"And that is how you successfully file a parking ticket and look smoking hot. Are these pants too tight?" Seokjin asks, after half squatting to put a simple parking ticket on a simple white Hyundai whose meter had expired and Jimin doesn't know about Seokjin, but his own pants certainly feel much tighter. He kind of stutters and Seokjin seems more than pleased with that articulate reply.
It's a mildly cold early morning in the outskirts of Seoul, and Jimin, who has recruited himself in the police workforce to serve his country and citizens and totally not just to get enough hours of community service so that it looks good on his resume, is currently learning how to file parking tickets, which isn't the most interesting of jobs so his supervisor and pretty neighbor who suggested he get into the force in the first place devised a method to make it more fun. Jimin is kind of sure Seokjin hyung's actual job is to make Jimin's life (and pants) much harder, than actually do the heroic job of writing parking tickets.
The morning passes slower than Seoul's rush hour traffic and it isn't until Jimin notices something truly incriminating, that he's never seen all in his 2 hours and a Starbucks coffee of having this job.
"Hyung," Jimin breathes out, "they've parked halfway on the sidewalk!" They're at a pretty sketchy part of the city, but that's just unacceptable.
"That's just unacceptable." Seokjin remarks, after filing a hefty fine because that car was not only illegally parked but it's license plate was unregistered and it looked too beat up to be drivable. "We're saving lives here, Jiminie."
"Hey hyung, do you think this car belongs to those large threatening looking men making their way towards us, with very specific gang sign tattoos on their arms?" Jimin asks curiously.
"Nah, I don't thi--oh shit, JIMIN RUN."
Now Jimin might have been a cop for 2 hours now (he's actually still a trainee, he doesn't even have a uniform yet but whatever) but he totally knows that you never leave your ground in the face of danger. All those action movies have really taught him something valuable. He stands his ground bravely, while Seokjin hyung insistently pushes him to go, because he knows something truly badass is going to happen now. He's taken a taekwondo class before, he's totally prepared. Well, actually he saw a YouTube video for taekwondo self defense... Which he got bored watching 2 minutes into and switched to Exid's 'Up and Down Dance Tutorial' instead, which is just as powerful.
The two men looked similar, except one had a mole on his neck and the other had a dragon tattoo on his arm, which is totally inconspicuous. Jimin resorted to call them Mole Rat and The Man With The Dragon Tattoo in his head, and god did they look mad. It's an understandable reaction, Jimin would've been pissed too if someone had put a million won fine on his car, as well.
Seokjin hyung looked a little less in his element though, when Mole Rat read his ID out loud. "Officer Jin, is it? Ohoho, we have orders for your pretty head, don't we?"
"Listen guys, we can resolve this amongst us, right? A time one favour, and I'll remove all the fines. That's a fair deal right?" He asks nervously looking from one big guy to the other, and the Man With The Dragon Tattoo scratches his neck.
"Get. In." Mole Rat grits, pointing to the broken car.
Jimin wants to ask why doesn't Seokjin hyung just arrest them before he realizes they are traffic police, they don't have guns or tasers! The most dangerous material they have on them is their pen. Panic starts to swell in Jimin's stomach because fuck, they're gonna die. Jimin used to think he's too pretty to die young but if these thugs are willing to harm Seokjin, then Jimin's dead meat as well. Why did he chose to become a police officer, he should've just finished university like any other 22 year old and now he's gonna die and he won't even be awarded any shiny medals for it because he hasn't even finished his training period!
"Okay, but let him go, he's just a civilian, he's not involved in this. You know how much red tape that'd involve," Seokjin reasons and Jimin is oddly touched, but Thick and Thicker Headed don't listen to reason and push them inside.
"Boss Man's orders." Mole Rat grunts out, and wow they haven't cleaned this car since forever. Jimin gingerly sits on the leathery seats that look like they're gonna fall apart any moment.
"Won't Boss Man be pissed at being awakened for such a trivial matter, it's barely noon. Surely we can work this out." And wow, Jimin is totally impressed at how coolly Seokjin hyung is taking this, he even knows Mafia lords, damn. Maybe he wasn't lying when he said traffic police are the most important of them all.
Mole Rat closes the door and TMWTDT revs up the engine after 3 tries, which leaves no room for argument.
However, after Seokjin hyung negotiated to have the radio turned on (because it'd be really inconvenient if they started screaming during a traffic stop and people started intervening), having Girls Generation blasting through the car's shitty radios and having Seokjin hyung's hand rest on Jimin's thigh reassuringly, he can't say meeting a crime lord and potential death could be that bad for the first day on the job.
