Namjoon holds up his hands before Yoongi can even say anything. “I don’t want excuses,” he says quietly. “I just want the truth.”
Yoongi’s mouth shuts with a little click and he studies Namjoon’s face closely. He doesn’t look angry, or disgusted or like he wants to punch something—he mostly looks fed up, and maybe a little upset. “You’re not…mad?” Yoongi asks cautiously.
“What good would that do?” Namjoon responds, rubbing his forehead. “I’m sure you had your reasons to hide…all of this. I’m a little hurt that you kept all of it from me—I mean, it’s my apartment too—but mostly I want to know what’s going on.”
From his spot on the table, Hoseok groans, eyelids flickering.
Seokjin has a guilty look on his face, and he only looks guiltier as he says, “Namjoon-ah, there’s not much we can tell you.”
Namjoon takes his shoes off and goes to stand in front of them, a steely look in his eye. “You owe me the truth.”
Seokjin’s face hardens. “I don’t owe you anything, Namjoon. You have served your use—I’m just sorry that you had to find out in the end.”
Namjoon looks at Seokjin in disbelief and then actually laughs.
Yoongi looks between the two of them, confused. “Am I missing something here?”
“I’m not an idiot, hyung,” Namjoon says, chortling. “I knew you were lying about something from the very beginning. I just pretended like I didn’t, because I still wanted to see you. Didn’t you think all the excuses I had for going out sounded too convenient?”
Now it’s Seokjin’s turn to freeze in disbelief. “I—you said it was for research—“
Namjoon gives Seokjin a look he must’ve picked up from Yoongi. “You think going out for barbecue was research?”
Seokjin tries for words and fails. He desperately tries to reorient himself. He’d severely underestimated Namjoon, who, it seemed, had seen through his plan—and his magic, at that—from the very beginning.
“I had to—I mean, I thought you wouldn't find out,” Seokjin sputters.
Namjoon makes a sound halfway between amusement and annoyance. “I can see right through you, you know.”
Yoongi raises an eyebrow at that and Seokjin ducks to hide his face. He’s never felt so…exposed. Unprepared. Outmatched. Kim Namjoon has beat Kim Seokjin at his own game and Seokjin has no idea what to do with himself now that he’s lost.
“I feel bad,” Seokjin admits, feeling very, very small. “I’m sorry.” The truth is this: he likes Namjoon. He likes the way Namjoon talks to him like he’s an equal, likes the way Namjoon gets excited about things. He like the way Namjoon smiles, likes the dimples in his cheeks and the way that he says Seokjin’s name. He likes going out for ramen and hiking up hills and through forests—he likes it all. And Seokjin knows he’s in way over his head (it’s only been a number of weeks since they’ve met!) but he already knows that losing Namjoon might be the worst thing that could happen to him.
“I’ll forgive you,” Namjoon starts, and Seokjin can’t help the way his heart jumps in his chest. “But,” Namjoon continues, “only if you explain everything. From start to finish.”
Yoongi, who’s been edging towards his room, freezes guiltily in place when Namjoon narrows his eyes at him. “You too, hyung. Nice tattoo, by the way. I can’t believe I didn’t notice that before now.”
“Just wait,” Yoongi mutters darkly. “It moves. And talks to me.” As if on cue, the tattoo bursts into movement. Namjoon watches a pair of hands sign something the snake around Yoongi’s wrist, which is being pestered by a black cat. And that’s only his forearm.
There’s a beat of silence as Namjoon watches, then another. “Yeah,” Namjoon says slowly, swallowing hard. “The whole story. From the top.”
“But the law—“ Seokjin interjects.
“Seokjin,” Yoongi says dryly, “Namjoon just walked in on you magically healing a bullet wound on another witch.”
“Hmm?” Hoseok says groggily, lifting his head from the table and looking around. “Am I dead?” His eyes find Namjoon, and he smiles, still a bit dazed. “Oh, hey. It’s the ordinary! Are we gonna finally tell him?”
Seokjin purses his lips—he still doesn’t like the idea of breaking the law—but doesn’t object further.
Yoongi sighs, gesturing to the couch. “You’ll probably want to sit down,” he tells Namjoon. “It’s kind of a long story, and it started when Park Jimin disconnected his soul from his body.”
By the time Yoongi is done, it’s late afternoon. Everyone’s migrated to the couch: Hoseok, cleaned off and wrapped up in a lot of gauze; Seokjin, who interjects when Yoongi starts talking about the High Council, and Namjoon, who listens intently, absorbing everything he hears with startling calmness.
“You’re taking this incredibly well,” Seokjin comments—he’s still acting weird, too. Yoongi thinks he’s probably waiting for Namjoon’s verdict. Which is hilarious if Yoongi thinks about it: immensely powerful witch Kim Seokjin, waiting for the decision of absolutely-fucking-ordinary Kim Namjoon.
“I’ve lived here for my whole life,” Namjoon says. “I’ve always known that there was something. I just didn’t know it would be the existence of a completely functional and entirely separate witch community.”
Hoseok snorts. “The High Council’d be thrilled to hear that,” he says. “They love keeping things separate. Especially the witches and the ordinaries.”
Seokjin shoots him a freezing look. “It’s for safety, Hoseok, you know that. They want to keep any ordinaries from getting hurt and stop any witches from being dissected.”
Hoseok holds up his hands. “I’m not trying to start anything, hyung. I was just saying. Besides, I heard back from Jisoo. She’s looking into stuff for me. Thinks it might have to do with some groups in the north.”
“I still can’t believe there’s a magical mafia,” Namjoon says, shaking his head. “Like, a government, I get. Mailmen on broomsticks, fine. The fact that Yoongi’s got a bunch of spirits trapped on his arm—well, actually, that’s kind of bizarre, but witch gangsters? And they shot you, too.”
Hoseok winces, pressing a hand to his chest. “Yeah.”
“’Yeah?’” Seokjin echoes dubiously. “You're not going to tell us why?”
“It's embarrassing,” Hoseok whines. “I'm good at my job, hyung. I've never been caught before. And I was just sniffing around—talking with an old contact who used to have ties to pay-to-hire mercs.”
“Mercenaries?” Yoongi asks, eyes widening. “You think Jimin was kidnapped by mercenaries?”
“I’m sure of it,” Hoseok says grimly. “My contact confirmed it directly.”
