“Yeah, I’m alright.” Jimin spoke into his phone as he simultaneously waved to his boss as he left the adorable florist/gardening store and headed towards his car. He frowned as he realised he must have forgotten to lock his car this morning. “No, mom, you don’t have to send any money. Tell Jihyun I miss him too. I love you… talk to you soon.”
He ended the call as he started his engine, homesickness pooling in his stomach. He’d love to be back in Busan but he wanted to settle down into Seoul as this was where he planned on going to university… eventually.
Jimin bit his lip as he left the small carpark. He didn’t really know what he wanted to study and pursue, so he had been hoping in the few years break he had from studying would help him gain some perspective but most days he just felt even more confused.
Still, he wouldn’t say he was unhappy, maybe a bit hopeful. His life was simple but he didn’t mind it, things would be more fun once Jihyun graduated high school and came to Seoul to live with him.
Things always worked out in the end.
He drove down the busy, noisy Seoul streets, listening to some pop band on the radio and occasionally singing along with a few lyrics.
He was about halfway back to his apartment when he checked his rear view mirror and noticed a police car behind him, lights flashing.
“Oh, great…” Jimin sighed, double checking that he wasn’t speeding and slowly pulling over. He readied his license, a little bit apprehensive as he always got in front of authority and people of power.
Two officers stepped out, both a bit older than middle-aged. Jimin rolled down his window, giving what he hoped was a friendly smile.
“Um, hi.” He said awkwardly.
“I’m officer Ji, this is Kang. Would you mind if we checked your vehicle?” One of them asked gruffly, not exactly friendly.
Was this really a question? “Uh… I guess not…” Jimin stared at them, confused. He had thought they would want him to take a breath test or something, not this.
“Can I see your license?” Officer Kang asked and Jimin handed it to him quickly, getting a bad sense of trepidation.
Something was definitely wrong.
Officer Ji gave a low whistle, closing the boot of Jimin’s car and walking back up to the driver’s seat with something in his hand.
What was he holding? Jimin racked his mind, trying to think of something suspicious he could possibly be keeping in his car and turning up blank.
“Do you want to explain this?”
Jimin blinked up at the two police officers, face pale and mouth dry. His hands were shaking and the rumbling of his car engine became white noise as his world spun off its axis.
“What?” He choked out because he was sure he hadn’t heard correctly. He couldn’t have. It wasn’t possible.
“This is going to be a huge fine, kid. You’re going to get charged with possession and perhaps even intent to distribute.” The older officer said roughly, there seemed to be satisfaction in his voice however.
“T-That’s not mine!” Jimin exclaimed as he eyed the white powder in the plastic bag in the officer’s hand, positively freaking out now. “I-I swear! I’ve never seen that before in my life! Please, I don’t know where it’s from – ”
“Yeah, yeah.” The officer rolled his eyes.
Jimin was close to bursting into tears. Now, he wondered if it had been random at all. Jimin’s never had anything to do with illicit drugs his whole life, and he certainly had no idea how that stuff got in his car, in fact he’s sure that was not in his car but –
“Ji, look, his address.” Officer Kang said casually, too casually, as he glanced over Jimin’s license.
Jimin swallowed heavily, suspicious.
The first officer looked at the card and then leered down at Jimin, a glint of victory and determination. “Do you know Park Chanyeol?”
Jimin’s mind was a complete haze – trying to figure out what was going on.
He had been set up.
And now they wanted something from him.
Jimin was from a middle class family – he couldn’t fight something like this – besides he needed to desperately save up money for university next year because his family took a bad economical hit and –
“Hey, kid. Answer!” Officer Ji snapped and Jimin flinched back, hands clammy on the steering wheel. A few cars drove past from where they were parked on the side of the street.
“Y-Yes, I mean, he’s my neighbour so we’ve spoken a little…” Jimin whispered, wondering what on earth Park Chanyeol had to do with anything.
The second officer smirked, not looking surprised at all. “How about we cut you a deal to keep this off your record and forget the fine. Hm?”
“A deal?” Jimin gulped as panic crept up his chest. “What kind of deal?”
This was how Jimin found himself sitting nervously on a cushion, hands folded onto the shallow table, in his neighbour’s apartment a few weeks later after many hours put into becoming friendly and having his neighbour trust him. It was pure deceit. The deal was that Jimin had to become the police’s informant and infiltrate into Chanyeol’s business arrangements just so he could learn the names of other influential people involved.
When Jimin first came to Seoul he did think it was strange that Chanyeol lived in a rather bleak apartment complex like him when he wore Armani suits and drove a Mercedes. Still, it wasn’t Jimin’s place to judge as he had been far too busy thinking about working to have enough money for university the following year to bother with other people’s lives.
Now it did sort of make sense. According to the officers Ji and Kang, Chanyeol was a businessman with a few illegal works on the side. It was a network, they described, involving many of the cities powerful corporates but they were protected by their wealth and status. He got briefed on many of the key players they knew about, he got warned about what to say and not to say.
They needed to take the organisation down in sections, so conveniently finding the perfect CI.
Jimin was terrified and furious. And helpless. They were dirty, corrupt cops, taking advantage of a struggling twenty-year old and using him for their own purposes. Compared to Chanyeol who seemed genuinely kind and had a few times even offered to help Jimin out financially, they appeared as the real criminals.
But who was going to believe Jimin over two experienced and acclaimed police officers?
If he tried to fight this he could end up with all sorts of allegations and charges against him. No university would accept him. They held the power to ruin his future.
Jimin bit his lip as his throat tightened.
With so much pressure from the police officers, he’d eventually found the courage to ask Chanyeol for help – but specifically asking for a job – so that he could get this informant task over and done with. The police said he’d get protection afterwards. Jimin had to believe things would work out okay.
“We need a new location to give our products out.” Chanyeol spoke as he sat down beside Jimin, checking his phone as he talked. “You work at that gardening florist kind of place right? I think it’ll be a good front.”
Jimin gulped but nodded. He thought of the lovely couple who had hired him. What if they got into trouble? He adored them. He didn’t want them to get caught up in all this. They trusted him a lot, often he was the only one working there during quiet hours as they had a few other florist shops. Jimin hated having to do this. He hated those vile cops who acted as if they had found Jimin by sheer dumb luck. They even had the nerve to make jabs about Jimin’s ‘drug-dealing’ ways for entertainment. What a fucking joke.
“Are you sure you want to do this?” Chanyeol asked. “You can’t as easily back out. You’ll need to be completely silent about the whole operation... or else.”
Jimin shivered, sweating. Oh God. Could he do this? What if they found out he was speaking to the police? Fuck, what if they went after his family?
There was a sharp knock and then three other men entered the small, surprisingly bare and undecorated apartment. Jimin’s stomach twisted and he felt like he could throw up the contents of his minimal lunch.
The first man who walked in had cold, piercing eyes and Jimin felt like they would see right through him and his frankly poor façade.
Min Yoongi. He was amongst the most powerful men from Daegu, not too involved with Seoul business exclusively.
