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Love, I have Wounds

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Having Jimin running around in a room in his underwear because he can't find those damn pants he's been wanting to wear since months now is always an experience.

Jungkook sits on his bed, half paying attention to his friend, half scrolling through his timeline on Twitter.

“Why aren't you getting ready?” Jimin asks, half of his body inside the closet as he throws behind his back clothes he doesn't need.

“I am ready.” Jungkook replies, eyes on his phone as he sits cross-legged on Jimin's bed.

Jimin emerges back from the closet with a look of disbelief on his face “You're just wearing the same shit you always wear.”

“It's my brand.”

“No, it's you being a lazy motherfucker.” Jimin sighs and gets back in the closet “Whatever, I stopped trying with you a long time ago.”

Jungkook sighs and locks his phone “Look, hyung, I didn't even wanna come tonight, so why don't you give me some slack?”

“I still don't understand why you wouldn't wa- FOUND THEM!” Jimin pulls back with a pair of faux leather pants and a huge grin on his face “Oh, I'm gonna get the dicking of a lifetime tonight.”

Jungkook breathes in deeply “This is exactly why I don't wanna go. I don't want to get drunk as you grind your ass on Yoongi-hyung's dick. At least not again.”

Jimin arches an eyebrow at him, already shrugging on the pants “Don't be absurd. I never do that. Goddamn, these are tight.”

“You never do that when you're sober.” Jungkook corrects him “The moment you get some tequila in you, you're just twerking like an extra in a Nicki Minaj music video.”

Jimin manages to put on the pants, he zips them up “Look, Namjoon-hyung and Hoseok-hyung will be there, too. So don't worry too much about that.”

Jungkook's eyebrows rise up “Oh, so now I'll have to watch Hoseok-hyung grinding his crotch on Joon-hyung's thigh as well, that's just fucking great.”

Jimin's arms slump down to his waist, he licks his lips giving Jungkook a long look “Listen, I haven't seen Taehyung in years. Years, Jungkook. He's finally moving to Seoul, I want you two to meet. You guys are my best friends, this means a lot to me.”

Jungkook knows this and he also knows he's being an asshole to this whole thing. Jimin rarely asks him anything, let alone favors of any sort. For once that he simply asks Jungkook to meet his actual best friend, brother, soulmate or whatever, he's being a petty ass about it.

Jungkook heaves a sigh “Okay, you're right, sorry. You're right, I already agreed, it would be shitty to bail out.”

“Exactly.” Jimin goes back at tugging the dress shirt in his pants “Besides, you're the one who said you were feeling kinda down lately, Taehyung is like an energy buzzer. You'll love him, really.”

Jungkook just hums to this, quickly turning his attention back on his phone. He's not feeling down, it's not that. It's really not that simple. But since he's the first one who doesn't have any idea as to what is actually going on lately (which is bullshit, he does know, he just doesn't want to think about it), he doesn't say anything.

“Okay.” Jimin nods to the mirror and then turns to Jungkook “How do I look?”

Jungkook takes a long glance at Jimin, up from his blonde hair, down to his thighs squeezed in those damn pants.

“Like you're begging for Yoongi to dick you down.”

“Look like I achieved the wanted outfit, then.” Jimin grabs his phone from the bedside table and hisses “Shit, we're late, Yoongi is already downstairs, let's go.”





On the car ride, Jungkook manages to focus on the harsh rap coming from the car radio and tunes out all the filth Yoongi and Jimin are telling each other. Not the nasty kind of filth, that's reserved for when they're drunk, just the “grossly in love couple” kind of filth. Jungkook isn't about that life, hell no.

Instead, he keeps his eyes trained on the scenery outside the window, the cars speeding by, the lights of Seoul at night almost blurring in lines once Yoongi presses on the gas to hurry before a speeding light turns red. He thinks about Taehyung, too.

Jimin has been talking about Taehyung ever since Jungkook met him two years ago. Taehyung the childhood friend, Taehyung the crazy friend, Taehyung the insane artist, Taehyung the soulmate, Taehyung also known as Jimin's first time because, again, soulmates and all that jazz.

Jungkook has heard all kinds of stories about Taehyung and, if he has to be honest, he is kind of curious to meet the man who actually met Zico in a goddamn toilet of a nightclub and had challenged him to a dick size competition.

And since Taehyung has finally moved back to Korea and, most importantly, in Seoul, Jungkook knows he will meet him more from now on so it's better to just get the awkward introductory phase done as soon as possible.







Yoongi parks the car somewhere in the middle of nowhere because “I will not pay those assholes six thousand fucking Won for a goddamn parking spot, you need to learn this shit as well Kook, hyung is giving you a motherfucking life lesson”.

So they walk for like fifteen full minutes before they finally see the club, a long cue already in front of the entrance, although Jungkook knows they're gonna skip it since Namjoon is a friend of the owner. Leave it to Namjoon to know all kinds of shady people who own shady businesses.

Jimin walks faster, his eyes scanning the crowd “He said he's here, so-”

Jungkook starts looking around as well. He has seen some pictures but, for some reason, all of Taehyung's selcas are blurry as fuck so it's not that easy to make out his face. He gets quickly distracted once his eyes land on a guy who's leaning with his back against the wall, eyes fixed on the screen of his phone, a half-smoked cigarette between his lips. Jungkook actually stops walking to stare because goddamn, that guy's beautiful. Actually fucking beautiful, with greyish hair framing his face, messy and kind of long, long lashes and lips glossy with balm and fucking gold powder on his cheekbones.

“Tae!” Jimin shrieks as he runs past Jungkook, the guy he's been staring at lifting his head up and the hugest smile Jungkook has ever seen on someone's face stretches his lips.

Jimin literally jumps him, his legs wrapping around Taehyung's waist and arms around his neck. Taehyung laughs and hugs him, keeping him up after a few stumbling backward steps.

“Shit!” Taehyung exclaims “Shit, I missed you so fucking much!”

Beside him, Yoongi sighs and crosses his arms “He's as loud as ever.”

Jungkook hums, watching Taehyung tuck his face in the crook of Jimin's neck, who's still wrapped around his friend as if his life depends on him.

“Woah!” Taehyung looks up “Don't cry, what the fuck?”

Jimin finally lets go of Taehyung and laughs, rubbing his hands on his cheeks “I'm so happy to see you, give me a break!”

“I'm happy, too! I missed you like a madman, Chim.” Taehyung is still smiling in this weird way that has Jungkook feeling like he wants to smile as well “May I say, your thighs look ravishing.”

Yoongi, once again, just sighs.

“You got taller!” Jimin says, tilting his head to the side “And thicker, what's up with that?”

“You keep sending me pics of your ass, I felt like I needed to step up my game.” Taehyung pauses “That and too many brioches.”

Jimin giggles and then turns, finally, to them “Ah, sorry, Yoongi probably wants to say hi, too.”

“Yeah,” Yoongi nods “Hi, Tae.”

Taehyung nods solemnly “Yoongi-hyung, you're as small and majestic as ever.”

“That I am.”

Taehyung turns his eyes on Jungkook and his smile turns more into a grin “Who's thick thighs, here?”

“Thick-” Jungkook splutters, hoping to God he's not blushing.

“That's Jungkook, I told you I wanted you guys to meet, right?” Jimin says “Tae, Jungkook. Jungkook, Tae.”

“You're the guy who's been keeping Jimin working whilst I was away, I'm guessing?” Taehyung holds out a hand that Jungkook shakes, even though it does feel like some sort of business deal.

“That would be me.”

“You always get the hot ones, unbelievable.” Taehyung mutters, Jungkook feels a headache coming “Should we go in? I wanna get drunk and make mistakes.”



They skip the line easily, mentioning Namjoon's special list and the staff member at the entrance finding their names on it.

Inside, the club is chaos. The first floor, the one where they are, is packed with people dancing to the beats of a terrible remix of an old Drake's song, bodies moving wildly, blue neon laser lights darting across the dance floor, music loud and vibrating in Jungkook's chest.

Yoongi motions him to the stairs that lead to the VIP floor, where Namjoon and Hoseok are waiting for them. Taehyung and Jimin are walking side by side, still smiling like they've seen the sun for the first time in forever and Jungkook briefly wonders as to how Yoongi still hasn't thrown hands.

Upstairs, the music is still loud but less deafening, there are far fewer people and there's an open bar, Jungkook is suddenly a lot happier. They easily spot Namjoon and Hoseok sitting on one of the couches at the booths, chatting with their fingers intertwined, Hoseok nodding to something Namjoon says until his eyes land on them.

“Ayo!” he shouts, Namjoon startles “You guys are late!”

“Sorry about that, Jimin-hyung couldn't find the I wanna get fucked pants.” Jungkook says once they're at the booth and sitting down already. He receives a slap on the back of his nape from Yoongi and a laugh from Taehyung.

“Truer words were never spoken.” Jimin says with a relaxed smile, then he points at Taehyung “Tae, these are Namjoon-hyung and Hoseok-hyung, the other couple.”

“Good to meet you.” Taehyung once again shakes hands with both of them “Jimin told me a lot about you two.”

“I hope only good things.” Namjoon says.

“He told me you two are famous in your college because they caught you fucking in the library.”

Namjoon's smile disappears “Yes. I see.”

Hoseok quickly reaches for the nearest glass of whatever drink he's having “Well, I say we get drunk!”

“Yes, please.” Yoongi mutters.



Too many rounds of tequila later, Jimin and Yoongi disappeared somewhere on the dance floor, Namjoon and Hoseok are making out on the couch and, obviously, Taehyung and Jungkook are left alone awkwardly glancing at each other with a glass of liquor.

Jungkook is, by the way, having a hard time. With a really tipsy mind, bordering on drunk, Taehyung is ethereal in a way that is both unsettling and oddly satisfying. Jungkook likes pretty people, everybody does, but Taehyung is just gorgeous. It's confidence, Jungkook thinks, that makes him look probably better than he already is. And that damn gold powder.

“This is awkward,” Taehyung says, standing up “I have weed, wanna get high?”

Jungkook sighs “Fuck yeah.”





The back of the club is fucking dirty. Jungkook grimaces once he spots what must be a used syringe and sighs, Taehyung already putting between his lips the joint and lighting it up, taking quick drags until the flame finally sets. He inhales deeply and then exhales, thick smoke gathering around his face, a little flushed from the alcohol.

He passes the smoke to Jungkook “You go to college with Min?”

“Yeah.” Jungkook replies after taking a drag “Dance department as well.”

“The thighs are explained.”

“You know, not all dancers have thick thighs.”

“It seems like a recurring aesthetic.”

“I just hit the gym a lot.”

Taehyung nods, a smirk spreading “And boy, am I grateful for that.”

Jungkook snorts. It's the alcohol and weed, otherwise, he knows he'd be either blushing or making a fool of himself. Sue him, Kim Taehyung looks like a vision, anyone would make a fool of themselves.

“So,” Taehyung takes the joint from him, his fingers are long and slender, nails painted rose gold “Jimin told me a lot about you, too.”

“Oh, no.”

“Nah, it's cool.” Taehyung chuckles “He says you're a really nice guy, you've been there for him and all that stuff.”

Meanwhile, Jungkook can hear Babe by Hyuna coming muffled from inside the club.

“He talks about you all the time, too.” Jungkook takes a drag that is a bit too long, smoke burning in his lungs and throat, he coughs a bit “Dick size competition with Zico?”

“Ah,” Taehyung sighs dreamily “My finest adventures. What a time. And what a dick.”

Jungkook laughs at that, leaning against the wall, Taehyung smiling as well.

“You've been in France, right?” Jungkook asks “All this time, I mean.”

“Yeah, spent the last three years of my life there.” Taehyung answers, tapping with his index against the joint before putting it back between his lips “It's fucking beautiful, you know? France is fucking amazing.”

“Where did you stay?”

Taehyung squints his eyes “I've stayed in Nice for two months, then moved to Lyon and stayed for like two weeks or something, then Brest and finally Paris, I stayed there for the rest of the time.”

Jungkook knows his eyes must have become huge “Holy shit. For work, right?”

Taehyung nods, gives the joint to Jungkook “Yeah, had to move a lot for various commissions until I started working from Paris alone. Traveling is tiring, man, especially on European buses.”

“I just realized I'm smoking weed with a famous artist.” Jungkook giggles, kind of lamely. He's high.

Taehyung, though, just smiles “I ain't that great. But I am overpaid, which is always nice.”

“You liked it there, what made you come back?”

Taehyung swallows, looks down at his feet, his smile falters just a bit, enough for Jungkook to notice. When he looks back up, there's none of that energy from before “Missed home, I guess.”

That's a lie. Jungkook is good at reading people, he's actually good at a lot of things, but fucking excellent at detecting bullshit. But he doesn't know Taehyung enough so he keeps quiet.

“Since you stayed in Paris you must have seen the Mona Lisa and shit.”

Taehyung's smile actually completely disappears “I've never seen an uglier portrait in my entire life.”

Jungkook almost loses grip on the joint “Wait, what?”

“It's so ugly. I mean, it's not like it's ugly, obviously it's well painted, but- like, it's tiny as fuck! It's this tiny ass portrait of this woman who either smiles or not, who gives a shit, and you can't even get close to it and there's always so many fucking people all crowded there to see the Mona fucking Lisa, I was so mad!” Taehyung takes a breath “You wanna know a beautiful portrait by da Vinci? La belle ferronnière.”

And there he goes, Jungkook has a kink for french now.

“That portrait is haunting.” Taehyung continues “She just- fucking stares at something behind you, so intensely. She saw something, something that she craves and you're just there, looking at this woman who's watching something you will never know nor have.” Taehyung pauses “That's a good portrait. And it's in the Louvre, too, but everyone is too worried about Mona Lisa and her stupid eyes that follow you when you move around.”

Jungkook blinks “Well, goddamn, didn't mean to piss you off, I was just asking.”

Taehyung snorts “No, sorry, I get passionate easily. A lot of people told me I get too intense.”

Jungkook shakes his head “You do, but it's fine. It's cool, actually, to be passionate about shit.”

Taehyung cocks his head to the side “You aren't?”

“What?”

“Passionate about things?”

Jungkook glances at Taehyung. Kim Taehyung who's been in France for three years, hates the Mona Lisa and had a dick size competition with Zico and, suddenly, he feels quite small.

“I'm passionate about Overwatch.”

“Shit, same!” Taehyung exclaims loudly “Fucking same, bro.”

“Don't bro me.”

“But bro-”

“No.”

“Listen, bro, you're right bro, you ain't just bro to me.”

“Taehy-”

“You're fam, bro.”

Jungkook snorts, choking on a lungful of smoke and he starts coughing, his eyes stinging with tears and lungs screaming.

“Shit.” he croaks out, Taehyung literally dying, laughing so bad he has to hold his stomach.

“Oh my God, don't die!” he says as he starts patting his back “Don't die on me fam, I want to take it up a notch, I want you to be more than fam! I want you to be bae, you can't die on me!”

“Fucking- stop!” Jungkook wheezes, rubbing at his wet eyes. He's blaming weed and alcohol entirely for this “I hate you.”

Taehyung clicks his tongue “Aw, don't be like that. Will you forgive me if I tell you I have a flask of vodka hidden in my pants?”

Jungkook straightens up “You have what and where?”

Taehyung holds up a finger then, from the back pocket of his really loose pants, gets a flask. Jungkook stares at it.

“You are a magician.”







“So!” Taehyung giggles to himself, the flask held loosely in his hand “There I am, brie cheese on my tiddies.”

Jungkook chokes on laughter, wiping tears away from his eyes, holding himself up with his hand on the wall.

“When this guy comes to me and, in French, he asks me if I'm making moves on his girl. Now, I didn't know French, I had just moved there, so I stare at this dude, who's clearly pissed off, but I was so drunk! So I just stared at him and I went,” Taehyung chuckles “Oui, monsieur.”

“Oh my God, I can't fucking breathe.”

“I got punched so fucking hard. I passed out, my poor Korean ass all over the dance floor and no one helped me!” Taehyung scoffs “The staff actually picked me up at dawn just because they had to clean!”

Taehyung takes another gulp from the flask, hisses, then he passes it to Jungkook “Your turn.”

Jungkook presses his lips together “Okay, so, this was last year. Jimin wanted to go clubbing but Yoongi was in Daegu for a family thing. So he calls me and he tells me to please, keep a fucking eye on Jimin, don't let him drink too much. We go to this club, we're having fun, dancing and stuff.” Jungkook drinks some more “We go to the bar to get a beer and this girl starts chatting me up. She was pretty and I wanted to get laid, you know the drill.”

“I sure do.”

“I swear to Guh-God.” Jungkook hiccups “I was distracted for three fucking minutes, next thing I know Jimin is gone and I'm freaking out. I start looking for him everywhere, I mean it! I went to the ladies toilets, for fuck's sake, they almost chopped my dick off!”

Taehyung slaps at his thigh, his laugh almost silent from how hard it is, booze making everything too funny.

“I finally find him with this dude sucking at his neck and Jimin basically passed out 'cause he was blackout drunk.”

“Shit.”

“I saw red, you know? 'Cause no one lays a fucking finger on Jimin, no one. So I push this dude off him, try to get Jimin to wake up. And out of nowhere, this asshole punches me in the stomach so hard, I almost puked right there. But at this point it was a matter of pride, so I fight back. And it was one of those actually dangerous fights, too many punches too well made, I was bleeding like our lord and savior Jesus Christ on the cross.”

“That's morbid but it does give me an idea.”

“Security got us out, I take Jimin home, everything ends well.” Jungkook gulps down more vodka “Three days later Yoongi is back, Jimin crying so bad 'cause he felt like shit but Yoongi just kind of wanted to find this dude and cut his balls off and feed them to his mother or something.”

“Your metaphors are spot on when you're drunk.”

“Then Yoongi comes to me, looks at my fucked up face.” Jungkook giggles “He puts a hand on my shoulder, squeezes it and he says Jungkook. You just became a man in my eyes. Here, take my wallet and buy yourself something nice.

Taehyung blinks “What did you buy?”

Jungkook grins “The most expensive fucking headphones I found.”

“Now, this is a good story.” Taehyung starts walking back to one of the tables that the staff has all piled up in the back, moving to sit on it. Jungkook swears his heart almost stop beating.

“No!” he shouts, his hand grabbing Taehyung's wrist and yanking him back.

“Woah, the fuck?!”

“There's a used condom there.”

Taehyung twists his head around, staring at the condom and he gags “Oh my God, I almost sat on that.”

“I saved your pants.”

Taehyung is really, really, close to him now, Jungkook can feel his breath fanning on his cheek.

“You did.” Taehyung turns really serious “You just became a man in my eyes.”

“Fuck off.” Jungkook lets go of Taehyung's wrist, already kind of missing the feeling of his skin under his fingers “Oh my God, I can't believe I haven't asked this yet?”

“What?” Taehyung takes a pack of cigarettes out of his pocket, grabs two and lights them both up at the same time, then he passes one to Jungkook.

“Well,” Jungkook takes a drag of smoke “This has been haunting me since forever, I need to know. What do escargots taste like?”

“Oh,” Taehyung shrugs as he breathes out a cloud of smoke “I don't know.”

“What do you mean you don't know?”

“Never ate them.” Taehyung frowns “Why are you looking at me like that?”

Jungkook closes his mouth, that has been hanging open for a few seconds now, and clears his voice “I'm gonna give you a few seconds to think about it.”

Taehyung squints his eyes, actually thinking, he licks his lips, smokes, then his eyes go the size of the moon “Oh my God, I lived in France for three years and never tasted escargot.”

Jungkook nods “There you go.”

“Shit!” Taehyung scoffs “I'm booking a ticket right now, for the both of us, we're gonna eat those goddamn snails.”

“What, you're bringing me as well?”

“Damn right I am, you're the one who gave me an identity crisis, take responsibility.”

Jungkook laughs, Taehyung smiling and leaning back on the wall behind him, keeping his eyes on Jungkook for a few seconds before he looks up at the night sky, smoking lazily.

Jungkook just now realizes that he's been out here with Taehyung for probably at least two hours, just talking about stupid shit and- well, it felt nice. It felt like something and that's something that he's missed. Feeling like this, like he's living a little. With someone.

Jungkook clenches his jaw and focuses on the cigarette between his fingers, he flicks it and a blob of ash falls down on the dirty ground, next to a stain he doesn't really want to identify.

“Shit.” Taehyung giggles, Jungkook looks at him “I'm so drunk.”

Jungkook chuckles “Yeah, same.” another remix of another old song of Drake starts “The music in this place is shit.”

Taehyung hums, he throws the cigarette on the ground and steps on it with the heel of his shoes, they look like some sort of slippers with fur “It is. Wanna go inside and dance?”

“To bad music?”

“It's fun to dance to bad music. Besides, we might find Yoongi and Jimin making out there and that's always disturbing but oddly arousing.”

“Ain't nothing arousing about Yoongi testing Jimin's lung capacity.”

“Don't kinkshame me.” Taehyung sighs “You know what, actually, let's stay here. I like it here.”

“Okay.” Jungkook looks at the sky, too, since looking at Taehyung too much with his mind buzzing with alcohol isn't the smartest idea.

He doesn't like the sky in Seoul. Not in the night, at least. Back in Busan, if he went to the beach, he could see stars. Here, the lights of Seoul erase them completely, leaving the sky in a weird purple color and a few stray clouds.

“We get distracted by lampposts.”

Jungkook looks back at Taehyung and frowns “What?”

“It's something this dude told me in France.” Taehyung says “He was a painter, met him in a bar, we went painting together sometimes when we had free time and once we did it during the night. We were at the Traversée de Paris, which is, like, the part of the Seine that is in Paris, on Pont Neuf, painting the river. And, well, he's always been a really pretentious dick, but he says this: we look up in the night sky, we don't see stars and we get distracted by lampposts. We always do that in life, we need to start focusing on the stars.” Taehyung rolls his eyes “So fucking pretentious, but he is kinda right. You were looking at the sky and seemed annoyed, like him.”

Jungkook frowns “Are we gonna start going philosophical now?”

“I mean, we're high and drunk.”

“A fair argument.”

“What is the dichotomy between good and evil?”

Jungkook smiles “Ain't that from Pirates of the Caribbean?”

“Ah, an intellectual like me!” Taehyung grins “That saga deserved better than the shitty sequels it got.”

“I know!” Jungkook exclaims, suddenly really into this conversation “It was supposed to end with the third one, it was a fucking trilogy, but no! No, let's make one more and we put Penelope Cruz in it, doing the only thing she can do lately.”

“A Spanish accent.” Taehyung finishes for him, shaking his head “Has she ever done a movie where she doesn't have a Spanish accent? 'Cause she did in the past.”

“Wait, aren't we being kinda racist? I mean, she's Spanish.”

“Don't we get a green card for being Asian?”

“How would that work?”

“White people snatch asian roles all the time, just look at Scarlet Johanson. We get to bitch about whatever the fuck we want.”

“Did you know Abrams will make a remake of Your Name?”

Taehyung's features harden “No he fucking won't.”

“He fucking will.”

“Why do white people have to ruin everything? Why?! Hollywood couldn't get their filthy paws off the purest most wholesome movie, no, they have to taint that as well!” Taehyung scoffs “First Death Note, now Your Name. Next thing you know they're gonna take Inuyasha and set it in Detroit or some shit.”

“Zac Efron playing Inuyasha.”

“Nah, Zac wouldn't do us dirty like that. We're all in this together, me, you and Zefron.”

“Weren't we supposed to be philosophical?”

“You mean this ain't deep enough for you? Didn't know I was dealing with Nietzsche here.”

“I can't believe you managed to pronounce that name right whilst drunk.”

“I'm a legend. My dick has been side by side with Zico's, how could you doubt me?”

“I see the errors of my way.”

Taehyung rubs at his neck, the loose shirt he's wearing revealing his collarbones, Jungkook's drunken mind making a quick note of it “You know, it's- I don't wanna sound rude or nosy but you're not like I was expecting you.”

“No?”

“No. Jimin told me something, he told me to be extra nice to you 'cause lately you were feeling down or some shit?” Taehyung pauses “I don't know, man. I was expecting you to be moody as fuck, but you're chill.”

“I'm not down, that's not-” Jungkook heaves a sigh “I don't know, maybe I am. I don't know.”

“What do you know? Come on, talk to me, I'm the new friend who offered you free weed, you can tell me what you want 'cause I don't know you enough to judge you. Also, I'm drunk.”

Jungkook knows Taehyung is saying this to make him feel a little better, to lighten up the mood and make him feel more at ease. But Jungkook already feels at ease. Taehyung looks like the kind of person who truly wouldn't judge you.

“It's stupid. I don't really know myself, but- fuck, okay, I mean- Yoongi and Jimin have been together since fucking forever and I never had a problem with it. But then Namjoon and Hoseok got together, too. Just a few weeks ago and I-” Jungkook pauses “I guess I just kinda realized-”

“How lonely you are?”

Taehyung keeps his gaze steady on Jungkook, waiting for him to reply, a small smile on his face that tells him that Taehyung knows. He knows what Jungkook means because he's probably feeling the same way.

Empathy is a strange thing.

“Yeah.” Jungkook finally admits “Yeah, something like that.”

Taehyung nods and steps forward “Loneliness is a bitch. She fucks you up, you can't let her take over.”

Jungkook follows Taehyung's movements, slow and careful “Did you let her take over?”

Taehyung is closer “We don't know each other that well for me to dump all of my shit on you, you don't want that.”

“Didn't I just do the same?”

“Your shit smells like jasmine compared to mine, don't even cross me on that.”

When Taehyung stops he's barely a few inches away from Jungkook, their chests almost touching, Taehyung's fingers grazing his own.

“What are you doing?”

Taehyung doesn't say anything for a while, he just looks at him with his stupidly pretty eyes, gaze fucking intense because, Jungkook guesses, Taehyung must be like that, easily passionate and intense like he's living life balanced on a very thin rope. Jungkook swallows, his eyes setting once again on that gold powder on his cheekbones, on the slope of his nose and on the mole he has there, down to his lips, the gloss disappeared after the cigarettes and alcohol.

“Hey.” Taehyung whispers “Want us to feel a bit less lonely for a while?”





Navigating between a sea of sweaty bodies when you have your heart racing in your chest and arousal slowly making it's way to your head isn't easy but, somehow, they make it. Taehyung spots the toilets and grabs his wrist, pulling him away from the crowd and opening the door to the toilets, who smell really fucking bad but he decides he really doesn't give a shit. Jungkook is good at drunk sex, he adapts easily.

Taehyung drags him to the last stall, the larger one, pulls him inside and slams the door shut, locking it, he turns around and pushes him against the wall and, before Jungkook even knows what's going on, he has Taehyung's lips and tongue on his neck and even this shitty toilets are really fine.

He feels a sigh leaving his mouth as Taehyung's tongue darts out, tasting his skin, lips open and teeth grazing. Jungkook finally has his hand in Taehyung's hair, fingers carding through soft hair, his thigh slots easily between Taehyung's legs and the other starts rutting against it shamelessly.

“You have lube?” Jungkook asks, Taehyung scoffs on his neck and looks up.

“Do I have lube? What, you think I'm some sort of amateur?” Taehyung gets back on his neck “Left back pocket.”

Jungkook gets his hand inside said pocket and, shit, Taehyung's ass is way thicker than it looks in those stupid pants, he finds a small bottle of lube and what feels like a condom, so he gets both, throwing his head back once he feels Taehyung biting lightly at the column of his throat.

Taehyung straightens up, still grinding on Jungkook's thigh, hardening at the friction and he looks at Jungkook, noses brushing together as he lets out small breathy sounds that have Jungkook's hands itching to just touch and make him scream and moan. Taehyung's eyes fall down to Jungkook's mouth, he licks his lips and Jungkook gets the message, quickly pressing his lips on Taehyung's, the elder sighing and wrapping his arms around his neck, body flush against his.

Taehyung opens his mouth, his tongue licking at Jungkook's bottom lip, he tastes of weed and vodka, bitter with smoke. It doesn't last long, Taehyung pushes himself off Jungkook and starts undoing his jeans.

“As much as I'd like to have a long make-out session, this toilet smells of death.” he says, unzipping Jungkook's fly and palming his cock through his briefs, Jungkook moans at the sudden touch and Taehyung's eyes darken “Fuck, you sound good. Can't wait to have this inside my ass.”

“You speak like a goddamn sailor.”

“I could get nastier.” Taehyung grabs his own pants by the waistband and pulls them down, they pool at his feet and he turns, showing his back to Jungkook “Come on, cowboy, fuck me up.”

Jungkook has to literally refrain himself from fucking sighing at the sight of Taehyung's ass 'cause, damn, that is a beautiful ass. He could wax poetics about that ass, but not now. Maybe not ever, yeah. He uncaps the small bottle and squeezes some liquid out, warming it between his fingers, puts the bottle in the pocket of his jeans and pulls down Taehyung's briefs. He starts prodding at Taehyung's entrance and then inserts one finger, he frowns at the little resistance he finds, his finger quickly inside up to the knuckle.

“Did you fucking prep yourself?”

“No.” Taehyung replies, a little breathless “Fucked myself on a dildo this morning, though.”

“Shit.” Jungkook feels his dick twitch in his briefs. He adds another finger, his hands almost shaking, drunk mind making him dizzy, Taehyung clenches around his fingers with a deep sigh, parting his legs more, as much as the pants pooled around his ankles let him.

Jungkook has to thank Taehyung's fashion sense, because everything he wears tonight is loose, so the shirt falls off his shoulder, exposing more skin. Jungkook can't help but lean down and suck at the skin, licking it, salty with sweat, Taehyung smells of some expensive perfume he thinks he can faintly recognize.

Taehyung hums, lips pressed tight and eyes lidded, he pushes his ass back, fucking himself on Jungkook's fingers. Jungkook decides to ignore how hard he is right now, even though it's fucking painful, just because he's drunk and when he's drunk his stamina hits an all-time low. He has a feeling that with Taehyung his stamina might not even exist. Instead, he keeps sucking on the hollow of Taehyung's neck, biting lightly when Taehyung groans, his drunk mind loving the way Taehyung's body feels against his.

“Add another.” Taehyung says, his voice impossibly deep, that alone has Jungkook moan on his neck. He still pushes another finger inside, Taehyung gasping out a moan and stilling for a moment before he's back at pushing his ass back on Jungkook's hand.

“We gotta make this quick.” Jungkook manages to say, pulling away from Taehyung's neck.

“Want your cock so fucking bad.”

Jungkook almost chokes on his spit, Taehyung twisting his head around to look at him, eyes dark and wet, cheeks flushed.

“I want you to fuck me, come on.” to make a point, Taehyung rolls his hips “Wanna get fucked.”

Fuck Kim Taehyung and the filth that leaves his mouth, Jungkook is not going to survive this. He keeps thrusting his fingers inside Taehyung's ass as he lifts the condom to his lips and rips open the package with his teeth.

“Did you just open it with your fucking mouth?”

“My hands are kinda busy.”

“That's so fuh-fucking dangerous.” Taehyung gasps softly when Jungkook crooks his fingers “Shit, hurry.”

Jungkook manages to pull down his briefs enough to take his cock out and he's embarrassingly hard, he's gonna hate himself tomorrow. He rolls the condom on his erection, gives it a few tugs, hissing at the sudden stimulation, then he takes out his fingers and lines himself up with Taehyung, his hands on the elder's hips.

“Go hard.” Taehyung says when the head of Jungkook's cock brushes on his entrance “Make it fast and make it hurt.”

Shit. Shit, why is it so easy for Taehyung to be so fucking enticing and filthy? Still, if that's what Taehyung wants then Jungkook will give him just that.

He pushes his dick in Taehyung's ass, unable to keep his moan to himself when heat and tightness envelop him, Taehyung clenching around him and grabbing his wrist, squeezing it as he keeps himself upright with his other hand against the wall of the stall.

When Jungkook bottoms out Taehyung shudders, arching and whimpering between gritted teeth “Fuck, you're big.”

“You okay?”

“Yeah.” Taehyung swallows and pushes back, slowly “Yeah, fuck me.”

Jungkook pulls back and then pushes back in, slamming his hips against Taehyung's ass and he fucks him just like he wanted, hard and fast.

Jungkook has never been the biggest fan of quickies in club's toilets but, fuck, there's something filthy and sinful in the way Taehyung just takes it, in the way he muffles his moans against his fist, pushing his hips back to meet Jungkook's thrusts.

“Fuck.” Jungkook moans, eyes closing as he gets lost in the buzzing under his skin, the shocks of pleasure that wrack through his body “Fuck, Taehyung.”

“Say my name again.” Taehyung manages with a voice so wrecked Jungkook groans, the sound of skin hitting skin filling the room.

Taehyung.” Jungkook presses himself more against the other, his hand moving on Taehyung's stomach then down, grabbing his cock and stroking him fast, Taehyung cries out, presses his forehead against the wall, tightens around him.

But then, a door opens and there's loud music snaking inside the toilets, Jungkook stops moving and Taehyung stills completely. The door closes, music muffled once more, there's the sound of steps.

Jungkook curses mentally, his body screaming at him to keep moving, chasing that pleasure that had his insides twisting, but he doesn't dare to even breathe. There's a sigh from outside the stall, then the sound of the faucet opening and water spilling in the sink. That's when Taehyung slams his hips back.

Jungkook gasps and almost lets out a moan that would have been way too fucking loud, but Taehyung keeps moving his hips, fucking himself on his cock, tighter than before.

Jungkook's fingers are deep in the flesh of Taehyung's hips as he gets the message. He leans down on Taehyung's ear, bites at his earlobe and feels the elder shiver. Jungkook thrusts back inside, as hard as before, regaining his pace, Taehyung whimpers and Jungkook's hand flies to his mouth, pressing against it to keep Taehyung from making too much noise.

He has no idea if the man just outside the door can hear the sound of their skin hitting or Taehyung's heavy and ragged breathing but he doesn't care, he keeps fucking him just like he'd been asked to, groaning (maybe too loudly) against the shell of Taehyung's ear.

The man outside closes the faucet, there's a silence that is defeaning in the room and Jungkook fucks into him deeper, Taehyung makes a noise deep from his chest and cums in Jungkook's fist, shuddering and breathing hard through his nose, tightening around his cock.

The man's steps falter, then they get quicker as he leaves the toilets. Jungkook lets his hand fall down, Taehyung gasps.

“Jungkook-”

“He totally fucking heard us.” Jungkook murmurs, still keeping his pace fast, chasing his own orgasm, so fucking close as Taehyung whimpers brokenly, basically pushed flush against the wall.

“He heard us.” Taehyung says, a slow slur in his words “He heard you fucking me hard-”

Shit.”

“Heard me cuh-cumming on your cock 'cause you- ah -'cause you fucked me so good.”

Jungkook presses his mouth on Taehyung's neck when he cums, to silence his moan and what scarily sounds like Taehyung's name, spilling inside the condom, his legs shaking.

Jungkook breathes through his nose and out of his mouth, almost like he's back in high school during fucking P.E., then he starts pulling out.

“Holy shit.” Taehyung whispers, then a low chuckle “Seriously. Holy shit.”

Jungkook snorts, he takes off the condom and throws it in the toilet, not really giving a shit about anything right now “'s that a compliment?”

“It is.” Taehyung starts pulling his briefs and pants up, Jungkook doing the same with his own clothes “I've been horny all night so thanks.”

“You're welcome. I guess.” Jungkook sighs and opens the door, moving to the sinks and immediately opening the water and cleaning his hands.

Taehyung moves to the sink next to his and starts splashing water on his face and on his neck, he gives himself a look in the mirror and frowns, then he ruffles his hair for a while before he hums satisfied.

Jungkook drinks some water, closes the faucet and breathes in deeply. That's when it all settles down. He looks at Taehyung's reflection and finds him staring right back at him, with the same look in his eyes.

“Shit, what did we just do?” Taehyung whispers.

“What the fuck were we thinking?”

“Oh, fuck, we're Jimin's best friends.”

“We literally don't know each other.”

Taehyung sighs “Okay, let's- well, it happened so there's not much we can do. Like, I'm still kinda drunk.”

“And we're high.” Jungkook nods “Okay, we're gonna blame it on that if it ever comes up?”

“Yes.” Taehyung says “But it won't come up.”

“It won't.”

“Hey, shit happens!”

“It does.”

“Also, we can't blame ourselves for being healthy young men, right?”

“Right!” Not right, not right at all “Should we... should we get back to the others?”

Taehyung nods, giving him a small smile and he walks to the door, Jungkook follows him.

He winces at the sudden loud music, bass too heavy in his ribcage, but they venture in the sea of bodies once more, trying to locate their friends. A hand closes around Jungkook's wrist and he turns around, finding Yoongi with a very drunk Jimin wrapped around him.

“Shit, where the fuck were you two?” Yoongi shouts to be heard over the music.

“Sorry, we were out smoking and lost track of time.” Jungkook shouts back, Taehyung leaning on his shoulder to hear what they're saying.

“Well, it's four fucking in the morning and Jimin is black-out drunk, so we're going home.” Yoongi looks at Taehyung “You're sleeping at Jimin tonight, right?”

“Yeah.” Taehyung replies.

“Okay, let's go then, I'm driving Kook back as well.”







Jimin is fast asleep on the passenger seat, tucked under Yoongi's leather jacket, the elder driving quietly with the window rolled down, his elbow resting on it and a cigarette between his fingers.

Jungkook is sitting in the backseat with Taehyung, both of them keeping a discreet distance between each other, Taehyung looks like he's about to fall asleep.

“Namjoon says he hates the club.” Yoongi suddenly says, voice low as to not wake Jimin up “Next time we'll go somewhere else.”

“The music is bad.” Taehyung murmurs, a cheek pressed against the car window.

“It sure fucking is.” Yoongi grumbles, he takes a sharp drag of smoke “Drinks are good, though. You wanna come sleep at Jimin's place with us?”

Jungkook frowns “Uh?”

“I'm talking to you. Like, you and Tae can share the sofa bed.”

Jungkook sees Taehyung squirming on the seat “Nah, just drop me at my place, I need my fucking bed.”

“Sure, kid.”





When they reach his flat, Taehyung is asleep.

“Well, I'll see you around.” Yoongi says “Jimin was talking about grabbing lunch this Monday?”

“Sure.” Jungkook opens the door and steps out “Thanks for the ride, hyung.”

“No problem, go drink some water, you look like a mess.” Yoongi says, giving him a small smile and then focusing back on the steering wheel.

Jungkook is about to close the door when Taehyung speaks.

“See you 'round, Kook.” he murmurs, eyes still closed.

“Yeah.” Jungkook says “See you.”










Jungkook has never really liked his flat much. Not because it's a bad place, on the contrary, his flat is huge. His parents are good people and good people with money, who never let him miss anything, who always gave him what he needed without spoiling him, always so caring and supporting. So when Jungkook had told them he wanted to study in Seoul, the first thing his mother did was finding a really nice flat in a really nice part of the city near the university Jungkook chose. She pays rent for him. Jungkook kind of hates it and maybe he's even a bit ashamed of himself for being so dependent on his mother's money, but college sucks him dry and he honestly doesn't have the time or energy to start a shitty job in a Starbucks or something. He knows this is better, this is what students fucking beg for.

He didn't have much of a problem with this before. Just lately. With all that is going on with his head, this adds as well. Jungkook doesn't really know how to deal with it so he doesn't.



Sometimes, in the middle of lectures, dance practice, trying to keep his social life alive, he thinks of Taehyung. He had hoped that maybe he'd been so drunk that he'd forget about what happened in that shitty club, but no. No, he remembers everything. He remembers it in full high definition, he swears that if he focuses hard enough he can still feel Taehyung's skin and how warm it was under his fingers, if he closes his eyes he can hear him moaning. Which isn't the best thing, honestly, because since he can remember so clearly he can also dream about it. And his dreams are honestly taking precious hours of sleep away from him.

That doesn't mean anything, though. Yeah, he had a quickie with Jimin's platonic soulmate barely hours after they met, so what? That's all there was and all there ever will be. Not that he wouldn't do it again, that's the scary part, he absolutely would do it again. But he's also smart enough to tell himself that no, he won't. That next time he'll meet Taehyung, which might be very soon since apparently Taehyung is almost done with moving to his new place, both Tae and he will act like nothing happened, they will joke around, bitch about Hollywood ruining anime and that’s it. Being friends with Taehyung doesn't sound bad. If half of the things Jimin told him about are true then having Taehyung as a friend sounds like a fucking blessing, he'll take it. He stopped thinking with his dick a long time ago, he's perfectly able to keep nasty thoughts about Taehyung and his stupidly beautiful face to himself without making a fool of himself.





Jungkook is trying to finish this stupid essay that he's been postponing since forever when the doorbell rings. Jungkook groans, knowing already that it's probably going to be the woman who lives upstairs asking him if he's seen her cat because that goddamn feline had a pending for always sneaking out of the owner's house. Living in a condo is nice and all, except for neighbors who need favors. He stands up from where he's been sitting on the carpet and walks to the door, opening it in one quick motion.

But Kim fucking Taehyung is standing there, staring at him with large surprised eyes and his lips parted.

“Taehyung?”

“Holy shit, hi.” Taehyung blinks “I was not expecting this.”

“Yeah, me neither.” Jungkook frowns “I- what are you doing here?”

Taehyung breathes out a laughter “I just moved here. Next door.”

No. No, this is not happening. Fuck this, his life isn't a cheesy drama nor a badly written Chanbaek fanfiction, he's better than that.

But this is, in fact, happening.

And, for whatever reason, Taehyung is wearing a black silk robe and probably nothing else. But he has his hair tied in a cute bun with a goddamn Pikachu hair band.

“You did?” Jungkook clears his voice “When?”

“Literally moved the last box inside two hours ago. Oh!” Taehyung smiles “Then the balcony next to mine must be yours!”

“Ah, yeah, I think so.”

“That's cool! It's cool, we're neighbors!”

“Yeah.” Jungkook can't help but smile along “Now we can bitch about white people even more!”

“Wow, is this heaven?”

“Why did you come here, though, you needed something?”

“Ah!” Taehyung claps his hands once “I needed sugar. Do you have sugar? I don't have sugar but I ain't dragging my lazy ass to the store.”

“Sure, I have some. You know what, come in, I'll make you some coffee.”

Jungkook steps aside and Taehyung all but hops inside, looking around with curious eyes and a relaxed smile on his face “Our flats are literally the same but I have less Iron Man posters.”

Jungkook grimaces, sending a look at the framed movie posters literally stolen from the Cinema hanged on the walls “Yeah, I'm kind of a fan.”

“You got the hots for Tony Stark.”

“Don't judge me.”

“I won't! Unless-” he turns around, regarding Jungkook seriously “Stony or Stucky?”

Jungkook scoffs “Stony, obviously.”

“A fellow intellectual, I see.” Taehyung follows Jungkook to the kitchen and sits on one of the stools close to the kitchen island, tapping his fingers on it “Your kitchen is literally like mine, too.”

“Pretty sure all flats in the condo are identical.” Jungkook says as he fills the coffee machine with water “That's a thing architects do, right? Designing the inside of the flats all the same, takes less time.”

“I like this place, it's quiet. And the flats are big.” a pause “That's kinda why I'm so surprised you live here, you know, considering you're a student.”

Jungkook hums.

“Sorry, was that rude?”

“What? Oh, no.” Jungkook waves a hand at him “My parents help me with rent, they wanted me to study in a comfortable place.”

He expects some sort of sarcastic remark about him being still “mama's boy” or something. Instead, Taehyung says “Oh, that's nice! My parents weren't that supportive when I moved to France.”

The coffee machine starts spilling coffee in the glass kettle, so Jungkook gets two mugs from the cupboard and fills them with the liquid “How did you pay for rent in France?”

“I had the money from the contest I won, that helped me for a while, I hurried my first commissions so I could get paid quickly, I managed just fine.” Taehyung smiles when Jungkook gives him his cup of coffee “Thanks.”

“Sugar's in that jar.” Jungkook says, pointing at the little glass jar, sitting on the island next to a bowl of fruit he should probably eat before it starts rotting “Contest? Ah, yeah, that's how you became famous, right?”

“Well, famous is a big word.” Taehyung puts two teaspoons of sugar in his coffee and starts stirring it. “I just got lucky, that art contest wasn't even that big. It was a miracle that my work was noticed by senior artists. And anyway, I'm more famous in Europe than I am in Korea.”

Jungkook hums, sipping his coffee “But you still came back.”

“I sure did.” Taehyung looks at the cup between his hands “I did.”

Maybe this is a touchy subject and Jungkook should drop it. He looks at the way the robe falls on Taehyung's, loose on his chest, collarbones exposed and he quickly looks back up.

“About the club.”

Taehyung looks at him, pressing his lips together “I have a plan about it.”

“Do you?”

“Let's forget it happened?” Taehyung then worries his bottom lip “It's not like I regret it, I don't. I mean, you gave me the dicking of a lifetime.”

Jungkook almost chokes on his coffee.

“But we were drunk and high and shit happens when you're drunk and high. So maybe that shouldn't happen anymore.”

“No, you're right.” Jungkook nods “It wasn't a smart idea, but mixing weed and vodka isn't either, so-”

“Yeah.” Taehyung chuckles “But maybe we could be friends? I wanna be your friend, you ship stony and hate Hollywood, I feel like we're bonded.”

“Those are good basis to build a stable friendship on, I agree.”

“Besides, we're literally neighbors.”

“You live next door, we can't escape this dreadful fate.”

“Destiny brought us together, who are we to say no to that?” Taehyung then turns serious “By the way, let me apologize from the start 'cause I don't know how thick the walls are but I work mostly at night, so there might be music or just me yelling 'cause I hate whatever it is I'm doing.”

“It's cool, I mostly study at night as well.” Jungkook shrugs “The other neighbors are gonna be the problem.”

“Do the other neighbors ship Stony?”

“I highly doubt that.”

“Then I don't care.”

Jungkook snorts “You're not gonna last long here with that mindset. Most of the people who live here are old people who have really large pensions, they're gonna make your life a living hell if you're too loud.”

Taehyung shrugs, a crooked smile on his face and what looks like amusement in his eyes “I like it when the neighbors hate me, it makes it even funnier to ruin their peaceful retirement.” Taehyung downs the rest of his coffee “I gotta go now, though. I still have to unpack and I'm pretty sure I have around thirty boxes that are just brushes and canvases.”

“You need a hand?”

“Nah, don't worry. I'm like a fucking librarian, I have a Dewey Decimal system invented by me, just for art, and I'm fucking picky about it.” Taehyung grins and gets off the stool “Thanks for the coffee.”

“Didn't you need sugar?”

“Oh, shit, yeah.”

“Wait.” Jungkook walks back to the cupboard and gets a new package of sugar, he gives it to Taehyung “Here.”

“Thanks, man, you're saving my lazy ass.”

Jungkook walks Taehyung back to the entrance, opening the door for him and the artist steps outside.

“I'll see you around, Kook.” Taehyung says, with a smile and his stupidly pretty grey hair tied in that ridiculous hair band.

“Yeah.” Jungkook nods “See you around.”







Dance practices leave him sweaty and drained, in need of a shower and hours of sleep he can't get. Jimin still drags him to coffee shops to have studying sessions together that, in the end, always turn into the two of them chatting and gossiping about anything.

“How's living next to Tae going?” Jimin asks him as he digs his fork in a slice of carrot cake.

“Apart from having If You and the rest of Big Bang's discography blasting at two am, everything is fine.”

Honestly, it could have been worst. Taehyung might have liked shitty music, at least he has good taste.

Jungkook keeps meeting Taehyung when he comes back from university and Taehyung is just leaving, going to buy some art supply that for some reason he is missing, other times he says he just feels like he really needs to take a walk. But other than that, they don't particularly spend time together. Jungkook knows it's weird, considering they decided to be friends, but at the same time he likes it this way. They fucked, hard and fast and hungry, in a toilet stall. Maybe they need some time before they try to act like it really never happened. Jungkook is fine with it.

“Since now Taehyung lives next to you, you might even meet Jin-hyung.”

“Who?” Jungkook asks, munching on his muffin.

“Kim Seokjin.”

The muffin falls from his hand “The actor? The actual actor?”

Jimin grins smugly “Yep, Tae and I have known him for ages, he used to be our upperclassman back in high school before he moved to Seoul. We still keep in touch, he and I.”

“And you never introduced me?!”

“Jin-hyung is busy as fuck.” Jimin smirks “But he always has time for Tae.”

Jungkook frowns “What do you mean?”

“He and Tae are- kinda lovers? Not really, more like-” Jimin squints his eyes “Let's just say they fuck sometimes. They did in high school, they kept doing it when Jin went to France for a while.” Jimin shrugs “But nothing romantic, they just fuck sometimes.”

“Mh.” Jungkook sniffs and gets back at focusing on his muffin “I can't believe I live next to someone who had sex with Kim Seokjin.”

Jimin snorts and then he starts choking around his bite of carrot cake.







It's a really lazy Saturday when Jungkook decides to take the trash out and, as he leaves the flat, Taehyung is doing the same, too.

“Howdy, neighbor!” Taehyung exclaims, a huge grin on his face “What are you doing on this fine morning?”

“Taking out the trash. And, in fact, I met you.”

“Wow, that is cold-blooded.” Taehyung cocks his head to the side “You busy?”

“Not really.”

“Wanna come with me? I have to buy some supplies, I could use the company.”

Jungkook thinks about it for merely a second “Yeah, sure.”





Taehyung has been looking at different samples of watercolors for more than an hour, eyes focused on the paint, barely speaking. He's dressed in a more casual way than usual; Jungkook has seen him wear loose pants and robes for the most part of their “friendship”, but today he's actually wearing jeans and- well, he has nice legs, that's all Jungkook has to say. He's also wearing glasses, frame large and perched on the tip of his nose, they look vintage but they probably aren't.

Jungkook strolls in the art store, looking at brushes he doesn't know how to use, stroking a canvas as he walks past it, then he notices a section of the store dedicated to art books so he goes there.

He recognizes some of the artworks on the covers, some of the names of the painters, but his attention sets on a photography book. He picks it up and recognizes the picture on the cover.

“Sugimoto?”

Jungkook spins around, Taehyung looking at the book in his hand.

“You like his photos?” he asks, smiling at Jungkook.

“Yeah.” Jungkook replies.

“You're interested in photography?”

Jungkook scrunches his nose “Not really interested, I just- I mean, I like looking at nice photos.”

“You like black and white.”

“That I do like.” Jungkook puts the book back on its shelf “I actually like grainy photos, especially if in black and white. The aesthetic is lit, fire emojis.”

“You're such a meme.” Taehyung giggles “I'm done here, we can go back if you want to.”

“Yeah, sure.”

On the walk back home, Taehyung keeps rustling inside the paper bag with the supplies he bought, repeating over and over again that he feels like he missed something. His glasses start slipping down his nose so Jungkook pulls them up, Taehyung flashes him a smile.

“Thanks.”

“I like your glasses.”

