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The First Annual Revolutionary-Utopian Council was meeting on the peace planet Pax, for ten days, despite several attempts to entirely destroy any plans for meeting by capitalist and imperial forces. There had been thirty-three hundred sabotage attempts over the web, attempting to incite unnecessary conflict between the various utopian factions by assuming false identities and thoroughly confusing the populace. (This failed.) There had been fifty-five trade embargos placed upon the more remote utopian planets, from the capitalist traders, in order to starve them out, and show them the consequences of trying to unite. (This failed.) There had been twenty assassination attempts upon the delegates to the Council to try and delay proceedings forever. (This failed.) There had been countless attempts to infiltrate utopian societies and sow the seeds of destruction. (This too failed.)

And so. The First Annual Revolutionary Utopian Council was happening, despite widespread panic and chaos throughout the universe, at its arrival.

Really. Jimin didn’t know what all the fuss was about. He’d been excited when they’d set out on the journey three months ago, but now that he was here at the conference, he was just bored. They had only been attacked once on the way here, and that had not been on purpose, with a bountyhunter having mistaken their vehicle for another’s.

And the actual proceedings…well, Jimin had really been hoping for more, but it was nothing more and nothing less than a group meeting at home on Cylon had been like. A panel of experts, at the front, and the audience being educated in the various viewpoints, bringing in their own viewpoints, to discuss and barter and bitterly create a somewhat common way of thought on the matters.

The procedural steps were of course, a little different, since not every utopia was a communal socialist utopia, and held different opinions on the ways that meetings with large gatherings of people were run—but it was similar enough that Jimin was mostly tuned out, as the panel started talking. He was only sitting in on this panel because of one person, anyway.

“Alright, introducing Kim Seokjin, from Shissan. Known mainly for his intensive treatise on Pleasure and Boredom in the Neoliberal Age, he’s also known for his ability to pour one back better than anybody else.” called out the main moderator of the panel, a woman who Jimin thought was called Gukjoo, but wasn’t entirely sure.

“Anybody wants to test it out, you’ll find me at the bar after the day’s over.” Seokjin joked, standing up from behind his seat, with an amused smile. “Thanks for having me on panel today, it’s been an interesting discussion so far.” The first thing that Jimin really noted about Seokjin’s appearance was how much space in the room Seokjin occupied. Not simply because of his broad shoulders and height, but also because of his presence rapidly expanding throughout the room. A charisma that was difficult to match, especially as he turned around to look at everybody in the audience in the eye, with utmost confidence.

“However, I feel that our discussion of distinctions between work and play have been a little black and white. I feel our definition of how labour itself is defined falls a little flat.” Seokjin paused for dramatic effect and turned towards the first speaker, a Lllevalan with four horns, instead of three across their face. “Erhasa’s definition of work was whether it was enjoyable or not for the individual, centring the definition of work on whether the individual was partaking in something they enjoyed or not. Their argument therefore was—and correct me if you feel that I am misrepresenting you—that if every individual is partaking in activity that stimulates them and contributes to society positively, it is not truly work. Therefore, this is how we tailor our society to be more utopian, by making sure that everybody partakes in labour that pleases them and does not burden them.”

Jimin, having not paid much attention to the speakers before Seokjin, was a little pleased that Seokjin was summarizing so concisely. He was incredibly biased, but there was always something far more scintillating about these intense theoretical abstractions into philosophy and theory when narrated by a pretty, charismatic personality.

He was also pleased to note that the Lllevalan agreed that this was what they had been arguing, which meant that Jimin really hadn’t missed much. Then Seokjin turned to the pretty Mer woman, floating a little uncomfortably in the small transportable tank behind them, and nodded at her, politely.

“Then, my lovely friend, Tunisa, was arguing that to follow through with a society where everybody is simply chasing pleasure means that several important, and generally unattractive jobs would remain unfilled, and would place pressure and stress upon those who would be pursuing those skills. Instead, she proposed that a more egalitarian system should form, where everybody partakes in essential, physical forms of labour such as construction, maintaining and manufacturing for a certain portion of their day, a far smaller portion of their day than under the system of capitalism. This form of labour often switches, to try and minimize boredom, and increase a greater skillset in everybody. And the rest of the day be free to pursue any other sort of more intellectual or creative activity as play. That this distinction between work and play exist as a very firm boundary, and that we not try and blur the two.”

