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Save The Last Dance For Me

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Before he's even fully awake and aware of his surroundings, the stench of urine burns a hole in Jimin's nose. He reluctantly opens his eyes. Namjoon lies on his side, his back to Jimin. Judging from the slow and steady rise and fall of his shoulder, he's still fast asleep. But it's only a matter of time before the urine stench permeates the full-face snoring mask he's taken to wearing to bed. Jimin rolls onto his other side, grimacing as the movement smears urine all over his legs. Medically, the mere ability to feel the sticky wetness on his skin is nothing short of a small miracle, but this supposed victory simply exacerbates his disgust and self-loathing.



Grunting lowly, he struggles his way into the electric wheelchair parked by the bed. The time it takes for him to get into it on his own gets a little bit shorter each day, but it's still a battle. Sitting in the residue of his own waste is mortifying, but that's easily the lesser evil compared with asking Namjoon to help him to the bathroom. Jimin manages to grab a fresh pair of underwear and steer himself to the bathroom just before the tears spill over. Another victory.



“F-fuck, I'm so...Shit, I hate this.”



He used to try to hold back the tears, or at the very least wipe them as they fell. By this point, Jimin simply hunches over his lap—his ever-present companion—and tries to keep drawing breaths as tears pour from his eyes and mucous drips from his nose. After all, what does it matter? In fact, he should just go for the trifecta and shit himself while he's at it.



“Stop,” he mutters through his sobs, unsure of who or what he's addressing.



“Jimin?”



Jimin sharply inhales and promptly chokes on his own saliva.



“Are you...are you almost done?” Namjoon's voice is slightly muffled by the door, but his concern rings loud and clear.



Jimin takes a few seconds to cough and clears his throat before he attempts to speak again. “Only just got in. I can come out so you can take your shower,” he offers, even as he mentally cries out for his preferred chamber of solitude.



“No, that's okay, I won't be late. I'll just eat first. Would you like me to make you anything?”



Jimin has to grit his teeth as a fresh wave of tears rolls down his face. Why is Namjoon so unfailingly understanding and supportive? Why can't he just kick the door and order Jimin out? Or at least sound put out about having woken up covered in someone else's piss?



“Jimin?”



“Tea,” Jimin chokes out.



“Okay. See you in a minute,” Namjoon says. He gives the wooden barrier a couple of light taps and then he's gone.



Jimin expects the sobs to return now that he doesn't have to hold them in. For a long moment, he just sits in his chair with his mouth slightly open, as if bracing himself for a big sneeze. It doesn't come.



Shaking his head at himself, Jimin dries his eyes on the sleeves of his nightshirt and places his hands on the edges of the tub. Deep inhale, slow exhale. On the crest of another deep breath in, Jimin pushes himself up. His legs, once strong and muscular, wobble and shake even as his arms support the lion's share of his body weight. Jimin all but hurls himself into the tub, swearing loudly as his useless limbs bounce off the chrome plated taps. Even without his panting, the acoustics in the bathroom make it all but impossible to hear anything that's not directly outside the door, so there's no way he can know for sure if Namjoon has stopped puttering around in the kitchen. Jimin can't hear it, but he can feel it.



The porcelain tub is cold, but Jimin shivers for a full minute before he finally shimmies out of his soiled clothes and floods the tub with warm water. He lets the water brush the tops of his shoulders before he shuts off the tap. Leaning back, he takes a deep breath and slowly slides down into the water. With each centimetre, the world gets further and further away. Jimin closes his eyes right as the water slips over the bridge of his nose. When his ears are covered and all he can hear is the whirring of his mind, Jimin is truly alone. Like this, Jimin finally has the freedom to wallow in the murky pool of thoughts that he keeps sequestered from Namjoon.



If my condition is better than expected, then what kind of life did you expect me to be living? Was saving my life even worth it if I can't enjoy it anymore? Why did you work so hard to resuscitate me? Why couldn't you just let me go peacefully? Why haven't I just—



Jimin pulls himself up, coughing as some water gets down his throat. The burning in his lungs burn helps him anchor himself as his head spins. Absently, he notes the water dripping onto the floor as he leans over the side of the tub. He ignores it in favour of the bigger messes that he needs to clean up.



After giving the seat of his chair a quick wipe, Jimin heaves himself in the driver's seat and exits the bathroom with the laundry bag hooked onto his chair. He stops. The bed has been stripped of all its linens and the smell of bleach hangs in the air. Swallowing hard, Jimin heads back inside the bathroom. Alone again, he revisits his treacherous thoughts.



Why are you still with me? Is it pity or some sense of obligation or fear of judgement from our families? Are you waiting for me to decide to leave on my own so you can let me go without guilt? Am I terrible for wanting to hold onto you?



He's no closer to any answers when he resurfaces.





~





Namjoon blinks hard when the first raindrop hits the centre of his forehead. Taking off his glasses, he looks askance at the grey, cloud-filled sky. Of course it's set to rain on the one day of the week that Jimin has an outdoor concert scheduled. Up on the stage, some of the background dancers wear similar looks of annoyance and disapproval on their faces as they glance up at the sky. Jimin pays the weather no mind though as he carries on with rehearsal. Namjoon generally admires Jimin's single-minded determination, but not when it results in him neglecting his own well-being. The rain is only coming down in a light drizzle right now, but Namjoon knows that even if it turns into a torrential downpour, Jimin will insist on performing so long as a single person is there to watch him. He's always been like that, but it's only gotten worse in the aftermath of the scandal.



As the last notes of the slower, more sombre track fades away, the music suddenly becomes poppy and upbeat. The whiplash shakes Namjoon out of his thoughts. The song is an old fan favourite and a staple in Jimin and Hoseok's sets, but it's not supposed to come in at this part of the set.



“Come on, don't look so upset. It's only a little water,” Hoseok calls out as he claps his hands. He rejoins Jimin in the centre of the stage and at once Jimin's expression lightens.



Namjoon finds himself grinning as he watches the two of them jump around. Up to now, Jimin has been fairly gentle in how he executes his moves; a sprained ankle five years ago forcibly broke him out of his habit of doing too much in rehearsals. But Hoseok has a way of bringing out the energy and drive in people, Jimin being especially sensitive to his magic. A quick glance around tells Namjoon that he's not the only one under the spell. The wind has picked up a bit, making the light rain that much more annoying as it's swept into their eyes, but the staff members are happily taking it in stride. One of the managers eagerly reaches out his hand as the infamous dance break approaches. Jimin skips over to him with a bright smile, only to wag his small finger in the older man's face. Laughter erupts among the small crowd of staff. Namjoon's own mirth is cut short when he looks up and spots Jimin looming over him, hand outstretched.