“Who hired them?” Seokjin demands, curling his fingers. “I swear, I’m going to kill anyone that’s even laid a finger on Jimin—”
“Whoa, whoa,” Hoseok says, patting Seokjin on the shoulder before he can do something like set the couch on fire or blast someone through a wall. “I hate to break it to you, hyung, but…I don’t know who hired them. That’s when I was shot. My contact, too—only, they weren’t warded against the memory wipe. I only managed to confirm that someone had been hired. I don’t know what group, or who they were paid by.”
Seokjin slumps forward, looking hopeless again. “And we were so close.”
“I’m sorry, hyung,” Hoseok says, looking truly apologetic.
“Don’t apologize,” Seokjin answers tiredly. “It’s not your fault. Clearly, someone didn’t want you getting any closer to the truth. I’m glad you managed to get to me before you were hurt worse.”
Hoseok offers Seokjin a thin smile. “It’s the least I could do.”
The group falls into silence. Yoongi digests this newest bit of information.
At least we have a lead, chiquito, even if it’s small, Gonzales offers. It’s more than we had before.
But it revealed a whole layer of complications we really don’t need, Akane rebukes.
Money, B. Gates says sadly. It can be poisonous unless you’re careful.
All the voices pause, waiting for Jimin’s input.
We’ll figure things out, Jimin says hesitantly. One problem at a time.
Yoongi can’t help but notice the dullness in his voice—he’d taken a morale hit, just like the rest of them.
“Well,” Hoseok says cautiously, breaking the silence, “I guess I should be getting home—”
“No,” Seokjin says at once. “Absolutely not. It’s not safe. You could get hurt again.”
“Hyung,” Hoseok responds, placating, “I can’t just move in here—it’d be an intrustion of Yoongi’s and Namjoon’s space—”
“It’s fine,” Namjoon pipes up. He turns to Yoongi, who’d just opened his mouth to object. “Right? It’s okay if he stays?”
Yoongi narrows his eyes. He doesn’t know what his best friend’s playing at—does it look like they have enough room in their tiny-ass apartment for a fourth person? But Namjoon’s giving him a pleading look (which he’ll most definitely have to explain later) and Yoongi can’t find it in his heart to say no.
“Fine,” he grumbles. “But all guests will be sleeping in the living room.”
Relief is clear on Seokjin’s face. “Thank you, Yoongi. Really.”
Seokjin’s earnestness doesn’t sit right with Yoongi—it’s odd, and not something he’s accustomed to after weeks of frosty attitude—so he just shrugs. “Don’t thank me too soon. You might be sleeping on the floor tonight.”
“I’ll just bring in another table and a couple of futons and everyone will be fine,” Seokjin says, scanning the room—not that there’s a single square centimeter of space available for anything he’s planning.
“How the fuck are you going to squeeze more furniture into here?” Yoongi asks dubiously.
“I’m going to add space,” Seokjin says, like it’s obvious. “How else would I do it?”
“Oh, sure, add space,” Yoongi mutters crossly. “Sorry that I forgot about the whole magic thing. My bad.”
Seokjin ignores Yoongi and turns to Hoseok. “Do you have any ideas as to what we can do with this new lead?”
Hoseok takes a moment to think. “There’s not much I can do on my front,” he says slowly. “All we can do is wait for my other sources to come through. I told them to lay low for a little bit, though—I don’t want them getting hurt.”
Surprisingly, it’s Namjoon who speaks up next. “You guys said you still don’t know how to get Park Jimin back into his body, right?”
Ooh, if he says what I think he’s going to say I’m going to be thrilled, Akane giggles. I want to see the witch’s face!
“No,” Seokjin answers, clearly unsure as to where Namjoon’s going with this. “We’re looking, but it hasn’t been fruitful research.”
Namjoon nods. “Right. That’s because you’ve only been looking through books. But with the Internet, I’m sure you’d find something much faster.”
Hoseok makes the connection at the same time Yoongi does.
“Oh hell yes,” Hoseok says.
“Absolutely not, ” Yoongi interjects at the same time. There’s no way he’s letting Namjoon get involved in this, even if it’s just research. Seokjin’s already broken his promise to keep Yoongi’s roommate totally oblivious, and Yoongi’s not about to take a second loss and let Namjoon research with them as well. Nope. Not happening.
“Hear me out,” Namjoon tells Yoongi, and turns back to Seokjin. “I speak English and Korean fluently, and my Japanese is good as well. I know how to work the Internet. I have access to all the school databases, as well as all the online libraries. All those printed-out webpages, hyung? Those were me.”
Seokjin blinks at the intensity in Namjoon’s words, looking half-convinced. Yoongi sighs. Namjoon’s greatest fear—right after not knowing anything—is that one day, people will stop turning to him for help. Yoongi can see it his best friend’s posture, rigid with anxiety—he wants so desperately to help, to answer questions and solve problems.
“We have to figure out a spell anyway,” Hoseok adds helpfully—or unhelpfully, in Yoongi’s opinion, because how dare he take Namjoon’s side. “It’ll go a lot faster if we have Namjoon helping us.”
“Am I not good enough, or something?” Yoongi asks cooly.
“Hyung, you barely know how to work Twitter,” Namjoon says, laughing. “I wouldn’t expect you to be able to sort through subReddits, much less even find relevant information.”
Yoongi clamps his mouth shut. Namjoon has a point. Unfortunately.
“So, he’s in?” Hoseok asks excitedly, wincing when he sits up too quickly.
Seokjin casts a sidelong glance at Yoongi. He looks almost apologetic, and Yoongi rolls his eyes.
“He’s in,” Seokjin repeats, and there’s nothing Yoongi can do about it.
December comes and caps all the houses in snow, covering driveways with glittering white blankets. Seokjin is good on his word and magically adds extra space, which throws Yoongi’s depth perception off for a couple days and he stubs his toe on the new, extra-large table so often he begins to expect it.
Hoseok wordlessly accepts the role of supreme mediator, which Yoongi slowly grows to appreciate more and more with each passing day—especially because Seokjin and Namjoon have been so goddamn weird around each other since Namjoon heard the truth. It’s like they don’t know how to act anymore. It’s hugely annoying, because they’re awkward and stilted around each other but Yoongi catches them exchanging flirty looks, like they’re physically unable to keep their eyes off each other.
Also, much to Yoongi’s annoyance, Namjoon proves to be incredibly helpful. With Hoseok’s help (Yoongi and Seokjin are rendered useless when it comes to technology) Namjoon finds more in two afternoons than they’d gathered over the last three weeks.
“I have no idea how you do it,” Yoongi groans on Tuesday night, four days after Namjoon had gotten the truth. “You’re a fucking med student and you’re over here cracking magical mysteries like you’re not already dying from schoolwork.”
