Jeongguk takes a deep breath through his nose, the first time he has felt this in months. The crisp, fresh air fills his lungs and he exhales slowly. His warm breath releases a cloud of fog into the cold air. He had been locked into isolation for too long this time, and he regrets it every time he’s put in there. He promises to behave himself from now on here, he was lucky that no time was added on to his sentence. But, that’s what he promises every time.
Park Jimin, ward officer. That’s what it said on his shiny, new name tag. Jimin has been in the police force for a few years and he needed a change. Something different. His wife had been nagging at him, that he wasn’t the same anymore, wasn’t the happy Jimin she married and fell in (love) with. It was hard to stay the same when you have a job that takes everything out of you, you sacrifice your happiness so that other people can be. Jimin sacrificed his happiness for his kids and his country. His kids are what mattered most to him, the only things that are still keeping him alive at this point. Jimin sighs and shakes his head, shunning his thoughts along with it, and fixes his name tag on to his shirt. Hyuna walks into the room, she tuts and walks up to Jimin and fixes his collar.
“Sorry, thanks.” Jimin breathes. When he looks at Hyuna, he feels endearment and comfort and he loves her. He does.
“Don’t be so nervous, you’re going to be fine. Crowd pleaser, remember?” She laughs, and Jimin is momentarily transported to his teenage years when he had danced on a table at a strip club in his drunken state. It was the only time he had ever done something crazy and had gotten so drunk, but Hyuna had watched it all.
They were childhood friends, growing up together because their families had been so close. The success and status of their families was beyond measurable, so it was inevitable that they would be forced into marriage together. Jimin knew they both never wanted it, but they still agreed because they were faithful, obedient children and always listened to their parents. Their parents knew best, after all. Jimin loves Hyuna, he really does, but he had only ever loved her as his best friend and confidant. She knew how gay he was because he had confided to her about all of his high school crushes and it was the same for Hyuna. But here they are, (happily) married with two beautiful kids and a good life. As long as they’re happy, Jimin has no problems.
They had both tried in the relationship for so long, but he knew it was burning out. When he looked at Hyuna, he could see how tired she was. Jimin wonders if the look in his eyes is the same.
“Papa, work?” The three-year-old was tugging on his trousers. Jimin couldn’t believe how fast his baby boy was growing up. Jimin picks Minwoo up and nuzzles his cheek, then he hears crying from the next room. That must be Jiwoo.
“Yes baby, papa is going to work today.” He coos, and hands him to Hyuna with a sloppy kiss so he can go check on his baby girl. Jimin gently picks her up and starts rocking her so that she calms down. She’s only a few months old but Jimin can’t bear it when she cries and she rarely does. He is so thankful that he has well behaved children, the both of them are the best things that have ever happened to him. She cuddles into Jimin, her small face pressed into his neck as her breathing starts to even out again, and she’s gone like a light. She only needed the comfort of her father to relax her again. He kisses her goodbye and puts her down again gently.
“Okay, I’m going. I’ll see you later.” Jimin picks up a piece of toast from the table, quickly pats Hyuna on her bum and cuddles Minwoo for the last time before he leaves for work.
“I love you, big guy.” He whispers in his ear when they cuddle.
“Love you, papa.” Jimin’s heart expands in his chest every time he hears those words and he can’t help his smile when he looks at him again.
“Chim?” Hyuna calls out. She hasn’t called him that in so long. She hasn’t called him anything in so long.
“Yeah?” He pops his head around the kitchen door again. She doesn’t look at him.
“I love you.” She says, continuing to make Minwoo’s porridge. Jimin’s heart clenches. He walks towards her and turns her around so they’re facing each other. His breath ghosts against her lips before he presses them lightly against hers, a featherweight across her lips. “I’ll always love you.” He whispers against her lips, with one last kiss on her forehead he forces himself to leave for work. On the way there, he cries about what their life has become. And there really isn’t much he can do about it.
“You seen the new ward officer?” Jeongguk was sat on the bench, alone, always listening in to conversations to be kept in the loop. It’s so that he knows who to look out for, you don’t make friends in prison.
“Yeah, that one with the fat ass? A beauty he is.” The elder man ran his tongue along his rotting teeth, and Jeongguk rolled his eyes in disgust. Sexual assault that man was in for.