“They're Gucci, my boy.”

“You're such an expensive ass.”

“My ass itself is Gucci.” Taehyung pauses “You would know, you had your cock in it.”

Jungkook trips on his own feet and almost falls flat on his face, Taehyung laughing so hard he has to stop walking, wiping tears off his face.



 




 

Jungkook focuses on studying but he can't ignore it.

There's something going on with his head and he doesn't know how to deal with it. If at first it was only loneliness, now it's something else. At least, he can attribute his loneliness to him being single, that maybe he only craves some sort of affection, a relationship, anything of the sort.

But now it's not just that. It's been biting at his chest, this feeling, he doesn't know how to name it and he doesn't want to. But it's there. It keeps him awake at night and keeps him isolated in his house even when Jimin asks him to go out.

With Jimin this feeling is even stronger, that's why he tries to avoid him. Which is shitty, but Jungkook is all about self-preservation. Still, he has dance practice with Jimin, half of his lectures are shared with Jimin, but it's during their dancing that it gets a bit harder.

He gives this feeling a name during one of their practices, after they sweat through the layer of clothes and Jungkook sits down to catch a breather but Jimin keeps dancing, keeps pushing himself, keeps doing this with a look of total bliss.

Jimin knows what he wants and he's confident he'll make it. Jimin wanted to be admitted to this course and he has, he wanted to move to Seoul and he did, he wanted to dance and he is, he wants to enter in that dance studio he's been eyeing for ages and, surely, he will. Jimin is sure he will, he's training for it, has been for months, he knows he's gonna make it. And then, after that, after college even, Jimin will keep dancing because that's all he's ever wanted and when Park Jimin wants something he gets it. But above all this, Jimin knows that he will keep dancing and he will do all of this with Yoongi by his side.

That's when Jungkook finds a name for whatever it is he's feeling apart from loneliness.

Helplessness.

That's what he's feeling and that's what he is.

He's helpless.





He comes home that evening and he gets under the shower immediately with tears stinging his eyes and some sort of boiling rage under his skin, itching and hurting.

What does he want? Jimin knows what he wants, so why doesn't Jungkook? After all, he loves dancing, right? It's fun.

Maybe that's where the problem is, it's fun for him but it's something else for Jimin, something deeper. Something that keeps him going.

But Jungkook doesn't have that, he doesn't have a passion or a fire that keeps him moving, holding out a hand to reach a goal, he doesn't have anything like this. And he doesn't have anyone to reach a goal with.

He's helpless to it all. Life. Friendships. Relationships. He's alone and he's helpless and that's fucking him up.



He's been on the balcony for what feels like ages, the coffee in his mug untouched and now cold, staring at the road beneath him, a few cars driving past, in the distance the lights of Gangnam, still awake, never asleep.

“Jungkook?”

Jungkook turns around and he finds Taehyung closer than he expected, standing on his side of the balcony, the only thing dividing them is the iron railing that cuts in half the balcony they share, it barely reaches their hips.

“Hi.” Jungkook forces a smile “You up at this hour?”

“I'm working.” Taehyung lights up a cigarette, blowing out smoke, Jungkook notices blue paint staining his hands and neck.

“How's that going?”

Taehyung licks his lips, staring at the scenery “Like shit.”

“Can't be that bad.”

“No, it is.” Taehyung bites back, his voice thin and eyes hard “I fucking hate it, nothing's coming the way I want it and my deadline is so close I can feel it biting my ass.”

Jungkook blinks and, slowly, he takes in the state in which Taehyung is. His robe is hanging loose on his shoulders, the fabric stained as well and- and he just looks really tired. Jaw clenched hard, his arms crossed over his chest and his fingers drumming incessantly on his elbow, index finger tapping nervously on the cigarette. And there's something heavy in his eyes, something that scares Jungkook.

“Taehyung, are you okay?”

Taehyung looks at him “You don't look too good either.”

“I-”

“What's wrong, Kook?”

Jungkook can't help but feel like Taehyung doesn't really care about how he's feeling. That's mean, he probably does, but it's not that the reason why he's asking. He's just trying to change the subject. And Jungkook is not an asshole, so he doesn't push it.

“Just-” he shrugs “Nothing.”

Taehyung arches an eyebrow, even his grey hair has some paint dried on it “Bullshit.”

Jungkook sighs and gets a bit closer to the railing between him and Taehyung, he grips it “I don't know.” he lies “I don't know, just a bad day?”

“That sounds more like a question.” a pause “Hey, seriously, what's wrong?”

Now he does sound concerned. Jungkook frowns at this, he sees Taehyung just staring at his hand on the railing and only now Jungkook notices he's been squeezing it so hard his knuckles turned white.

Taehyung blows out smoke and then throws the cigarette off the balcony, he puts his hand on top of Jungkook's and looks at him in the eyes “What's wrong, Jungkook?”

So much shit is wrong, everything is wrong, everything is too much but Jungkook doesn't say it. Not all of it, at least.

Instead, he says “I'm so fucking lonely.”

Taehyung's gaze changes, it turns sad, it turns sympathetic. There's a silent Yeah, me too in the air. And Taehyung's hand is warm.

Empathy is a weird thing.

They stay quiet for a while, Jungkook looking at Taehyung's hand on top of his, blue paint on golden skin.

“Jungkook.”

It's the way he says it that has Jungkook's heart almost stop in his chest. He's heard it before, his name spoken like that, like he wants.

When he looks at Taehyung, the artist is gazing at him with his eyes lidded.

“Do you want me to make you feel less lonely?”



As much as Jungkook knows that he should say no, as much as he knows he should ignore the way Taehyung's eyes just fall on his lips and stay there, as much as he knows all of this- well, he doesn't say no.

What Jungkook does instead is jumping over the railing so he can get on Taehyung's side of the balcony, the elder telling him that that was fucking dangerous and if he ever does that again he will actually kick his ass, then Taehyung is kissing him and dragging him inside his flat.

Jungkook keeps chasing Taehyung's mouth as they move, the kiss sloppy and maybe too hard and fast, teeth hitting and too much tongue, but he likes it anyway as he grabs the hems of Taehyung's robe, the other's hands in his Jungkook's hair, tugging slightly.

Jungkook trips on something, almost loses his balance, he breaks the kiss and looks down to find a white canvas thrown on the floor.

“Don't mind, don't mind.” Taehyung says, already trying to kiss him again.

“Was that a fucking Haikyuu reference?” Jungkook asks.

“Shut the fuck up.” Taehyung chuckles, his eyes squinting a little, looking all kinds of endearing and soft and warm, then he brings Jungkook in for another kiss and all that he has in mind is how easily it is to fall into tempo with Taehyung.

Jungkook closes his eyes as Taehyung kisses him, guiding him to what he guesses will be the bedroom, he can smell stale cigarettes, smoke that still lingers, tea that turned cold somewhere and acrylic paint.

Taehyung tugs at his shirt, groaning in his mouth, they almost hit a wall when they finally reach what must be Taehyung's bedroom. The back of Jungkook's knees hit the mattress and he sits on it, Taehyung quickly climbing up on his lap, still kissing him and holding on his shirt as if he wants to just rip it off.

“Shit, are-” Jungkook licks his lips “Are you wearing anything under that robe or-”

“No.” Taehyung says, his eyes still very much fixed on Jungkook's lips “I hate pants. Hate them even more when I paint, that shit blocks my muse.”

“Your muse likes you naked?”

“Most people do.” Taehyung smirks “Talking about naked, get these clothes off you.”

Jungkook very quickly obeys, he honestly doesn't even care anymore, he has Taehyung's body so close to his again, they're not drunk, there's no shitty music and they're not in a dirty toilet stall, he's gonna take advantage of this and enjoy it.

As soon as his shirt is off, Taehyung is already sucking at his neck, Jungkook guesses he must like that and he's not complaining, not with the feeling of Taehyung's lips and tongue on his skin.

“Want me to make you feel good?” Taehyung asks against the column of his throat, Jungkook sighs “Want me to take care of you?”

“Fuck, yeah.”

Taehyung leaves another trail of kisses along his neck before he gets off Jungkook's lap and gets on the mattress, crawling to the bedside drawer “Get naked, pretty thing.”

Jungkook scoffs, undoing his belt “Pretty thing?”

“You're pretty.” Taehyung says, he opens the first drawer “Mad hot, too.”

Jungkook quickly shrugs off his pants and underwear, throwing them both on the floor, he moves up the mattress and lays his head on the pillows, sighing. Those are soft pillows, also probably the only soft things in the room by now.

Taehyung turns around, a bottle of lube in his hand, looks at Jungkook and sighs “Oh, God, of course you have abs.”

“The atmosphere was kind of way more intimate before, you're ruining it.”

“Sorry for appreciating the good things life gives me.” Taehyung moves so that he can kneel between Jungkook's legs “Now then, part them a bit more, pretty thing.”

Jungkook does and, just maybe, he likes being called that. By Taehyung. Who looks like gold thrown on a canvas. Maybe.

Taehyung squeezes lube on his fingers, rubs them together to warm it up, his eyes on Jungkook “Touch yourself, this is about you feeling good.”

“Or is it about you wanting to see me touch myself?” Jungkook asks, he still starts giving his dick lazy strokes.

“Give and take, that's what sex is.” Taehyung thumbs at Jungkook's hole, the younger sighing at the feeling, Taehyung prodding at his entrance slowly “That's it, relax.”

Jungkook closes his eyes and focuses on this, on having a taste of what Taehyung is again, after way too long. He focuses on this so that he doesn't think of the shit that fills his head and, somehow, it kind of works. This numbs the mess in his head. Makes it a little less noisy. Just a background buzzing, white noise.

Taehyung slowly pushes a finger inside, Jungkook gasps, the muscles of his legs flexing involuntarily. Taehyung's free hand goes to his hip, stroking the skin, sometimes squeezing the flesh as he works his finger inside and out of Jungkook's ass.

“Get that fucking robe off, wanna see you.”

Taehyung grins, he undoes the ribbon of the belt that keeps the robe closed “You're really greedy, I'm already taking care of you.”

“Give and take.”

“Fair enough.” Taehyung lets the robe fall open.

“Shit.” Jungkook moans, his dick twitching in his hand.

He didn't have time nor the opportunity to look at Taehyung when they first fucked, the lights too low and their clothes still on, but now- now Taehyung is right there and he can see that he has gold everywhere with sprays of blue paint, his chest toned but his tummy still soft, which is really too fucking cute for his mental state right now.

Taehyung adds another finger, Jungkook arches slightly, the stretch burning before the uneasiness disappears, leaving just the feeling of Taehyung's fingers working him open, prodding at his walls, grazing at his prostate once he finds it.

“You sound good, babe.” Taehyung says, Jungkook has his eyes closed but it doesn't take much to imagine the satisfied smirk on Taehyung's face.

Jungkook maybe gets a bit lost in this, he loses track of time, Taehyung teasing him with his fingers, adding a third one and pressing just in the right spot at any thrust, murmuring filth in that deep voice of him until Jungkook has to squeeze the base of his cock so that he doesn't come right there, moaning a bit too loud and saying stuff he might regret later.

Fuck. Taehyung, shit, just-”

“Okay, okay.” Taehyung pulls his fingers out, Jungkook clenches around nothing, he hears Taehyung probably unwrapping a condom.

“When did you get a condom?”

“I always have a condom in the pocket of anything I'm wearing.”

Jungkook opens his eyes, frowning “Wait, really?”

Taehyung shrugs, he rolls the condom out on his erection “You never know when you might get a dicking or give a dicking. Especially when your neighbor is so pretty, right?”

“Right.” Jungkook chuckles, Taehyung sending him an amused look before he taps on his knee “On all fours, come on.”

Jungkook rolls around and he gets on his knees, lowering himself on his elbows when he feels Taehyung's hand caressing from the small of his back down to his neck.

“You have really smooth skin.” Taehyung says, Jungkook feels him as he lines up behind him “Might wanna paint it one day.”

“You speak too fucking much.”

Taehyung giggles and presses a quick kiss between his shoulders “Don't worry, hyung is gonna make you feel good.”

Jungkook makes a quick note of yet another kink but before he can really start considering it, Taehyung is pushing inside, Jungkook groans as he feels the head of Taehyung's cock stretching his rim.

God-” Taehyung chokes on the word, his hands on Jungkook's hips, fingers digging in “You're tight.”

Jungkook keeps quiet, pressing his fist to his mouth to muffle the noises, Taehyung sliding inside deeper until he bottoms out, the elder's breathing heavy and fast on his neck, his body flush against Jungkook's back.

“You good?”

“Yeah.” Jungkook manages, his skin heating up “Good.”

When Taehyung starts moving, slow and shallow thrusts, Jungkook moans in the pillow and pushes his ass back. There's a method to what Taehyung does, Jungkook thinks. There's a method, otherwise Jungkook can't explain how he's losing his fucking mind so fucking fast.

Taehyung doesn't fuck him hard like he did at the club, doesn't pull his hair, doesn't bite his neck. He's careful, he's tender, he presses kisses on Jungkook's shoulders as he keeps his thrusts slow and deep, moaning in his ear, telling him how good he's doing, how fucking lush he sounds. Jungkook loves that, fucking revels in it. Ignores how much of a writhing mess Taehyung has him reduced to so easily, doesn't care, he feels so good he could cry. Taehyung's hands are so warm, his palms feel rough with dry paint on his skin.

“Taehyung, fuck, I-”

“Yeah, say my name again.” Taehyung groans, his arm snaking around his stomach and down to Jungkook's cock, fist loose around it as he strokes him in time with every push of his cock.

Jungkook moans, Taehyung's hand closing around the head of his dick with every stroke “Taehyung.

“Shit, it sounds so good when you say it.” Taehyung fucking whines in his ear, his hips snapping up, pressing right against his prostate, Jungkook presses his face on the pillow, he's leaking on the sheets, the sounds that fill the air wet and dirty.

But it's between all of this, between Taehyung's fingers carding through his damp hair, between Taehyung's lips hot on his skin and heat pooling low in his abdomen that Jungkook realizes something: Taehyung isn't really doing this for him.

He's not taking care of him because Jungkook is feeling lonely. Taehyung is doing it for himself. Because he's lonely, too. Isn't he? He's tired and nervous and lonely so he's doing this to feel less lonely. Just a bit. Just as long as this lasts. And Jungkook- he can't be mad at him. Because he's doing the exact same thing.

Give and take.

Jungkook cums in Taehyung's fist, shuddering and seeing white behind his eyelids, Taehyung fucking into him faster and harder, chasing his own release, whispering filth in his ear, of how good he takes it, how fucking pretty he looks until he cums as well, spilling in the condom, collapsing on top of Jungkook.

They stay still for a few moments, breathless and numb and too high off pleasure until Jungkook groans and rolls over, Taehyung dropping on the mattress beside him with a quiet chuckle.

“Too heavy.” Jungkook whispers.

“All those muscles and you can't even keep me up?”

“My muscles are basically useless right now. I can't feel my legs.” he pauses “Fuck it, I can't feel my fingertips.”

Taehyung snorts, Jungkook manages to open his eyes just in time to find Taehyung looking at him with a small smile, eyes warm and skin flushed. He quickly looks away.

“Getting up is gonna be a challenge.”

Taehyung groans, he takes the condom off, ties it, throws it on the floor.

“That's gross as fuck.”

“I'm gross as fuck.” Taehyung retorts “Don't get up, sleep here.”

Jungkook blinks “You sure?”

“First of all, I'm not the kind of guy who kicks you out after having my dick in your ass.” Taehyung stirs, humming “Secondly, sleeping alone is overrated.”

Jungkook grins “'s that so?”

“Besides, I like to hug things when I sleep. Especially people.”

“You're just a selfish asshole, that's why you're keeping me here. To be your little spoon.”

“Guilty as charged, handcuff me now.”

“That's kinky.”

“If you're into that, I do have handcuffs.”

“Maybe not tonight.” Jungkook sighs “Still, I need a shower.”

Taehyung hums “Bathroom is outside, on the right.”

“I know, our flats have the same design.”

“Don't get all sassy.” Taehyung chuckles “I'll give you some of my clothes and change the sheets, I ain't sleeping in wet spots.”





After a shower and in Taehyung's clothes that smell of something nice, something like lavender, Jungkook feels so sleepy he could just drop on the floor and call it a day. But he drags himself to Taehyung's bed and decides to drop there instead, sighing as he makes himself comfortable on the mattress.

Taehyung quickly climbs on the bed too and literally wraps himself around Jungkook, one leg over his, arms around his waist, lips brushing against his forehead.

“I'm gonna choke if we sleep like this.”

“Then choke, I'm comfortable.” Taehyung heaves a sigh “So comfortable.”

Jungkook is full of bullshit and too much pride, so he doesn't say that he actually feels comfortable as well. Warm. Safe. Not alone. Lots of things, actually.

“What had you so upset, Kook?”

“Told you.”

“You weren't just lonely, you looked on the verge of having a breakdown.”

Jungkook presses his face on Taehyung's chest, the t-shirt he's wearing smells more of acrylic paint than lavender but it feels nice anyway “Life is tough.”

“Yeah.” Taehyung says after a pause “You're right.”

“I don't know why I feel like this.”

Taehyung caresses his hair “Sometimes there's no reason, sometimes there is but you'd rather not acknowledge it.”

“Talking from experience?”

Taehyung doesn't answer him. Jungkook understands why.

Empathy.

“That book-” Taehyung yawns “That book you were looking at when we went to the art store.”

“Sugimoto?”

“Yeah.”

“What about it?”

“Do you really like photography?”

Jungkook closes his eyes “I used to really love it. I liked taking pictures, too. Then I stopped, but when I was younger, like back in high school, I used to think about becoming a photographer.”

“Then why didn't you?”

“I don't know.” Jungkook really doesn't “I don't know, Tae.”

“Okay.” Taehyung yawns again “I'm so fucking sleepy.”

“Then stop talking and go to sleep.”

“You're so fucking bossy.”

There's quiet for a while, the room dark, just a small lamp on, but Taehyung put a lilac silk napkin over it and so it doesn't disturb them.

“Taehyung.”

“Mmh?”

“You were upset as well.”

Silence.

“Tae?”

“Go to sleep, Kook.” he says, he's not angry, the way he says it it's actually awfully soft.

That's when a small thought crosses Jungkook's mind, right when he's about to fall asleep, with Taehyung's warmth all around him.

That Jungkook has just started feeling lonely, still has to get used to it and doesn't want to.

But Taehyung has been feeling lonely for way more and he's already used to it. And maybe he doesn't know how to stop.



 

Chapter Text

And my arms are tough

but they can be bent

They can be bent

And I wanna fight

But I can't contend











It feels a lot like doing something you're used to, being close to Taehyung. Even though it's actually new. For someone who's good at understanding things and analyzing them, Jungkook is at a loss when it comes to this feeling. To the sheer familiarity in which Taehyung and he move around each other, he finds comfort in it. He guesses it must be empathy, once again. Or knowing, in some way, that Taehyung has it worse. He's been lonely for longer, Jungkook has just started, around Taehyung he can feel less of a messed up individual. Yeah, it's a selfish thought, but it's all about survival. Life is. You take what the universe gives you to feel better, be it sex or the fact that, as Taehyung said, Jungkook's shit smells of jasmine compared to the artist's. That doesn't mean Jungkook doesn't feel bad about it.

More than bad, he's concerned.

Having sex with Taehyung probably didn't help the case at all. People will fill your head with tales of “sex doesn't change anything, sex isn't that important, sex is just sex”, but Jungkook knows better. Even when casual, you fuck someone, you connect for a moment. You lay completely bare and exposed with another person who's doing just the same, how can you not feel connected? You do it more than once, the connection becomes intimacy.

At least, that's what Jungkook thinks.

Then again, after that last night, things go back to the way they were but a little better. It's been weeks now and they haven't fucked again. Slept together? Yes. That's not Jungkook's fault, Taehyung's pillows are comfortable and they're both lonely, it happens. But no sex.

Although, he wants to. Shit, he wants to so bad.

And Taehyung does, too. Jungkook is not entirely dumb, not yet at least.

But they keep their distance under that aspect, don't do anything to make any situation sexual, cure their loneliness temporarily with cuddles and long nights talking about everything and nothing on their balconies, drinking coffee and smoking weed and tobacco.



“I'm guessing they must taste a lot of garlic.”

Jungkook frowns, taps on the cigarette, a blob of ash falls off the balcony, Jungkook puts his elbows on the railing “What?”

“Escargots.”

“You're still thinking about them?”

“Your fault.” Taehyung shrugs, looking at the screen of his phone, a cigarette between his lips as he leans with his back against the metal railing of his side of the balcony “But I'm looking at recipes and shit, they put a shitload of butter, garlic and basil in those snails, so I'm guessing they must taste like that a lot.”

Jungkook hums, breathes out smoke from his nostrils “Do you ever stop and think of why the fuck people came up with eating snails? They're not that tasty looking, so why did some french guy take one and say Yes, I shall eat this squishy, humid animal.”

Taehyung arches an eyebrow “Now I'm curious, let's see if there's an origin story to escargots.”

Taehyung taps something on the phone, waits for a page to load up, reads “Oh, okay. So apparently ancient Romans ate snails a lot.”

“Woah.”

“Yeah, I'm not even sure French people invented them? They eat them a lot in Portugal, too. I'm confused.” Taehyung locks his phone and takes a drag “Whatever. We're going to eat them sooner or later, there must be a decent French restaurant in Seoul.”

“It's gonna be expensive as fuck.”

“And I basically shit money out of my ass, we'll be fine.”



Taehyung, Jungkook finds out, doesn't sleep a lot. Or, well, he does. Just in fucked up moments.

During the night he mostly works, sleeps in the early afternoon or late evening.

Taehyung doesn't mind having Jungkook in his flat when he works, he just tells him to sit somewhere and to make himself comfortable, that there's coffee in the kitchen and junk food in the fridge.





And Taehyung has a cat. A beautiful cat, may he add, Taehyung tells him it's a Ragdoll, which Jungkook thinks is a fucked up name.

“Her name is Emilie. Like Klint's life companion and one of his muses.” Taehyung told him when Jungkook almost had a heart attack the first time he found the cat staring at him as he was taking a piss “She's a bit shy.” he scratches under the cat's chin, the animal purring happily “But she's lovely.”

“What kinda breed is even a Ragdoll?”

“It's because they're literally so affectionate that they go limp in your arms, like a ragdoll.” Taehyung takes Emilie in his arms, the cat rubbing her nose on Taehyung's chest and he walks to Jungkook “Here, hold her.”

Jungkook carefully takes Emilie in his arms and can't help but smile at her. She's awfully pretty, soft white and grey fur, bright blue eyes that stare at him. Jungkook tries to imitate Taehyung, he starts to scratch under her chin but Emilie's eyes squint, she hisses viciously and starts squirming in Jungkook's lap. As he tries to put her down, Emilie gets her claws out and digs them in his hand.

Jungkook yells, more in surprise than pain, lets go of her and stares at the back of his hand, where Emilie's claws have ripped the skin in two straight lines.

Jungkook looks at Emilie, who's hiding behind Taehyung's legs “Why would you do such a thing?”

“Okay.” Taehyung nods “She hates you.”





Jungkook likes those nights where he sits on one of Taehyung's huge fluffy pillows, Emilie dozing off on the couch, Jungkook drinking warm coffee with lofi Hip-hop playing from his speakers. Playlists, compilations from Youtube, even actual mixtapes, Taehyung has them all.

“Lofi makes everything feel a little brighter and better.” Taehyung had told him as he was mixing colors “Makes everything feel possible.”

Jungkook agrees.

Since he agrees, Jungkook doesn't really understand the reason why Taehyung looks so miserable when he paints.

He didn't really think about it when he first noticed it because Taehyung was working on the commission that had him so upset that night, weeks ago. A huge canvas with angry drags of metallic paints, Taehyung putting so much force in every stroke of the brush Jungkook thought he wanted to rip the canvas open. Jungkook didn't understand that painting, but he never really understood modern art.

That day, he attributed this anger and sadness to Taehyung's feelings about the commission, about not liking the way it was coming out, he even said something about the client being a piece of shit.

But now he's not painting for a commission, just because he wants to. And it's with watercolors, soft strokes, wet paper napkins being gently dabbed on the canvas where Taehyung needs them, he's painting what looks like a room, with sunlight creeping in between the white curtains of a window. And yet, Taehyung paints with eyes that tell a story of heartbreak that Jungkook doesn't know.

“That's nice.” he tries.

“Yeah.” Taehyung replies, dips the brush in the glass of water, then dries it just a bit on another napkin “It's coming out nicely.”

“What's that room?”

“It was my study in Paris.”

Jungkook nods “It must have been a nice place.”

“Yeah.” Taehyung says, touches the little amount of black in his palette with the tip of his brush “It was.”

And Jungkook knows that the conversation is over.

 

 


 



Jungkook really isn't in the mood for a night out but here's the thing about Jimin, once he starts whining in the phone that he really wants to go clubbing with everyone and then transfers the same exact discussion on their Kakao group chat, you don't really have a choice.

So here he is now, sitting on Taehyung's bed, wearing a pair of jeans that look clean and feel clean and a crisp shirt that Taehyung gave to him.

“You can't always wear white oversized t-shirts, I get that you have an aesthetic going, but you just can't.” that's what he said.

Taehyung is in his bathroom, probably putting on makeup or more of that deadly golden powder on his cheekbones, just to fuck with Jungkook's mental health.

“I feel like Jimin is hiding something from us.” Taehyung says from the bathroom, Jungkook can barely hear him so with a sigh he gets off the mattress and walks to the other one.

He quickly gets inside the bathroom and sits on the edge of the bathtub, Taehyung smudging kohl under his eyes.

“Why would you say that?”

“I don't know, he was all mysterious and shit.” Taehyung grabs what looks like face powder, he opens the lid and, yep, it's that goddamn gold powder “He was all like Wow Tae, you really need to come, for real, you must come to this night out, it's gonna be so fun!

“That's not being mysterious, that's being terrible at being mysterious.” Jungkook clenches his jaw as Taehyung dips one of his brushes in the gold powder and then starts applying it not to his cheekbones but to his collarbones. And, once again, the dress shirt he's wearing is so loose, everything is just there on display, gold on golden skin, this is gonna be the death of him.

“What do you think he's hiding?”

“He and Yoongi are getting married.”

Taehyung scoffs “That wouldn't even be a surprise.” he puts the brush away, ruffles a bit his grey hair that he spent almost an hour to style, making them all wavy “How do I look?”

Jungkook sighs “Good.”

Taehyung hums then turns to Jungkook and frowns “Undo the first two buttons of the shirt.”

Jungkook does so even though it was Taehyung who, at first, buttoned his shirt all the way up.

“Much better.” Taehyung smiles “Let's go, brethren.”



Namjoon's car is one of those cars who still work out of the power of sheer trust. It's old as fuck, damaged as fuck, the engine must have seen more miles than any human has ever seen and it makes weird noises everytime Namjoon presses on the brakes. Still, it works, which is all kinds of convenient and weirdly exciting. They once had a road trip to Daegu in this car, it felt like they were going to be stranded in the middle of the highway at any given minute, the adrenaline was at its pike.

“You know, kid.” Namjoon suddenly says, voice loud to overcome the heavy hip hop blasting from the radio “You might wanna get a car of your own one day.”

“Why should I do that when I have you, hyung?” Jungkook replies, sitting on the backseats with Taehyung by his side.

“I can't always drive your ass around, neither does Yoongi.”

“Oh, leave him be.” Hoseok mutters “Knowing Jungkook, he'd be one of those drivers who race you at the streetlight.”

“Shit, that's the dream.” Jungkook chuckles “Taehyung doesn't have a car either, I don't see you two biting his ass.”

“We don't know him well enough.” Namjoon says.

“No, please, do bite my ass.” Taehyung grins, leaning a bit on Jungkook.

“Fine.” Hoseok throws a look at Taehyung through the rearview mirror “What's your excuse?”

“I have a license but I'm used to driving in France and there they drive on the right seat, it's so confusing.”

Silence for a few seconds, then Namjoon sighs.

“That's England.”

Taehyung nods “I was fucking with you. I hate driving. Also, climate change.”

“Jesus Christ.” Hoseok chuckles.

“Global warming will kill us all, I'd rather not contribute to it.”

“What a hero.” Jungkook says with emphasis “He’s admirable, isn't he?”

“I hate you both.” Namjoon mutters, burning a red light out of spite.





Jimin isn't being as discreet as he thinks he is. The moment they get to the club, a place that Namjoon says is actually good, they serve decent alcohol and play good music, trust me, I know the owner, Jimin grabs Taehyung's arm and giggles, already pushing him inside the club as they walk past the line of people waiting outside.

Jungkook frowns and he sends Yoongi a look, the elder just grinning and shrugging. Jungkook has a bad feeling about this.

Inside, the club is filled with people, hectic even though it's still early in the night, music good but incredibly loud, there is too much dry ice, the smell sickeningly sweet, with neon lights fading in the white fog.

Namjoon guides them to the upper floor, where the private booths are, as soon as they reach it Jungkook knows that he should always trust his bad feelings.

“Jin-hyung!” Taehyung exclaims, freeing himself from Jimin's grip and running towards a man that really looks like Kim Seokjin.

Jungkook's brain informs him that said man is, in fact, Kim fucking Seokjin.

Seokjin stands up from the little sofa he was sitting on and opens his arms, Taehyung basically jumping him, the older man laughing loudly. Jungkook knew Seokjin is beautiful, obviously, he's seen him on television and in magazines and billboards, but in person? The guy is stunning, his shoulders are broad and he's tall and Jungkook is in full fanboy mode.

“Take a picture.” Yoongi whispers in his ear, making Jungkook jump “You can add it to your jerk bank.”

“Real funny.” Jungkook mutters, eyeing the way Seokjin still hasn't let go of Taehyung, rubbing his back and basically talking to him with no distance whatsoever from their faces.

Finally, Taehyung distances himself from Jin and next thing he knows, Jimin is the one jumping the actor, burying his face in the man's neck.

“You okay with all that?” Jungkook asks Yoongi, who shrugs.

“It ain't him Seokjin fucks.” he replies, nodding in Taehyung's direction.

Jungkook rolls his eyes, then Jimin turns to them and waves at them to get closer.

“Jin-hyung, these are our friends!” he says, Jin smiles and bows a little.

“Ah, it's good to meet you all, Jimin has been pestering me about you all.” he says, his voice pleasant, he shakes Namjoon's hand, then Hoseok's.

“Oh my God.” Hoseok wheezes, staring at his hand “Oh my God, I touched Kim Seokjin.”

“Get a grip.” Namjoon mutters, but Jungkook still sees him sending quick looks at his hand.

“You must be Jungkook?” Jin says, Jungkook tries to remember what breathing even is “Jimin always talks to me about you.”

“It's me.” Jungkook shakes Jin's hand, he swears he's not panicking “It's good to meet you.”

“And now!” Taehyung yells “Shots!”





Here's the thing about Jungkook and alcohol: they have a nice relationship. Hell, the longest relationship Jungkook's ever had, he's ready to marry booze since it's been so kind to him this whole time. Jungkook also knows that the story about alcohol making everyone a lot more honest? Bullshit.

Alcohol doesn't change you, alcohol fucks you up enough to force words that you've been hiding under thick layers of issues and insecurities out of your mouth. When it's not words, then alcohol forces feelings.

So here's how it goes: Jungkook finds out that, after a few rounds of tequila, a glass of wine and more tequila (fuck Namjoon for giving him that wine, you never go steady, then down then up again) it isn't that hard to admit to himself that he's jealous of Taehyung.

There's this thing that just- the way Jin and Taehyung keep to each other, whispering things in their ears, chuckling quietly to themselves even though the music is so loud... that's not easy to watch. What's even harder to watch is the way they seem so at ease with each other, their hands lingering where they rest on the other's arm or knee, leaning in when the other speaks, fixing each other's clothes or hair, that is something that Jungkook knows can belong only to lovers. And he's not surprised, no, Jimin did tell him that Taehyung and Seokjin used to (and use to) fuck sometimes. But when Jimin told him all of that, Jungkook wasn't so neck deep in just the surface of Taehyung's shit and they didn't use to cuddle together, sleep in the same bed, basically sharing two apartments just for the sake of ignoring loneliness.

So Jungkook keeps quiet, steals glances at Jin and Taehyung, keeps sipping on his drink, getting dangerously close to really drunk again, he starts feeling a bit more lonely.

Which is bullshit. Seokjin isn't just a great actor but, apparently, an amazing person as well. He keeps cracking terrible puns, one after the other, that have people either groaning or laughing 'till they cry, he buys drinks for the group, chats amicably with all of them, even with him. Kim fucking Seokjin asks him of college, of what he wants to do in life, Jungkook making up shit on the spot because, as of now, Jungkook doesn't even want to think of the future, and he does all of this whilst smiling at him and actually listening. And for this, for being so goddamn perfect, Jungkook hates him a bit.



“Never have I ever-” Jimin squints his eyes, too sober for anyone's liking, a sober Jimin amidst a drunken mess of friends is a menace “Fucked in the public library of Uni so fucking loud that they had to close the library for two weeks.”

Namjoon sighs, Hoseok rolls his eyes, they both take the shot glasses from the table between the circle of people and gulps down the shots of vodka.

“I feel like that was aimed at us, specifically?” Hoseok says, he hiccups, Namjoon pats his knee.

Jungkook sends a look at Taehyung, who's sitting in front of him, Seokjin by his side, telling him something that has the artist smiling softly.

“Okay.” Yoongi presses his lips together “Never have I ever farted during sex.”

Silence for a while, a dubstep remix of an old Beyoncé's song playing loud in the club, Jimin grabs the glass and gulps down the alcohol, Namjoon starts laughing like a maniac.

“As soon as we're out of here, I'm breaking up with you.” Jimin says, Yoongi shrugs with a shit-eating grin.

Taehyung rests his hand on Seokjin's thigh, leans in to whisper something in his ear, Jungkook looks down.

“Never have I ever clogged someone else's toilet with my shit.” Hoseok says, Yoongi groans loudly.

“Fuck you, man.” he mutters as he downs another shot.

Seokjin's hand grazes Taehyung's fingers, the touch lingering, Taehyung smiles at him.

“Never have I ever fucked someone because I felt lonely.”

Silence falls. Jungkook takes a few seconds to realize that those words were pronounced by him. He looks up and finds Taehyung staring at him, his eyes wide and his lips slightly agape. No one speaks but, Jungkook knows it, everyone has a vague idea of what the fuck is going on.

Taehyung straightens his shoulders, grabs the glass and downs its content, then slams it back on the table. He grabs the bottle of vodka, fills the glass again, then he moves it to Jungkook.

“Fuck you.” he says, fucking bristling, eyes sharp “And drink up, bitch.”

Jungkook stays quiet as Taehyung gets up and walks past them, Jimin calls for him but Yoongi grabs his wrist and shakes his head.

Jungkook sighs “Shit.”

“Kook.” Namjoon tries, but Jungkook is already up on his feet and chasing off Taehyung, running down the stairs and making his way through the sea of bodies that are crowding near the entrance.

When he manages to get out of the club he sees Taehyung walking at a steady pace. Jungkook runs to him and he grabs his wrist, Taehyung turns around sharply and yanks his hand away.

“Tae, wait-”

“Go fuck yourself.”

“I'm sorry!”

“Are you?!” Taehyung scoffs and he crosses his arms “What the fuck was that about, uh?! Did I do something wrong?!”

“No, I-”

Taehyung shakes his head “You know what's funny? The fact that something like that came from you. As if you didn't jump on the possibility of fucking me so that you could forget how miserable you are!”

“That's not what I-”

“As if you're not just like me! That's fucking rich coming from you, coming from the guy who was sobbing on my dick because he couldn't bear to be left alone for a minute!”

Jungkook takes a step back, he swears he feels the words slap him on the face and, shit, it hurts.

But what hurts even more is Taehyung, who puts a hand over his mouth as soon as he stops talking, looking at him with eyes so full of apologies that Jungkook can't even begin to count them.

“I'm sorry.” Taehyung whispers, Jungkook barely hears him over the music coming from the club “Shit, I'm sorry.”

“It's-” Jungkook swallows “It's okay.”

Taehyung takes a deep breath and then steps forward, Jungkook doesn't back off but he wants to, that is until Taehyung holds his hand so, oh God, so softly, almost as if he's touching a wounded animal.

“Jungkook.” he says “What's wrong?”

And that's when Jungkook breaks. Because Taehyung doesn't ask just for the sake of it, he asks because he gets it. Because he knows what's going on.

Empathy.

“I- I don't know anymore.” Jungkook says, a lump already forming in his throat “I don't fucking know, I thought it was loneliness but it's not just that, it's something... something worst, something muh-meaner, something that really fucking hurts!”

“Kook.”

“It's just that everything I do feels so fucking pointless! It feels like I'm stuck in a goddamn box, the entire world keeps going whilst I'm just stuck! And- and I can't do anything about it, I'm helpless! I'm helpless because I'm stuck in a box and I'm stuh-stuck in that box alone and-”

He stops talking when he feels Taehyung's hands on his cheeks, thumbs smearing away tears he didn't even know he wept.

“Don't cry.” Taehyung murmurs, eyes red and his face twisted in what looks like pain “Don't cry, it's okay, I got you.”

Jungkook decides that, with alcohol ready as an excuse, he can curl on himself and cry on Taehyung's chest with the other holding him and stroking his neck. So he does just that, sobbing and probably getting snot on Taehyung's fine shirt, the elder whispering soothing words that Jungkook can't even hear, his hands warm and soft on his skin.

He's not sure for how long they stay like this, but at some point he stops sobbing and the tears dry, his chest feels a little less heavy so he slowly puts a discreet distance between Taehyung and him.

“You're good?” he asks, holds Jungkook's hand again, Jungkook nods “Okay. Okay, let's go home. We take a bus, night bus rides calm me, maybe they can help you, too.”

“Okay.” Jungkook replies, Taehyung starts walking in the direction of the bus stop, still holding Jungkook's hand and guiding him.





On the bus it's quiet except for the rumbling of the engine, the hiss of the suspenders and the low chatter of two girls sitting at the very far end.

Jungkook is sitting next to the window, eyes cast on the street, Taehyung sitting beside him and still holding his hand, rubbing circles on the skin with his thumbs, speaking endlessly with that deep voice of his, all kinds of nice and distracting.

“You should've seen Jimin and Yoongi in high school, man.” Taehyung says “Yoongi was on his last year when he noticed Jimin and he was fucking smitten in a second. Jimin thought he was hot as fuck but kinda scary, but then Yoongi started dropping gifts in Jimin's locker, it was adorable.”

“Yeah?” Jungkook asks, smiling a bit despise himself, the bus stops and the door opens, two men getting inside.

“Yeah, he even managed to stuff a whole teddy bear in it once, Jimin was so confused. And when they got together Yoongi became so protective and clingy in the cutest way possible, always a tsundere since the origins, Jimin shooting sunshine out of his ass every time Yoongi would kiss his cheek.”

Jungkook looks at the two men who just go on and finds them staring at them both, harsh glares and hushed quick words, disgusted grimaces twisting their mouths. Jungkook follows a bit more their gaze and understands that they're both looking at their intertwined fingers.

“On their first date, Yoongi took Jimin to a cat café. A fucking cat café. Jimin is fucking allergic to cats but he couldn't bring himself to tell Yoongi, so he endured it but the fur made his eyes water and Yoongi freaked out.” Taehyung chuckles, the men squint their eyes “He was so scared that Jimin was crying because of him, not because he was legit about to choke to death, he started apologizing for not being a good enough date, so lovely. And- wait.” Taehyung suddenly turns to the men, slumps in his seat, arches an eyebrow “Can I help you?”

Jungkook tenses up a little, Taehyung holds his hand harder.

“Excuse me?” one of the two men asks.

“You've been staring at us like we fucked your mothers in the ass, so I was wondering what the problem might be.”

The other man, who's a bit shorter and has a face that reminds Jungkook a lot of a wrinkly old lemon, steps up “You keep that shit in your house.”

“What shit?”

“That.”

“Holding hands?” Taehyung clicks his tongue “Yeah, I don't think so.”

The man scoffs “You fags are all that shameless?”

“You straights are all that shitty?”

Jungkook sees rage coloring the man's face, he starts walking to their seats and, honestly, Jungkook already had a really stressful night as it is, he doesn't need this.

“You get one step closer to him and I will bash your head against one of these seats.” Jungkook says, flat, looking at the man right in the eyes.

Here's what Jungkook knows about adult men who still live in the past, they love to talk but the moment someone actually threatens to get physical, they shit their pants. Especially if that someone is good inches taller and looks dead inside like Jungkook knows he is.

The man looks at him, swallows, mutters an insult under his breath and walks back to his friend, who is pretending to look at something on his phone. They get off at the next stop.

Taehyung sighs “I forgot about this.”

“This?”

“Korea being so homophobic still.” Taehyung makes himself comfortable on the seat and rests his head on Jungkook's shoulder “In France and, well, in Europe generally it's different. It's not like there is no homophobia there. Shit, there is, there's homophobia everywhere, there are shitty people in every corner, but it's different. You get caught at being a homophobic piece of shit, people will actually throw hands. I've seen old men stand up to people thirty years younger because of a disgusting comment on the subway, you know? There's homophobia there, too. But-” Taehyung shrugs “I wasn't afraid to hold someone's hand there.”

Jungkook doesn't say anything but he hums. All he knows right now is that, back in France, maybe in Paris, Taehyung had someone to hold hands with.







As soon as they're at Taehyung's apartment Jungkook is being basically thrown on the sofa and then submerged by blankets.

“I'll make you into a burrito.” Taehyung says as he starts tucking Jungkook under the blankets, making sure they're covering him completely “I'll be right back, I just wanna take this makeup off.”

“Okay.” Jungkook replies, he sighs once Taehyung is out of the living room and he slumps back in the sofa. He has to say, despite feeling just a little squeezed, being in a blanket burrito isn't that bad. He's really warm, that's for sure.

Jungkook sees Emilie walking in the room, eyes set on her pillow, she plops there and yawns, sending a disinterested look to Jungkook.

“Why do you hate me?” Jungkook whispers, the cat looks away.

Taehyung walks back inside, wearing some sweats and a simple black t-shirt, he walks to the library he has next to the tv and starts scanning through the shelves until he grabs what looks like a DVD box.

“We're watching The Heirs.” he says, Jungkook frowns.

“Excuse me?”

The Heirs. Lee Min Ho and Park Shin Hye?”

“Yeah, I know what The Heirs is, just- you have the DVDs?”

Taehyung scoffs, he turns on the tv and the DVD player “Damn right I do, this show is a masterpiece.”

“There are better dr-”

“This. Show. Is. A. Masterpiece.” Taehyung takes the first DVD from the set and puts it in the player, on the tv screen the menu with the list of episodes appear, Taehyung selects the View All option.

“Are we... are we about to do a The Heirs marathon?”

“Yep.” Taehyung happily hops on the sofa and scoots closer to Jungkook “The Heirs makes everything better.”

“Does it?”

“Of course it does. Park Shin Hye acts beautifully and Lee Min Ho can have a day off in my ass whenever he wants.”

“Jesus, Tae.” Jungkook chuckles, Taehyung grinning at him “I'm more of a Goblin kinda guy.”

“Oh, you're into the daddy type.”

“That's not why.”

“Next time we're watching that, just to cry a lot.”

“That's therapeutic.”

“It actually is.” Taehyung licks his lips as the first episode starts “One who wants to wear the crown, bears the crown.”

Jungkook sighs “Please, tell me you don't know every single line from this drama.”

“That would be a lie, and I don't lie.”



Here's the thing about watching The Heirs (The fucking Heirs, Jungkook still can't believe it) with Kim Taehyung: he will say all the lines. All of them. Making a damn good imitation of all the characters, by the way.

However, yesterday I met a woman. Her name was Cha Eun Sang. I'm curious about her. Probably, I like you?” Taehyung clears his throat “Probably not.” he says with a high pitched voice, eerily similar Cha Eun Sang's, then back to a deeper and richer tone “-Why not? -You're engaged. -Nevertheless.”

And, as he rewatches this goddamn show, Jungkook notices that Kim Tan (and every single male character) has a tendency to just kiss Cha Eun Sang without her consent. Which is slightly annoying. Especially considering that in the end she just kisses the fuck out of him anyways.



Hours later see Taehyung cuddled up against Jungkook under the blankets, eyes wide as he watches the tv, Jungkook feels really close to falling asleep.

I'm afraid that you might leave.” Taehyung recites by memory at the same time Cha Eun Sang speaks “I don't have a place to sleep. That's my excuse for now. You give me an excuse too. An excuse to be with me.”

“Taehyung, can you please shut up?”

-I like you. -That's your excuse? -I missed you. -Another excuse.” Taehyung clears his throat, clearly ready to change the sound of his voice again “I was dying. I will not smile. I will not have a good life. I will be the least happy person in the world. I will not love anyone. I will scoff at anyone talking about the 'one'. I said this to myself. So don't you dump me again, Cha Eun Sang. Fuck.” Taehyung nods to himself “Kim Tan, what a man.”

“He's annoying.”

“Fuck you.”

“She's annoying, too.”

“Your dick is annoying.”

“This drama is bad.”

Taehyung glares at him “You come into my house-”

“You dragged me to your house.”

“I will not have you disrespect a piece of modern art.”

Jungkook closes his eyes and rests his head on Taehyung's shoulder “Whatever, you keep doing your thing.”

“I want someone to tell me they'll let me pass any door I want as well.” he says, kind of pouting, kind of whining.

“I will hold the doors open for you.”

Taehyung stays quiet for a while “That's actually fucking sweet of you.”

“I know, Kim Tan who? I only know Jeon Jungkook.”

“Once a meme always a meme.”

Jungkook looks up at him “I met a man.”

Taehyung frowns “What?”

“His name was Kim Taehyung.”

“Oh my- Don't.” Taehyung snorts “Seriously.”

“I'm curious about him.” Jungkook arches an eyebrow “Maybe I like you?”

Taehyung presses his lips together “Probably not.”

“Why not?”

“You're a fuckboy.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes “Nevertheless, you hipster.”

“Look at you, swooning me with quotes from my favorite show.”

“I don't need quotes to swoon you.”

“'s that so?”

Jungkook hums and Taehyung looks at him for a few seconds before he takes the tv remote and shuts the tv off. Before Jungkook can ask him why he did that, there are soft lips on his.

Jungkook's hand finds it's way to Tehyung's hip, the elder humming against his lips, Jungkook opens his mouth, tilts his head, lets Taehyung move so that he can sit on his lap, the blankets falling off them. He missed this more than he likes to admit, he missed Taehyung's taste and the feeling of his body close to his.

Still, Jungkook pulls away, Taehyung chasing his lips for a moment before he frowns.

“What?”

“Are you-” Jungkook looks at where his hand rests on Taehyung's hip “Are you doing this to make me feel less lonely or to make you feel less lonely?”

Taehyung blinks “I'm doing it because I want to.”

Jungkook doesn't know if he believes him, but he knows he really wants to. So Jungkook wraps his arms around Taehyung's waist, pulling him flush against him and kisses him again. And maybe it's because he's feeling way too fucking emotional, maybe he craves a different kind of intimacy, but he kisses Taehyung slowly and deep, he plays with his bottom lip, Taehyung all but melting on top of him, tugging at his t-shirt.

Jungkook likes kissing but he knows that he could actually grow addicted to kissing Taehyung. So he keeps doing just that, getting intoxicated is a risk he's willing to take as long as he gets to have this, to hear the deep sounds that come deep from Taehyung's chest as he keeps shifting his hips, dragging his clothed hardening dick over Jungkook's.

When Taehyung pulls back his lips are shiny and red and swollen, he swallows “I'm too lazy to go get lube but also too horny to keep things like this.”

Yeah, Jungkook wholeheartedly agrees “Wanna ride my leg or something?”

“Is it Christmas already?” Taehyung lifts himself up and off Jungkook's lap and he starts taking off his sweats “You know what, I have a motto in life.”

“Which is?”

“Grinding is the way to a man's heart.” Taehyung grins “So take those jeans off.”

Jungkook is quick to obey, undoing the button and zipper of his jeans and shrugging them off along with his underwear, he turns to Taehyung and finds him already laying down on the couch, legs spread as he strokes himself, the shadow of a smile on his lips.

“You're a fucking menace.” Jungkook mutters.

“Eagerness turns me on, sue me.” Taehyung wets his lips “Come on, Kook, get here.”

As much as Jungkook likes to have the last word with Taehyung, he's too much of a horny mess to really care about his pride. What he does is grabbing Taehyung's thighs, palming the flesh, and pulling him forward against his legs and then he leans down and finally gets his lips on Taehyung's neck again.

He slides his hand under Taehyung's shirt just to feel more of his skin as Taehyung starts rocking his hips up, dragging his cock against Jungkook's and drawing a moan from him.

“Don't stop.” Taehyung says as he wraps his arms around Jungkook's neck “Mark me or something, I don't care.”

And if Taehyung asks, Jungkook can't say no, he really fucking can't. So he opens his mouth against the soft skin of Taehyung's neck, his tongue lapping the flesh, Taehyung hums and Jungkook starts sucking, teeth grazing the skin until he feels Taehyung shuddering and his cock twitching. He bites a bit harder, feels Taehyung's legs around his waist, pulling him down further and Jungkook grinds down harder, Taehyung's own hips rolling up.

Jungkook slides a hand between them and wraps a hand around both of their cocks, slick with precome, Taehyung chokes on a moan and arches in the touch.

“Fuck, yeah.” Taehyung says, his hands roaming over Jungkook's back “Good boy, like that.”

Fuck. That shouldn't be so hot.

Jungkook bites back a moan and strokes them faster, his hand closing around the head of Taehyung's dick just to feel him shudder and hear him whimper on his skin. Because Taehyung likes to play dirty but Jungkook really does like having the last word.

“Taehyung.” he whispers in the other's ear, low and slurred, Taehyung's cock twitches “Taehyung.”

Shit.” Taehyung rolls his hips up, fucks into Jungkook's fist.

Despite it all, Jungkook can't help but chuckle “Not that I don't find it hot, but why do you like it that much, mh?”

Taehyung twists his head a bit, eyes lidded “Huh?”

“You know-” Jungkook's hand squeezes on the upstroke, Taehyung's hips faltering, Jungkook loses track of his words “Me- me calling your name.”

Taehyung doesn't reply to him immediately, his eyes flick down to his lips, he bites on his lip as he moans after a particularly good drag of his hips “'Cause- Fuck, go harder. 'Cause if you call my name it means you're thinking of me only.”

Why is that hot, too?

“Yeah?” Jungkook swallows, heat pooling low in his abdomen, Taehyung's legs are shaking around his waist “That's fucking greedy, love.”

“Oh, shit.” Taehyung's eyes flutter close “Fuck, I like that, too.”

