink in. His mouth does a thing, like he’s tasting the words. Letting them settle on his tongue. “But I’m yours.”

Jongwoo. He rarely shows emotion. Moonjo’s used to it. He doesn’t mind it. He likes it, really. Adores it and adores Jongwoo. Wholly. Inside out. But after the words leave his lips, there’s a hitch in Jongwoo’s feel, barely there but there. Jongwoo knows it and he allows it. He turns around in Moonjo’s hold and looks up at him.

The tight line of his mouth loosens and the creases between his brows smoothes out as he casts his eyes over Moonjo’s features. “I know,” he says at last, a little more breathlessly, he repeats, “I know.”

Then he reaches for Moonjo’s hand and places the pair of scissors in it. “Cut it for me.”

Moonjo looks taken aback by the demand. But understanding soon washes over when Jongwoo lifts his hand and takes a strand of Moonjo’s hair between his fingers. “Ok?”

The implication isn’t lost on Moonjo. He closes his hand around the tool. “Anything for you, jagi.”

Jongwoo takes a seat on the edge of their bed and watches Moonjo slide his fingers through the rings of the scissors.

An exhilarated breath rushes out of him on the first snip and once Moonjo starts, he doesn’t stop. He’s skilled with the scissors. Of course he is. He’s a doctor and he’s a murderer but there’s something about seeing him use his dexterity to please Jongwoo that makes him feel almost godly.

With shorter hair, Moonjo looks… emphasized. Surreal. Jongwoo could blame his infatuation with him, but Moonjo’s good looks drew his attention since before he knew him. Since the first time he saw him up on the roof. He remembers doing a double take, too taken aback by Moonjo’s charm and come-hither eyes. Right now, it seems like so, so long ago.

He’s gentled out of his thoughts with a finger under his chin and he lifts his head to look at Moonjo, fresh out of a haircut.

Normally, Jongwoo would hate this position. Back then, before Moonjo had spun him up in a cocoon and nurtured him into what he is now, he would’ve looked down or away. Now, he’d break the kneecaps of anybody who dared look down at him.

But Moonjo isn’t anybody.

Jongwoo blinks. “It looks nice,” he comments, going for nonchalant.

Moonjo drops. His knees hit the carpeted floor. Nothing, not praise, not murder, not even reading the climax of his favorite book will ever hold a candle to seeing a man as powerful as Moonjo on his knees.

Jongwoo isn’t a tactile person but Moonjo is. Because he’s touch-starved. So touch-starved that the first time they’d fucked, Jongwoo had mouthed at the scar on his neck, then the ones on his body and had him coming without any stimulation.

Moonjo likes being touched and loved on. It’s something so in conflict with his murderous tendencies – so fucking human – it makes Jongwoo wonder if he’s worse than him for not craving it as much.

Moonjo untucks the towel from around his waist and Jongwoo kisses him. Tangles his fingers in his hair and keeps kissing him, breathes and sighs into it as Moonjo reaches down between them to stroke him to hardness.

And when Moonjo makes to lower his head between his thighs, Jongwoo’s hand clenches in his hair, stopping him. “Slow,” he breathes. “Go slow.”

Moonjo pauses for a moment before breathing out. His lips brush the soft skin of Jongwoo’s neck, scrape lightly across it as Jongwoo cards his fingers through his hair.

He presses his smile to Jongwoo’s collarbone, taking his time now that he finally has permission to map out Jongwoo’s body the way he’s been wanting to for so long.

He slides his hands up Jongwoo’s thighs to rest them steadily on his waist as he drags his mouth down to his chest. Kisses his nipple and runs the flat of his tongue over it.

It’s.. new. Foreign in the most pleasurable way. Sexual intimacy with Moonjo took a long time to get used to after what went down at Eden. For a while, Jongwoo didn’t let him so much as step a foot in the same room as him.

Days passed. Then weeks. Then Jongwoo got used to Moonjo’s silent presence in the kitchen.

The first time they slept in the same bed, Jongwoo had had a nightmare; one that Moonjo crooned him out of with whispers of his name and tender hands on his face. Back then, Jongwoo didn’t know he was capable of tenderness.

Obviously, Jongwoo’s initial reaction was to shove him off with a spat out stay the fuck away from me. Then he’d buried his face in his hands and calmed himself the way he had ever since he was discharged.

It was silent after that. Jongwoo didn’t tell Moonjo to fuck off. He didn’t tell him to stay either. He lied down and Moonjo waited a few minutes before he lied down beside him, careful not to touch.

Their first kiss was out of spite. Jongwoo had kissed him, hard and angry and unrequited. He’d pulled back, wiped the back of his hand over his mouth like he was erasing Moonjo’s traces off. It was anger aimed at himself for starting to forgive. Starting to long for. Somewhere along the way, he’d stopped worrying about his desire for a man and focused on exactly which man he was aching for.

Moonjo had kissed him seconds later. It felt good.

So they kissed for a long time and things went south from there.

It feels good now too. There’s no hint of hatred. Or shame or guilt or spite.

Moonjo bites on his nipple and has him hissing. “Fuck.”

“Sorry,” Moonjo murmurs smugly, sounding anything but. He dips his head to kiss each one of Jongwoo’s intercostal spaces, thumbs soothing circles into his skin.

