The first flight is the longest, four and a half hours to let the next week and a half sink in. Namjoon has been out of country before, family trips where his mom held all their passports and handed out colouring books and snacks on the plane to keep him and his sister entertained.
It’s Hoseok’s first time flying though, and it shows. The weeks leading up to the trip he was texting Namjoon at all hours with questions about what’s going to happen - constantly worrying if he has everything he needs.
Namjoon is often called smart, but it’s rare that he’s seen as street smart. So having the ability to teach Hoseok how things go makes him feel more than a little competent. (And if he has to text his mom about some of the questions Hoseok sends his way - no one needs to know.)
He shows Hoseok how to fold his ticket over the page adjacent to his passport photo so he can show both at the same time going through TSA and at their gate, feeling like a master passing on his trade as they’re herded like cattle through lines and checks. Hoseok makes fun of him for carrying his passport in his mouth but Namjoon knows better than to let it out of his sight considering his track record with important documents.
By the time they’re settled on the plane, Namjoon feels like he can breathe again. Airports are always hectic and stressful, but he’s where he needs to be for the next four and half hours, he can worry about their customs forms and connecting flights later.
Hoseok, on the other hand, seems to be even more stressed.
“Why’re you white knuckling our communal armrest?” Namjoon asks, sliding his backpack under the seat in front of him and unhooking his neck pillow from the top strap.
“I’m not entirely sure I trust this plane.”
“Hmm.” Namjoon really should’ve anticipated this. Hoseok kind of has a fear of heights. And various animals. And the unknown. This might be a long flight for him. “If it’s any consolation, I don’t think Snakes on a Plane was a very accurate representation of how that whole scenario would go down.
Hoseok turns to glare at him, hands somehow clenching tighter onto the arm rests. “Really? That’s your comforting words? I can’t even imagine your bedside manner. I’m glad you didn’t stick with medical school.”
Namjoon does feel a little bad, not enough to stop himself from laughing at Hoseok’s obvious offence - but still. “Do you want me to take the window seat so you don’t have to see it?”
Hoseok shakes his head, “I think it’ll be worse if I can’t see what’s coming. Plus, if I freak out I’d rather it was just on your shoulder. Don’t really feel like dragging whoever ends up with the aisle seat into it.”
Namjoon nods and gets back to settling in, digging for the seatbelt under his butt and exploring entertainment options on the small touchscreen in front of him. Hoseok takes a few deep breaths, then Namjoon feels the tell-tale weight of a Hoseok chin on his shoulder.
“We can watch movies?”
The flight goes well. Hoseok ends up doing better than Namjoon, who always gets a little nauseous on flights. Something about the combination of stale recycled air and high speed turbulence never sits well with his stomach.
Hoseok is peeking out his window and taking shots of clouds, grinning like this is the best thing he’s ever seen.
Namjoon gets through half a movie before he has to turn it off and focus on his breathing, nursing a ginger ale and listening to Hoseok talk about their upcoming trip - trying his best not to let his queasiness bring down Hoseok’s good mood.
“Just think - we won’t have to do anything. I mean, we can. But we’ve got a room, all our food is included, and the resort has all sorts of activities we just need to show up at the main building to attend. I don’t think I’ve ever had to put forth so little effort to survive.”
“I’m gonna eat everything.” Namjoon says dreamily, closing his eyes to picture a magnificent buffet in his mind.
He hears Hoseok snort, “you’re one of the pickiest eaters I know. You’re gonna eat maybe one third of what’s there and then complain you don’t like half of it.”
Namjoon frowns, “don’t tell me how to live my life. I’m on vacation.”
“Yeah,” Hoseok starts - and Namjoon can already tell he’s about to be somehow reprimanded, “that I planned, thank you very much. If it wasn’t for me we’d be stuck somewhere more expensive with less stuff included. You’re welcome.”