The second man was tall, height matched for Chanyeol, brown hair styled and oozed confidence and power.
Kim Namjoon, Jimin remembered. He was very focussed and intelligent. Jimin had been warned to be careful with his words if he had to speak with him. Stick as close to the truth as possible.
The last man to enter was dressed lavishly in expensive designer clothes and was the only one with a hint of a smile, long hair falling across playful eyes and a hoop piercing in his lip. Jimin didn’t recognise him and that made him more uneasy.
“Yoongi, Namjoon, Taehyung.” Chanyeol smiled and motioned for them to sit down. “This is Jimin.”
Jimin unconsciously shifted back as they sat down in front of him, the table acting as a small barrier between them. Yoongi and Namjoon gave him a slow once-over before turning back to Chanyeol, whilst Taehyung eyed him with a growing smirk. Jimin’s blood ran colder the longer he stared him down.
“I told you about Jimin over the phone. His workplace wouldn’t attract much attention. It’s in a good location.” Chanyeol explained but Jimin could barely hear what he was saying. It was sinking in now that he was going to become part of a crime syndicate.
His heart was squeezing inside his chest.
“He doesn’t look cut out for it.” Yoongi said flatly and Jimin snapped his head up, making eye contact and instantly dropping it. Yoongi snorted, unimpressed.
“I-I can do this.” Jimin willed himself to say, hoping he would miss the tremble.
Yoongi cocked an eyebrow and Namjoon didn’t look convinced.
“I’ll have him ready by the next shipment.” Chanyeol assured.
Jimin tried to keep his chin high. He hoped he could look a little like he believed in what he was saying.
“We have a more pressing matter to discuss.” Namjoon cleared his throat and Chanyeol tensed. “The Jeons are not happy with us, or more specifically, your side of the business.”
Chanyeol sighed and Jimin froze.
The Jeons? Weren’t they Seoul’s notorious mafia family?
Jimin put his hands on his lap and gripped his knees, needing something to ground him. What was he getting himself into? Did Ji and Kang know about this? Those assholes probably did.
Chanyeol furrowed his eyebrows, looking frustrated. “A lot of our shipments were intercepted, and we had a few problems with some of our distributors. I assure you that’s been taken of.”
Taken care of?
Jimin gave a sharp exhale that no one missed.
“He’s shaking like a leaf.” Taehyung smirked, voice deep and teasing. “Where did you find this pretty boy, Chanyeol??”
Jimin bit his lip and looked down. He was ruining everything, he needed to get his fucking act together before they decided he wasn’t worth it. They couldn’t just let him walk out without some sort of compensation – he knew information about their organisation.
“He lives in this apartment complex.” Chanyeol answered, voice neutral.
“Oh, so you’re fucking him?” Taehyung grinned and Jimin squeaked, horrified.
“No, I’m not.” Chanyeol said with an eye roll, not looking all that bothered or surprised by Taehyung’s comments.
Taehyung laughed. Yoongi looked bored and Namjoon wanted to get back to the discussion.
“We’ll address that later. For now, the Jeons are requesting a payment.” Namjoon said, sliding across a sheet of paper and suddenly this felt too legitimate and Jimin almost scoffed.
Chanyeol looked it over before giving Namjoon a dark glare. “You know I can’t pay this much. At least not right now.”
“They’re requesting it be wired by tomorrow.”
“I’m sure I don’t have to remind you of the consequences.” Namjoon chided though not exactly unkindly.
Chanyeol clasped his hands together and Jimin could tell he was stressed. “I… let me speak to the Jeons, I’ll explain what happened –”
“There’s no need.” Taehyung suddenly interrupted and there was a very satisfied smirk on his face now, eyes flashing with mirth that made Jimin’s insides twist.
Namjoon bristled and looked irked. “I handle the Jeons' requests, not you.”
“Hyung, just hear me out.” Taehyung said with fake exasperation. “Baby Jeon is the one who handles this side of the operations for the family. I’m sure he’d accept regular down payments, he just needs some convincing with a token of apology.”
Namjoon frowned. “What?”
Yoongi simply chuckled. “He’d fuck you up if he heard you called him Baby Jeon.”
Taehyung gave a low whistle. “I honestly wouldn’t mind if he bent me over and had his way with me, but I’m not really his type.” Taehyung winked at Jimin, tongue tracing his bottom lip and Jimin was sure he was rapidly turning red. “He likes the sweet, innocent, pretty ones.”
Chanyeol turned to Jimin, mind in deep thought. “Would he agree?”
Taehyung grinned. “Of course. I’ll personally take Jimin to him. He won’t be able to resist – he’ll get all his money eventually, and he gets this sweet little thing with it.”
Jimin curled back. “P-Please, no.” He looked desperately at Chanyeol. “You can’t.”
They were mafia.
Chanyeol gave him an apologetic look. “I’m sorry. This is business.”
“But, w-what –” Jimin stood up hastily, chest heaving and tears pricking his eyes.
“Oh, darling, calm down.” Taehyung began but Jimin’s head was swirling with fear and his breaths were coming out short and sharp. He scrambled to his feet before any of them could protest, knees weak. He needed to get out of here. He didn’t want to get sold and used as a bargaining chip.
Jimin turned and rushed out of the room, wrenching the door open frantically and then –
And then caught around the waist by another man who had been standing outside the apartment door.
“No! Let me go! Get the fuck off – ”
“Whoa, easy.” The new man said as Jimin scrambled in his hold, the next second clamping a hand down over his mouth. “Taehyung?” He called back into the apartment and Jimin was screaming muffled pleas.
“Thank you, baby.” Taehyung said, voice dripping honey at Jimin’s captor. “Well, let’s go, shall we? I think we’re done here.”
Namjoon and Yoongi nodded.
There were tears streaming down Jimin’s cheeks, and Chanyeol’s relieved face was the last thing he saw before a pain shot up behind his head and he blacked out.
When Jimin woke up he was in the backseat of a car. He wasn’t bound or gagged, and besides the tender ache at the back of his head, he felt unhurt.
His mouth was dry and throat raspy.
“You woke up just in time.”
Jimin straightened up quickly, head and vision still fuzzy, but made out the face of the man who had stopped him from escaping the apartment. He gave Jimin an inappropriately bright smile – as if he hadn’t just kidnapped Jimin for the most powerful family in Seoul. Taehyung was beside this man but he was busy on his phone, rapidly texting.
The adrenaline kicked in belatedly. Jimin flinched back, whipping his head around at the buildings. This was Gangnam.
“Don’t do anything stupid, Jimin.” Taehyung said with his saccharine sweet tone, not glancing up from his screen. “We wouldn’t want anything to happen to little Jihyun, would we?”
Jimin froze, a chill running across his body, down his veins to the tips of his fingers..
They know about Jihyun? That means they know about my parents and my home in Busan and possibly my whole life.