“No way.”



Jimin pouts. “Awww, come on, Joonie,” he whines. “It's only rehearsals. And most of the people here have already seen you dance at one of the company's year-end parties.”



“Oh, absolutely. Jimin still has that video of you attempting to do the leg move from 'Genie' on his phone,” Hoseok cackles.



“That's different,” Namjoon fumes even as he reels at Jimin's betrayal. “A man who drives an old Pinto might be fine taking it out on the road, but he doesn't necessarily want to park it next to a Maserati.”



Hoseok laughs even harder. Jimin rolls his eyes but can't stop his lips from curling into a smile.



“Don't think I've given up,” he warns. “One of these days, I'll get you to dance with me.”



Namjoon sticks out his tongue.



“Alright, let's break for lunch while we wait for the rain to die down,” one of the managers calls out from the stage. He waves his arms and directs everyone towards a tent at the edge of the courtyard.



Hoseok descends the stage using the steps at the side; Jimin gives Namjoon a heart attack.



“Fucking—!” Wind and words alike are knocked right out of Namjoon as Jimin comes crashing into his arms. “Jesus,” he wheezes as his heart hammers against his rib cage.



“Calm down. The stage is only, like, three feet above the ground,” Jimin giggles into Namjoon's ear.



It takes a while for Namjoon to find his footing and his balance since Jimin has his legs tightly wrapped around Namjoon's waist. Once he's sure he won't fall on his ass, Namjoon leans his head back to flash Jimin an unimpressed look. Jimin laughs, but it's tinged with rue. He yelps when Hoseok gives his ass a firm slap.



“Leave Namjoon be and come have your lunch,” he says as he passes the both of them.



Jimin reluctantly unwinds his legs and drops to stand on his own two feet. He keeps his arm linked with Namjoon's as he heads over to the food tent. Namjoon lets him do it, trying not to let his insecurity show. Even before those pictures of them ended up splashed across the entertainment section of various websites and newspapers, there was hardly a soul in the company who hadn't seen him and Jimin like this. But suspecting something and having it confirmed can change one's outlook. Intellectually, Namjoon knows that he got off relatively easily—knows that if Jimin is comfortable with being affectionate in public then he should be too. But it's still hard for him not to hyper-focus on the sneering background dancer or the make-up person who gives their joined hands a cold stare.



As if he can read his mind, Jimin gives his hand a squeeze. Discomfort still buzzes under his skin like an aggravated wasp, but Namjoon tamps it down until he's able to smile softly at Jimin. Jimin returns the smile and Namjoon falls a little more in love with him.



All at once, Namjoon remembers how important today is to Jimin. Hoseok has been an indispensable friend and the company has done more to support Jimin than either of them had expected, but Namjoon is the one that Jimin can't live without. He said as much when he was given the option to drop Namjoon to salvage his career. It's why he asked Namjoon to be here despite the risk of fanning the smouldering embers back into flames. Namjoon clenches his hands into fists.



“Hyung?” Jimin frowns when the pressure on his hands starts to get uncomfortable.



Namjoon takes a deep breath and pulls Jimin forward. Their noses bounce off each other and lips crash into teeth, but Namjoon holds Jimin in place as he recalibrates the kiss. With each press of Namjoon's lips and each roll of Namjoon's tongue, the tension in Jimin's body slowly drains away. When Jimin is all but swaying on his feet, Namjoon pulls away.



“Park Jimin, if do your best and get through this concert without incident, then I promise you that I will one day dance with you in front an audience.”



To seal the vow, Namjoon holds out his pinky finger. With a soft smile on his lips, Jimin links their pinkies and presses their thumbs together.



“I'll hold you to it,” he grins.





~





“Left, left right. Right, left, left. Come on, Namjoon, it's not that damned hard,” Hoseok sighs, a deep frown pulling his lips into a shape that Namjoon would laugh at if he weren't at the limits of his patience.



“Sorry, it's not so easy for the rest of us mere mortals,” he mutters through clenched teeth. “I told you I needed your help for a reason.”



Hoseok's scowl deepens for a second before he throws his head back. “Right, I'm sorry, it's just—”



“No, it's alright.” Namjoon shakes his head apologetically. “You're helping me in your own precious spare time—for free—and I'm not a natural like Jimin. I get it. I'd be frustrated with me too.”



“Take five?” Hoseok's lips quirk up in a little half-smile and that's the end of their little spat. They don't fight often, but when they do, their tempers flare up and burn away with a quickness. Maybe it's because they're the same age, why they're so comfortable with each other despite being second degree friends.



Namjoon nods. “Sounds good to me.”



Hoseok throws him a small towel. Namjoon raises his hand a second too late. He sputters when the towel slaps him in the face. He's greeted with the sight of Hoseok doubled over in laughter when he frees himself from the grip of the cotton threads.



“You and Jimin really are a case of opposites attract, eh? I still can't believe he ended up with someone so clumsy.”



“Whatever,” Namjoon snorts as he grabs a bottle of water from his bag. “Jimin is only graceful when he's on stage and I could beat you in an ice skating competition any day of the week.”



“I know I've been saying it for, like, a year now, but we really need to go to a rink sometime. I'm dying to know if you're bullshitting or not.” Hoseok shakes his head.



“I'm so not,” Namjoon mutters. Hoseok hums non-committally in response.



They lapse into comfortable silence, broken only by the absent yet rhythmic tapping of Hoseok's feet. It's pretty bare, but Namjoon catches himself trying to form lyrics to the beat Hoseok is unwittingly providing. He's not so good at freestyling anymore, but the beat is definitely something he could layer into one of his (many) works in progress. Namjoon mentally files it away as an offering for Yoongi to work his magic on.



“Ready to continue?” Hoseok asks, looking up from his phone.



Namjoon nods. “I won't get to where I need to be by sitting around.”



“Aren't you getting married next year?”



“No rest for the weary. My task is a tall order.”



Hoseok chuckles, pocketing his phone. “Alright, let's take it from the top.”



Namjoon takes a deep breath and tries to shut out the other man as the music starts up again. If all goes well then he'll be doing this in front of his friends and family members—not to mention Jimin himself. He needs to be able to focus only on the music and the movement of his body if he's going to pull off this performance. The real difficulty comes when Namjoon gets so immersed in his head space that he conjures up an apparition of Jimin, smartly dressed in a tuxedo with his hair slicked back. That's the part that Jimin doesn't seem to get about Nmajoon's hesitance. It's not really the reaction of other people that Namjoon is concerned about—like, it partially is, but it pales in comparison to the real problem, which is Jimin's own reaction.