Namjoon looks up from his computer, pushing his glasses back up his nose. “It’s not hard, hyung,” he says. “You just have to type stuff into the search bar.” He writes something down in English, scribbles the translation down beneath it, and passes it to Hoseok. “Tell Seokjin-hyung to look through the index for ‘nature-based incantation’.”
Hoseok gives Namjoon a look. “He’s sitting five feet away,” he tells Namjoon. “Tell him yourself.” Seokjin, from his spot on the couch, tenses at the sound of his name.
“It’s easier if you do it,” Namjoon says, like Seokjin can’t hear him.
Hoseok looks at Yoongi and rolls his eyes, like can you believe these two?
Why can’t they just talk? Jimin asks plainly. Everything would be solved if they just say how they’re feeling.
“It’s not that simple, Jimin-ah,” Yoongi mumbles, rubbing his eyes. The words on the page he’s reading swim threateningly.
“What?” Namjoon says, confused. Hoseok heaves himself out of his chair, a little stiff, to go hand Namjoon’s notes off to Seokjin.
“Not talking to you,” Yoongi answers, a little embarrassed. “Just, ah, Jimin.”
Namjoon gives Yoongi a wry smile. “The guy on your arm?”
Tell Namjoon I say hi. And that I appreciate his help, Jimin prompts.
“You keep saying that,” Yoongi grumbles, but relays Jimin’s message anyway.
“Tell him that it’s no problem,” Namjoon says, shrugging.
“He can hear you,” Yoongi responds, rolling his eyes.
I think it’s funny, Jimin laughs. How he thinks you’re some kind of spiritual medium. Like a fortune teller.
He also gets a little nauseous when he looks at the tattoo, Akane adds on, giggling. You can tell by the way his face goes white. I’m still waiting for him to vomit.
You’re a terrible person, Gonzales remarks.
I never claimed to be a person, bunny, Akane says. I’m a ninetails. What did you expect?
Person, fox. Es lo mismo, whatever, Gonzales scoffs.
“--and it’s strange, sometimes, to only hear half the conversation,” Namjoon is saying when Yoongi tunes back in.
“Right,” Yoongi says, though he has no idea what Namjoon’s talking about.
“See,” Namjoon exclaims victoriously. “There it is! It’s so interesting—I don’t know how I didn’t notice it before. You leave whatever’s happening to listen to the spirits on your arm.”
“Are you making fun of me?” Yoongi asks suspiciously.
Namjoon laughs. “Only a little. Mostly, I think it’s good. You’re always so hyper-focused on the present. It’s healthy to disconnect every now and then.”
Aww, Jimin coos. That’s so sweet. Say thank you, hyung.
“Thanks, I guess,” Yoongi mumbles, cheeks heating.
Namjoon nods and stretches his arms above his head. “Hey, it’s only ten! We’ve still got plenty of time before I come off my coffee high!”
Yoongi blinks at his best friend, and then at the book on the table. “Absolutely fucking not, Joon-ah. There’s no way I can keep reading this dusty-ass book. My eyes are five seconds from falling out of my head.”
Hoseok, finished with his explanation, returns to the table. “So don’t, hyung.”
“When did you start calling me hyung?” Yoongi snaps, though it lacks heat. Hoseok grins cheekily at him.
“When you let me bleed all over your old table and then let me sleep in your house,” Hoseok responds, and Yoongi resists the urge to throw something at him. Behind him, Seokjin is sending yearning looks at Namjoon’s bowed head.
“Fuck this,” Yoongi says after a minute of watching his friends. “The atmosphere is so fucking weird in here. I’m out.”
Namjoon lifts his head, making Seokjin squeak and fall off the couch. Everyone gives him a weird look.
This is so unlike Seokjin-hyung, Jimin says, sounding concerned. Are you sure he’s not sick?
Yoongi presses his lips together—Seokjin’s love life is not something he’d like to discuss right in front of the witch’s face. “I’ll be back soon. Anyway, I have some photos to take that I really should get started on.”
“Okay,” Namjoon says, not taking his eyes off Seokjin. “I’ll be here.”
“Don’t leave me,” Hoseok whisper-pleads. “I can’t handle passing messages between them. I wish they’d just make out already.”
Yoongi smirks. “Best of luck.”
He zips up his coat and slings his camera around his neck. He gives into Jimin’s nagging and puts a hat on, too, just so the younger will shut up.
It’s snowing when Yoongi opens the front door of their apartment building. There’s a couple of winged ghost-cats drinking from Mrs. Do’s bowl of milk, but otherwise the world—both spirit and real—is quiet. Everything feels muffled and hushed, and Yoongi watches his breath turn silver in the air for a moment.
It’s beautiful, Jimin says reverently. I’ve never been down the hill during winter.
“Yeah,” Yoongi murmurs. “Winter’s my favorite season here.”
He starts down the sidewalk, boots crunching through fresh snow.
Seokjin-hyung used to come over on the first big snowfall, Jimin says. We’d build forts and have snowball battles. He’d always win, of course, but only because he’d cheat and use his magic.
“You really like the guy, huh."
Of course, Jimin responds, like it’s obvious. He’s been my only friend for years. At this point, he’s more like an older brother. I don’t know where I’d be—or who I’d be—without him.
There’s a story behind Jimin’s last sentence, and Yoongi experiences the curious sensation of wanting to know more.
“Why’s that?” He asks outright, then winces—maybe he shouldn’t have said it so bluntly. Whenever Jimin speaks of his past, he sounds sad—deeply sad, like it's an old hurt he's used to bearing.
There’s a part of Yoongi that kind of wants to take some of that weight off.
He doesn’t know how he feels about that part of him.
Hyung, always so forward, Jimin says, and he doesn’t sound offended or upset. It’s a hard story to tell, I’ll be honest.
Yoongi waits, fiddling with the settings on his camera. A car passes them, quiet through the snow.
My mother, Jimin starts unsurely. Well. She was a lot like your grandmother, I think. I already told you she traded her mental strength for my life, right?
“Yeah,” Yoongi says, sticking his camera back into his case and turning down the main road. Up ahead, the lights of downtown wink brightly. “You were a sick baby?”
I was supposed to be stillborn, Jimin says quietly. All my mother wanted was me. She gave everything up just so she could have that. And so I was alive, and I was special— too special. She kept me close to her, loved me, taught me everything she knew, and I never got to give her anything back. I only got to watch her fade away, right before my eyes.