Seokjin, who had been pacing as he talked, halted suddenly, in the middle of the small stage, and turned to face the audience, with a dramatic lilt. Jimin couldn’t help but rock forward in his chair, entirely engrossed in the performative aspect of this argument.

“But I argue that there is more to the definition of work than either of those things. How many of you in this room take pleasure in the pursuit of creative ambitions?” He asked, and the vast majority of the room, including Jimin, raised their hands to the air. “Many of you, like me, do so. How many of you initially came from an authoritarian, feudalistic, or capitalist society?” Fewer hands rose this time, but there was still a substantial figure.

“Alright, so I’m going to paint a little bit of an example here. Say my friend, our dear moderator Gukjoo, very much enjoys the pursuit of cooking.”

“I do!” said Gukjoo, tilting her head up, in surprise.

“Sure. This is a pretty realistic take. Gukjoo is interested in all aspects of cooking. The artistic, the flavour profile, the motions and care behind the art of cooking. So, if she were to cook at home, by herself, without a time limit or restraint on what ingredients she must use, would you consider that to be work or pleasure?”

“Pleasure.” Most of the audience chorused Jimin stayed quiet. This argument, he’d heard before, having read all of Seokjin’s works online already. Still, there was something quite different about hearing Seokjin orate like this, hands, face, voice and body language all contributing to something even more riveting, despite Jimin already knowing the intellectual conclusion.

“Now, say that Gukjoo and I have teamed up to make a small café for people to eat at. She and I have a limit on resources, since we only can get a certain allocation from our area, so we have to think hard about the recipes we want to make. But Gukjoo still gets to experiment and take her time. Is this work or pleasure?”

The response was more mixed this time, but most people still leaned towards pleasure.

“Now, say that I am both Gukjoo’s friend, but also her manager. We’re a popular café and there are a lot of busy people coming to eat at this restaurant. She now has constraints on time and resources, and can spend less time on her artistry, but still is doing the motions of cooking that she loves. Work or pleasure?”

Seokjin’s eyebrows quirked, in amusement, as the response seemed to split pretty evenly among people.

“Alright, finally, say Gukjoo works under a capitalist. There is a set menu, there is no room for creativity. There are some interesting foods on the menu, and she liked the restaurant when she eats there, but she’s under pressure to cook well, cook fast and cook efficiently, or she will be fired. Work or pleasure?” asked Seokjin.

This time, the answer was obvious. Work.

“Let’s add another layer to this last scenario. Gukjoo is now married to a husband who spends long hours working at a steel factory and has two children. After her shift at work, she must come home and cook for her children and husband, who are tired and cranky. She’s got the freedom to cook what she wants but is aware that her children and her husband have different tastes, and she’s too tired to make several meals, although she could. Work or pleasure?”

“Work.” Mostly everybody chorused.

“But she’s cooking at home? Has no restraints on freedom of food or time?” Seokjin challenged, and the room was mostly silent, though Jimin could see that people were still thinking about this, and processing. “This is where we run into a fallacy with our previous definitions of work. Activities that are enjoyable cease to be so once there is an expectation involved in the production of an outcome, or content. Therefore, my definition of work is when activities are expected to be productive. Cooking, when you need to make food, instead of just want to make food, become labour. Writing, when expected to produce a text, instead of simply doing so on your own time, becomes labour. Productivity is the root to stress and unhappiness.”

He circled on his foot and shrugged. “But what can you do? There must be a certain level of production in society if we wish to live on in a trading society. If I am a customer at Gukjoo’s café, I want a certain type of food, and usually, I would like it quickly, so I can travel elsewhere, and do something else. I can’t wait for her to make the perfect masterpiece of her liking every single time. Sometimes, you just want an edible food to keep going.” Seokjin shrugged. “Or, as much as I would have liked to keep holding onto my treatise, continuing to edit it, further and further, I had to publish it eventually, to show that I was indeed working on something interesting as a researcher, and not just sitting on my arse. Even if it wasn’t perfect.”

This caused a ripple of laughter through the audience, and Jimin couldn’t help but smile.

“So, I think it’s fair to say that not all deadlines and restraints are negative, per se. But they do mean that something transforms into labour at that point. This is the fallacy neoliberalism made. Since they offered the chance to many creatives to be creative on a production line, they assumed that there would need to be no leisure time, since the productive activity was enjoyable. However, it is not always so, and we must remember that when an activity is imposed upon with a deadline or restraints, it therefore becomes labour.”