Namjoon can’t argue that. The two of them spent a few weeks getting a feel for the sort of resorts that were available. They’d been looking in a few different spots, trying to find the cheapest times and destinations where they could get the most for their money.
Originally, Hoseok and Namjoon had planned to go on a trip together after college - but a few weeks before they had decided to buy plane tickets, Hoseok got a job offer for right after graduation.
Namjoon didn’t want to go alone, and it didn’t feel quite right to go with anyone else. The two of them had only met halfway through their second year, but Namjoon considered him a close enough friend to plan an out of country vacation with.
So, the post grad adventure never happened. Namjoon was a little bummed at first, but it turned out alright. That money he’d been saving for the trip came in handy when it took a little longer to find a job after grad than he’d been anticipating but still needed to pay rent and eat
Back then the plan had been to fly to Vietnam and travel the countryside by motorbike like the hipster wannabes they were. Now that they have jobs and suffer under the heaving weight of society like real adults they’re happy to find an all inclusive resort and sip drinks on the beach.
Hoseok had tracked down a resort that was cheaper than most of what they’d found and everything was included. He’d ended up searching English sites, letting Naver do the translating. He sent a few pictures of the resort to Namjoon along with the price and they’d settled on it that day, it was just too good to pass up.
So Namjoon really does owe it to Hoseok for managing to track this down, but there’s no way he’s gonna admit it.
“I would’ve found something eventually.”
“You would’ve stayed home and complained that we still hadn’t gotten our vacation.”
Sometimes Namjoon forgets how well Hoseok knows him. “Whatever. We’re halfway there now. What’s the first thing you’re gonna do when we check in?”
“I call the tub,” Hoseok responds immediately, and Namjoon curses under his breath. It was hard to put together the exact set up of their room from all the pictures Hoseok had found, but they know they’re gonna have an awesome tub and that alone is almost enough to justify the trip to Namjoon.
“We gotta take shifts to make it fair.”
“There’s gonna be a whole ocean and you wanna fight me for the tub?”
Getting to the island is less hectic than Namjoon had feared, but it’s still a little overwhelming. They transfer in Manila and take an hour long flight to Caticlan after going through customs. From Caticlan they have to go through more customs before boarding a small boat that takes them to Boracay. Hoseok fairs a little worse there, the smell of diesel and turbulent waters have him groaning in distress. Namjoon pats his thigh comfortingly in support when they’re almost there.
The island is beautiful. It’s obvious as soon as they get there how commercialized everything has been made for tourists, Koreans and white people as far as the eye can see. They take a tuk-tuk to their resort, sweaty bodies crammed into the small cabin and luggage stowed under their feet and cradled in their arms. They take in the scenery as they go, everything lowly lit in the early evening.
They pass a Starbucks and a McDonalds, and Hoseok laughs to himself, leaning over to whisper into Namjoon’s ear. “Taehyung’s disappointed in us. ‘ Hyung, you’re going to Boracay? But that’s so… touristy. You should’ve gone to Siargao. Or at the very least, Palawan .’”
Namjoon rolls his eyes, he can picture the disgusted look on Taehyung’s face when Hoseok told him they were just going to laze about in a resort on their vacation. “Well, Taehyung’s kind of pretentious so that’s not really surprising.”
Hoseok laughs at this, “I bet if I send him a picture of us sitting next to the pool instead of the ocean he’ll cry.”
They settle back into relative silence, tapping each other on the thigh and pointing out various stores and restaurants they pass by.
When they finally make it, Namjoon pulls out some pesos to pay for the ride before Hoseok can embarrass them both by digging into his horrendous money belt to look for change.
“I’m 80% sure the only reason you’re wearing that is because you know I’d rather buy everything on this trip than be seen with someone wearing a money belt.”
Hoseok shoots him a self-satisfied grin, “I take the safety of my money very seriously, Joon. It’s not my fault your pride is worth more than your money.”