“Oh God.” Jimin reached for the door handle but it had been locked. He swivelled in his seat to look for anything he could use as a weapon, but the only thing he found was a gun being pointed at him by a rather amused Taehyung.
“Stop that. You’re annoying me.” Taehyung sighed. “Besides, nothing bad will happen if you keep your mouth shut and do what we say.”
Jimin glared at him, fear making way for anger. “The police will find out about this.” Officer Ji and Kang would figure it out eventually, after all, he was supposed to report back to them every three days. When they didn’t hear from him they’d know something had gone wrong. It would be okay.
“Of course they will.” Taehyung scoffed sarcastically, disbelief written all over his face, “and I guarantee, they won’t be able to do anything about it.”
They arrived at some lavish building – Jimin didn’t have time to take much in as he was escorted to an elevator, wedged beside the other man with Taehyung. Taehyung had his arm around the other man’s waist, every so often whispering in his ear.
Jimin felt uncomfortable with them, like he was intruding on some intimate moment. His gaze darted to them, occupied with each other, and wondered if he’d have enough time to run away when the elevator stopped.
If he took them by surprise then maybe.
But what about Jihyun and his family in Busan? Would they go after them as punishment? Jimin curled his hands into fists as he remembered the gun sticking out of Taehyung’s jacket. Perhaps this ‘baby Jeon’ would have no interest in him and let him be.
Don’t be stupid. You know too much.
Jimin could feel the tears of frustration rising and a choke trapped in his throat.
How did his life get this screwed up? He was just an average person trying to get enough money for university.
The elevator stopped and Jimin’s body seized, all muscles rigid and unable to move. He was about to meet one of Seoul’s mafia leaders. He could kill him. The doors opened up to a spacious room with glass walls and many doors that looked like it opened into officers or conference rooms. There were people, normal looking non-mafia people, dressed in nice suits and outfits, but hardly sparing them a glance.
Many are paid very well, particularly to keep their mouth shut, Officer Kang had told Jimin. In a city where money was everything, this was a very easily accepted deal.
“Come on.” Taehyung said roughly and gave Jimin a nudge forward.
Jimin wanted to sob and beg the others here for help.
Taehyung rolled his eyes and yanked Jimin by the sleeve of his shirt. “Don’t cry. Don’t you want to look nice for Jungkook?”
“Fuck you.” Jimin spat and wrestled out of his grip taking a few hasty steps back.
Taehyung’s hand hovered over his gun before it was clear Jimin wasn’t about to run off. “So you do have some fight after all.”
Jimin pressed his lips together, holding back everything he really wanted to say to them in fear he’d get beaten or killed, or his completely unknowing family. Instead, hot tears slipped down his cheeks and that only angered himself more. Why did he have to appear weak in front of people like them?
“I don’t have time for this.” Taehyung tilted his head to walk further into the room, all traces of playfulness gone. “Go. Or I’ll break every single one of your fingers.”
Jimin flinched, hands now curled into his chest.
Jimin made himself walk, eyes rimmed red and legs shaking with each step.
They walked down a brightly lit corridor until the noise slowly died down and the muffled sounds of their footsteps against nicely vacuumed carpet was the only thing that could be heard.
“Here. To the left.” Taehyung suddenly snapped and yanked Jimin’s arm to stop him, already knocking on the door with the other.
“Please, let me go. I won’t tell anyone, I swear –”
Taehyung threw his head back and laughed. “Sure, sweetheart.” He kept a firm grip on Jimin’s upper arm as he opened the door, revealing a spacious office with floor to ceiling windows and sleek black furniture. Standing in the corner at the window, phone to his ear, was a tall, young man, dark hair falling into cunning, brown eyes. His suit was stretched over a clearly fit, well trained body. He had broad shoulders and toned quadriceps and even in Jimin’s fear-stricken state he registered he was rather handsome.
“Yes, uncle.” The man rolled his eyes as his stare moved across from Taehyung to Jimin, trailing down the length of his body. Jimin could feel the hairs at the back of his neck stick up. “Of course.” With that, he hung up and walked to his desk, placing the device on the surface and cocking an eyebrow at Taehyung. “Well?”
“It’s nice to see you too.” Taehyung grinned.
This man – Jungkook, Jimin assumed – barely reacted to that, instead locking eyes with Jimin, stare hot and intense. Jimin could feel his stomach in his mouth again.
“Might I remind you, again, that we do not partake in human trafficking.” Jungkook said flatly.
The other man beside Taehyung giggled.
Taehyung didn’t look deterred. “Chanyeol sends his apologies.”
“Yes. Namjoon told me about that. Quite frankly, he’s the only one who actually does what he’s asked.” Jungkook muttered.
“Don’t look so disappointed. I brought you a present.” Taehyung said it so casually, clearly enjoying himself, that Jimin wanted to punch him if it wasn’t for the words absolutely revolting him. He was going to be turned into their personal whore. He was going to get abused and raped. Jimin visibly shuddered.
“Oh? You’re giving up Hoseok?” Jungkook smirked, feigning nonchalance and yet knowing he had pushed a button.
Taehyung shoved Jimin forward, hard. Jimin fell onto his knees, catching himself with his palms. He was too afraid to get back up. He didn’t want to see their faces.
“If you even think about Hoseok in that way I’ll castrate you.” Taehyung said lowly as he reached for the other person and nuzzled into his neck. Hoseok smiled. “I don’t share.”
Jimin remained staring at the ground, vision becoming blurry from tears welling up. He really didn’t want this. He should have just paid the fine, or tried to prove his innocence for the drugs in his car which he knew had been planted there.
He hadn’t done anything wrong.
“I trust Chanyeol ran a background check on him?”
“Yeah. Twenty years old. From Busan, came to Seoul earlier this year. He graduated third in his cohort, top of the performing arts and sciences. He works at a florist store, gets his coffee from Starbucks every morning, goes to the gym around the corner from the apartment. I’ll send you the rest of the information. Have fun, he’s very cute.”
Fucking hell. Jimin shivered. Just how much did they know? What if they found out he was a police informant? He’d be dead for sure.
“Alright. Leave.” Jungkook said and Jimin could hear the shuffling of footsteps, and a door close. A few seconds later, black expensive shoes came into Jimin’s peripheral view.
Jungkook crouched down and touched his chin.
Jimin flinched but Jungkook gripped him with his thumb and forefinger. Their gazes met.
“What’s your name, petal?” Jungkook asked, voice smooth and stare unforgiving as it scoured Jimin’s face.
Jimin swallowed hard. He didn’t want to say anything, but Jungkook oozed power and control and Jimin was just a nobody in this room, in this city.
“Don’t make me hurt a lovely thing like you.” Jungkook whispered, but there was a threat hanging in his words.
Jimin dropped his gaze, feeling hot all of a sudden instead of cold and clammy like he had a minute ago. “J-Jimin.”
“Jimin…” Jungkook said slowly as he drew back his hand and stood up, walking to his desk. “I apologize for Taehyung’s recklessness. I know of the arrangement he and Chanyeol made. I am not going to make you my personal fucktoy, unless that’s what you want.”