Well, shit, now Jungkook likes it as well then. But he's already feeling so close, his whole body sensitive to everything, his mind swimming in pleasure, so he strokes them faster, makes sure to dig his thumb in the slit of Taehyung's dick every time until he has the other writhing beneath him, his hands tugging at Jungkook's shirt.

Jungkook leans down and Taehyung immediately opens his mouth for him, the kiss frantic this time, not much finesse to it, almost painful and bruising in how hard it is, Taehyung biting on his lip as if he wants to draw blood, Jungkook stroking them both faster.

“Fuck, gonna cum.” Taehyung manages, still trying to kiss him.

Jungkook groans, so awfully close “Taehyung.” he murmurs on the other's lips, Taehyung moaning and closing his eyes “Taehyung.”

Taehyung's body shudders as he cums in Jungkook's fist, hips still moving, Jungkook finally lets go and moans brokenly what must be Taehyung's name once more, cumming over the elder's t-shirt.

Taehyung's legs fall from where they were hooked around Jungkook's waist and Jungkook finds out his arms are hurting, so he lowers himself on the couch, half of his body over Taehyung's, but the other doesn't seem bothered so Jungkook doesn't move.

Jungkook closes his eyes for what must have been a minute or something, he feels Taehyung's fingers playing with strands of his hair.

“Kook.”

“Mmh?”

“What are we doing?”

Jungkook freezes.

What are they doing? Fuck, that's a good question. They had an excuse at first, a fairly decent one. Defeat loneliness by fucking someone, not the first time someone does that. But tonight? Taehyung said it loud and clear, they did it 'cause they wanted to, not because they needed it.

So what are they doing?

“I'm not regretting this.” Taehyung adds, his hand still in Jungkook's hair “I really am not. But what are we doing?”

“We're doing what we want.”

“But what are we?”

“Us?”

“I mean- fuck it, I don't know.” Taehyung sighs, his breath breaking on Jungkook's forehead “I guess I'd like to give a name for whatever it is that is going on between us but at the same time I don't.”

Jungkook looks up, he finds Taehyung looking up at the ceiling.

“Why?”

Taehyung shrugs “Sometimes it's not a good idea to give a name to things.”

Jungkook thinks that, perhaps, Taehyung knows this because he used to hold someone's hand in Paris.

“You know,” Jungkook starts stroking Taehyung's neck with his knuckles “if you don't want to give this a name then we don't. We don't really need to, do we? As long as we don't know let's not name it.”

“We don't?”

“Nah. We just know that there's something.”

There's silence for a while.

“Okay.” Taehyung finally says, he relaxes “There's something.”

“Yeah.”

“You know what else there is?”

“What?”

“Your cum on my Gucci shirt.”

Jungkook groans “Oh my God, Taehyung.”

“And my cum on the shirt you're wearing, that is still mine and that is Valentino.”

“Why the fuck are you so goddamn expensive in everything you do?”

Taehyung just chuckles breathlessly, eyes closed and skin still flushed, hair damp against his forehead. Jungkook finds himself thinking that whatever it is this something that they have, it feels nice.



It's later when they're in bed, under the blankets and with Taehyung literally wrapped around him that Jungkook holds Tae's wrist, stroking the skin with his thumb. He heaves a sigh.

“What?” Taehyung asks, voice thick with sleep and words slurred.

“Just- You look frail.”

“Frail.”

“Yeah. Your wrist is thin as fuck. That's what fucks me up, you look frail and pretty like a goddamn doll but in reality you're a walking time bomb, ready to explode at any time and blow away everything that stands around you.”

Taehyung hums, nuzzles his nose in Jungkook's hair “I'm guessing you like that.”

“No.” Jungkook makes himself more comfortable in Tae's arms “No, I'm scared of it.”

“Of me?”

“Yeah.”

A pause, then “Good.”





Jungkook isn't expecting to wake up to the smell of breakfast in the air but, then again, Jungkook wasn't even expecting to fall in Taehyung's bed. Again. Then again, it is rare for Taehyung to prepare breakfast. Not because he's lazy or anything, but Tae rarely eats breakfast. Jungkook actually scolded him before for this, but what the artist lacks in breakfast, he makes up for it with all the shit he eats during the rest of the day.

Jungkook, still half asleep, manages to get his body off the empty bed and he goes to the kitchen, walking in two different walls and almost on Emilie's tail, the cat hisses at him and runs away. Great.

Once he reaches the kitchen he finds Taehyung perched on one of the stools, drinking some coffee and doodling something on a paper napkin with a pen.

“Hey.”

“Morning.” Taehyung doesn't even look up from the drawing “I made breakfast.”

“I can see that.”

On the kitchen island there's warm coffee, milk, some cereals and what looks like a Gaeran Toast but smells completely different.

“This is a European breakfast or something?” Jungkook asks, sitting on the stool opposite to Taehyung's.

“Something.” the other replies “Made you a French Toast.”

Jungkook frowns at the meal “It looks oily.”

“That's because it is. A fucking miracle.”

“No rice?”

“No.”

“Why?”

“Eating rice in the morning is fucking wrong.”

“For you, not for me. I like rice. And stew. And banchan.”

“Well, I never liked rice in the morning.”

“You don't even have breakfast, what are you on about?”

Taehyung scoffs, still focused on whatever it is he's drawing “I actually spend time giving you food and this is how you fucking thank me. If you ain't eating it I'll just throw it away, you ungrateful bitch.”

“Wow, okay.” Jungkook grabs the plate that has the toast on “I'll eat.”

“Good.”

Jungkook eyes the toast one last moment before he dives into it, too hungry to really care or put up a fight. It is oily, tastes more of butter than anything, but he still finds himself craving for a second bite.

“French Toast ain't even French, you know?”

“No?”

“Ancient Romans made it first. Again, always the ancient Romans.” Taehyung takes a sip of his coffee “In France they call this Pain Perdu, 'cause at first they used stale bread to make it.”

“They eat French Toast for breakfast in France?”

“Nah, they eat like- bread rolls, toast with jam and stuff.”

“Then why did you make me a French Toast?”

“I don't have bread rolls nor jam and I don't know how to make croissants, do I look like a pâtissier to you?”

“Wow, you're in a good mood today.”

“I actually was, you're ruining it.” Taehyung squints at the drawing then holds it up with a grin that goes from ear to ear “I drew you!”

Jungkook can't help but giggle at the doodle on the napkin. It's hurried but still very detailed, a drawing of Jungkook asleep, with drool on his chin and everything.

“That's cute.”

“Here, take it. I even signed it and all, you try and sell this at the right auction and you'll make good money.”

“I won't sell it.” he replies, taking the napkin and folding it.

“No?”

“No, I'll use it to blow my nose or something.”

“Fuck you.”

“Or I'll wipe my ass with it after taking a shit.”

“You're eating, how can you talk about poop? You're disgusting.”

Jungkook arches an eyebrow “Poop? What are you, ten?”

“I'm well mannered, you beast.” Taehyung shakes his head “Any plans for today?”

Jungkook shrugs, munching on the French Toast “Probably gonna see Jimin for lunch. Wanna come?”

“I gotta work, but thanks.”

“It's Sunday, take it off.”

“Can't take it off when my deadline is in three days.” Taehyung rubs his neck “It's fine.”

Jungkook hums and then swallows the last bite of toast, then he stands up “Guess I'll see you later? Wanna take a shower.”

“Sure. I'll meet you at the balcony, Juliet.”

“Why am I Juliet?”

“Pretty thing like you? You gotta be Juliet.”

“You're obviously the pretty one here.”

Taehyung waves a hand at him “Points of view.”

“Thanks for breakfast, Mercutio.”

Taehyung frowns “Isn't he the dude who dies?”

“Yep.”

“Fuck off.” Taehyung's eyes suddenly widen “Actually, no! Wait here a second!”

Jungkook frowns as Taehyung rushes off the stools and runs to the living room, Jungkook follows him there confused at the sudden burst of energy.

Between a canvas that is half white half painted with angry straight lines of metallic gold, Taehyung is crouched in front of a cardboard box, its contents rustling together as Taehyung searches for something. He suddenly stands up, holding what looks like a tinier black box.

“I have a present for you.” Taehyung says, rushing back to Jungkook “Hands.”

Jungkook puts his hands in front of him, palms up, Taehyung gently puts what he's been holding onto them and Jungkook's breath gets knocked away for a second or two. Maybe more.

It's a camera. An old one, with even a scratch on the black material on the front, but still well kept, the lens shiny and untouched.

“Plaubel Makina W67.” Taehyung says with pride “And that's literally all I know about it 'cause ever since I bought it I never used it. Photography is hard.”

“You-” Jungkook looks at Taehyung “You're giving this to me?”

Taehyung nods “Yeah, it's a present. You should take some photos with it, yeah? I don't have any films for it, but I know a place that still sells them, I'm sure you know more about them than I do. We can go there one of these days and get some films, you choose.”

“I can't accept this.” Jungkook whispers, just a bit overwhelmed “Taehyung, this- holy shit, this is expensive!”

“I know, I paid for it.” Taehyung shrugs “But wouldn't it be better if at least someone used it? If I keep it, that beauty will just keep accumulating dust.”

Jungkook blinks “That doesn't mean you can just-”

“Besides,” Taehyung cuts him off with a small smile “I feel like your photos will be good.”

“Tae, I-”

“Just take the goddamn fucking present, Jungkook.”

“Well damn, okay.” Jungkook holds the camera to his chest “Thank you.”

Taehyung nods “You're very welcome. Now you can go home.”

Jungkook laughs at the madness of it, of Taehyung making him breakfast and then gifting him a camera that costs more than he'd like to admit, but he still goes to the front door and opens it to leave.

“Jungkookie.”

Jungkook turns to Taehyung, who's smiling at him “Sometimes forcing good things isn't bad.”

And Jungkook, as much as he likes having the last word, is at loss. So he keeps quiet, nods, leaves Taehyung's flat.



It feels a lot like coming home, having a camera in his hands again. Jungkook spends an entire hour tracing the edges of the camera, feeling the material under his fingertips, opening it carefully to be more familiar with it, looking through the viewfinder. He's never owned nor used a Makina, but he his previous camera was still one with a medium format rangefinder, so he at least knows what to expect from it.

And, well... there's something that feels a lot like excitement in his veins at the idea of using it for the first time.



“What photos should I even take?” Jungkook mutters as Taehyung and he make their way to the store the elder told him about.

“Whatever you want.”

“That's not-”

“Jungkook, you take beautiful pictures of beautiful things.” Taehyung says with a certain finality “That's just how it works.”

It's funny, then, that the first thing Jungkook wants to capture with that camera is Taehyung.





“You want ten Ilford Delta films?” the man behind the counter asks Jungkook with huge eyes “3200, that one?”

“Yes.”

“I mean, that's pretty low-light, pictures will be grainy.”

“I know.”

“If you don't have the right lights nothing at all will come out.”

“Yes.” Jungkook takes a deep breath “I know.”

Taehyung, behind him, snorts.

“Ah, five Fujichrome Velvia 50 films, too.”

The man looks like he's about to tell him that if he takes pictures of people with that film then everything will turn out too purplish, but he keeps his mouth shut and walks away to get the films.

“Not gonna lie,” Taehyung says “I kinda like it when you speak all technical and shit.”

“Thanks? I guess?”

“Talk Kodak to me.”

“Okay, shut up.”





Jungkook now remembers why he likes taking pictures that much. He remembers it as he's trying the camera and films for the first time at a park, during twilight, Golden Hour just passed, and he takes his first picture of a couple arguing over something.

When you take photos you can, even if for just a second, focus on their problems instead of yours.



 


 

 



The first time Jungkook photographs Taehyung, they're at an art exhibition.

Taehyung kind of dragged him there, as Jungkook wasn't really interested, but the artist insisted that seeing art always inspires, even a photographer and that he really wanted to see this one. So, of course, Jungkook agrees.

He's glad he did.

Jungkook has never really been one for contemporary art, he either doesn't understand it or it downright pisses him off.

“It's a pile of rocks.” Jungkook seethes as soon as they're in, staring at the first installation. Huge white room, huge pile of rocks.

“It's a metaphor, Kook.” Taehyung replies.

“It's a goddamn pile of rocks.”



Jungkook doesn't feel inspired at all, he does take a few shots of people looking at the artworks, but other than that he'd rather enjoy the sound of Taehyung's voice as he explains to him one of the paintings, low as to not disturb the people around them.

It's when they walk in the next room that Jungkook feels, for the first time, inspired. Not by the art.

The whole room is dark if not for the LED neon lights attached to every wall, to the ceiling as well, forming words sometimes, other times shapes, put in a way that creates a game of lights Jungkook didn't know was possible.

He looks at Taehyung and finds him smiling. And for the first time Jungkook thinks that maybe this is his only real smile.

So he lifts his camera just as Taehyung is about to tell him something, looking at his left, and Jungkook pushes down on the shutter release.

Taehyung turns to look at him, surprised by the sound “What are you doing?”

“Taking photos.”

“Of me?”

“Yeah.”

Taehyung rolls his eyes and fixes him with an unamused look “You should take photos of the art.”

Jungkook takes another one, the click of the shutter closing echoing in the quiet room “I am.”

Taehyung blinks and again he smiles, eyes warm as they look at Jungkook, teeth showing, cheekbones flushed “Shut up.”

Jungkook takes another one.

“Jesus.” Taehyung looks down, still smiling.

Flustered is a look that, weirdly enough, suits him. So Jungkook takes yet another photo, just before Taehyung slaps him on the forehead and walks away.



Muses are a weird thing. Jungkook never had one. Taehyung claims he has many. That even his fucking cat is his muse.

Well, Jungkook found his muse. He was looking at art. His muse was looking at art and so was Jungkook.

He's not even surprised.

He's not surprised at all, not even when they're out for coffee, sitting outside at the tables, Taehyung is looking at the road and Jungkook takes a picture of him.

“Stop.”

“Nah.”

Taehyung turns to him, rests his chin on the palm of his hand, slender fingers against his cheekbone “You're annoying.”

Another photo, Taehyung finally breaks in a smile and shakes his head.



There are things Jungkook notices as he keeps taking stolen photos of Taehyung.

His muse has a mole on the tip of his nose.

His muse has thick eyelashes.

His muse has a plump bottom lip.

His muse has one monolid, the right one, and a double eyelid, the left one.

His muse's hands are so horribly attractive that Jungkook starts taking photos of those as well.

His muse is really fucking beautiful.

Jungkook is in love with his muse.

Nothing surprising.



Taehyung slowly starts coming to terms with it, with the constant presence of a camera around him, he stops telling Jungkook to put it away.

Jungkook particularly likes taking photos of Taehyung when he works, with his fingers dirty with paint, the makeup on his eyes smudged.

“I hate acrylic.” Taehyung says, staring at the canvas, he's been working on that one for weeks “Smells horrible.”

Jungkook is sitting on the couch, a cigarette burning out between his fingers, camera on his lap “Then use something else.”

“Can't, this ain't for me, it's for a client, he wants acrylic.” Taehyung sighs “Piece of shit.”

Taehyung is painting flowers. Just a field of flowers, that seems to never end, but the sky is a blue that is almost black, with no stars, just clouds, the shades of the flowers incredibly dark. It feels eerier than what it should probably be.

“What do you like using?”

“Watercolors.” Taehyung replies “I love watercolors.”

“Yeah?”

“'Cause they last for years. You need only a tiny amount of water and the color just comes alive again. They never really end, watercolors. They're always there, looking dry and ruined and cracked, but you give it some drops of water and you can paint a whole word.” Taehyung sighs “I wish I was painting with watercolors right now.”

But Jungkook has seen Taehyung paint with watercolors. He looked miserable when he did.

Taehyung heaves a sigh, puts the brush away and looks up at the ceiling, probably stirring his neck. Jungkook takes a picture of him. The natural sunlight that comes from the open window is just right, after all.



 






He's panting on the floor of the dance practice room, sweaty in a way that is disgusting and feeling trapped once more.

He's starting to think that maybe he hates dancing.

Jimin, on the other hand, he still loves it. Maybe even loves it more than before, still trying out some moves in front of the mirror.

Jungkook once thought that maybe Jimin loved dancing more than Yoongi, that Yoongi's only rival was dance.

“No.” Jimin had told him, with a smile on his face “No way I love dancing more than him. No fucking way.”

Jungkook wonders, sometimes, just how much Jimin loves Yoongi. Maybe too much.

But now, looking at Jimin dancing like his life depends on it, smiling at his reflection, confident and happy in a way Jungkook knows will never be, he can't keep it to himself. It hurts too fucking much.

“Hyung.”

“Mmh?”

“Hyung, I feel lonely.”

Jimin stops dead in his tracks. He looks at Jungkook from the mirror's reflection, his chest rising and lowering fast, eyes wide.

Jungkook swallows “I feel lonely, hyung.”

Jimin turns to him, stares at Jungkook for one second before he's rushing to him, falling on his knees in front of him and Jungkook closes his eyes once Jimin hugs him, pushing him flush against his body, small hands gripping his sweaty t-shirt.

“Jungkookie, it's okay.” Jimin whispers “It's gonna be okay.”

Jungkook believes it for as long as Jimin hugs him. It's hard not to believe someone like Jimin.

It feels a little pathetic to cry on Jimin's chest. But even though Jimin is shorter than him, less broad, even though he looks so delicate- despite all of this Jungkook has never felt so small in his entire life.



 


 

 



Jungkook is out of milk. Jungkook is also lazy as fuck. So he decides to go and see if Taehyung has some milk to spare.

This right here is an excuse. Taehyung doesn't have milk, Jungkook knows, but he hasn't seen Taehyung in two days and he's kind of really fucking missing him.

He's about to ring Taehyung's flat when the door opens and Jungkook almost has a heart attack right here right now.

“Seokjin-ssi.”

Jin gives him a broad and genuine smile “Hey! Jungkook, right?” Jin closes the door behind him “I thought I told you to call me hyung.”

Holy shit.

“Right, sorry.” Jungkook manages a nervous smile “I- I wasn't expecting to meet you here.”

Jin's smile falters a bit, he sends a look at the closed door “Yeah, Taehyungie wanted to see me.”

They were fucking.

They were, weren't they? Isn't that what they do? Kim Seokjin, sometimes, fucks his muse.

Jin frowns at him, but then his features soften “Ah, not... not for that.”

“Sorry.” Jungkook clears his voice “Sorry, I didn't mean to-”

“It's fine, don't worry. But, well, Tae and I haven't really done anything for a while.”

Jungkook, stupid as he is, feels relieved.

“He called me 'cause he wasn't feeling well.”

“He's sick?”

“No, he's-” Jin presses his lips together “He's feeling a bit down? I guess?”

“He's lonely?”

At this, Jin arches an eyebrow, his eyes lingering on Jungkook's for a while “You know?”

Does he?

He's not sure he does right now.

“I know enough.”

“Okay. Well, I don't know how much you know but- shit, that's not my place to- whatever.” Jin shakes his head and smiles again “I think it's better if you go inside, you might get him to open up a bit. I couldn't.” Jin pats his shoulder, gives it a friendly squeeze “We should meet again! Maybe for dinner or something, with the others as well.”

“We should.”

“I'll see you then, Kook-ah.”

Jungkook nods, bids his goodbyes and Jin walks to the elevator, leaving Jungkook alone in front of Taehyung's flat. He takes a deep breath and finally rings the doorbell.

After seconds of silence, the door opens, revealing a very tired looking Taehyung.

“Kook, hi.”

“Hey. Bad time?”

“Yes, but come in.” Taehyung steps aside, massaging the bridge of his nose, Jungkook goes inside and closes the door behind him.

Taehyung walks straight to the stool in front of his canvas, his silk robe falling loosely off his shoulder. It's the same painting, the one with the flowers and the dark sky.

Taehyung lights up a cigarette and takes the brush from where it's been put on the wooden cart Taehyung keeps close to him, with colors, his palette, a jar of water and his brushes.

Jungkook sits at his usual spot on the couch. Taehyung isn't just tired, he's nervous as well. On edge. Like something is gonna snap soon.

“I saw Jin-hyung as he was leaving.”

“Ah, yeah.” Taehyung swallows hard “Came to say hi.”

Jungkook doesn't ask him why he's lying, he doesn't need to.

“You know that Jin and I used to fuck?”

Jungkook nods “Yeah.”

“We haven't in a while.” Taehyung blows out smoke, takes a brush and dips it lightly in a very dark red.

“Okay.”

“I don't know why I'm telling you.” Taehyung starts painting again what seems to be a withering poppy in a corner of the canvas “But I owe you an apology.”

Jungkook frowns, he sees Emilie walking away, probably to the kitchen “An apology.”

Taehyung nods, cigarette hanging loose from his lips “Jin used to fuck my loneliness away.”

Jungkook waits. Taehyung usually has a lot to say, so he waits.

“He used to fuck my loneliness away even before he knew he was doing that.” Taehyung sniffs, scrunches up his nose “When he learned he was, he stopped. Felt like I was using him, which I was.”

“Okay.”

“I used you, too. Haven't I?”

Jungkook looks at his hands “So have I. We used each other but we knew we were. I don't need apologies. I'd let you use me again, you'd let me use you again, too.”

Taehyung keeps painting for a while without saying anything. Jungkook can see that his hand is shaking around the brush but he doesn't speak.

“Yeah, I would.” Taehyung finally admits “Which isn't very healthy but, hey, what do I know of healthy? Jackshit. You see, Kook, we cure loneliness the way we can. This is the one we chose.”

“I guess you're right.”

“I don't want you to think you're a substitute for Jin, 'cause you aren't. Jin and I didn't have-” Taehyung wets his lips “We didn't have something.

But they do. Jungkook knows they do.

Taehyung puts the cigarette in the ashtray on the cart, makes it to dip the brush in the water but he knocks the jar off with his hand, water spilling out on the floor and jar falling off the cart and it lands on the floor, shattering into shards.

Jungkook stands very still, his eyes on Taehyung who's just staring at the mess of glass on the floor. Taehyung blinks, takes a deep breath, stands up from the stool and then kicks the cart, hard enough for it to fall on the floor as well, colors splashing on the floor and mixing with the cigarettes that were in the ashtray.

“Fuck this.” Taehyung hisses “Fuck this painting, I fucking hate it.”

Jungkook slowly gets up from the couch “Tae.”

“I fucking hate it. That's- that's not even what the client asked me! He wanted a field with flowers and I'm turning it into a goddamn cemetery! So fuck it!” Taehyung's voice wavers and, Jungkook can see it, he's really close to breaking right now “Shit! I just want to work! I just want to fucking work, I can't stand this! I don't wanna feel like this, this is unfair! It's fucking unfair!”

“Tae, hey.” Jungkook tries the moment he sees Taehyung's eyes reddening and glistening with tears “It's okay, come here.”

Taehyung looks at him, bottom lip trapped under his teeth and finally gives in, going to Jungkook and pressing his shoulder on his shoulder. Jungkook wraps his arms around Taehyung's frame, holding him tight when he hears the elder take a shaky breath.

“You're good. You're good, don't worry about the painting.”

“My client's not gonna accept it.”

“You don't know that. It's still a beautiful painting, maybe he'll like it. And if he doesn't then fuck him, you'll find someone else, you'll create your stuff as usual. You'll be just fine.”

Taehyung sniffles “You're just saying it.”

Jungkook chuckles “What, are you whining? Are you seriously whining, you fucking child?”

“Oh, shut up.” Taehyung whines again.

Jungkook nuzzles against Taehyung's cheek, still rubbing his back “You're gonna be just fine. You're a bomb, aren't you? You're gonna blow everything up with goddamn fireworks and I'll be there to take pictures of it.”

“You don't wanna be near me when I explode.”

“No, I will.”

Taehyung just sighs, his lips grazing against Jungkook's shoulder “Kook?”

“Mh?”

“You said you'd let me use you again.”

Jungkook knows already what is about to happen “I did.”

Taehyung pulls back slightly, just enough for him to look at Jungkook, so impossibly close, eyes still wet flicking down to his lips “Can I use you now?”

Jungkook is fucking helpless to life, relationships, his passions, whatever, but he's mostly helpless when it comes to Taehyung.

He's quick to press his lips against Taehyung's, feeling the artist's body immediately relax, long fingers finding their way to his neck.

Jungkook doesn't know what Taehyung wants but he can guess from the way he kisses him, hard and fast, sloppy as hell, tugging at his bottom lip with his teeth, already grinding against his crotch; this isn't that different from their first night in that club.

Make it fast, make it hurt.

That's what Taehyung asked of him that time, Jungkook can feel that this time it won't be different.

So Jungkook grips Taehyung's hips, the silk of his robe so smooth under his fingers and he pushes Taehyung on the couch. He kneels on the floor in front of where Taehyung is sitting and doesn't even let him have time to speak before he unties the knot of the robe's belt.

“The fact that you really don't wear anything under this will be the death of me.” Jungkook says “You still follow your rule of keeping lube in one of the pockets?”

“Yeah.” Taehyung replies, looking at him with a somewhat dazed expression.

“Thank fuck for that.” Jungkook parts Taehyung's legs and before Taehyung can say anything else, Jungkook wraps his mouth around the head of Taehyung's dick.

Taehyung gasps, a hand flying to his hair and his legs squeezing around his hips. Jungkook may or may not have a thing for Taehyung's legs, so he grips his thighs and raises them, hooking them over his shoulders as he slowly starts swallowing Taehyung down, feeling his dick twitching and hardening in his mouth.

He starts bobbing his head up and down, cheeks hollowed as he sucks him off, Taehyung's hand tugging at his hair hard enough for it to sting, Jungkook finds himself liking it so he lets him do it, appreciating how vocal Taehyung is being, his legs quivering on his shoulders, Jungkook kneads the flesh of his thighs, skin smooth and warm.

Jungkook pulls back “Lube.”

Taehyung blinks at him once before he starts patting on the couch to find the pocket of his robe that has the small bottle, once he finds it he quickly gets it out and passes it to Jungkook.

He uncaps it, squeezes a decent amount on his fingers and rubs them together.

“Aren't my legs heavy?”

“Not really.”

“You fucking muscled bitch, bet you could fuck me against a wall if you wanted.”

Jungkook pauses at this “Shit, I could. I totally could. Next time, I swear.”

“I feel so blessed and spoiled.” Taehyung gives him a crooked smirk “Now get back to what you were doing, pretty thing.”

Fuck, why does it always feel so nice when Taehyung calls him that? Jungkook decides not to dwell too much on his evergrowing list of kinks and goes back to sucking Taehyung's dick, growing bolder and faster, lapping at Taehyung's length and then swallowing him down again until he sees the artist arching on the sofa, letting out a sound deep from his chest, legs squeezed around his head. Just then Jungkook starts prodding at Taehyung's entrance with lubed slick fingers.

“Oh, fuck.” Taehyung groans as Jungkook starts sliding a finger inside.

Jungkook hums around Taehyung's cock, the other clenching around his finger and moaning. The angle is awkward as hell and his arm kind of hurts, but Jungkook keeps going, adds another finger and carefully fingers him open, Taehyung squirming on the sofa and breathing heavily, eyes closed and mouth agape, Jungkook pulls away, manages to get his breathing back.

“I wish I had my camera right now, not gonna lie.”

Taehyung hums “Nuh-next time.”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah, just- don't stop, keep going.”

Jungkook is quick to comply, wraps his mouth around Taehyung's dick, crooks his fingers, thrusts them inside and out faster and harder, Taehyung's cock twitching. Jungkook isn't one to get too emotional or overdramatic when it comes to sex, he doesn't find much poetry in fucking. It's give and take, just like Taehyung told him. But, God- Taehyung can turn everything into art. Everything. Even this.

“Stop, oh God, I'm gonna cum.” Taehyung hisses, Jungkook pulls away, licks his lips under Taehyung's eyes “Shit, you're so fucking pretty.”

Jungkook could laugh at the irony, considering how stunning Taehyung looks right now, golden and flushed and intense, like usual, like always.

“You think you're good?” Jungkook asks, Taehyung nods quite aggressively.

“Hell yeah I'm ready, come on.”

“No, wait, condom.”

“Fuck the condom.”

Jungkook stares at Taehyung for maybe a little too long “Are you serious?”

“I'm clean.” Taehyung says “Can we? I just- I wanna feel you.”

Jungkook sighs “I'm gonna fucking die one of these days and it's gonna be your fault.”

Taehyung grins at him, smoothens down the hair that he's been gripping “Do that later. Make hyung feel good now.”

Jungkook is actually gonna die. Still, with trembling hands, he undoes the belt of his jeans, pulls down the zipper and briefs just enough for his cock to spring free, with his lubed fingers he gives himself a few strokes, makes it quick, he wants this to last, suddenly filled with the need to have Taehyung screaming.

He gets Taehyung's legs off his shoulders and pushes him down and off the couch, Taehyung yelping and landing with his ass on the floor.

“That was fucking rude.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes and lifts him up again, gripping at his waist tightly, Taehyung's eyes darkening “This is less rude.”

“Might want to shut up for a second.” Jungkook mutters, lining himself up with Taehyung's hole.

“Oh, baby, I'm not sure I'm going to shut up anytime soon.” Taehyung wraps his arms around Jungkook's neck, knees pressed tight on either side of his hips, looks at him with expectation burning in his eyes “Fuck me, pretty.”

Jungkook slowly pushes inside, feels Taehyung stretching around him, tight and the heat so fucking delicious, his eyes fluttering close and Taehyung moaning with that rich voice of his.

Jungkook, well, he had plans, he planned to keep this going for as long as he could. Taehyung, on the other hand, he has his own plans. He rolls his hips, fingers digging in Jungkook's shoulders, clenches around him and whispers in his ear with uneven voice “Fucking break me.”

Jungkook isn't even sure he can control his body when he slams his hips up, fucking inside Taehyung hard and fast since the beginning, giving him what he wants because this is Taehyung and they're using each other again, there's never been anything tender about it. Taehyung cries out, his head drops back, neck exposed and Jungkook latches his lips there, on the column of his throat, tastes his skin again because that is something he could never be tired of, lives to see red and purple bloom on gold, he swears to himself that this time he will take a photo of them.

For all the shit he talks, Jungkook has to admit that his arms are straining. He manages to lower Taehyung's back on the seat of the sofa, still holding him up by the waist and starts fucking into him faster, the sound of their skin slapping only urging him to give more and take more, Taehyung arching and moaning so fucking deep when he hits his prostate, his cock hard and curved on his stomach, precum pooling on his belly.

“Feels guh-good.” Taehyung blinks and Jungkook almost loses his mind right there when he sees tears “So fucking good, Kookie.”

Jungkook leans down on Taehyung's chest and leaves open-mouthed kisses there as well, licking and sucking, biting hard enough for Taehyung to sob and ask for more, to give him more, to call his name.

“You feel so good, Taehyung.” Jungkook manages, mouth dry and vision almost blurry “Taehyung.”

“Yeah, like that.” Taehyung rolls his hips, fucks back on Jungkook's cock “Such a- a pretty thing for hyung, fucking him so well, yeah?”

“Yeah.” Jungkook's fingers dig in Taehyung's soft hips, hips fucking harder and deeper.

“Only you.” Taehyung says, words almost lost in a moan “Only you fuck me like this. I want only you to fuck me like this.”

If Jungkook had found himself with a clearer mind, maybe if he weren't so busy fucking Taehyung for all that's worth, he'd probably cling to this words as if his life depended on it. And he will, he knows he will. For now all he does is leaning down and kiss Taehyung, lick into his mouth, groaning when the other tugs at his hair again, whispers how much of a good boy he is to him, his hips faltering and movements becoming frantic, too high off Taehyung and all he's starting to represent for him.

He holds off his orgasm, wants Taehyung to come first, just wants to fill his head with him, only him, even if it's just for a second, to have his muse think of him as something beautiful, even more than art, just for a second.

Jungkook keeps whispering Taehyung's name in the shell of the other's ear, reveling in the broken noises that leave Taehyung's mouth, the pleases that feel more like demands, long fingers trembling on his back.

Taehyung clenches around him, body taut, his voice cracking when he cums, shuddering hard and impossibly tight around him.

“Oh God.” Taehyung whimpers, blinking more tears “Fuck.”

“Too,” Jungkook swallows, tries to remember what he wanted to ask in the first place as he chases his own orgasm, so close and burning in his body “Too much?”

“I fucking love it, keep going.” Taehyung breathes out, eyes shut close, chest rising and falling fast “Inside, want you to cum inside.”

That's all it takes and fuck, he's not even surprised. Jungkook cums, choking on Taehyung's name, spilling inside him and holding the artist flush against him.

The silence that lingers in the room is broken by their ragged breathing, Jungkook too spent to even try and move, Taehyung rubbing his nose on the crown of his head.

“Thank you.” he whispers, sounding just a little wrecked “Fuck, thank you.”

“Yeah.” Jungkook chuckles “You're fucking welcome.”

“You think you're gonna move anytime soon?”

“Cut me some slack, I need a moment.”

Taehyung giggles, looking so endearing and soft and sated that Jungkook can't help but smile. Shit, he's stupidly in love.

“I can't believe I don't have a camera with me.” Jungkook whispers “'Cause you look fucking beautiful right now.”

Taehyung rolls his eyes “I can't deal with your sappy ass right now, not after you fucked me like this, it's just pure hypocrisy.”

Jungkook chuckles “Here's the plan. You go take a shower, I clean that mess on the floor, then we order take out and have a marathon of whatever drama you want, mh?”

Taehyung hums “I agree to this all, but you're showering with me.”

“Okay.”

Taehyung sighs “Look at me, a whole grown ass man who needs to be taken care of by a college kid.”

Jungkook frowns “You don't need anyone to take care of you. I do it 'cause I want to, you'd do the same. You've done the same.”

Taehyung murmurs an okay, pushes some hair behind Jungkook's ear, smiles at him with a look of utter fondness “Why do you take so many photos of me?”

“You're asking now?”

“Just answer.”

I love you. I love you so much.

“You're my muse.” that's only half the truth, but it's better than a lie.

Jungkook doesn't except the reaction he gets from Taehyung. But it's still what he gets and, shit, Jungkook swears he feels his heart twisting painfully in his chest the moment a tear rolls on Taehyung's cheek.

“Hey.” Jungkook pulls himself up a little, cups Taehyung's face “What's wrong? Is it because of the muse thing, is it wrong? I don't-”

Taehyung stares at him, blinking tears from his eyes that land on Jungkook's fingers and then his whole face twists in what looks like pain and something awful that Jungkook can't name, a sob wrecks its way up from Taehyung's chest and the artist curls his arms around Jungkook's neck.

“Shit, Tae, what's wrong?” Jungkook whispers, hugging him back with the care he'd use for a child “Why are you crying?”

Taehyung just sobs again in the crook of his neck, sniffling loudly and shaking.

“Jesus, Tae, you're worrying me so fucking much right now.”

“It's-” Taehyung tries, groans around another sob “It's juh-just that you- you mean it. I can fuh-feel that you mean it and I believe you. When you say it.”

Jungkook isn't sure he really understands, but he tries. He tries.

“Why would I lie about that?” he asks. Taehyung holds him tighter, whimpers on some words Jungkook doesn't catch. But he feels like he knows anyways “Taehyung, did someone-”

“No, don't.” Taehyung says, takes a shaky breath “Don't.”

“Okay, okay. Sorry.”

“I'm your muse.” Taehyung sighs “I'm your muse?”

“Yeah.”

“Your only muse?”

Who the fuck did this to him? Who was it that had ruined Taehyung so much that he has to ask something like this?

Jungkook breathes in the smell of sweat and Taehyung's coconut lotion “My only muse.”

“Okay.” Taehyung relaxes a bit “Thank you.”

Jungkook doesn't know for what Taehyung is thanking him, if it's because Jungkook let him use him again, if it's because he's not lying about him being his muse, he doesn't know. But it breaks his heart anyway.



Taehyung falls asleep at the fourth episode of Goblin, when everything is still somewhat happy and not horribly sad like it gets in the last episodes. Jungkook keeps watching with the artist curled up against him, carding fingers through Tae's grey hair. Emilie sometimes walks in the room, plops on her pillow, licks at her paws and then trots away again.

At some point, it starts raining outside, heavy and hard, raindrops hitting the window loudly, a thunder cracks in the distance. Jungkook gets the tv remote and turns it off, silence engulfing him. He decides to get Taehyung to bed and get some sleep, too. He gently scoops his arms under Taehyung's legs and lifts him up, groaning slightly at the dead weight, but he still manages easily to get to the bedroom, suddenly all the hours spent practicing and training don't seem so useless.

He puts Tae on the mattress and lays next to him, covers both of them with the blankets and gets his arms around the other again, just to make sure that if Taehyung wakes up he'll know he's not alone. Not tonight.

Not ever, if he can avoid it.



 


 



There's something that shifts after that day.

Taehyung, sometimes, out of nowhere and for no absolute reason, will drop a kiss on his lips. Sometimes it's a quick peck, sometimes it's longer and it ends with a sigh and a smile. Whatever it is, Jungkook loves it.

If he's talking about changes, then Jungkook knows something changed in the way they have sex as well. It doesn't feel like they're fucking anymore. It's different. It's more real. It feels like maybe they're not really using each other anymore but just enjoying it, just 'cause they're there and there's something and they want to.

Jungkook is learning every curve of Taehyung's body, every spot that has him melting, has an entire book of words and sentences that he knows Taehyung loves to hear. The one he loves most, apparently, is muse. So Jungkook says that as well when he's buried in Taehyung's heat, fucking him on the bed, he keeps whispering in his ear “My muse, Taehyung.”

And there is something else that adds to the entire contradiction Taehyung is. Taehyung likes it when Jungkook fucks him hard and fast like he wants to break him, with fingers digging into his skin and bites on his neck. But when Taehyung fucks him, it's always so slow, deep, long and careful, always pregnant with sweet words of praise and of how much of a pretty thing he is.



It also so happens that Jungkook, for the first time, sees Taehyung working with a smile on his face. It takes him by surprise.

Taehyung manages to still sell the painting of the flowers, the client enjoying the unexpected outcome, and for a while Taehyung decides no commissions.

Jungkook wakes up one morning in an empty bed and he finds Taehyung in the living room, windows of the balcony open, a soft breeze waving the curtains, sunlight still cold. Taehyung is sitting on his stool with fingers stained with black charcoal, drawing on the thick paper he has on his easel two figures. They're not realistic, they don't even have faces, but they look like they're dancing. Maybe. Jungkook isn't sure.

“What are you drawing?” he asks, Taehyung's smile only growing larger.

“Guess.”

“I don't know. They look like they're dancing?”

“Mmh, yeah, why not? Maybe they are.”

“You don't know either?”

“Nope. Just who they are.”

“'k.” Jungkook drops on the couch “Who are they?”

Taehyung sends him a quick look, eyes bright and skin glowing in the morning sun “It's us.”

Fuck, Jungkook is so in love.



 




 

He's in an actual good mood. Like, a really fucking good mood.

Jungkook wakes up in his apartment feeling a bit energized, ready for the day.

Goes to his lectures, takes notes, listens with actual interest, reaches Jimin for his dance practice, helps him through some sequences of the choreography Jimin is preparing for the audition for that dance studio, they laugh, even gossip, have lunch together.

Jungkook is just having a really good day.



He exits the elevator, it's early in the evening, he's just ready to go to his flat, wash up and put on clothes that don't smell of three hours of dancing when he stops dead on his track.

Taehyung is just outside his flat, door still open, a man in front of him, someone Jungkook's never seen. Maybe a client?

No. Not a client.

The man is fairly attractive, not very broad but tall. Jungkook can't hear what he's saying but, judging from Taehyung's sour expression it can't be good.

Taehyung says something back, jaw clenched, the man scoffs and talks again, this time more agitated, Taehyung looks down and shakes his head.

The man frowns, he seems to be asking him something. Taehyung sighs, looks up at him, shakes his head again. That's when this man who Jungkook has never seen raises his arm and slaps Taehyung. He slaps him. His fucking muse. So hard that Taehyung's head whips around and he stumbles on the side, holding on the wall.

Jungkook is on the man so fast he barely registers the moment he starts walking. He grabs the man's shirt, the other one letting a noise of surprise, Jungkook slams him against the wall.

“You fucking piece of shit, what the fuck do you think you're doing?” Jungkook hisses, his hands already itching to just punch him, slap him back, whatever.

“Stop.” Taehyung says, oddly calm.

“This scum just fucking slapped you!”

“Kookie.” Taehyung sighs “Don't. Let him go.”

Jungkook's heart is just yelling at him to throw this asshole off his goddamn balcony, but his brain reminds him that that would end up in murder, so he lets go of the man's shirt.

“Fuck.” the man quickly gets away from him, glares at Taehyung then looks back at Jungkook “I'm telling you now, he's not fucking worth it.”

Jungkook really wouldn't mind a murder right now “Get the fuck out of my sight before I get my hands on you again.”

“Fuck you, Taehyung.” The man says, words like venom on his tongue before he hurries away.

Jungkook moves to Taehyung, cupping his face and grimacing at the reddening on his left cheek “Christ, Tae, why did you stop me?”

Taehyung shrugs “Deserved it.”

Jungkook stills “What?”

“I deserved it.”

“What the fuck are you talking about? Who was that?”

“Come in, I don't wanna talk here.”

Taehyung pushes away Jungkook's hands and walks back inside, holding the door open for him until he steps inside as well.

“Tae-”

“Told you, I deserved it.”

“To get slapped?!” Jungkook scoffs “Hell no you didn't.”

Taehyung sighs and goes to the living room, dropping on the couch, he rubs on his cheek and grimaces “It's already swollen.”

“Taehyung, can you tell me what just happened?”

Taehyung shakes his head “I cheated on him.”

Jungkook frowns “Wait, what?”

“His name's Jaesung, we met in France, he was there for a students exchange. We got together but then he had to go back to Korea, we tried to keep it going even with the distance but-” Taehyung starts fidgeting “I stopped texting, stopped calling him, stopped answering his calls. He didn't stop. Then stuff happened in France. Not proud of it, but I thought it was over but it still wasn't, not for him at least, I was a fucking prick to him. I haven't seen him in more than a year. Today I met him at the store, invited him in for a coffee, you know for all time's sake, I don't know.” Taehyung looks at him “Then the discussion came up and he wasn't very happy.”

Jungkook blinks “Let me get this straight, this asshole slapped you for something he didn't even know happened and that happened more than a year ago?”

Taehyung rolls his eyes “Well, if you put it that way.”

“It's the only way to put it! Okay, you were an ass to him, doesn't mean he gets to lay a finger on you, are you kidding me?!”

“No, I deserved it. I did something fucked up to him, I deserved it.”

Jungkook wants to argue, tell him that no fucking way does that excuse what Jaesung just did, but he doesn't. Not when Taehyung has that look in his eyes. Jungkook doesn't know what it is, but it unsettles him. Scares him, even.

“Right now I just need some fucking tea, an ice pack and-”

“Lofi?”

Taehyung grins at him “Lofi.”



Jungkook finds Taehyung's headphones in his room, he walks back to the living room and puts the headphones on Tae's head “I'll make you some tea.”

“Thanks.” Taehyung says, plugging the headphones in his iPhone “I'm sorry you had to witness that.”

“I'm sorry, too, if I have to be honest.” Jungkook gives his shoulder a squeeze and walks to the kitchen.

He starts boiling some water, still upset by what just happened. He's not sure how to act now, if he has to try and make Taehyung understand that what Jaesung did isn't excusable, but at the same time he has a feeling he's diving in open and dark waters. Taehyung doesn't like talking about France or what happened there. Jungkook doesn't like the look in his eyes when he does.

Absentmindedly, Jungkook opens the wrong cupboard door in search for the tea, is about to close when he sees the little boxes. Jungkook doesn't recognize most of the names on the side of the boxes, but he's fairly familiar with one of them. His father used that, after Jungkook's grandfather had passed away. Jungkook's dad could barely sleep those days. Woke up screaming. His anxiety eating him alive.

So Jungkook is familiar with Prozac and he knows for what it's used. He can only guess what the other boxes are. Antidepressants are easy to recognize.

Jungkook closes the cupboard door, opens the right one, gets Taehyung's favorite tea, orange and cinnamon. He lets it brew for a few minutes then fills a mug and walks back to the living room. Taehyung is listening to the music with his eyes closed, knees close to his chest. Jungkook taps on his shoulder and Taehyung opens his eyes, lowering the headphones, muffled music can be heard.

“Thanks.”

“You're welcome.” Jungkook takes the remote and turns on the tv and the DVD player, where he knows that a DVD of The Heirs is still inside from a few nights ago. He plays a random episode and sits beside Taehyung, the artist quickly making himself comfortable against his side, warm mug between his hands.

“You're feeling lonely, Jungkookie?” he asks.

“No.”

“Then why The Heirs?”

Jungkook swallows and kisses Taehyung's temples “We're not watching it for me.”

Taehyung mutters an okay, sighs and leans on his side a bit more.

Jungkook finds out that now he's helpless to one more thing. Really fucking helpless. And that his muse might be as well.





 

Chapter Text

Oh feel our bodies grow

and our souls they play, yeah

Yeah love I hope you know

How much my heart depends, yeah



 

 

 

Taehyung never really opened up with Jungkook. He knows this. He's fine with it, even, people have their own baggage of shit that weights on their shoulder, Jungkook is well aware. Pushing people to open up it's nasty. But after what Jaesung did to Taehyung right in front of his eyes, after Jungkook has seen exactly the toll that loneliness took over Taehyung and heard what Taehyung said about deserving actual physical pain, two things happen.

The first one: Jungkook wants to know. Jungkook wants to push and push until Taehyung tells him what happened, what is happening and what will happen.

The second one: Taehyung manages to become even more reserved about everything that is about him. He skips over questions. Avoids answering all together sometimes. Stops mentioning France.

And Jungkook, as much as he wants to push, doesn't dare to do so. He has a feeling that, right now, Taehyung's bomb could explode at any sudden movement. It's the old problem, you have two wires, the red one and the blue one. Cut the wrong wire and everything gets blown away. Jungkook is all about self-preservation, so he throws the scissors away and doesn't cut any wire.

Instead, he does what he does best: taking pictures of Taehyung.

If at first Taehyung was sketchy about it, after Jungkook told him he's his muse he seems to enjoy it. He looks relaxed when he takes notice of the clicks of Jungkook's camera shutter, shakes his head a bit with a small smile on his lips and keeps doing what he's doing, be it painting or listening to music or pet Emilie.


“Why do you only take pictures of me when I'm not paying attention?” Taehyung asks him one afternoon, Emilie purring on his lap whilst Tae sits on the couch.

Jungkook shrugs “It's all about stolen moments for me. I have my aesthetic just like you do.”

Taehyung pouts, Jungkook feels fondness burst in his chest “I wanna pose for you.”

“Okay, clothes off.”

Taehyung grabs a pillow and throws it in Jungkook's face “You fucking pervert.”

“I don't like photos where the models pose!” Jungkook retorts.

“Oh, come on!” Taehyung bats his lashes “Just let me pose once.”

Jungkook feels like his aesthetic can be damned when he has Taehyung pouting and whining and acting like a spoiled brat.

“Will you act all flamboyant and shit?” he asks.

Taehyung scoffs “What kinda fucked up question is that? Of course I will.”


Fifteen minutes later, Taehyung comes back with makeup on his face, a long earring dangling against his neck and a pair of horrible heart sunglasses that seem to have come out from an 80s music video.

Jungkook bursts out laughing, Taehyung seems awfully proud of himself and yes, he acts flamboyant and his poses are silly and overdramatic, but Jungkook loves it all the same.


In doing so, in taking photos of Taehyung, Jungkook feels like maybe he's helping the other. Keeps him distracted, keeps him happy, keeps him smiling, keeps him working, keeps him going. Maybe. It's a stretch but Jungkook will take what he can get.

In doing so, Jungkook ignores his own problems. He knows he's being fucking careless. But he thinks that maybe if he surrounds himself with photos, music, art and Taehyung then his problems might really just disappear (that's a lie, he knows they won't, his chest feels hollow every time he's left alone even for a fucking minute whilst the world keeps moving without him).

So he ignores it all. Keeps his issues hidden in a very far place of his mind until they just become white noise, buzzing in the back of his head, keeping him awake at night, fucking him up so slowly that he doesn't even realize it.

He doesn't want to.



 


Jungkook gets his photos developed after Taehyung literally can't stop talking about it.


“I wanna fucking see them.”

“No, Tae.”

“Yes, I wanna see them. Get them developed.”

“No.”

“I said yes, you burnt piece of chiken nugget.”

“What does that even mean?!”


Two weeks later and Jungkook actually has physical copies of his photos. It feels a little unreal. The nerves, though, those feel very real.

Taehyung is sitting on the stool in front of the kitchen island, eyes closed, body buzzing with excitement as Jungkook takes the photos out of the yellow envelope that protected them.

“Come on, come on, come on.” Taehyung whispers.

“Jesus, have some patience.”

“Patience? I don't know her, who's that?”

“Shut up.”

Jungkook didn't bring all of his photos, obviously, some of them are terrible and he's even fucking ashamed of those. But he has some he kind of is proud of so he settled on them.

Jungkook carefully places the photos on the table, feeling the pleasant grain of the film under his fingertips. He worries his bottom lip, sending them one last look. It's not that they're bad, he knows they're nice. But that's probably all they are, nice. Nice pictures. And they're nice because Taehyung is in basically all of them, although there are some that have as a subject other people, strangers he saw in the street or in little cafès, but when the subject is beautiful it doesn't take that much for a photo to be nice and-

“I'm growing old here.” Taehyung says, his eyes still closed and his fingers tapping on his knees.

“Sorry, I'm panicking.”

“Panicking? Kook, it's just me.”

“Yeah, it's you. Famous artist you.”

Taehyung groans “Also your friend and basically lover.” Taehyung grins “Just show me. I wanna see.”

Jungkook heaves a sigh “Fine, okay, whatever. Open your eyes.”

Taehyung does so, squealing with excitement and his eyes immediately fall on the photos in front of him, Jungkook holds his breath.

Taehyung stays quiet as his eyes scan over the pictures, his smile slowly turning into something softer, fingers hovering just above the different sets of photos. Jungkook thinks that there isn't much to see in terms of technique, Tae told him to take photos of beautiful things and Jungkook did just that. He took photos of Taehyung and made them grainy, black and white hues or warmer unnatural colors, 'cause that's what he likes.

Do it for the aesthetic, that's another thing Taehyung told him, Jungkook listened.

Taehyung takes one of the pictures, looks at it for a few seconds before he huffs a laugh “When did you even take this? At the exhibition?”

“Yeah.”

“You're sneaky as fuck, I didn't notice at all.” Taehyung puts the photo back on the table and keeps looking, sometimes leaning in to take a closer look, always with this small smile on his lips, a soft blush on his cheeks.

After what feels like an eternity, Taehyung takes another one from the set of sepia tones, warm and hard in the contrast.

“Is this how you see me?” he whispers, staring at the photo of him.