“He maybe a sight, but you don’t mess with him. He already had one of the guys on the floor, it’s only his first day.”
“Let me guess? Jiho?” Jeongguk’s ears perked up at that.
“Probably, what a fucking idiot. He thinks with his dick, doesn’t use his goddamn brain- that’s why he’s in here.”
Jiho, unfortunately, was Jeongguk’s cell mate and he hopes that whoever this new officer was had put him in isolation because he couldn’t stand that fucking dickhead. He’d only been cellmates with him for a couple of months but it had felt like a lifetime. He was a middle-aged man with long hair and a disgusting mind. Being cellmates, Jeongguk had already been prey to his dirty intentions but there wasn’t anything he could do about it. He took it as it came and dealt with it. This place doesn’t sympathise, you can’t go running like a little bitch. He’d rather fucking die.
Jeongguk really didn’t want to be in here, he wasn’t supposed to be in here in the first place. But it’s where life had taken him and he had accepted his fate. When he was framed for dealing drugs by the only people who he thought cared about him, he knew he shouldn’t have been surprised. Not when he had spent all of his youth with them, not when he’d seen them do the exact same thing with others. Jeongguk was sent to prison at the age of 19 with barely any knowledge of how to deal with life or people. It’s best to say, that Jeongguk had learnt the hard way. And two years on, he had learnt how to keep his fucking mouth shut and keep to himself. But even that was hard in prison. You couldn’t just keep to yourself, not when you’re in with some of the most dangerous criminals in Seoul.
When Jeongguk walks in to the dining hall, it’s as loud as it usually is and he grabs a tray to fill up with his survival intake. He usually sits anywhere he can find unless someone wants something from him, which means he is summoned to the table of whoever wants him. You don’t say no, you never say no. Today just happens to be one of those days.
“Jeon boy!” Jeongguk hears it and suppresses the urge to sigh in irritation. He looks back at Kim Taehyung and nods his head before making his way to the table. Taehyung is one of the younger ones in here, just like Jeongguk, too pretty for this place he thinks. But Taehyung is bad, you don’t ever want to get involved with him at all. He will make your life hell, he’s seen it with his own eyes. He’s only ever bothered Jeongguk with mindless things, mindless to Kim Taehyung that is. A cigarette here and there, a blowjob to pass time, some choco balls if Jeongguk is lucky. Jeongguk agreed every time, of course he agrees, Jeongguk has a brain. Time passes by in mindless chatter over dinner until Taehyung is sidling up to him.
“I need a favour.” Jeongguk didn’t think it was possible for his voice to go any lower.
“I figured, what’s up?” Jeongguk says, continuing to shovel the slob of food into his mouth.
“See that fine specimen over there?” Taehyung cocks his head to where the ward officers were standing. Jeongguk’s eyes linger to the back of one of them he doesn’t recognise, looks at his ass and then everything is much clearer.
“New ward officer?” Jeongguk’s eyes linger, waiting for him to turn around so he can see his face.
“Mhm,” Taehyung hums, rubs his chin and he has a mischievous glint in his eyes. When the officer turns, Jeongguk’s breath almost hitches. Beautiful doesn’t cut it. What were people thinking sending someone like that in here, he’s going to get ripped to shreds. How stupid can people fucking get.
“Wow.” Jeongguk pretends to be disinterested and goes back to his food. He doesn’t know what Taehyung wants yet, he needs to be careful.
“You really are a dumb het,” Taehyung shakes his head, he doesn’t seem annoyed yet but Jeongguk really needs to watch it.
“Your reaction was fucking dumb, no one reacted like that. Can you not see him, he’s a fucking work of art, you fucking blind or something?”
“He’s pretty, why is he in here?” Jeongguk looks back at the officer and he’s even more startled. You don’t get pretty people like that in here, he’s going to get absolutely violated. Jeongguk is more than a little affected, a little breathless even. He scans over his face, jet black hair, pretty eyes, the high cheekbones and strong jawline, and sinful lips. He’s practically asking to be killed in here.
“Fuck if I know. All I know is that I want him. He’s mine and I’m going to have him whichever way I see fit.” Taehyung smirks, and Jeongguk already feels sorry for this officer. He won’t last longer than a month in here, he guarantees it.