Namjoon's relationship with Jimin is one of the most comfortable ones that he's ever had, but it began with him making an ass of himself. Since then, he's always kind of felt like he was on the back foot when it came to looking cool. It's half the reason he doesn't preview his songs to Jimin until they're already mostly finished anyway. The thought of humiliating himself on the biggest day of his life in front of the love of his life makes for more than adequate motivation to improve.



You make me begin/(Smile with me, smile with me, smile with me)/You make me begin



Namjoon turns towards his bag as Jungkook's personalised ringtone shatters the silence of the room. “Should I...?”



Hoseok waves a hand. “Go on, we haven't started again. Besides, Jungkook will just keep ringing until you answer,” he says with a roll of his eyes.



Namjoon picks up his phone, expecting Jungkook to regale him with some colourful account from the gaming convention he's supposed to be attending. Instead of excited babbling and boring anecdotes, soft sobbing and sniffles are the only sounds on the line.



“Jungkook, what happened? Are you okay?” Namjoon frowns in concern.



Jungkook sniffs. “I'm fine. It's—Hyung, I'm sorry, I—”



“Jungkook, if you're in trouble, I promise I won't be angry. I want to help you, but you need to take some deep breaths and tell me what's wrong,” Namjoon says in what Jimin has dubbed his 'follow-the-leader voice'—calm, with a hint of authority.



There's a long pause filled with loud, heavy breathing while Jungkook composes himself. “Hyung, it's Jimin. H–he was in an accident...and he had to be taken to the hospital.”



Namjoon drops his phone.





~





“Are you sure you're okay with this?” Namjoon can't seem to stop himself from asking as he hovers by the front door. “I could ask them to reschedule this meeting. It's not absolutely vital.”



Jimin heaves a sigh.“You'll only be gone a few hours and there will be other sessions. I'll live.” He means to be playful, but the resignation and bitterness wins out. Namjoon picks up on it, judging by his self-conscious wince.



“Right. See you in a bit.”



He crouches down and leans forward to lightly catch Jimin's lips in a soft kiss. Another sigh slips past Jimin's lips and is swallowed up by Namjoon's mouth. Relaxing slightly, Jimin cups Namjoon's face and returns the kiss. He loves it when Namjoon kisses him like this because it's as if nothing has happened. Jimin's heart still flutters in his chest and his skin still tingles. He hates to let Namjoon go because he takes the fantasy with him and reality comes crashing down on him like a guillotine.



“I'll be back as soon as I can,” Namjoon whispers against Jimin's lips.



“Take your time,” Jimin says significantly. Before Namjoon can start to kick himself, Jimin sweetens his words with a quick peck. “See you later.”



Namjoon nods. “Give Jungkook my regards.”



With that, he's finally out the door. Jimin flops against the back of his chair. He has about forty-five minutes until Jungkook will arrive to pick him up for physiotherapy. That's far too short a time to watch something on Netflix (he'd take that long just to make up his mind), but it's too long a time to let pass without having his mind engaged in some task or other.



Scrolling through his private Twitter feed, Jimin manges to kill about five minutes before he loses interest. For each video clip of puppies play-fighting, there are eight tweets detailing which promises the current government has supposedly failed to deliver. With a general election coming up in a few weeks, it figures that politics is all anyone is talking about. Namjoon has been uncharacteristically restrained about it, but Jimin is still fatigued with the whole process at this point. He just wants to watch kittens chasing butterflies.



With half an hour left to kill, Jimin opens up his 'Fun stuff :3' folder on his phone. After not checking it in such a long time, the folder has become a time capsule of sorts. Jimin bursts out laughing when he pulls up an old video of Jungkook lip-synching to some rock song and jumping around as he plays air guitar. More than the younger boy's antics, it's his hairstyle that has Jimin rolling. His laughter dies on his lips when he finds an even older video of himself and Jungkook doing cartwheels on the grass field of his old high school. He can practically feel his body begin to sink into the hole that has opened up beneath him, his wheelchair an anchor strapped to his legs.



Bzzz!



Jimin jerks in his chair. On the screen, there's a notification of a message from Jungkook.





im almost there. make sure youre ready to go

09:37





Jimin snorts without humour.





don't text and drive

09:37



and don't text me to tell me you're at a stop light

09:39





Jimin half-expects his phone to buzz again anyway, but Jungkook actually listens to him. He's also not sure how long 'almost' is (with Jungkook it could mean that he's just left his house or that he's pulling into the car park). At any rate, Jimin wheels himself over to the sofa to grab his bag and make sure he has his journal with him. He's slinging it over the back of his chair when the front door opens.



“Why do you still have our passcode?” Jimin frowns.



“Just in case,” Jungkook says vaguely, shrugging his shoulders.



The unspoken reason brings a bitter taste to Jimin's mouth. It's not until his tongue starts to sting that he realises he's bitten it.



“Whatever. Let's just go.”



“Do you want me to push you or...?” Jungkook trails off as he gestures to the self-propelled wheelchair Jimin is in today.



“I'll tell you if I get tired.” Jimin chews on the inside of his cheek. “I've been depending on the electric one too much.”



Jungkook shrugs again. “If you need it then you need it.”



Jimin scowls. He has to bite his wounded tongue to suppress an irrational, acerbic remark. He ducks his head and nods, wheeling himself out the door.





~





“Oh, Jungkook-ah!”



Jimin is pulled out of the trance of practice by Hoseok's loud greeting. He turns over his shoulder to see Hoseok pulling Jungkook deeper inside the practice room, his arm slung around the younger boy's shoulders. He's already grown taller than Hoseok, but with his head shyly bowed and his shoulders slumped like now, he still looks like the little fourteen year old who first joined the company.



“What brings you here?” Jimin brushes his sweaty fringe off his forehead with a few swipes of his hand.



“I've got some good news,” Jungkook beams, his posture straightening.



“What is it?” Hoseok tilts his head, his eyes a touch too wide.



Jimin bites back a laugh. He's ninety-nine percent certain that both he and Hoseok can guess what the big news is—after all, there's only one thing that any and every trainee is working towards. But it's Jungkook's moment, so he too feigns ignorance (though, hopefully better than Hoseok).



“I'm finally going to debut,” Jungkook announces with that full-faced grin that makes him look especially rabbity with his nose scrunched up cutely and his prominent incisors on display.



“Wah! Congratulations!” Hoseok thumps Jungkook on the back and shakes him by the shoulders.