Seokjin sat back against the table, extending his long legs outwards. “This is where I support my friend Tunisa. Work is work, and play is play, and they must be separated. But I do not agree with her in agreeing that all physical labour is labour, and that therefore, creative and intellectual activities must be leisure activities. Intellectual and creative exploits are labour, just as much so as physical exploits, and therefore, all work time, where there are deadlines and restraints and limits imposed by another, or by society, must be part of her proposed rotation schedule. This—will of course, be inefficient. But as I feel most of us agree, efficiency is not the ultimate value of our societies.”

“And of course, we must extend this definition of labour elsewhere. Many humans, thanks to our feminist friends, are already familiar with the term ‘emotional labour’ but for those of you who are not, this revolves around the idea that the organization of the private life is often delegated to the woman, and therefore, becomes a separate burden.” Seokjin turned to nod towards some of the front row. “For those who live in more communal spaces, of course, this idea is different and strange, but under authoritarianism or capitalism, nuclear family units were considered the most efficient way for workers to renew themselves after the lack of perceived privacy and interference in their workday.”

Seokjin exhaled, looking a little grim. “The traditional system of capitalism functions under the element that all of the workforce labour is placed upon the man, and all of the household labour is placed upon the woman. However, this system ended up being oppressive towards women—was perhaps even intended to be oppressive towards the woman, and many human women rebelled by joining the workplace. They could not, shed, however, the emotional labour of the home that still was perceived to their task—if not in action, in thought. Therefore, in organization of any utopian society, we must make sure that the burden of planning the upkeep and maintenance of private spaces, or communal spaces is a compensated labour and is considered labour.”

Gukjoo made a gesture and Seokjin exhaled. “Alas, time constrains me a little, and I’m not sure I will be able to pivot towards my complex structure for attempting to be egalitarian in distributing labour, while still allowing for the pursuit of various creative, intellectual and physical pursuits in free time. I do have this thesis though, and it can be found in my essay, ‘Simple Changes, Complex Structures’ on JournalsOrg. I also talk about, there, how you deal with those who go over-and-above when in service of their community, and what it even means to go over and above in service of a community. In an organized society without money, these ideas are crucial in making sure the quality of life of every single person is maintained.”

Seokjin bowed low, and his hair, curled like a comma across his brow, flopped down, in an elegant collapse. Jimin couldn’t quite draw his eyes away from Seokjin blowing a kiss to the audience, and taking a seat again, as everybody applauded, amused.

He was certainly more of a charmer in person. Something about Seokjin’s works had always drawn Jimin to him. They were a little aligned in the creation of a new world philosophy, after all--especially when it came to creating and sustaining a lively, yet sustainable economy, and Seokjin’s ideas were always very nuance din the sort of realistic way that Jimin liked. But if they had been compelling online, this sort of presentation was something more than he could have ever imagined.

Not so eventful a meeting, perhaps, as Jimin had been anticipating, but meaningful.

The questions started, mostly aimed at the Lllevalan to give them a chance to try and defend their original thesis about a lack of separation for work: which fair, was decently persuasive. After all, in a world where production wasn’t done in service of making somebody richer, but making society better, the pressure was lesser, which would hopefully still allow for labour to be pleasurable. Still, there was little way to account for work that was not pleasurable to anybody.

The other questions were directed to the Mer woman, wondering about where she drew lines between work and pleasure, mostly well-meaning. People were kind in these sorts of utopian settings, Jimin knew. Perhaps too much, in fear of falling back into old ways.

Jimin was rarely afraid of breaking those boundaries if he had to. Still, he didn’t feel the need to do anything right now, not as Seokjin sat back, and listened to his fellow panelists, with a light expression of contentedness on his face. That was much more fun to enjoy, than challenge. But Jimin was nothing, if not good at challenging.

Finally, the panel ended, and Jimin dawdled his way up to the stage, to let any other single questionee get up there, before he did. Finally, he caught Seokjin’s eyes, and approached, brightly, holding a hand to shake.

“I enjoyed your talk a lot, Seokjin.” he said, and found himself packing just a little at how soft Seokjin’s hands were. Did he moisturize? Who moisturized their hands? How did anybody have such long and pretty fingers? Then he realized he’d been holding on too long, and let go, feeling the red start to stain his face already. “I’m uhh-Park Jimin.”

Seokjin’s mouth dropped open and looked up and down Jimin, appraisingly, lingering just a little on Jimin’s unbuttoned shirt, before settling back on Jimin’s face. He had the distinct idea that Seokjin wasn’t really looking at his eyes anymore, though. “Is that so?” he asked, and his voice was low and a little hoarse. “Pleasure to finally meet you.”

