Park Jimin is a dead man. Jungkook is going to make sure of that himself.
He’s not sure how he’s going to achieve this, but from the looks of it he’s going to have plenty of time to figure out numerous ways judging by how long the guy in front of him has been talking about his business stocks or something equally boring. To start with Jungkook had been nodding and seeming interested, but by the time he’s knocked back his third gin and tonic and ordered his fourth (“make it a double”) he’s pretty sure he could die and this guy wouldn’t even notice.
“...so I told him “James, if you invest in that business you’re going to lose millions.”. What does he go and do? He invests! Can you believe that, Jungkeck?”
“It’s Jungkook.” Jungkook mutters.
“Sorry, what was that?” The guy looks up. “I didn’t hear what you said.”
“It doesn’t matter.”
It really doesn’t. It’s not like Jungkook remembers this guys name. He briefly remembers being told it somewhere between the guy making a show of his flashy watch while shaking Jungkook’s hand and him ordering for Jungkook as well.
Jungkook knows that this date is going precisely nowhere. By the time he leaves this date he’s going to be breathing a sigh of relief and making a mental not to never trust Jimin when he tries to set Jungkook up. “You’ll like him, Kook. He’s older and really smart. Sure, he talks a lot, but he’s a friend of Yoongi’s so...”
Jungkook has always liked Yoongi, Jimin’s older boyfriend. Until now. Now, Jungkook is seriously doubting Yoongi’s life choices.
“I guess I should ask you about yourself.” Jungkook’s date sighs. The reluctance is evident in his voice and Jungkook wonders if he’s having just as little fun on this date as he is. “So Yoongi told me you work in retail?”
“Yeah… I’m a shop assistant at a shoe store.” Jungkook replies.
“Oh, that’s… nice.” His date grimaces.
“Well I enjoy it.” Jungkook tries to keep the sharpness out of his tone, but he can see the way this guy is looking down on him and it’s not a feeling he likes.
It’s at this point that he notices the guy sat at a table in front of them is watching them. He’s got his phone out and a small smile on his face as he looks between his phone and Jungkook’s date.
“That’s all that matters then.” His date replies. “Anyway, I guess it’s just a stepping stone for you?”
“What do you mean?”
“Surely you don’t want to be just a shop assistant. Don’t you want to go to get a real job at some point?”
Jungkook raises his eyebrow. “I work fourty hours a week, on my feet for eight hours a day with a twenty minute break. That sounds like a real job to me-”
“Hold up, Jangkick! I was just saying-”
“It’s Jungkook,” He hisses.
“Why are you getting so defensive?”
“I literally cancelled plans to come on this blind date, but all you’ve done is talk about yourself and talk down to me. Why do you think I’m getting defensive?”
Out of the corner of the eye, he sees the stranger at the other table giggle to himself and type ferociously on his phone.
The guy frowns. “I don’t appreciate your tone-”
“Look, this clearly isn’t going anywhere. I think I’m just going to leave.” Jungkook pushes his chair back with a squeak and stands up. “Thank you for-”
He feels a hand grasp his wrist, tight.
“You don’t get to tell me that this isn’t going anywhere.” The man growls.
By now, the half-full restaurant is staring at their table, and Jungkook feels a flush of embarrassment, not just for himself but for this dick in front of him.
“Let me go.”
“Yoongi said you were fun.” There’s a tone to the way he says fun that makes Jungkook shiver.
“Let me go.”
“I don’t think I will-”
“He said let go.” A new voice says. It’s deeper, and very sure. Jungkook twists his head a little to see the man from the next table, the one who had been watching this whole exchange. He’s stood now, and is slowly approaching their table.
“You don’t need to get involved.” The date says. “Fuck off.”
“Let go of him, and I will.” The voice is still calm.
“I said fuck off before I do something I regret.”
Honestly, Jungkook could get out of this situation himself. He isn’t a damsel-in-distress, he can kick this guys ass to China and back. He may be a little intimidated, but up until now he’s been polite. He’s about to tell the newcomer that he doesn’t need his help, but before he can even open his mouth he witnesses something he’s pretty sure he’s never going to forget. He sees the newcomer with the deep voice pick up his date’s drink and pour half a glass of red wine over his head.
There’s a splash, then a squeak, then a short silence.
Then Jungkook feels the pressure on his wrist release as the guy grabs at his shirt. He turns to the stranger with a look of pure rage on his face. Jungkook has never seen anyone with a face that red.