For someone who talks so much shit, Taehyung is really easy to read, especially if he's flustered. He gets a bit quiet, smiles like no one should notice.

“I guess.” Jungkook replies.

“You guess?”

“It's just what I see, Tae.”

Taehyung nods “I like them.”

“Thank you.”

Taehyung arches an eyebrow and looks at him “'s that all you got to say?”

Jungkook rolls his eyes “Give me a break, I almost shat my pants when you started looking at them.”

Taehyung coos at him “Aaw, young artist grows up.”

“Shush.”

“Jungkook, darling, these are seriously nice.” Taehyung holds his hand, gives it a squeeze “More than nice. I'm actually fucking impressed, these are good.”

Jungkook hums “Sure, they're nice.”

“Did I say nice? No, I said good.” Taehyung puts the photo back and stands up, grabbing his pack of cigarettes and getting two. He gives one to Jungkook as he makes his way to the balcony, Jungkook following him.

Taehyung sets his cigarette alight then holds the flame near Jungkook's mouth, he leans down and lights up his own cig as well.

“They're not just nice, they are good.”

“Please, Tae. I'm an amateur and it shows.”

“I was an amateur as well once. Besides, what does that even mean?” Taehyung shakes his head “It's not about your method or technique and, even there, you're good. You use hard films to calibrate, that I know. But you're good at-” Taehyung squints his eyes “You're good at capturing the moments when people are the most genuine. Because you don't do poses, you see a moment where someone is thinking or focusing or a moment in which they appear bare and exposed and it shows in your photos. You're good at showing the world the way you see it, that's called talent. You're an amateur? So what, when there's talent the word amateur is nothing but a word.”

Jungkook, despite all, finds himself smiling, warmth spreading on his face. He breathes out a lungful of smoke and nods “Okay, then. Thank you.”

Taehyung nods back, a satisfied grin on his face, then he turns to watch the street beneath them, some cars driving by lazily.

Jungkook is not gonna lie, being praised and getting his photos recognized by Taehyung feels good. Not just because Tae is his muse and, well, feelings and all that, but mostly because Taehyung might not be a photographer but he is an artist, an incredible one at that. Artists are usually good at seeing beauty.

“Kook, can we be serious for a moment?”

Jungkook frowns “Yeah, sure.”

Taehyung presses his lips together, taps on the cigarette and lets ash fall off the balcony before he turns to look at him “Would you consider doing this as your actual job?”

“What, taking pictures?”

“Yeah. I mean, you should take it up a notch, make it professional.”

Jungkook scoffs “With college biting my ass? Don't have the time.”

“What are you even doing in college anyway?”

At this, Jungkook blinks “What do you mean?”

“Didn't mean to sound rude, sorry. It's just- Jungkook, let's be honest,” Taehyung leans back on the railing “You don't like your major. I'm not saying you don't like dancing, I'm sure you do and I'm sure you're a great dancer, but you don't care about it. You don't wanna become a dancer, or a dance teacher or a choreographer. So why are you still there? I mean, it's clear what your real passion is.”

Jungkook takes a deep breath and looks past Taehyung, Seoul stretching under his eyes, the sun slowly going down, wind getting a bit colder. He takes a drag of smoke.

“Are you telling me to drop college to do what? Follow my dreams?”

“I'm saying,” Taehyung looks at him, empathy and something else in his eyes “Life is already too shitty to stay in a place that makes you unhappy. Or that makes you feel stuck in a box.”

Jungkook doesn't reply and Taehyung doesn't push it. He goes back to smoking, looking at the buildings in the distance, sky turning orange and lilac with the twilight, smoke disappearing in the thin evening breeze.



 


Jimin has some sort of glow to him that make him stand out in a crowd.

“He's a scene stealer.” Yoongi once told him with a smile “Steals everyone's spotlight.”

Jungkook always liked this glow that Jimin has, this sort of never-ending light and hope for the future that has his eyes always bright. That's one of the main reasons he became Jimin's friend, after all.

They're in their usual coffee shop, eating lunch in between lectures that Jungkook feels they're suffocating him even more than usual.

“Taehyung is weird these days.” Jimin suddenly says “Kind of really weird.”

Jungkook hums around a bite of his sandwich “Probably because of Jaesung.”

“Who?” Jimin frowns “Who are you talking about?”

“You don't know?”

“Clearly.”

Jungkook hesitates just for a moment before he tells him what happened. He knows that it's something personal, but Jimin isn't just someone, Jimin is Taehyung's other half basically. So he tells him.


“He slapped Taehyung.” Jimin repeats, eyes hard and arms crossed “And you didn't kill him?”

“I was about to.”

“Shit.” Jimin sighs and pulls back his hair “Goddamn, I had no idea. Holy shit. Thanks for telling me.”

“Don't tell Tae I did.”

“No, I won't, don't worry.” Jimin presses his lips together “You know, sometimes I feel like France fucked him up.”

Jungkook thinks that, too.

“Don't know why, though. He rarely ever talks about it, every time we meet he skips over it, tells me he just worked so much he barely had time to see Paris. Which is bullshit. I know when he tells the truth or when he lies.” Jimin looks out the window of the café “Back in high school, Tae has always been a little moody. Like, all of us were, teenage angst and all that shit, but Taehyung- there were days when he'd be a fucking ball of sunshine and energy, literally lighting up entire rooms. Then there were the other days. I knew him the best and yet there were moments when I looked at him and thought that all I knew were lies.” a pause “Shit, sometimes I still do today.”

Jungkook hums “Yeah.”

Jimin sends him a look “You've been spending a lot of time with him, lately. Does he seem off?”

Jungkook keeps quiet.

“He's lonely like you, isn't he?” Jimin adds, gives him a small smile “He's always been, mh?”

“Maybe he's a little worse than me.” Jungkook replies, Jimin nods.

“Leave it to Taehyung to outdo everyone even when it comes to this stuff.”

At this, Jungkook chuckles a bit, Jimin shaking his head and moving his chicken salad around on the plate.

“Hyung.”

“Mh?”

“Taehyung and I,” Jungkook clears his voice “We have something.”

Jimin doesn't say anything for a while, just looks at him intently before he smiles “I know. That's hard to miss.”

Jungkook keeps a grin to himself “Is it?”

“At first I thought that maybe you fucked once or something.” Jimin shrugs “Because of the shit that happened at the club. But it's not just that. Everyone can see it.” a pause “I wonder how much of it Taehyung sees, though.”


 


 


Jungkook jumps over the railing that divides their balconies, finds the window open and he lets himself inside Taehyung's flat, as he moves away the curtains Jungkook finds Taehyung already sitting on his stool in front of a small canvas. It can't be larger than fifteen centimeters, not taller than ten. Tae, seemingly too focused on his work, doesn't says anything nor seems to have notices Jungkook. He dips a fine brush in a jar of water, dabs it against the canvas, then gets some color on the same brush. Watercolors this time, Jungkook is pretty sure Taehyung is painting his balcony.

Jungkook just walks to him and props his chin on Taehyung's shoulder, startling him and making him jump on the stool.

“Jesus fucking Christ, Kook.” Taehyung puts a hand on his chest “You scared me.”

“Focused much?”

“I was in another realm.” Taehyung chuckles, immediately getting back to work.

Jungkook can hear Lofi Hiphop playing again, volume low, this one is probably the “Rain in Paris” playlist.

He knows he should just get to his usual spot on the couch, but he's liking this. Being close to Tae as he works. No, okay, scratch that, he doesn't like it; he's craving it.

Contact.

Touch.

Whatever it is, maybe the attention.

“Why the balcony?” he asks, wrapping his arms around Taehyung's waist.

“I like the balcony.” Taehyung replies “Reminds me of all our stupid conversations about escargots.”

“We did spend a very long amount of time on snails.”

“They're still a fucked up dish.”

“You haven't even tried them yet.”

“The concept itself is fucked up, let's be honest.”

Jungkook inhales deeply, the smell of the watercolors and Taehyung's perfume mixing together “We're doing it again, we give too much fucking attention to snails.”

Taehyung hums, cleans his brush in the water, dries it a bit on a stained napkin, dips it in the azure color on his palette “Let's talk about something else, then.”

“Don't have anything in mind.”

“You're not really making this easy for me, now I only have snails in my head, give me another topic for conversation.”

Jungkook thinks about it for a while but, he's gonna be honest, right now all he can think about is that he really wants to card his fingers through Taehyung's hair. Or maybe that he'd like Taehyung to do the same with his hair. Or both.

Instead, Jungkook starts leaving a trail of light kisses on Taehyung's shoulder, the robe he's wearing easily slipping off and giving him more access.

“Jeez, what's up with you today, mmh?” Taehyung asks, giggling quietly when Jungkook starts nuzzling against his neck.

“Nothing.” he says “Just wanna.”

Taehyung hums as he keeps working on the small canvas, colors spreading on the wet patch “Just wanna-?”

“Wanna touch.”

“Shit, you're feeling cuddly or something?”

“Cuddles sound nice.”

“Needy as fuck today, aren't you?” Taehyung twists his head a little “Wanna get on my lap, too?”

At this, Jungkook opens his eyes and stares at Taehyung, the other slowly catching on, arching an eyebrow.

“Wait, for real?”

“Don't make it sound like it's weird.”

“It's not, it's just unexpected.” Taehyung smiles “Okay, if you get off me we can cuddle, you can get on my lap, whatever.”

“'K.” Jungkook, although he's not very happy with the whole ordeal, steps back from Taehyung and waits for the artist to put his tools back on the cart “Is this a commission?”

“If it were I wouldn't be on my way to cuddle you, I have my priorities straight and that's the only straight thing about me.”

Taehyung stands up from the stool and grabs Jungkook's wrist, dragging him to the couch. He drops on the cushions and pulls Jungkook closer, he quickly puts his legs on either side of Taehyung's hips and straddles his lap, tucking once again his face in the crook of the other's neck, sighing in satisfaction.

“This is nice.” he says, arms loose around Taehyung's neck “Needed this.”

Jungkook feels Taehyung's fingers grazing between his shoulders, sending a few shivers down his spine “You know, you're kinda heavy.”

“You're heavy, too.”

“Shut the fuck up, you lift me up like I weight nothing.”

“That's because I'm strong, you're not that light.”

“It's because this ass is too thick.”

“Jesus Chr- shut up, Tae.”

Taehyung just laughs, Jungkook can feel the vibrations of it against his ribcage. The urge to touch gets a bit stronger, so Jungkook gets back to what he was doing earlier, leaving light kisses on every patch of exposed skin he can find. Beneath him, Taehyung hums.

“I was thinking of something.”

“What?” Jungkook asks.

“I kind of want to have an exhibition.”

Jungkook pulls back at this, his eyes wide “Yeah? With your works?”

Taehyund nods, his hands now on Jungkook's neck “Yeah, I have a gallery that's kinda been kissing my ass so they can host one. I have so much shit in my warehouse and-”

“Woah, you have a warehouse?”

Taehyung rolls his eyes “No, Jungkook, I have three years worth of art hidden under my bed.”

“Don't act like a smartass, it doesn't suit you.”

“Either way, yeah, I have a warehouse. And in that warehouse there's a lot of junk. And some decent art, too.” Taehyung starts rubbing circles on Jungkook's neck “I have a lot of sculptures, too. Never showed them, they're not that great. But they're not utter shit either and I almost fucked up my hands working on those. So yeah, an exhibition.”

“It's a good idea.” Jungkook says “I'd love to see all of your stuff, all displayed nicely and with fancy people drinking fancy champagne.”

Taehyung chuckles “Well, that's not the only thing I've been thinking about. I was also thinking that we should have this exhibition together.”

Jungkook frowns “Together.”

“With your photos.”

Jungkook blinks, lets the words sink in, the panic starts settling “What the fuck are you on about?”

“Before you say no, here's a list of reasons that explain why you should actually say yes.” Taehyung clears his voice “First of all, exposure. 'Cause whether I like it or not, I am famous and people will be there, so people will see your stuff. Secondly, my good word on your works with other artists and, most importantly, with rich collectors. Third, your photos are beautiful and I shouldn't be the only one to see them. Finally, I am a narcissistic piece of shit and I look good in your photos.” a pause “That's the explanation.”

“Your explanation sucks.”

“Oh, I'm sorry, next time I'll give you a PowerPoint presentation.”

Jungkook groans “Tae, I'd like to remind you that I still haven't decided what to do with College or- well, with anything. You can't just ask me to host an exhibition with you.”

“I'm not asking you for an immediate answer.” Taehyung grumbles with a pout, the little shit “You think about it then come back to me and give me an answer. Also, college doesn't have much to do with this. Just- promise me you'll think about it, because it's a good thing. And good things are always welcome.”

Jungkook worries his bottom lip, trying to ignore the pleading look Taehyung is sending him. It's not that the idea isn't tempting, it is. But he's scared shitless. Not of the exposure, not of possible harsh critics or complete lack of interest by whoever would show up at the exhibition. He's scared of showing the photos he took of his muse, of the man he's in love, to others. Because he took photos of someone he loves the way he sees him and, therefore, that love will be obvious to the eye. And how can someone not fall in love with Taehyung once they see him under that light? It's easy to fall for him even without fancy coloring and pretty photos, but add those? The whole world will be kneeling at Taehyung's feet, begging for a shred of the attention Jungkook is receiving.

“I'll think about it.” Jungkook finally says “I really will.”

“Good.” Taehyung smiles “Now, weren't we supposed to cuddle?”

Jungkook hums and gets back to his spot, relaxing on top of Taehyung and sitting with his full weight, Taehyung just groans a bit but doesn't tell him anything. Honestly, Jungkook is fucking delighted right now, pure bliss right here. This morning, he woke up feeling restless and anxious which is really not the kind of mood he wants to have when it's a beautiful sunny Saturday. He likes his Saturdays, he likes to go out, have a coffee, maybe join Jimin and Yoongi for lunch, but today the sole idea of leaving his house made him want to cower in a corner and never get up. But right now Jungkook feels good.

Warm.

Safe.

Whatever it is, he likes it.

He feels Taehyung's fingers in his hair, playing with the strands and massaging his scalp and Jungkook lets out a small moan, closing his eyes and enjoying the attention. There's lofi music playing, giving the room a pleasant vibe, Jungkook's mind stops buzzing and just fills itself with the sound of it, sometimes the noise of a car driving by down the street disrupts him but it's only for a second, Taehyung's breathing, slow and rhythmic, brings him back to the room immediately.

“You're feeling okay, yeah?” Taehyung asks him at some point, voice quiet.

“Yeah.” Jungkook sighs “Right now I'm feeling great.”

“And before?”

“Not as great. But I was fine, just- I don't know, it's nothing. I just really wanna touch you.”

“Yeah, you said that already.”

“I'm fucking craving this, really.”

“Okay, Kook, if that's what you want.” Taehyung murmurs “Anything else you need?”

“I might be feeling needy but you're being quite compliant.”

“It's not like you're asking me to murder somebody, you're just asking to touch me. I'm fine with that.”

Jungkook hums and decides to just give in to the craving gets his mouth on Taehyung's neck again. At first, it's just small light kisses, the drag of his bottom lip on the skin, Taehyung's low chuckles that sound a little bit better than the music they're listening to. But then the craving doesn't stop and it gets more persistent, it starts burning just beneath his skin and, soon enough, he's leaving open-mouthed kisses on Taehyung's jaw.

“This doesn't feel like cuddles anymore.” Taehyung says, Jungkook can hear the smirk in his voice.

“I don't want cuddles anymore.”

“What do you want?” Taehyung's fingers move on his shoulders “Tell hyung what you want.”

“Just- wanna touch.”

“Good. Touch me.”

Jungkook gets lost in the process of it, of marking Taehyung's neck, sucking bruises on his golden skin and lapping them. He gets so lost in it he almost misses the change in Taehyung's breathing, now faster, it hitches in his throat when Jungkook bites lightly on his shoulder. He doesn't miss the feeling of Taehyung's dick hardening against his ass, though, so he starts shifting his hips slowly.

“This started as cuddles, what the fuck?” Taehyung chuckles, Jungkook pushes away the fabric of the robe from his shoulder and starts sucking on his collarbones, wanting to paint them red and purple. His hands go down to Taehyung's hips, fingertips grazing on the skin with almost no pressure, just enough to have Taehyung shivering beneath him and feel a gasp leave his lips.

“You smell nice.” Jungkook says then “Like coconut.”

“Got a bath this morning.”

“Mmh.” Jungkook lets his eyes linger for a moment on the pretty patch of reddening skin he left “Wanna touch you more.”

“I'm so not complaining.”

“Can I eat you out?”

Taehyung's eyes fly open at this and he turns to Jungkook “Wait, really?”

“Yeah, really.” Jungkook frowns “Why do you sound so surprised?”

“It's just-” Taehyung clears his voice “No one ever, you know-”

“No, wait.” Jungkook blinks and holds up a hand “No one ever felt the absolute urge to eat you out when you smell like this and have an ass like that?”

Taehyung rolls his eyes but he also shakes his head and, yeah, Jungkook is not having it.

“Okay, on all fours.” he says as he gets off Taehyung's lap, even though he wouldn't have minded staying there a bit longer but, shit, priorities.

Taehyung seems a bit surprised by the sudden change of plans but, at the same time, he also undoes the ribbon of the silk belt that keeps his robe in place and he shrugs it all off, letting it drop in a pool of fabric next to him, then he gets on his knees and hands on the couch, Jungkook quickly sits behind him and grabs a pillow.

“Here.” Jungkook says, handing Taehyung the pillow “Put it under your chest, you're gonna be more comfortable.”

Taehyung does as he's been said, putting the pillow under him although he doesn't lean on it “Do I gotta do something or-”

“You just need to enjoy it.” Jungkook searches in the pockets of Tae's robe the small bottle of lube he knows it's there. He finds it and takes it.

“Okay.” Taehyung gets on his elbows then.

Jungkook leans down to kiss on the small of his back before he spreads Taehyung's asscheeks, uncaps with his teeth the bottle and starts squeezing the lube directly on Taehyung's hole.

“That's fucking cold.” Taehyung hisses.

“Shush, let me work.”

“Work? Forreal?”

“This is an art, Tae, shut up and enjoy it.”

Taehyung grumbles something under his breath and Jungkook decides to ignore him, focusing on the task at hand. He thumbs at Taehyung's hole, prodding at the entrance and smearing the lube around it, Taehyung sighs and seems to already be relaxing.

Without losing too much time, Jungkook gets both his hands on Taehyung's buttocks, spreads them and leans down. He licks a long stripe from Taehyung's balls to his hole and Taehyung's hips immediately falter, he almost tries to shy away from the feeling but Jungkook keeps him steady.

“Oh my God-” Taehyung gasps as Jungkook repeats the action “Fuck, this feels so weird.”

“Good weird?” Jungkook asks.

“Yeah.” Taehyung breathes out.

Jungkook quickly gets his tongue on Taehyung's hole again, lapping around the rim, teasing him and just riling him up a little, get him used to this, hands kneading the flesh of his ass. When Jungkook starts prodding at the entrance with his tongue, Taehyung moans and he drops down to the pillow, hands squeezing it tight and he pushes his ass back.

“Ah, fuck-” Taehyung swallows hard “Keep going.”

Jungkook hums and, this time, he doesn't hold back. He leaves long stripes, laps at his hole and sucks at his rim, applying more pressure until Taehyung is shaking, a trail of nonsense leaving his mouth, hips shifting without him even noticing, ass pushing back on his face to have more.

“I missed out on so much.” Taehyung slurs, half of his face pressed against the pillow “You're so fucking good at this, pretty.”

Jungkook hums, slips his tongue inside again, feeling the stretch of the ring of muscles, sucking on it and fucking his tongue inside. He slides his hand around Taehyung's stomach and circles his fist around his cock, feeling it hard and leaking, Taehyung whimpers.

“Like that, make me feel good like that.”

Jungkook might never find out how it is that Taehyung's voice and words do so fucking much to him, but he knows he's painfully hard and that he's loving the reaction Taehyung is giving him, choked moans and breathy moans, his skin flushing and legs quivering.

And maybe he wouldn't mind having those legs quivering with his head between them and- wait a goddamn second.

Jungkook pulls away and Taehyung lets an indignified whine “No, get back here.”

“Sit on my face.”

Taehyung, honest to God, spins around so quickly he almost falls off the couch “Wait an everloving second, what did you just say?”

“I want you to sit on my face.”

Taehyung blinks, eyes wide and a little dazed. Then he gives him this look, eyes half-lidded and a dark, Jungkook shivers.

“You want hyung to sit on your face?”

Fuck.

“Yeah.”

Taehyung smirks and plants a hand on his chest, pushing him down until his back hits the couch.

Slowly, Taehyung manages to maneuver himself so that he has his knees on either side of Jungkook's head and, honestly, the couch might be large but not so large, Jungkook is quite impressed.

“You sure, yeah?”

As an answer, Jungkook gets his hands on Taehyung's ass again and gives it a firm squeeze “Get on my face before I spank you.”

“That's for next time.” Taehyung says before he starts lowering himself.

Jungkook decides he's taking too much time and just grabs his hips and pushes him down on his face and immediately starts lapping at his hole again.

“Oh, God, yeah-” Taehyung chokes on a moan “Fuck, Jungkook this feels good.”

Jungkook moans when Taehyung shifts his hips further down, he spreads his cheeks and flattens his tongue against the hole, fingers digging in the flesh as he feels his saliva and the lube drool down his chin, sloppy and a fucking mess.

“Your tongue-” Taehyung hisses “Inside, fuck hyung's ass with your tongue.”

Jungkook obeys, thrusting his tongue inside and he feels Taehyung clenching around it, his breathing growing faster, legs shaking. Before he thinks about it too much, Jungkook adds a finger next to his tongue. It slips inside easily, Taehyung tightening and moaning before he relaxes once more. The angle is awkward and his wrist already hurts because of it but he doesn't care, he adds another finger as he keeps lapping at his rim and drags the pads on Taehyung's walls.

“Fuck, Jungkook, you're so good.” Taehyung says, voice breaking at the end, his hips pushing down on Jungkook fingers and tongue “So good for hyung, such a good boy.”

Jungkook hums, closes his eyes, sucks at his rim as he keeps fucking his fingers inside, looking for the bundle of nerves, wanting nothing more than feeling Taehyung spasm against him and cum. When he finds it, Taehyung cries out, arches above him and Jungkook can hear him jerking himself off, lewd wet sounds and the moans get higher.

Jungkook keeps his fingers there, pressing against his prostate, massaging it whilst his tongue keeps dipping inside his ass and laps at the rim, his own cock twitching in his sweatpants, leaking and making a mess of the pants.

“Gonna cum.” Taehyung whimpers, his hips shifting and his legs squeezing around Jungkook's head “Fuck, Jungkook, I'm gonna cum, shit-”

Jungkook presses his fingers against the bundle of nerves again, licks at his rim and Taehyung fucking screams his name, shuddering and cumming in his fist, clenching desperately around his fingers.

Jungkook drops his head back down, his neck straining and he starts getting his breath back, he slowly pulls his fingers out, Taehyung wincing slightly and letting out a sigh.

“That was-” a pause, then Taehyung laughs “Can we do this every day?”

Jungkook snorts, feeling a bit light-headed “Fine by me.” he wipes a hand over his mouth.

Taehyung carefully moves back, ending on the other side of the couch and putting his robe back on, although he leaves it open.

“How about we take care of you now, mh?” Taehyung moves back to Jungkook, sitting on his belly, Jungkook's hands go to est on Tae's parted thighs.

“It's only fair.” Jungkook says and Taehyung hums with a wicked grin.

“It is. Where did you put that lube?”

Jungkook feels around the sofa until he finds the bottle and he gives it to Taehyung, who quickly reaches back and pulls down the waistband of Jungkook's sweatpants, grabs his cock and strokes it.

“You're so hard, did you like having me on your face so much?”

Jungkook sighs, closing his eyes and finally getting some relief after having ignored his own erection for so long. He hears Taehyung squeezing lube on his hand, then there are slick fingers around the head of his cock and Jungkook's hips thrust up unconsciously.

“Wanna try something, 'cause you're so sensitive.” Taehyung says “If you want me to stop you tell me, okay?”

“Yeah.” as if he's gonna tell Taehyung to stop at any time, he's so hard and painfully aroused that he knows he won't last long.

Taehyung starts moving his lubed fingers around the tip of his erection, thumb digging in the slit. He doesn't stroke his length, just keeps kneading the head of his cock with skillful fingers, fast and applying just the right pressure, closing around it.

“Fuck, Tae-” Jungkook slurs “All of it, touch all of it.”

Taehyung shushes him “Trust me, yeah? Look at me.”

Jungkook opens his eyes, Taehyung tugs at his dick and then starts kneading the head again, drawing a moan from Jungkook who feels so fucking exposed under Taehyung's dark eyes, naked and bare even if he's still wearing all of his clothes.

“Good boy, pretty.” Taehyung swallows “You sound so fucking good, Kook. Keep your eyes on me.”

Jungkook does, feeling his body grow hotter under Taehyung's gaze as the man reaches back with his other hand as well. He grabs the base of his cock, holding it tight as he then starts to rub the palm of his hand on the head of erection and Jungkook swears he sees white.

His whole body seizes up, muscles clenching and his breathing gets stuck in his throat, a choked moan leaving his lips as Jungkook struggles to keep his eyes open.

Ta-Taehyung, fuck-

“Feels good?” Taehyung presses his palm harder, speeds up the rubbing, Jungkook arches and he feels tears welling up in his eyes “Answer me, does it feel good?”

“Guh-good.” Jungkook whimpers, he can't even bring himself to feel ashamed “So fuh-fucking good, I'm gonna cum.”

“Yeah? You can cum, pretty, but you gotta look at me.” Taehyung's words wash over him scorching hot and Jungkook whines, managing to hold eyes with his muse.

“Wanna cuh-cum, Taehyung. So close.”

Taehyung rubs his palm faster, slick with lube and pre-come and Jungkook cums hard, his hips kicking up and he can't even moan, can't even call for Taehyung's name, the orgasm so intense it leaves him almost numb, almost like he's blacking out.

Jungkook tries to catch his breath but, instead, he cries out when Taehyung stops rubbing his palm only to starts kneading at the head of his cock again.

“Tae, shit, wait-”

“Tell me to stop and I stop.” Taehyung says, his free hand cups the side of Jungkook's face “Want me to stop?”

Jungkook feels like he does because he just came and he's so sensitive that it hurts but it also feels unbelievably good. A messed up kind of good, but still good, it leaves his body tingling and his cock twitching weakly, still hard, the lube and his own cum making everything sticky and slick, Taehyung's fingers working on the sensitive spot, fast and with a hard pressure.

“Don't st-stop.”

Taehyung lets out a breathy sound, wipes away a tear from Jungkook's face “You're so fucking hot, so good, you take everything I give you.”

Taehyung.”

“Yeah, call my name. You're still hard, you wanna cum again?”

Jungkook doesn't even know if he can, but he sure as hell does want to, there's something building in his belly again, something that burns.

“Hurts-” Jungkook moans.

“Good hurting?”

“Good.”

Taehyung closes his fist around the head of his cock and starts stroking it, never on his length, only there on the tip, Jungkook thrashes beneath Taehyung and grasps at the pillow behind his head, his vision swimming and hushed words of praises reaching faintly his ears, Taehyung's voice so warm and low.

When Taehyung shifts his wrist and closes his hand around his cock Jungkook cums again, broken sounds leaving his mouth and his dick spurting white weakly as his whole body shakes. He feels Taehyung letting go of his cock and Jungkook finally closes his eyes, laying still and feeling everything and nothing at the same time.

“Babe?” Taehyung whispers in his ear “Hey, are you okay?”

Jungkook hums, fucking incapable of even using correct words.

“You sure?”

He nods.

“Okay. Wait here, I'm getting something to clean you.”

Well, it's not like he can move, his legs feel like jello.

After a while, Taehyung comes back and Jungkook feels what must be a damp warm towel on his belly, cleaning him off delicately.

“I-” Jungkook clears his voice “I missed out on this as well.”

Taehyung giggles and, fuck him, he sounds delighted “I had a feeling you would have liked it, you have a good stamina and you're sensitive, I wanted to try it.”

“Bless you for trying.”

“A night of trying new things.”

“I still haven't fucked you against a wall.

“Next time. Now, cuddles.” Taehyung pulls his sweats back up and he closes the belt of his robe, happily laying on the small free space between the couch and Jungkook, wrapping his arms and legs around him.

“You comfortable?”

“So comfortable.”

Jungkook scoffs “Good for you.”

“You're comfortable, too, you lying bitch.” Taehyung nuzzles against his cheek “Turn around a bit.”

Jungkook groans but still does as said and, soon enough, he feels Taehyung's lips on his, kissing him slowly, he's smiling.

“You know what I want?” Taehyung asks in a hushed voice?

“What?”

Bibim guksu.

“Shit, same.” Jungkook chuckles and he opens his eyes, finding Taehyung's face merely a few inches away from his “We can go get them later.”

“I wanna nap now.”

“'k, let's nap.”

They stay in silence for a while after this, too warm and sated to really do anything but doze off, until Taehyung breaks the silence.

“Kook.”

“Mmh?”

There's a pause then a small laugh “I like you so fucking much.”

Jungkook smiles “I know you do.” he says, when in reality he wants to tell him that he's in love. So in love.



 

 

The thing about Namjoon and Hoseok is that it is quite impressive that they managed to get together.

Jungkook has known Namjoon since high school, he was his upperclassman and generally a hyung he could trust and depend on. Especially when it came to getting free weed.

Namjoon has always been reserved, sometimes maybe a bit too much, he'd isolate himself fore weeks before just coming back as if he hadn't basically gone missing for almost a month. He always had a soft spot for Jungkook, always ready to help, to guide him, give him advice. And his advice rarely had been wrong, really.

Jungkook still doesn't know how Namjoon knows so many shady people with so many shady clubs and so many shady activities, but he doesn't ask nor does he care. He trusts Namjoon too much.

Namjoon meets Hoseok in one of those shady clubs. He was there with a group of friends (fucking slam poetry club) and he spotted Hoseok dancing alone in the middle of the dance floor as if he were competing for a national title.

To quote Namjoon's words: “He was hot and I'm weak to confidence. I can't dance for shit but I can offer people free drinks, so that's what I did.”

That and, of course, fucking Hoseok in one of the private VIP booths the club had to offer.

So, easy story, they met in a club, fucked in a club, didn't see each other for months after that until Namjoon literally slammed into him at college. They started dating, Namjoon courted the shit out of Hoseok just because Namjoon still believes in courting, cue the Library-sex-accident.

The reason why it is so impressive that they got together is that Hoseok is one of those people that can and will be loud. Loud when they're happy, when they're relaxed, when they laugh, when they scream, when they're mad or scared.

Namjoon is one of those people who will be quiet when they're happy, when they're relaxed, when they laugh, when they scream, when they're mad or scared.

Still, they're together. Happily and disgustingly together.

So, as usual, that Friday nigh Jimin starts whining in their group chat about wanting a night out and Namjoon quickly puts all of them in the VIP list for a new club that has opened not even three weeks ago and that, apparently, has great music. Also, the drinks are cheap.


In Namjoon's car there's American Hip Hop playing and Hoseok chatting with Taehyung about a movie Jungkook doesn't know.

“It's really fucking good! When the frogs start falling from the sky, that's a masterpiece of a scene!” Taehyung says, excited that he has someone he can talk to about the movie.

“I loved it so much!” Hoseok replies, just as passionate “The way the frog storm just brings all characters together and gives it all closure.”

“Frog storm?” Jungkook asks, frowning.

“It ain't that unusual.” Namjoon says, the fucking living Wikipedia “It happens often, animals get scooped up in, like, tornados and shit, it carries the animals for long distances and then as the tornado breaks the animals fall, too. It's usually fish and frogs.”

Jungkook hums, he goes back to looking out the car window. It's a chilly night, with some clouds in the sky, although it probably won't rain. Jungkook is wearing yet another one of Taehyung's shirts, legs clad in a pair of jeans that fit him a bit tight but Taehyung seemed to like that. Whatever, Jungkook isn't really feeling it tonight. It's not that he's in a bad mood, he kind of just wants to sleep a lot. But at the same time he wanted to see his friends, so there they are.



Inside the club, for once, it isn't hectic or as chaotic as it usually has been in the other places they've been. Sure, there's a lot of people, dancing and crowding the first floor, but the club is big and really tight when it comes to who gets in. You either are on a list or you booked in advance a table.

Jin came as well, face well hidden behind a mouth mask and a bucket hat. When Jin sees him, Jungkook notices his cheeks rising a bit, meaning he's smiling. The actor pats him on the shoulder and leans in.

“It's good to see you again!” he says, loud so that he can be heard over the music “How are you doing?”

“I'm good, hyung, thanks. You?”

“Ah, work is killing me, I'm glad I managed to find a free night for you guys.” Jin leans back then and Taehyung comes next, once more basically jumping on Jin.

“Hyungie!”

“Shit, he's calling me hyungie, what do you want?”

Taehyung scoffs “Unbelievable, now I can't even call you hyungie!”

“What do you want, Tae?”

“Get me something to drink, I'm a lazy asshole.”

“That you are.” Jin rolls his eyes “I'll buy the first round, guys.”


Three rounds later, Jungkook is happily dizzy with beer, Jimin is happily drunk with vodka and even more happily making out with Yoongi on one of the free sofas in the corner of the large room, Hoseok and Namjoon are laughing their asses off at Jin's jokes and Taehyung is- somewhere either taking a piss or getting weed.

Jungkook sips on his drink, something a little too sweet but still enjoyable as he watches a girl who is trying with all her mighty swing of hips to catch the eyes of a dude not so far from her, the guy too busy talking to his friend to notice her, but she's not giving up and, honestly, Jungkook admires her for it.

“Come here often?”

Jungkook frowns and turns on the stool, finding Taehyung perched on the counter with an arched eyebrow.

“Seriously? Come here often?”

“You don't like a classic pick up line like that?”

“No.”

“Okay, let me try again, turn around.”

“Jesus.” Jungkook turns back to the girl again, he hears Taehyung clear his voice.

“What's a pretty thing like you doing in a place like this?”

Jungkook snorts but he still turns to Taehyung.

“Looking for trouble, I guess.” he replies, he sees Taehyung's bottom lip tremble as he tries to keep in a laugh.

“Oh, you found trouble alright. Mind if I seat?”

“I don't.”

Taehyung sits on the stool next to his and quickly orders a Martini, leave it to Taehyung to enjoy that bitter mess of a cocktail.

“So,” Taehyung smirks at him “You look vaguely familiar, you know?”

“Do I? Who do I remind you of?”

“Of a guy that takes pictures of me when I'm not looking.”

Jungkook laughs “He sounds creepy.”

“No, he's actually really sweet.”

“Mmh. You know you remind me of someone, too?”

“Oh, he must be incredibly handsome.”

“He is. You remind me of him, he sat on my face not too long ago.”

Taehyung snorts, Jungkook finds himself biting off a smile and he hides it behind his glass.

“Well, he's a lucky guy.”

“Yeah, but his cat hates me.”

“A relationship ruined, what a tragedy.” Taehyung's eyes glisten a little under the hot pink neon lights of the club, his skin painted with hues of pink and gold “If you met his cat then I'm wasting my time here.”

“Why?” Jungkook asks, his hands almost itching with the need to touch.

“You met the dude's cat, that means you're taken and I can't hit on you.”

Jungkook licks his lips “I wonder about that. If I'm taken or not.”

Taehyung smiles at him “I'm pretty sure you're taken.”

Jungkook looks at Taehyung for a while “I wonder if he knows this. If I'm taken then he must be taken, too. For all I know, he could be hitting on someone right now, in a club, as he drinks a Martini.”

Taehyung presses his lips together and moves the olive in his drink around with the toothpick “No, he knows he's taken.”

Okay, maybe telling Taehyung that he loves him in a club isn't the best idea in the world but, shit, this feels like a decent enough moment. That is, until Jungkook feels a hand on his shoulder.

“Hey.”

Jungkook turns to the stranger, a guy who looks to be around his age, tall as him and fairly attractive, also fairly intoxicated judging by the dazed look in his eyes.

“Can I help you?”

“Come dance with me?”

“Sorry, I'm busy.” Jungkook swats the hand away from his shoulder, but the guy decides to put it on his arm now.

“Come on, just a dance.”

“Hey, dickhead.” Taehyung calls “He's busy.”

The guy gives Taehyung a quick glance, decides he's not interested and turns back to Jungkook.

“You look- well, you look fucking hot.” he slurs, Jungkook sighs.

“Thanks. Not interested.”

“You're a pretty thing.” The stranger leans down, suddenly too close and smelling like cheap rum, Jungkook grimaces. This is annoying as hell and it turns disgusting fairly quick as the man lowers his hand to his thigh, squeezing it firmly “You also look like you need a good fuck, what d' ya say?”

Jungkook is literally about to either headbutt the guy or kick him in the stomach, maybe both since he can't choose, but Taehyung is already on his feet. He grabs the collar of the guy's t-shirt and yanks him back, pushing him away and stepping in front of Jungkook.

“The fuck you think you're touching, prick?!” Taehyung spats, Jungkook has to blink to make sure what he's seeing isn't just a hallucination or- well, a wet dream of his, 'cause this is hot. Taehyung isn't one to get physical in fights, so this is fucking hot.

The guy almost falls flat on his ass but after a few stumbling steps he manages to get his balance back and he glares at Taehyung “Did you just push me?”

“Tae, let's go.” Jungkook gets off the stool “Come on, this is boring.”

Taehyung clicks his tongue, still throwing daggers with his eyes but he grabs Jungkook's hand “Fine, let's go.”

“Hey, I'm not done!”

“Jesus Christ.” Taehyung sighs, turning back to the man “I'm sure there's someone desperate enough to let you stick your tiny cock in one of their holes, you just have to keep looking.”

The man points a finger in their direction, almost trips on his own feet “Your slut over there might be willing.”

“Okay, fuck this.” Taehyung lets go of Jungkook's hand and marches towards the man, grabs his shirt, raises his fist and, under Jungkook's incredulous eyes, Taehyung delivers one hell of a punch straight on the man's jaw.

The man staggers back, Taehyung keeping him up by still holding tight on his t-shirt, he looks like he might punch him again just for the sake of it, a small crowd already witnessing the scene and hooting.

But the guy, as soon as the shock of the hit fades away, grabs Taehyung's wrist and, with a strength that comes out of nowhere considering how drunk he is, punches him back. Jungkook has only time to see the fist connecting with Taehyung's face and Taehyung losing his balance and ending falling against the stools as he looked for something to hold on. That's all he sees before Jungkook has the guy pinned to the floor and a fist raised in the air. But before he can ruin this guy's face, he feels hands around his chest and on his arms, pulling him up and away from the man.

“Fucking let go of me!” Jungkook yells, trying to break free of the hold.

“We need to get out now!” Namjoon says, he's the one who's dragging him away “Security is already here, let's get out!”

“He fucking-”

“Jungkook, shut the fuck up and move.” Yoongi hisses, he's the one holding his arm and he yanks him back, Namjoon almost pulling him up from the floor.

When he catches a glimpse of Jimin and Hoseok carrying Taehyung out as well he relaxes a bit and lets his friends drag him out of the club.

The sudden chill air that hits him once they're outside makes Jungkook shiver for a moment, Namjoon is still dragging him far from the building and they stop after a few seconds of hurried steps.

“I'm fine.” Jungkook says, finally pushing away Namjoon's arms.

“You sure, kid? You're breathing pretty hard.” Yoongi says, Jungkook nods.

His heart is beating like crazy, his mind is dizzy and he has adrenaline slowly fading away, his legs feel like they're about to give up on him so no, he's not fine, but he feels suffocating with Namjoon holding him that tight and he really needs to breathe right now.

“Holy shit, Taehyung.” Jin murmurs and Jungkook looks in his direction.

He finds Taehyung leaning against the wall of the club with blood staining his chin, teeth red as he hisses, his bottom lip split.

“Fucking piece of shit!” he exclaims, Jimin finds a napkin in his pocket and starts cleaning the blood on Taehyung's face.

“You're a fucking idiot, too!” Yoongi suddenly yells “You can't just fucking punch people!”

“Piece of shit touched him!” Taehyung screams “And he called Kook a slut, he wouldn't leave us alone!”

Jungkook keeps his eyes on Taehyung's face, flushed with anger, eyes wild, the cut on his lips deep and still gushing out blood and suddenly the air seems to have disappeared.

“You don't punch someone like that, Taehyung! He was drunk, he could've fucking broke a bottle against your face!” Yoongi says, pointing a finger at him.

“Oh, I would've loved to see your reaction if the dude did something like that to Jimin! Surely you would've talked it out in front of a glass of Chardonnay!”

“This isn't about me!”

“I can't breathe.”

The yelling stops and everyone turn to Jungkook, who seriously cannot breathe right now.

“Shit, Kookie, hey.” Hoseok is the first one who speaks, he puts a hand on Jungkook's shoulders with a tight expression on his face “Breathe in, kid, it's all right.”

Jungkook tries but his throat just closes, a lump forming, his eyes burn.

“I cuh-can't breathe.” Jungkook yanks away Hoseok's hand, that already started feeling like too much, his stomach twisting and he chokes on a gasp.

He sees Taehyung staring at him with huge worried eyes and then he's on his knees throwing up the Japchae he had for dinner, he can taste the beer coming up and the sweet cocktail he drank.

Jungkook spits, gagging at the disgusting aftertaste in his mouth and still struggling to breathe in as he'd like. Taehyung kneels beside him and, carefully, wraps his arms around Jungkook's shoulders and pulls him closer to him, Jungkook drops his head on Taehyung's chest and lets him caress his hair.

“It's okay, Kook, just breathe. I got you, okay? You're okay.” Taehyung whispers, not loud enough for the others to hear “You're just fine, baby, come on, relax and breathe, yeah?”

Jungkook swallows and tries very fucking hard to get some oxygen into his lungs, he swears he can't feel the tip of his fingers, but he does manage to steal a few shaky breaths.

“Shit.” Hoseok sighs “What a fucking night.”

“I'm sorry.” Taehyung says “I'm sorry I punched him, I wasn't thinking, okay? I'm sorry, I ruined the night.”

“No.” Yoongi groans “No, I'm sorry I yelled, I just got the scare of a fucking lifetime. I'm too old for this shit.”

“Is he okay?” Jin asks “Is he breathing fine?”

“Yeah, he's-” Taehyung pauses “He'll be fine once we get home.”

“Okay, I'm driving you.” Yoongi says “Let's get the fuck away from here. This club sucked ass anyways.”

Namjoon just sighs, muttering something between gritted teeth that sounds a lot like “then next time you pick the place”.



When they're finally home it's almost four in the morning and Jungkook just kind of wants to brush his teeth and sleep for three days.

“I'm sleeping here with you, 's that okay?” Taehyung asks him as Jungkook makes his way to the bathroom.

“Yeah, I was gonna ask you anyway.” Jungkook replies, then gestures to his room “You can wear something of mine.”

Jungkook quickly gets washed up, gets the vile aftertaste of vomit off his mouth and he drags his sorry ass to his room. He's not sure of what happened back there at the club, if it was some sort of panic attacks or just simple fucking panic, but he knows he feels terrible and that he just wants to lay down.

He gets in his room, closes the door and finds Taehyung already on his bed, wearing one of his white shirts and- well, nothing else apart from his boxer briefs. Hell, Tae usually sleeps naked or in one of his robes, Jungkook's surprised he actually put on clothes.

He gets one random t-shirt and a pair of sweats, quickly gets them on and then drops on the mattress, a long sigh leaving his chest as he climbs up to the pillows.

“I wanna be the big spoon.” Jungkook mutters when his head hits the cushion, Taehyung hums and gets closer to him, easily tucks his face under Jungkook's chin and brings Jungkook's arms around his waist so that he can hold him.

“How's your lip?”

“It hurts.” Taehyung whines “What was I even thinking, I don't even have muscles in my arms.”

“No, you do have muscles, everyone has them.”

“Well, I ain't a muscle pig like you, that's all.”

“Then why the fuck did you punch the guy?”

Taehyung scoffs and Jungkook holds him a bit tighter, closing his eyes “Piece of shit got his hands on you, it was fucking disgusting to watch.”

“Next time, hit the gym before you decide to go full Fight Club on someone's ass.”

Taehyung chuckles “Fine, I will.”

Jungkook thinks that maybe the conversation is over, so he twists his body to reach the bedside lamp and turns it off, the room going dark. He gets back to his comfortable position, Taehyung's warmth already lulling him to sleep.

“Jungkook, what happened to you back there?”

And nevermind.

“Don't know. Couldn't breathe.”

“Yeah, no shit.”

“I don't know, Tae. Adrenaline? Panic? I don't know, it was a stressful moment, sue me.”

“I'm not fucking scolding you, I was worried to death you dipshit.” Taehyung mumbles, sounding a little defensive “Just- I don't think it was just that.”

Jungkook opens his eyes, meeting only darkness and some rays of moonlight creeping through the curtains.

“I don't know what I'm doing anymore.” Jungkook finally says “I go to college, but for what? I don't like what I'm doing there, it feels like a prison. I'm not even studying these days, I just take photos of you and things I like.”

“You should just drop college. Stop doing something you hate, it fucks you up.”

“Every time I'm alone it feels hollow.”

Taehyung stays quiet for a few seconds “Hollow.”

“In my chest. Or my head? I don't know. I've just been ignoring it lately, it was always buzzing in the back of my head.”

“Shit, Jungkook, why don't you tell me this shit?”

Jungkook shrugs “You have it worse than me.”

“What does that even mean?”

“I saw the drugs.”

Taehyung freezes and, shit, that hurts. It hurts to feel him so fucking uncomfortable and tense in his arms, so Jungkook nuzzles the crown of his head “It's okay, don't- I'm sorry, it wasn't on purpose, I just opened the wrong cabinet.”

Taehyung still doesn't say anything but he presses his face harder on his chest “It's fine.”

“It's not.”

“Okay, I need you to listen to me right now.” Taehyung pulls back and Jungkook can kind of make out his features in the dark, his gaze intense “I've been like this for a lot. For years. Okay? I've been a little fucked up for a long fucking time, I can take care of myself. I take my meds, I eat my veggies, take a shower every day and take a walk when I have time, I have a therapist, all of that shit.”

“You have a therapist?”

“Yeah, every Wednesday, ten A.M. to eleven A.M.”

Jungkook is usually in the middle of his classes at that time.

“Had a therapist back in Paris, have a therapist here now. So I know how to deal with this, I don't need you to ignore your fucking problems because I have it worse. I don't have it worse!”

Jungkook arches an eyebrow.

“Okay, maybe- no, shit, shush.” Taehyung takes a deep breath “We're not competing for who has it worse. You have shit to worry about and I have mine but you can't just pretend not to feel like shit because you're worried about me. We're supposed to be here for each other.”

“I just want you to be okay, Tae.”

Taehyung gives him a look that feels a lot like sympathy.

“Yeah, well,” Taehyung smiles “I want you to be okay as well. And I don't want you to end up like me.”

“What do you-”

“I mean that from now on you start telling me if you feel shitty without worrying about me but worrying about yourself first. You're lonely, I get it, we've both been over this. But you just started feeling lonely and I can help you overcome that feeling. God knows you're helping me do the same.”

Jungkook bites the inside of his cheek and looks at Taehyung for a few moments “And the rest?”

“I pay a stranger to listen to me every week and I pay a whole pharmaceutical empire to deal with the rest. Let them do their job.” Taehyung drops a small kiss on the corner of his mouth before he hides his face again against his chest “We think about taking care of each other.”




Jungkook isn't a fan of phone calls. Call him a wuss, but he has a trauma. He was nine, he called the pizza restaurant to order food for all his friends who stayed at his place for a sleepover and he accidentally told the guy who was taking his order that he loved him. Stuff like that scars people.

This particular phone call feels awfully terrifying. But he still presses the call button and holds his breath as he waits for the call to be taken.

“Honey!”

Jungkook smiles “Hey, mum.”

“It's good to hear from you.” she pauses “For once.”

“Sorry, I've been busy.”

“College is hard, mmh?”

Jungkook swallows “Yeah. Am I bothering you, are you busy?”

“Oh, Jungkook, honey, you never bother me.” he hears some keys rustling so, yeah, he's probably bothering her “I was about to leave for some groceries, but nothing urgent. How is Jimin? Is he doing okay?”

“He is, I'll tell him you asked of him, he will gloat like an idiot and tell me you like him more than you like me.”

“I do like him more than you.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes “Thanks. How's dad doing?”

His mother laughs, Jungkook finds himself smiling “Oh, since you left he actually picked up a hobby.”

“No way.”

“Bonsais.”

“Oh my God, this is terrible.”

“I have a whole forest of tiny trees in my house. It's bad.”

Jungkook snorts, his mother laughing on the other side of the phone. He can almost see her doing that in his mind and, okay, maybe he misses her, sue him.

“Why did you call me? 'Cause I know you, you must have something to tell me.”

She's always been like this. Straight to the point, no time for bullshit.

“Yeah.” Jungkook clears his throat, fidgeting with the pillow he's been squeezing on his lap “Yeah, I- Shit, okay.”

“Language.”

“I'm dropping off college.” he blurts out “I don't- it's not what I want, I hate it, I- hate is a big word, but it doesn't make me happy and I don't wanna keep doing something that doesn't make me happy, it's not fair.”

Silence.

“And if you're going to cut my funds, well, I get it. You're paying for this place just so that I can study, so I'll get a job and find a cheaper flat. You don't need to worry about me, seriously, I'll do fine and-”

“Do you have a plan B?” she asks, voice relaxed and pleasant “I get it, you don't like your major, nothing we can do about that. So, do you have a plan B?”

Jungkook manages a sigh of relief. His mother isn't disappointed nor mad, that's a whole fucking blessing to him.

“I do.”

“Okay.” she pauses “Tell me, what is your plan B?”

“Okay, it's not exactly a plan B.”

“Jungkook.”

“I have a passion.” Jungkook says, quiet “I have a passion and I have a muse.”

There's silence again, Jungkook can hear his mother's slow breathing, then “Good. I'm glad you do.”

“You are?”

“What passion?”

Jungkook swallows “I got my hands on a camera again.”

“Oh! You did?” she sounds like she's smiling “Okay, good. And your muse?”

“He's a whole fucking mess.”

“Oh, dear!” she laughs and Jungkook could actually cry “Well, you made up your mind. You're an adult, I can't stop you! And I don't want to, either. All I can do is wishing you good luck.”

“Thank you.”

“And both your father and I will keep supporting you.”

“You really don't have to, mum, I will seriously find another place.”

“Stay there, the house is paid for a whole year. Then you do what you want. As you always do.”

“I'm a terrible son.”

“You're a wonderful son. Just impulsive, but you got that from me so I can only blame myself.” his mother laughs again “You'll do just fine, Jungkook. I know you will.”

Jungkook believes her.