“Thank you, hyung,” Jungkook giggles, suddenly pink in the cheeks. Jimin raises his eyebrows in interest. “I'm going to be a solo artist,” he adds almost bashfully.



“Wow, that's amazing.” This time Hoseok's surprise is real.



“Solo? Well done, Jungkookie.” Jimin pulls the younger man away from Hoseok to give him a hug. “I told you that you that getting cut from the group would lead to something better later down the line.”



“No, you didn't,” Jungkook scoffs.



In retaliation, Jimin squeezes him harder and leans back, lifting the taller boy off his feet. It's a much more arduous task now than it was even a year ago; the boy hasn't just gotten taller, he's got muscles now too—and the extra weight that goes with them. Before Jimin can drop him, a second pair of arms wrap around Jungkook and keep him hoisted in the air.



“Our ace, Jeon Jungkook! Multi-talented, Jeon Jungkook! Golden boy, Jeon Jungkook!” Hoseok bounces Jungkook with each chant of his name.



“What the hell?” Jimin giggles as Jungkook laughs helplessly. “What was that?”



Hoseok releases Jungkook and Jimin follows suit. Jungkook stumbles when he lands but manages to keep himself on his feet.



“That's his fan chant that I just made up.” Hoseok reaches up to affectionately ruffle Jungkook's hair. “Tell me when your debut showcase is. I want to be right up in the front waving a fan with your face printed on it.”



“And I'll be your fan site manager,” Jimin chimes in.



“You don't even have a real camera,” Jungkook says with a dismissive roll of his eyes. Jimin slaps his shoulder. Jungkook chuckles for a few second before the smile slips off his face and he starts to shuffle nervously on his feet. “To be honest, as excited as I am, I kind of wish I had someone to debut with like you two did,” he admits to the floor.



“Oh, Jungkookie,” Hoseok coos. He wraps his arms around the younger man from behind and gently bumps their heads together. The pink in Jungkook's cheeks darkens to red.



“Hey, it's alright to feel anxious, but you can't let it overpower you,” Jimin says soothingly even as he plans to mercilessly tease Jungkook for his apparent crush on Hoseok later on. “The company wouldn't debut you solo if they didn't think you could do it. I definitely think you can.”



“And so do I,” Hoseok adds. “I'm seriously going to be there for your first performance. That way, if you get nervous, just look for me and I'll boost your spirits with a cheer.”



“Thanks,” Jungkook mumbles around a smile.

 

Jimin pinches his cheeks with a grin.





~





“You alright being in the front?” Jungkook asks as he folds up Jimin's wheelchair.



“I didn't teleport to my previous sessions,” Jimin snaps. “And I sure as hell didn't fly home from the hospital.”



Jungkook raises his hands defensively and backs away until he disappears from Jimin's line of sight. Jimin heaves a sigh. He's always so quick to regret his cantankerous outbursts and churlish behaviour but that doesn't stop him from snapping the very next time he speaks. To think that Jungkook volunteered to take him physiotherapy. Jimin should've just called for a taxi.



“How's Namjoon-hyung been? Yoongi-hyung says he's not been in the studio in a long time.” Jungkook asks as they leave the car park and pull into traffic.



Jimin lifts and drops his shoulders in a limp shrug. “He's eating regularly, gets a good six hours of sleep a night and does my callisthenics with me. He's probably the healthiest he's been since he was discharged from the military.”



Jungkook snorts. “That's not what I meant and you know it.” He throws Jimin a side glance. Jimin feels it on the side of his head more than he can see it in the corner of his eyes.



“Eyes front.”



“Sorry.” Notwithstanding the monosyllabic apology, there is real contrition in his voice. It's gone when he speaks again. “Look, I'm not trying to be a third person in your relationship—”



Jimin chuckles despite himself as he remembers the unsubtle ways Jungkook used to crowd himself and Namjoon when they were still in the some phase of their relationship.



“—Shut up. That was years ago, and I liked him first anyway—but he doesn't even seem to know if you're still getting married or not. Even if you don't tell the rest of us yet, he should know.”



Jimin's laughter morphs into a sigh. “I don't really know either. We haven't talked about it since the crash.” To be more accurate, Jimin has stonewalled Namjoon's attempts at talking about the wedding.



“Do you think he doesn't want to anymore?” Jungkook can't stop himself from turning to glance at Jimin, but he turns back to the wheel before Jimin can scold him.



“No, I think he's probably still got the original date saved...”



“And why do you sound so unhappy about that? Do–do you not want to marry him anymore?”



To Jimin's surprise, the look in Jungkook's eyes is less curious and more furtive. Jimin watches him chew on his bottom lip and drum his fingers on the steering wheel for a full minute before he gets to the end of his patience. “You know something. What is it?”



Jungkook finally frees his bottom lip from its torture. “Okay, so, I'm not supposed to tell you this, but Namjoon-hyung definitely still wants to marry you.”



Jimin figured as much, but external confirmation makes his blood thrum as his heartbeat speeds up. “How do you know that?”



Jungkook tongues the inside of his cheek.



“Fuck's sake, man, just tell me!” Jimin gives his shoulder a hard smack.



“Ow! Shit, I'm fucking driving here,” Jungkook protests, glaring at Jimin.



“Don't swear at me, I'm your hyung,” Jimin scowls. “And I'm sorry.” He rubs the younger man's shoulder in apology. “How do you know?”



Jungkook looks like he's going to give Jimin the silent treatment until he hears the quiet desperation in Jimin's voice. At once, the petulance disappears from his demeanour. “He's been practising for your first dance,” he says softly.



“...Oh, fuck.”



“Jimin? Hyung, are you—” Jungkook cuts himself off when he catches sight of Jimin slumped in his seat with his hands covering his mouth, tears rolling down his face. It takes a little while for him to find a suitable spot, but he pulls over to the side and parks as soon as he's able to. “Hyung?” He lays a tentative hand on Jimin's shoulder. Jimin drops his hands from his face.



“That stupid promise. He's still trying to keep it. I can't...can't believe him,” Jimin weeps. “Even now. Does he really think—?” Jimin shakes his head but that doesn't make the spinning stop.



Jungkook rubs Jimin's back with one hand and fishes a pack of tissues out of his pocket with the other. Jimin takes the offered tissues and uses them to stem the flow of mucous and tears. It takes half the pack to get his face dry.



“You feeling any better?” Jungkook ventures after a few minutes of silent sniffling.



“A little,” Jimin admits sheepishly. Jungkook hums. “But I also feel worse. He's trying so hard and I can't even...”