Jimin grinned, nervously, feeling a little stupid now. He should have asked a question in the conference. It would have been so much easier to be smooth when he was in academic mode, and interested in the subject material. He should have talked about machine labour, that was part of his thesis, and something Seokjin still couldn’t answer. But now, he was staring into Seokjin’s eyes from far too close, and his knees were a little weak.

“Yeah.” Jimin said, a little stupidly. “I just...can’t believe it’s happening.”

Seokjin smiled, looking a little more nervous himself. “Right? It’s been what--fifteen years?”

“Long time.” Jimin confirmed, looking down at his feet, for a moment to steel himself, before looking back up, more confidently. “But worth it. So worth it. I mean, I’d regretted not taking photos, even if it was dangerous, but. The reveal moment is kind of worth it, huh?”

“Yeah.” Seokjin said, with a laugh, bending down to grab his bag. “You’re a little shorter than I’d imagined, but--”

“Oh Elysium, save me. I’ve heard that like six times since I got here. I’m not even that short!” Jimin complained, unable to stop the flare of temper. “I’m taller than most everybody on my planet.”

“I know, I know.” Seokjin said, soothingly, but there was a glint of mischief in his eyes. “It’s just you give off such big dick energy in your comments, I was imagining someone a little different.”

Jimin could feel himself blush, in light embarrassment, but he refused to lose. “Who’s to say I don’t still have big dick energy, huh?” he demanded, arching an eyebrow, and smiled a little, at succeeding to turn Seokjin just a shade redder than before. He marched off to the back of the room to grab a glass of ice-cold water, and Jimin followed, a little amused.

At Jimin’s slightly smug smirk, Seokjin huffed, a little annoyed. “I can’t believe you found me first because of scheduling.”

Jimin shrugged, with a laugh. “No way, Seokjin, this is all skill. You actually missed my other talk.”

Seokjin’s eyes widened and he shook his head fervently. “No way!! The only one about ethics in new technology is up next.”

“Sure.” Jimin admitted, with a light grin, shoving his hands into his pockets, “But I was in the Communal Living roundtable too, talking on ways technology can help make communal living easier and allow for better communication.”

Pulling a face. Seokjin slapped Jimin’s shoulder with surprising force. “How the hell was I going to guess that one, huh? All I have for the conferences are the titles of the panels because of all of the security concerns.” The Revolutionary Utopian Conference planners had decided to not make anything except the names, times and locations of the panels public, for fear of facilitating easy assassinations of important figures. Nobody could enter Pax while armed, of course, but it was difficult to prevent other types of force.

Of course, people could exchange names of panels to each other through private messaging--but somehow, it had turned into a competition between Jimin and Seokjin. Who could find each other first, simply on how well they knew each other’s work? And Jimin had won.

“I did write a paper about it~” Jimin said, in a sing-song voice, as they exited the main conference room area, past the groups of intellectuals and activists and idea-makers all crowded into corners exchanging information, or debating furiously, even in the offtime.

“Bastard. I guess you did win.” Seokjin said, but there was a fond look on his face, and Jimin couldn’t help the warmth that spread through his body. That sort of smile was dangerous and he had to cut it off by talking about something he was more suited to doing.

“You know, you really missed a portion of your lecture to talk about where physical labour can be ameliorated or not by robots. We have to start talking about robot rights if AIs get any more advanced.” Jimin pointed out, as they clattered down the stairs, Seokjin pausing to wave hello to a lanky person, wearing a fanny pack.

“Yeah, for sure.” Seokjin said, sending a rude gesture towards the lanky person when they pulled a kissy face towards Jimin. Somebody he knew clearly, and Jimin suppressed the slight spark of annoyed confusion. “I’m just not the person to talk about it? Somebody was interrogating Tunisa about the role of sex work in her structure, too, and it’s just. We’re not yet experts in that, though I want to be! There’s no prescribed way to approach AI rights and the disentangling of sex work from a fundamentally unequal world. It’s so variant on each world, you know?”

Jimin nodded, with a shrug. “Sure, but people bring it up not because it’s an attack on you and your thesis, but because they want you to expand your thesis to include it, because it is a part of our world. Maybe AI rights can wait a little longer, but sex work is arguably fundamentally human and needs to be addressed immediately.”