Seokjin is kind of nervous. He doesn't let it show though, because he's a professional. He's calm and confident and no, his leg isn't jittery at all, thanks very much. Still, he has to be strong for Jimin, the poor boy who's been dragged along this mess because of him.
Because right now they're both being taken to an ominous grey building, in an abandoned freak fire accident where the 10 buildings of cheap clothing workshop was burned down in the dead of the night a few years back. Under the government, this place is sealed off because a lot of the blame game and what caused the fire and political inferences still haunt this place, while unofficially everyone knows that one of South Korea's most notorious arsonists and crime syndicate resides here. Jimin has no doubt at least heard about this, and the poor kid looks terrified. Seokjin grips his hand tighter, why is it always the cute ones?
When they stand before the large black doors that lead to the main hall, and ugh it's so dark and gritty it fits the whole 'corrupt' aesthetic... For a boyband's evil concept music video. Seokjin turns to Jimin, trying to not be aware of the multiple guards surrounding them.
"Okay, let hyung do all the talking, all right?" Seokjin looks him in the eye and smiles, "You just stand there and look pretty, okay? Standing and looking pretty has saved my life many-a time, don't underestimate it." Jimin nods fervently, and Seokjin pats his cheek before taking a deep breath, mustering courage and waits for the door to be opened.
Seokjin can't put into words just how much he doesn't want to do this, but taking Jimin by the hand, he walks straight ahead with his head held high, confident, unafraid and beautiful, ready for face the man sitting in the middle of a fucking throne, how insufferable can these crime lords get?!
"We meet again," a familiar, deep raspy voice calls out from the throne.
And all around the hall room, the sound of thunder flashes and Jimin jumps a bit, gripping Seokjin's hand tighter.
"I can't fucking believe you, Min Yoongi."
Seokjin's ex, and once a friend, now a criminal mastermind, with brightly coloured hair and clashing all black clothes was sitting on an exact replica of the throne of swords from Game Of Thrones, and was grinning lazily like a cat who caught its mice.
"What the hell is going on here?" Jimin wonders out loud.
"We had a deal, you don't put yourself in danger and I stay out of this." Yoongi frowns.
"Your men literally dragged me and my partner here." Seokjin deadpans. Yoongi's frown deepens when he notices their clasped hands. "Your... Partner?" He voice turns dangerously sharp.
Now Jimin might be way out of his depth here, but he knows enough to piece together that Seokjin hyung has very questionable in men and that he does not want the incredibly intimidating tiny, mint haired man who's sitting on a throne of literal swords to staring daggers into him.
"We're not together, Seokjin hyung is the lieutenant in charge of teaching me the ropes, for parking tickets and other such offenses. My job is not to bust out crime lords, and I take my job very seriously, which is parking tickets." Jimin clarifies. Yoongi just tilts his head and stares at him like he's just spoken Latin, and Jimin can barely manage passable English.
However, another voice behind them laughs loudly, and thunder rumbles again seriously, where is that coming from they're inside a fucking factory, and there's a tall man with obviously dyed red hair, wearing a leather jacket looking like he stepped out a Vogue photoshoot where his concept was Ronald McDonald.
"I like him, he's funny. Hi hyung, missed you loads." The boy, never once removing his eyes from Jimin's goes and hugs Seokjin, who holds back tightly. "Hi TaeTae," he whispers back softly, and Jimin is slightly concerned at how someone in the police force is so closely attached to known criminals, but decides not to question it. Stand still and look pretty, Park Jimin. And do not think of the attractive, deep voice, long limbed redhead, don't.
Yoongi clicks his fingers once, and suddenly a bunch of those large, strong men arrive carrying an entire table laden with food, and wow where did he even get those guys from? Does he clone them? Surely, Korean men can't be that large naturally. Maybe this factory was refurbished to make a clone factory? That's definitely an evil mastermind thing to do.
Taehyung pulls up a chair and picks up an apple and bites into it. Jimin tries to not ogle at the way some of the juice drips down from the side of Taehyung's mouth, or how effortlessly careless he is, and fuck Jimin totally sympathizes with Seokjin hyung's unfortunate choices in men.
Speaking of which, Seokjin and Yoongi seem to be having some sort of a one-off, but there doesn't seem to be any actual fire to their words, which comforts Jimin because they are dealing with an actual arsonist here.
"You just want me to eat something, like Persephone ate the pomegranates and was stuck in the Underworld? Yeah, no thanks."