Jungkook hums again. “Hyung, I'm not a doctor. I can't tell you if you'll ever walk with your own two feet again, but I think it's a goal worth trying for.”



“I definitely won't dance again,” Jimin mutters, his eyes slipping closed. He's never abided false hope about that, outright refused to have that carrot cruelly dangled in front of his face.



Jungkook's hand pauses its ministrations. “No, probably not.” Jimin's eyes sting with a fresh wave of tears. “But dancing isn't the only thing about you. You still have your voice. And your life,” he adds sombrely.



“What life?” Jimin mutters, the first out loud utterance of the sentiment that has been stewing in the back of his mind for the last six months.



A heavy sigh falls from Jungkook's lips. “It's yours and we'd give anything for you to have it: me, your parents and your brother, Hoseok-hyung and Yoongi-hyung—Namjoon-hyung most of all. If you truly don't want to, then you don't have to marry him. But you should do something.”



With that, Jungkook restarts the car and pulls back into traffic. The morning rush has died down, so even though they're running late, they should be able to get to the physiotherapy centre without too much trouble. For the rest of the ride, Jimin sits in silence and mulls over Jungkook's words. Just before Jungkook parks the car and disengages the engine, Jimin finds his voice.



“I'll do it.”



“Do what?” Jungkook asks.



Jimin runs the back of his hand across his face. “I might not be able to dance on stage again, but I will dance with my husband at my own fucking wedding, however poorly.” He frowns in determination.



Jungkook grins.





~





“Jungkook-ah!”



A slumped figure slowly lifts his head and Namjoon finds himself faced with pale, tear-streaked cheeks and bloodshot eyes. Ignoring the erratic thumping of his own heart, Namjoon drops into a crouch and pulls the younger man into a comforting embrace.



“It's alright. Jimin's strong, he'll be alright,” he murmurs into Jungkook's frazzled hair as he rubs the younger man's back. A few seconds pass with no response, and then suddenly the air is being squeezed out of Namjoon as Jungkook's hands fist in his shirt.



“How can you know that?” Jungkook cries, his voice cracking. “The only thing I know is that the ambulance took him to this hospital. I don't know anything else! The nurses won't tell me anything about how he's doing.”



“I know, I know, and not knowing is scary, but we'll find out soon. Jimin's brother is already on his way. Hoseok's picking him up from the train station. It won't be long now. Just be patient, Kookie. You can do that for me, right? Be patient for Jimin.” Namjoon opens his eyes, not knowing when he closed them and not knowing how much of what he just said was for his own benefit and how much was for Jungkook's.



“Okay,” Jungkook hiccups.



It's entirely the wrong time, but it's so cute that Namjoon can't help but smile. Standing up, he gently ruffles the younger man's hair. Jungkook lets him, even leans into it. Namjoon's smile fades as he looks around and remembers where he is.



“Did you come here alone?”



Jungkook nods.



“Have you eaten?”



Jungkook narrows his eyes. “I'm not hungry and I'm not tired and I don't need to use the bathroom. I'm not moving from here until Hoseok-hyung arrives with Sungmin.” He crosses his arms over his chest.



“Alright, I get it. I won't make you leave, but I'm going to get some food and you will eat it.”



Before Jungkook can argue, Namjoon turns on his heel and speed-walks down the corridor. He gets all the way to the end before he realises that he has no idea where to find the canteen—if this hospital even has one. He could go to a cafe just down the road, but the last thing he wants to do is walk back to the entrance and pass Jungkook with empty hands. So, Namjoon just keeps walking around in the hope that he'll stumble upon a vending machine.



With each step forward, the thumping of his own heartbeat rings in his ears, getting louder and louder. He put up a good front for Jungkook, but the truth is he feels just as lost. There are a lot of curve balls and wild cards that have cropped up in Namjoon's relatively short life—so many shocks and surprises and disappointments that he's had to shake off and roll with and adapt to—but this is the worst by far. Getting into Yonsei was his more his mother's dream than his own; failing that was a blow to his scholastic pride, but music was his real passion anyway. Getting told to his face that he wasn't attractive enough to perform his own raps hurt, but at least he could at least take comfort in the fact that his music was still being heard and loved by many. The thought of never being able to compose another melody or write a lyric to it's tune is physically painful, but he'd drop it without a second thought if he could only keep Jimin with him. He'd do anything to keep Jimin with him.



“Please,” he desperately whispers, hot tears streaming down his face as he continues to stalk the corridors like a madman. “Don't take him away from me. I can't—not Jimin. Please.”



It's anywhere between ten minutes and an hour before Hoseok texts to let him know that he's arrived at the hospital with Sungmin. Namjoon has no idea where he is now—is frankly surprised that no-one has called security on him—but it doesn't really matter anyway because the nurse ultimately ends up telling Sungmin what they had all figured anyway.



...critical condition...surgeons are doing their best...prepare for the worst...





~





“Welcome home,” Jimin grunts, half way through what looks to be a leg raise.



Namjoon blinks in surprise. “Hey. What's going on?”



He kicks off his shoes and takes in the altered landscape of their living room. Most of the furniture has been pushed to the sides of the room and Jimin sits in the clear space in the middle on a large yoga mat.



“I asked Jungkook to move the furniture when he dropped me off. I hope you don't mind,” Jimin says almost bashfully as he peers up at Namjoon through his fringe. “I think my focus is much better when I've got the extra space. It's kind of like being back in the practice room.”



“No, I don't mind,” Namjoon is quick to shake his head. “I just...huh. Did you have a good session today?” He drops down next to Jimin, crossing his legs.



“Yeah, I got a real good kick up the ass today,” Jimin says wistfully.



Namjoon frowns. “Is something wrong?”



Jimin chews on the inside of his bottom lip for a moment before he struggles into a sitting position. Namjoon instinctively lifts his hands to offer assistance, but keeps them in check when he spots the stubborn determination in Jimin's eyes. As he pauses to catch his breath, Jimin shakes his and runs his hands through his hair to brush it out of his eyes. Jimin turns back to him, slightly out of breath, forehead exposed and rivulets of sweat running down his face. It's a look that Namjoon has always been weak to.



Namjoon swallows his arousal. “Did something happen?”



Jimin doesn't reply. He simply stares at Namjoon, his brown eyes swirling with a thousand emotions as he searches Namjoon's face. Namjoon sits still, his expression open. The silence stretches on. Namjoon twiddles his fingers in his lap, absently hoping the movement doesn't throw off whatever Jimin is trying to achieve. The thought barely passes through his head before a small hand grips the back of his neck and yanks him forward.



“Ji—?”