“I can't believe I'm being dragged out of my home at dawn.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes as they leave the condo “It's not dawn, it's already six in the morning.”

Already.” Taehyung sighs, tucks his plaid beige shirt in his pants “As if it's late. Boy oh boy! It's already six in the morning! I wasted so much time!”

“I wanna try and take photos of you in this light.”

“Yeah, I heard you the first time you said that and all the others, too.” Taehyung opens the front gate and they both venture into the street.

It's a Sunday, not a soul to be seen, no sounds of cars, most of the lights in the houses are still off. Jungkook feels oddly at peace, knowing that they're mostly alone, that even a city like Seoul can be asleep when they aren't.

“I didn't even take a shower.” Taehyung grumbles and he ruffles his hair.

Jungkook ignores him and starts snapping some shots, just to try it out, see how the light reflects on the lampposts.

“I'll let you pose.”

Taehyung's whines stop “Really?”

“Yeah. Just, keep it simple, I still wanna have a natural feeling to it.” Jungkook gestures at the empty road “Go on, take a walk or whatever.”

“Take a walk or whatever.” Taehyung snickers as he starts walking ahead of Jungkook, who puts the camera close to his eye and starts looking at Taehyung through the viewfinder “Real professional photographer, telling the model to do whatever.”

“You're not a model.”

“I could be.” Taehyung says, turning around to face Jungkook and walking backward “Vogue would be lucky to have me.”

“Why have Vogue when you have me?”

Taehyung tilts his head a bit and Jungkook takes a photo “You don't pay me like Vogue would.”

“Would Vogue fuck you like I do?”

Taehyung snorts, turning serious after a cough “I don't want Vogue to fuck me, thank you very much.”

Jungkook tilts the camera to the right, to get a better angle and Taehyung presses the back of his hand on his forehead, the sleeve covering his head, Jungkook snaps another shot.

“These buttons are a mess.” Taehyung grumbles, still kind of sleepy, Jungkook will remember to buy him coffee later.

Taehyung looks down at his hands and start redoing the buttons of shirts “I did them all wrong because you woke me up at dawn.”

“Not dawn.” Jungkook says, but he still manages to steal another photo.

“It's dawn in my head.” Taehyung starts walking backward again “I want breakfast.”

Jungkook actually looks away from the viewfinder to glare at Taehyung “You never fucking have breakfast and today you want breakfast? Forreal?”

“Buy me Starbucks later. You can take pictures of me drinking over-priced coffee.”

“I will, now shush and get back to work.”

Taehyung rolls his eyes but he does follow Jungkook's instructions. Jungkook is always a bit impressed by how comfortable Taehyung is even with a camera on him, confident in his skin and posing with the same ease a professional model would have. Really, at this point taking picture of him is a pleasure, especially when he keeps his mouth shut.

Taehyung does give him some good poses, Jungkook feels it the moment the shutter releases that he's taking good photos, especially when Taehyung shows his profile, head up and lightly bites the sleeves of his sleeves, slender fingers barely peeking out the huge sweater paws.

Most of the photos, though, they just end up blurry and shaky because they're both laughing their asses off. But he likes those the best.

“Okay, here's the plan. We go eat something-”

“Starbucks!” Taehyung exclaims, running back to him as Jungkook puts the camera back in its case, hanging from his neck.

“Then we go to your place? You said something about work.”

“Sounds like a plan.” Taehyung plants a quick kiss on his mouth, leaving Jungkook blinking dumbly “What?”

“Wasn't expecting that.”

“You didn't give me my morning kiss today.” Taehyung says “I'm taking it now, it's still morning. I like my morning kisses.”

“Okay.” Jungkook chuckles and shakes his head “Sorry I forgot.”

“When we go back home we should just kiss a lot.”

“That's so fucking cheesy, especially coming from you.”

Taehyung pouts at him whilst they start walking to the nearest Starbucks, it's not so far from their condo, a fifteen minutes walk.

“I like kissing. Sometimes I like kissing more than having sex.”

“Fine, we'll just have a make-out session when we get back home.”

“Sounds like my favorite kind of Sunday.”



So three hours later and Taehyung still tastes of Cappuccinos and Cinnamon Rolls, his hair a tangled mess because Jungkook has been carding his hand through it the whole time, all warm and soft against him, arms wrapped around his neck. Jungkook isn't even sure for how long they've been kissing but he doesn't even care. It's slow and deep, Taehyung's lips swollen and red, he's wearing only that huge plaid shirt and Jungkook feels so fucking peaceful right now.

Still, he has to break the kiss to take a breath. He closes his eyes, sighs deeply, feels a smile stretching his lips. When he opens his eyes he has Taehyung's smiling at him with half of his face pressed on the pillow.

“What?”

“Mmh.” Taehyung brushes his nose on Jungkook and giggles “Nothing.”

“Shit, what are you being so cute for?” Jungkook groans “I can't handle you being cute.”

“You're blushing, that's even cuter.”

“Not blushing.”

“You actually blush a lot, tough guy.” Taehyung stirs his neck “I feel all sorts of needy and soft today, ain't you happy?”

“You're a handful when you're needy, so no.”

“As if you're any better.”

“Actually, I kinda need to tell you something.”

“Oh.” Taehyung frowns “Is it bad?”

“No, it's good. Shit, I hope it's good.” Jungkook pushes away some hair from Taehyung's eye “I dropped off college.”

Taehyung's eyes widen “Wow. Okay. Is that really good news though?”

“And I want to do it.”

“Do it?”

“The exhibition. With you. I wanna do it.”

Taehyung stares at him for maybe even an entire minute without even blinking until, finally, he breaks into a huge smile, eyes bright and a pretty flush to his cheeks “You will?”

“I'll try to.”

“You actually will do it. With me. Like, you just left college and you'll take photos and then you'll do this with me?”

Jungkook nods with a grin “Yeah, I'll do this with you.”

“Yes!” Taehyung yells, Jungkook startles “Yes baby, we're about to make history!”

“I wouldn't go as far a-”

“History!” Taehyung presses his lips against Jungkook's briefly “History, I say!”

“Okay, I got it, we'll make history, noted.” Jungkook chuckles and Taehyung keeps smiling too wide and too bright until he kisses him again.

Jungkook sighs into the kiss, Taehyung takes his hands and guides them to his hips, humming satisfied when Jungkook starts stroking them.

He's not sure exactly of when it happens but he knows that the mood changes pretty quickly. First he's kissing Taehyung slowly and lazily, then he's hovering above him, licking into his mouth as the other one tugs at his shirt, grinding against his leg, breathy noises stuck in his throat.

“Celebratory sex.” Taehyung says as he breaks the kiss, giggling a little “They say it's better than angry sex.”

“Yeah?” Jungkook gets his hands on Taehyung's back and down to his buttocks “Good to know.”

Taehyung keeps rubbing his hardening cock against his leg, breathing hitching when Jungkook gets his mouth on his neck and gives his ass a firm squeeze.

“-low.”

“Mmmh?” Jungkook bites gently the skin “Didn't get that?”

“I want it slow.”

Jungkook all but freezes. He looks at Taehyung, who's just gazing at him with glossy eyes and parted lips.

“Slow?”

“Yeah. Fuck me slowly.” Taehyung says, smiling a little “I want it slow.”

Jungkook knows what Taehyung likes because Taehyung always asks for what he wants. Taehyung likes it rough, hard enough to hurt, he wants it fast and hungry, with bruises on his skin and bites on his lips. Taehyung doesn't ask for slow, he never does.

So now that he has, Jungkook feels like it sounds a lot like a “I trust you enough not to break my heart in the process”.

“Slow.” Jungkook whispers “I can do slow.”



There's something particularly addicting to have him like this. It's always been addicting, really, like a really strong drug. This feels more like drinking a good liquor, warm and buzzing under the skin, like fire lapping at his skin without ever burning him, so different from the usual scorching heat he's so used to.

For some reason he can't stop kissing Taehyung as he opens him up with his fingers, drinking in every gasp and deep moan, Taehyung with his legs shaking around his hips. Jungkook sucks on his bottom lip as he crooks his fingers, Taehyung's hips faltering and a choked sound leaving his lips.

“I'm- I'm ready, come on.” Taehyung slurs, eyes closed.

Jungkook knows he's ready, he's been for a while now, but this is the first time he gets to take his time, to rile him up and have him shaking before he really starts fucking him and he's loving it.

“You're the one who wanted it slow.”

Taehyung laughs a little “This isn't being slow, this is being an asshole.”

Jungkook bites off a smile and just kisses him, working his fingers in and out, Taehyung clenching around them and whimpering. He knows he's being an asshole, but Taehyung is so fucking gorgoeus like this, so pliant and soft and flushed, his cock hard and precome leaking on his stomach, back arched on the mattress.

“Please.” Taehyung moans “Please, I need it.”

“Okay, yeah.” Jungkook pulls out his fingers and squeezes some more lube on his hand, he drops the bottle back on the bed and then gives his cock a few strokes before lining himself with Taehyung.

He slides inside in one very slow motion, Taehyung keeps looking him in the eyes, gasping and then moaning once he bottoms out.

“That's my pretty boy.” Taehyung says, fingers digging in his back, his voice full of mirth because, even when he wants it slow, Taehyung will just try and wreck him with words alone.

And Jungkook knows it. He loves it.

Taehyung's words soon turn into nothing but small sounds and slurred praises as Jungkook fucks into him slow and deep, making sure that Taehyung feels every drag of his cock, kissing his neck and shoulder without sucking, no bruises this time, he just wants to taste his skin.

Every time he wants to go faster, to just slam his hips and fuck him harder, Jungkook actually slows down even more, shuddering at the wrecked sound of his name when Taehyung calls it.

“My-” Taehyung licks his lips “My name-”

Jungkook pushes away damp hair from his forehead and leans down, his lips grazing Taehyung's.

“Tae.” he murmurs, he feels him clenching around his cock “Taehyung.”

“Fuck, I'm so close.” Taehyung whines, his hand goes to his dick and he starts stroking himself “I feel so good.”

“Not lonely?”

He doesn't know why he asks that, the words just slip past his mouth and he regrets them but Taehyung smiles.

“You make it real hard for me to fuh-feel lonely.” Taehyung pushes his hips back on Jungkook's cock, tightening around him “What am I?”

“My muse.” Jungkook replies immediately, even though there's so much more to Taehyung than just that “You're my muse.”

“Yeah.” Taehyung moans, fucks himself on Jungkook's dick a bit faster “Your only muse?”

“My only muse.”

Taehyung shuts his eyes closed and cums, barely making any noise, just shaking and gasping. Jungkook keeps moving, going faster this time, chasing the heat that has his insides churning, completely drunk with Taehyung's smell and warmth.

“Cum for hyung, pretty.” Taehyung whimpers, maybe too sensitive but still clenching around him “Cum inside hyung.”

Fuck.” Jungkook stills and groans as he spills inside Taehyung, the other humming and relaxing beneath him, his legs slipping off Jungkook's hips.

Taehyung leaves a kiss on his lips before Jungkook pulls out and drops next to him, catching his breath.

“I liked that,” Taehyung whispers “So much.”

Jungkook smiles “So now you like it slow?”

“If it's you I think I'll like pretty much everything.” he chuckles, Jungkook feels him rolling on his side.

“I'll grab a towel or something, you made a mess.”

“You're right, just me, you're totally innocent.”

“Shush.”




Jungkook is pretty sure he's about to fall asleep, with Taehyung still wrapped around him like some sort of koala when he feels fingertips brushing on his nose. He opens his eyes and frowns.

“What are you doing?”

Taehyung shushes him, eyes closed and lips parted, his fingers moving from his nose up to his brows, tracing them with care, down to his cheekbones.

“Tae?”

“I'm memorizing your face.”

“Your eyes don't work anymore?”

“You need to touch something to really remember it. I wanna try and make a sculpture.”

Jungkook's eyes widen “Come again?”

“Don't sound so surprised, I'm an artist, it's what I do.”

“You wanna make a sculpture out of my face?”

“I wanna try. There's a difference.”

“Why?”

“Pretty face deserves a pretty sculpture. Maybe with bronze, I'm good at working with bronze.” Taehyung traces his cupid bow, then cups his face and his fingers slide along his jaw “What, you're the only one allowed to make art with someone's face?”

Jungkook scoffs “That's-”

“It's not different at all.” Taehyung pulls away his hands and hums “All right, I'm done, I'm sleepy now. Nap.”

Hell no. Jungkook manages to slip free of Taehyung's death grip, he ignores the other's whines and gets off the bed, walking fast to the living room where he knows he left his camera. He sees Emilie on the couch, the cat seems to be kind of judging him for his nudity but that cat probably judges him even when he eats. He gets the camera and goes back to the bed.

It's only the early afternoon, a nice light creeping through the curtains and falling perfectly on Taehyung's body, creating beautiful shadows on the sheets and on his face.

“Look at me.”

Taehyung opens his eyes and Jungkook takes a photo.

“Are you serious?” Taehyung groans, pulling the sheets up to his mouth.

“You said I could take a photo of you after sex.”

“Just give a guy a warning.”

“To have you posing like you're in a Playboy's magazine?” Jungkook puts the camera on the bedside table and gets back under the sheets “I don't think so.”

“Whatever, just get here, I'm cold.”

Jungkook just sighs and lets Taehyung wrap himself around him again “I can't believe I have to feel like some sort of human pillow everytime we sleep together.”

Taehyung giggles, sounding a little too satisfied with himself, then the giggle turns into a full laugh and Jungkook chuckles along.

“Why are we laughing?”

“I duh-don't know.” Taehyung snorts “I- I just like you so fucking much.”

“You already said that.”

“I do, though!” Taehyung drops a kiss on his cheek and gets back at nuzzling his chest “I like you so fucking much, Jungkook.”

And Jungkook is fine with that.

He can wait.

 

 


 

 

Jimin has this thing that really doesn't work in his favor when he has news: he's shit at being discreet.

If he's happy the whole fucking world will know, he's all huge smiles and excited giggles, he fidgets with his phone, buzzes on his seat until he finally drops whatever it is that has to be dropped.

So of course, they're in the usual coffee shop, Jungkook is munching on a sandwich and Jimin hasn't touched his food, just kept smiling and tapping his foot.

“Okay, shit.” Jungkook drops his sandwich on the plate “What do you have to tell me?”

“Me?”

“No, Obama. Yes, you.”

“Is it that obvious?”

“I don't know, ask that waitress.”

Jimin makes it to slap him on the head but his arms are too short, so he misses and he pouts, falling back on his seat “Don't be a smartass to your hyung.”

“Just tell me.”

“I'm in.”

Jungkook frowns “A bit more specific, I'm not Yoongi, I can't read your mind.”

“I got in the Studio. I passed the audition.”

Two seconds go by before Jungkook promptly chokes on his spit and Jimin's smile turns into a smirk.

“Now that's a reaction. Yoongi just said I knew you would have babe and then ate my ass. I mean, not that I didn't appreciate it, but-”

“Stop talking about Yoongi-hyung eating your ass.” Jungkook croaks “Shit. Congratulations?”

“Why are you making it a question?”

“I'm just- not surprised, of course you got it, I'm just happy!”

“Yeah, I'm happy too.” Jimin smiles and his eyes disappear “Taehyung yelled in my ear for an hour when I told him on the phone.”

Jungkook pouts “You told him before me?”

“Of fucking course? He's my soulmate.”

“Right, sorry, forgot.” Jungkook smiles “I'm happy for you, hyung. Here, wait.” Jungkook fishes in his bag and gets his camera out.

“Oh, hell no.”

“Come on! To remember the moment.”

“No, I-”

“Hyung, shut up and let me take a photo of you.”

Jimin sighs but he gives him a small smile when Jungkook points the camera at him. Jimin makes a v-sign next to his cheek and Jungkook takes the photo.

“There, now I can sell it to Yoongi and get some money.”

“You're a fucking asshole, don't take advantage of my boyfriend's weaknesses.”


 

 


 



Jungkook drops his stuff on the couch and finds out immediately that life is, once more, testing him. On one side, he really needs a shower. He had the brilliant idea of taking the subway to come back home from his day out with Namjoon and Hoseok and it was packed, so much that Jungkook honestly thought he was about to start a full polymerization process with the three people cornering him. He could actually treat himself for once, get a bath and use one of the expensive bath-bombs Yoongi got him for his last birthday.

On the other hand, he wouldn't mind cuddles. Taehyung is fucking him up because he swears he wasn't even into cuddling that much before they met. Then again, usually at this time of the evening Taehyung is neck deep into his work, so maybe he has time for a nice bath.

As he's made up his mind, Jungkook hears a scratching sound that makes him freeze on the spot. The noise stops only for a second before it starts again, Jungkook frowns and looks around the room. He sure as hell knows there aren't mice in this condo, so the next most logical solution to this noise is only one: it's a ghost. He's haunted. Great. Where's his non-existent sage when he needs it?

As the scratching gets more insistent and louder it also becomes easier for Jungkook to locate its source, it's coming from the balcony. Jungkook walks to it and finally notices Emilie, standing on her hind feet, paws against the glass of the door with her claws out, aggressively scratching the material.

Jungkook opens the door and the cat meowls, paws patting on Jungkook's feet.

“What's up with you?” Jungkook whispers, surprised by the cat's behavior, Emilie just meowls loudly again.

Did Taehyung give her the dry food again? Sure, she does get pissy when he feeds her that, but it's the first time Emilie gets on his balcony and demands attention from him.

The cat suddenly turns around and walks away, Jungkook steps on the balcony as Emilie swiftly squishes herself in between the iron rods of the dividing railing. That's when Jungkook sees Taehyung sitting on his side of the balcony, in the furthest corner, legs close to his chest, head hidden between them and arms wrapped around his knees.

Jungkook actually feels a shiver running up his spine. Taehyung looks small. Taehyung is a lot of things, but not small, he always keeps his head up and carries himself with the knowledge that, if he wanted to, he could have the whole world at his feet.

But now he looks small.

“Tae?” Jungkook calls, already climbing over the railing, finding himself on the other side of the balcony “Hey, are you okay?”

He sees some cigarette butts and ash on the ground, next to his feet, his phone as well is just thrown there.

Jungkook crouches next to him “Taehyung?” he tries again “Hey, look at me, what's wrong?”

He can see goosebumps rising on Taehyung's arms, the robe he's wearing doing a very poor job at protecting him from the chill october evening air.

Finally, Taehyung raises his head and all Jungkook can see are dry tears, bloodshot eyes and angry red marks around his eyes and on his cheeks, as if he's been rubbing them hard enough to draw blood to the surface.

Taehyung looks at him with vacant eyes and he looks like he's about to say something, but his mouth opens without any sound coming out of it before closing again.

“Jesus, Tae.” Jungkook cups his face and Taehyung sighs, leaning into the touch “What happened? Do you want to get up?”

“I can't turn it off.” Taehyung says, his voice hoarse and weak. Has he been screaming?

“Turn off what?”

Suddenly Taehyung's phone starts buzzing and Jungkook has barely time to let himself be startled by it before Taehyung is screaming.

Make it stop!” he shouts, loud enough for his voice to crack and for Jungkook to flinch away from him and stare in shock as tears spill from Taehyung's eyes and rage colors his cheeks “I can't fucking stand this anymore, muh-make it stop!”

Jungkook frowns, following Taehyung's gaze and taking notice of the buzzing phone and finally it clicks. Jungkook grabs it and quickly answer the calls, an unknown number appearing on the screen.

“Hel-”

Tu en as mis du temps.”

Jungkook stays quiet, the words sounding like gibberish to him.

“Who's this?” he asks, there's silence for a while.

Taehyung sobs and Jungkook finds his hand, giving it a squeeze.

“Who is this?” he asks again.

Taehyung?” the man on the phone pronounces the name with a weird accent, but he keeps on speaking in Korean, every word colored with accent “Taehyung, is this you?

Jungkook sends Taehyung a look and he finds him fucking choking on his sobs, angrily wiping the tears away.

“No.” Jungkook replies, holds Taehyung's hand a bit harder.

Another pause “Can I talk to him?

“No.”

He's not there? Why do you have his-

“He's here but no, you're not talking with him. Don't call again.”

Jungkook ends the call and turns off that fucking phone, because maybe Taehyung can't but he sure as hell can.

“Hey, it's done.” Jungkook tries very hard to keep his voice steady even when his hands are shaking that much “He's not calling again.”

Taehyung is still crying but he manages to tug his hand, pulling him forward.

“It's okay, come here.” Jungkook manages to maneuver Tae so that he's at least on his knees and he hugs him, Taehyung wraps his arms around his shoulders and he keeps sobbing in the crook of his neck “Fuck- Tae, stop crying, he's not gonna call you again, I swear.”

“He will.” Taehyung whispers “He'll call again, he- he always cuh-calls again.”

Jungkook swallows down a wave of panic and presses a kiss on Taehyung's temple “No, I turned off your phone.”

Taehyung turns into a stone in his arms, stiff and holding his breath “What? You did what?”

“I turned it off.”

Fuck.” Taehyung breaks the hug and stares at him with wide eyes and a look that Jungkook has only seen on the stray dogs that hide behind bins in corners of the street “No, you- he hates it when I turn it off, I have to- he's gonna get mad.”

“Tae, listen to me. Hey!” Jungkook grips his wrists and shakes him “He's not here!”

Maybe it's because he raised his voice, but Taehyung just cries harder. Jungkook hisses a curse under his breath and holds him again.

This isn't good. He knows it isn't. Jungkook may be naive but he's not a complete idiot yet, and he has a vague idea of what the fuck is happening right now.

“I have to turn it on.” Taehyung whines and tries to push him away but when he fails another wave of sobs wreck through his body “Jungkook, please!”

“It's okay, no one will be mad.” Jungkook talks very slowly in the crown of Taehyung's head “You did nothing wrong, I'm the one who turned it off, not you. No one will be angry with you and he's not gonna call again and if he will I will answer for you, ok? You're- you're safe here.”

Taehyung's crying seems to slow down, his whole body melting against Jungkook's.

“You're good, Tae. You're so good, you did nothing wrong.”

“I'm-” Taehyung hiccups “I'm good?”

“Of course you are. You're amazing, yeah? You're a great artist, everything you paint is just so you, even the colors change their hues to suit you better. And-” the more Jungkook speaks the more it seems like Taehyung relaxes so he keeps it going “And you're gorgeous, you're kind, your cat adores you, everyone fucking adores you.”

“Do you?” Taehyung asks, pressing his forehead on the slope of his shoulder “Do you adore me?”

Jungkook strokes the nape of his neck, kisses the shell of his ear “I love you.”

Taehyung stays quiet after that, his breathing slowing down, his sobs fading into something less angry. Jungkook kind of wants to bring him inside, he doesn't know for how long Taehyung has been sitting on this fucking balcony but his body is cold and he's not even trying to keep himself up on his knees, if it weren't for the firm hold Jungkook has on his hips Taehyung would just flop down on the ground again.

“Say it again.”

Jungkook lets out a breath of relief “I love you. You're my muse and I love you.”

Taehyung takes a deep breath, sniffles “'m tired.”

“You wanna go inside?”

“Please.”

“Yeah, okay.”

Jungkook grabs Taehyung's legs, makes sure that his arms are still well wrapped around his shoulders and then he stands up, groaning at the dead weight in his arms but he still gets in Taehyung's flat and carries him to the bedroom.

“Me, too.” Taehyung whispers “Love you, too.”

Jungkook clenches his jaw “You don't have to say it back.”

“I know.”

“Okay.” Jungkook doesn't believe words said when someone is drunk, nor when someone is too happy and especially not when someone has just now stopped crying like he was gonna die.

So, yeah. Okay.

He tries to lay Taehyung down on the bed but the other doesn't let go of him, mumbles something under his breath, so Jungkook just drops on the mattress with him, Taehyung is quick to wrap himself around his body and he buries his face in the usual spot, between neck and shoulder. He breathes in deeply and falls asleep quickly, drained and exhausted.

Jungkook, though, he stays awake. To make sure that if Taehyung needs something he can give it to him and because he's terrified of closing his eyes.

He cards his fingers through Taehyung's hair, a tangled mess of grey locks, makes sure to stroke the small of his back because Tae likes that, presses his lips to his forehead.

Jungkook is not a complete idiot yet. He might not know what it was that had Taehyung running back to Seoul with loneliness carving a hole in his chest, but he does know who is the cause of it.

 

Chapter Text



But I guess that's love

I can't pretend











Here's the thing about fear that Jungkook wishes someone had warned him about: it's not a scary dark hole like people seem to enjoy talking about it.

Fear looks a lot more like a spiral. Not even that dark, truly. Just a spiral.

Jungkook wishes fear was a scary dark hole.

Once you fall in the scary dark hole there's not much you can do, after all, you just keep falling and falling with the single reassurance that, at some point, you will hit the ground.

Instead, it's a spiral. You walk in it, following the lines, not really noticing how deep into it you are because it is oh, so slow. But once you do notice, you're already too far gone, deep inside this spiral that doesn't really seem to end, it just tightens.

Almost like a fucking rope around his neck.





Jungkook wakes up to a very cold and empty bed and he curses himself for even having fallen asleep. He gets on his feet and immediately leaves Taehyung's bedroom, heart racing in his chest as the rope tightens.

It's not until he smells coffee that he finally lets out a breath of relief and the rope is a bit looser. He walks to the kitchen and stops on the threshold, looking at Taehyung.

He's pouring coffee into two mugs, lips set in a firm line, hair falling messily over his eyes. Jungkook has a feeling that Taehyung makes breakfast only when he's upset.

“Morning.”

Jungkook startles, surprised by Taehyung's voice. “Hey.”

“We slept way too fucking much. You know what time it is?” Taehyung takes the mugs and puts them on the kitchen island, sits on one of the stools and Jungkook walks inside, he takes his usual place on the stool opposite to Tae's.

“No.”

“Almost noon.”

Jungkook cradles his cup of coffee. “Well, shit.”

“I have work to do, an entire morning wasted.” Taehyung's thumb keeps flicking on the handle of the mug, his free arm curled around his stomach, he looks at his lap without raising his eyes.

“Sorry, forgot to put an alarm.”

“Not your fault.”

Jungkook hums and he takes a sip of coffee, a bit too bitter for his taste but it does help him to wake up completely as he downs it, feeling it warm in his stomach.

“Wanna go out for dinner tonight?” Taehyung asks, he's still not looking at him. “I'm feeling like eating burgers. I'm craving Burger King.”

“We can go tonight.” Jungkook swallows. “And then we can go to that Ice Cream place you like.”

“Cool.”

Emilie walks in, slowly walking up to Taehyung's stool and sitting there, her tail neatly curled over her paws as she blinks at Jungkook.

“Tae.”

“Mmh?”

Jungkook heaves a sigh. “Please, look at me.”

Taehyung stays still for a while, his thumb doesn't stop flicking against the handle, his arm a bit tighter around his stomach but then, finally, he looks up.

Jungkook feels his jaw clenching a bit at the sheer exhaustion that has Taehyung's skin look less like gold and more like ash, his eyes still red and bruised around after he rubbed the skin so angrily.

“Taehyung-”

“I don't-” Taehyung breathes. “I don't want to talk about it.”

“I'm not asking you to.”

“I'm sorry. I really am.”

Jungkook frowns. “For what?”

“Yesterday.”

It feels tense. It feels even forced and Jungkook doesn't want this, he really doesn't, if Taehyung isn't comfortable talking about what happened then they won't, but-

“Taehyung-”

“I'm fine.” Taehyung shrugs, his lips stretch for a second in what should look like a smile. “I'm over it. I don't know why I reacted like that.”

“Taehyung.”

“It's not that big of a deal? I was just surprised, so.”

“Taehyung, stop.”

Taehyung frowns, he shifts in his seat, his arm tightens around his stomach. “Stop what?”

“Stop making yourself look smaller.”

Taehyung's eyes widen a little, he opens his mouth to say something, he closes it again and his arm is still so fucking tight around his stomach, his shoulders hunched and head barely raised and Jungkook can't have this.

“You're a lot of things, but not small. Not in front of me, not in front of anyone.” Jungkook says. “So, please, stop trying to make it look like you're not here.”

Taehyung looks at him for a few seconds before his lips quiver and his eyes well up again.

“Shit, don't cry.” Jungkook gets off the stool and quickly walks around the counter.

“I hate this.” Taehyung whispers, he wipes off a tear as soon as it falls. “I fucking hate this.”

Jungkook puts his hand on the nape of Taehyung's neck, squeezing it gently and stroking it with his thumb, Taehyung lets out a shaking breath and rests his head on Jungkook's chest, his shoulders straightening up a little.

“I feel so fucking bad for yesterday.” he says. “I mean it, I didn't want you to find me.”

“Which is bullshit, you should have given me a call. I wouldn't have asked you questions, you know?”

“Yeah. But,” Taehyung closes his eyes. “I don't know, Kook. I really don't know why I didn't call you.”

Jungkook hums. “It's okay.”

“I'm afraid of turning on my phone.” Taehyung says. “I'm shitting myself thinking about it.”

“Then leave it off.”

“No, I have a client who told me he was gonna call to check in, see how the commission is going.” a pause. “I don't want to turn it on.”

“Okay, listen,” Jungkook pulls back a little so that Taehyung will look at him. “You turn on the phone and if- I'll delete any missed call, texts, I'll just delete them. You won't even notice. And I'll block that number. You go take a shower now and I'll do these things, okay?”

Taehyung worries his bottom lip and in his eyes, Jungkook sees the same dread of yesterday night.

“Tae-”

“No, you're right.” Taehyung clears his throat and stands up from the stool. “I'm gonna get a bath, fuck the shower, I'll just soak in there until I become saké.”

“That's not how saké is made.”

“Whatever.” Taehyung makes it to leave but then stops, turns to Jungkook once more “Where's my good morning kiss?”

Jungkook manages a smile as he cups Taehyung's face and kisses him, letting the chaste peck linger a bit more than usual, when he pulls back Taehyung smiles at him, a bit brighter. “Thank you.”

“No, don't- don't thank me for this shit.” Jungkook shrugs. “You go, I'll take care of things.”

“Okay.”

Taehyung gives his wrist a squeeze then walks away, headed to the bathroom, leaving Jungkook alone in the kitchen with Emilie.

Jungkook looks at the cat for a while, Emilie blinks and yawns. “Thanks for yesterday.”

Emilie promptly stands up and leaves the kitchen.

“Why do I even bother?” Jungkook groans and then he heads to the bedroom where he knows he left the phone yesterday. He finds it on the bedside table and grabs it, he walks back to the living room and makes his way to the balcony, the door still open from yesterday night. He also spots on the couch a pack of half-full cigarettes and lighter, so he takes them both.

Once he's on the balcony alone, Jungkook closes the door and with a sigh, he turns on Taehyung's phone. He lights up a cigarette as he waits for the screen to light up and, once it does, it's immediately being flooded with notifications from missed calls and texts. All from the same number.

Jungkook clicks his tongue, takes a drag of smoke and starts deleting the texts first. He doesn't read them but a few words catch his eyes, all in French, he can't make anything out of them.

He starts deleting the calls, too, breathes out a lungful of smoke when he sees that this person has called almost all night, every ten fucking minutes. That the last missed call is from ten minutes ago as well. Jungkook arches an eyebrow and leans against the railing, flicks his thumb on the cigarette, ash falls and gets carried away by the morning breeze. Taehyung's phone starts buzzing, Jungkook immediately picks up.

“You're some sick bastard.” he says. “A stalker or some shit like that.”

There's silence on the other line for a few seconds, then “Is Taehyung there?”

“No.”

“Tell him I'm in Seoul.”

“I don't know who you are and I can only guess what you did, so no. No, I won't tell him you're in Seoul and you'll stay away from him. That's all.”

Jungkook ends the call before he can hear anything else from that man and quickly blocks the number. He sighs, deletes this call from the records of the phone as well, puts it in his pocket and keeps smoking his cigarette.

He's very aware that this won't fix things. Just because you put a mirror back together it doesn't mean that the cracks will disappear, but at least you can still see your reflection. That's what Jungkook has always thought about pain, trauma, hurt. You pick up the shards, put them back together to their original shape, keep living your life with cracks and all, even if they're out in the open for everyone to see.

He has a feeling that Taehyung thinks the same.

He throws the cigarette off the balcony and takes a deep breath, then walks back in the flat and to the bedroom, dropping on the mattress. The rope around his neck is tight but he can breathe just fine, so fuck it. He'll deal with his own panic later because Taehyung is right, they take care of each other, it's what they do. It doesn't mean that being selfless is out of the picture and Jungkook is not greedy nor selfish enough to have his own worries for Taehyung taking over.

Jungkook lets out a groan before he gets his own phone out of the back pocket of his jeans, he pales when he sees the battery is only at 5%, so he quickly opens Kakao and scrolls through the conversations until he finds the right one.



Jin-hyung, can we meet up?



Jungkook waits for a few seconds, nibbling on his bottom lip, then a reply pops up.



Seokjin-hyung

When? Is everything okay?



It's Tae



Seokjin-hyung

Tomorrow, around nine, I'll send you the address



Okay, thank you





He locks the phone and drops it next to him. A few minutes pass and he hears Taehyung walking in the room, the bed dips and then there's a warm body next to his, smelling of coconut.

“What happened to soaking until you become saké?”

“I realized that I'm not rice and I can't be fermented.” Taehyung replies, wet hair dampening the sheets. “I wouldn't mind saké right now.”

“It's noon.”

“Somewhere it's the middle of the night.”

“I never really understood this thing, you know? They always say it in movies but it doesn't make sense. So what if somewhere it's night, it's not night where we are. It's not like if we start drinking with the mindset of being in another timezone then drinking at noon becomes less pathetic or you'll get less drunk, so-”

“Jungkook, honey.” Taehyung sighs. “You're overthinking it.”

Jungkook grins. “We do that a lot.”

“Overthinking shit?”

“Mmh.”

“We should probably stop doing that at some point.” Taehyung sighs. “I really need to get to work but all I wanna do is just lie down here and maybe have you cuddle me.”

“I can do that.”

Taehyung slaps him on the chest weakly. “You should tell me to get to work, not humor me.”

“Your canvas won't run away if you work tomorrow instead of today. Take a day off. We stay in bed and maybe watch The Heirs and then I take you to Burger King.”

“Well, since you're so insistent.”

“Am I, though?” Jungkook chuckles, Taehyung basically climbs on top of him, easily curling around him, nosing at his neck and fitting so nicely against his body.

“You are, look at this, how am I supposed to stand up when you're holding me down.”

“I am not even touching you, you liar.”

There's a pause that follows, in which Taehyung takes a deep breath and strokes his arm.

“But you should.” he says. “You should touch me.”

Had someone who isn't really familiar with Taehyung heard these words, they would have just laughed and maybe touched Tae as he was asking. But Jungkook is, by now, familiar with most things that revolve around Taehyung.

He can tell when Taehyung's words hide a plead.

So he turns a bit on his side, wraps his arms around Taehyung's frame and strokes the nape of his neck, lips pressed on Taehyung's forehead as the other sighs, a hand resting on Jungkook's hip.

“I'm gonna fix this.” Jungkook says even if he's not sure as to why he said that or if he's even able to fix this when he has only the slightest idea of what this is.

But he still says those words because Taehyung needs them and he needs reassurance and, as of now, that's all Jungkook has to offer.

“It's not up to you to fix this.” Taehyung retorts weakly.

“I'll help you fix this, then.” Jungkook replies. “I'll help you fix everything.”

That seems to be enough for Taehyung, who takes a deep breath and relaxes in the hug.

Jungkook wishes it could be enough for him, too.



 


 



The address Jin sent him brought Jungkook to a small café hidden in a corner of a street in a part of Seoul that Jungkook has never visited before. It's quiet, the whole area is, a few cars sometimes drive down the main road but slowly, just a few people can be seen walking by, mostly old people with their grandchildren.

Jungkook walks inside the coffee shop, knowing he's a bit early, a bell rings above his head gently as he closes the door behind him. He quickly finds an empty table in the corner of the café, where there is a large oval couch with blue cushions. It's incredibly comfortable, so he settles there. It's not a big store, but there's nice music playing low, the lights warm and a delicious smell coming from the kitchen and from the pastries displayed at the counter. A girl approaches him.

“Can I get you anything?”

“I'm waiting for someone, so-”

“I'll be back when you'll be ready, then.” she smiles politely and goes back to the cash register, she smoothens down her apron and starts re-filling a jug of coffee.

Jungkook's phone buzzes in his pocket, he takes it and grins at the notification of a new text.



Tae



WHERE ARE YOU





I left you a note?





Tae



“I left you a note” HE SAYS

AS IF THE NOTE EXPLAINS??????





I LEGIT WROTE ON THAT NOTE I

HAVE A MEETING WITH A FRIEND WHAT

MORE DO YOU WANT???



I EVEN PUT A GODDAMN HEART AT THE END





Tae

Yeah dat was cute

STILL





????





Tae



MY GOODMORNING KISS ⁝(˚͈͈͈͈̥̆₍₎˚͈͈͈͈̥̆⁎)⁝





“Ah, shit.” Jungkook whispers to himself, quickly typing a reply.







I swear I kissed your cheek before

I left but you were sleeping





Tae



mmmmmmmmmMMMMMMM

Fine. Whatever.

( ب_ب )





Don't sulK VIA EMOJIS





Tae

I DO WHAT I WANT





I'LL KISS YOU WHEN I GET BACK

 



Tae

BUT IT WON'T BE A GOODMORNING KISS





Fine, goddammit, I'll eat you out





Tae

you're close to the path of forgiveness

catch u later





Jungkook smiles, shaking his head a little, and he pockets his phone after locking the screen. The door opens again, Jungkook spares it a glance and recognizes Seokjin as he walks in, a cap covering most of his eyes and a mouth mask hiding half of his face. He bows at the girl, she bows back with a smile, Jin looks around and spots Jungkook, so he walks to him.

“You picked my favorite table.” Jin says as he sits down on the couch, he then lowers his mask under his chin and smiles. “Hope you found the place okay.”

“I did. It's nice here, hyung.”

“It is. This is one of my favorite places when I need to rest for a while. The food is delicious.” Jin shrugs off his heavy coat, the days have been getting colder and colder. “I'll buy you breakfast.”

“Oh, you don't have to.”

“Please, I'm your hyung and I want to buy you breakfast.”

The girl comes back, smiling pleasantly to both of them. “Ready to order?”

“Yeah.” Jin replies. “I'll have the usual Cappuccino and- I've seen a chocolate cake?”

She nods. “With pears.”

“I'll have that. Jungkookie?”

Jungkook shifts a bit in his seat. “An Americano and-”

“We have cakes and muffins.” the girl says once she senses Jungkook's struggles as he doesn't know the menu. “Cookies as well.”

“Cakes?”

“Chocolate and pears, Carrot Cake, Apple Pie.”

“The Carrot Cake.”

The girl nods. “I'll be right back.”

Once she's back to her spot, Jin turns to Jungkook again. “How is College going?”

“Ah.” Jungkook smiles sheepily. “I actually dropped out a few weeks ago.”

“Oh.”

“No, it's a good thing.” Jungkook shrugs. “I wasn't happy there.”

“Well, as long as it is a good thing.” Jin flicks his wrist and looks at his watch. “I have an interview in about three hours, so I can stay only for one. Is that okay?”

“Yeah, hyung. Don't worry, I'm sorry I'm bothering you when you're busy.”

“You're really not bothering me, Jungkook-ah.” Jin smiles at him. “I know we haven't known each other for a long time, but you would never bother me. If I couldn't be here I would have told you, I-” Jin's smile falters a little. “I'm actually glad you reached out to me. For this.”

For Taehyung, that's what he wants to say.

The girl comes back then, carrying a tray with their drinks and cakes on it. She places easily the cappuccino in front of Seokjin, then the mug with the Americano in front of Jungkook, she then puts the two plates with the cakes in the middle of the table, there are two small forks, one in each plate, a pretty flower drawn with what looks like chocolate icing or syrup on the side of each slice of cake.

“Enjoy.”

“Thank you.” Jin smiles at her and the girl bows at them both, walking back to her spot behind the counter.

Jin gestures Jungkook to start eating, so Jungkook gets a hold of the fork and digs it in the cake, he brings the bite to his mouth and quietly chews on it, savoring the sweet flavor, the sponge cake is not dry and he can taste the walnuts and carrot mixing together, everything melting on his tongue.

“This is tasty.” he mumbles, actually surprised by how good the cake is.

Jin hums, swallows a bite of chocolate cake and then takes the mug in his hand, sips slowly his cappuccino before he looks at Jungkook with a certain finality in his eyes. “You said you needed to talk.”

Jungkook nods, looking at the fork in his hand. “Yes.”

“About Taehyung.”

“Yes.”

“What about him?”

“I'll admit I'm not so sure of how much I can say.” Jungkook presses his lips together for a moment. “I know he doesn't want people to know about this and I don't want to, you know-”

“Betray his trust.” Jin finishes for him. “Yeah. Taehyung has a lot of secrets and yet we all want to keep them as secure as possible.” the actor pushes his hair back with his hand, he sniffs and crosses his arms over the table. “Still, you called. That means you need something. Maybe advice?”

Jungkook needs more than advice, really, he needs a whole fucking manual that explains to him how to deal with Kim Taehyung and his heartbreak and solitude.

“I'll just say this.” Jungkook takes a gulp of his coffee, it's still too hot and it burns the roof of his mouth but he doesn't let it show. “Whoever happened to Taehyung in France is back.”

The reaction is, quite frankly, obvious. Jin stiffens and his eyes widen so quickly that an outsider could actually find it a bit funny, but Jungkook doesn't. Jungkook just sees half of his fears and doubts reflected in Jin's eyes and in the way he holds his breath.

Jungkook keeps quiet, Jin clears his throat and goes back to his composed self, gets another forkful of cake and eats it.

“Do you know what happened to him in France?” Jin asks.

“I know that someone happened to him.”

“Mmmh. Is he in Seoul?”

“Yeah.”

“Does Taehyung know?”

Jungkook swallows. “To an extent.”

Seokjin nods and he heaves a sigh. “I'm guessing you know that Tae and I, we-”

“You used to be a thing, yeah.” Jungkook coughs in his fist awkwardly. “Yeah, I know.”

“Well, more than a thing we were just- we just slept together. No attachments, I mean that.”

“No, I know.”

“Okay.” Jin takes a deep breath and then lays his back against the backrest of the couch. “We stopped sleeping together in France. I went to visit him and- I really don't know how to explain it.”

“He was lonely so he used you to fuck the loneliness out of him.” Jungkook says, Jin arches an eyebrow. “I've been there.”

“Oh.”

“It was mutual, so.”

Jin frowns. “Mutual.”

“We're not here for me.” Jungkook waves it off with a flick of his wrist. “Please, keep talking.”

Seokjin looks like he's torn, knowing him he probably wants to ask Jungkook more, if he's alright, if he needs any kind of help. Jin is like that, even with people he doesn't know much, he seems like the kind of person who will try and help even if it means getting bruised knuckles.

“I went to visit Taehyung in France two times.” Jin continues. “The first one was also when I called whatever thing we had off. Taehyung was the one who called me and asked me to join him in Paris for a week or so, I went and- the first two days were nice. Taehyung was a little weird, moody, but I attributed it to Taehyung being Taehyung. But on the third night, he was kind of drunk and tried to get me to sleep with him.” Jin blinks. “He started saying things. About being lonely. About needing me to stop being lonely, that everyone had left and he was lonely. And that was the moment I recognized this- this look of utter despair in his eyes. Just in that moment I realized he had that look in his eyes everytime we had sex.” Jin takes a pause. “I guess I was being selfish back then, but I was mad. I felt used, like some sort of toy for him to chew on whenever he was feeling down. I didn't understand back then, that what Taehyung wanted was more than just a way to stop feeling lonely for a while. I was too caught up in my own anger.”

“What did you do?”

Jin shrugs. “I tucked him in, told him to go the fuck to sleep and the next morning I treated him like shit. I'm not proud of it, but I was mad. We had a fight, although it was mostly me yelling and Taehyung just staring at his hands. I should've known something was wrong, but-”

“It's not your fault.” Jungkook mutters.

“I feel like it kind of was.” Jin shakes his head. “Either way, he told me he had just come out of a relationship that ended badly and that he needed reassurance or something like that.”

“Jaesung?”

“You know about him?”

“Yes.” Jungkook clenches his jaw. “I know.”

“Well, then this will make the story easier.” Jin licks his lips. “You know Tae cheated on Jaesung, right?”

“Yeah.”

“He cheated on Jaesung with this person, the one who happened to him.”

Jungkook tilts his chin up as some pieces of the story start falling back together. Taehyung had been so secretive about it, about why he had cheated on Jaesung and with who. It was him.

“After our fight, I didn't speak with Tae for a month or so, then he called me. Apologized. Asked me to come back to France because he wanted me to meet his new partner.” Jin swallows. “That's what Tae always called him. His partner. It sounded weird on Taehyung's lips, it felt like he didn't even like using it. Still, as soon as I had some free time, after a few months, I went back to Paris and met this guy.”

Jungkook waits, Jin sips his drink, gets another bite of the cake, cleans a crust of it that sticks to the corner of his mouth with a napkin.

“I won't say anything about him or what happened because it's not my place to do so and I'm not even sure if I know everything.” Jin looks at Jungkook. “But what I can say is that it wasn't healthy.”

Jungkook waits for Jin to elaborate, but the man just stares back at him.

“Not for nothing, hyung-” Jungkook starts. “But we might argue that what you and Tae had wasn't healthy either. That what Tae and I have isn't healthy. So I need you to be a little more specific.”

Jin presses his tongue against the inside of his cheek, sends a look at his almost finished cake, the looks back at Jungkook.

“Taehyung looked small around him.” Jin finally replies. “He looked scared to be seen.”

Jungkook, slowly, nods. He's seen it, he's seen Taehyung trying to disappear, to hide.

“He didn't want to be seen by him?” he asks, wanting nothing but more answers, anything.

Jin regards him for a few seconds. “He didn't want to be seen by anyone. That's all I know.”

That's a lie, Jungkook is good at recognizing lies. Jin knows more, Jin probably knows the entire story, but Jungkook doesn't push and doesn't ask for more. He gets where Jin is coming from, no one wants to betray Taehyung's trust.

“Okay.” Jungkook nods. “Thank you.”

“No, don't thank me.” Jin gives him a smile, it's one of those small smiles that are meant to be reassuring. “I just want him to be safe, you know? Safe from a lot of things. Tae has always been a conflicted kid, ever since he was fifteen, he always had a mind that worked too fast for us to catch up.”

“Yeah.”

Jin is about to take another bite of the cake but he stops with his fork mid-air. “Taehyung isn't that complicated, you know?”

“He isn't?”

“What I mean is that what he wants is simple. What he wishes for is what everyone wishes for.”

Jungkook frowns. “Which is?”

“To be happy and to be loved.” Jin replies, finally gets the cake in his mouth. “Sometimes I think you might be one of the few people who can love Taehyung the way he deserves.”

Jungkook shrugs. “You don't know me that much, hyung. I might be terrible for him.”

“You understand him. I think it's because of empathy. You know what he's going through more than we do because you're going through something similar.”

Jungkook keeps quiet, focuses on his coffee and cake again, not really sure he wants to answer Jin.

“Too much?” the man chuckles. “I used to be a Psychology major before I debuted as an actor. You're not that discreet.”

“It's okay.” Jungkook says, even if it's not. The idea that Jin can see right through him doesn't exactly sit well with him but, at the same time, he can't get mad at him. Jin only means well, he probably only ever means well.

“It will be alright, Jungkook-ah.” Jin says. “He's not made of glass.”







He thinks about this a lot once he's inside the elevator and going up to his flat. About Taehyung not being made of glass. He knows he isn't, Taehyung is flesh and blood and gold, there's no glass to be found. That doesn't mean he can't break.

The elevator's doors open and Jungkook walks fast to Taehyung's flat, knocks on the door as soon as he's in front of it. The door opens almost immediately and Jungkook is met with Taehyung wearing actual clothes (he's wearing Jeans, for crying out loud), his hair nicely styled.

“Hey, you're just in time!” Taehyung says happily as he fixes on his shoulder the strap of his bag. “I was about to leave, gotta go to my warehouse.”

“Oh.” Jungkook frowns. “Now?”

“Wanna get it out of the way, I need to do some inventory, start thinking about what pieces I want to expose. I got a lot of junk there. Wanna come with me?”

“Yeah, sure.”

“Cool.” Taehyung steps out of his house, cooing at Emilie once the cat tries to follow him outside, then he closes the door and immediately gets a hold of Jungkook's hand. “It's gonna be boring, but at least I'll have company.”

Jungkook hums as he intertwines their fingers. “You're feeling good?”

“Yeah.” Taehyung nods, presses the call button of the elevator. “I'm good.”

He looks like he is. He looks like he's made of gold again and maybe there's something a bit forced in his smile, but it doesn't look any less genuine.

“Okay.” Jungkook steps into the elevator once the door opens. “How far is this place?”

“It's like a thirty minutes bus ride, it's close.”

Jungkook nods and the doors close again, Taehyung pushes the button for the first floor then Jungkook has a whole Kim Taehyung literally launching himself against him. And, well, he's not complaining, that's for sure. Taehyung kisses him, arms wrapped around his neck, chest to chest, a smile on his lips and a sound deep from his chest filling the small space of the elevator.

“Missed my good morning kisses.” he says, Jungkook chuckles.

“Sorry.”

“You gotta take responsibility, I'm a needy asshole.”

“Okay.” Jungkook pecks Taehyung's lips again, feeling a bit giddy and warm which he knows he will regret. He's still the one who's in love and Taehyung is still Taehyung, he knows he will regret this. But for now, he doesn't mind this. Not one bit.

Taehyung grins. “You know, you're fucking cute when you laugh. You sound like a baby.”

“Oh, shut up.”

“You do. It's fucking adorable.” Taehyung bumps his nose with Jungkook's. “I never fucked in an elevator, I wonder what it would be like.”

Jungkook sighs, rests his hand on the small of Taehyung's back. “You went from incredibly soft to a whole menace in what? Two seconds?”

“Put that on my gravestone.”

“We're not fucking in an elevator.”

“Why?”

“Because.”

“That's not an answer.”

“Because, I don't want to fuck in an elevator.”

“You never had the fantasy?”

“No. I don't like elevators, they're actually kind of scary.”

“Mmh.” Taehyung gives him one last quick kiss, then pushes away from him the moment the elevator reaches the first floor. “What about airplanes?”

Jungkook frowns as they both step out of the elevator and make their way to the front door. “What about them?”

“Do they scare you?”

“Not really.”

“Mile High Club, here we come!”

“Jesus, Tae, no.” Jungkook laughs, takes Taehyung's hand again and he squeezes it.

He doesn't mind it if Taehyung's good mood is a bit forced. Taehyung himself once said it: sometimes forcing good things isn't bad.