Seokjin looked like he was about to answer, before shutting his mouth shut, almost cartoonishly. “You’re trying to bait me into talking about work even more. No. This is my lunch break, damnit. We’re not going to talk about work!” He waved his hands out in a firm manner, and Jimin couldn’t help but laugh just a little. Cute, but somehow, that serious furrow to his brow was incredibly attractive, and made Jimin shudder, just a little. “Don’t laugh at me!” Seokjin pouted, “Come on, let’s go and get some food.”

“There’s a lot of really nice food here.” Jimin allowed, as they exited the conference centre, into the bustling street. “I was surprised that there was a lot of vegetarian food here, I honestly thought that all capitalist nations ate meat with every meal.”

Around them, the metallic structures of Pax’s high rises protruded around them and Jimin looked up, to crane at one of the more rusted buildings and the swinging lanterns that were flickering across its edge, with a frown.

There was no natural sunlight on Pax, an entirely artificial place, created by one of the richest pacifists in the world, Ysagrid, as a place of absolute neutrality, who nobody could own. Jimin wasn’t entirely sure how it functioned without the implicit threat of violence behind it, but somehow, anybody in the universe could dock on Pax, as long as they forfeited all weapons and pledged an oath of their pacifism.

It didn’t mean that Pax was a good world, by any means. Still as capitalistic as the rest of the universe, its only saving graces were the laws against violence, and the tight emphasis on equality for all upon the surface. It was not utopian, by any means, but it was trying to be fair, so Jimin gave it that much. He just supposed he had a particular distaste for the city of Mos, for its lack of wildlife and greenery. Only sentient creatures could live here, and it felt stale for its lack.

“Nah, people sometimes just don’t like meat, or have specific diets without it. Lots more people eat meat, but not everybody.” Seokjin said, lightly, angling a look towards Jimin. “I keep forgetting you were born on Cylon, and weren’t a traveller.”

Jimin shrugged, a feeling a little shy. There was a distinct look of envy on Seokjin’s face, before he turned away, to face towards large digital screens lining many of the walls of the buildings, covered in advertisements.

Large pouted faces applied makeup, over their shiny faces, that glowed with implants. Beautiful beaches were used as the backdrops of perfumes, eyedrops and all sorts of implements, things Jimin could barely recognize. Skin brightening cream--apparently highly prized, all sorts of spaceships--traversing all sorts of terrains, fabricators displaying their capabilities to two astonished children, some sort of new type of alcohol/dessert crossover, that looked absurdly large; all glowing, glitzy, and never staying on the screen for longer than five seconds, moving past at dizzying speeds.

“Does it matter so much?” asked Jimin, softly. “Initially, sure, it’s probably really hard to get used to everything, but every time someone tries to get elitist about being born on Cylon, and outsiders being bad influences, somebody shuts them down for egoism.”

“It matters.” Seokjin murmured, firmly. “Cylon’s definitely better than we are in that respect. But then, some critics are justified. Some travellers have a really hard time letting it go. Even for me, it’s hard sometimes.” Seokjin admitted, “Especially on Pax. It’s hard to remember why I hated that world so much.”

“Really?” asked Jimin, throwing a critical eye towards the screens that lit up Seokjin’s face in unnatural colours of purple and green.

“Yeah.” Seokjin said, a little indignant, as he pointed up towards an advert of huge burger, dripping with sauce, and wobbling from the huge stack of meats and vegetables on it. “It’s terrible for you, terrible for the environment, but burgers do taste amazing. That’s very good at making you miss the taste. And from the outside, from all of these adverts, you usually see the shiny glimmers, the best gold kernels of a society. They’re good at making you wanting anything, at the expense of yourself.”

A person pouting their lips at the camera and posing in front of a mirror flickered onto the screen, taking up most of the screen space. The person seemed to be someone famous, from the way it was presented, but Jimin didn’t recognize them. “Like. When I lived under the Empire, I had a fifteen step makeup routine.” Seokjin said, with a low laugh. “Fifteen! I spent half of my salary on makeup. And it felt so good. It really did, I loved it, but I can’t deny that most of the time, it wasn’t because of the artistry of well-applied makeup. It was almost always because I wanted to get rid of my flaws. I wanted to look like whatever was considered beautiful at the time.”

Jimin didn’t really know what to say. He turned to Seokjin and just touched his arm, gently, reassuringly, and Seokjin smiled, a little dryly, leaning in to boop the side of Jimin’s head. “No matter. I’m not that upset, it was a while back. But it’s easy to fall back into old patterns. It was a little too easy to get used to having money again.”