“This is Gucci!” The man shouts. “How dare you-”
“Honey, I know Gucci, that is most definitely not Gucci.” The stranger replies, his voice airier than before.
Jungkook’s date looks down and grabs at it. “That fucking salesman-”
“Hey.” The stranger says, looking straight at Jungkook. “Do you want to get out of here?” He holds out a hand.
Jungkook doesn’t think twice before taking it with a smile. “Fuck yeah.” He breathes.
The air outside is warm. It’s the soupy kind of warm that comes with midsummer, and Jungkook is happy about that because he left his jacket inside in his rush to get out.
They run out of the restaurant, Jungkook’s hand still in this strangers. He lets the boy pull him down the road to a small park, it’s abandoned aside from a few teenagers playing soccer on the grass pitch. The stranger pulls his hand out of Jungkook’s and climbs up the metal climbing frame.
“You coming?” He asks, as he swings a leg over the metal bar at the top and sits down.
Jungkook could go home now. He could go home and call Jimin and tell him that he’s lost blind date rights for the rest of their lives together as platonic soulmates. He could go home and install Tinder again and try and get a date that way. He could watch soppy movies and pretend this night never happened.
He doesn’t do any of that though, instead he hooks a foot onto the metal bar and pulls himself up the small frame so he’s sat next to the stranger.
For a while, they sit there, watching the ball being kicked by the kids. Jungkook lets himself get a look at the boy beside him, he looks younger now than he did in the restaurant, maybe just a little older than Jungkook. He’s got fluffy brown hair that’s blowing in the light breeze, and even from his side profile, Jungkook can see that he’s extremely attractive. He can’t believe he didn’t notice that earlier, but he was otherwise occupied.
“I guess I’m not getting that job then...” The stranger says after a moment.
Jungkook frowns. “What job?”
“Oh, I was at the restaurant for a job interview. I got there super early so I was just hanging out. Then I heard that guy and saw you and you looked so bored so I had to share it on Twitter. Then he started saying that shit and grabbing you and I couldn’t let him.” He shrugs. “So I guess I’m missing my interview.”
“You didn’t need to.” Jungkook replies. “I could have dealt with him myself. I was just being polite before I kicked his ass.”
The guy shrugs. “What can I say? I can’t resist helping a cute boy out.”
“Well… thanks anyway.” Jungkook replies. He smiles. “I guess I should probably learn my hero’s name?”
Now it’s the other guy’s turn to blush. “It’s Taehyung.” He says.
“Taehyung.” Jungkook tries the name out and finds that he likes the way it feels in his mouth. “I’m Jungkook.”
“I know that, you practically shouted it at the whole restaurant.” Jungkook blushes, he seems to be doing a lot of that at the moment. “Still, it’s nice to meet you.” Taehyung replies. “I’d shake your hand but...”
Jungkook knows what Taehyung means, they’re holding onto the metal pole below them for dear life - and as nice as it is to watch the sun setting from this vantage point (and it doesn’t hurt that the sunset is beautiful, but the man sat next to Jungkook is so much more than that) – his butt is starting to go numb and there’s a chill starting to ride the breeze and Jungkook knows he needs to move soon.
He should go home.
But this big part of him is so not ready to let this evening ends, because there’s something in the air that makes him want to be close to Taehyung.
“Hey.” He says quietly. Taehyung turns, a question on his face. “Want to get out of here?”
“Don’t use my own words on me.” Taehyung chuckles, but there’s a bit smile on his face and Jungkook knows that’s a yes.
Jungkook had no idea where to go when he’s asked Taehyung, all he’d known was that he needed to move and he didn’t care where they went as long as it was with Taehyung,
They end up in an ice cream parlour a few minutes away, it’s empty and the server seems super happy to see them walk through the door.
“Hello guys what can I get you can I recommend the root beer float or if you don’t like root beer we have rum and raisin or maybe even the mint chocolate ice cream it’s really nice in a chocolate waffle cone.” He says, and Jungkook thinks that if this guy was a sentence he would definitely need some commas somewhere.
Jungkook turns to Taehyung, who turns to him at the same time. They share a look of pure bewilderment before turning back to the shop worker.
“Just a plain vanilla for me.” Jungkook replies.
“I’ll have the chocolate and pistachio and ooh can I have some of the caramel with sprinkles and strawberry sauce as well for me please.” Taehyung replies.