“So what do you need from me?”
“Patience Jeon, I’m getting to it.” Taehyung rolls his eyes. “You’re gonna need to help me lure him in, I want him to wreck my ass. I bet he has a pretty dick, just like his face.” Jeongguk wants to roll his eyes at Taehyung, everything always resorts to sexual release with him. He has nothing else in his mind. In fact, none of these people have thoughts that aren’t sexual and Jeongguk is surrounded by fucking idiots. Fuck this shit.
“How can I help you?” Jeongguk laughs, Taehyung is ridiculous if he thinks Jeongguk can get that.
“You’re the only other pretty one in here, you fucker. Why else would I ask? Look at your baby face, everyone wants to fuck you up.” Taehyung flicks under his chin and Jeongguk scoffs at that, he really feels disgusting in here. “Imagine me and you put together, we’d get anyone on their knees. We could get this Park Jimin to his knees, I bet.”
“I doubt it, I heard he’s good at what he does.”
“Oh yeah, he’s very good at what he does. If I didn’t know any better, I’d be shit scared of him. But I know better, and I’m having him.” Taehyung smiles a toothy grin, his tattooed finger in between his teeth. “When I call, you come.” Taehyung stands and leaves. Jeongguk doesn’t reply because he doesn’t have a choice. When Taehyung calls for him, he will go. If he wants to live. Jeongguk looks back at Park Jimin, he would like him to survive in this place but he thinks that it’s highly unlikely. He finishes his food alone and when he leaves his eyes linger on the officer, they make brief eye contact and he gives him such a stern stare that Jeongguk’s heart skips a little. Yeah, this is definitely going to be tough.
A week passes by without any inconvenience, and this is very unlike Taehyung. Normally, when Taehyung wants he gets instantly so he must’ve forgotten. Must have. From what Jeongguk has seen so far of Park Jimin, he doesn’t take things lightly and he does his job well. Hard working. He puts people in their places and doesn’t let anyone walk all over him. Maybe he will stand a chance, Jeongguk wants someone like him around because he seems like the only one in this place with his head screwed on.
Of course with someone like that, Jeongguk is attracted to him, but everyone is. Someone with brains as well as good looks? Yeah, he would like someone like that. Jeongguk likes pretty things, he wants things he knows he can’t have. This Park Jimin, will be the end of him, he thinks.
Jeongguk knows he stares, Jimin notices when he does and he holds eye contact until Jeongguk looks away, never backing down. Jeongguk likes that. They’ve never spoken but there’s already a weird sort of tension between them, or maybe Jimin looks at everyone like that and Jeongguk just thinks he’s lucky. Either way, Jimin is going to get him in a lot of trouble.
Jeongguk is on kitchen duty today, and he doesn’t mind this. Doesn’t mind washing all the dishes and cleaning up, it calms him. Distracts him from his hideous thoughts. It refreshes him. Jeongguk stays to clean up until he’s the last in there, wiping down the surfaces with a dirty, mildew-ridden rag. When he hears footsteps behind him, he knows it’s a ward officer getting him to hurry up.
“Nearly done officer, just these last ones to go.” Jeongguk blindly speaks, getting the last of the dishes to put away.
“Good, I’d like to go home today.” He hears a sweet voice, and he doesn’t even need to turn to know it’s Park Jimin. A sweet voice to match his sweet face. Jeongguk doesn’t turn to look, he knows he’ll lose focus.
“Lucky for some, hey?” Jeongguk snorts.
“Lucky I abide by state laws?” Jimin retorts. Feisty and quick, Jeongguk smiles at that.
“Lucky you have a home.” Jimin doesn’t reply to that and Jeongguk feels smug about it, he thinks he might have left but when he turns around Jimin is still standing there. The same stern look in his eyes, void of any emotion. Up closer, he looked younger. He couldn’t be any older than Jeongguk himself. He had tiny wrinkles at the corners of his eyes and Jeongguk wonders what he would look like if he smiled. “All done.” Jeongguk smiles, wiping his hands on a tea towel. They stare each other down and Jeongguk can feel the tension from where he stands, but the weird thing about it is that he doesn't hate it. He loves the way Jimin looks at him, the harsh look in his eye should make him feel intimidated but all it does is make him a little hard.