Jimin winced at the crass term, face heating up, refusing to meet Jungkook’s eyes. Had he heard correctly?
“I have no use for you, really. You may go.” Jungkook leaned against his desk as Jimin sat back onto his heels, eyes wide.
“B-But… I don’t understand…” Jimin stuttered, waiting for the other shoe to drop. Was Jungkook letting him go that easily? “Y-You’re mafia.”
Jungkook smirked darkly. The Jeons were proud of their family name, the fear they plunged into people, the very weight of supremacy their name carried. “I am.”
“Aren’t you afraid I could go to the police?” Jimin choked out.
“You know nothing that the police don’t already know.” Jungkook replied easily as he took a few steps closer. “You’re an open book. I would never put my business at risk by trusting you. I don’t know what Chanyeol was thinking.” Jungkook chuckled and reached for Jimin’s cheek.
Jimin darted back but the contact occurred anyway, Jungkook’s lips curled. Jimin bristled but remained still, not wanting to aggravate a man who could hunt his family and loved ones down like prey. Who could make him disappear.
“You seem reluctant to leave.” Jungkook snickered and his thumb stroked across Jimin’s lips which only sealed together tightly in resistance. “Would you like to serve me in another way, petal? You’re gorgeous on your knees.”
Jimin slapped Jungkook’s hand away before he could stop himself, stumbling to his feet as Jungkook watched him. He didn’t seem angry, only entertained.
“You’re disgusting!” Jimin snapped. “You’re immoral and ruthless and – and –” There’s no point, Jimin thought as Jungkook’s expression remained impassive at his comments. I should just leave. Office Ji and Officer Kang will understand – I never agreed to getting involved with the mafia. I’ve learnt the names of who Chanyeol works with, this is enough.
Jimin took a sharp breath in before he ran out of the office. No one stopped him this time.
It wasn’t enough.
Officer Ji sighed as Jimin sat in the backseat of an old, silver sedan, a lukewarm coffee in his hands.
“I did what you asked.” Jimin murmured. “Jungkook let me go. I-I can’t do anything further. I remember the names but –”
“We already know those people, we need actual proof. If you became a distributor we could try link the drugs back to the Jeons and then we’d have something to go on but…” Officer Ji ran a hand through his slightly greying hair. “You haven’t brought us anything valuable.”
“I could have been fucking killed!” Jimin snapped angrily. He wasn’t a trained cop for going undercover; he was working at a florist shop for God’s sake trying to save up money for higher education so he could do something with his life. “I did what you asked! I can’t – there’s nothing else!”
“Okay, kid, calm down.” Officer Kang said sternly. “We get it.”
Jimin glanced down at his lap, frustration coursing through him hotly. He never wanted to see these two officers again, or Chanyeol, or Namjoon or Yoongi and certainly not Taehyung and Jungkook.
“Look… try and get back onto Chanyeol’s good side. Be his friend, he might start to trust you and say things – you’ve already met Namjoon and all so he may loosen up around you. Anything he says, whether you think it’s relevant or not, tell us.” Officer Ji rattled.
How long was this going to go on?
“What, like he likes his coffee fucking black with two sugars?” Jimin snipped as he opened the door and stepped out, knocking his shoulder as he hastily got out of the vehicle.
“Check in every three days from the phone we gave you.” Officer Kang reminded.
Jimin scowled and walked away, stomach swirling unpleasantly. None of this was fair, or just.
But living was a game all about power, and Jimin held none.
It wasn’t unusual for weeks to go by without seeing Chanyeol. Often, he didn’t even live in the apartment and Jimin could guess it was really only for use as a meeting location.
Perhaps he kept bodies there. Jimin didn’t want to find out.
For a while life went back to normal, despite constant worry and anxiety. He became a little obsessed with locking his doors and keeping his curtains drawn and not leaving his apartment unless it was necessary. His family did wonder why he called back so often out of the blue. Jimin would never forgive himself if anything happened to them.
It was a Tuesday night, a month had passed. Jimin had stopped looking over his shoulder as often, stopped getting up in the middle of the night, stopped sleeping with all the lights on. The two officers said he recovered fast, but Jimin only wanted to forget the whole event.
That Tuesday night he had two bags of groceries hanging off one arm, whilst the other searched for his keys in his pocket. It was quite late, and Jimin was exhausted and ready to just fall into bed. As he unlocked his door he heard footsteps behind him.
His gut twisted.
Maybe Chanyeol was back.
Jimin went to turn around but was shoved forward against his still closed door, and something cold pressed into his lower back. His chin hit the surface roughly and the pain radiated down his jaw.
“Stay quiet. Open the door.”
Jimin’s limbs felt icy and his breath stopped. He recognised that voice – it plagued his thoughts at random times of the day, consumed his nights. That was Jungkook.
Did he know Jimin was an informant?
“P-Please don’t hurt me, I haven’t told anyone –”
“Shut up. Open the fucking door.” Jungkook growled and his weight rendered Jimin unable to move back. The gun pressed against him harder.
Jimin reached for the doorknob and opened it slowly. The moment there was enough space he was being roughly jostled inside and then Jungkook slammed the door shut, locking it.
A mafia leader was in his apartment.
Jimin fell back onto his ass, groceries tumbling out of plastic bags. He scrambled back, reaching for his phone, but Jungkook caught his ankle and slammed Jimin back into the carpet before his Timberland came crushing down on Jimin’s wrist. His head throbbed from when it had smacked the floor. The phone fell from his grip weakly.
Jungkook glared at him as he picked up the phone and deftly removed the battery and sim. “Tsk. I won’t hurt you if you do what I say.”
Jimin felt so vulnerable like this – on his back with Jungkook looming over him, eyes dark. He was wearing black jeans with a white t-shirt, a brown jacket over the top. There was red pooling at his waist. He had purple and blue discolorations decorating the visible parts of his arms and one nasty looking bruise on his jaw.
They stared at each other, Jimin with fear and confusion and Jungkook wincing every few seconds.
“Where’s Chanyeol?” Jimin managed finally.
“He’s in China.” Jungkook replied indifferently as he gripped his waist and his hand came back with smears of red. “Do you have bandages?”
Why was he bleeding so much? Jimin tried to get up but the boot on Jimin’s arm stopped him. Jungkook gave him a pointed look, apathetic.
“In the cupboard over there.” Jimin nodded towards the small dining area and Jungkook finally lifted his foot.
“Bring it here.”
Jimin got up shakily, trying to slow his racing heart. He quickly found the small box of medical supplies he had – just some band aids and dressings and betadine. He figured it would have to do. What was Jungkook doing around here, all bloody and bruised?
“You should go to the hospital.” Jimin said quietly as he walked back.
Jungkook scoffed as he went to sit down on the couch. Jimin hated to think of getting blood on his cushions but his apprehension definitely effectively kept his mouth shut. He went to hand the box over but Jungkook purposely ignored it, instead taking off his jacket and lifting the hem of his stained, soaked shirt. The wound was towards the back, and would be awkward for Jungkook to clean and patch up himself. He looked at Jimin expectantly.