Jimin's soft lips cushion his fall. Then they're moving against Namjoon's with a fervour that Jimin hasn't shown in what feels like a lifetime. Namjoon's mouth falls open in shock and a hot, wet tongue is quick to slip past his teeth and tangle with his own. A small hand trails down his chest until it reaches the growing lump in Namjoon's jeans. The hand gives his crotch a very firm squeeze and that's when Namjoon jumps and pulls away.



“W–what's gotten into you?”



Jimin's visage darkens. “Is that all you can say? Expressions of concern?” He all but rips the button and zipper of Namjoon's jeans off and shoves his hand past the waistband of Namjoon's boxers. “Try again.” He takes hold of Namjoon's rapidly hardening cock and gives it several firm pumps, twisting his wrist as he goes.



“F–fuck!” Namjoon doubles over, his forehead landing on Jimin's shoulder. “I—Shit.”



“That's better.”



Namjoon blinks in shock when he's suddenly staring up at the light fixture on the ceiling, his back on the yoga mat. He whimpers when Jimin's hand releases him.



“God, how long has it been?” Jimin groans as he hastily shimmies out of his sweatpants.



“A while,” Namjoon breathes.



They've exchanged kisses, but they've all been so chaste, and Namjoon has been too busy fussing over Jimin's health to entertain the thought of going any further. Even if he had, it would've looked a lot more soft—tender lovemaking in their bed, not frenzied groping in the middle of their living room floor. But Namjoon is good at rolling with surprises.



“Should I do myself?” he asks, gesturing to the tent in his underwear.



Jimin grabs his wrists and plants his hands on either side of his head. Namjoon keeps them there. It's difficult, especially when Jimin grimaces in obvious pain as he struggles to throw one of his legs over Namjoon's hips. He unclenches his hands when Jimin is finally straddling him, face heavily flushed red.



“G–good, you didn't move,” Jimin pants. “Since you've been good, I'll give you your reward.” He wraps one hand around Namjoon's flagging erection and strokes it back to full hardness. That achieved, Jimin spits on his hand and really goes to town.



“Shit,” Namjoon groans, arching his back into the touch. “Ah, ah, oh, fuck.”



Dull pain blooms in the back of his head as he thumps it against the mat. It's almost embarrassing to be losing it so easily, but he's hardy even touched himself in the last six months. Having Jimin's familiar weight on his thighs and his familiar hand on his cock is nothing short of heaven. He's too far gone to be embarrassed about how long he lasts.



“I—Jimin, I'm—”



“Shh, I know, let go,” Jimin whispers into Namjoon's mouth. He sucks and nibbles on Namjoon's lip.



Namjoon jolts. His entire body seizes up before he hits his peak and the tension bleeds out of him all at once. “Shit...” He'd almost forgotten how great an orgasm can be. When he catches his breath, he peels his eyes open just in time to see Jimin reaching his own climax.



“O–oh God!”



Namjoon eagerly drinks in the image of Jimin above him—his face redder than ever and his mouth opening and closing wordlessly as he fists his cock—before hot cum hits his chin and he's forced to close his eyes.



“Holy shit,” Jimin pants breathlessly as globs of cum spray out all over Namjoon's face.



Long after the stream stops, Namjoon keeps his eyes closed, opening them only when a couple of small fingers start to paint his lips with some of the residual cum. Jimin stares right back at him as he pushes his fingers past Namjoon's lips and wipes the bitter liquid all over the inside of his mouth.



“You filthy animal,” Namjoon scoffs the instant Jimin removes his fingers.



Jimin laughs, his eyes scrunching up beautifully in an expression that Namjoon hasn't been graced with in several months. He lifts his shirt to wipe the cum off his face before it can dry and flake.



“I think we should go swimming.”



“Huh?” Namjoon blinks up at Jimin.



“Not right now, but sometime this week? I think it would be really good for my recovery.”



Namjoon knows that it would be good because the doctors recommended it months ago.



“Yeah, okay, that sounds like a great idea,” he nods.



Jimin chews on the inside of his cheek for a moment. Namjoon holds him around his waist when he slumps forward and buries his nose in the crook of Namjoon's neck.



“I'm so sorry,” Jimin whispers into Namjoon's skin.



“What for?” Namjoon kisses Jimin's sweaty hair.





~





“Please, Jimin, five spoonfuls is all I'm asking for. Your body can't recover properly if it doesn't get the nutrients it needs.”



Spectacular is the soup indeed that could heal his nerve damage. Jimin clenches his teeth so hard that a muscle in his jaw jumps.



“Three spoonfuls? You have to eat something. Jimin, please.”



Beneath the sheets, Jimin digs his fingernails harder into sides of his thighs. The warm wetness on his fingertips and the space under his fingernails is the only indication of blood being drawn. There's barely a hint of a pressure—let alone pain—response being sent to his brain from his legs. He digs his fingers in harder.



Namjoon sighs heavily, leaning back in the chair beside the bed. “Jimin, I can't help you if you don't allow me. Please let me help you.”



Jimin's eye twitches at the sound of that word again. 'Please'...As if Jimin wanted his body to be broken.



Namjoon rubs his face with his hands. “Minnie, I know that this is hard for you—well, I don't truly know but—What are you doing?” he frowns, pulling back the duvet that covers Jimin's lower half.



Namjoon's eyes double in size. Seconds—or minutes? Hours?—tick by before Namjoon tentatively looks up at Jimin. Jimin boldly returns the stare.



“This isn't...Please don't do this to yourself.”



Jimin wants to be angry, wants to take the ire simmering under his skin and ignite it into a firestorm that swallows him whole. Because being angry is better than feeling helpless. And feeling helpless is simply unbearable when you actually are helpless.



He opens his mouth to fire off a remark that will hopefully get that flame lit, but his lips are already trembling. A sob, not a barb, comes out. The tears are quick to follow and now he and Namjoon have a matching set. At the light touch of Namjoon's hands, Jimin releases his legs, letting his hands flop to the mattress. Namjoon firmly but gently holds Jimin's hands in his, running his thumbs over the skin of Jimin's palms. His earlier strength depleted, Jimin can only lightly curl his fingers over Namjoon's.



He manages four spoonfuls of the soup.





~





“I can't believe you seriously called me here at two in the morning for this,” Yoongi grumbles as he closes the practice room door behind him. He winces at the fluorescent light and shields his eyes with his hands. “Worse, my dumbass actually agreed. Why did I agree to this when I have a deadline for three unfinished songs hanging over my head?”



“Because you know how important this is to me and, as my best friend, you'd do anything you could to help me have some peace of mind on the biggest day of my life?” Namjoon raises his eyebrows hopefully.