"Hades tricked her to be there, without her consent."
"Yeah, like somebody got his big guards to get us here without consent."
"You had your phone with you, and you weren't even searched, cuffed or blindfolded! Plus, don't compare me to Hades, I'm better than that."
"Yoongi, you are sitting on a throne of swords."
"It's from Game Of Thrones!"
"Does this happen a lot?" Jimin asks Taehyung in wonder. He shrugs in reply. "Every few months or so, it's like a bad couple reunion." Jimin nods, and bites into a crepe, all his previous fears forgotten because while Seokjin hyung is scowling, his body language and posture is completely relaxed and Yoongi might be making a facial expression that is akin to a genuine smile. It's kind of creepy and extremely cute.
From far away, the revving of a very loud motorcycle could be heard, and the doors crash open with a bang, the accompanying sound of thunder following a split second later and Jimin's not even surprised anymore. This is a regular Sunday brunch thing, of course, it is. Having your evil ballroom broken into by strangers riding Harley Davidson bikes, who hasn't that happened ever to?
"And now, things will get interesting, here comes Adonis." Taehyung speaks out, as the biker takes off his helmet, and shrugs his hair which is sticking up in all directions. He looks quite young, and like he just had 10 RedBulls at once. Adonis, Persephone's Lover and Hades' Rival. And the Star Wars theme is playing in the background, but Jimin has learnt not to question things.
"Hyung, I came as fast as I got news from my sources, are you being held captive?" Biker boy asks Seokjin who had a croissant in his hand and was about to either eat it or throw it at Yoongi's face.
"Sources meaning I texted him." Taehyung drawls, and the boy scowls.
Yoongi looked mildly irritated. "How did you even get in, you bastard?"
The boy grins, and loud yelling can be heard from beyond the corridor. "I didn't, Hobi hyung got me in."
Seokjin lets out an exasperated sigh. "Namjoon, darling come on down and get Hoseok out, please. Since the gang's all here, let's all have a civil lunch."
Jimin has no idea what's going on, but these crepes are really good.
A guy who looks like he's cosplaying as both Han Solo and Chewbacca gets dragged along by the burly clones and the first thing out of his bruised mouth are: "Yoongi hyung, have you considered getting skinnier guards, like geez. Also dibs on the kimbap." He is introduced as Jung Hoseok, and Jimin likes him already.
When Hoseok enters, instead of the usual sound of thunder, the humming of birds like something out of a Disney princess movie plays, and a tall, lanky guy with pink hair carrying a laptop walks out. That's the Namjoon that Seokjin hyung was talking about and apparently he's a genius. "I graduated top of class at MIT so now I play special effects music when someone walks in and sometimes I hack into government files. Part times whistleblower, full time rapper." And somehow, even though he works for Yoongi and Hoseok is with the biker boy, Jeongguk who Yoongi can't stand, Namjoon and Hoseok appear to be best friends, completely at ease in each other's presence.
It was kind of funny, seeing Yoongi and Jeongguk have a silent battle about who gets to sit next to Seokjin hyung before both of them choose opposite sides beside him. Seokjin kind of ignores them both in favour of lunch and Taehyung explains in Jimin's ear, the entire history between them and completely reveling in the fact of how his low baritone made Jimin's ears go red and how he was squirming.
Apparently, at one point in university, Yoongi and Seokjin dated but they broke it off because Yoongi's tiny habit of sometimes setting things on fire got in the way. And then somewhere along the timeline, Jeongguk came into the picture, who was always up for fun and had a ready supply of XTC pills. Until Yoongi found Seokjin throwing up in a bush at 4am and needed to be hospitalized, and even though Seokjin reinstated time and again that the overdose was completely his fault, Yoongi started hating Jeongguk because he's the reason Seokjin got access to drugs in the first place. Similarly, Jeongguk hates Yoongi because Seokjin was thinking about him and they had messed up the one thing that was right in his life.
In their senior year, Yoongi's friend Fei was being harassed by her ex boyfriend, who had claimed to leak her nudes if she didn't get back with him, and Fei was the daughter of an important businesswoman, this would absolutely ruin her and mother's careers and Yoongi just felt so...angry but knowing he didn't have the physical strength to beat up this guy, because of his stature, also that would mean giving up his university career which he didn't care all that much for, he found the guy's laptop and his phone and set it on fire in front of his dorm. Fire left no evidence, the investigation had no leads because Fei had an alibi and Yoongi, for the first time, felt control.