"Do you always stare at everyone?" Jimin's voice is so crisp and to the point, he wonders if he thinks about ten times before he speaks.
"Not everyone, I just like to look at pretty things." Jeongguk resists the urge to wink at him because he knows it won't bode well, he smirks anyway.
“Get out of here.” Jimin almost snarls.
“Yes sir.” Jeongguk clenches his jaw and makes his way out of the kitchen, making sure to shove past his shoulder. He doesn't know where he got the balls to do that, but he's glad he did. Jimin smelt good, something like orange blossom. It reminded him of his candle collection before he went into prison, Namjoon had bought him such an expensive one for his 18th birthday all the way from London and Jimin smelt like that exact same scent. It was comforting, smelt like home. It made him a little envious too, because Jeongguk loved scented things but it wasn't allowed in prisons.
Jeongguk is lucky Jimin hadn't called him back because of the shove, if it wasn't the end of the day he probably would have but he probably doesn't want to deal with anything right now if he wanted to get home. He was so damn aggressive all of the time, but he guesses you had to be in a place like this. You could trust no one. When Jeongguk gets back to his cell, he has a note waiting for him under his pillow.
‘Piss him off.’
It's signed off with a V and Jeongguk knows it's from Kim Taehyung. Jeongguk has no idea what he’s getting himself into.
Jimin is exhausted. What made him think that he’d be good at working in a men’s prison full of disgusting inmates who claw at him like he’s a piece of meat? Jimin doesn’t care, he will persist and prove that he’s good at his job. Despite everything, he doesn’t think he’s doing too bad. Especially after everyone else has commended him for being so ignorant to the comments and actions of the inmates, but he’s had to go through it in some form all his life. It doesn’t bother him anymore.
"You look more tired." Hyuna mumbles as he gets into bed late that night.
"I feel it, it's tough work." Jimin's eyes are already shutting as his head hits the pillow.
"I don't know why you do this to yourself," she whispers in the dark.
"You know why." When she doesn't respond Jimin speaks quietly. "It may not seem like it but I do enjoy it."
"Do you?" she questions, there's a foot separating them in bed and he can't remember the last time they had been close.
"Not now, Hyuna." Jimin rubs his eyes, he shifts and lays back so he won't have to look at her in the moonlit room.
"Jimin, you can do it. You can leave, I wouldn't even be mad. You can follow your heart, do all the things you've dreamed of it's not too late."
"Yeah? And where are my kids going to fit in to that, where are you going to fit into that? What about my parents? Your parents?"
"I love our kids with my everything, I'll look after them you don't have t-"
"You think I don't love my kids? You think I'm just going to leave them for some stupid fantasy of mine? You're fucking kidding me," Jimin sits up, he's ready to turn this into a full-blown argument.
"I didn't say that, I just want you to be happy." her voice is the same tone and she just looks tired. So tired. She holds out her hand to him and Jimin doesn't hesitate to grasp it in his.
"Hyuna, we both had dreams that we sacrificed for our parents and now for our kids. This is our choice and I'm sticking with it. I love them too much to even think of doing anything else, but you. You deserve to be happy too," Jimin's breath hitches in his throat and he wants to cry. He blames himself for the way life has turned out for them both. If he had just grown up and put a stop to it before it had gotten too far then maybe they both would have been happy. But they have kids now, and they're too young to understand but he doesn't want his kids exposed to this. He wants the best for them, wants to give them the happiest lives and watch them grow into beautiful people. He would do anything for them and if that meant he wasn't happy in himself then he didn't care. He would give it up for them.
"You don't love me." Hyuna whispers and Jimin almost doesn't catch it. "I know you don't want this."
"P-please don't say that," Jimin's lip trembles and he has to get a hold of himself. He loves her and he doesn't want her to think otherwise.
"I didn't mean it like that, you don't love me as your wife and it- it's hard, Jimin."
"I'm sorry, baby." Jimin instinctively moves towards her and envelopes her in his arms. He doesn't have to hear her to know that she's crying and it breaks his heart. This is all his fault, he has hurt his best friend, his wife, the mother of his children and he feels guilt course through his veins. This wasn't how it was supposed to go.
