It’s two in the morning when Yoongi’s phone buzzes with the first notification. Then the second and, finally, the third. Yoongi sighs. Who the hell is sending him texts at this time of night? Probably Namjoon downing too many Sojus and wanting to unload his latest philosophical musing.
In all honesty, Yoongi's outrage at being disturbed has little justification; he’s already fully awake anyway, working on his latest composition. Still, it’s the principle of the matter.
He grabs his phone, surprised to find that the notifications aren’t from text messages but rather from the dating app that he hasn’t looked at for months. He’d almost forgotten it was still installed. He gets the odd message now and then. They tend to come from one of three categories: total crazies; guys who want to see what it’s like with an Asian dude (Yoongi’s skin crawls at the memories of those messages); or late night messages that clearly go out to any and every person on the site, asking if he’s down to fuck yet never referencing his name.
Given that it’s just gone 2am, Yoongi’s willing to bet it’s the latter, some horny fucker looking for an easy hook up. Yoongi opens the notifications just so that he can delete them, but he pauses when he realises that they are different sort of notifications. His brow furrows a little.
02:17 Tae liked your photo
02:17 Tae liked your photo
02:17 Tae liked your photo
Shit, Yoongi clearly guessed wrong; this guy must be firmly in the crazy camp. Yoongi knows this for a fact because there’s not much about his profile for anyone to ‘like’, particularly his photos. He supposes there’s one decent photo of him that he uploaded to the site, but the others- not so much. The second photo is of him looking royally pissed off and giving the finger to the camera. The last one doesn’t even have him in it, but is simply a photo of a bus shelter, desolate on an abandoned beach front. He thinks it looks good, quite arty if he does say so himself, even if Namjoon – of all people – declared it pretentious.
Hoseok kept encouraging him to expand his photo selection because hyung, it’s like you’re not even trying. Yoongi didn’t want to break it to Hoseok that, yes, that’s exactly what he was doing. He’s had his heart battered enough times and the thought of actively putting himself out there to get the same treatment again just seems masochistic. He’s only on the site to fulfil some kind of mental checkbox, to assure himself that he is actually doing something about his love life – or total lack thereof.
Yoongi’s about to click on this guy’s profile, just out of curiosity, but he’s stopped when a message immediately comes through. The frown on Yoongi’s face deepens; yep, definitely a crazy. He opens it with increasing wariness. Thankfully, it seems fairly mundane.
Yoongi blinks down at the phone screen. An exclamation mark and a smiley face? Even if he didn’t already know that this guy was certifiable, then this would certainly be enough to put him off. Hoseok may call it picky; Yoongi calls it knowing what he wants. There’s probably the perfect guy out there, waiting for Yoongi to meet one day. Probably.
He clicks through to the guy’s profile and he’s instantly taken aback. Firstly by the gorgeous man in the profile photo, secondly by the reams of information cluttering the page. There’s plenty of questions you can fill in on the site, an attempt to help you realise your compatibility with the other person. There’s the generic age, location, looking for boxes, but also space to write about your interests, favourite TV shows, music tastes… far too much detail, in Yoongi’s opinion. Yoongi has purposefully left every single box blank on his profile apart from the first three. Tae’s by contrast is an explosion of facts.
Yoongi ignores all of that for now, clicking instead on Tae’s photos. It can’t hurt to have a look. He’s uploaded the maximum number of six pictures and Yoongi takes some time studying each one. The first one- his profile photo – is a simple headshot, just the guy smiling happily at the camera. He’s strikingly handsome and Yoongi spends possibly a little too long staring at it. Then there’s a photo of him messing about with friends, about to consume a huge slice of pizza. A cute picture of him hugging a dog, followed by one of him on the beach, unfortunately covered up in a loose t shirt and shorts. Not that Yoongi’s some kind of pervert but- well. It seems like he a nice body. Another fun photo with friends, dressed up for Halloween, and finally one of him in more formal attire.
Yoongi looks a little too long as this one as well. This guy is flawless, stunning in a way that Yoongi’s only really ever seen in magazines, and something just feels- off. There’s no way that this guy is contacting Yoongi to pursue anything; not with his stark profile, devoid of information and three quite disappointing photos. Yoongi doesn’t get much time to contemplate it before another message comes through.
How was your day?
Yoongi purses his lips, nicely matching with his furrowed brow. The attractiveness of this man along with his apparent eagerness sets off alarm bells in Yoongi’s mind. This has got to be one of two things; either he’s being catfished and those are definitely not Tae’s photos (if that’s even his real name), or one of his friends has found his profile and is playing a prank by pretending to be a handsome stranger. He plumps for the second option, knowing exactly the sort of person who would find this hilarious.
Jeongguk, is this you?
Yoongi sighs. Of course Jeongguk wouldn’t own up to it straight away. He needs to draw it out of him. He just needs the right bait. Yoongi grins; he’s got it.