Of course this had to happen to me. Jimin sat down beside him, fingers trembling as he wiped the blood away with a tissue. It looked like a knife wound but it didn’t seem too deep or wide. Even with his heart slamming against his chest wall and ribs feeling too tight, Jimin’s mind unhelpfully had to register the very nicely sculpted body in front of him. What the fuck is wrong with me.
“Don’t you have a family doctor or something?” Jimin muttered as he sucked in his bottom lip, wondering what the hell to do.
“I can’t go to her. There’s people still around.” Jungkook said and his eyes darted to Jimin’s curtain drawn window.
“What? Are you having some family power struggle?” Jimin said distastefully before he could stop himself.
“Different family.” Jungkook sighed. “Can you hurry up?”
Jimin jumped at his harsh tone, remembering his task.
He should probably disinfect it first, right? Trying to remember every scrap of medical information he knew, he cleaned and bandaged the area as Jungkook remained quiet, grimacing occasionally. Jimin took a little pleasure in his discomfort.
“I think I’m done.”
Jungkook stood up instantly and went to the window, peering out. A second later he picked up his phone and dialled. Jimin sat dumbly on the couch, wondering what the heck to do with himself now.
“Hey. I’m fine.” Jungkook stepped away from the window and then strode to the door, double checking the lock. “No, I’m with someone. No. Yeah, I saw one on the street. I’ll meet back with you tomorrow.”
Jungkook hung up and glanced at Jimin. “I’m staying the night.”
“But what if they come here?” Jimin whispered. He didn’t want more mafia families knowing where he lived. He didn’t want to be associated with any of them to begin. He didn’t want to be part of anything like this in any capacity.
“They didn’t see me come here, and they don’t know about you.” Jungkook said as he calmly picked up the two grocery bags lying on the floor at the door, collecting the items that had rolled out and leaving the contents on the table.
I should call Officer Ji and Kang. He had that second phone in his bedside table drawer.
But Jimin was too shocked to respond, let alone move.
Jungkook didn’t seem to care either way. He went into the kitchen and Jimin watched helplessly as he grabbed a glass and freely looked through his pantry, settling for whisky. His gun was tucked into the waistband of his jeans, dull under the poor kitchen lights.
“Jesus, I need this.” Jungkook groaned as he poured himself a drink and drained it in one go. He closed his eyes as he lightly traced over the bandage on his waist with his fingertips. “Want one?”
Jimin shook his head, paralysed, as Jungkook made himself another glass. This time, he sipped on it as he walked around the room, scouring the apartment. Jimin had never felt so scrutinised and violated by someone simply taking in his living space.
It wasn’t until Jungkook reached for a photo frame that Jimin reacted, getting to his feet.
“D-Don’t touch that.” Jimin said loudly and found the strength to snatch the frame away. He didn’t want Jungkook to see his family. He hastily put it face down on the kitchen counter and bravely met Jungkook’s eyes.
Jungkook placed the now empty glass down beside it as if to challenge him, but then resorted to gazing over Jimin’s features, expression unreadable. His stare was as heated as Jimin remembered, following the curves and sharp lines of his body, lingering at his face. Finally, Jungkook exhaled heavily and stepped closer. “Fuck. You really are my type.”
Heat rose up Jimin’s neck. He was just teasing… surely.
“Pretty eyes, pretty lips, pretty everything.” Jungkook’s tone dropped and Jimin swallowed, suddenly feeling sweaty for a different reason.
Jimin bit his lip and Jungkook followed the movement. Jimin’s always had a fucked up attraction for ‘rough around the edges’ guys, and Jungkook surpassed that criteria, and he was eyeing him like he was going to eat him up. Jimin dug his teeth into the pillow of his lip as arousal started to form in his lower stomach. It didn’t help that Jungkook was so good looking, a bad boy wet dream. Everything about him from his ruffled hair, dark eyes and toned forearms to his defined hamstrings and thighs screamed sex. Wow, I’m really fucked up. He’s a criminal. This is so wrong.
“Stop that.” Jungkook narrowed his eyebrows, voice low and husky, staring at Jimin’s lips, “unless you want me to make you get on your knees.”
This is wrong. This is wrong. Jimin repeated in his head furiously.
“Why so quiet? You want to?” Jungkook whispered amusedly, pupils dilated and eyelids heavy, his mouth hovered across Jimin’s ear. He brushed a thumb over Jimin’s lower lip and gently released it from his front teeth, applying new pressure with the pad of his thumb instead.
“You’re injured…” Jimin began dumbly, mind dazed and searching for some excuse to persuade himself it was a bad idea. His cheeks were burning, he could feel sweat at his temples from how heated his face was becoming. When he spoke his tongue had brushed across Jungkook’s thumb. His stance loosened.
Jungkook grinned devilishly. “Are you worried about me, baby?”
Jimin’s eyelids fluttered closed at that – he’d always been a bit weak for that term of endearment. Jungkook had a hypnotic nuance when he said it too, rolling off his tongue naturally.
“You liked that.” Jungkook sounded smug and arrogant and he wasn’t wrong.
“I just don’t want to have to bandage you up again.” Jimin muttered, trying to sound nonchalant and most likely failing.
“Then I promise to be gentle, for my sake, of course.” Jungkook’s other hand slipped down to Jimin’s ass.
Jimin bit back a moan as Jungkook squeezed the flesh and then rubbed two fingers down between the cheeks, pressing at his hole and making Jimin’s knees weak.
The last shred of sanity disappeared. Jimin’s body was practically begging to be taken, and now his mind was convinced too. With lust racing through him, Jimin sank to his knees, looking up nervously. Giving himself up like this – it was risky and heady. It enthralled him.
If he was surprised, Jungkook masked it well with a pleased smirk. He carded his fingers through Jimin’s hair. “Are you consenting, petal?”
Jimin’s cheeks burned. He hadn’t expected a question like that. How could he so abruptly change from being terrified to so wanting of Jungkook?
This is wrong.
Jungkook groaned at the back of his throat. “Fuck, you’re perfect.” He unbuckled his belt, putting the gun to the side and pulling out his semi-hardened cock.
Oh. He was very well endowed and not even fully hard. Jimin gulped, wondering what the fuck he had just gotten himself into and yet more excited than he had been in a very long time. He reached to touch it, but Jungkook stopped him.
“Just your mouth.”
Jimin whined quietly and leaned forward, lips brushing against the head and in that moment he realised just how turned on he was too. Shame and humiliation burned through him as he took satisfaction in the way Jungkook hardened against his lips. He mouthed against the length, placing small kisses and trailing his tongue towards the base, eyes closed.
Jungkook let out the nicest sounds.
Jimin worked his way back to the head and took the first half bravely into his mouth. Jungkook’s fingers tightened in his hair.