The next day, at work, Jimin is in a foul mood and it seems like everyone is angering him on purpose. They're out to get him today. He's already called out two inmates, he's being ruthless and he knows it. He has to be careful though, he doesn't want them to hate him, he just wants them scared enough to be wary of him. Wants them to know that he won't be taking any shit. During his midday break, he steps out into the courtyard for some fresh air and a well-deserved smoke. He doesn't expect inmates to still be out here so he tries to hide his startled expression when he sees two of them walking towards the shed where he's leaning. He continues to smoke, an unbothered expression on his face.
"Pretty sure you're not allowed to be doing that here, officer." one of them smirks at him, they both look familiar. He recognises the other boy as the cute, quiet one who always stares at him. He certainly looked like he shouldn't be in here and Jimin wonders what he did to end up here. Sometimes, the most innocent looking people can be capable of doing the deadliest of crimes. He blinks at Jimin and stares with his round doe eyes, as usual. Very cute.
"I do it because I know you can't." Jimin's voice tone is dead, and he looks away from them both. They look pretty close.
"How thoughtful of you, you seem like the caring type." the loud mouth flutters his eyelashes and Jimin rolls his eyes. "I'm Kim Taehyung, if you were wondering." This Kim Taehyung is stepping up to him and has his hand on his chest pushing him against the railing. There's no doubt he looks like a fucking model, and his cocky demeanour tells him that he knows it too.
"Get your goddamn hands off of me, inmate." Jimin spits, allowing him to step away before he gets riled up. He's taller than Jimin so he's towering and that pisses Jimin off even more.
"Aww you're no fun," he has a pout on his lips and Jimin knows it's all for show. He wants to beat the shit out of this guy, his smirk making anger rage inside of him. "Do you know how lucky you are now that you've had my hands on you?" he steps away so that they're not touching but he's still close and Jimin just wants to shove him away.
"Get back inside, don't make me repeat myself." He just wanted a fucking minute to himself. Taehyung moves to stand beside him and the other boy follows, so they're all lined up against the shed. Jimin closes his eyes in annoyance, this guy wants to be difficult. He reminds himself not to play into their games.
"We should get to know each other a little, Jeonggukie here is a little shy but we can make it work, right?" his eyebrow raises in question and Jimin just wants to hit him. Did he say Jeonggukie? What kind of a name is that?
"Fucking fuck off." Jeonggukie mumbles, and he has to suppress a laugh. He looks like an angry bunny rabbit.
"Get the fuck inside. Now." Jimin's voice goes lower, but Taehyung is still smirking at him.
"God, you're such a prissy little bitch, we're fucking going." Taehyung moves to go, mumbling something like 'just 'cos you're thick and pretty you think you get to order us around' under his breath. Jeongguk is still standing there, and Jimin looks at him expectantly.
"You don't want to mess with Kim Taehyung." he whispers, and Jimin is taken aback. He didn't expect that coming out of his mouth, but he's already gone before Jimin can say anything to them. He doesn't want to mess with either of them. Jeonggukie, what kind of fucking name?
"What was all that about?" Jisoo is joining him, with a cigarette balanced in his fingers waiting for Jimin to light it for him.
"Fucking inmates playing stupid games." Jimin lights it for him and they both lean back enjoying a few minutes of peace and quiet.
"You're doing well, don't give up just yet you look like you're going to." he snickers.
"I'm not, they just fucking piss me the fuck off." Jimin sighs, crushes the stub under his foot. Jisoo was one of the good officers, he'd even consider him a friend at this point and they got along well enough unlike the other shitty bastards in here. Jisoo is laughing at him, shaking his head.
"You'll survive, just don't play into their games. Don't let them get you where they want you to be, the lot of them are fucking sick in the head."
"I know, fucking pricks." The conversation ends there, Jimin knows these are some of the most dangerous men in the world and he just has the pleasure of keeping an eye on them. He just needs to be extremely careful.
That same night, he was working the night shift. He hadn't worked a night shift before and he hoped it would be a lot better than working in the day, especially if all the inmates were sleeping. He made a mental note to ask for more night shifts so he'd get harassed less, that way he could spend more time with his children too.
"You think night shifts would be easier but they drain you out, I'm glad I get a break from them." Hyunwoo cracks his neck as they swap over for their shifts.
"Thanks for the heads up." Jimin's voice oozes sarcasm and Hyunwoo gives him a sympathetic look.