“Oh,” Yoongi says after a minute, letting Jimin’s words sink in. “Holy shit.”
Jimin sniffs and his voice is close—so close that Yoongi can almost imagine the feeling of Jimin’s breath on his cheek.
Seokjin blames himself, I think, Jimin continues on, voice thick with tears. He promised me he’d fix her. I know it was an impossible thing but—I was so young and I think some part of me actually hoped that Seokjin could do something.
“And it turned out he couldn’t,” Yoongi says heavily, feeling Jimin’s sadness press against his heart, worn smooth and a little cold.
My heart broke, Jimin says. And Seokjin watched, and couldn’t do anything to stop it.
Yoongi thinks about Namjoon, who had reached out the minute he’d seen the fear and pain on Yoongi’s face. He thinks about how Jackson hadn’t let go, even when Yoongi tried to push him away And even Yugyeom, who didn’t laugh or judge him for a second for breaking down into tears at the funeral.
“Grief,” Yoongi starts, unsure if he’s capable of putting it into words, “is felt even in the hearts of friends—especially when there’s nothing they can do but hold out a hand and wait.”
It’s the waiting that’s the hardest, Jimin says, and sniffs again. I’m sorry for getting all emotional. I know that’s not what you want.
Yoongi wipes at his eyes before his eyelashes can freeze. “I’m not so good at this stuff. Words never really were my strong suit.”
You’re a good listener, hyung, Jimin says. It doesn’t hurt to talk to you. Not like it used to.
Yoongi swallows hard, his heart pounding hard in his chest. “I’m glad, Jimin-ah. And I don’t mind if you tell me stuff.” Not anymore, he adds on in his head. He doesn’t know when, or how, but Jimin’s voice has become part of the quiet background noise that is Yoongi’s life, woven in with Namjoon’s comments and Hoseok’s laugh and even the sharp cadence of Seokjin’s scolding. “It’s only fair if I listen to you, since you’re forced to listen to me.” He’s overwhelmed again by shame and guilt—at Jimin’s situation, at how shitty he’d acted in the beginning, about the mess they were in and how they weren’t making any progress.
You’re a good person, hyung, says Jimin, like he can sense Yoongi’s thoughts. You keep telling me it’s not my fault. Now I’m telling you: it’s not your fault, either.
“I know,” Yoongi says gruffly. “It’s the fucking mafia’s fault, or something.”
Or something, Jimin says, and the laughter that fills Yoongi’s ears lightens the mood immediately. Their sadness is placed neatly aside, dealt with and wrung out.
Yoongi walks a little further. Dark storefronts still manage to look welcoming, thanks to the snow and the lights.
What’s your photography assignment? Jimin asks when Yoongi pulls his camera out again.
“I have to take twenty pictures of the same color,” Yoongi says. “It’s due in a week, and I don’t have a color picked out.”
You could do red, Jimin supplies helpfully. There’s red everywhere.
Yoongi hums. “What’s your favorite color?”
Light blue, but I don’t think—
“Light blue it is,” Yoongi says. He’s lucky he’s got a VR lens, or else night photography would kick his ass (his tripod broke when Namjoon tried to use it to prop their TV up) and after a couple adjustments to shutter speed and aperture size, he snaps a picture of a neon sign advertising fortune telling.
Hyung, Jimin says quietly—but it’s a bashful kind of quiet, the kind that would go with pink cheeks and a small smile. You didn’t have to.
Yoongi allows himself to wonder what Jimin’s smile looks like, but decides it’s probably something too special for him to picture.
“I wanted to,” Yoongi replies.
Jimin’s answering sigh is affectionate and bemused.
There’s a little aww in the background that sounds like B. Gates, and the silence from the other spirits is broken. Familiar voices flood Yoongi’s senses again and the world no longer consists of just him and Park Jimin.
I didn’t know you could shut up for that long, Akane, Gonzales says sarcastically. I’m impressed, loca.
I’m polite when it counts, Akane sniffs delicately. Get off your high horse.
Yoongi snorts. “The day that you both stop arguing will be the day the world has truly ended.”
His phone buzzes and he puts his camera aside in favor of checking it.
namjoon: uh hyung, come home
namjoon: we found something
namjoon: you’re going to want to see this.
Seokjin’s guilt is eating him alive.
He knows he should’ve already told Namjoon about the confusion magic. He knows he owes Namjoon an apology for his behavior.
It’s just…he doesn’t know how. He’s never had to apologize for using magic. He’s never had to patch up a relationship, much less one with an ordinary.
An ordinary that he likes a lot, not to mention.
His luck has been absolutely awful lately, now that he thinks about it. His most recent meeting had gone pretty horribly—it was all arguments about possible preventative measures against the sudden spike in magical crime. In the end, First Councilman Nam Chul-soon had stepped in, smoothing tensions and uncurling fists. Seokjin didn’t know the High Council disagreed so often, or so violently, all red faces and pointed words. He’d sat there for a couple minutes afterwards as the First Councilman gathered his things.
Do not worry too much about disagreement, he’d told Seokjin kindly, laying a hand on his shoulder. Conflict is a learning experience. It teaches us the true value of communication and peace.
Seokjin tries to keep those words close to his heart as he sneaks another glance at Namjoon. Nam Chul-soon knows what he’s talking about—he’s been a role model and a personal mentor to Seokjin for almost two years now—but Seokjin can’t help but think that this particular problem might not be solvable via political diplomacy.
Jeongguk, meanwhile , has not stopped contacting him. Seokjin woke up this morning with his pockets overflowing with transmitted notes—though the spell to send things from one location to another is rarely used anymore, what with the postal service so quick and cheap—all from Jeongguk. He’s been begging Seokjin to get him out of his parents’ house as rules have gotten strict and his crazy schedule even stricter, but there’s not much Seokjin can do except ask the Jeons nicely to stop trying to mold their son into something he clearly does not want to be.
His news stills weighs heavily on Seokjin, delivered with a worried-at lip and wide eyes. The crime rate’s spiking, and my parents have been talking to Nam Chul-soon and I don’t know why.
The Jeons have famously never gotten along with the High Council, hanging on to the remnants of an incredibly militaristic viewpoint. Which, in Seokjin’s opinion, makes it all the more worrying that the Jeons and Nam Chul-soon are communicating.
He hasn’t told anyone the details of Jeongguk’s news—just that the mafia’s been making more moves. Not even Hoseok knows about the Jeons and Nam Chul-soon.