When Jongwoo’s patience wears threadbare, he guides him down to where he needs him most.

A breath trembles out of him when long fingers wrap around his length. “Come on,” he lets out, using his hold on Moonjo’s head to urge him on.

Moonjo complies, ducking his head to wrap his mouth around him and hold for a few moments, jaw accommodating his width before he’s sucking wetly.

Jongwoo’s legs spread, a hand brushing through Moonjo’s hair before tightening into a fist. He moves him on his cock, air rushing in and out of him in heavy, barely restrained huffs. “You,” he breathes. He lowers his other hand to cup Moonjo’s jaw and feel his shape in his cheek.

Moonjo’s hand slides out of view. Down his pants. Jongwoo can see his arm move and can hear the slick sound of skin on skin over the sound of him slobbering on his dick.

“Are you touching yourself?” He questions.

Moonjo doesn’t respond, but his hand speeds up. He likes Jongwoo’s voice when he’s like this. Trying (and failing) to keep himself under control.

“He begged,” Jongwoo utters, doing his damnedest to keep his tone in check.

Moonjo stops moving, head and hand stilling for just a moment before he realizes what Jongwoo’s talking about.

“I beat him bloody,” Jongwoo’s chest heaves, his words leaving him all chopped up. “Something so exciting…” he trails off, letting his mouth hang open when Moonjo’s mouth clasps tighter around him. “So exciting about seeing him struggle,” he says on a rushed breath.

Moonjo moans around him, vibrations travelling in waves up Jongwoo’s spine.

“You wouldn’t know. You sedate them.”

Moonjo digs the nails of his free hand into the skin of Jongwoo’s thigh in warning, daring him to mock his method of kill one more time.

“Ah, did I hurt your pride?”

And Moonjo’s about to get rough, Jongwoo knows. He’s about to push him down and wrap his hands around his neck and tell him to enjoy the struggle.

He doesn’t give him the chance to. “It felt so fucking good,” he slurs, falling back against the sheets. The book Moonjo had cast aside earlier digs into his back but he can’t spare it a thought with the way Moonjo tongues into his slit. He snaps his hips up.

Moonjo releases him all at once and Jongwoo doesn’t have the time to protest, not when he’s being pushed back and mounted.

Moonjo pushes his pants down, pulling himself out to wrap his hand around the both of them. “How did you end him?” he asks heatedly, question verging on a growl.

“Mmn,” Jongwoo reaches down to cover Moonjo’s hand. “Tore his neck open. The way I did to you.”

Moonjo kisses him, hot and dirty and too wet as he rolls his tongue over his. He pulls away to press their foreheads together. “Look at us,” his eyes are directed down between them. “Darling, look.”

Jongwoo looks down at their hands and their dicks and their hips. It’s perfect. The friction, the heat. Too perfect. “We fit so well,” Moonjo grunts.

Jongwoo looks back up at him, eyes not leaving his as he speeds their joined hands up.

Moonjo kisses the corner of his mouth, his cheek, breathes against his ear as his hand tightens around them. “You were made for me.”

Jongwoo can respond to that. He has a snarky response along the lines of you shaped me and made sure I fit you.

He does. He has a retort that’ll make Moonjo’s eyes sparkle and his lips pull into a smirk.

But he can’t voice it.

“Darling, I love you.”

Jongwoo comes and Moonjo strokes him through it, cum staining the spasming muscle of his abdomen. Moonjo’s name leaves him belatedly, choked with pleasure and need as he tries and fails to chase Moonjo’s mouth.

Even as he rides his high, he manages to push Moonjo’s hand away and wrap his own around him to bring him to completion.

He tries touching as much of Moonjo as possible, his other hand cupping his nape. It’s better like this, exposed. Vulnerable.

Jongwoo presses Moonjo’s face to his own neck and keeps him there.

He can’t say it back. Not because he doesn’t feel the same way. Not because he’s not sure of his feelings. He just can’t give Moonjo that sort of power over him, not yet.

“Mine,” he says instead. “You’re mine.”

Moonjo’s hips stutter. “Darling— please. Jongwoo..”

Jongwoo strokes a thumb over the tender skin of his neck, over a cigarette burn that should’ve faded over the past two decades.

Moonjo bucks into the circle of his fingers, matching each one of his strokes until he’s releasing, a groan rumbling through his chest and into the skin of Jongwoo’s neck.

They flame out together, breathing until one is inhaling and the other’s exhaling. Almost as one being.

Moonjo blindly pats around for the discarded towel to wipe them both clean before rolling off Jongwoo and onto his back.

He smiles to himself, speaking up after a while. “Have I ever told you I love that backbone of yours? Kihyuk used to get scared to talk back.”

Jongwoo’s jaw tightens until he’s sure he might chip a molar. He doesn’t say anything though. Settling for silent resentment.

“How would you kill him?” Moonjo turns on his side. “If I hadn’t.”

“You already got off,” Jongwoo says back. He leans over him to turn off the light on his bedside table. “Go to sleep.”

Moonjo fits against him from behind, cheek to cheek. “How’s your novel coming along, darling?” He asks after a few clock-ticks of quiet.

Jongwoo hums on a breath, already bone-tired and dozing off. “It’s writing itself.”