"They're better than the day shifts." He whispers and pats him on the back before heading out. Jimin finishes up his dinner of spinach salad and grilled chicken, part of his diet that he has to stick to and gets ready for his shift.
"Park Jimin?" he hears the correctional officer behind him and he turns and bows at him.
"Please come into my office before your shift starts, I have something I need to talk about." Jimin's heart beat increases and he thinks of everything he has done for the past three weeks, what has he done wrong? Cho Soon sits at his desk, scribbling on a piece of paper. "Please sit." he gestures to the chair in front of him and Jimin takes the seat.
"I'm just going to get straight to it, I have spoken to Kim Jisoo already about this and he tells me that you're one to be trusted. We're being put under review, the practices and rules of this prison are going to be smashed on, and I can't afford to let these big fucking dogs do this. I trust Jisoo, and now you to make sure this place runs smoothly whilst they're here. Make sure they know there are no problems, and you and I both know that there's a fuck ton of shit wrong with this place."
Jimin is taken aback, were there really no decent people around here. Did anyone even know what the fuck they were doing? Nevertheless, he's glad he is in the good books of the correctional officer, it'll be handy for him and he has to thank Jisoo for that.
"Yes sir, I'll try my best." Jimin nods, and feels sympathetic towards his crestfallen expression.
"You're good, Park. Just remember that they're still human too." Jimin ponders over that for a while, long after he was dismissed from the office.
He sits at his desk in the middle of the cells with the other ward officer on duty, mindlessly munching on his damn almonds. The inmates are fucking loud even though they're supposed to be sleeping, he knows more stuff goes on in here that shouldn't and he needs to be the one preventing it. The snores are loud and some of them refuse to sleep, singing loudly or trying to speak to other inmates across the hall. He gets up determined to shut the fuckers up, his baton ready in his hand. He goes to the idiot that's singing his lungs out, it would not have been bad if he had been remotely good.
"I think it's time to shut the fuck up." Jimin taps his baton against the cell, the inmate grunts and gets into his designated bed with a huff. Jimin walks away satisified, giving the same treatment to those who hadn't slept yet. He looks at the time and it's only midnight yet he feels like he's been there the whole night. He still has such a long time to go. He does regular rounds around all the cells, being as quiet as possible, making sure there's nothing going on inside that shouldn't be. He has a duty of care after all. He stops when he hears it, it's coming from a few cells down. An impossibly quiet whine that Jimin picks up on, he thought it was his imagination until he hears it again. He makes his way towards the cell and makes sure he gets his defences up, gets ready to fuck someone up.
"Shh babyface, you're going to get fat ass over here." he hears it being whispered and he switches on his torch so he can look into the cell. He finds an inmate with his hand under the blanket of the inmate sleeping on the top bunk. When the light shines in his face, he whips his hand out and stumbles back. Fucking disgusting.
"Get the fuck in to your own bed." he growls, he wants to get this guy out of here but he forces himself to calm down and be logical. These people weren't humans, they were animals.
"Fucking dick." he mutters under his breath before he scrambles up and into his own bed on the lower bunk. He shines the light at the top bunk and is surprised to see that Jeonggukie guy, still fast asleep, a frown marring his features from when he was being manhandled and anger is coursing through his veins. Motherfucking low life.
"You're done." He spits, before he forces himself to walk away. He won't tolerate rape or sexual abuse and he'll do everything he can to make sure it doesn't happen. The words from the commission officer rings in his ears, they are human after all. So when his shift is nearing its end and the inmates are waking up, he keeps an eye on this particular inmate and watches his every move. When they lock eyes, he gives Jimin a dirty smile.
"Looks like you wanted to be in on the fun last night," Jimin doesn't hesitate to pounce on him, all his patience gone and he frames him, gets his arm behind his back and puts enough pressure to hear a few bones snapping. Jimin makes out as if he had laid hands on him and gets him locked away from here. As much as he's glad he could do that, he doesn't feel the satisfaction he thought he would. He knows that this is just one person out of possibly hundreds in here and that makes him feel sick to his stomach. He leaves his shift with a heavy heart, something stuck in his throat. They're still human, he reminds himself. Just because they're prisoners it doesn't make them unable to be the victims.