It’s probably nothing, Seokjin reassures himself. Nam Chul-soon is First Councilman for a reason. He has seen firsthand the care and the fierce pride the Councilman holds for the witch population—he has sworn to protect them, and he’s done exactly that for many, many years. If he’s being honest, it’s the Jeons he’s more worried about, not the First Councilman. Seokjin trusts Nam Chul-soon absolutely.
There is no reason to worry, Seokjin thinks, and he believes it.
Namjoon puts his cellphone down. “Yoongi’s coming back,” he announces.
Hoseok pumps his fist victoriously. “We found something!”
Seokjin eases himself off the couch, giving Namjoon a wide berth and trying not make eye contact. As soon as Namjoon is back on his computer, clicking away at the keys (how he does it so fast, Seokjin will never know) Seokjin allows himself to stare a little. Namjoon really is good-looking, which makes it very, very hard for Seokjin to focus. He can just imagine Jimin snickering at him for making such a fool of himself.
Yoongi’s back a couple minutes later, shaking snow off of his coat and hat. His nose is red and he looks…content, almost. Happy at the very least. Seokjin has no doubt that it has to do with Jimin, who generally has that effect. Seokjin just didn’t expect Min Yoongi, of all people, to be hit as strongly as he did. Seokjin doesn’t know half of the things Yoongi hears, but every now and then Yoongi will smile to himself and duck his head, murmuring replies to a voice Seokjin cannot hear.
However, with what they’ve just found, that might change sooner than they think.
There’s a small book propped open on the table. It’s mostly unreadable, but there is one title that Namjoon had managed to decode. It’s in an old form of Chinese, but with a couple hours of mind-melding translating, they had something.
“In calling a soul back to its body?’” Yoongi reads, pressing his fingers to the page. “What does this have to do with anything?”
Namjoon spins his computer around so Yoongi can see. “I didn’t quite find the book, but I found what the book references here.” He looks to Hoseok. “Can you ask Seokjin to explain?”
Hoseok huffs and turns to Seokjin. “Namjoon wants you to explain. And can you please stop pretending like you can’t hear one another?”
“Please tell Namjoon that I’ll gladly explain,” Seokjin replies. He’s embarrassed about having to use Hoseok as a mediator, but he and Namjoon still can’t make eye contact.
“Tell him yourself,” Hoseok grumbles, slumping in his seat and crossing his arms.
Seokjin ignores his friend and clears his throat. Yoongi’s listening to Jimin, based on the way his head is tilted, and then rolls up his sleeve. As usual, the ink takes a little of Seokjin’s breath away—the tattoo really is beautiful, in all of its bright colors and unexpected intricacies. It covers every available inch of Yoongi’s arm, from the roses on his knuckles to the English words in bold on the outside of his arm to the swatch of nighttime on his bicep.
Is it good news, hyung? Jimin writes out on Yoongi’s forearm.
“Thankfully, it is,” Seokjin answers aloud. “We found a ritual that might help Jimin.”
Yoongi winces. “He’s shouting.”
Oh my god, hyung! That’s amazing!
Seokjin smiles. “It was mostly Namjoon. And it’s only a title, since the rest is in a language neither Hoseok or I could recognize. It’s old magic—it looks like a combination of green- and soul-based magic. ”
Does anyone even practice green magic anymore?
“Is that plant magic?” Yoongi asks, turning to Seokjin.
Seokjin wrinkles his brow, trying to recall what he’d learned in school. “Yes, it’s primarily plant-based…um, it’s a lot of physical mixtures? Not much spell-casting, if that’s what you’re wondering. Most of the green witches that remain are in Scandinavia and the UK. Think Wales, Norway, Iceland, etcetera.” Seokjin slides his eyes towards Namjoon, who looks incredibly interested and is doing a poor job of hiding it. “I can’t say I’ve ever met one.”
“Do they talk to rocks and trees and stuff?” Hoseok muses, tapping his fingers on his chin. “I swear I’ve got a cousin that talks to rocks. Tae-something. Taemin? Taejung? Something like that? He’s not invited to family reunions and stuff because he’s a little…odd. As in, he supposedly lives in the forest and grows mushrooms. At least, that’s what I've heard.”
Seokjin blinks at Hoseok. He knows it’s Hoseok’s job to know people and to collect information, but sometimes Hoseok’s connections are just plain bizarre. What modern South Korean witch knows someone that practices green magic of all things—and is much less related to them?
“What the fuck,” Yoongi says, like he can hear what Seokjin is thinking. “Hoseok, how the hell?”
“How the hell what?” Hoseok asks, looking genuinely confused for a moment. “Oh, are you wondering how I seem to know everybody?”
“You’re related to a green witch, ” Seokjin emphasises.
“Coincidence,” Hoseok says, shrugging. “I just like listening to people, is all. Sometimes that’s all they need, you know? Someone who’ll listen. Someone who’ll look at them straight and not judge.”
Yoongi leans back in his chair, looking impressed. Seokjin feels pride swell in his chest—Hoseok, for all his eccentricities, nearly-illegal side jobs and terrible broom riding—is a good person at the end of the day. A good friend. Seokjin would be incredibly lacking without him.
“The important question is,” Seokjin says, bringing them back to the topic at hand, “is if you can contact him. We need to know if he can decode the rest of the text.”
“I’ll see what I can do,” Hoseok says. Then he frowns. “It might take awhile, though—I have no idea where he lives, and I’m pretty sure he’s only accessible by mail pigeon.”
“Mail pigeon?” Yoongi asks dubiously. “Aren’t you a mailman?”
“I only deliver local mail,” Hoseok informs Yoongi. “And email technically hasn’t been invented in the witch community yet.”
“I find the disparity in technology between us and you guys so fascinating,” Namjoon says. “Your government has worked hard to keep us separated, hmm?”
“This is most definitely illegal right now,” Hoseok tells Namjoon cheerfully. “Which is why Seokjin-hyung is so tense all the time.”
Seokjin glares at Hoseok, flexing his fingers to knock the chair out from underneath his friend.
“Ow, not fair,” Hoseok whines, getting to his feet and rubbing his tailbone. Namjoon’s laughing and Seokjin can’t help but join in. Even Yoongi cracks a smile, his head tilting as he listens to whatever Jimin’s saying.
The pocket of Seokjin’s jacket suddenly gets hot, signaling an incoming letter. He pulls it out a second later—it’s a piece of notebook paper, crumpled and singed at the edges from magic hastily-cast. He unfolds it to reveal Jeongguk’s messy handwriting.