If there's something that Jungkook learned during these past days is that Kim Taehyung lives by his words.





The warehouse isn't even a warehouse. Instead, it's a studio apartment, a large studio apartment that's for sure, that is filled almost to the brim with pieces of art in a small condo.

“Look where you're going.” Taehyung says once he turns on the light. “Or you'll step on shit that is worth good money.”

Jungkook carefully walks in the little free space the floor offers him, eyeing a few canvases that are turned to the wall, so he can't even see what Taehyung painted, he spots in a corner some statues, he's pretty sure they're in bronze.

“This might take a while so-” Taehyung gestures in the air. “Keep yourself busy. There's a window over there if you wanna have a smoke.”

Jungkook does open the window, he does smoke a cigarette, even scrolls through his timeline on twitter (refreshing it three whole times) and when he turns back to the room Taehyung is sitting cross-legged in the middle surrounded by ten different paintings and making notes on his phone.

“Do you need help?” he asks.

“No.” Taehyung replies, not looking up from his phone. “I have a system, don't worry.”

Jungkook sits down as well on the floor and he carefully takes a canvas, humming under his breath as he looks at it. After a few minutes, he finds himself in a similar situation as Taehyung's, surrounded by art pieces. There are a total of seven statues, five of them are bronze and their shapes are hard to describe, they might be people just as much they could be horses, but Jungkook still likes them, can see the appeal in them, he's sure there are collectors out there ready to sell both of their kidneys to have something like this in their houses. Because collectors are weird.

After more than an hour of utter silence, broken only by steps and rustling of clothes when Taehyung stands up and goes to another part of the flat to get another canvas, Jungkook finally notices something: Taehyung's real style is different from what he's seen so far.

What he's seen until now was Taehyung working on commissions, pieces of art that were molded under a buyer's attentive eyes. But these are Taehyung's works. His own things, no one asked him to paint these and it shows. From what he's seen, Taehyung truly loves drawing with charcoal, he enjoys smooth and gentle curves but loves the aggressiveness of black in contrast with the white of the canvas. There's an incredible amount of works in watercolors but if it's watercolors then it's a landscape, or a room, the living room of a flat, always natural light that creeps through a window or an open door. He finds that Taehyung also paints with actual metals, melting them and adding gels to them, creating abstracted images.

“Did you make all of these in France?” Jungkook asks, standing up to go and look for different paintings in a part of the room he still hasn't checked.

“Most of them.” Taehyung replies. “I'm almost done. How long have we been here?”

“Two hours?”

“I'll probably have to come here again, but I'm kind of tired.” Taehyung sighs. “I won't even expose many pieces, maybe fifteen? Or twenty, I don't know.”

“Even though you have so many?”

“I'm not happy with a lot of these.”

Jungkook takes a canvas that is covered with a white cloth and sits down again, takes the cloth away and he holds his breath.

This one is different.

So far, Jungkook has seen only three paintings with humans as their subjects and even there it was mostly people who didn't even know they were being painted, kids playing, people walking down a street.

This one, though, it looks like someone actually modeled for Taehyung.

It's a man, sitting down, completely naked, he's giving his back to the viewer, head low, maybe even hiding it between his legs, the nape of his back strained, arms wrapped around his knees. It's in watercolors but, unlike the others, there are no vibrant and bright hues, instead everything is quite dark. A pale pink that is almost dirty in a way that makes it look ashen, the background is just different shades of grey. The only thing that is bright and colorful is the gold. Jungkook thinks Taehyung used actual melted gold. It's dripping down the man's back, down his arms and hips and it deposits all around the man where he's sitting, almost as if the subject of the painting is literally losing that gold from his own skin and body.

And it's beautiful, really, but at the same time-

“This one is gorgeous.” Jungkook tries.

“Which one?”

Jungkook spins around and shows the canvas to Taehyung, the other simply arches an eyebrow.

“You like it?”

“I mean, it's- kind of haunting. But it's beautiful.” Jungkook wets his lips. “Who's the model?”

“Me.” Taehyung replies without missing a beat. “It's a self-portrait.” then he turns around and gets back to his own stash of art.

Jungkook spends the next hour staring at that painting. It takes him a while to realize that he's seen Taehyung in that same exact position, with his skin ashen and his gold missing.

Taehyung's good with self-portraits.

“I'm hungry.” Taehyung says after all that silence, he's smiling when he turns to Jungkook. “Buy me lunch.”

“You always make it a demand.”

“Buy me lunch?”

“That doesn't- why do I even bother?” Jungkook stands up and groans at the soreness in his legs after being sat down in the same position for so long. “What do you want to eat?”

Taehyung stands up as well, rubs his neck and sighs. “I want noodles. Maybe naengmyeon?”

“You always get that, why don't you try and change for once?” Jungkook follows Taehyung out of the flat, Taehyung closes the door and locks it.

“Then chapchae?”

“I meant that you always eat noodles.”

“I like noodles. You like them, too.”

“Fine. Then I'll take jajangmyun.”

Taehyung gasps at this, horrified. “I am not kissing you after you eat jajangmyun.”

Jungkook takes a deep breath, biting off a smile. “I can't wait to have all that sauce of black beans all over my teeth and lips-”

“Jungkook.”

“And then I'll just kiss you and smear that shit all over your face.”

“I can't believe this.” Taehyung scoffs, pockets the keys and grabs Jungkook's hand a little too harshly, just to keep up this angry act of his. “Then I'll shove so much fucking garlic in my mouth, you won't even be able to take a breath in my vicinity.”

“That's fucking unfair.”

“Life is unfair.”



 


 



Here's another thing Jungkook wishes someone had told him about: changes are slow and most of the times we don't notice them until it's too late.

Changes also insinuate themselves right in between routine, hiding in the routine, becoming routine until we just think “wait, haven't I been doing this since forever? Nothing actually changed”.

But no, a change is there and Jungkook just missed it.

He keeps doing what he's always done ever since he met Taehyung: takes pictures of him, takes care of Tae and lets Tae take care of him in return, watches The Heirs whenever Taehyung decides it's time to watch The Heirs, eats too much take out, gets rejected by Emilie, meets with Jimin, takes more pictures of Taehyung, surrounds himself with art, falls more and more in love with each passing day, bathes himself in the gold that is back on Taehyung's skin.

Some might call it co-dependency, Jungkook calls it his life. He's always been one of those people who believe that, once you fall in love, some sort co-dependency has to be expected. It's not to be considered unhealthy, not all the time. Jungkook is good at recognizing danger and toxicity, he has yet to find any of it in what he feels for Taehyung. But maybe calling it dependency is wrong.

It's just raw need.

Amidst all of this, he misses the change until he doesn't anymore.

Taehyung is making dinner, bitching about the ending of Bleach because- “seriously? Ichigo and Inoue?” and he takes notice of the hand that is holding his.

Taehyung is mixing vegetables in a pan and his free hand is holding Jungkook's.

Wow, Jungkook thinks, Lately he's been holding my hand a lot.

“I mean it, what kinda fucked up ending?” Taehyung grumbles, adds a pinch of salt to the meal. “The author spends a whole entire fucking series building up the relationship between Ichigo and Rukia, making them this power couple, these two people who care so fucking deeply about each other and then... then he just goes and fucks it up? Ichigo marrying Inoue?! In what fucking world?”

No, it's not just my hand, Jungkook frowns to himself, Lately he rarely ever doesn't touch me.

Jungkook, slowly, pulls his hand away from Taehyung's grip, lets his arm fall to his side. It's not even a second before Taehyung grips his shirt between his fingers.

“Like, Ichigo never fucking cared about Inoue. Not in a romantic way, at least. She was the annoying character who had no cool powers whatsoever unless it was important to the plot.” Taehyung starts tugging the fabric of Jungkook's shirt. “He just had to go and save her sometimes. And even there, half of the time he was worried for Rukia. And Tite Kubo went all the fucking way to show us that Ichida had some sort of crush for Inoue, made it clear as hell that Ichigo had eyes only for Rukia.”

Jungkook holds his breath as Taehyung's hand starts moving over his stomach and to his hip.

“Besides, Rukia is still the best female character the world has ever seen. Fuck Inoue and her huge boobs and useless healing powers. Ichigo marries Inoue?! Bullshit. Rukia marrying Renji?! Even more bullshit. Rukia never saw Renji in a romantic way, he was her childhood friend! The only two people she ever loved were Kaien and Ichigo. Who also were awfully alike. So fuck out of here with that bullshit of an ending.”

Taehyung finds his hand again and holds it once more, this time a bit tighter, Jungkook feels his jaw clenching.

Lately Taehyung always touches him. Always. It's always his hand but if he can't hold it then Taehyung will cling to his shirt or jacket, or maybe he will wrap his arms around his waist. In the past few days, Taehyung rarely does something without having some sort of physical contact and Jungkook knows it can't be good. Taehyung has always been one of those people who like skinship but this is on a whole other level. This is worrying.

This is Taehyung needed the reassurance that he's still there.

Jungkook knows he should probably say something about it, talk with Taehyung, make him open up, vent, scream, whatever. But he doesn't.

“Hey.” Taehyung frowns at him. “You okay?”

“Yeah.” Jungkook grins. “And, honestly, Bleach has an ending that is even worse than Naruto's.”

Tahyung scoffs and turns back to his frying vegetables. “Don't get me started on Naruto I'm-not-gay-but-I-would-bone-Sasuke, we don't have all that time.”

Taehyung's thumb rubs circles on the palm of Jungkook's hands, fingers holding it so tightly that it leaves marks on the skin.



 


 



Yoongi has a huge flat. Jungkook still doesn't know how Yoongi manages to pay for said huge flat.

“Royalties.” Yoongi told him once with a shrug of his shoulders. “I make music kid, I get paid for it.”

And sure, that might sound believable considering how big Yoongi is in the underground environment, but Jungkook still has the doubt that Yoongi sells drugs in his free time, he wouldn't be surprised.

Since his flat is so big that's where they have their once in a month dinners where, for once, they actually cook their own meals and drink decent wine from actual bottles.

Yoongi is grilling some meat in the kitchen whilst Jimin sets the table when the door rings.

“I'll get it.” Hoseok says, getting off Namjoon's lap, who looks half asleep or maybe stoned. Possibly both.

Hoseok opens the door and steps aside to let Jin inside, the man pulls down his chin a mouth mask and smiles, holding up two bottles of wine “I got alcohol.”

“Then you may step in, hyung.” Jimin says as he puts seven glasses on the table.

“What did you bring?” Jungkook asks.

“Chardonnay.”

Taehyung scoffs, he's clinging to Jungkook's arm and drowning in a wool cardigan that hangs too large on his shoulders. “That's so unoriginal.”

“Then next time you get the wine, Taehyung.” Jin replies serenely, he puts the bottles on the table and Hoseok gets back on Namjoon's lap.

“Hyung, are you high?” Jimin asks with a frown, voicing everyone's concerns.

“The fuck? No.” Namjoon grumbles, pressing his face against Hoseok's back. “'m tired. Didn't get much sleep yesterday.”

“Why is that?” Jungkook asks, Hoseok smirks.

“Well, Jungkookie, when two people love each other a lot-”

“Fuck off.” Jungkook groans, Taehyung snickering by his side and shifting on the couch to sit more comfortably.

Yoongi appears from the kitchen with a spatula in his hand, pointed at Namjoon and Hoseok. “You always say Jimin and I are disgusting, meanwhile you two are basically two sex-machines who literally give up on sleep just so you can fuck. I won't accept any kind of jokes about our sex life anymore.”

Hoseok arches an eyebrow. “I can't take you seriously when you're wearing an apron with a goddamn chick on it.”

Yoongi clicks his tongue, crosses his arms defensively over the apron where a drawn yellow chick smiles and has hearts all around it. “Jimin got it for me, dickhead.”

“Doesn't mean you have to wear it.”

“No, he does.” Jimin retorts with a pout “He looks cute.”

“There you have it.” Yoongi says, sounding too satisfied for something so silly. “I'm cute. He finds me cute in this apron, so who's the real winner?”

“Go hatch some eggs, Yoonchick.”

Tahyung groans. “Oh God, hyung, that was bad.”

“Whatever.” Hoseok shrugs. “I ain't a comedian. Don't need to be funny.”

Jin takes a deep breath. “I'm suddenly regretting agreeing to this dinner. Oh!” he claps his hands. “What do you give a cannibal who's late for dinner?”

Taehyung closes his eyes. “Please, don't.”

“A cold shoulder!”

Jungkook watches, in utter disbelief, Jin making actual to God finger guns and then proceeding to laugh at his own terrible joke. Jimin quickly follows him, though, dissolving into giggles.

“The entirety of high school.” Taehyung whispers. “He had a new one every day. We all wanted him dead.”





Jungkook won't lie, Yoongi can cook. Yoongi can cook maybe even a little too well, which is why they all end up sprawled on the couch and armchair, groaning because their bellies are too stuffed with food.

“I see Jesus.” Hoseok whispers, Namjoon mumbles something under his breath and tries to get a bit more comfortable on the armchair even though he has a handful of his boyfriend sitting on top of him. “I'm about to shake hands with the creator.”

“That's so fucking dramatic.” Jimin says as he cards his fingers through Yoongi's hair, the older man sitting between Jimin's legs on the floor. “We just ate a bit too much, you all need to chill.”

“Does he always cook this much for you?” Jin asks, a pillow kept tightly between his arms over his stomach.

Jimin pauses. “No, he cooks even more if it's just for me.”

“Jesus Christ.” Taehyung wheezes, throws an arm over Jungkook's chest and sighs once he rests his head on his shoulder.

“You should eat, babe.” Yoongi manages, eyes half closed.

“I do eat, you try to kill me with all that food.” Jimin sends Jungkook a look, their eyes meet. “Kookie, can you come with me for a second? Need a cigarette.”

Jungkook frowns but he still starts to get up, gently prying away Taehyung's arm, ignoring the other man's whining, he puts a pillow under his head and follows Jimin to the kitchen, where they left the small window open so that they can smoke there without stinking the living room.

Jimin closes the door of the kitchen behind him, takes two cigarettes from his pack and gives one to Jungkook.

“Okay, if you're giving me smokes then this talk can't be good.” he says, Jimin lights up his cigarette and gives the lighter to Jungkook.

“What's wrong with Taehyung?”

Jungkook stills, the flame of the lighter close to his cigarette, he looks at Jimin and finds him staring back.

“You're gonna have to be a little more precise, lots of things are wrong with Tae.” Jungkook says, he lights up the cigarette and inhales. “Like, for example, he doesn't have breakfast.”

“Jungkook, I don't have time for this shit.” Jimin leans back on the kitchen counter and nervously taps his cigarette. “I know Tae. I know he likes to touch people, he's all about physical contact, but this is ridiculous.”

“I don't-”

“He didn't let go of your arm for the entire fucking night.” Jimin hisses, sending a glance at the door and then lowering the volume of his voice. “He clang onto you like a fucking child. And when it wasn't your arm it was your hand. Fuck's sake, when you stood up to go take a piss he almost tried to follow you for a moment, what the fuck is going on?”

Jungkook looks down, forces a shrug. “Don't know. He must be feeling needy or something.”

Jimin arches an eyebrow. “You're a shitty liar.”

“Okay, shit.” Jungkook shakes his head and breathes out a lungful of smoke. “There's stuff going on with him.”

“What stuff?”

“Ask him and if he'll tell you then you'll know. The only reason why I know is that I saw him. He didn't want to be seen, though.” Jungkook pauses. “I don't know why he's being so needy, I don't know why he keeps touching me. I think he's not even aware he's being like this.”

Slowly, Jimin nods, Jungkook can see he's biting the inside of his cheek. They smoke in silence for a few seconds before Jungkook clears his voice.

“It- I mean, I also told him that I love him.”

At this, Jimin's eyebrows rise almost comically but before he can say anything, the door opens making both of them jump.

“Hey.” Yoongi looks at them with his brows furrowed. “Everything okay?”

“Yeah.” Jimin forces a smile and nods. “We'll be right back, babe, just- give us a moment?”

Yoongi looks at Jimin for a few seconds before he heaves a sigh and closes the door again, leaving them alone.

“You told him you love him.” Jimin repeats.

“Yeah.”

“Oh.” Jimin swallows hard, brings the cigarette to his lips and takes a long drag. “Well, shit. Did he- I mean, did he say it back?”

“He did.” Jungkook taps on the cigarette, letting the ash fall in the sink. “I don't believe him.”

Jimin hums. “Why?”

“You don't believe I love yous when they're after a good fuck, nor when the other is drunk, nor when someone is miserable.” Jungkook throws the cigarette out the window. “So, yeah. I don't believe him.”

Jimin nods. “And Taehyung was which one of those examples?” Jungkook doesn't reply. “You're not gonna tell me shit, are you? It's okay. Tae has this power over people, no one wants to let one of his secrets out until you find yourself defending them with claws and fangs. I've been there. Maybe that's why he's being so clingy with you.”

Jungkook licks his lips, shifts his weight uncomfortably from one leg to the other. “'Cause I told him I love him?”

“Now he knows that someone is actually in love with him and that's what he needs. Taehyung has always been someone who needs affection. You're giving him love and he's literally clinging to it.”

Jungkook, in spite of all the rules of a serious conversation, rolls his eyes. “Since when are you a shrink?”

“I'm his friend.” Jimin says, he suddenly sounds tired. “I know him, Jungkook. Fuck, we were each other's first time, don't assume I don't know my friend just because you've been basically playing happy family together.”

Well, shit.

“I'm sorry.” Jungkook murmurs. “I didn't mean to.”

“No, it's okay.”

“It's not okay. He isn't.” Jungkook looks at Jimin. “Hyung, he's not okay.”

“Kookie,” Jimin presses his lips together for a moment. “Tae hasn't been okay for a long time.”

Yes, Jungkook is acutely aware of this. But the fact that Jimin is as well, that scares him more and once again he ventures just a little bit deeper into the spiral and his shoulders feel heavier.

“Let's go back.” Jimin throws his cigarette out the window as well. “Before Yoongi comes here and drags our asses on the couch with his bare hands.”










Jungkook has never been much of a reader.

Books take time and Jungkook always felt like he never really had enough hours to spare for something like reading. But there was this one day when Jungkook had to meet Jimin for coffee, then Jimin bailed on his ass and then it started raining and- well, it wasn't a nice day. But Jungkook didn't have an umbrella and the only place where he could hide and wait for the storm to pass was a public library and the only thing libraries have to offer are books.

He remembers spending almost three hours there, reading all kinds of random chapters from random books but there is still only one line he can quote to memory.

What should young people do with their lives today? Many things, obviously. But the most daring thing is to create stable communities in which the terrible disease of loneliness can be cured.

Kurt Vonnegut.

Jungkook never read anything else from Vonnegut but, to this day, he has a feeling that Vonnegut understands loneliness in a way that is similar to how Taehyung and Jungkook understand it. As in, Vonnegut felt it. It must be felt in order to be understood.

Loneliness is tricky. It hides easily.





Jungkook quickly puts his just bought groceries in the fridge, drops his bag on the sofa and goes to the balcony. The sun is coming down, it's almost dinner time and he needs food. He jumps over the railing and gets on Taehyung's side of the balcony, he finds the door open as usual and he steps inside the flat.

“Tae, I'm hungry as fuck.” he says to the empty living room. “You up for some lamb skewers?”

There's an unfinished canvas lying on the floor but it's only a blob of red acrylic on the fabric. Jungkook frowns and starts walking to the kitchen, maybe Taehyung is cooking there.

“Taehyung?” he calls again and after a second Taehyung appears from the hallway. “Hey.”

“Thank God you're here.” Taehyung murmurs before walking to Jungkook with large steps.

Before Jungkook has time to say something, Taehyung is already kissing him, hands immediately tugging at his shirt, a broken sound leaving his chest.

“Woah, okay.” Jungkook tries to pull back but Taehyung is firm, doesn't let go of him and kisses him once more, this time harder, teeth tugging at his bottom lip and hands roaming over his chest.

“Fuck me,” Taehyung says, slowly pushing him closer to the wall. “Or I can fuck you, whichever is fine.” then he's kissing him again.

In any other occasion, Jungkook would be more than fine with this since this definitely feels like one of Taehyung's angry fucks, the ones where it's quick and it has to hurt a little, maybe a lot.

And maybe that's the problem.

Jungkook breaks the kiss. “Stop. Hey, stop this.”

Taehyung stills, frowning. “Why? What's wrong?”

“That's my line. What's wrong with you today, mh?”

“A lot of shit is wrong with me every day.”

“Taehyung.”

“Shit, fine.” Taehyung rolls his eyes and steps back. “If you don't want to fuck just say it.”

Jungkook lets a few seconds pass, wills the first layers of dread to settle themselves in his chest and hopes for the best.

“Tae, are you okay?”

“I'm stellar.” Taehyung starts patting the pockets of his robe until he finds his cigarettes and lighter, he puts one between his lips. “Just horny, but since you're not gonna help then-”

Jungkook doesn't say anything but he looks at Taehyung as he tries to set his cigarette alight, but his hands are shaking too much, he keeps flicking the lighter but the flame dies immediately.

“Tae, what's wrong?”

“Fuck off, Jungkook. Nothing's wrong, okay?”

“Seriously?” Jungkook scoffs. “Whatever. I'm not dealing with you when you're so fucking pissy.”

Taehyung finally manages to light up his cigarettes and he throws him a glare. “Oh, I'm sorry I'm such a fucking handful, Kookie. I am so sorry I can't be a perfect boyfriend for you.”

Jungkook arches an eyebrow. “Didn't know you were my boyfriend.”

“You see me fucking anyone else?”

“I don't know, are you?”

Jungkook doesn't even know why he says it. He's got a bad temper when people are being annoying and rude to him for no reason so sometimes he replies without even thinking, sue him.

Taehyung's whole attitude changes immediately, his shoulders slump down and his eyes grow wide.

“No, don't-” Jungkook sighs. “Shit, I'm sorry.”

“Get the fuck out of my house.” Taehyung says, voice flat and a hard look in his eyes.

“Taehyung, I'm sorry! It's just- I'm not having sex with you when you're like this, that's all.”

“When I'm like what?”

“Do you want to have sex or do you want me to fuck something out of you?”

Taehyung shrugs. “Where's the difference?”

Jungkook won't lie, that fucking hurts. A lot.

“Thought we were past the whole fucking because we are lonely.” he says through gritted teeth, wanting nothing to turn back time and never leave his apartment.

“You're the one who said we could still use each other.” Taehyung retorts. “Didn't know you changed your mind about that.”

“Didn't think we had to actually say it out loud.”

“Mmh,” Taehyung breathes out a cloud of smoke. “Funny, considering you sure like to say things out loud even if there's no need.”

Oh.

Jungkook has an idea as to what Taehyung is referring to.

“You know what?” Jungkook shakes his head. “I'm just gonna go home, you do your shit, I don't care.”

“You wanna know why your life feels hollow, Kook?”

“Okay, that's it.” Jungkook starts walking back to the door that leads to the balcony.

“I'll tell you why!” Taehyung keeps going, raising his voice. “It's because people tell us from the beginning, since we're capable of understanding words, that we are the makers of our life but that's bullshit!”

Jungkook stops in his tracks and heaves a sigh, he turns back to Taehyung. “Why are you telling me this?”

“We're not the authors of anything, we're not the painters, we're the canvas!”

“Taehyung, just tell me what's wrong.”

“I am tired of being a canvas!” Taehyung yells, Jungkook can't help but flinch back. “I've been trying for years to stop being a canvas and I'd even be fine with just being a brush, or even just paint, but I keep failing!”

“Taehyung, hey.” Jungkook takes a step forward when he sees tears already welling up in Taehyung's eyes. “Don't cry, just tell me what's wrong.”

“Everything!” Taehyung shouts, his eyes turn red and then he takes a step back. “Leave me alone.”

“Since when are you happy with being alone?!”

“Jungkook.” Taehyung takes a deep breath, eyes fluttering close. “Get out of my house.”

Jungkook stands still for maybe an entire minute, staring at Taehyung and hoping that he will look back, catch his eyes and maybe finally tell him what is going on with him. Hell, it's fine even if he doesn't, it's fine even if he just looks at him and tells him to stay.

But he doesn't.

“Fine.” Jungkook clicks his tongue. “Whatever.”

He turns around and goes back outside on the balcony, jumps over the railing and then stops again. He tries to ignore how fucking cold it is now that November is getting closer and waits, looking at the other side of the balcony, hoping for Taehyung to come out. Instead, after a few seconds, the lights in Taehyung's living room are turned off.

It's ironic, truly, how much those lights being turned off can do. Because Jungkook thinks that since he met Taehyung they fought off loneliness and solitude with gritted teeth, found solace in each other. And all it took for all of this to break was to simply turn off some lights.

And now they're both alone.







He spends the next day alone and Jungkook realizes he's not so used to this anymore. Taehyung managed to paint himself on every single inch of his skin, always being present, always giving the both of them something to talk about. Jungkook is not used to spend an entire day alone.

For some reason, he thinks back on Taehyung's rant about Bleach. Which is- concerning, to say the least. He could write an entire book with all the crazy shit Taehyung told him, entire essays, really. Instead, he thinks about Bleach.

He's on the balcony, secretly hoping that maybe Taehyung will come out and maybe they'll manage to have a talk now that the anger is gone.

Jungkook flicks the cigarette, some wispy tendrils flying away and he thinks about Bleach. A stupid fucking manga with a shitty ending and really drawn out arks that weren't even that good. But the author did one good thing amidst all the mess.

Jungkook remembers the Hollows. Ghosts, basically, evil spirits. Then there were stronger Hollows but that was a shitty ark. The entire concept behind the characters of that ark was easy and simple, strong warriors with a hole in their bodies. One of them had a hole in his chest. They were just hollow.

A simple concept.

Jungkook wonders as to how his life became like this. He had a good childhood, a loving family, good friends, a decent academic career until he decided to fuck it in the ass. So when did it stop being enough for him? When did it become hollow? Can he even pinpoint the moment he started feeling like this?

No, he can't.

Loneliness, as he already knew, is tricky and it hides well. The worst part is that he's the one who hid it. Oh, Jungkook seriously took his sweet time and effort into shoving his problems away into a tiny box in a corner of his head. Humans tend to do that. Humans like procrastination and they are more than willing to procrastinate even when it comes to facing their own problems, Jungkook is the prime example of this.

Jungkook takes a drag of smoke, lets it settle in his lungs before he breathes it out. Taehyung probably didn't try to shove his problems away. Taehyung looks like the kind of person who would just shrug and say “yeah well, tough shit, gotta do something about it I guess.”

See how well that worked for him.

Jungkook sighs, puts out the cigarette on the railing and throws it off the balcony, then he goes back inside his house because, ever since yesterday, the lights in Taehyung's living room haven't been turned on.





Second day he's about to spend alone and Namjoon calls him.

“I'm buying you lunch.”

“Why does that sound like an order?” Jungkook asks, moves his cellphone to rest on his shoulder. He's in his sweats and hoodie, flipping through the TV's channels without really paying attention.

“I'm bored, Hoseok's busy all day.”

Jungkook scoffs. “I'm just your second choice, hyung.”

“Just- get your ass ready, I'll be under your place in ten. Ask Taehyung if he wants to-”

“He can't.” Jungkook cuts him off, sniffs. “Or maybe he can, but he wouldn't come.”

There's silence for a second. “Okay, then it's you and me kiddo.”







What Jungkook said about really fucking caring about Namjoon? He means it.

As much as he had a peaceful high school existence, Jungkook went through teen angst just as much as everyone else and Namjoon has always been there for him. Always, since day one.

Namjoon starts flipping the meat on the grill with the metal pliers but he loses his grip on them and they fall on the table.

“I'll- I'll do it.” Jungkook grabs the pliers with an awkward cough, Namjoon stares at them as if they've just killed his family. “We wanna get out of this lunch alive.”

“They're oily, that's why-”

“I know, hyung.” Jungkook says, flipping the meat on the grill with the perfectly dry pliers. “Not your fault.”

Namjoon slumps back in his seat and angrily grabs the bottle of beer, filling himself a glass. “Two days ago- or was it three? Whatever, two days ago my toothbrush snapped in half. I was just brushing my goddamn teeth and the thing just gave up on me.”

Jungkook chuckles, he puts the pliers back on the table and waits for the beef to be fully cooked. “Everything's going well with Hoseok-hyung, yeah?”

Namjoon smiles, dimples showing and everything. “You remember back in high school how I was always bitching about true love and all that shit?”

Jungkook nods. “Unfortunately.”

“Well, you don't hear me bitching anymore, so.”

“Wow, true love. A miracle in this dark society.”

Namjoon laughs. Jungkook always liked the sound of Namjoon's laughter because it doesn't fit him or the aesthetic he's got going on, his laugh sounds all childish and uncontrolled.

Jungkook sees the meat frizzling and gets the pliers, he starts putting the beef on their plastic plates, giving the first one to Namjoon.

“Thanks for the food, hyung.”

“Don't mention it.” Namjoon quickly wraps the meat and some rice in a leaf of lettuce and pushes it in his mouth, chewing slowly. “How's your work going?”

“Work?” Jungkook frowns around a mouthful of rice.

“Photography.”

“I don't see any money so how is that work?”

Namjoon gives him an unimpressed stare. “Kook.”

“It's going well.” Jungkook shrugs. “Haven't done much these past few days, but it's going.”

Namjoon nods. “As long as it's going.”

The meat is delicious, Jungkook sees Namjoon adding just some salt to it and they keep eating in silence for a while, the conversation is forgotten in favor of savoring the food. Namjoon fills a glass of beer for Jungkook and he hands it to him.

“So,” he starts. “Why did you say that Tae doesn't want to come?”

Jungkook keeps a sigh to himself. He knew this was coming, Namjoon rarely lets this kind of things slide.

“We had a fight.”

“Trouble in heaven?”

Jungkook glances at him before he dips his lettuce wrap in the bowl of ssamjang. “More like trouble in hell.”

Namjoon shakes his head with a small smile. “Whenever you two are together I see all kinds of flowers and hearts fluttering around your heads.”

“Then lend me whatever glasses you use, 'cause I sure as shit can't see said hearts.” Jungkook shoves the wrap in his mouth and, stupid as he is, thinks that Taehyung doesn't like spicy foods so he wouldn't use the ssamjang and would rather eat the pajeori instead.

“That bad?” Namjoon cocks his head to the side “How bad, Kook?”

Namjoon is good at picking up clues. Jungkook has left a whole trail of clues behind him because he's an idiot, so of course Namjoon has been keeping track of them.

“I've been meaning to ask you for a while, actually.” Namjoon puts the chopsticks on the plate and gives him a reassuring smile. “You're not doing too well, are you?”

That's a fucking understatement if Jungkook has ever heard one.

“I have stuff going on.” Jungkook replies.

“What stuff?”

“It's weird.”

Namjoon shrugs. “Yeah, well, I'm listening.”

Jungkook heaves a sigh and leaves the meat alone, sitting a little straighter on the plastic chair. The restaurant is almost empty if not for them and a group of friends sitting at the corner table, a couple in the middle chatting to themselves.

“I'm lonely. At least, I call it loneliness.” Jungkook says. “I'm suffering because of it.”

Namjoon nods but doesn't say anything, waiting for him to continue talking. He's always been like this, waits for the whole story before giving advice if Jungkook asks for it.

“Taehyung has it similar to me, in that aspect. Except his it is a whole different shit.”

“But still similar?”

“In a way, yeah.”

“Okay.”

“I just realized a few months ago that my life feels hollow. No, I feel hollow. And I wasn't happy.”

“Is that why you dropped out of college?”

“It's one of the reasons, yeah.” Jungkook could use a smoke right now. “Tae and I used to help each other to ease this loneliness until it became something else. And we fought, two days ago. Bad fight. I said stupid shit, he said nasty shit, now we aren't talking.”

Namjoon nods, he opens his mouth to say something but keeps quiet when the waitress comes back with the other serving of side dishes they ordered. He waits for her to be gone before he speaks.

“You want to know what I think?”

“Yeah. I do.” Jungkook answers.

“Okay.” he rubs the nape of his neck and then crosses his arms. “I- well, I actually wish you told me about this earlier, Jungkook. About the loneliness. But now you did, so that's good. It's an interesting word that you chose. Hollow.”

“Is it?”

“The definition of hollow is having a space or cavity inside. Or being not solid. Or empty.” Namjoon pauses. “Do you feel empty? Or not solid?”

“I am solid.”

“Do you feel like you are? Or do you feel like you're just a big floating little thing that the wind will carry away?”

“No, it's not- I'm just- fuck it if I know. But it's not that.”

“So, empty. You feel an empty space inside you?”

Jungkook nods. “In my chest. Sometimes in my head.”

“Have you been feeling that way when you're with Taehyung?”

“No, only when I'm alone.”

“If there's an empty space then all you have to do is filling it.” Namjoon fidgets with the napkin in front of him, his eyes set on Jungkook. “That's why you feel that emptiness when you're alone. You've always been like this, since high school, if left alone you just kind of try to kill time without actually doing anything. Immobility is the cancer of happiness, you know?”

“Immobility.”

“You always had the need to do something. Ever since you were a fucking kid, you were always doing stuff. Be it dancing, taking photos, taking singing classes, drawing. But everytime that you had nothing to do and too much free time on your hands you would just sit down and stare at nothing, looking bored out of your mind.” Namjoon licks his gums. “You feel this emptiness when you're not doing something and being alone is an excuse to do nothing. So those two things go hand in hand. But then Tae shows up and suddenly he's there, doing all his artsy things, being a fucking hurricane and you got your hands on a camera again after- shit, how many years?”

“A lot.” Jungkook says with a small smile.

“See, that's the first real smile you gave me all day.” Namjoon shakes his head. “You fill that hollow space with photography, that's good. But the thing is that you also try to fill that space with Taehyung.”

Jungkook grimaces. “I'm guessing that's not a good thing?”

“People don't exist to fill empty holes, Jungkook. People exist to exist.”

Jungkook, for some reason, feels like he needs to defend himself but Namjoon isn't scolding him, he never did and he never will. So he keeps quiet.

“I'm not doubting that you and Tae help each other with your loneliness, but that's all you should do: be there for each other. Not filling empty holes in your chests.” Namjoon shrugs. “So I think you should keep on filling your hole with photography, art, even fucking junk food if that's your drug. Just not with a person. And about your fight with him, that's all it is. A fight. You two will talk it out, make peace or whatever, kiss it out and it's gonna be all good.”

“Sounds easy.”

“Because it is. Not the whole situation, but this part of it is easy.”

Fuck Namjoon for always being right, sometimes it's annoying. Other times, like this one, Jungkook is happy that Namjoon is always right.

“Okay.” he says. “Thanks, hyung.”

Namjoon waves a hand dismissively. “Don't thank me, kid. You thank me for paying your meals, not for being a friend. And, listen to me, whenever you feel this hollowness call me, okay? I'll listen to you and give you a hand if I can. Don't hide these things from me, I catch on quickly.”

Jungkook can't help the smile that stretches his lips, so he looks down at his empty plate and manages a small. “Okay, hyung.”

“Okay.” Namjoon sighs. “Now, let me drive you back home and then let's see if I can get a hold of my boyfriend. Lately he's busier than President Obama.”

Jungkook frowns. “He's not the president anymore.”

“Well, I have nothing but respect for my president and that cheeto that Americans voted for sure as fuck isn't.”







It's the third day, Jungkook is coming back from a lunch with Jimin because, if he can help it, he'll spend as little time as possible completely alone in his flat.

Jungkook steps out of the elevator, already fishing for the keys in the pocket of his jacket and when he sees Taehyung standing in front of his door his pace slows down until he stops walking.

Taehyung is leaning against the wooden door, wearing nothing but one of his stupid robes again and, God, Jungkook wants nothing more than run to him and just cover him with his jacket because it's still cold in the hallways and Taehyung is basically naked, the fucking idiot. But there's also anger building up its way in his system after what Taehyung told him that night and it mixes with the shame of what Jungkook said. So all he does is start walking again and he lets the keys hang from his index finger so that they make noise.

Taehyung looks up from the floor when he hears the sound of them clinking and he seems to be holding his breath, looking at him with tired eyes.

Jungkook ignores him and, just because he's feeling particularly fucking mean and particularly fucking immature, actually pushes him away from the door. He does it gently. Lets his hand linger a bit on Taehyung's hip as well.

Taehyung opens his mouth but he closes it again immediately, so Jungkook rolls his eyes and puts the keys in the lock of the door. It opens after he turns them three times, Jungkook is about to step inside.

“I'm sorry.”

Jungkook turns to Taehyung and arches an eyebrow. “What?”

“I'm sorry.” Taehyung repeats. “And I miss you.”

He looks a bit lost, Jungkook notices. Taehyung looks at him with huge eyes and he bites his bottom lip, hands grasping at the fabric of his robe. Jungkook grabs his wrist and pulls him inside his flat, he closes the door behind him and then leans his back against it.

Taehyung stands still where he is, glancing occasionally at his wrist that Jungkook is still holding.

“I know you are.” Jungkook tugs him a bit closer and Taehyung seems to get the message, easily letting Jungkook pull him to his chest and wrapping his arms around his neck, Jungkook hears him releasing the breath he was holding. “I'm sorry, too.”

“For what are you even apologizing, I'm the one who acted like a piece of shit.” Taehyung says, Jungkook holds him and presses his nose against Taehyung's hair.

“No, I was an asshole to you. We both were, but still.”

“I'm so sorry. I don't know why I acted like that, I was just in such a shitty mood for no reason, it was one of the bad days. I have them sometimes.”

“Yeah, I know.”

“I missed you a lot.” his voice comes muffled because he has his face pressed on Jungkook's neck now. “I missed you, I'm sorry.”

“'m sorry, too. Just-” Jungkook swallows and, for some reason, he's scared of saying what comes next. “What I said about us using each other.”

“Mmmh?”

“I'm not sure I'm okay with it anymore.”

Taehyung lets out a long breath, he seems to also mumble something, Jungkook can feel his lips moving against his skin, but he doesn't hear the words.

“I swear, I didn't-” Taehyung pulls away creating a very tiny amount of space between their bodies just so he can look in Jungkook's eyes. “I didn't mean to use you. That doesn't mean I wasn't trying to, but I didn't realize. It just- it wasn't a good day, I'm sorry.”

Jungkook nods.

“I don't want to use you.” Taehyung says. “I don't want to be used either.”

Fuck.

Fuck, that feels good to hear.

“Okay. No more using.” Jungkook strokes Taehyung's neck with his thumb. “I'm sorry for what I said about you fucking around. I know you aren't.”

At this, Taehyung scoffs. “I mean, it's a normal thought, I did cheat on someone.”

“It's not the same thing and you seriously need to stop thinking about it.” especially considering that now Jungkook knows exactly with who Taehyung cheated on Jaesung.

Maybe he's the one who doesn't want to think about it.

Taehyung now has a different look in his eyes. He cups Jungkook's cheek, thumb swiping over the skin and Jungkook has a hard time not feeling particularly small under the intensity of Taehyung's gaze.

“Your hands are really fucking cold.” he says, Taehyung just keeps looking. “What were you even thinking, standing there with just this stupid robe on? Silk doesn't keep you warm, just classy.”

“I feel bad.”

“What?”

“I feel bad for being with you.”

Jungkook squeezes just a bit Taehyung's hips. “Why?”

“I feel like I'm stealing you from someone better. A hypothetical someone better.” he pauses, then he says “You're too good for me.” with a small voice, almost as if he didn't want to say it out loud.

“I'm not too good. I treat you the way you deserve to be treated. That's not being too good for someone, that's being just enough.”

Taehyung huffs a short chuckle but he really does not look amused. “Yeah, well, that's not what-” he stops talking. “No, nevermind.”

“What?” Jungkook pulls him a bit closer. “Look, just say it. Get it out, I won't judge you or anything like that. But I feel like maybe you should say things out loud.”

Taehyung drops his eyes from his face, focusing on the collar of Jungkook's jacket, he even takes it between his fingers and starts twisting the fabric between them.

“What you said about not being too good, about being enough,” he starts, voice a little insecure. “That's not what he used to say to me. Or about me.”

It's funny hating someone when you don't even know the name of that someone.

Jungkook kind of wants to give him a name, just so that he can curse him in his head with some more realism to it. At the same time, Jungkook's fine with him just staying a he. It makes him feel less important than he truly is and even less real, because real things and real threats still scare the shit out of Jungkook.

“What did he use to say?” he asks.

Taehyung grimaces, like he's in actual physical fucking pain, squirms a bit, tries to shrug but his body is stiff. “Stuff.”

“What stuff? Hey, come on, look at me.”

Taehyung does so even though it takes him a handful of seconds.

“What stuff did he use to say?”

“Just. Well, he was- fuck, I don't-”

“Tae.” Jungkook lets go of Taehyung's hips to hold his hands, pulling them up between them. “I'll just listen. I won't judge. Just listening.”

They're still standing by the door, Jungkook leaning on it, he guesses that maybe it would be better if they sat on the couch or the bed, but he's afraid he's going to lose his chance of having Taehyung open up just a little if they move.

Taehyung looks into his eyes when he finally speaks. “He used to say he was too good for me. It was- fuck, all the time. All the time, it was always I'm too good with you Taehyung, Too good for you, Taehyung. And it was with art as well. He would compare our things and he would always say that I wasn't as good, that when I got close to being as good as he is it was just because I was copying his style. And then that I wasn't good enough. For him. For a lot of shit, actually.” Taehyung wets his lips and chuckles nervously. “You know, you hear something a lot and you start believing it.”

“He made you believe that?” Jungkook whispers this because he can't even begin to understand how Taehyung, the Taehyung he knows, could think such things about himself. “Tae, you believed him?”

Taehyung, beautiful, confident, talented, absolutely mesmerizing Taehyung, says “Sometimes I still do.”

Jungkook feels something twisting in his chest. He doesn't know what it is, if it's sadness or anger or maybe both of them, but it hurts. It hurts enough to make his eyes sting and his hands shake.

Taehyung's eyes widen. “Hey, no, why are you crying?”

Jungkook presses his lips together, his throat constricting into a sob he doesn't let out and he closes his eyes, feeling wetness sliding down his cheeks.

“Jungkookie, don't cry.” Taehyung starts wiping away the tears with his hands, a look of panic on his face. “It's okay, don't cry, it's not your fault, why are you-”

“'Cause I'm sorry.” shit, he sounds like a five years old when he cries. “I'm so fuh-fucking sorry Tae.”

Taehyung gives him this look that says Yeah, me too, then he hugs him and strokes his head.

“Don't cry. Don't cry for me, it's alright.”

That's not why Jungkook is crying. He's crying because he knows that there's so much more that Taehyung isn't telling him about.

Taehyung is terrified of this person. Taehyung probably loved him more than words can describe and he's still fucking terrified of him. Taehyung cried like the world was ending when Jungkook told him he was his muse.

He just learned about the surface of Taehyung's pain, that's why he's crying.

But Jungkook learned the hard way that sometimes saying things out loud truly does not sit right with Taehyung, so he keeps sobbing quietly in the crook of Taehyung's neck and wills himself to believe all the sweet nothings the other whispers in his hair; every I'm okay, Kookie, he clings to every We'll fix it all and he lets all the I missed yous carve themselves in his head until his sobs quietens and then fade away and he's left with no tears but just a painful buzz and a sense of extreme fatigue.

“Can I sleep here tonight?” Taehyung asks at some point. “I don't mean for- we don't have to do anything, I just missed you and I slept like shit because now I'm used to sleeping with you, so.”

“Yeah, stay.” Jungkook pulls back a little and lets out an embarrassed laugh. “Shit, I'm sorry.”

“It's okay.” Taehyung gives him a gentle smile. “Just- you've got snot drooling.”

“What?” Jungkook taps his nose and... yeah. “Oh, for fuck's sake.”

Jungkook ignores the very amused look Taehyung is giving him and he wipes the snot away with the back of his hand, which he knows it's disgusting but he's taking fast decisions here with very little props to his use.

“I'm hungry.” Taehyung says. “Last time you said something about Lamb Skewers. Wanna order them and watch whatever is on tv?”

“Yeah. Sounds like a plan.” Jungkook sighs. “Can I kiss you or are you still disgusted by my snot?”

Taehyung rolls his eyes at him and then they're kissing. Very slowly, very gently and with small apologies hidden in every movement of their lips. And Jungkook really fucking missed this. Him.





They end up in Jungkook's bed a little while after midnight since Taehyung was already falling asleep on the couch anyways.

Admittedly, Jungkook hasn't been having the best sleep either in this last few nights alone. Taehyung isn't the only one who got used to sleeping with him, it felt weird not having Tae wrapped around him like some sort of blanket.

Jungkook huffs a breath to push Taehyung's hair away from the tip of his nose and keeps on stroking the small of Tae's back. He's wearing one of Jungkook's hoodies because No, Tae, these robes are pretty and all but they don't keep people warm and that's it. Jungkook's not gonna lie, he just likes having Tae in his clothes. And in the same way, he likes wearing Taehyung's clothes (more like his expensive shirts).

“You know,” Taehyung mumbles without opening his eyes. “We gotta start working on the exhibition for real. We have to go and see the gallery, decide on what kind of concept we want.”

“We'll do that.” Jungkook heaves a sigh. “Although, I might leave it all to you.”

“Fuck you, you're gonna help. We also have to start choosing the photos you want to show, then get them printed. I know a good store, they make amazing prints.”

“'K, we'll deal with that tomorrow.”

Taehyung hums, nuzzling his cheek on Jungkook's chest. “Kookie?”

“Mmh?”

“I meant it when I said it.”

Jungkook frowns. “Said what?”

“You know.” Taehyung shifts a bit, he looks slightly uncomfortable. “What I said that night. When you found me.”

Jungkook's frown only deepens.

“Just,” Taehyung groans and looks up at him. “You know I love you, right?”

Oh.

Fuck.

Shit, wait.

No, he doesn't know. He seriously doesn't know.

“You do?” Jungkook asks and he's genuinely asking, because what the fuck?

Taehyung nods slowly. “Yeah. I do. I mean, it's- I'm learning to.”

“Learning.”

“I'm falling in love with you and I'm learning to love you.” he pauses. “I'm learning the way you should be loved.”

Now, Jungkook knows the rules of any manual of “How to know when a love confession is real 101 – For Beginners”. You don't believe it if the other person is drunk, you don't believe it if it's said during sex, you don't believe it if it's during a goddamn emotional and nervous breakdown.

But now Taehyung isn't any of those things. At the most, he's just a bit sleepy, which isn't something that is included in the manual.

So Jungkook doesn't have any excuses not to believe Taehyung this time.

“You do?” he asks again, this time a bit quieter.

Taehyung smiles and then settles his head back on his chest. “I do. Also, what I said about me not being the perfect boyfriend? I meant that as well. I may not be a perfect boyfriend but I could be a decent one.”

Jungkook nods whilst his head is kind of replaying the whole “I'm falling in love with you” part.

“Since I could be a decent boyfriend,” Taehyung continues. “You should ask me.”

“Ask you?”

“To be your boyfriend.”

What the actual hell is even going on at this point.

“You want to be my boyfriend?”

“Do you?” Taehyung asks. “Want me to, I mean.”

“I- well, yeah.”

“Okay.” Taehyung chuckles because clearly the dickhead is amused meanwhile Jungkook is this close to have an emotional breakdown. “Good talk, boyfriend.”

“Yeah.” Jungkook swallows hard. “Good. Good talk. It was, yeah. Quality talk.”

Taehyung snorts. “Don't ruin your brain thinking about it now, just get to sleep.”

“Yeah.” Jungkook almost chokes on his spit. “Right.”

Taehyung chuckles, squeezing him a bit harder. “You're so fucking cute.”

Oh God, Jungkook is going to die.



 


 

 



In a way, Jungkook was expecting this. At the same time, he wasn't ready.

“I want an open bar there.” Taehyung says, pointing at a corner of the huge empty room without even looking at it, still taking photos of the space with his phone.

“An- an open bar?” Lee Bo-Ra is the owner of the gallery that, as Taehyung said, has been kissing Tae's ass for a while so that they could host an exhibition with his works. The man is staring at Taehyung with large eyes, hidden behind thick glasses, he wears his fifty years well but he's also quite shocked by the younger's behavior.

“Yeah, over there as I said.” Taehyung squints his eyes and looks at the white tall panels that are scattered around the large room. “Those can be moved around, yes?”

“I- yes.”

“Good.”

“Kim-ssi, you said you want an open bar?”

Taehyung nods and turns to him. “Yes, why?”

“Well, we'll have a catering company for the buffet, obviously, but- an open bar?”

“People are more willing to buy if they're drunk.” Taehyung says with a shrug of his shoulders, Lee Bo-Ra seems kind of convinced and kind of really fucking confused. Jungkook can't blame him.

Taehyung turns to him with a smile. “What do you think, Jungkookie?”

“Uh?”

“The gallery. You like it?”

“Yeah.” Jungkook swallows, suddenly feeling like a literal fish out of the water. “It's a good place.”

“It is.” Taehyung agrees. “If the panels can be moved then it would be great. About the lights, can they be less bright?”

“The lights can be adjusted, yes.” Bo-Ra replies.

Taehyung hums. “And when it comes to the cost?”

“I'm sure we can arrange a price that would suit both of us.”

“Three of us.” Taehyung corrects the man. “Jungkook as well.”

“The three of us.”

“This gallery isn't really well known, is it?”

“It isn't.” Bo-Ra admits, clearly catching on. Taehyung is doing him a favor, giving this gallery the chance of exposing his works.

Jungkook is not going to lie: Taehyung is scary when he's working. Or making business. Or whatever this is. He's straightforward, gets what he wants quickly, knows how to play you so that he gets the best outcome. That's why Jungkook has been mostly quiet for the entire time, leaving Taehyung to do most of the work. Taehyung didn't seem bothered by it, though, as he immediately started measuring the place, taking videos and photos of it, all of this as he keeps the conversation going smoothly with Lee.

The gallery itself is quite beautiful. It's a large space, probably used to be a loft once, with an upper balcony that follows the walls, large enough for a good number of people to walk on it without it being too cramped. It's also in a good part of the city, close to the Dongdaeum Design Plaza.

“Well, then I guess we'll keep in touch.” Taehyung puts his phone back in the pocket of his jeans and bows to Lee Bo-Ra. “We'll work together nicely.”

“We will. I will call you in a few days to meet again and get rid of the most bureaucratic matters?”

“That sounds good, Lee-ssi.”

Jungkook bows to the man as well. “Let's work well together.”





Once they're outside, Taehyung lets out a long sigh. “That man will skin me alive.”

Jungkook frowns. “What do you mean?”

“He's gonna ask me for a shitload of money.” Taehyung clicks his tongue. “I can't even ask him to sponsor us, he just started and I'm expensive.”

“Then why don't we look for another place?”

“Nah, this place is perfect. You'll see, it's going to be good.” Taehyung grins. “We still have to choose your photos and get them printed, but we have time.”