Without realising it, he reached up and grabbed Jungkook’s thighs to steady himself as he took the rest in – or rather, tried to. Jungkook’s girth and length was impressive to say the least, and Jimin felt him hit the back of his throat earlier than he expected. Flicking his eyes up to meet Jungkook’s, he traced his tongue up the length, hollowing his cheeks and sucking lightly. Jungkook leaned over and gripped the kitchen counter with one hand, biceps tensed and Jimin closed his eyes and focussed on the weight of it, the sensation of Jungkook’s cock in his mouth. His mouth was stretched but it was a nice ache.
Jungkook pulled his hair impatiently and Jimin choked briefly, before beginning to move his mouth up and down his cock, moaning despite himself.
“Fucking perfect mouth.” Jungkook’s thighs quivered slightly before he pushed Jimin’s head forward so he took in the whole thing. Jimin felt tears prick his eyes as he resisted the urge to gag. “Scratch my thighs if it’s too much.”
Jimin glanced up, momentarily confused by his words and also a bit dumbfounded by his consideration, but then realised when Jungkook began to thrust into his mouth, gripping his hair and using him to chase his release. Jimin fought his reflex down, relishing the way Jungkook groaned and praised him, nails digging in to the thighs but never scraping down.
“You take it so well, baby.” Jungkook smirked. “Made to take cock.”
Jimin moaned despite the humiliation, vibrations making Jungkook swear and grip the counter, knuckles white. He fucked into Jimin’s mouth, never slowing down, not in the least bit gentle, but there was a strange sense of security within Jimin even on his knees, displayed the way he was. Jungkook’s hand moved from the strands of hair to the back of Jimin’s neck, groans raising just a few tones higher as he came in Jimin’s mouth, keeping him there so he had no choice but to swallow. “Fuck – so good.”
Jimin hated to admit he preened under the praise, swallowing down the thick fluid as Jungkook pulsed into his mouth. Jimin knew he liked being complimented – in and out of bed – but something about it coming from someone like Jungkook made him extra keen to please.
Jungkook breathed heavily as he went soft in Jimin’s mouth, pushing Jimin off him and recollecting himself. Jimin stared up, stupidly clueless and mind blank. There was cum dripping down his chin. Jungkook laughed breathlessly, stare hungry, and then the next second Jimin was being pulled up, tossed over Jungkook’s shoulder and taken to the bedroom.
Jimin ached everywhere when he woke up. His ass burned and his thighs felt too weak. The room reeked of sex. When he went to the bathroom his saw his neck and chest were covered in hickeys that weren’t going to fade for a few days. Jimin brushed a thumb over his left nipple and hissed, remembering Jungkook’s teeth on them.
What have I done?
This was so fucked.
“He came to you a day ago?” Officer Ji exchanged looks with Kang.
He came in me.
Jimin shivered and pinched himself. “Y-Yeah. He was hurt. I think the Jeons were in some sort of fight with another family. That’s all he said.”
The two older men exchanged a brief look.
“I guess you were in a convenient location, from what we heard there was some disagreement about a deal gone wrong.” Kang said and Jimin noticed the way he kept staring at the hickeys. “Busy night?”
Jimin tugged on his jacket collar, wondering if Officer Kang suspected. He didn’t look like it yet, more amused and curious at the moment. “You don’t need to know about my private life.”
“Sorry.” Kang chuckled. “If Jungkook comes again, try and build rapport. Jungkook would be far more useful than Chanyeol for collecting evidence. It seems you got lucky.”
Lucky. Jimin wanted to scoff. All of this seemed like bad luck – and Officer Ji and Kang? They made they own damn luck.
Once again feeling stupid and used, and now dirty on top of that, Jimin hurriedly left the small café.
Jimin felt like he was walking around with a target on his back, like anyone he walked past could be an enemy, a threat. This informant task had put his whole life out of motion. He was risking everything for a cause he didn’t even fully understand, for people he didn’t even trust.
Jimin cried quietly into his washed bedsheets.
Jungkook visited him again a week later, this time dressed in an expensive suit, looking extremely out of place at Jimin’s apartment but appearing much like the first time Jimin saw him. Jimin steeled himself, tried not to show how affected he was by his presence.
“What are you doing here?” Jimin said coldly. They can’t do this again – Jimin slept with a criminal.
Jungkook pushed the door open and let himself in, strength far superior to Jimin’s, and crowded Jimin up against the wall. He gave him a teasing smile – he had Jimin right where he wanted him. “I missed you.”
Jimin flushed and his skin prickled but his hands wanted to pull him closer. “You missed my body.”
“Same thing, isn’t it?” Jungkook mumbled coyly against his neck as he began laving at the skin, sucking the area and nipping gently with blunt teeth.
“We shouldn’t…” Jimin whispered despite tilting his head back to give him easier access, closing the door blindly.
“Says who?” Jungkook chuckled whilst his hands gripped Jimin’s hips tightly.
Jimin closed his eyes as Jungkook’s fingers pressed into his curves and dimples. He knew exactly how to have Jimin putty in his hands, seemed to have memorised every one of his sensitive spots.
Jimin sighed as Jungkook captured his lips into a heated kiss, tongue curling with his and then deeper into his mouth. His body felt so good.
Was this really so bad?
He didn’t know much about what Jungkook did illegally, and he wasn’t sure he wanted to find out. Then again… maybe Jimin could get information easier this way, and then be rid of Ji and Kang. He was doing this for good, right? The police wanted him to get close to these kinds of people and gain their trust. He was helping to take the Jeon family and all the other corrupt people down… right?
“Are you still scared of me, petal?” Jungkook whispered as he caught Jimin’s earlobe between his teeth, making him whine.
“Yes.” Jimin admitted softly.
Jungkook didn't look surprised by his answer, if anything, a little frustrated. “And of what exactly?”
Jimin glanced away.
“That I might hurt you?”
A small wince of confirmation.
Jungkook brushed a strand of hair from Jimin’s eyes. “I don’t like wasting innocent lives.”
Jimin blinked up at him, horrified that Jungkook just so casually admitted to killing. Would I still be innocent if you knew what I was?
He was distracted half a second later by Jungkook’s smooth voice. “And if you tell me to stop right now I will, without punishment or consequence.” He ran a palm up Jimin’s back, under his sweater. “I may be a criminal but I’m not a cruel man, Jimin.”
How could those be mutually exclusive?
He had probably hurt countless people, even killed them. He ran illegal businesses. But maybe those illegal businesses were also what allowed people to have money and live. Jimin had learnt crime families often supported many other people, sometimes those not directly involved with the family. But, it was still wrong, wasn’t it? Jimin furrowed his eyebrows; it was too much to be thinking of when Jungkook was pressing kisses across his collarbone.
I'm doing this because I have to. I need to build trust. Jimin barely believed the things he told himself.
Was this attraction always going to win out in the end?
Within the next few minutes Jungkook had stripped Jimin of his clothes and manoeuvred him face down, ass up. He was buried inside Jimin a second later.
The next morning Jimin felt regretful again.