Hyung, it reads, please come meet me quickly. I can’t take my parents anymore. They’re terrible. I have been forced to practice tai chi for the last four hours while my dad throws magical flaming spears at me help help!! love jeongguk.
Seokjin sighs. This kid. He knows Jeongguk’s parents are a incredibly strict, and they push him to levels no normal witch should be pushed to—but then again, Jeongguk’s a bit of a prodigy. By a bit, Seokjin means he’s insanely talented and there’s very little he can’t do. He’s received a number of panic notes from Jeongguk at this point in his life, as Jeongguk seems to think Seokjin can arrange some sort of governmental coup or intervention and break him out of the prison Jeongguk calls home.
“Is it the High Council?” Hoseok asks, leaning over to peer at the note.
“Just Jeongguk,” Seokjin says, smoothing the paper out. “Complaining, again.”
“Well, he does promise ‘a lot of information about high society’ if you bust him out,” Hoseok reads. “Look, it’s right there in the P.S.”
Sure enough, scrawled at the bottom is a hasty message:
P.S. if you need more motivation i can for sure get you an in with all the crazy military witches and i have a lot of information about high society bc didn't you say your friend was missing - jeongguk.
“Who’s this kid?” Yoongi asks. But before Seokjin or Hoseok can answer, understanding crosses Yoongi’s face, head cocked as he listens to Jimin. “Ah. So he’s the one that idolizes you?” He nods at Seokjin, who nods.
“His parents, despite all the nasty things they’ve said to me in the past, started throwing Jeongguk and I together as soon as they found out I was elected to the High Council,” Seokjin explains. “I think they still want us to get married.”
Namjoon chokes on the dregs of his tea. “They what?”
“A political marriage,” Seokjin explains, sure that Namjoon’s heard of those before. “High witch society is like that. Matching me and Jeongguk up would give them immense political standing and a wealth of power on their side.”
“Don’t worry, Joon-ah,” Hoseok says cheerfully, whacking Namjoon on the back. “Seokjin’s too head-over-heels for you to even consider that.”
Namjoon chokes on his tea again and Seokjin feels his face turn bright red. Yoongi crosses his arms and smirks and Hoseok bursts into raucous laughter.
“Anyway,” Seokjin says, trying to gather the remains of his dignity, “I can’t take Jeongguk away from his parents. There’s no broken law. End of story.”
Namjoon laughs nervously and scratches the back of his neck and Seokjin studiously avoids eye contact.
Hoseok looks between the two of them, shaking his head. “So. Are we set here?”
“I fucking hope so,” Yoongi mutters. “I’m exhausted.”
Seokjin spends the rest of the night pretending like he can’t see Namjoon.
Yoongi wakes up in Namjoon’s bed the next morning. His best friend is still passed out next to him, his computer propped open on his stomach. Hoseok’s on his futon at the foot of the bed, surrounded by open books and sheafs of scribbled notes. They’d all moved in there when Namjoon’s computer had died and he’d been too lazy to bring it to the living room.
Yoongi sits up and checks the time, letting out a quiet breath of relief when he sees it’s still before his classes start.
Morning, hyung, Jimin says. How’d you sleep?
“Pretty good,” Yoongi says, stretching his arms above his head. “Namjoon’s got a better mattress than I do, the fucker.”
He slides out of Namjoon’s bed, collecting his socks and unplugging his phone.
You’ve got your photography class today? Jimin asks excitedly.
“Yep,” Yoongi says. Behind him, Namjoon grunts and shifts in bed. One of his arms hangs over the side of the bed, inches above Seokjin’s fingers—Yoongi will bet his whole life’s savings that they fell asleep holding hands, because that’s the kind of person Kim Namjoon is. And Seokjin doesn’t have to worry about not meeting Namjoon’s eyes if the lights are off.
They’re the worst, honestly. Yoongi’s so tired of them skirting around each other that he’s this close to staging an intervention.
They look so peaceful, Jimin says. Then, after a moment’s hesitation, he continues. Do you really think Seokjin-hyung likes Namjoon a lot?
“They fell asleep holding hands, Jiminie,” Yoongi replies, and skirts around Seokjin to open the door. “I’d say he probably likes him a whole lot.”
I’m glad, Jimin says happily. Seokjin works so hard at his job and to take care of me. I think he deserves to have someone take care of him for once.
“Namjoon is pretty good at taking care of people,” Yoongi mumbles, setting up the coffee machine as soon as he’s in the kitchen. “Even if he doesn’t like to admit it.”
I can see that, Jimin says, and it sounds like he’s smiling.
Yoongi, as he’s been doing a lot recently, wonders what Jimin looks like he’s smiling. He wonders what Jimin just looks like in general, actually. Is he tall and slender? Pale and dark-haired? Freckled and tanned?
Also, hyung, Jimin says, interrupting Yoongi’s thoughts, you called me Jiminie.
“Are you making fun of me?” Yoongi demands, though his hands are shaking and he nearly spills coffee grounds all over himself.
No, Jimin responds, but his voice is lilting and bright and yes, he’s most definitely teasing Yoongi.
“What’s wrong with a nickname? Seokjin calls you that all the time.” Yoongi slams the lid closed on the coffee machine with a little more heat than necessary.
I don’t have a problem with it, Jimin giggles. I think it’s cute.
Yoongi takes a deep breath through his nose. It’s fine. He’s fine. It’s just Park Jimin, talking into his ear, calling him cute—and fucking giggling, who gave him the goddamn right to do that—he’s fine, not affected, get your fucking act together, Min Yoongi.
I think you may have short-circuited his brain, Jimin, Akane comments snidely.
“Fuck off,” Yoongi huffs, watching the coffee pot fill. “I don’t need this right now.”
“Don’t need what?” Namjoon asks, coming into the kitchen and yawning. “Jesus, what time is it?”
Namjoon nods sleepily. “Wow, the living room’s clean. Did you do this?”
Oh, that would be the brownies, Jimin explains. There’s one on the back of your shoulder that calls in its friends to help at night.
“Um, Jimin says it’s brownies,” Yoongi translates aloud. “They’re the ones that fixed the pipes last month, too.”
“Helpful,” Namjoon remarks. The coffee pot lets out a shrill beep and Yoongi fills his cup to the brim.
Don’t drink it too fast or you’ll burn yourself, Jimin reminds Yoongi.
Yoongi, with a great amount of self-restraint, waits a minute for his coffee to cool before taking a sip.
Namjoon’s flowery tea fills the apartment with its aroma, but Yoongi’s sure it’s the coffee that brings Hoseok and Seokjin stumbling into the kitchen as well.