Namjoon sticks his tongue out at Hoseok, and promptly decides to blame his childish response on jetlag. The one hour time difference must really be hitting him. Hoseok lets out a snort, but follows after Namjoon when he rolls his luggage across the lobby of their resort.
The lady checking them in speaks Korean, but it’s obvious she’s struggling so Namjoon switches to English to save both of them the trouble - which has her looking relieved, even if Hoseok pouts at understanding less of the information.
They get all their documents and payments sorted, and she gives them a packet of information. It’s got different tours for the area, shuttle information, and a pamphlet outlining different included activities available during their stay. That one is in a few different languages so Namjoon hands it off to Hoseok so he can start looking for things for them to do. They’re given fancy glasses of iced tea to sip on while the lady puts in some final information and gets their keys.
Their room has a name, and Namjoon’s sure he’s heard the term before but he can’t quite place it. He figures it’s not a big deal, but he’s definitely curious. The lady refers to it a few times, and Namjoon feels the meaning at the tip of his tongue, but can’t seem to put it together for the life of him. Hoseok’s brows are furrowed as he looks through the pamphlet.
“What, bad translation?” Namjoon asks, and Hoseok shake his head.
“No, it’s not that… it’s just…”
“Sir? I have your keys here, the wifi code is right here. You’re going to walk out through that door and wait for the shuttle. Your suite is in Mahal Village, make sure to tell the driver that and they will take you to the entrance. Please enjoy your stay, and once again congratulations!”
“Why was she saying ‘congratulations’?” They’re in the back of a shuttle van, finally on their way to their room.
“I’m not sure,” Namjoon says honestly, he’s pretty worn out from all the travelling and keeping up with translating everything didn’t really help. “She said it when she found our reservation as well. Maybe for finding such a good deal? Or for being on vacation? I have no idea.”
Hoseok seems to be satisfied with this answer, reaching into his pocket to pull out the folded up pamphlet he’d been studying earlier. “These activities are kind of… strange.”
“How so?” Namjoon asks, gripping tighter to his bag as they round a corner with a little too much momentum for his liking.
“They’re all kind of… romantic?” Hoseok explains, looking over the activities.
“Makes sense,” Namjoon says, “we’re at a resort on an island. Pretty romantic.”
“I know,” Hoseok counters, “but it’s all like… just for couples. Nothing for families or friends.”
That is a little strange. “Can I see?” Namjoon reaches for the pamphlet, but then they’re pulling to a stop and the driver says the name of their area, so they focus on getting out of the van instead, thanking the driver and checking their key to see what their room number is.
Mahal Village is full of detached round cottages, and all of them look way out of their price range. There’s a long pool separating the two rows of rooms, but even on each side the rooms are offset to give each a little more privacy. At the end of the rows is the ocean. It looks like something out of a dream. If Namjoon wasn’t sweating profusely just from walking through the humid night air to get to their room he might’ve had to pinch himself to believe that it’s real.
“Shit. You owe me so much more than I thought.” Hoseok’s voice is almost reverent as they get to their cottage, right next to the ocean where they can hear more than see the waves hitting the shore.
Namjoon nods, “yeah, okay. You deserve the tub.”
Hoseok snorts, and grabs the key out of Namjoon’s hand, unlocking the door and pushing it open so they can step into the dark room. He reaches blindly along the wall for the light switch while Namjoon closes the door behind them. He’s facing the door when Hoseok finds the light, and hears him make a slightly distressed noise. Namjoon quickly turns to see what the matter is, and his jaw drops.
The room has an open layout, curtained windows covering most of the round walls. There’s a giant tub in the middle of the room, which Namjoon definitely wasn’t expecting. That’s not where Hoseok is looking though. Across the room from the tub is a king sized bed, complete with a beautiful canopy. The bed side tables have fake tea light candles to set some sort of mood and the white linen of the bed is covered in both rose petals and what appears to be condoms.
Suddenly, something clicks in Namjoon’s mind. The word the woman kept repeating - honeymoon. Hoseok had booked the both of them a honeymoon package.