It became a cycle, and each time it became easier to let Jungkook through his door.
Jimin admitted it to Officer Ji and Officer Kang two weeks later when the guilt was festering and eating him up inside too much.
It was wrong and Jimin knew it was wrong, and the whole morals and ethics were complicated and kept Jimin up many nights long after Jungkook had left the apartment, but when he was with Jungkook it was just simple and easy. He craved Jungkook's warmth and touch, his smooth voice, his grounding presence.
i can't believe myself.
“Well, we’ve known for Jungkook to have partners before but we’ve never been able to have them as an informant. This is – do you realise your position? Jungkook oversees majority of the illegal deals in Seoul and helps in handling conflicts and arrangements with other mafia families.” Officer Ji was evidently over the fucking moon at the news. “We’re also sure he’s also the one who the Jeon professional hitmen report to.”
Jimin felt the blood drain from his face. He was letting a person like that into his bed most nights. Jungkook even stayed over a few times. Jimin cooked him breakfast. He sunk back into the cheap café seats as the two police officers chatted, delighted with the news.
“The Jeon family have their own hitmen?” Jimin asked meekly. Should anything shock him anymore?
“Yeah, but their main one leaves this bloody flower pattern across the chest – a signature. Whether the person is shot or strangled or knifed – it’s there. It’s the Jeon’s family sigil.”
Jimin felt like his limbs has gone numb. Jungkook had a tattoo on his chest – a mess of swirls and lines and it sort of resembled a flower. Jimin had traced it with his fingers, fascinated by the design. He felt repulsed knowing that was what they carved onto their victims to show ownership of the bodies and then take their life.
“Have you been able to find out anything?” Officer Ji pressed urgently and Jimin stared into the milky surface of his latte.
“Um, not really. He doesn’t talk much about that, but I guess I don’t ask either.” Jimin preferred not to know and live in his ignorant bubble of believing Jungkook wasn’t a murderer or a dangerous crime syndicate leader. “I-I’ll try and get more out of him. I’m sorry.”
“You don’t have to apologize.” Officer Kang said, the kinder of the two. “I have to ask, he didn’t force himself, did he? Because we would love to add more to his charges.”
Jimin felt his chest clench. Jungkook is not a good man. “No, I… It was… he didn’t force himself.” There was shame in admitting he wanted to sleep with Jungkook. He presses kisses on my forehead before he goes.
Jimin pushed the thought aside, the butterflies too. He needed to pick a side, and it had to be the right one.
“You’re quiet today.” Jungkook said into Jimin’s neck.
Jimin turned off the stove. Since his last conversation with Ji and Kang, he’d been stuck in his head a lot. “I’m cooking.”
“This is awfully domestic.” Jungkook commented as Jimin grabbed two plates automatically.
“Oh.” He didn’t know why he felt like he had just been slapped in the face. Jungkook’s only ever really come around for sex, he didn’t know why he expected anything more. Jimin distracted himself with portioning rice and some pickled vegetables and the egg rolls he had just made. He hesitated when he reached for the second plate. “Do you… are you going to eat too?”
Jungkook glanced at him. “Sure.” He looked like he was trying not to smile. Warmth spread through Jimin’s chest..
He sat down on the couch, turning the television on and setting the volume to a low but audible level. It was the evening news. Jungkook sat down beside Jimin a few minutes later, having helped himself to a glass of whisky. He had bought a new bottle last week – a nice, expensive one – because the one Jimin had wasn’t up to standards apparently.
It was rather uninteresting, some politics here and there, a few different stories from around the country as well as international. There was still tension between them, a mutual distrust. Still, there was also something else between them – a feeling of normalcy, of affection.
“I sometimes wonder if I’ll see you.” Jimin mumbled. “Like, getting arrested or something, I don’t know.”
Jungkook paused, chopsticks resting on the plate. “My work is usually too clean for that. Police don’t allow many reports on this whole underground business – it tips their hand.”
Jimin swallowed, unsure if he was ever going to get used to hearing these sort of things. Especially with how offhandedly Jungkook said it.
“What do you do? I mean, like the illegal bit.”
Jungkook’s expression was neutral as he took in Jimin’s question. It was a practiced reaction. “Why do you want to know?” He asked calmly.
Jimin put his mostly finished plate onto the shallow table in front of them, hands clammy and heart racing. He felt like he was on thin ice. No matter how comfortable he had become with Jungkook, at times he couldn’t forget who he was talking to.
“I get worried about you.”
Jungkook’s gaze softened. Jimin knew Jungkook had a soft spot for him – that was obvious enough from the way he kept coming back, from the way his treatment changed over the visits. He wasn’t so harsh in his tone, didn’t look at him with that same intimidating stare.
It felt wrong to take advantage and manipulate that. But officer Ji and Kang were expecting him to get information and Jimin had to deliver.
“I’m worried I’ll never see you again.” Jimin added. His voice sounded too honest. What exactly was he supposed to be faking again?
“Don’t say shit like that.” Jungkook sounded a bit pissed. He leaned in to kiss him, tasting like expensive whisky.
Jimin wrapped him arms around his broad shoulders before he was jolted out of the trance Jungkook so effortlessly put him under. Focus.
“Will you tell me – ah – tell me before you do something dangerous?” Jimin buried his face in the crook of Jungkook’s neck, lips grazing down the line of his chest tattoo where it was just visible.
“Won’t that make you worry more?” Jungkook started unbuttoning Jimin’s shirt, fingers quick and dexterous.
“Maybe… but I’ll know if you don’t visit that something happened. So I’m not just uselessly waiting for you all the time.” Jimin managed to say. Fuck, his voice was too raw.
Jungkook kissed up the margin of Jimin’s ribs as if pondering his words. “That doesn’t make any sense.”
Jimin felt his face heat up. He had planned this out but when he tried to say it the words all came out wrong. “I just… want to know. Because... I don’t know. I just do.”
He's going to see right through this, fuck.
Jungkook ran his fingers over fading, old bruises that had been put there by him. He kissed over the marks, thinking. Just when Jimin was ready to tell him to forget about it because the apprehension was becoming too much, Jungkook gave in.
“There’s a few deals going on tomorrow. Kim family. Should be fine, though.”
Jimin froze, half astounded that Jungkook had actually told him.
“Are you going to wait up for me, petal?” Jungkook smirked, pulling Jimin onto his lap, food forgotten.
There was something warm in Jungkook’s gaze. Jimin’s heart ached. He nodded, shy all of a sudden.
“Are you going to stay tonight?” Jimin asked as he ran his hands up Jungkook’s chest, defined muscles now familiar under his fingers.
“Not tonight.” Jungkook replied as his mouth latched onto Jimin’s nipple, tongue swirling around the nub.
Jimin moaned, broken and lost to the pleasure, disappointment not registering.
Later that night he texted Officer Kang the information. He didn’t get the location but hopefully they could figure that out.
Jimin was up until two in the morning, tossing and turning and feeling really fucking horrible.