Yoongi hums thoughtfully. “Nah, that doesn't sound like me.” He shakes his head.



Hoseok snorts. Namjoon rolls his eyes, far too inured to this side of Yoongi's personality to take offence.



“You say that, but you went and bought us snacks.” Jungkook points to the bag hanging surreptitiously hanging at Yoongi's side. “Even though you like to moan and grumble, you're a dependable hyung who always comes when we call,” Jungkook smiles, his eyes cloudy with fondness.



Hoseok half-turns and makes a face at Namjoon who covers his mouth to stifle his laughter.



“You know, you're right, I simply am too altruistic for my own good,” Yoongi sighs.



“Okay, right, let's continue.” Hoseok claps his hands. “Hyung, put your bag down and get into position.” He waves his hand where Namjoon is standing.



“What do I have to do again?” Yoongi drops his bag by the door. It's immediately set upon by Jungkook.



“Nothing,” Hoseok grins, spreading his hands in a wide gesture. “I'm no doctor, but I highly doubt Jimin will be waltzing around in six weeks. Namjoon has been practising the steps on his own, but now he needs to get used to doing it while supporting someone else's weight.”



“Why can't one of you just do it?” Yoongi's voice slips into a whine.



“I'm way too tall and Hoseok-hyung is too skilled,” Jungkook speaks up, his cheek full of dried squid. “You're perfect because you're the same height and weight as Jimin-hyung and you aren't trained in dance so you'll be easy to lead.”



“Did you just call me a midget who can't dance?” Yoongi cocks an eyebrow.



Jungkook grins. “You said it.”



“Hey, hey, come on, hyung. You can murder Jungkook later.” Namjoon urges Yoongi forward, turning him away from the boy giggling at the other side of the room.



“Fine,” Yoongi huffs. “Where do I put my hands?”



“Uh, wrap them around my neck, I guess.”



That's the way Namjoon has always imagined this moment: Jimin pressed close, his full cheeks lightly flushed as he slyly glances between Namjoon's eyes and lips. It doesn't feel quite as right peering down st Yoongi's dark circles. Judging by the way Yoongi is refusing to look directly at Namjoon, staring instead at a point over Namjoon's shoulder, Namjoon knows that he's feeling similarly awkward.



“...Or how about you put your left hand and mine and place your right hand on my shoulder? Yeah, like that.” They're still close, but it's a closeness that Namjoon can abide. “I'm gonna start swaying now.”



“Hyung, make sure you lean some of your weight on Namjoon,” Hoseok speaks up. Amazingly, there's not a hint of mirth in his voice or his expression. By contrast, Jungkook is sprawled on the floor, his outstretched phone wobbling as he shakes with laughter.



“Namjoon-ah, dance us over there, will you?” Yoongi says airily.



Namjoon has already been practising for an hour and Yoongi, fully immersed in the role of Jimin, is barely supporting any of his own weight. His legs are tired and his arm ache, but Namjoon closes his eyes and thinks of pouty lips and scrunched eyes and he gets a burst of energy. Yoongi lets out a surprised whoop as he's lifted off his feet and spun in Namjoon's arms.



“Oh, damn, I think I just fell for you,” Yoongi says in that blank and slightly dazed way of his which means he's either just been floored or he's being sarcastic.



“God, it's late,” Hoseok mutters to his watch. “Alright, I think that's enough for today.”



Namjoon's phone vibrates in his back pocket. At this hour, there's only one person it could be. “Yeah, I'm really tired now.”



Yoongi pouts, “I only just got here.” He beseechingly slaps Namjoon's shoulder. “Come on, Namjoon, one more lift.”



“Jungkook should do it,” Hoseok counters with a smirk. Jungkook's eyes bug out of his head.



Namjoon uses the ensuing distraction to slip away and sneakily check his messages.





where are you? i woke up to pee and couldn't find you :<

02:37

 



Namjoon chuckles as he types up his reply. The message is sent and read before his brain catches up to his fingers.





I've been in the practice room with Jungkook and Hoseok

02:38





He slaps his forehead. “Fuck.”



“What's the issue?” Jungkook plops his chin on Namjoon's shoulder.



Namjoon holds up his phone so he can better see the screen. “I think I blew the surprise for Jimin,” he winces.



Jungkook scratches the back of his neck. “Not necessarily.”



“I still don't get the insistence on the secret squirrel act.” At Namjoon's pout, Yoongi continues, “But fine, just say you were helping me with some songs in the studio, then we ran into these two preparing for that rumoured sub-unit.” He rolls his eyes.



Namjoon perks up. “Good thinking, hyung.”





Sorry, Minnie, didn't mean for you to wake up alone. I got sucked into some work with Yoongi and then we got talking to Hoseok and Jungkook.

02:40



np! :] just be careful on your way back okay

02:43



tell everyone I say hi

02:43





“We got away with it,” Namjoon grins. Jungkook nods emphatically.



“Right, well, if that's it, I'm gonna head back to the studio,” Yoongi says, already half out the door.



“Really, hyung?” Hosoek frowns. He follows after Yoongi, his voice fading as he goes. “I'm gonna text Seokjin-hyung and let him know that you're not...”



“How's Jimin been lately?” Jungkook asks when the two of them are alone.



Namjoon smiles. “Better. In several ways.”



“That's good to hear,” Jungkook says around a yawn.



“Do you want a ride back?”



Jungkook nods slowly, his eyelids drooping. Namjoon chuckles fondly at the sight of him. “Come on then.” He beckons the younger man to follow him. They're climbing inside his car when his phone buzzes again.





joonie, I just want you to know that you don't have to go overboard with whatever you're working on. i'm sure i'll love it no matter what :3

02:55



and I know I said to be careful but hurry up a /little/ bit. I'm waiting up for you ^^

02:57





With only a handful of cars on the road, it takes only half an hour for Namjoon to complete his journey (and good chunk of that time is spent rousing Jungkook from sleep outside his apartment complex). When he steps inside his own apartment, he's met with the sight of Jimin nodding off on the living room sofa. As if possessed, Namjoon stalks over to the sofa and lightly brushes Jimin's hair off his face.



“Huh? Oh, welcome back, Joonie,” Jimin mumbles sleepily, blinking heavily up at Namjoon.



Namjoon shakes his head fondly. “You should've just gone back to bed. You still need your rest.”



“I thought about it,” Jimin says around a jaw-cracking yawn, “but then I realised that there's something we still need to talk about.” He pats the space next to him.



“What is it?” Namjoon asks as he sits down, trying to keep the flash of panic out of his voice.