It's not right, taking the law into your own hands, he knows. But sometimes, it's the law that's corrupt. Over the years, 'Suga' started getting multiple requests, to help people out and after careful research, done behalf of Namjoon, who realized hacking was better than app developing in terms of saving actual people. The biggest maneuver they had pulled off was the string of factories that didn't follow labour laws and often hired kids under 16, and the worst part is, it was government owned, so they had to orchestrate a false cause for the fire which occurred when there were no workers or witnesses, but the message that "We aren't taking your shit" blazed clearly through every single media platform at 4 AM in Korea.
Jeongguk, on the other hand, not quite blazing bold. Jeongguk knew everyone, and everyone knew someone shady. Jeongguk helped rat them out, but before he could do that he'd have to fit in with them first. So what he also did, hustling on the side, wasn't exactly legal; but for the greater good it was beneficial. It was his dedication that had caught Seokjin's eye, and had never let go. They still cross paths, from time to time, they all do.
One thing they have in common is that they don't trust the government enough to join forces, which is why Suga is a crime lord and Jeongguk isn't a special agent. Namjoon's day job is updating Candy Crush, and Hoseok critiques ballet.
"And what are you, Kim Taehyung?" Jimin asks, aware that he is half sitting on Taehyung's lap, all notions of personal space forgotten. Seokjin keeps sending wry looks their way, but he honestly has no room to talk when two beautiful men are absolutely enamored with him.
"I'm whoever you want me to be, at your service." Taehyung's breath tickles on Jimin's neck.
"Okay, so let me get this straight. Yoongi's an arsonist, Namjoon's like a genius, Jeongguk's a double agent dealer, Hoseok is the middle man because who's gonna trust a 22 year old with potential information, and you, well, I don't trust you so that goes without saying."
"Smart boy." Taehyung winks.
"Then what does that leave Jin hyung? An unfortunate series of events that he's caught in? Because he's part of the law."
Taehyung laughs out loud at that and Jimin feels a bit off put because he was on a Sherlockian roll there. "Pretty baby, don't you see? He's the one that makes sure all the wrong people don't arrive at the crime scene at the right time. By giving them parking tickets. He'll show up in all the bad parts of the city for one forced mishap. Just a fifteen minute argument over a false ticket is a huge window for an escape. Why do you think his knights in shining armor are so obsessed in saving him? And if you know Jin hyung, you know he's a bit of an exhibitionist."
Jimin thinks back to the morning when Seokjin hyung was blatantly putting on a display just because he knew he looked good, and okay he definitely shouldn't be on Taehyung's lap right now.
Behind them, the impromptu lunch party was going well, all things considered. Namjoon and Hoseok were checking out Jeongguk's bike, and Namjoon looked like he kind of wanted to take apart the engine and put it back together like Legos. Hoseok put the helmet on Namjoon, because 'you can't ever be too careful with these crazy geniuses, and I'm actually fond of this one.'. Jeongguk was busy holding nearly all of Seokjin's attention, retelling wild tales of the drug laundering he has dashingly put a stop to, but Jimin notices that despite the full attention that Jeongguk is enjoying, Seokjin's hand is clasped with someone else's. It felt so natural that Jimin, if he hadn't gone through the earlier events of today, would've had a hard time believing that these men here weren't best of friends at a regular house-party.
At one point when Jimin manages to unstick himself from Taehyung, and Namjoon was apologizing to him for scaring him with the thunder noise, Seokjin hyung came over and pulled him aside.
"I know you heard a lot of things today which might change your opinion on the kind of work we do, or you can continue and I can promise you'll never have to run into me or any of these people should you never need to testify and--"
Jimin cuts Seokjin off in his serious rant, because it doesn't suit him, that solemn glum look. Where's his hyung who tried to talk out two men triple the size of them to cover their dragon tattoo with a Disney princess's?
"Hyung, if you guys want to...accept me into this little coup d'état of yours, then I would be more than honoured."
Seokjin's eyes immediately light up and Jimin is engulfed into a hug. "Oh Jiminie, I always wanted a rookie partner! Your ass will look amazing in those pants!"
And it's a little jarring, realizing that an actual arsonist's and someone who has probably frequented every drug den in the city's heart and sanity revolves around one man, and that man is making sure that an actual whistleblower, someone who gathers information through probably illegal methods, and someone whose probably committed actual violence because Taehyung's not that slick at hiding the gang tattoo behind his ear, don't get caught, by simply writing down parking tickets.
The most dangerous man, in possibly all of South Korea, is Kim Seokjin.
Jimin can't wait to go to work tomorrow.