“I might want to take some more photos, actually.”

“Of me?”

“Of you as well.”

He has material, sure, but he wants more. He's just starting to feel more confident with his work and he feels like he's starting to know how to get actually good shots of Taehyung.

“Wanna go on a date?”

Jungkook tripes on his own feet and almost falls face first on the sidewalk.

“Excuse me?”

Taehyung shrugs. “You don't wanna?”

“I didn't say that.” Jungkook feels Taehyung's fingers brush against his own, so he intertwines them together and lets Tae happily sway their arms back and forth. “Wasn't expecting that, is all.”

“We never went on a date. We kind of skipped those and went straight to the fucking, which isn't really how it works.” Taehyung smiles at him. “I want to take you on a date.”

Kim Taehyung, ladies and gentlemen, one moment he's having a mental breakdown over which of his pairs of Gucci slippers he should wear (also, they both look literally the same), the moment after he's asking you out on a date.

“Okay.” Jungkook manages. “Take me on a date.”

“Great!” Taehyung starts swinging their arms between them. “Come pick me up at 7 tomorrow night.”

“We live next to each other, what even-”

“Did I stutter? No. So come pick me up at 7.”







Jungkook is okay with it. He likes going along with Taehyung's antics, whatever they may be, so sure; he'll pick him up at 7, tell him he looks good, if he had a car he'd probably open the door for him and all that.

So he puts on some decent clothes (no oversized white t-shirts since Taehyung hates his aesthetic), shrugs on his best coat and a soft scarf since it's getting colder and colder as the days go by and when the clock strikes 7 P.M., Jungkook leaves his house, closes the door, takes five steps to get to Taehyung's flat and knocks on his door.

It opens immediately, with Taehyung already having his own coat on and a white beanie with a goddamn pon pon on top.

“I was not waiting by the door.” Taehyung says, Jungkook nods.

“I- sure.”

Taehyung exits the house, closes the door behind him and grins, looking so fucking gorgeous that Jungkook forgets to breathe for a few seconds.

“You look good.” he manages to say, Taehyung's eyes grow a little wide and an amused smile stretches his lips.

“Oh my God, are you gonna do all the date rules?”

“Yeah?”

“I love it. Keep doing that.”

“If I had a car I'd open the door for you and everything.”

“I am swooning, Jungkook. You're sweeping me off my feet.” Taehyung grabs his hand and they start walking to the elevator.

“We're already holding hands? This is our first date.”

Taehyung rolls his eyes. “Didn't hear you complaining when I had your cock in my mouth yesterday.”

“We weren't on our first date yesterday.”

“I wanna hold your hand, though.” Taehyung has the audacity to pout. “Let's break a few of those rules. We can hold hands.”

“What about the whole kissing on the first date rule?”

Taehyung snorts. “I don't know this rule you talk about, I will kiss the everloving shit out of you if this date goes well.” Taehyung then looks at Jungkook's chest. “You're bringing your camera.”

“Ah, yeah.” Jungkook glances at the camera, well protected in its case, hanging from his neck but hidden under the coat. “Thought I could maybe take some photos.”

“The place where I'm taking you has a really nice aesthetic. You'll love it.” Taehyung happily walks into the elevator, Jungkook follows him. “Also, we have to take the bus and you know how much I love taking the bus.”

“Yeah.” Jungkook replies, smiling, fondness feeling so fucking solid in his chest. “I know.”







Jungkook can't say he's surprised when he finds out that Taehyung brought him to a Coffee Shop.

“How more hipster can you get?” Jungkook mutters as they walk inside, a bell chiming above their heads when the door opens.

“This is my favorite Coffee Shop, I catch you disrespecting it and you will catch these hands.”



Jungkook has to admit that the place is quite beautiful. It's warm inside, large and spacious, a beautiful wooden counter with cakes and muffins displayed under bell jars, on the other side of the room there are round tables of light wood and each one has its own semi-circular couch, the seats made of faux dark blue leather, with a few pillows scattered around. Taehyung sits happily on the one that is the furthest from the door, patting the space next to him as he starts taking off his beanie.

“You were right, this place is nice.”

“I love it so much.” Taehyung sighs, he shrugs off his coat and scarf. “And they have really good food, too. The Caprese cake they make is delicious.”

“How do you even know this place? You haven't been in Seoul for long and, well, we kinda have been spending most of the time together or with the others.”

“I come here to sketch sometimes, especially when you were still in college, really early in the morning. If I know that there will be good food I can wake up at dawn.”



Taehyung is right, the Caprese cake is delicious, chocolate melting on his tongue and the canned pears on its side are tasty and sweet.

It feels nice, Jungkook thinks, sitting with Taehyung in one of his favorite places. Taehyung looks at ease and comfortable, sitting on the couch with his mug of cinnamon tea cradles in his hands as he talks about this books he's been reading lately.

“Seriously. Best trilogy ever. Character development on point, plot twists that leave you questioning life, slowest slow burn in the history of slow burns. You hate Laurent with every fiber of your being but the moment you find out why he did what he did you just want to cover him in blankets and protect him from the entire world.”

Taehyung likes to rant about things he likes, Jungkook knows this, but when it comes to books it becomes even more passionate, a sea of hurried words and praises or critics, all said with that focused frown of his, lips a little pouty. Jungkook could listen for hours, being whipped as he is. But, God, he could. He might be willing to sell his soul if that meant he gets to listen to Taehyung's rants and voice for the rest of his life.

“What's with that face?” Taehyung suddenly asks him.

“Face?”

“You're smiling weirdly.”

Jungkook knows he's smiling, he's been smiling since Tae started talking. “I just like listening to you.”

Taehyung presses his lips together, clearly trying to keep a smile to himself. “Oh, shut up, you can be so fucking cheesy sometimes.”



They keep chatting, Taehyung orders another cup of tea, this one smells sweeter than the other and it's red in the mug. There's music playing in the Coffee Shop but Jungkook can barely hear it, too fucking lost in this small bubble that seems to be around them.

God, he gets lost so easily in Taehyung.

As the time goes by, Jungkook also took out his camera, snapped a photo of a couple sitting at the nearby booth, she's reading a book whilst he's typing something on his laptop, but they're both holding hands and smiling to themselves.

Then he starts taking photos of Taehyung. He does it as they speak, Jungkook tries to capture the small emotions on Taehyung's features as he tells him something or his immediate reaction to a question.

And Taehyung looks beautiful in the warm lights of the shop, his elbow on the seatback of the couch, head tilted to the side, temple against his knuckles, long fingers relaxed along the curve of his cheek.

“You know,” Taehyung suddenly says, serious. “I'm glad I'm here with you.”

Jungkook's finger twitches over the shutter release. “You are?”

Taehyung hums. “It's weird.”

“What is?”

“Being here. Having this.” Taehyung blinks, his eyes get a bit dazed, like he's suddenly lost in his thoughts.

Jungkook takes a photo and the sound brings Taehyung's attention back to him. “Having what?”

“This.” Taehyung repeats, he looks at the camera as he speaks. “This city. My friends. Having Jimin again after so long. Having you. And what you give me.” Taehyung takes a deep breath. “I would have never thought I could have had something like this when I ran away from Paris.”

Jungkook blinks. “Ran away.”

“Left.” Taehyung corrects, Jungkook doesn't miss the way his jaw clenches slightly. “When I left Paris.”

Jungkook doesn't say anything for a few moments, then, “But you're glad?”

“I am.” he doesn't smile but Jungkook can see in his eyes that he's not lying.

“Tae.”

“Mmmh?”

“I really love you.”

The smile that blooms on Taehyung's face is a slow process but Jungkook is so grateful he gets to witness it; the faint flush on his cheeks, his eyes lighting up and then his lips slowly curling up until it takes over his features, eyes squinting lightly, cheekbones high. It's like watching a flower open its petals as the sun comes out.



 


 

 



Jungkook wakes up in an empty bed but he can smell something cooking in the kitchen. He groans and ruffles his hair, knowing that it's probably a mess and he starts getting on his feet. He finds his sweater thrown on the floor and puts it on quickly, then makes his way to the kitchen with his eyes still half-closed.

As he walks he can hear a song playing, getting clearer as he gets closer to the kitchen. Once he's in front of it he's met with the sight of Taehyung making eggs and shaking his butt to Age of Consent by New Order.

“Why are you so awake?” Jungkook grumbles, Taehyung turns to him startled but then he starts. “dancing” again.

“I like this song a lot!”

“Good to know.”

I understood every word that it saiiid!” Taehyung sings, too fucking loud for Jungkook's still sleepy mind. “And now that I've actually heard it, you're going to regret!”

“What are you cooking?”

“Eggs! 'Cause that's all I have in the fridge.” Taehyung gets back to the pan, a spatula in his hand.

Jungkook leans against the kitchen island, right behind his too awake boyfriend, who keeps humming to the song.

“Are you listening to the radio?” he asks, Taehyung shakes his head.

“This is an old playlist of mine. There's a bunch of random songs in it.”

Jungkook makes a sound of acknowledgment, his fall on the slope of Taehyung's nape, this particular silk robe he's wearing has such a deep cut, Jungkook can see the beginning of his shoulder blaze. So much fucking exposed skin. Too much for his poor sleepy mind.

Before he can stop himself he moves so that he can wrap his arms around Taehyung's waist, he drops a kiss on his shoulder and Taehyung giggles.

“You're domestic when you're sleepy.”

Jungkook slides his hand past the robe so that he can graze more skin, the pads of his fingers brush against Taehyung's nipple and he feels him shudder.

“You might wanna turn off the stove.” he murmurs against his neck.

“I'm good at multi-tasking.”

“Fuck no, you aren't.”

“Okay, you're right, I'm not.” Taehyung quickly turns off the fire and spins around with a pleased smile and Jungkook kind of wants to kiss it.

So he does, because he can, because this his boyfriend and yeah, he still can't believe it.

Taehyung hums into the kiss, his arms resting on each of Jungkook's shoulders. Jungkook moves them so that he has Taehyung's back against the kitchen island, his hands slide down to his ass and that's when he hoists him up, Taehyung shrieks for a moment before he's sitting on the counter, a breathless laugh leaving his mouth.

“Warn a guy.”

Jungkook shrugs and then Taehyung leans down to kiss him again, his legs wrapping easily around Jungkook's waist and pulling him a bit closer, the song ends and another one starts, it's slower and with more mellow tunes, kind of poppy maybe? Jungkook is sure he heard it before but he's too busy palming Taehyung's thigs, kneading the flesh and licking into Taehyung's mouth, the kiss turning from slow and sleepy to needy and heated quickly, as it always happens.

Then suddenly Taehyung pulls away and, at full volume, he shouts. “TAKE ME TO YOUR FUCKING ARMS!”

Jungkook snorts, quickly dissolving into laughter because the song that's playing is Thinking Out Loud by fucking Ed Sheeran but Taehyung sang it like fucking Nickelback, because that's a fucking VINE.

“Oh my God-” Jungkook wheezes. “I hate you! I hate you so bad!”

“I'm hilarious. And you love me.”

“No, you ruined the mood so badly, I utterly despise you.”

Taehyung pouts. “No. You love me.”

Jungkook sighs, plants a quick kiss on Tae's lips. “Of course I do.”

“Yeah, of course you do.” Taehyung smiles. “Now, we were in the middle of something, if I remember correctly.”

“Want us to move to a bed. Or a couch.”

“I'm comfortable here.”

“I'm not having sex with you where we eat breakfast. That's just not gonna happen.”

Taehyung rolls his eyes. “Fine, whatever, bed. Wait- wall.”

Jungkook frowns. “What?”

“You said you could fuck me against a wall.” Taehyung licks his lips, his eyes suddenly ten shades darker. “I want you to fuck me against a wall.”

God, yes.

“Do you have lube on you?”

“Ah, shit, no.”

“Okay, let's go get it.” Jungkook sweeps Taehyung off the counter and holds him up by his legs, the other laughing breathily at this and clinging to him.

“This is both funny and hot at the same time.”

“Glad I'm making your morning nice.” Jungkook says as he walks back to the bedroom. He has a feeling he could let go of Taehyung and he'd still be hanging off him judging by how tight his legs are around his waist and his arms around his neck. Like some sort of Panda.

Jungkook spots the lube on the bedside table and he grabs it, finding out that Taehyung is indeed clinging to his body like his life depends on it. “Get off me for a moment, get on the bed.”

“No! Wall!”

“Later. Come on, it's hard to prep you like this, want me to twist an elbow or something?”

“Fine.” Taehyung huffs before he lets go of Jungkook and gets on his feet. But that's also when a sparkle of mirth can be seen in Taehyung's eyes, a lazy smirk curling his lips. “Come here. On the bed.”

Jungkook lets Taehyung pull him onto the mattress and then coaxing him into a sitting position, his back against the wall, pillows digging uncomfortably onto his lower back. Taehyung settles on his lap, fingers grazing Jungkook's neck in teasing touches.

“Want me to put up a show for you, mh?” Taehyung asks, his head tilting just lightly to the side.

“A show?” Jungkook asks, feeling more than interested, his hand goes to rest on Taehyung's hip but he swats it away.

“Rule number one is: no touching.” Taehyung licks his lips. “Wanna watch me as I prep myself?”

Fuck.

Jungkook lets out a shuddering breath, feels his cock twitch in his sweats at the idea.

“Wanna see me as I open myself up?” Taehyung shifts his hips slowly, his buttocks dragging against Jungkook's hardening dick. “Fuck myself with my fingers so that I can take your cock later, would you like to see that?”

“Yeah.” Jungkook swallows, his hands itching already to get a feeling of Taehyung's smooth skin.

“Okay, baby.” Taehyung swipes his thumb over Jungkook's bottom lip, grins at him cocky and so full of confidence. Taehyung always wears confidence so well. “Just sit there and enjoy the view, mh?”

Taehyung spins around, settles his knees on each side of Jungkook's thighs and then unties the silk belt of the robe. He strips of it as well, making a show of how the silk falls so smoothly down his skin. Jungkook looks a little in awe at the broad expanse of Taehyung's back, narrowing to his slim waist, his skin so gold it looks like a miracle. Jungkook always thought Taehyung glows the most in the morning.

Taehyung grabs the bottle of lube, uncaps it and quickly squeezes some on his fingers, rubbing them together before he gets on his hands and knees, ass up high, back arched, just 'cause he knows he looks fucking gorgeous like this.

“Tae-”

“Sssh.” Taehyung parts his legs more, reaches back and rubs the pads of his lubed fingers along his rim. “Told you to just enjoy it, baby.”

Taehyung pushes the first finger inside slowly, the muscles of his thighs clenching for a moment before he eases to the feeling, letting out a soft breath.

Jungkook keeps quiet, sitting and fighting off the urge to just touch, to caress Taehyung's hips or knead at the flesh of his ass, holding his breath as Taehyung works another finger in.

“Can't- can't wait for you to fuck me.” Taehyung says, moaning when he starts scissoring his fingers. “Want you to fuck me so hard I feel it for days.”

Jungkook groans, his hand squeezing around the base of his cock through the sweatpants. “Shit, Tae.”

“Enjoying the view?” Taehyung asks, his hips bucking up ever so gently with each thrust of his fingers.

“Wanna touch you.”

Taehyung hums. “So fuh-fucking eager, pretty. Always wanna take more than what hyung gives you.”

This is either the best thing to ever happen in Jungkook's life or the worst fucking torture. He can't decide. He's just so hard and overwhelmed with how good Taehyung looks and sounds, now fucking himself with his fingers faster, legs shaking slightly.

Taehyung adds a third finger, hissing at the feeling but Jungkook can see Taehyung's cock twitching between his parted legs. Jungkook moans at the sight, his own dick throbbing.

“You like that?” Taehyung asks, hips shifting.

“Yeah.”

Taehyung's entire body shudders suddenly, a high moan leaving his lips. “Oh, fuck, that felt good.”

Jungkook wants to see Taehyung's face, he knows how he looks when he finds a good spot deep inside, he loves the flush of Taehyung's cheeks when wracks of pleasure twist his features, but he has a feeling he'll get slapped if he dares to move from his current position.

“Take these off.” Taehyung says, tugging at the leg of Jungkook's sweats, he pulls out his fingers and turns around. “Want your cock, 'm not patient enough today.”

Jungkook feels his mouth run dry when Taehyung's eyes settle on him, dark and hungry, lips shiny and swollen, he was probably biting them.

Jungkook quickly shrugs his pants off and Taehyung's lubed hand curls around his cock, coating it with the slick substance in lazy strokes.

“Here, baby.” Taehyung pats on the spot next to Jungkook's. “Legs off the bed.”

Jungkook does as he's told and Taehyung climbs back on his lap, reaches back to secure Jungkook's dick in his hand before he starts sliding down on it. Jungkook's hands go to Taehyung's buttocks, squeezing the flesh and pushing him down further, getting deeper in Taehyung's ass with a broken moan.

“Yeah, like that.” Taehyung murmurs when he bottoms out. “Always sound so pretty, baby. Can you lift me up?”

Jungkook nods, Taehyung drops a quick kiss on his lips before he hooks his legs around Jungkook's waist, arms wrapped around his neck.

Jungkook starts getting up, lifting Taehyung with him, hands gripping hard Taehyung's buttocks to be sure he doesn't drop him 'cause, God, that would definitely ruin the mood.

Oh, God-” Taehyung clenches around him and Jungkook almost loses his balance. “Fuck, you're in so deep.”

“You good?”

“Mmh.” Taehyung noses along Jungkook's temple. “Come on, fuck me against the wall.”

Jungkook gets closer to the wall and pins Taehyung against him, lifting him a bit higher and feeling less of the weight now that Taehyung has his back against the cool surface. He takes one last look at Tae's face, finds him with his eyes hooded and lips slack, then he thrusts his hips up and Taehyung moans so richly and prettily-

“Good-” Taehyung says, eyes falling closed. ”So good, fuck hyung harder, pretty.”

Jungkook fucks into him deeper. “Make it hurt?”

“Yeah, make it hurt. You always make it hurt so good, come on.”

Something just switches in Jungkook when he hears that. God, he loves fucking Taehyung slowly, having him turn so pliant in his arms, especially in the mornings, but there's still nothing that compares to when Taehyung is in control and demands it fast and rough and good enough to hurt.

Jungkook lifts Taehyung up and then pushes him down as he thrusts up, fucking into him fast, Taehyung cries out and his legs squeeze tighter around Jungkook's waist.

“You're so-” Jungkook mouths along the line of Taehyung's throat. “So fucking tight and pretty.”

All Taehyung gives him as an answer is a broken sound, his voice uneven. God, he looks so good like this, bouncing on his cock and moaning so loudly, Taehyung's dick hard and leaking where it rubs against Jungkook's stomach.

When Jungkook starts biting and sucking on his neck Taehyung whimpers, his arms tighten around Jungkook's shoulders and he starts working his hips as Jungkook fucks into him.

“I feel so good, pretty, you're- fuck, you're making me feel so good.” Taehyung opens his eyes, wet and dark. “You feel guh-good, baby?”

“Yeah.” Jungkook moans, his arms aching under Taehyung's weight but he still keeps rocking his hips, fucking into the tight heat of Taehyung's ass, feeling already so close to his orgasm. “Taehyung.”

“Yeah, like that.” Taehyung growls, Jungkook shudders. “'m so close, make me cum.”

Jungkook presses his lips to Taehyung's mouth, the other moans and lets Jungkook take control of the kiss, lets him lick into his mouth and, really, Jungkook knows that this is just an illusion of power, it's a power that Taehyung is letting him have and fuck, if that doesn't make a mess of him.

He feels Taehyung's cock twitching against his stomach, the kiss turns sloppier and Taehyung's legs quiver, so he pulls back and tugs on Taehyung's bottom lip.

“God, I-” Jungkook forces the words out in between the haze of his head. “I fucking love you so much.”

Taehyung's eyes shut close and he cums on Jungkook's stomach, his body spasming for a few seconds and arching off the wall. At the clenching of his ass, Jungkook can barely thrust up two more times before he's cumming as well, spilling inside Taehyung, almost losing the grip he has on Tae's body.

“Fuck.” Taehyung presses his forehead in the crook of Jungkook's neck. “God bless walls, Kookie.”

“I'm about to drop you, shit.”

Taehyung quickly lets his legs fall from Jungkook's hips and he manages to get on his feet, the weight disappearing from Jungkook's arms as he lets out a shaky breath.

“My back hurts.”

Jungkook looks at him and then pulls Tae away from the wall by a few inches, looking over his shoulder. “Skin's a little red.”

“Not surprised. Ain't complaining.” Taehyung chuckles weakly. “I need to lie down.”

Jungkook needs to lie down as well. God, Jungkook needs a fucking coffin or something as he is close to death.

“You're heavier than you look.” he says as he moves back to the bed, pulling Tae with him.

“Fuck off, you lift me like I'm a leaf.” Taehyung drops on the mattress as soon as it's close enough, Jungkook lays next to him.

“Yeah, well, when I usually lift you I'm not also fucking you, so.”

“Right, sorry, had I known you were such an old man I wouldn't have asked you to give me the dicking of a lifetime.” Taehyung scoots closer to Jungkook, already making it clear that it's time for cuddles.

“You know, for someone who was begging me to do the whole wall-sex thing you sure whine a lot.” Jungkook cards his fingers through the mess that has become of Taehyung's hair. “I gotta clean you up, don't get too comfy.”

“Mmh.” Taehyung kisses his cheek then rests his head on Jungkook's chest, arms easily wrapping around the younger's waist. “Five minutes.”

“'k.”

“Hey.”

“Mmh?”

“Say it again?”

Jungkook feels his lips curl up, he tucks some hair behind Taehyung's ear. “I love you so fucking much.”

Taehyung sighs, he's smiling faintly, the back of his fingers brushing along Jungkook's jawline. “Don't you hate it?”

“What?”

“Me asking you to tell me you love me but not saying it back.”

Jungkook presses his lips on Taehyung's shoulders, feeling the skin warm. “No. I'm fine with waiting. I'd rather wait years and hear you say you love me when you really are.”

“I kind of already am.”

“Kind of. That's the thing.” Jungkook shrugs. “I'll wait as long as it takes.”

“Won't be too long.” Taehyung says, Jungkook can hear the smile in his voice. “I know it won't.”





 


 





Taehyung is scary. Downright fucking scary when he's in his element.

They're back at the gallery, Jungkook is kind of trying to hide even though there's nowhere to hide behind, so he's resorted to making himself as small as possible and flush against a free wall.

Taehyung isn't exactly barking orders at the staff that is working on the equipment and props but he's being strict as hell, authoritative and snapping photos of everything.

Admittedly, Jungkook has no idea whatsoever of what is going on. Just that Taehyung already finalized all the “bureaucratic shit”, as he calls it, and as far as Jungkook's concerned that's also half of his job done for now since he put his money into that “bureaucratic shit” as well.

Lee Bo-Ra looks, quite frankly, alarmed, but he keeps quiet and lets Taehyung do his thing. Jungkook has a feeling that not even the bravest man in the world would try to put himself between Tae and his work right now.

Jungkook takes his phone out of the pocket of his coat and starts typing a quick message.





KOOK

Tae is scary when he works, hyung



Smol Hyung

LMAO

not surprised



KOOK

not helping me, Jimin-hyung



Smol Hyung

What do u want me to do??

Go there and sing you a lullaby and light up Yankee candles?



KOOK

I don't need the sass thats for sure

whatevs, you up for lunch later?



Smol Hyung

sure

bring Tae, I'll bring Yoongi

Double date <3



KOOK

ew

see you later





Jungkook locks his phone screen and when he looks up he's met with Taehyung's face very close to his.

“How's it going?” he asks.

“Here, come here.” Taehyung gestures at him and then simply grabs Jungkook's arm, pulling him forward, he then walks and stands behind him. “Try to imagine it.”

Jungkook frowns. He sees that the white panels have been moved around in the large room, but it's almost as if there's too much white and everything blurs together.

“I don't know what I'm supposed to look at.”

“It's all in diagonals, you see?” Taehyung says. “The panels, I mean, I put them all in diagonals.”

Jungkook squints his eyes and, yeah, he can see that now. All the panels are tilted so that they're not standing frontal to them, put in a way that makes it so that the viewer can see the panel behind the first line, and those behind the second line and so on.

“It could be like this,” Taehyung whispers. “My paintings on one panel, on the next one it's your photos, then on the one next to the other one my works again. And then, in the line behind, the first panel has one of your photos, the one in the middle a painting, the third one on the right another one of your photos.”

“Oh.” Jungkook nods. “Yeah, that could work. It repeats for each line, right?”

“Yeah, three panels each line.”

“And upstairs?”

“You took photos of me whilst I worked. Put those up there, I'll put my sketches there 'cause lots of them are about you.”

Taehyung still hasn't shown him the sketches. Says that it's a surprise.

“The lights will be dimmed lower than this.” Taehyung adds. “Just a bit.”

“Yeah.” Jungkook can't help but smile, his heart pounding in his chest. “Yeah, I can see it now.”

Taehyung puts his chin on his shoulder. “Are you excited now?”

“Yes.” Jungkook finds Taehyung's hand, their fingers intertwining easily. “I am.”



 


 

 



Jungkook feels like he's allowed to say that he knows Yoongi fairly well by now.

Yoongi is a whole contradiction. He looks like he's made of porcelain but he could actually break you with just some words if he wanted to. Small but with shoulders broader than Jungkook's. Takes pride in his underground rapper aesthetic but once licked a bath bomb because he wanted to know if it tasted as nice as it smelled. Has large hands but touches everything and everyone he cares about like they could break at any moment. Looks so constantly bored by everything but lives and breathes his music. Loves to say that he really doesn't give a shit about anything but would burn the entire world to the ground if something happened to Jimin.

He's that kind of guy, enough contradictions and layers that could make you drown.

Jimin says that's why he loves Yoongi that much.

Since Jungkook knows Yoongi, he also knows that if Yoongi takes him out for lunch (he's buying him Sushi, for crying out loud) then it means that he either has something to tell him or wants Jungkook to tell him something.

“Stop looking so fucking scared.” Yoongi suddenly says, his eyes set on the roller where different plates with varieties of sushi slowly move by them.

Yoongi always sits right next to the roller and Jungkook never saw him move as fast as he does when he has to grab one of those damn plates.

“Not scared?”

“You look stiff as fuck.” Yoongi squints his eyes when a salmon Nigiri appears at the end of the roll.

“You usually take me out for lunch when you have something to tell me and, I'll be honest, it rarely is good news.”

“Nonsense.” Yoongi licks his lips. “I just wanna buy you sushi and chat with you. Grab me that roll.”

“Roll?”

“The one with the cheese cream and salmon.”

Jungkook twists around and spots the plate. He grabs it before it moves too far and puts it in front of Yoongi, then sees some salmon Nigiri coming his way and he takes that as well.

As he dips his food in soy sauce, Jungkook watches Yoongi in the process of scooping a small amount of wasabi and then put it on his roll, smearing it around. He still doesn't know how the fuck Yoongi manages to eat that stuff, it tastes like battery's acid.

“How's the exhibit coming along?” Yoongi asks before he swallows the whole roll and he chews happily.

“We found a good place. Well, Tae found the place. He's scary when he's in the zone.”

Yoongi hums. “He's always scary when he does something he's confident about. You should've seen him in the school's choir back in Highschool.”

“He used to sing?”

“Snatched every single solo. The whole choir hated him.”

Jungkook smiles. He can imagine it, he can totally picture Taehyung singing his heart out and getting everything he wanted without even really trying. That's just how it is when it comes to anything, unless it's his own art.

It's at Yoongi's fourth serving of rolls that he speaks up. “You doing good, Kook-ah?”

“Mh?” Jungkook perks up, his mouth full of tuna.

“Just- Fuck it, you know me, I'm not good at beating around the bush.” Yoongi puts his chopsticks down on the table, which is all kinds of red flags. “Jimin mentioned me you're having issues.”

“Oh.”

“Don't be mad at him.”

“No, I'm not.” No one in his sane mind would harbor any kind of negative feelings regarding Jimin when Yoongi exists and could and would ruin you if he knew.

“He didn't tell me what's wrong. He just told me something's up, and that's because I asked him.”

“You asked him?”

Yoongi nods. “You ain't that slick, you know? I know you, kid, that whole deal at the club? That's not you.”

Jungkook sighs, slumping in the chair. He doesn't have a problem with telling Yoongi, not at all. He trusts the man and he feels completely at ease with him.

“I've been dealing with stuff. Loneliness. Feeling empty. Stuff like that.”

“Mh.”

“I'm good, really. I mean, sometimes I'm shit, but I'm doing something I really love lately. So it's better.”

“And you're doing it with someone you love, I'm guessing.”

Jungkook groans at the knowing look in Yoongi's eyes. “Is it really that obvious?”

“Told you, you ain't slick.” Yoongi, without even looking at the roller beside him, grabs a serving of Uramaki and puts it in front of him. “So? You guys are in love?”

“Something like that, I think?” Jungkook fidgets a bit with a napkin.

“I'm glad you told me what's wrong, kid.” Yoongi says, gives him a small smile. “You know that if you need someone to talk to you can give hyung a call, right? I'll listen to you, buy you some skewers and everything.”

“I know, hyung.” Goddamnit, Jungkook is so fond of Yoongi it's unreal. “Thank you.”

Yoongi waves a hand at him and grabs his chopsticks again. “You know, Tae never dated in highschool.”

Jungkook frowns. “Really?”

“He used to meet with random dudes but it was never serious. Shit, I think that the most serious relationship he had in highschool was with Seokjin, and they were fuck-buddies.” Yoongi plops the Uramaki in his mouth and chews slowly before he speaks again. “I'm glad he has something stable with you. I've always been worried about him.”

Jungkook stops chewing around a mouthful of Bincho. When Yoongi notices his questioning gaze he just shrugs.

“Taehyung has his own issues. He always had them. Maybe something similar to you, maybe something more complicated, I don't know. He never told me anything, I never asked because even if you ask, Taehyung won't answer you if he doesn't like the question. But he used to drop by my house when we were younger, even in the middle of the night, and just ask me to make him listen to some music.”

Jungkook lets a few seconds of silence go by before he speaks again. “Music? That's all he wanted?”

“Just music. Don't know if it did him any good, but I gave him what he wanted.”

“What music did you make him listen?”

“Lofi.” Yoongi replies. “Lofi hip-hop or jazz.”

Oh.

“It did him good.” he says. “It really did, hyung.”

Yoongi frowns but he nods anyway, focusing on the roller again, clearly waiting for something he likes. His eyes widen at the sight of a plate containing two Spider Rolls and he grabs it as soon as it's close enough.

They continue to eat in silence for a few minutes, Jungkook stuffs his belly with any kind of sashimi he manages to get his hands on, then Yoongi suddenly slams his chopsticks on the table loudly enough to make the younger jump.

“I'm going to ask Jimin to move in with me.” he blurts out, tripping on the words from how fast he's speaking.

Jungkook blinks. “Oh.”

“Yeah.”

“That's- wait, I'm confused, don't you already live together?”

Yoongi glares at him. “No, Kook-ah. He just likes to sleep over. I never asked him to, you know, live with me.” he lowers his eyes, pokes on his fish. “He'll say yes, right?”

Jungkook can't help but widen his eyes at this. “Hyung, are you worried Jimin won't accept?”

Yoongi shrugs.

“He'll say yes, hyung.” Jungkook sighs, a smile already curling up his lips. “He hates the Campus dorm but he loves you, it's not such a hard decision.”

Yoongi shifts in his seat, his shoulders sagging and Jungkook sighs.

“Hyung.”

“I know it's stupid.” Yoongi admits, wets his lips nervously. “But, you know, we- we've been together since my senior year in Highschool and we're good and everything, have our fights sometimes, then have make-up sex-”

“Please, don't say that ever again.”

“But,” Yoongi glares at him. “Living together is a whole different thing. What if he gets scared? I don't want him to feel uncomfortable and I don't want him to feel like he has to live with me.”

“Jesus, Yoongi-hyung, how are you even so damn oblivious?”

Yoongi points a chopstick at him. “Watch your fucking mouth, kid.”

“What I'm saying is,” Jungkook tries again, thinking very hard about the words he'll use unless he wants Yoongi to shove that chopstick up one of his nostrils. “Jimin-hyung loves you and he won't say no. He'll probably cry or something, he's an emotional mess when it comes to you.”

“He's beautiful and nowhere near being a mess, that would be me.”

“He loves you more than dance.”

Yoongi's mouth snaps shut and the chopstick falls off his hand. Jungkook can't help a pleased smirk at the soft flush that takes over Yoongi's cheeks, the man blinking slowly with huge eyes as he stares at him.

“So,” Jungkook grabs from the roller a serving of Tsubugai, puts it in front of Yoongi. “Eat up and prepare a decent romantic night so that you can ask him to live with you.”

Yoongi gives him a nod, movement a bit jerky, he stabs the fish with his chopstick and brings it to his mouth.

And with this, Jungkook's work is done for the day.







Two days later, Taehyung's phone rings and, okay, Jungkook might not be happy with it because they were cuddling, but okay. Sure.

“Jimin!” Tae exclaims when he picks up. “What's buttering your eggroll?”

“Jesus.” Jungkook wheezes and buries his face in Taehyung's stomach. His t-shirt smells of lavender.

“Woah, are you crying?” Taehyung stiffens beneath him and Jungkook looks up alarmed. “Hey, what's wrong? Who do I have to cut?” a pause. “What do you mean I can't cut anyone?! I may smile all the time, honey, but I got mean fucking back-hand and I'm not afraid to use it on someone's ugly ass!”

Isn't that a VINE?, Jungkook thinks to himself before he gets back to listening to the conversation.

“Oh.” Taehyung's eyes go the size of the moon. “He asked you?! To move in?! Shit! So it's happy tears!”

“Ah, I fucking knew he was going to cry.” Jungkook murmurs before going back to his previous spot on Taehyung's stomach.

“You said yes, right?!” silence for a second. “Jungkookie, he said yes!”

“Good.” Jungkook sighs. “C'mon, I wanna nap.”

“I'm coming over right now!” Taehyung suddenly rolls over, Jungkook's face falling against the mattress, he groans. “I'll be over in twenty! Stop crying, goddamn!”

“Where are you even going?” Jungkook murmurs against the sheets.

“At the café where Jimin is currently crying, he needs his best bitch, and that's me.”

“I need my best bitch, too.”

Taehyung slaps his thigh as he gets off the bed. “I am your boyfriend, you disrespectful child.”

“Jimin will be fine, just let him cry.”

“Jungkook.” Taehyung looks at him very seriously. “Bros before hoes.”

Then he runs off, grabbing his jacket.

“I am your boyfriend, not a hoe!”









The whole “boyfriend” thing is, to Jungkook, interesting. As nothing has really changed between them but at the same time everything kind of did. Maybe it's the way Taehyung holds his hand, with more certainty, perhaps it's how Taehyung sometimes looks at him with a small smile and warm eyes before he kisses him, or it could be in the long minutes of silence in which Taehyung has his eyes closed and his hands trace the curves of Jungkook's face, lips parted, hands memorizing. It could be one of these things.

Because changes are slow. Jungkook is glad he's noticing them.



When they get his photos printed (after three whole days of Jungkook sitting on the floor for hours, surrounded by his pictures, changing his mind minute by minute on which of them he should show to people), Taehyung doesn't speak for a long time.

He just stares at the larger prints, some of them have his face on them, others have scenes of lives that don't belong to Jungkook but that he still managed to steal in the moment the shutter closed.

They look good. The grain looks wonderful and it felt even better under his fingertips before he had the photos framed. Jungkook lights up a cigarette, Emilie stands up and jumps on the couch, sitting at a respectable distance from him. Jungkook is fine with it. That cat was there before him, so- baby steps.

“You know,” Taehyung suddenly says, still standing in front of the photos that Jungkook has put on the floor against the wall. “I love the way you see the world.”

“Oh.”

“In black and white. Or sepia.” Taehyung nods to himself. “I like it because that's not how you live. You may see it like that but you don't, you know, live like life is in black and white.”

Jungkook takes a drag of smoke. “I'm sensing a but.”

“But,” Taehyung adds. “I think I love the way you see me even more.”

Jungkook smiles a bit and scratches the tip of his nose. “Yeah?”

“You see me in black and white, with a pretty grain over my skin.” Taehyung turns to him, smiling as well. “And that's exactly how you love me. In black and white.”

Yeah.

Yeah, that's the only way Taehyung can be loved.

“You like that?”

“I do.” Taehyung moves, walks to the couch and easily settles on Jungkook's lap, stealing a quick kiss and then snatching the cigarette out of his fingers. “I really do.”







Jungkook doesn't realize he had a nightmare until he realizes that he's terrified of the darkness of the room in which he has just woken up.

“Fuck.” he murmurs, his throat feels dry, he tries to swallow but finds it hard, he's sweaty in a way that feels disgusting so he kicks the covers off.

He swings his legs off the bed and stares at the floor, passes a hand through the hair that has stuck to his forehead and he clears his voice, trying to get rid of the lump in his throat.

Fuck, it's too dark in the room, he doesn't like it.

Jungkook hears rustling behind him so he turns around, finds Taehyung moving on the bed, can make out his silhouette even when it's this dark.

“Kookie?”

“Hey.”

“What're you doin' up?” Taehyung slurs, clearly still half asleep.

“Just-” Jungkook shakes his head. “I'm fine, you just sleep, yeah?”

“But I can't sleep well without hugging you, y'know it.”

“Had a nightmare, it's fine.”

Taehyung slowly gets on his hands and knees and crawls over to where Jungkook's sitting.

“What did you dream about?” he asks, pressing his forehead against Jungkook's shoulder.

“I don't know.”

“You don't?”

“I mean, I couldn't see it. It was-” Jungkook sighs. “It was so dark.”

Taehyung hums, wraps his arms around his stomach and presses his lips to Jungkook's neck. “You had a nightmare about darkness?”

“I was alone in it.”

Taehyung takes a deep breath, arms tightening around him a bit. “Oh, baby.”

“And something was pressing against my chest.”

“You're okay, Jungkookie.”

“It wasn't that scary.” he says, puts his hand over Taehyung's. “I don't know why I'm so upset now, it wasn't that scary.”

“It was scary.” Taehyung retorts, his voice low and careful. “We know how scary it is to be lonely. But you aren't now, are you?”

Jungkook nods, twists his head a bit to the right so that he can look at Taehyung. “I'm not.”

“Come on then, back to sleep.”

Jungkook lets Taehyung pull him back on the mattress, he gets under the blankets again and Taehyung quickly gets his arms around him again.

“Kook.”

“Mmh?”

“Want me to turn on the light? Like, only the bedside lamp, it's not really bright. You want me to?”

Jungkook sighs. “Please.”

“Okay.” Taehyung rolls over the other side of the bed, he turns on the small lamp and a warm and dim light brightens up the room just a bit. Taehyung gets back to his previous position, a hand lazily carding through Jungkook's hair, his other one caressing his back. “There we go. You're alright.”

Jungkook breathes in deeply, gets accustomed to the warmth of Taehyung's body again even if his own skin feels as cold as ice and closes his eyes. “Thank you. For the light.”

“'s okay, Kookie.” Taehyung replies, his voice a low and slurred murmur, clearly he's already close to falling asleep again. “Nothing bad with being afraid of the dark.”

It's not the dark that he fears. He lied, he remembers his dream crystal clear: it was dark and Taehyung was there, too, right in front of him.

Until he wasn't anymore.



 


 

 



Jungkook isn't sure about many things in his life, but he sure as hell is when it comes to this particular thing: he is not moving away from the open bar. Uh huh, no thank you, he's fine here.

There are too many people. He wasn't expecting this amount of people for the opening night of the exhibit but maybe he should have. After all, Taehyung's name attracts both professionals and collectors and simply curious people, bored new riches who like to act like royalty or fake chic.

Still. He's not moving from the open bar.

“You should probably, you know-” Jimin, perched on a stool next to Jungkook's, gestures at the room. “Walk around? Isn't that what you do when you're holding an exhibition?”

“I'm staying here.” Jungkook mutters around his flute of champagne.

Yoongi, standing in front of Jimin, scoffs. “Jesus, kid.”

“Shush.”

“Did you just shush me, you fucking-”

“Babe, please.” Jimin sighs, holds Yoongi's hand. “Not now.”

Yoongi grumbles something under his breath, then settles between Jimin's parted legs, looking around.

Taehyung has disappeared in between the crowd, doing what any respectable artist would do, which is charming his way into making someone buy their work. Now, Jungkook has no doubt that Taehyung can and will do just that, but at the same time Jungkook is not a respectable artist. So yeah, open bar it is.

Namjoon and Hoseok come back from their tour around the exhibit, looking impressed.

“Your shit is good, Kook-ah.” Namjoon says as soon as he's close enough. “Really good.”

“Thank you, hyung.”

“No, really,” Hoseok huffs a breath. “I didn't think it was possible to make Taehyung look even better than he already is, what kind of witchcraft.”

“It's called photoshop.” Yoongi says, Jungkook sends him a glare.

“I didn't photoshop him. I just adjusted some lighting where it was necessary, but I didn't touch him.”

“It's not photoshop, babe.” Jimin says with a grin. “It's the power of love.”

“Want me to shove that glass up your ass?” Jungkook deadpans.

“Want me to just kill you, brat?” Yoongi retorts, with no bite in his voice. “Oh, here comes trouble.”

“Make it double.” Hoseok and Namjoon both say at the same time, sharing this fond as fuck look that makes Jungkook kind of want to puke in his expensive Champagne.

Taehyung walks straight to him and Jungkook can't help but sigh a bit. Taehyung looks so damn gorgeous tonight, wearing a loose dress-shirt but fitted trousers, those damn Gucci slippers and with gold powder smeared around his nose and cheeks like freckles.

“Honey.” Taehyung says with a sweet smile as soon as he's in front of Jungkook. “Please, tell me, what is it that you are wearing?”

Jungkook frowns. “Your... shirt?”

“What shirt?”

“The Valentino blouse?”

Taehyung hums. “And do you think I let you wear my favorite Valentino blouse just so that you could sit here and look pretty?”

A pause, then. “Yeah?” Jungkook regrets saying that as soon as Taehyung's eyes sharpen.

“If you don't get off this fucking stool right about now and go be a social butterfly, I will be mad. Do you want to see me mad?”

“No.” Hell no, he doesn't, he really doesn't.

“Then get. Off. That. Stool.” Taehyung grabs his wrist and pulls him off his seat. “And try to sell. Make daddy proud.”

“Oh my God.” Yoongi groans.

“Don't ever say that again.” Jungkook hisses before he turns and walks into the crowd.

He keeps it very low, just walks between the many people in the gallery, watches them as they admire the works that are neatly put on each of the white panels. There's a man staring with a focused frown at one of Taehyung's most recent works, an abstract design that looks like everything and nothing at the same time, the colors thick on the canvas and vibrant.

He spots a middle-aged woman standing in front of one of his photos and, after taking a breath, he walks over, keeping a discreet distance between himself and the woman.

She looks either rich or like she's good at pretending she is. Hair neatly tucked into a high bun, pretty earrings and elegant jewelry.

She notices him, gives him a quick glance, then looks back at the photo.

“It's good to see that young people still care about art.”

Jungkook blinks, realizes she's talking to him and clears his voice. “Pardon?”

“You rarely ever see young men like you at exhibitions or museums.” she nods at the photo. “Do you like this?”

Jungkook looks at the picture: Taehyung had just woken up when he took it, still so soft and sleepy, eyes unfocused, fingers curled in loose fists and one of Jungkook's shirts thrown over him like a blanket. There's the faint line of a smile forming on his lips.

“I do.” Jungkook finally says. “I like the person in the photo.”

She hums. “He's a beautiful man. But it's mostly thanks to the photo.”

“Is it?”

“It shows a lot, this photo. All kinds of fondness. Care.” she nods once more. “I like this a lot.”

Jungkook presses his lips together. “Thank you.”

The woman turns to him, a raised eyebrow. “Oh, you're a sly one.”

“I just don't know how to behave right now. It's the first time I- you know.”

“A newbie. And so good already?”

“Not that good.”

“How much?”

Ah, he knew that was coming.

“These aren't for sale.” Jungkook replies. “Not those that have him as the subject. Only the others.”

The woman smiles, looks back at the photo. “I see you're trying hard to keep him all for yourself.”

“That's not-”

“It is. I don't blame you. I, too, like to keep my pretty things mine.” she turns on her heels bows at Jungkook, who immediately bows back. “I'll go see if I like the other photos, then. Here.”

Jungkook frowns when the woman opens her purse, takes out a small ticket and hands it to him. “I'm a collector, but I wouldn't mind commissioning you something. We shall see, mh?”

“I- yes. Thank you!”

“Say hi to Taehyung for me.” She says and then and walks away.

She knows Taehyung? He never heard of a woman before.

Jungkook looks at the ticket in his hand and he can read a phone number, a mail address and a name: Kim Nari.

He guesses that could've gone worst, all things considered. After all, he didn't make a complete fool of himself.





Against all fucking odds, Jungkook sells. He actually sells stuff.

At the end of the night, when most people have already left, just a few other couples walking around, Jungkook and Taehyung are drinking by the open bar and Jungkook is kind of speechless.

“I have three commissioned portraits!” Jungkook exclaims, staring at his glass. “Like, people will pay me for those! And fucking tickets. A shit load of those, actually.”

“Should I act surprised?” Taehyung asks with a frown. “Always told you your works are good, so-”

“I know, but- like, most of my photos have you in them and those aren't for sale, so I'm surprised someone bought the others.” Jungkook grins. “How much did you sell?”

“A lot. But that's mostly because of luck. Since it's the first time I hold an exhibition in Seoul the collectors wanted to take advantage of it.” Taehyung sips his Champagne. “You know, someone tried to buy one of my sketches.”

“Which one?”

“The one about us. You said we were dancing in it.”

“Oh, that was for sale?”

“That's not for sale, but the man sure as hell wanted to convince me.” Taehyung looks at the room with a small smile. “I'll feel sad when the exhibit will be over next week and I'll have to part with what they bought.”

“Mmmh.”

“But then the cash will come and wow, who gives a shit anymore?”

“You're horrible.”

“Let's take a walk, mh?” Taehyung gets off the stool and holds out his hand. “Before we go home, I wanna walk around and see what we did.”

As they walk by the by now empty gallery, their steps echoing in the room, fingers intertwined, Jungkook can see it now. What they did.

They did art. Together.

“We look good.” Taehyung says as he stops in the middle of two panels, three of his watercolors displayed on the left one and Jungkook's photos of Taehyung when he posed for him in the street on the right panel. “Our art looks good together.”

“Yeah, it does.”

“I'm kind of really proud of us.”

“Fuck yeah. Oh, this woman gave me a ticket, told me to say hi to you.”

“Name?”

“Kim Nari.”

“Oh!” Taehyung looks at him with a smile. “She was here? And she didn't even come greet me properly? Sly fox.”

“How do you know her?”

“She's my first buyer! My first ever paid work was commissioned by her. She's a lovely woman, smart as hell, with a good eye for pretty things. And people. She has, like, five sugar babies or something.”

“Wow.”

“I know, right?”

Taehyung turns back to their works, a satisfied smile on his face. Jungkook thinks that this is how he should always look: proud of himself, content. Happy.

Just happy.

Taehyung.

Both Jungkook and Taehyung turn around at the sudden voice behind them. Jungkook looks at the man in front of them, a white male, fucking handsome but not as broad as Taehyung, a bit taller, dressed in a casual attire.

Then Jungkook hears Taehyung draw in a sharp breath and the grip on his hand tightens. That's when it kicks in.

Jungkook looks at Taehyung and finds him staring at the man, eyes huge, jaw clenches and the color draining so fast from his skin Jungkook shivers.

Salut.

Taehyung doesn't reply, Jungkook looks back at the man and he sure as hell hopes his eyes are conveying the rage that is coursing through him.

That's him.

It's actually him.

He has blond hair, the motherfucker, Jungkook wants to punch him.

C'est plutôt simple de te trouver, tu sais?” the man smiles, it's not menacing, it's nothing but kind. “T'as juste à suivre l'art, et te voilà.

He's nothing but kind. And his words don't sound threatening. And yet Taehyung's hand is shaking and gripping Jungkook's so tight it hurts.

The man looks around a bit, takes a step forward, stops when his eyes settle on Jungkook, then he looks back at Taehyung. “J'ai reconnu la moitié de ces peintures, tu les as toutes réalisées avec moi. C'est plaisant de voir que tu les as toujours. Est-ce que tu les as gardées par nostalgie?

Taehyung doesn't say anything this time either, he's holding his breath. Jungkook knows him well enough to recognize it when Taehyung's scared. So he decides that if that man takes another step forward he will either deck him or run out of this place with Taehyung as fast as he can.

Suddenly, the man's smile disappears and something akin to annoyance sets on his features. “Tu sais très bien que je n'aime pas quand tu restes silencieux comme ça. Est ce que tu veux bien me répondre s'il te plait?

“I want to go home.” Taehyung murmurs, Jungkook looks at him and he sees it, the moment Taehyung starts making himself smaller, almost hiding behind him. “Jungkook, I want to go away.”

“Je suis venu ici parce que je voulais te voir.” he says, one more step, Jungkook takes one back and Taehyung does the same. “Je suis venu pour toi. Tu n'es pas content de me voir?”

There's a long silence after whatever this man asked him, Taehyung is now clinging to his arm.

“We're leaving.” Jungkook says, the man's eyes focus on him. “I told you to stay away.”

“And I didn't listen.” the man replies and Jungkook is surprised to hear him speak in Korean, an accent to his words but completely understandable. “Who even are you to tell me what to do with him?”

Jungkook's has had enough of this. “Listen to me, you fucking-”

Non.” Taehyung speaks up. He's looking straight at the man, his fingers digging into Jungkook's skin as he speaks.

A pause, then the man takes a deep breath. “Tu n'es pas content de me voir?

Non.” Taehyung repeats, this time firmer. “Dégage. S'il te plait.

Taehyung-

“No!” Taehyung yells. “Go away!”

The silence that follows is sharp and Jungkook is sure he can hear his own heart beating against his ribcage. He feels completely useless in this situation and that's not helping either; he could just drag Taehyung away but Tae doesn't seem to be even able to move right now. So he waits.

When the man sighs and takes yet another step forward, a hand lifting up as if he's wanting to touch, Jungkook pulls Taehyung behind him.

“No.” Jungkook shakes his head, he feels Taehyung's hand gripping his shirt. “No.”

The man stops moving, looks at Jungkook with an expression that doesn't give much away before he nods. “Fine.” he says. “Fine. Not today.”

“Not ever.”

“That's not up to you.” he tries to catch Taehyung's eyes, but the other is clearly hiding behind him. “Taehyung, you know we need to talk. So we'll do that. Just not today.”

Jungkook keeps his eyes on the man's back as he finally walks away, his steps echoing in the empty room until a door opens and then closes.