For someone who had seemed so tough in the restaurant, and so put together in the park, Taehyung in the ice cream parlour is someone brand new. His eyes are wide with wonder as he takes in all the flavours and toppings, a boxy smile on his face as he’s presented his giant cone of milky goodness.
The shop worker - Hoseok, his name tag reads – rings the two ice creams up together. Jungkook doesn’t even think before pulling out his wallet and paying for both desserts himself.
“You didn’t have to do that.” Taehyung says as they sit at one of the tables. “I would have paid for mine-”
“It’s okay.” Jungkook replies. “I don’t mind.”
“But mine was like twice the price of yours. I feel bad.”
“You don’t mean to, I want to treat you.” Jungkook smiles. “Pay you back for the restaurant, I guess.”
“Why don’t you just pay next time?” Hoseok interrupts, looking between them.
“Next time?” Jungkook and Taehyung speak in unison, looking at each other
“Oh, is this your first date?” Hoseok asks.
Taehyung barely misses a beat before he replies. “Yeah… I guess it is.”
Jungkook feels the colour flush over his face at Taehyung’s response.
“I hope things go well. You’re cute.” Hoseok smiles.
“I do too.” Jungkook replies, he’s not sure whether Taehyung hears him, his words are so quiet. Judging by the matching colour on Taehyung’s cheeks and the way his mouth opens into a little ‘o’ of surprise, Jungkook thinks he does.
Taehyung looks up at him, and Jungkook looks away.
“Fine.” Taehyung says after a moment. “You can pay next time.”
Jungkook is just finishing his ice cream when his phone rings.
He pulls it out of his pocket and reads the screen. It’s Jimin.
He sighs before answering the call.
“You are in big trouble.” He says.
“Hello to you as well.” Jimin deadpans. “So what happened?”
“The guy was a dick.” Jungkook replies. “He kept talking about stock markets. He actually told me that he’d be my financial advisor and claimed he could make me a millionaire in a month.”
“I don’t see any problem with that.” Jimin replies.
“He also kept calling me Jengpook and all other names. He never let me talk. He told me that I needed to get a better job and then wouldn’t let me leave when I wanted to.” Jungkook adds.
He hears a deep sigh on the other side of the line and then; “I’m going to kill Yoongi.”
“Don’t, it’s not his fault.” Jungkook states. “Anyway, I’m fine.”
“Are you at home? Want me to come round for a ‘we hate boys’ party?”
Jungkook looks at Taehyung, who’s intensely reading the menu. (Jungkook is also pretty sure he’s listening to the conversation as well).
“No.” He says, maybe a little too quickly. “I actually… erm, I’m still out.”
“What? Do I need to come get you? Are you drowning your singleness in alcohol again? I told you the last time-”
“Jimin, stop!” He flushes when he sees Taehyung laughing quietly. “I’m… not alone.”
“Are you hooking up, Jeon Jungkook? Don’t make me tell your mother. Or Yoongi-”
“Jimin, I’m not. Ugh, shut up.” Jungkook sighs and lowers his voice. “I met someone… I’m kind of… on a date. I think.”
He seriously hopes that Taehyung can’t hear him because this is humiliating, but Taehyung’s face splits into another bright, boxy smile and Jungkook knows that he wasn’t quiet enough.
“A date. How did you get a date from a failed date?”
“Don’t even ask.” Jungkook sighs. “I’ll tell you all about it later.”
Jimin snorts. “If you’re not too best making sweet, sweet love-”
He ends the call, face probably a postbox shade of red by now.
Taehyung is watching him with a smile.
“He was, but he’s the one who set me up on that date so that’s up in the air at the moment.” Jungkook says drily.
“Why? It wasn’t that bad.” Jungkook cocks an eyebrow and Taehyung laughs lightly. “Okay, the date was awful… but this one is going pretty well, I’d say.”
For all of the confidence of his words, Taehyung definitely looks a little bit shy, and there’s an obvious sigh of relief when Jungkook replies;
“I think we might need another, just to confirm that...”
They don’t end things there.
They could. They’re definitely at a point where Jungkook thinks they’re going somewhere. Even though he’s known Taehyung a grand total of three and a half hours, he just knows that they’ve got some kind of spark that both of them can feel.