“I’m too tired to cook,” Seokjin says, flopping down at the table. “I stayed up way too late last night and I have a meeting in an hour.”
“We made so much progress last night, though,” Hoseok reminds him, pouring milk into his coffee as Namjoon adds water to his tea. “We have a really, really solid lead. And in a couple days, I’ll re-contact my sources.”
Seokjin’s face softens. “Hoseok-ah, you don’t need to feel bad or useless. You’ve been an incredible help.”
Hoseok looks vaguely uncomfortable as he shrugs. “I haven’t been doing my job, though.”
“It’s fine,” Seokjin assures him.
“I’m with Seokjin,” Yoongi adds in, and gives Hoseok a smile. “Getting shot was not your fault. Plus, you’ve got your cousin. I feel like he’s gonna be a massive help.”
“That’s if I can find him,” Hoseok says doubtfully.
Seokjin opens his mouth to say something, but stops to reach into his pocket and pull out another magical note.
“It’s Jeongguk,” Seokjin announces flatly.
“Again?” Namjoon asks, sipping his tea.
“For fuck’s sake,” Yoongi mutters. “This kid’s persistent. Must really hate his parents.”
“’Dear hyung,’” Hoseok reads aloud, looking over Seokjin’s shoulder. “’I have been electrocuted five times today because I can’t manage to summon my katanas while I’m fighting off seven surprise attackers. Also I had to eat porridge for breakfast. I’m writing this in the bathroom. That’s how desperate I am. Please save me. I’m dying. Love, Jeongguk.’”
“Electrocution? What the fuck?” Yoongi exclaims, rubbing his forehead. “This guy doesn’t even sound real.”
I’ve met him, Jimin tells Yoongi. He doesn’t look real or act real, either. He’s insane.
“Maybe you should help him,” Namjoon offers. “He sounds serious. I mean, what parents electrocute their kid? Aren’t you concerned?”
“Tell Namjoon—” Seokjin starts, leaning over to Hoseok.
“Oh, for fuck’s sake,” Hoseok cuts in, stomping his foot. “Tell him yourself! He’s right there, hyung!”
Seokjin’s mouth snaps closed and he looks down, muttering something under his breath.
“It’s fine,” Namjoon says mildly. “When Seokjin’s ready to talk to me, I’m ready to listen. But I think he’s got to come to terms with some stuff first.”
Yoongi’s already making a beeline for the door, grabbing his school backpack and pouring the rest of the coffee into a travel mug. “Well, you guys have fun with that,” he says hurriedly. “I am so fucking outta here. Let me know when you guys have kissed and made up. Or even just kissed. Jesus Christ, Namjoon, do something about it. You’re driving me crazy.”
Namjoon’s ears are pink as he opens his mouth to rebuke, but Yoongi slams out of the apartment before anything can be said.
The three of them stare at the closed door. Namjoon looks embarrassed, and Seokjin looks shocked. Hoseok’s got a grim expression on his face as he turns to Seokjin, waving Namjoon away.
“Hyung,” he says, using his most serious voice. “I love you and all, but you seriously need to pull your head out of your ass and tell Namjoon the truth.”
Seokjin curls up, looking unusually small. “I did tell him the truth.”
Hoseok gives his friend a knowing look. “Not the whole truth. You gotta come clean about the confusion magic, too. He deserves to know.”
Seokjin sighs. “I don’t think I can, Hoseokkie. I don’t know how.”
“Sure you do,” Hoseok insists. “Just go up and say that you’re sorry, and that you’re a bit narrow-minded but you really really like him. Bam. There you go.”
Seokjin drops his face into his hands, letting out a despairing noise. “This is so illegal, Hoseok. I shouldn’t even be talking to an ordinary, much less making any kind of confession to him!”
Hoseok puts a hand on Seokjin’s shoulder. “I want to you answer me honestly, okay?”
A nod from Seokjin.
“Do you like Namjoon?”
“Then who cares about laws, hyung? I know it’s your job to uphold them and to enforce them, but shouldn’t you let love be love?”
Seokjin takes a deep, shuddering breath. “I don’t know,” he whispers again, shoulders caving in.
“You do,” Hoseok says, filled with confidence that Seokjin lacks. “You’re just afraid. That’s okay, you know—seeing as you’ve never had to face anything like this before.”
Seokjin lifts his head to glance over at Namjoon, who’s in his room putting on socks. Hoseok watches a myriad of emotion flicker over Seokjin’s face: guilt, shame, yearning—and something fragile, something tender and warm that could grow into something life-changing and beautiful if given the chance.
Hoseok really, really wants Seokjin to give it a chance.
“Go,” Hoseok prompts softly. “He’ll listen. He wants to forgive you as much as you want to apologize.”
It is so weird to be giving Seokjin advice—Seokjin, who has been through so much, who has raised hell and rained it down, who has grit his teeth and powered through the impossible. It is the same man Hoseok sees here, vulnerable and scared and hopeful— so, so, hopeful.
So Seokjin gets up from the chair and sets his jaw. At the same time, Namjoon looks up, and his face is a mirror of Seokjin’s, the same feeling painted across it, clear as day.
Their gazes connect, magnetic, and something cautious—something bright and lovely—starts to bloom.
Yoongi chooses to listen to Jimin instead of pay attention in his photography class. The professor is going on about color composition and lighting effects, which is important, but Yoongi’s mind reflexively snaps over to Jimin whenever he speaks. It’s an unforeseen habit that’s really killing his attention span, but he can’t help it.
I can’t believe we found something, Jimin says. I didn’t think there was anything left that could help me.
Yoongi taps his response into his phone. Is it because the Old Council burned everything?
Not necessarily. There’s just so few witches left that practice soul magic. I think my mother knew one other, and that’s it. Nobody else.
So what about that plant magic, then? Do you really think Hoseok’s got a cousin that can help?
If there’s anybody that can find a green witch, it’s Hoseok. I trust him.
Yoongi hesitates before typing out his response, thumbs hovering over the characters. I just want you to be free.
Jimin is silent for a long beat. That…that really means a lot, hyung.
Yoongi ducks his head as Jimin’s quiet again, this time for longer.
But, Jimin says, I don’t mind being stuck here. At least, not if I’m with you.
The class ends and the professor calls Yoongi’s name before he can leave.
“Min Yoongi,” she muses as he approaches her. “I looked through the draft photos you’ve uploaded so far for the color assignment, and I’m curious: why’d you pick light blue?”