“It's nothing bad,” Jimin quickly insists. Namjoon breathes a little easier. “It's just...we've kind of both been dancing around it and I think it's past time we face it head on.” Jimin pauses, his brow furrowing as he frowns. “No, correction, the time is absolutely right. This would've been a complete mess of a conversation a few weeks ago...” He runs his hand through his hair.



Namjoon takes hold of his hand and gives it a gentle reassuring squeeze. He lifts it to his lips and drops a kiss on Jimin's wrist before he lets go. Jimin grabs it before he can get too far. Namjoon chuckles.



“Go on, then. I'm listening.”



“Right, okay.” Jimin nods, but spends a minute playing with their joined hands before he continues. “You know, it's technically your turn, but I'll take responsibility this time,” he says, still staring at their hands.



Namjoon tilts his head in question.



“I know it can't be helped—the surgeons had to cut all my rings off—but I feel bad about not having the one you gave me when you still have the one I got you,” Jimin says softly.



Namjoon sucks in a breath as his heart starts beating just a little faster. Jimin finally looks up from their hands. He's chewing his lower lip.



“I'm almost afraid to name it considering our previous luck—the scandal after the first time and then the accident after the second time. The third time is supposed to be the charm, though? So, Kim Namjoon, will you marry me?”



“Jimin...” It's already difficult to see in the low light in the room. It's even harder with eyes full of tears.



“I don't care if we just go to the courthouse and grab a pizza on our way back home. We don't have to go on a honeymoon, you don't even need to take any more time off work. I've still got a long road to recovery and I just want to do it with you as my husband. I love you.”



“Minnie, me wanting to marry you was never in doubt. No matter what happened in the past—” Jimin ducks his head. Namjoon gently lifts his chin. “—and no matter what lies ahead in the future. I just want to be with you.”



“You've got me,” Jimin smiles a watery smile. “I can't really run now so...”



Against his will, a laugh tumbles from Namjoon's lips. “That's not funny.”



Jimin chuckles, his eyes shinning. “Speaking of which, you should probably be the one to do the alter walk. I'd get there eventually, but not before our guests would have listened to five loops of Pachelbel.”



“Yes, dear.”



Jimin giggles.





~





As could be expected, Jimin is still unsteady on his feet, but Namjoon's arms are a strong and steady support system. He gives Jimin as long as he needs to settle himself and find his balance on top of Namjoon's shoes before he begins to sway on the spot, humming under his breath. It takes Jimin a while to recognise the song with Namjoon slowing the tempo, but when he does, he bursts out laughing.



“Really? You seriously want us to slow dance to 'Boyz with Fun' as the first dance at our wedding?”



“Why not?” Namjoon gently spins the both of them around. “It's a crowd pleaser and a fan favourite and you've always wanted to call me up for the fan service dance break. When else but our wedding day to make that dream come true?”



“You're ridiculous,” Jimin giggles, clinging tightly to Namjoon's body.



“You're the boy and I'm the fun.” Namjoon pulls back and flashes Jimin a wink.



“Pffft as if. I'm the fun and you're the boy.” He puckers his lips, beckoning Namjoon for a kiss.



“Yes, dear.”



Jimin grins. “I know you only say that when you're being sarcastic, but I actually really like hearing you call me that. Say it again.”



Namjoon laughs gently. “Yes, dear.”



“And again?”



“Oi,” Namjoon growls softly, tightening his hold before he twirls them around a few times.



The increased speed in their movement puts a cramp in Jimin's legs as he strains to keep himself upright, but he holds off on telling Namjoon to stop until the pain becomes too much to ignore.



“Sorry, sorry, I got ahead of myself,” Namjoon says with an apologetic wince. “Are you alright?” He walks them over to one of the tables and he pulls out a chair.



“I'll live,” Jimin groans as he eases into the chair, stretching and massaging his legs. “But you'll definitely need to give my legs a proper rub down this evening.



Namjoon cocks an eyebrow. “Sexy or functional?”



“You ridiculous—” Jimin aims a slap at Namjoon's thigh, but he's shaking so hard with laughter that he misses entirely.



“Whoa, careful.” Namjoon reaches out and steadies Jimin before he can fall of his chair.



“Thanks,” Jimin says through his diminishing laughter.



“Should we officially call this rehearsal a wrap? Jin-hyung has been incessantly texting me about adhering to the twenty-four hour separation rule.”



“Is that actually a thing?” Jimin frowns in thought.



Namjoon shrugs. “Frankly, I think Jin-hyung is just throwing his weight around as punishment for confirming the date so late. He had to pack in a lot of extra filming for his drama to make sure he could get half the day off.”



“Awww, and he's already so overworked. I feel really bad about getting caught up in my melodrama.” Jimin wilts in his seat.



Namjoon goes around the back of his chair and rubs Jimin's shoulders.



“Don't be; we never actually cancelled the ceremony, so he shouldn't have double booked.”



Jimin cranes his head back. “Have a heart.”



“Easy for you to say, it's not your bachelor party he's commandeered,” Namjoon mutters



Jimin laughs, lightly slapping Namjoon's thigh.



Namjoon gives his shoulder one more rub. “Alright, I'll get you your crutches and then we can head out.”



“Wait.” Jimin grabs Namjoon's arm. “One more dance?” he asks sweetly, exaggerating his lisp in that way that always makes Namjoon weaken and waver.



“Well, yeah, okay. Why not?” Namjoon takes a step back and holds out his arm. “May I have this dance?”



“Certainly,” Jimin smiles brightly, slipping his hand in the crook of Namjoon's elbow.



Namjoon doesn't bother to hum this time, but Jimin doesn't care. On the eve of the biggest day of his life (debut be damned), a day that Jimin very nearly missed out on, his head is buzzing with too many thoughts to focus on following a beat. The only thing that he wants is softly smiling down at him, dimples popping in his cheeks. Jimin lets his eyes slip shut, sighing as a tear leaks out of each of his eyes and slowly roll down his face. They don't get far before they're being whisked away by the slightly rough pad of Namjoon's thumbs.



Hold me tight, hug me. Can you trust me, can you trust me. Please, please, please pull me in and hug me,” Jimin sings quietly as he sways with Namjoon.



“That's lovely,” Namjoon breathes. “Is that something for a solo?”



Jimin opens his eyes. “No, it's a labour of love by an old friend. And the song we're actually dancing to.”



Namjoon clicking his tongue is all the warning Jimin gets before he's hefted off his feet and spun around. Jimin clings to Namjoon, his laughter bouncing off the walls of the empty hall.