If Jungkook was to say he was leaving, he knows they would exchange details and have an awkward goodbye and he’d barely wait until he was through the door before sending the cursory ‘I had a good time tonight’ text, before staying up all night flirting over text and agreeing to meet again. He can see it all happening already.
Yet somehow he’s still not ready to say goodbye.
As they leave the ice cream parlour, bidding goodbye to Hoseok with a wave, they notice that all of the restaurants are starting to pull down their shutters.
“I know a place.” Taehyung says with a smile, holding out his hand again.
Just like a few hours ago, Jungkook takes it with no hesitation, but this time he lets himself feel the warmth of Taehyung’s hands, he lets himself feel that connection.
They walk quietly together down the road for a few minutes before stopping in front of a building.
“Ta-dah!” Taehyung says, pointing at the sign.
Jungkook’s face immediately breaks into a smile. “Karaoke?”
“...Is that okay?”
Jungkook laughs. “Fuck yeah.”
Taehyung, it turns out, also loves Big Bang. They order in drinks and then queue every Big Bang song on the list and they spend an hour doing their best impressions of G-Dragon, rocking out to Fantastic Baby and Crooked and Taehyung doing an exaggerated performance of Eyes, Nose, Lips. It’s something that usually Jungkook wouldn’t see himself doing unless acceptably intoxicated, but here he is – slightly tipsy and getting way too into this.
It’s Taehyung, he realises.
He’s already figured out that Taehyung makes him happy. He feels warm and happy around the man. What he’s just learning is that Taehyung also brings out this side of him, the less quiet more boisterous side that only his closest friends see after a while. Taehyung is seeing that after a few hours.
That means a lot.
By the time their hour is over, Jungkook’s throat is was and he has a warm buzz going through him from the music and it’s late. It’s almost one, and he’s opening the store in the morning so he needs to be up at five-thirty.
They walk outside slowly, Jungkook is pretty sure Taehyung is trying to delay this goodbye as much as he is.
“I need to go.” He says with a sigh. “I have to be up for work soon…”
“I have college.” Taehyung replies.
Jungkook realises there and then that he doesn’t know much about Taehyung, he doesn’t know what he studies or much other than the fact that he likes his ice cream sweet and his karaoke loud. Still, Jungkook knows it won’t stay that way. Taehyung is holding his phone out, and Jungkook passes his and they both punch their numbers in without a word, and Jungkook knows that they will learn more about each other in time.
But this start is a good one, he knows. In fact, it’s more than a good start because Jungkook is warm inside and he’s had a lump in his throat all night because this feels so right.
“Can I kiss you?” Taehyung asks, pulling Jungkook out of his thoughts.
“Sorry, I don’t mean to be forward-”
“No. Fuck. No.” Jungkook breathes. “I just… you asked if you could kiss me and that’s so… nobody ever asks and I’d really like that-”
Jungkook is glad that Taehyung chooses that moment to kiss him because he’s rambling and probably going to make an idiot out of himself and Taehyung is going to decide that this whole thing is a mistake, just the rush of excitement that he’ll change his mind about. Jungkook seriously hopes he doesn’t because he has never been kissed like this before. He’s not a teenager, it’s not like he has never been kissed - but kissing Taehyung is so much sweeter, so much more special than anything he’s ever experienced before and he knew that would be the case but experiencing it is a whole other thing and…
Jungkook is falling.
Jungkook has been falling all night, really, but right now he thinks he’s crossed the line and he can’t go back now.
He pulls back reluctantly and he wants to find the words to tell Taehyung what he’s thinking but Taehyung is looking at him like he’s the epitome of perfect and Jungkook probably has the same look in his eyes and actually, he probably doesn’t need words. He finds them anyway.
“I really enjoyed tonight.” Jungkook says softly. “We should do it again some time.”
“We should do it again all the time.” Taehyung replies, his voice deep but his eyes deeper.
Jungkook laughs. “I was inferring that.”
“So… call me?”
Jungkook has never been good at this end of a date thing. Who’s going to call who? Will he seem too eager? Too cold?
With Taehyung it seems so much easier.
They part with another long kiss, and Jungkook wants more but he also wants to be fully functioning for work tomorrow because Seokjin is a great boss most of the time but he terrifies Jungkook when he’s angry.
He walks home slowly, the dopiest smile on his face, because he knows that even though this night started out as the worst date he’s ever had it ended with the best night of his life. He also knows that they have many more to come.
He’s going to be sleeping with his phone under his pillow tonight.