“Ah,” Yoongi says, stuttering a little bit. He searches to find words but can’t, despite the reason being so simple: it’s this guy’s favorite color and I wanted to make him happy. Said guy just happens to be a disconnected soul chilling on his arm.
Yeah, he’s not explaining that.
“I don’t have an issue with it,” the professor assures him, mistaking his muteness for worry. “I just didn’t expect the color choice. Red, maybe, or grey, but certainly not light blue. It’s nice.”
“It’s the favorite color of one of my…friends,” Yoongi finishes lamely. “I didn’t know what else to pick so I just asked him.”
“I see,” the professor says, understanding clearing her face. “Well, whatever works. I’m looking forward to the final product.”
Yoongi bows to her. “Thank you.”
He zips up his coat and pulls his hat down over his ears, answering an incoming call from Jackson as he does so.
“Hyung,” Jackson says, skipping a greeting as usual. “Did you get Yugyeom’s texts?”
“I blocked that shithead’s number a long time ago,” Yoongi grumbles, though it’s not true. He did get Yugyeom’s texts. He just didn’t read them, because Yuygeom never has a good reason for texting anyway.
“Well,” Jackson says impatiently, “he invited us all to dinner at his house. His mom’s made a lot of kimchi and he wants help eating it. Are you in?”
“When is it?”
“Friday,” Jackson informs him. “We were thinking we’d eat and then go out to a bar, or maybe a club.”
“Hard pass on the club,” Yoongi says darkly, looking down at the roses on his knuckles. “Don’t want a repeat of last time.”
Aww, last time was fun, Akane complains. You passed out and everything.
Besides, chiquito, I’d protect you, Gonzales reminds him.
“No club,” Yoongi repeats, for the spirits and for Jackson, who’s protesting. “But sure, I’ll come. I’m sure Seokjin’s tired of cooking for us anyway.”
“Oh, Seokjin! Bring him too, he’s pretty.”
“I don’t know—”
“Yuygeom says bring him, hyung. And it doesn’t even matter if you ask him. Namjoon will take him anyway,” Jackson says smugly. “Have they made out yet?”
“Yuck,” Yoongi says, wrinkling his face. “Thanks for that mental image. I’m hanging up now. You’re the worst.”
“Come pick me up on Friday at five-thirty!” Jackson says, guffawing. “Bye hyung, see you!”
Yoongi hangs up, slightly affronted. Jackson’s a goddamn menace. Actually, scratch that. Everyone in his life is a goddamn menace. And it’s mostly Seokjin’s fault.
Speaking of Seokjin, he must still be at his meeting when Yoongi gets home from all of his classes early in the afternoon, because Hoseok’s the only one home, camped on the couch and running up the wifi bill by watching anime.
“Welcome back,” Hoseok says, absent-minded. “How was school?”
“Why the hell do you care?” Yoongi huffs.
Because he’s your friend, Jimin answers.
“Because I’m your friend, hyung,” Hoseok says at the same time. “So?”
“I hate all my classes except photography,” Yoongi mutters.
“I thought you were good at math?”
“Just because I’m good at it doesn’t mean I like it. I’m doing it because I don’t think I can make a decent living as a photographer.”
Hoseok shrugs, the motion cramped due to his position on the sofa. “If it doesn’t work out you can come learn how to fly a broom and be a postman.”
“I’m good,” Yoongi says. “I prefer to keep both feet on the ground, thanks.”
“Suit yourself. But hey, good news—I asked my grandpa and I do have a cousin that lives in the woods! Dunno if he’s a green witch, though. And I still don’t know where in the woods he lives. But at least I know he exists, and he’s in South Korea! His name is Kim Taehyung and I’m going to find him, I promise.”
Yoongi looks up from where he’s unpacking his backpack. “You’re kidding me.”
Hoseok grins. “Nope, not kidding. I’ll have him by the end of the month, guaranteed.”
“You’re kind of incredible, you know that?” Yoongi says, grinning. “Like, holy shit. A forest-dwelling cousin.”
“Glad I’m on your side, right?” Hoseok asks, which would be scary as hell if he wasn’t beaming.
I’m so glad, Jimin says, relieved. Tell Hoseok-hyung I’m glad.
“Jimin’s glad you found your cousin,” Yoongi says. “He says thanks.”
“Aw, Jimin-ah,” Hoseok coos. “Anything for you. You’ve earned it.”
He settles back into the couch while Yoongi texts Namjoon the good news. Seokjin gets a text as well, though Yoongi isn’t sure if the witch actually knows how to unlock his phone.
He and Hoseok switch places as soon as Yoongi half-heartedly finishes a paper due the next day. Hoseok sets up at the table with his massive bag of mail and Yoongi buries himself under blankets and knocks out. Jimin entertains himself by writing out messages on Yoongi’s arm for Hoseok to read and snicker silently at—and, when Namjoon gets back (looking immensely stressed-out and sleep-deprived) for Namjoon to laugh at too.
“I still can’t believe you’re in a tattoo,” Namjoon tells Yoongi’s arm. The current message erases and a new one is written out: yeah, it took some time to get used to, since I’m not in a body anymore.
“Is Yoongi nice to you?” Namjoon asks, eyeing his best friend. “I know he can get a little grumpy.”
“A little?” Hoseok questions, tossing a envelope back into his bag. “Joon-ah, I’ve never seen a day where Yoongi isn’t grumpy for at least a little part of it.”
I mostly think it’s a show, Jimin writes. A defense mechanism. But I know he cares a lot about me.
“That’s good,” Namjoon says. “Especially since he’s the only one that can hear you.”
I didn’t expect him to like me so much. I mean, I tore apart his whole world and invaded his personal space.
“It’s good for him,” Namjoon insists wisely. “Builds character. I think he needed someone to do that. I didn’t expect it, Jimin-ah, but you’re helping Yoongi come back into himself”
He’s doing a lot for me, too, Jimin writes out, and it’s slow, unsure. Hesitant, almost. Namjoon could even call it shy.
Namjoon spins around and makes eye contact with Hoseok, jerking his head towards Yoongi, and then the tattoo on his friend’s forearm.
“Yeah, I know,” Hoseok says, getting the unspoken message. “It’s cute, right?”
“Totally unexpected,” Namjoon adds. “And a little weird. But sweet.”
“Definitely sweet,” Hoseok agrees. “It’s also very interesting.”
Namjoon hums, watching Yoongi mutter something under his breath, pulling his right arm closer to his chest. “Interesting indeed.”