Jungkook spins around and grabs Taehyung's shoulders. “Hey, are you okay?”

“I wanna go home.” Taehyung says, still looking smaller than he should, eyes on the floor and shoulders hunched. “Can we go home?”

“Yeah, of course. I'll get us a taxi, don't- he's not here anymore, we can go home.”

“Yeah.” Taehyung takes a deep breath, closing his eyes. “Take me home.”







Taehyung doesn't speak on the way back, inside the taxi it's eerily silent if not for the upbeat song coming from the radio at a very low volume, the driver clearly has caught that something isn't right and isn't trying to make small talk nor to mask the awkward silence with music. Taehyung looks out of the window the entire ride, his hand holds tightly Jungkook's.

When they're finally home, inside Taehyung's apartment, Jungkook doesn't know if he can fuss over him because, sue him, he's worried, or if maybe he should try to give him some space. But when he tries to let go of Taehyung's hand, the other just grips it harder, sending him a look that screams of pleads.

“I'm not going anywhere.” Jungkook tries, his thumb pressing in the palm of Taehyung's hand as they stand by the door. “You should sit? Or maybe lie down.”

Taehyung nods and lets Jungkook drag him to the bedroom. He sits on the mattress once they're there, eyes staring at the floor. Jungkook goes to the wardrobe, opens it and grabs one of Taehyung's robes.

Wordlessly, Jungkook starts unbuttoning Taehyung's shirt, the other making no sign of noticing. Jungkook takes the shirt off him, drops it on the floor, then starts undoing Taehyung's pants as well, undressing him completely before he gets the robe and quickly puts it on him, tucking it in place as he closes the silk tie in a messy knot.

“Hey.”

Taehyung's eyes focus on him.

“Lofi?” he asks, Taehyung breathe in deeply through his nose and nods.

Jungkook smiles at him before he walks to the speakers, connects his phone to them and picks the first Lofi playlist he finds on YouTube, he lowers the volume until it's just a pleasant buzz of music then gets on the mattress.

“Come here. You need to relax a bit.”

Taehyung takes a handful of seconds to either make up his mind or really process Jungkook's words, but when he does he spins around and quickly crawls over, drapes himself over Jungkook and hides his face in the crook of the other's neck, lips pressed on the juncture of Jungkook's shoulders, exhaling slowly.

“You're alright, yeah?” Jungkook murmurs, he quickly puts a pillow behind his head and wraps an arm around Taehyung's back. “You're just fine. You always say this to me and it works. Is it working?”

There's a very small nod coming from Taehyung and, hell, Jungkook will get whatever he gets.

“You think you can fall asleep? It's actually pretty late.”

Taehyung shifts his head so that his cheek is resting on Jungkook's chest, he has his eyes closed. Jungkook sees him lifting his hand so he holds it in his own again, squeezing it firmly. Taehyung opens his eyes, looks at their hands where they rest in front of his face, lets go of it for a moment only to trace the line of Jungkook's knuckles with the tips of his fingers.

“I really like your hands, you know?” he says.

“Yeah?”

“They're pretty.” Taehyung stars grazing the veins on the back of Jungkook's hands. “I like the way you touch me a lot. I don't think you notice it, but you always touch me really carefully.”

Jungkook knows this. He's really fucking aware of how careful he is when he's touching Taehyung.

“You didn't use to touch me like this at first. When we had just met.”

“Mmh. Didn't love you back then.”

“It's not that. You started touching me like this when you started understanding me a bit more.” a pause. “I wish you could touch yourself the way you touch me. Carefully.”

Jungkook frowns, Taehyung flips Juungkook's hand around and traces the lines of his palm, it feels a bit ticklish.

“His name is Stephane.”

Jungkook, despite himself, scoffs. “That sounds like the douchiest fucking name.”

“It does, doesn't it?” Taehyung smiles a bit, just for a moment. “Romaine, Stephane, Antoine. The douchiest sounding names ever. And they usually are assholes.” Taehyung swallows. “I can't believe I couldn't even react.”

Jungkook presses his lips against Taehyung's hair. “Tae.”

“I should've reacted.”

“I mean, you yelled at him to fuck off.”

“Yeah, I did that hiding behind you.”

“You weren't hiding.”

“I was scared.” Taehyung closes his eyes again. “I was so fucking scared.”

There's silence for a while, Taehyung's breathing slow and easy, his fingers still moving over Jungkook's hand, touching it as if he had never held it before.

“Isn't it infuriating?” Taehyung suddenly asks. “That I'm still scared of him?”

Jungkook shifts a bit. “You never really told me all he's done to you. I can't give you an answer.”

“Yeah, I never really told you. 'Cause I don't know how.” Taehyung blinks, clenches his jaw. “He wasn't scary at first, you know? He was lovely. I met him at the Louvre, I was sketching. He sat beside me and started drawing as well, then he tore the page off and gave it to me before he left. He drew me. It was cliché and cheesy but I liked it. I met him again the day after and I asked him out.” Taehyung shrugs before he curls closer. “I loved him a lot. Thought he loved me, too. I guess he did for a while.”

Jungkook can tell that this isn't easy for Taehyung. Every word seems forced, he speaks slowly as if he's looking for the right words.

“We don't have to talk about it now.” he says.

“I was his muse.”

Jungkook's breath hitches in his throat for a moment, his arm tightens around Taehyung. He feels like he knows what it's coming.

“I just- it felt good. Hearing something like this from someone like him. He's a wonderful artist. So it felt good enough for me to endure everything.”

“Everything?”

“I'm not talking about that now.” Taehyung licks his lips nervously, shifts uncomfortably until he's not laying on top of Jungkook anymore but by his side, still holding his hand.

Jungkook turns on his side, his nose brushing against Taehyung's, he looks tired and sleepy and drained but he starts talking again.

“I was his muse and I believed him. I'm sure I was for a while. His actual muse, I mean. His only muse. Then I just found out that- well, he wasn't good at hiding it. Sometimes I think he didn't even try hiding it, that maybe he liked the idea of me finding out.”

“Finding out what?”

“He cheated on me. With lots of people.” Taehyung looks at him. “Have you ever been cheated on?”

Jungkook shakes his head.

“It feels like your heart turns to stone. Your entire world changes. Feels like your relationship or whatever you think you built with someone has never been real. Like you just imagined it all. Then there's rage, then sadness again, heartbreak, rage once more. It's shit.” Taehyung nibbles on his bottom lip for a few moments. “But when I found out I got cheated on I could only think about Jaesung. 'Cause I did the same thing to him, the only difference was that Jaesung didn't know. I wished so fucking bad I could just- forget about it. Just erase my memory or something.”

“What did you do?”

“Nothing.” Taehyung replies after a brief silence. “I did nothing at first.”

Jungkook frowns. “Why?”

“Because,” Taehyung's lips curl up in the smallest smile. “I was scared of him. So I didn't say anything.”

There's something about the way Taehyung keeps saying that he's scared of him that doesn't sit right with Jungkook.

“You don't have to be ashamed of it.”

“Of what?”

“Of being scared of him.”

Taehyung presses his lips together, his hand twitches.

“Hey.” Jungkook presses his forehead against Taehyung's, feels him sigh. “There's nothing bad with being afraid of the dark.”

Taehyung chuckles, the sound a bit dry maybe, but it's there. “Don't steal my lines.”

“If you're scared of him there must be a reason. He must've done something, so there's nothing to be ashamed.”

“He did a lot of things.”

“But you don't want to talk about it.” Jungkook says, Taehyung nods. “Not now?”

“Not now. I'm tired now.”

“Then another day. If you want to.”

“'k.” Taehyung pushes himself closer and easily presses his body against Jungkook's, an arm slung over his hip. “Can we keep the music on?”

“Yeah, sure.”

Taehyung mutters a thank you before he closes his eyes and, shortly after, he falls asleep, a steady rise and fall of his chest, lips pursed and his hair falling over his eyes. Jungkook pushes them away and tucks a strand of hair behind his ear before he looks up at the ceiling.

This isn't how he thought the night was going to end and maybe that's what makes him even angrier. This was supposed to be their night, their big accomplishment, their art. It was supposed to be a good night. Taehyung was supposed to be happy for more than a handful of minutes.

This isn't fair. Taehyung says it a lot of times, especially when he's mad, that it isn't fair. Jungkook never really understood what that it is, but now he feels like he does.

Happiness isn't fair. That fucking bitch.





The next morning, he wakes up to an empty bed and to the smell of breakfast coming from the kitchen. And by now he should know, Taehyung ever really cooks so early in the morning when he's upset.

But Taehyung smiles at him when he walks in the room, he nods at the pan on the stove. “In memory of the good old times.”

It's a french toast.

“Feeling nostalgic?”

Taehyung shrugs. “Just feeling something, I guess.”

So, in the end, some things don't really change: Jungkook still thinks that french toasts are too greasy, he'd love to have rice for breakfast at least once and Taehyung is still a master at hiding what he really wants to say behind pretty words.



 






The days silently go by. Taehyung goes back to his usual self. It's weird, Jungkook thinks, that his usual self is someone who tries very hard to force happiness in himself.

Lee Bo-ra calls Taehyung one evening; the exhibition is still going nicely, more paintings have been sold, two of Jungkook's photos as well. The money will be transferred soon, once the exhibition will be over and the gallery will be able to give the paintings and photos to their buyers.

“How does it feel? Making art for money?” Taehyung asks him once the phone call ends.

“I'll be honest.” Jungkook says as he cleans his camera with a small brush. “Real fucking good. I love capitalism.”

Taehyung snorts and dissolves in laughter, Jungkook can't help but kiss his smile.





They're watching TV, a re-run of Goblin that is leaving both Taehyung and Jungkook in tears, when Taehyung's phone starts buzzing.

Taehyung sniffles, grabs the phone and frowns at the screen, then he picks up.

“Yeah?” silence, then Taehyung's jaw clenches. He ends the phone call without saying anything else, Jungkook frowns.

“Everything okay?”

Taehyung doesn't answer him, he taps on the screen so that he can go to the calls he's received, he taps on the last number and blocks it. Then he throws the phone on the carpet, staring at it with venom in his eyes.

“He got a new number.” is all Taehyung says before he focuses back on the TV.

“He- he changed number?”

“It's okay, Kook.”

“Taehyung, this isn't okay. Hey, look at me.”

Taehyung does so, very reluctantly.

“This is sick.” Jungkook says, looking Taehyung straight in the eyes. “He's sick.”

“Maybe I should just change my number.” Taehyung mutters and Jungkook swears he sees red for a moment.

“You don't have to do shit!” he hisses, a hand on Taehyung's knee. “He needs to back off! This is not normal behavior, Tae!”

“Ain't the worst thing he did.” Taehyung blurts out, swallowing hard.

God, Jungkook's hands are shaking. “Taehyung. He's not going to stop.”

Taehyung nods slowly then pushes his hair back, turns to Jungkook with a smile. “Don't worry, okay? It's gonna be fine. I'll figure something out, I always do.”

Before Jungkook can say something, Taehyung shushes him with a kiss, his hand cupping his cheek, Jungkook just sighs and lets Taehyung fall on top of him.





Changes are slow.

Taehyung acts like always, Jungkook does the same. They keep creating their art, go to random coffee shops and eat overpriced cakes, Taehyung keeps posing in ridiculous ways for him when he notices Jungkook has his camera out, he keeps loving watercolors more than acrylics.



“In France, there was this place that had huge ass macarons.” Taehyung whispers one night, right before they fall asleep. “They were so fucking tasty, Kook-ah. I miss them.”



Taehyung keeps cooking early in the morning if something is bothering him, he keeps smoking on the balcony wearing those robes that are too thin and don't keep him warm until Jungkook drops a blanket on his shoulders.



“I used to sketch a lot at the Louvre, y'know?” Taehyung says one afternoon, a delicate brush in his hand, his fingers stained blue. “The couches there are so comfortable, some of the rooms are so quiet.” a pause, Taehyung dips the brush in a glass of water, dabs it on a piece of cloth. “I loved sketching there, it was so peaceful.”



Taehyung keeps laughing too loudly, his mouth twists in that weird way of his when he does, his eyes almost shutting close, looking so damn beautiful that it physically hurts.



“The Eiffel Tower isn't the prettiest thing in the world when you look it from the bottom, but once you're up there... Jesus, it's so incredible. The view, the height.” Taehyung giggles around a mouthful of Kimchi. “I miss the view from up there.”



Taehyung keeps wanting to be fucked hard and fast, wants it to hurt a bit, keeps kissing him like he could wake up the next morning and not find him there anymore.



“There's this bakery in Paris, their stuff was so good. My mouth fucking waters if I think about it, they made this amazing bread. Wish they made bread that good here.” he says one morning as he plays with the strings of Jungkook's hoodie.



Taehyung keeps fucking Jungkook slow, carefully, praising him for every sound he makes, whispering filth in his ear and marking his neck as he tells him what a good boy he's being.



“You know what I miss a lot? Walking. I don't walk as much here in Seoul.” Taehyung tells him whilst they're waiting for their order of meat to grill at their favorite BBQ restaurant. “I loved walking in Paris, especially early in the morning. Although pigeons were fucking annoying.”



Taehyung keeps being himself and he speaks about France and Paris. He didn't use to, not unless Jungkook asked him to. But as the days go by, December growing closer, the cold settling in, Taehyung can't seem to stop talking about it. It would just pop up in the middle of a conversation, or when he sees something that reminds him of Paris.

For some reason, Jungkook hates it.

No, he's scared of it. He doesn't know why, though.





Taehyung has his hair kept up in two space buns, which is all kinds of fucking adorable and endearing, as he stares at the recipe book with a whisk in his hand. He's wearing a Love Live! apron. Jungkook didn't even question it.

“Tae, are you sure you wanna do this?” he asks from the counter.

“Yes. I will make cookies.”

“Have you ever made cookies?”

“No. Wanna try.” Taehyung squints his eyes, reads the instructions again. “But I want a lot of cookies... should I change the measurements?”

“What?”

“What if I use, like two kilograms of flour?”

“Taehyung, no.”

“But that way there will be more-”

“Tae.” Jungkook arches an eyebrow. “I am taking the whisk away if you don't stick to the instructions the book is giving you.”

Taehyung rolls his eyes. “Martha Stewart can kiss my ass. Fine, whatever.”

Oh thank God, Jungkook thinks.

“Can I borrow your laptop for a second?” he asks. “Forgot mine at my place.”

“Yeah, sure, it's on the bed.” Taehyung replies before he opens the fridge and starts taking the ingredients out.

Jungkook goes to the bedroom and finds Taehyung's laptop on the mattress, he sits on the bed and takes it, opening it.

There's a tab open already, Jungkook ignores it, opens a new one so that he can check his e-mails until his mind registers what it says on that tab. He can read Paris and tickets. Jungkook slowly clicks on that tab and, for some reason, his breath gets stuck in his throat when he looks at the list of airplane tickets, their prices, their dates. All for Paris.

Jungkook clenches his jaw and grabs the laptop again, he stands up and walks back to the kitchen. Taehyung is breaking an egg in a bowl and doesn't pay attention to him when Jungkook puts the laptop on the kitchen island.

“Tae.”

“Mmh, don't distract me, I don't want shell pieces in the dough.”

“Tae, what's this?”

Taehyung spins around and his eyes land on the open laptop. He stiffens a bit but he gives him a shrug. “My computer?”

“Taehyung.”

“Tickets for Paris, happy now?” Taehyung looks at him. “I still didn't buy any so calm down.”

“I'm not mad.” Jungkook says, he crosses his arms and lays against the counter. “You wanna take a trip to Paris? Fine by me. Just don't know why you didn't tell me.”

Taehyung doesn't reply, he swallows hard and puts the whisk away next to the bowl he had prepared earlier. That's when it kicks in.

Jungkook can't believe he's scared to ask, but he still is. “Tae, why didn't you tell me you were planning a trip?”

Taehyung looks down, shakes his head. “I still have nothing planned, I was just looking.”

“That doesn't answer my question.”

“'Cause I'm not planning a trip there.” Taehyung replies quietly.

“Then what-”

“Jungkookie.” Taehyung walks to him, his hands go to his neck, thumbs grazing his skin in soothing circles. “Baby, I haven't decided yet that's why I didn't tell you, yeah? I was just- just thinking.”

“You want to go back there.” Jungkook says, the realization hitting him like a slap. “You're not planning a trip 'cause you want to move back in France.”

Taehyung's fingers dig a bit deeper. “I haven't decided.”

“You're fucking considering it, though.” Jungkook pushes those hands off him and walks out of the kitchen, he hears Taehyung following him.

“You could come with me!”

“Oh, could I?!” Jungkook turns around to face him, stopping in the middle of the living room. “Please, Tae, bring me to a place I don't fucking know with a language I can't fucking speak, that's gonna work out so well!”

Taehyung rolls his eyes and that only fuels Jungkook's rage. “I learned it there, you can do it as well.”

“Thought nothing was planned. Fuck, I should've known, you've been speaking about France all the fucking time, I should've known.”

“You're being fucking dramatic.”

“Dramatic?! You want to leave!”

“I don't want to leave!” Taehyung yells, Jungkook cannot believe they're having this fight whilst Taehyung is wearing a goddamn Love Live! apron.

“Then why do you want to go back?!”

“I miss it! Can't I miss a place?! I didn't even want to leave in the first place!”

“Then you should've stayed there!”

Taehyung's mouth shuts close, he takes a step back and tilts his chin up. “'s that so?”

“No.” Jungkook heaves a sigh and rubs a hand over his face, feeling already too tired. “Didn't mean it.”

“You say a lot of shit you don't mean when we fight, I'm starting to think you actually do.”

“This is exactly why I fucking hate fighting with you.”

They both get too mean when they fight.

“I don't see where the problem is.” Taehyung blurts out. “What if I wanna go back? What's the issue?”

“I am!” Jungkook exclaims. “I am the issue! I don't want to leave Seoul, my whole life is here!”

“We can start a new one there!”

“Are you fucking kidding me, Tae? Are you actually serious?!”

“I don't know if I can be in Seoul anymore.”

Jungkook blinks. “Is this because of him?”

Taehyung frowns. “Him?”

“Stephane or whatever stupid ass name he has.”

“What does he have to do with this?”

Jungkook can feel in his body the moment he's had enough of this. He's not fucking blind, he can see that Taehyung, at the sole mention of his name, is already making himself smaller, shoulders tight and arms pressed against each of his hips.

And God, that has his skin prickling with heat.

“You ran away from Paris because of him and you're just going to the same now that he's here.”

Taehyung's eyes narrow. “You don't know what the fuck you're talking about.”

“That's right, 'cause you don't wanna tell me.” Jungkook shakes his head. “You know what, let's just- I'm gonna go home now and then we'll talk, I don't want to fight for real. It gets messy when we fight.”

“That's what fights usually do, Jungkook.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes. “Not my fault you decided to fuck us over, but sure.”

“Fuck us over.” Taehyung scoffs and looks away, his tongue pressing against his left cheek. “You can be so selfish sometimes.”

At this, Jungkook literally stops breathing for a handful of seconds. Taehyung seems to have realized what he said as well, judging by the ashamed look on his face, his face flushing.

“Selfish.”

“No, Kook, no.”

“I-” Jungkook takes a step back when he sees Taehyung moving. “I gave you everything. Every fucking thing. I gave you friendship and- and care and protection, I stood up for you, I gave you my trust, I-”

“Kookie, please-”

“I love you!” Jungkook raises his voice to cut Taehyung off. “How is that selfish?! I'm selfish?! You want to fuck it all up so that you can run away from him again!”

“You know what, you're right, just go home.” Taehyung sniffs hard, Jungkook can see his eyes welling up. “I don't wanna fight for real either, just go.”

Fuck this.

“It's a little too late for that, Tae.” Jungkook turns around and walks straight to the door, he walks out of Taehyung's apartment and slams the door shut behind him so hard he swears he can feel the doorknob rattle in his hand.

And of course, because Jungkook can be kind of pathetic or maybe just a lot optimistic, he waits by that door. Hopes for a few minutes that maybe Taehyung will go after him. Or maybe Jungkook hopes he can find the courage to ring the doorbell and just hug Taehyung, tell him he's sorry, that they'll talk it out, find a way.

'Cause thats' what they do. They always find a way.

But in the end, Jungkook goes back to his flat, drops on the couch and turns on the tv to try and drown the buzzing in his head.





It's not that he's mad.

No, wait, he is mad. He's kind of still fuming about the whole deal, but it's more than that.

Jungkook is scared. A lot scared. Taehyung is reckless enough to just buy a ticket to Paris, leave without saying a word and leaving him alone.

Alone.

It's been a while since he's been actually left alone. He didn't forget how scary loneliness is but he sure as hell didn't feel it digging in his chest that hard.

It's that fucking nightmare's fault.

God, it was so dark and Taehyung was just there. He was there and then he wasn't anymore and Jungkook feels like he could've tried to reach out for him in that dream, stop him from disappearing. But he didn't.

So that scares him and fear can be a lot stronger than rage.

It's been a week since he's last seen Taehyung. He didn't try to call him, Taehyung neither. Jungkook hasn't stepped on the balcony this whole time and he has a feeling that Taehyung didn't either.

He doesn't have nightmares but he can't sleep as well as before. He got used to sleeping with someone, sue him.

He's scared of the nightmares, that's why he can't sleep.





Jimin invites him over to his and Yoongi's place for dinner.

“Our place, Kook. Our place. I could fucking cry.”

Jungkook might be feeling like shit and running on four hours of sleep (he swears he almost had a nightmare, he knows it. He woke up right before it really started with no oxygen in his lungs), but he knows how much this means both to Yoongi and Jimin, so he tells them he'll be there. Taehyung won't be there, that's what Jimin tells him, he's working on a commission and he's on a very tight schedule.

Whatever.





“You look like utter shit.” that's how Yoongi greets him when he gets a good look at him, he steps aside to let him in. “You good, kid?”

Jungkook shoves the bottle of wine he brought on Yoongi's chest. “Peachy. Thank you for the kind words.”

Yoongi shrugs. “Just stating facts.”

“Kookie!” Jimin exclaims. “How are you doing?”

Yoongi closes the door. “Kid looks like a train ran over him multiple times and then a dog took a piss on his corpse, take a guess babe.”

“Take a fucking chill pill, darling.” Jimin bites back, then nods at Jungkook. “He's right though.”

Jungkook scoffs and goes straight to the couch, sitting there and grabbing a pillow. “I came out to have a good time and I honestly feel so attacked right now.”

“Ah, memes.” Yoongi shakes his head. “He only talks in memes when he's really upset.”

Jimin glares at him and then turns to Jungkook. “Come on, chin up. Jin-hyung is making dinner and his food is delicious.”

“Oh.” Jungkook frowns. “Jin-hyung is here?”

“I sure am!” comes from the kitchen. “I'll be there in a moment!”

“I'll go give him a hand.” Yoongi says before he drops a kiss on Jimin's cheek and leaves for the kitchen.

“He's domestic, Jungkook.” Jimin whispers as he sits next to him. “He's so domestic. Like, it's unreal, he makes me breakfast every morning. And when I cook he hugs me from behind and asks me about my day.”

“And that's a problem because?”

“It's not a problem, it's heaven!” Jimin sighs. “I want to marry him.”

“Nice.”

Jimin gives him a look. “Please, tell me you did not have a fight with Tae. 'Cause that would make me look like an asshole right now.”

“I had a fight with Tae.”

“Goddammit.”

“It's fine.” It's not, it's really not.

Jimin looks like he's about to say something but Jin arrives, carrying two plates full of food that smells incredibly, Yoongi is right behind him, walking very carefully with another large plate in his hands.

“Let's eat!” Jin says, smiling widely at Jungkook. “It's been a while, kid. I'm sorry I couldn't attend the exhibit, I wasn't in Seoul.”

“It's fine, hyung.” Jungkook says as he sits down at the table.

“Hope you'll show me the photos either way.”

“Those that haven't been bought, sure.”

“Oh, look at him! Selling already, mh? I'm proud of you.”

God, Jungkook likes Jin. Jin is one of those people who get fond quickly and from that moment on they really do show just how much they care.



The dinner proceeds smoothly, they chat about what's been happening these last few days as they shove large bites of Buldak. Stupidly enough, Jungkook thinks that Taehyung would probably eat the Dak Galbi instead, Buldak is too spicy for him.

Yoongi tells them of a possible contract with a new company he sets his eyes on.

“Looks like a decent company. Trainees are talented as hell, those kids work their asses off.”

Yoongi never really brags, unless it's in a song, but it doesn't take a genius to see how proud he is of himself. Jimin just smiles with this love-struck eyes and Jungkook focuses back on his chicken.



After the dinner, Jungkook goes outside for a smoke, his free hand shoved in the pocket of his coat because it's so cold outside, the smoke mixes with his breath in the chilly air.

The door opens and Jin steps outside.

“Can I bum a cigarette off you?”

“Sure, hyung.” Jungkook takes his pack of cigarettes and gets one out. “Didn't know you smoked.”

Seokjin shrugs, and zips up his black coat, he accepts the cigarette Jungkook hands him and lights it up with a zippo he takes from his left pocket. “I don't smoke much, just if I don't have work the following days. Director would kick my ass if my voice sounded weird.”

Jungkook chuckles, Jin stands beside him, his back against the wall. “Jimin and Yoongi look really happy.”

“Yeah.”

“I'm glad. I've seen those kids grow up and I've seen them fall in love.”

“You don't have anyone?”

“In this business?” Seokjin shakes his head with a small smile, he taps on his cigarette and the ash falls on the ground. “Can't have that luxury.”

Jungkook hums. “That's kind of messed up.”

“It is, isn't it? But I love my job, it means everything to me.” Jin takes a long drag, exhales the smoke through his nose. “Taehyung told me about the fight.”

Jungkook scoffs, his index finger scratches off the orange paper of the cigarette's filter. “Of course he did.”

“He won't go back to France, Kook.”

“Wouldn't be so sure about that.”

“He's just scared.”

“I'm scared, too.”

“I know you are. But Taehyung-” Jin heaves a sigh. “God, has he told you? Has he told you all of it?”

“No.” Jungkook tries to sound like he doesn't care when in reality his hands are shaking. “He doesn't want to talk about it.”

Jin nods. “Well, you will understand when he will. And if you don't, then you don't deserve him.”

Jungkook looks at the man with a raised eyebrow. “You're so protective of him, it's scary. I'm not the bad guy here.”

“Oh.” Jin smiles apologetically. “No, you aren't. You're kind, Jungkook-ah. But, yes, I am very protective of him. I'm protective of Jimin and Yoongi, too. But Tae... well, he always takes it up a notch, doesn't he? In everything he does.”

Damn right he does.

“He feels horrible, Jungkook.” Jin says. “He doesn't like it when you two fight.”

Jungkook shifts his weight on his other leg. “Yeah, well. I don't like it either. We get so mean when we do. We always say things we don't mean.”

“Are you sure you don't mean what you say?”

“I think- I don't know, I think that we try to say what we really think but it always comes out way meaner than we wanted.” Jungkook looks up at the sky, the starts can't be seen, for some reason he thinks about the lampposts that Taehyung warned him about so long ago. “For two people who should love each other, we're really good at saying stuff we know it's going to hurt us.”

There's silence for a while, it's so quiet outside that Jungkook can hear the sound of the cigarette's body burning out when Jin gets another drag.

“Yeah.” he says, looks at Jungkook with a small smile. “Love does that. You get some sort of- you know, power. Love comes with that power, 'cause you know that person. You know what stings and you ends up using it.”

It's weird. Jin is right, they tend to do that.

“How come rage is stronger than love? Or whatever.”

“It's not.” Jin replies. “'Cause you end up feeling like shit the moment the words leave your mouth. Rage is just a really petty bitch. Listen, Kook-ah.” Jin throws the burnt out cigarette away. “Just call him. Or go to his place. Talk it out. You two care about each other too much to be alone when you could be together.”

God, isn't that true.





It's true and yet Jungkook doesn't call Taehyung when he's back home, he doesn't call the next day, doesn't try to step outside on the balcony.

But Taehyung doesn't do any of those things either. It feels like some sort of stupid dick-size competition at this point. Who can resist longer without the other?

Jungkook only knows that he wishes he could sleep more than four fractured hours without the terror of closing his eyes and seeing that darkness again.

He wishes he wasn't so fucking weak. He wishes he didn't feel as hollow as he does whenever Tae isn't around or he isn't watching the world through the lens of a camera. He wishes for a lot of things but doesn't make any active move to get those things with his bare hands.

Weaknesses come in different shapes, his biggest one comes with golden skin and a warm, deep voice. Humans shouldn't be a weakness but here he is, completely heartbroken over something that can be easily fixed, all because he's scared.

If losing Taehyung in the dark was scary he doesn't even want to imagine how terrifying it would be to lose him in daylight.



 

 






He's already awake when his phone starts ringing. Jungkook groans and rolls over on the bed, grabs the phone from the bedside table and his breath hitches when he sees Taehyung's name on the screen. He picks up immediately and sits up on the bed.

“Tae, hey.”

Silence. No, not silence, there's a thumping nose in the background.

“Taehyung?”

“Jungkook-” he's crying.

“Hey, what's wrong?” more silence. “Taehyung, what happened?”

“I- God, why duh-doesn't he stop?”

“What?”

“He's outside my house, he kuh-keeps knocking, I don't know how-” Taehyung chokes on a sob and Jungkook gets off the bed, he makes a run to the living room.

“Is your balcony open? Tae, calm down, is it open?”

“Yeah. Fuck, please, I don't- don't know-”

“Okay, okay, it's okay.” that's what he says when he's out on the balcony but as he climbs over the railing he realizes that this is not okay.

This is 50 different shades of really not fucking okay.

Jungkook ends the call once he steps inside Taehyung's flat, shoves the phone in the pocket of his sweats the moment he spots Taehyung, hiding in a fucking corner of the living room, legs so close to his chest and hands gripping his hair.

Jungkook kneels in front of him, it feels a lot like that night on the balcony.

“Tae, it's okay, stop- you're gonna rip your hair off, come on.”

He gently pries Taehyung's hands off his hair and the other looks up at him, with swollen red eyes and dry lips.

“Fuck.” Jungkook starts dabbing the edge of the sleeves of his shirt on Taehyung's wet cheeks.

Taehyung opens his mouth but before he can speak there's another onslaught of harsh knocking on his door. Taehyung makes a choked sound and crawls further in the corner.

Ouvre cette putain de porte!”

“I'm going to fucking kill him.” Jungkook hisses, tries to stand up but Taehyung's fingers cling to his shirt.

“Don't- don't go, I don't know what to do.”

“We need to call the police.”

Taehyung looks up at him with huge eyes, like he can't even believe Jungkook would suggest something like this. The knocking begins again, Taehyung shuts his eyes closed and Jungkook just now realizes that he really has no idea of how deep the damage was until now.

He knew it was serious, that the scars of whatever he did to Taehyung were still there and would ache from time to time. But he was wrong, there are no scars, the wound is still open and bleeding.

Jungkook grabs Taehyung's wrists. “Look at me.” he gives Taehyung time, doesn't speak until they're looking at each other. “If you don't send him away now he'll come back. It doesn't matter where you'll run, he'll come back. He'll hurt you and you'll feel like this again and I know you hate feeling like this.”

There are more words being shouted from outside, Jungkook can't make out any of them, Taehyung takes a shaky breath.

“But I'm scared.”

“Do you want to live your whole life like this? Scared?” Taehyung shakes his head, Jungkook squeezes his wrist. “Tae, even if it's dark I'll leave the lights on, but this can't go on.”

The banging starts once more and Jungkook groans. “How about you go the fuck away before I call the fucking police, you psycho?!”

There's a moment of silence, then. “You shut the fuck up!” Stephane yells, Jungkook rolls his eyes. “You fucking bitch, you think you know how to deal with him?!”

Before Jungkook can say anything or just open the door and choke someone to death, Taehyung stands up. He stares at the door with so much venom in his eyes that Jungkook feels a shiver run down his spine. Taehyung takes one step, then another, then he's marching to the door.

“Tae, wait-” Jungkook gets on his feet as well but Taehyung has already opened the door.

Jungkook sees Stephane's smiling at him before Taehyung grabs the collar of his jacket and harshly pulls him inside the house, he shuts the door behind him and shoves the man to the living room.

“I have fucking neighbors!” Taehyung yells, his voice cracking and still shaking, eyes wide and tears clinging to his eyelashes. “Stop making a goddamn scene!”

Okay, so, this is not what Jungkook was expecting. He quietly walks closer, keeping a small distance.

Stephane has his eyes narrowed, lips pressed in a thin line. “Je-”

“No.” Taehyung shakes his head. “No fucking French.”

Pourquoi est ce que tu fais ça à chaque fois?”

“I just said-”

Toujours entrain de me pousser à bout, je t’ai toujours si bien traité et pourtant-”

“Well?!” Taehyung shrieks, barks a laugh that has Jungkook actually fearing for everyone's laugh. “Not once did you treat me well! Not fucking once! And I never did anything to make you mad!”

Stephane shakes his head. “I did treat you well.”

“Yeah, for one fucking month! Then you would barely let me leave the house- my house -alone!”

Jungkook looks at Taehyung, his hair wild and his eyes so red and wide, he's shaking like a leaf and yet he looks fucking terrifying.

“You scared me! I was scared of you!”

“No, you were sick.” Stephane says, spits the last word like an insult. “I took care of you 'cause you were weak.”

“No, you made me weak!”

“So it's my fault if you're like this?”

Taehyung blinks, he points a finger at him. “Don't ever have the fucking arrogance to think that you had anything to do with my depression. You ain't shit, you didn't make me sick, you just made me pathetic.” Taehyung takes a steadying breath. “And you know what really pisses me off? That I'm still scared of you. That- that I'm shaking and I'm crying just because you- you're here. I can barely breathe just because you're standing in front of me! You're nothing and I still fuh-feel so fucking powerless against you, I hate you!”

“You loved me.”

“Of fucking course I did! Why do you think I'm so scared, uh?! 'Cause I managed to love you even when I hated you so much!” Taehyung takes a step forward. “You followed me here, you came to the exhibit, you- you found my house and I don't even want to know how, you come here and tell Jungkook he doesn't know? He doesn't know?!”

Taehyung, under Jungkook's incredulous eyes, actually shoves Stephane hard enough to make him almost lose balance.

“What do you know?!” Taehyung screams, shoves him again, it's weaker this time. “You don't know shit about me! You know nothing about how to love someone and you have the fucking audacity to come here and tell him that he doesn't know how to deal with me?! As if you did?!” One more push, this one is even stronger than the first one.

Jungkook always knew that Taehyung would have been terrifying the moment he blew up.

Jungkook immediately moves to Taehyung and wraps his arms around Taehyung's waist, dragging him away, Taehyung struggles in his arms and tries to pry them off him.

“Hey! Tae, stop!”

“You fucking piece of shit!” Taehyung is flushing red now, sweating and digging his fingers in Jungkook's forearm. “How is it puh-possible that someone as mediocre as you still has me so fucking scared?! I wish you were dead!”

Stephane, from where he's standing, looks really small now. Taehyung is right, he looks mediocre. He looks like any person. Just one human.

“You don't-” he tries, shaking his head. “You don't mean that.”

“I sure fucking do!” Taehyung snarls, thrashes again in Jungkook's arm who only holds him tighter. “Now go away!”

“Taehyung, your studio is still there. All your stuff, all-”

“Then fucking burn it! Burn the fucking studio, burn the paintings I left there and I hope you burn with them! I swear to God, I ever see your face again I will ruin you! I will call the police, drag your fucking ass to hell! You hear me?!”

There's silence again and, finally, Taehyung stops struggling, leans against Jungkook panting and shaking.

“That's the look.” Taehyung says, staring at Stephane. “That's the look I had whenever you were around me.”

Just this has Jungkook hating that man even more, because if it's true that Taehyung looked so helpless and small when he was in France then he can't even begin to imagine what that person has done to him.

Stephane swallows, makes a show of pushing his hair back and clicking his tongue. “If I leave now you really won't ever see me again.”

“Jesus fucking Christ, just go.” Jungkook seethes.

Stephane clenches his jaw, gives one last look at Taehyung then walks to the door. He stops just one moment, his hand hovering just above the doorknob. Then the door is opened, he steps outside and closes it.

The silence that falls over the room is so thick that Jungkook can feel it on his skin, broken only by Taehyung's harsh breathing.

“He's gone?” he asks.

“Yeah.” Jungkook takes a deep breath. “He's gone.”

Taehyung's knees give up and Jungkook follows him on the ground, he parts his legs and pulls Taehyung against him, still holding him by the waist.

“You're okay, you did so well. You hear me? You did good, he's gone.” he says all of this against the nape of Taehyung's nape who just starts crying a bit harder, hugs his knees close to his chest and sobs like the world is ending.

Be it because of what he's just witnessed or the entire situation and just the feeling of utter helplessness, Jungkook feels panic catching up quite fast. So he does the only thing that comes to his mind: he grabs his phone, taps on the YouTube app and goes to his history, finds the first Lofi playlist he sees, plays it and puts the volume at max.

It's quite insane how instant the effect is. Taehyung draws in a sharp breath and then his body relaxes, almost flush against Jungkook's chest. He's still sobbing but Jungkook can hear him try to breathe through his nose and exhale through his mouth, he feels Taehyung's hand gripping his forearm and squeezing it. Like he's the one who's calming the other down.

Jungkook doesn't say anything, waits for Taehyung to stop shaking that much, keeping his head on Taehyung's shoulders and his arms around the other's waist. He doesn't know how much time it takes, but Taehyung finally sighs and straightens up a bit.

“I've got snot everywhere.” he says, he sounds like his throat hurts.

Jungkook just rubs his sleeve under Taehyung's nose.

“That's disgusting, Kook.”

“I don't care.” he noses on Taehyung's temple. “You okay?”

“No. I'm shitting my pants. Like- I'm scared he'll just start knocking again or shit.”

“Yeah, well, got the police on speed dial.”

A pause. “Wait, do you actually?”

“Fuck no, I've got the Chinese Restaurant we always go to on speed dial.”

Taehyung snorts. “Oh no, more snot, shit.”

“It's okay, my sleeve's all yours.”

Taehyung laughs, but it's a high pitched squeaky sound that Jungkook never heard from him. “Oh God, why do- do I find that so romantic?”

Jungkook snorts. “I feel like you might be in some sort of shock now. Or like an adrenaline drop off.”

“I literally swooned.” Taehyung giggles. “I just- all your sleeves are mine? You'd sacrifice them for my snot?”

Jungkook kisses his cheek. “I would.”

“That's so lovely, oh God.” Taehyung sniffles. “Fuck, why can't I calm down?”

“Hey, you did good. You stood up for yourself. You almost punched the asshole, you were frankly terrifying.”

“Was I?”

“I mean, I don't want to fight with you ever again, so-”

“I was so scared.” Taehyung murmurs. “Jesus, Kook, I was so scared.”

“Yeah, I know.”

Taehyung rubs the palm of his hands on his cheeks, he hiccups. “Can we stay like this for a while?”

“Yeah, of course.”

“Then I need a bath.”

“Okay.”



It takes Taehyung three more playlists and five cigarettes before he decides that his butt hurts and that he wants to stand up. Jungkook helps him up and walks with him to the bath, starts the water to fill the tub. Taehyung sits on the edge of the porcelain tub, staring at the water with blank eyes, Jungkook makes a run to the kitchen and fills a glass of water for Taehyung to drink. He manages to have Tae take a few sips, then he adds Taehyung's favorite soap in the bath, lets the foam grow and then shuts the water off.

Taehyung stips and quickly gets in the warm water, sighing deeply once he's sitting there, the water reaching his chin.

“Want me to wash your hair?”

Taehyung nods, dips his head under the water to get it wet and then lays in the tub with his eyes closed.

It's not the first time Jungkook washes his hair. Taehyung can be spoiled, Jungkook learned this a long time ago. Most of the time, though, Taehyung just needs the attention or the physical contact.

As Jungkook massages his scalp, his hair soft and foamy with shampoo, Taehyung also seems to be relaxing more. “Your hair got longer.”

“Yeah?”

“It wasn't this long when I met you.”

“You remember what we talked about when we met?”

Jungkook smiles. “About Hollywood being a white bitch.”

Taehyung chuckles. “Yeah. That was a good conversation.”

“About lampposts and stars.”

“Do you still think about that?”

“I thought about it a few days ago. There were no stars in the sky so I thought about it.”

“Mmh. It's been a while since I thought about it.” Taehyung tilts his head to the side a bit. “I knew it wasn't healthy since the beginning, you know?”

Jungkook stops moving his fingers for a moment, but then he starts washing his hair again. “Yeah?”

“'Cause when I thought about him he was a lamppost, not a star.” Taehyung pauses. “Is that weird? That I was with him even though I knew? I swear he wasn't like this at first. It got worse when we started living together.”

“You know that you don't have to talk about it, right?”

“I want to. No, that's bullshit, I don't want to. But I need to.”

“Let me wash the shampoo off, then we talk.” Jungkook grabs the shower head and starts the water, waits for it to be nicely warm, then he quickly washes the soap off Taehyung's hair. Once he's done he shuts the water off, puts the shower head away and sits on the floor, his arms over the edge of the tub. “I'm listening.”

Taehyung looks at him for a few seconds, droplets of water clinging to his lashes. “At first it was little things.”

“Little things.”

“They'd sting, but I wouldn't think too much about them. I told you, he would always compare our works. He's better than me when it comes to art.”

“I highly doubt it.”

“You've never seen his stuff.”

“I don't need to.”

Taehyung's lips curl up in the smallest smile for a second. “Well, at first it was just that. I used to tell myself that he was only teasing me, that he was joking. I didn't take it seriously but in my head I knew that he meant it. All of it. But I still let him say what he wanted.” Taehyung lifts his hand up and Jungkook holds it between his own hands. “Then it was the phone calls. He'd get so mad when I didn't reply him straight away. Most of the time I didn't answer the phone 'cause it was on silent and I was working, but he just- he just didn't like it.”

Jungkook nods, presses his lips to the knuckles of Taehyung's hands.

“One day we had this huge fight about it 'cause my phone was dead and I was out. When I got home- my house, mind you, the piece of shit didn't even pay rent- he was... fuck, he was furious.” Taehyung grimaces at the memory. “I've never heard someone scream at me like that. So I got mad, yelled back, told him he can't get mad at me for not picking up my phone and he-” Taehyung swallows hard. “He grabbed my arm. Like, it wasn't painful or anything, he just- grabbed it. And stared. That was the first time I got scared of him 'cause... it really looked like he wanted to hurt me, y'know? But in the end, he let go of me and just went to sleep. Next morning he made me pancakes. With fresh strawberries.”

Taehyung gets quiet again so Jungkook waits. He watches the droplets of water sliding down his temple and cheek, listens to Taehyung's steady breathing until he talks again.

“I don't know if I want to get into details.”

“You don't have to.”

“It just got bad. Not quickly. It was slow. First, it was the phone calls, then it was me leaving the house alone. He didn't like that. I forced myself not to think about it too much and kept going. When Jin came to visit it was- shit, it wasn't good. He was nervous all the time, always on edge, he waited until Jin-hyung went back to Korea and then just fucking went off. The shit he told me, I-”

“It's okay.” Jungkook murmurs, he presses his thumb in the center of Taehyung's palm.

“That's when he started saying that I wasn't good enough and that he was too good to me. I didn't understand it, like- I was trying my fucking hardest to be good but it was never good enough. I was scared of him and that made me stay and try so fucking hard to be perfect.” Taehyung says. “And my mental health has always been a fucking mess but the whole situation just fucked me up even more, I couldn't sleep at night, I could barely paint, it was so- so unfair.” Taehyung rubs his neck. “Then I found out he cheated on me. He left his phone home when he was out and it kept ringing so I picked up and it was a guy. This guy was mad as well, he didn't know he was fucking around with someone who was taken. So I went through his texts and found just random people he was seeing. After a few days I confronted him about it, I was pissed. You know what he said?”

“Not sure I wanna know.”

Why were you using my phone?, that's what he said. Like it was my fault. I told him to fuck off and he slapped me.”

“Wait-”

“It wasn't even a good slap, but it still shocked me so much that I fell on my ass.”

“He slapped you?”

“Then he told me I deserved it.” Taehyung nods to himself. “And of course, I believed him. There's this thing, you know, that comes from being so helpless to someone: you'll believe anything they say. If he says you're dumb then it means you are, if he says you're not good enough then you aren't. If he slaps you and says that you deserve it then it must mean you truly did. Even if you know you didn't.” Taehyung smiles at Jungkook. “Don't make that face, love.”

“Tae, how-”

“You get addicted.” Taehyung shifts a bit in the tub. “You get used to it and so you also- you know, get addicted to it. In a twisted way, that's your life now. I was used to being scared and lonely so that's how I lived.”

Jungkook doesn't get it. He won't tell Taehyung this, he wouldn't dare, but he doesn't get it.

“What changed?” he asks instead. “'Cause you ran away in the end, so-”

“Ah.” Taehyung presses his lips together. “I was working on this- this painting. I was really proud of it, you know? I liked it a lot. But then he started saying it wasn't good at all and that I was just trying to imitate his style. He kept going at it for days and days, every time I'd pick up a brush he was there, telling me to just drop that painting. And one day he- fuck.” Taehyung lets out a breathless laugh. “I remember it so fucking well, he said: why do I even bother? We both know your paintings are all bad, at least you're trying. And then he went to get groceries. I destroyed that painting.”

Jungkook frowns. “You ruined it?”

“I tore it apart. Cut into the canvas with scissors, shred it like it was a receipt instead of one of my creations. And I- I looked at it, looked at the mess and that was when it kicked in.”

“What did?”

Taehyung squints his eyes, as if he's trying to remember something. “That I couldn't just stay there and let him ruin me like that. I destroyed one of my paintings, I was disgusted with myself.”

“It wasn't your fault.”

“Yeah, well, it sure as hell felt like it was.” Taehyung sighs. “So I just grabbed my shit, all my clothes and ran. I stayed in a hotel for a few weeks, my phone was going crazy with missed calls so I blocked his number. Went back to my studio to get as many of my paintings as I could, called Jin-hyung and begged him to let me crash at his place in Seoul for a while. Jimin doesn't know this, but I had been in Korea for a month already before I told him I was back. Jin-hyung helped me get back on my feet, helped me find a new place. I owe him everything, really.” Taehyung looks at him and his eyes soften. “Don't look at me like that, I'm fine.”

“I'm so sorry.” Jungkook manages to say after he swallows the lump in his throat. “Jesus, Tae, I'm so sorry.”

Taehyung leans in, bumps his nose against Jungkook's. “But we're gonna be fine. Aren't we? We'll be just fine.”

Jungkook sighs, kisses Taehyung on the lips and then rubs his arm. “I missed you a lot.”

“Sorry about France. Like, I'm not going. You know that, right?”

“Yeah.”

“We're gonna be fine.” Taehyung cups his face. “We're gonna be fine?”

“God, yeah.” Jungkook breathes out. “We're gonna be just fine.”



 




 

Changes are slow.

But there are many things that are slow. The way Taehyung paints is slow. The way he talks when he's sleepy. His steps when he wants to take his time during a walk, because the clouds are so pretty in the sky and the sun looks just right. The way his smile spreads when Jungkook reminds him that he's his muse. The flush that creeps on his cheeks when Jungkook kisses him like he's got nothing else in the world. The way he stops being afraid of answering the phone if it's an unknown number. His breathing when he sleeps.

Changes are slow.

What's also slow is the way Taehyung tells Jungkook he loves him.

He's tracing the lines of his features again as they lay on their bed, bodies still sweaty and sensitive, still flushed and sated. Taehyung has his eyes closed and his lips parted, gold on his skin like the sun decided to bathe him with it.

“Hey.” he whispers once his fingers graze the slope of Jungkook's lips.

“Mmh?”

“I'm your muse.”

“You are.”

“And you love me?”

“I do.”

“You're my muse, too.”

Jungkook stops breathing, feels his chest clench when he sees the smile that slowly, so slowly, stretches his lips.

“Oh my God, Jungkook.” Taehyung says, he whispers like he's in awe. “I'm so in love with you.”

Jungkook cries and Taehyung keeps his eyes closed and his fingers keep moving to make sure he doesn't ever forget what he looks like.



Changes are slow.

Loneliness, too, is slow. But Jungkook is getting better at filling the hollowness in his chest with more art, more Taehyung, more and more and so much more, everything he can take, he'll have it all.

Changes and loneliness are slow so they both keep leaving the lights on when they go to sleep because, this way, if one of them has a nightmare they won't wake up just to find more darkness.

Changes are slow.

Loneliness still hides well.

But Love is slow and it hides well, too.

Jungkook knows it all.



 

 

 


 







“Show me.”

Jungkook frowns behind his menu. “Now?”

“Now.”

“Won't wait for dessert?”

“Fuck dessert, I don't know that bitch.” Taehyung grins. “Show me.”

Jungkook rolls his eyes but still reaches down to get the paper bag he put on the fancy floor of the restaurant when they got to their table.

He hands it to Taehyung who squeals and immediately looks inside.

Taehyung dyed his hair of a soft honey blond a few days ago, it suits him so well that Jungkook almost got mad when he came back from the salon. It's still too long, but Taehyung likes his hair long.

He reaches into the bag and gets the book out. He looks at it for a few seconds, a slow smile forming already. He places it carefully on the table, keeps looking.

How I see.” Taehyung reads. “It's a nice title, love.”

“You always say you like how I see the world.”

“And I love how you see me.” Taehyung snorts. “Jesus, I'm on the fucking cover.”

Jungkook frowns. “What's the problem with that?”

“The problem is that you publish your first book and, amongst all the fucking wonderful photos you took, you chose my stupid face for the cover.”

“Your stupid face is beautiful.”

“Not the point.” Taehyung looks up at him and he grins. “I'm so proud I could cry.”

“Don't.”

“My pretty baby published his first book, should I tell every person in this restaurant?”

“Do you want me to break up with you?”

Taehyung giggles, a sound that is still so endearing to Jungkook. “We'll go through it once we're back home, yeah? Now I'm really hungry I just need food.”

“Same.” Jungkook bites off a smile. “Not gonna lie; I'm nervous.”

“I know right?” Taehyung straightens his shoulders. “This is it. This is the moment. Shit, he's coming.”

Jungkook turns around and sees a waiter walking to their table, dressed in an elegant uniform, a black velvet vest and pristine white shirt tucked in fitted pants.

“Good evening.” he says, smiles pleasantly, puts a bottle of water on the table. “Are you ready to order?”

“We are.” Taehyung says, his hands are fucking shaking around the menu.

“What would you like for starters?”

“I'll have a Salade de Chèvre Chaud.” Taehyung replies. “He will have the Salmon Tartare.”

The waiter nods. “And for the main course?”

Jungkook holds his breath, he sees Taehyung's eyes glinting.

Escargots.”















THE END