Jimin perked up, filled with the rant he’d been holding for the five days he’d already spent on this planet. “Money’s the worst!” he said, annoyed. “We keep forgetting to bring it along, and then we can’t just add our food value to the favour systems to labour off later, so I always have to stand there awkwardly at the till, while one of us runs off back towards the flat to get it.”

Seokjin laughed, loud and amused, and it was truly stunning. Jimin couldn’t help but laugh along with him, he was so funny-sounding, but so incredibly charming and addictive. Jimin wanted Seokjin to always laugh. “I bet they’ve gotten really annoyed, huh?”

“Yeah, one of the Earth restaurants banned us from their place when it took Taehyung too long to get back from the flat, when they got lost here!” Jimin said, indignantly. “How does anybody do it? There are so many different sizes and shapes too, how do you know which is which?”

Seokjin covered his mouth, lightly, and Jimin frowned. It wasn’t that funny! Money was legitimately confusing, and Jimin didn’t understand why people concerned themselves with it. “You’re using cash. Bullion money is really different depending on where you’re using it. Every single nation within a planet could have a different currency. So that’s complicated. But it’s easier if you have a credit card, all you have to do is make sure you have enough, and just scan it.”

“Huh? They do have a credit system?” asked Jimin, with a frown, as they moved over towards the lifts up towards the upper levels of the city.

“Well yeah, but it’s your own personal credit, not calculating all the favours and labour you’ve done. It’s just an online way of calculating your own possessions, instead of judging a society’s wealth, and playing it off each other.” Seokjin explained, lightly, and Jimin exhaled.

“Elysium, that sounds so annoying.”

Seokjin grinned, lightly. “You think simple transactions like this are bad? I was the best at haggling in my town.”

“Haggling? I’ve heard of it...” Jimin asked, curiously. He strayed on the more toxic parts of the web sometimes and had definitely come across many slang words he sort of understood from context, but didn’t really know.

“Debating over the price and value of an object with the seller.” Seokjin explained, and Jimin couldn’t help but document away his tone of voice when explaining things for later, so he could imagine Seokjin properly, later. “I was the best at arguing the seller down to a really cheap price, from whatever they’d inflated the value to, for profit. Sometimes, I even got really high valued objects for cheap, just by being insistent.” He laughed, dryly, and although it was less attractive than before, there was a quality to it that had Jimin entranced. “I was pretty too, that helped.”

Jimin blinked. “That’s a....strange hobby.” It sounded more stressful than anything, to him. There was a certain ease of not having to worry about prices at home.

“It’s not necessarily something to be proud of. But I was damn good at it.” Seokjin said, he grinned, a little devilishly. “Money’s weird.”

“Yeah.” Jimin agreed, dumbly. Even if he was engaged in the process of constructing a new world, by understanding the flaws of the old, some aspects of unequal societies just inherently confused him. He supposed money was something he’d never really understand, without having lived in it.

They’d been stopped at the bottom of the lifts for a while, and Seokjin frowned, slamming against the panel again, for the elevator to come back. “God, hurry up...” he muttered, darkly.

“It’ll get here when it gets here.” Jimin said, lightly, leaning back against the wall.

“Sure, but I want to take my time eating.” Seokjin said, a little annoyed, “These conference shouldn’t make me feel like I’m at work, eating as quickly as possible so the bosses won’t penalize me.”

Jimin shrugged, lightly. He’d never been much of one to care about food. “It’s not like there’s a punishment. If you’re late, it’s a little rude, but nobody cares.”

Seokjin paused and stared at Jimin. “It’s your conference.”

Jimin smiled before realizing in horror what Seokjin was saying. Presenters arrived fifteen minutes early to try and set up. “Oh. Oh shit, yeah.” He straightened up and glared at the lift himself.

Luckily, the shaft shot down, instantly, and a bunch of people poured out, loud in conversation. Some were languages that Jimin, recognized, others he couldn’t even properly comprehend.

“--jelly wasn’t the right consistency--”

“--have left the planet earlier than you did, but--”

“--could have done without the unneeded pressure, Sir.”

Sir? Jimin frowned, as the person who’d spoken flipped the FARUC pass between their fingers slipped past him, addressing her honorific to the large, hulking person at her side.

Strange.

But Seokjin had already got into the lift, so Jimin quickly stumbled in after him, and pressed the button, so they could shoot up into the clouds, and didn’t think about it over much.