With the tip, the police had been able to interrupt one of the deals going on between someone working for the Jeons and a relative of the Kim family. They had been taken in for interviewing though they lawyered up soon after. Still, it was evidence.
“You did well, kid.” Officer Ji had congratulated him.
Jimin sighed as he finished up arranging a bouquet for a young woman, giving her a friendly smile and wishing her a good day.
Jungkook had come back after that deal – he didn’t seem bothered. Jimin was glad he hadn’t been taken in by the police and then felt awful for feeling that way.
“Everything went well?” Jimin had asked gently, half asleep as he let Jungkook into the apartment.
Jungkook looked so handsome in a black turtleneck and jeans. So beautiful and dangerous. “Mostly.” He nuzzled into Jimin’s slightly damp, freshly shampooed hair. “You smell good. I’ve been thinking of you all day.”
Jimin lazily peppered kisses up Jungkook’s sharp jawline. “Me too.”
Shaking himself from his reminiscing, Jimin tended to a couple of the succulents lining the sides of the store, light filtering in from the window. He liked working here – it wasn’t the best money but it was relatively stress free and the couple who owned the store were kind.
Jimin rubbed his lower back, an ache present from a few nights back, and glanced out the window. He stopped, startled.
There was a man outside, staring back at Jimin. He had slightly wavy chestnut hair and cold, piercing eyes.
Jimin felt a chill throughout his whole body.
The man turned away and left, disappearing around the corner.
Who was he?
Jimin realised he was shaking. Had Jungkook found out about him? Oh God. Holy fuck who was that?
He could have been nobody, maybe just a random guy on the street.
Jimin moved away from the window, breath short and shallow. Was he just overreacting? Jimin closed the shop early that day and took a different route home, going down all the backstreet ways and looping around streets to be entirely sure nobody was following him.
He didn’t stop thinking about it until Jungkook came later that night, the same as ever and giving no indication he had sent someone after Jimin.
Was Jungkook just acting? Did he like watching the inner turmoil?
Jimin didn’t know.
“Not in the mood?” Jungkook said as Jimin rejected his advances, shying away from his body.
“I just had a long day.” He made sure to look at Jungkook when he said that, to see if he would give anything away.
Did you really expect him to?
Jimin didn’t know who he could trust right now. “Can you leave? I just – I need some space today.”
Jungkook frowned and Jimin felt like this was it - Jungkook knew.
But instead he just sighed and left, leaving Jimin more conflicted and confused than ever.
There was a little comfort in telling Officer Ji and Officer Kang what had happened. They asked Jimin for a description and said they’d try and see if they could identify who it was, but they had to be careful with meeting up from now on because if it was one of Jungkook’s employees then that meant he was suspicious.
Jungkook hadn’t come to Jimin’s place since Jimin kicked him out. Jimin did regret how he handled that now.
He wanted to see him – partly because he was being pressured by the police for more tips, but mostly because he, well, he missed him.
Jimin should feel safer without Jungkook around, and yet now he felt more exposed than ever.
“Hey Jimin? Someone just came into the store, can you go help him?” Mrs Lee asked as she packaged up some deliveries.
“Of course.” Jimin exited the back storage area of the store and to the front, scanning the room for the customer.
Oh, speak of the devil.
Jungkook noticed him and gave a small smile.
“What are you doing here?” Jimin asked, feeling ridiculous because he felt self-conscious. He probably had some dirt sprinkled on his cheek and his apron was dirty and his hair was quite messy. This was the first time Jungkook had ever seen him at work.
“I wanted to know if you were still pissed at me.” Jungkook said, his jacket draped over one arm and the sleeves of his thin shirt rolled up, emphasizing his already outlined biceps.
“I wasn’t pissed at you.” Jimin replied quickly. “I was having a bad day. It’s… it was nothing.”
Jungkook didn’t look convinced. “Don’t be evasive. Just tell me what I did wrong, so I can fix it.”
It was strange how Jungkook so easily said things that made Jimin’s heart drop into free fall, in that electrifying way. “I swear you didn’t do anything.” Jimin mumbled and reached for Jungkook’s hand. “Come over tonight. I’ll make it up to you.”
“Not tonight. There’s…” Jungkook glanced around the store to confirm its emptiness, “we’ve been having problems with another family.”
“So come afterwards?” A few days ago he would have been mortified with how eager he sounded.
Jungkook chuckled lightly, but his tone was set. “No. You don’t want to see me after. Trust me, baby.”
Jimin’s insides twisted and he could feel his grip on Jungkook’s hand getting tighter. “W-What are you going to do?”
“Nothing you should worry about.”
“You don’t want to know.” Jungkook pulled his hand away, expression hardened.
“Oh God.” Jimin took a few steps away. He thought he had gotten used to this, but maybe all he had gotten better at was ignoring it.
He heard Jungkook sigh behind him. “This is what being with me consists of. I’m not going to change this for you.” Jungkook paused and Jimin stared at a trail of ivy from a pot on the counter.
“Being with you?”
Jimin turned around hesitantly, Jungkook had both hands in his pockets, some dark hair falling into his eyes. “Are we together, now?”
Jungkook frowned. “Aren’t we?”
Jimin felt a rush of air expire through his mouth, a little dazed and a little confused. There was something satisfying and warm spreading through his chest. “But we never go out on dates.”
“It’s safer that way.”
“And we don’t make any sense.” Jimin whispered. He wasn’t part of Jungkook’s world, and he was barely involved in his. Since when did this arrangement become something more romantic? For how long had Jimin wanted it, had Jungkook been thinking this?
Jungkook laid one hand on Jimin’s waist. “I care for you. Isn’t that enough?”
How can Jungkook be sweet like this?
“But we’re so different.”
“That’s true. You’re far too good for someone like me, and I’ll never be able to give you half the things most relationships would.” Jungkook leaned forward to brush his lips across Jimin’s forehead. “but I still want you.”
Jimin shivered at his words, but not necessarily in a bad way. He wanted to laugh and cry. He was a mess. He was an awful person, the fucking worst. Jimin pulled Jungkook into a hug, pressing his face into his collar and smelling his expensive cologne, trying not to fall apart and hold on to this lie which was becoming his life. Becoming a part of him.
Jungkook hummed in confirmation.
“Stay safe.” Jimin kissed his cheek quickly before walking him to the store exit. Jungkook smiled and left, leaving Jimin with a thrumming heart and a stupid, rosy blush.
Jimin bit his lip, erased and retyped the words over and over as he messaged Officer Kang about Jungkook saying there was some dispute between the families. He got a reply saying they knew some of the common places the Jeons carried out their ‘resolutions’ to family conflicts.
Jimin felt fearful and anxious, for a lot of different things.
The next day officer Ji called and said they had located the scene but weren’t able to apprehend any of those involved.
Jimin saw that strange man from a week ago across the street when he was walking back from Starbucks in the morning.
Jungkook didn’t come visit him the next day.
Jimin called in sick and locked himself in his apartment, wondering when these walls were going to come crashing down.