Just some annoying dude with a tiny dick
Yoongi enjoys the pause that follows. There’s no way that Jeongguk would let that slide without some sort of retort. Yoongi’s a little surprised when one doesn't come.
Yoongi snorts with laughter at Tae's unintentionally humorous comment. He loves the kid dearly as a friend but the idea of dating Jeongguk is absurd. He decides that this probably isn't Jeongguk. He thinks of other friends it could be but he can't imagine any of them putting this much effort into creating such a full profile. Only Jeongguk would invest that amount time into pranking Yoongi.
Yoongi decides it must be option one then. This handsome guy, whoever he may be, has had his photos stolen to be used by the person now chatting to Yoongi.
Just a friend
Is this a catfish then?
This is a catfish
<Tae has sent you a photo>
Yoongi clicks to open the attachment. A large picture of an actual catfish fills his screen. Yoongi looks at the fish and bites back a grin. He quickly types out a reply.
Are you catfishing me?
There's a pause before Tae replies. Yoongi knows it's a pointless question - as though anyone would own up to that straight away. But it's worth a shot; showing that he's suspicious already might just scare this guy off. Or girl. Who knows who's behind the photos. Eventually a response comes through.
Yes I am
<Tae has sent you a photo>
Yoongi's heart plummets unexpectedly hard. He knew this would be the case of course, but having it revealed so fast, so bluntly- well, it's pretty damn depressing. He tentatively clicks to open the photo. He supposes it must be an image of what this person actually looks like.
Yoongi opens the photo and immediately lets out a sharp burst of laughter. It's the same photo of the catfish but with Tae's head crudely cropped out of another photo and pasted on top. He's even drawn on little lines for the whiskers.
You have some amazing MS Paint skills
And yet somehow I'm still single
Such a cruel world
Yoongi's laughter-creased face softens into a small smile. Is this guy really the one from the photos? It seems too unlikely. The universe isn't that kind.
So you're telling me that you just saw my profile and decided to message me
I was informed that's how dating sites work
There's nothing remotely interesting on my profile
There's NOTHING on my profile
It says you're 26 and looking for a relationship
That's all it takes?
Your standards are pretty low
If you're not interested just say so
No need to be rude
Sorry I wasn't trying to offend you
Why did you message me of all people?
You seemed cool and mysterious
But now you just wanna talk about fish all the time so...
Not about fish
Catfishing is different
A fish is a fish
Yoongi's really not sure if the guy is deliberately winding him up or if he genuinely has never heard of the phrase. He types out a reply, lips tugging up into the unexpected curve of a smile.
A catfish is someone who pretends to be someone they're not using Facebook or other social media to create false identities, particularly to pursue deceptive online romances
To quote Urban Dictionary
I honestly didn't know that was a thing
Sorry for sending you a photo of my face on a fish
Made me laugh
I also messaged because your photos were good
Your face is 9/10
I’m trying to play it cool
9/10 is playing it cool?
You’re obviously a 10
Yoongi blinks down at the screen, his lips tugging further up to deepen his smile. He still can’t quite believe that this guy can be for real, but he relishes the compliment anyway. He may not actively seek out praise, but it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t make him preen a little at Tae’s comment. He’s not used to receiving it so outright; he was expecting some push back or a sarcastic remark instead.
I think by telling me that you’re no longer playing it cool
Seems I don’t have to play it cool anymore
Do you want to meet for a coffee sometime?
Yoongi suddenly goes cold, the smile fading from his lips. The idea of actually meeting up with anyone off this site is something he didn’t think he’d ever have to deal with. He thought he’d made his profile barren enough that no one would be interested in pursuing anything with him. Just being on the site was enough of an effort for him, and it got Hoseok off his back.
Uh, isn’t that a bit quick?
What’s the point in spending ages chatting when we can just meet and see what happens
I think it’s always easier to get to know someone in person
Yoongi chews on his lower lip, reading Tae’s answer. He does admit, he likes the idea of not dragging things out, and he also likes Tae’s apparent straightforwardness. It still seems kind of sudden to him still but- Yoongi’s also curious. Something about this character intrigues him and he’d be keen to meet up just to see if this guy is really who he says he is.
Do you know Kaffeine
On Duke St?
Yes I do
Are you free this weekend?
I’m free Saturday afternoon
Busy in the evening though
Yoongi knows full well that his Saturday evening will consist of sitting around in sweatpants and eating take out, possibly with Jeongguk inviting himself over to get a free meal, but Tae doesn’t need to know that. Always good to have a get out plan for if the date goes terribly.
How about meeting at 2?
See you then I guess?
See you then
Yoongi tries to ignore the multiple smiley faces, along with the surge of butterflies that have appeared out of nowhere and settled in his stomach. He has a kind of date on Saturday. With an insanely handsome guy who also seems genuinely nice, if a little eager.
Yoongi is hit by the horrid sensation that he might just be getting his hopes up. This will never end well.