Jimin wasn't a prissy little bitch. Jeongguk finds that out first hand when he comes out of his cell to see what all the commotion was about. Jimin has his cellmate on the floor, hands behind his back and the dick is screaming out in pain, it looks like Jimin's broke something of his, it looks like his arm.
"Don't you dare fucking lay your filthy hands on me ever again, understand?" he spits in his ear, he receives a strangled cry in response and then he is being cuffed and taken away by officers. Thank fucking god. He can sleep peacefully for a while without his cellmates dirty wandering hands. Jimin is telling everyone to go back into their cell and his eyes lock on to Jeongguk's for a moment. There was no stern stare this time, just a blank stare, and it made Jeongguk feel a little uneasy. Like he knew something. He turns away and goes back into his cell and rejoices in the comfort of having the room to himself. Little things.
He doesn't have it for very long because Kim Taehyung is walking in and slaps him on the back of his head. Jeongguk is already sick of his face.
"Well, Jimin got rid of Jiho, huh?" Taehyung's tone is teasing.
"Yeah, guess so." Jeongguk wants him gone, he just wants to be by himself for a minute.
"You should look more excited about it,"
"What are you talking about?"
"Don't play stupid, everyone knows what goes on in here. I can hear your bitchy little sounds from my fucking cell."
"Did you want something or?"
"Yeah, I want Park Jimin."
"You're not going to get him, just give it up."
"I don't give up." he looks at Jeongguk with a determined gaze, and Jeongguk sighs tiredly. It has even started yet, Jeongguk knows this, but he is sick of it. "Anyway, I heard he's married. He wears a ring, what a lucky bitch. And he's my age, why the fuck is he married so young?" Taehyung continues. Married? There's not a chance and he doesn't hesitate to tell him that.
"You've got no chance then,"
"Like fuck I have, do you want me to prove it to you Jeon boy. You really wanna challenge me?" Taehyung always turns everything into a competition and it annoys the hell out of him.
"Fuck off, he won't give in and you know it."
"We're doing this, and then I'm going to make you watch it. I bet he'd love that." Taehyung licks his lips and Jeongguk shudders. He is beyond disgusted. Jeongguk turns away from him and closes his eyes, he feels like he's never going to get out of here. He can't wait for the day he's finally free. Only two more years. Also, he misses Namjoon hyung.
Jimin's time passes by slowly but eventful at the prison to say the least, and before he knows it he's already been working there for three months. Jimin doesn't get bored, the prison is a very lively place and every day is different. He's just tired. It does get better though, he's made a name for himself and he has a feeling the inmates are wary of him. They know not to get on the wrong side of him and have enough respect for him that they don't challenge him. He's proud of himself for standing his ground, he knows he doesn't have strict features and his height doesn't help when he's trying to intimidate an inmate that's three feet taller than him but he's done good. He fits in.
When he walks into the kitchen that evening, he already knows to expect Jeonggukie to be the last in there and he's not even surprised.
"Why are you always the last in here?" Jimin has his guard down, there's something about speaking to him that just makes it irrelevant to be as stern as he usually is. Maybe it's his age.
"I like cleaning." he doesn't turn to look at Jimin and continues to clear up. Jimin hikes himself on to the worktop and he makes a sound when he sits and waits for him to finish, he grabs an apple from the fruit bowl and bites into it. He's long over rushing him to hurry up because he takes his time anyway, not the slightest bit phased by Jimin's nagging to hurry up. So, he just sits and watches him until he's done. His back is straighter than it usually is and it looks like he's very aware that Jimin is watching him.
"Is Jeonggukie your real name?" Jimin's voice sounds weird, and he kicks himself for even letting it slip out. He can't get to know prisoners, it's unprofessional.
"What?" Jeonggukie turns to look at him, with a weird smirk on his face. He makes a sound, like he's suppressing a laugh and Jimin feels self conscious.
"Jeonggukie? That's your name?" he asks again.
"So what if it is? Is there a problem?" He can see his shoulders moving and knows he's laughing, why is he laughing?
"There isn't, it's just a weird name. Sounds like cookie." he mumbles the last bit, he's showing too much of himself to this boy and he needs to reign it in.
"I taste as delightful as one." he turns his head and winks at Jimin, and Jimin doesn't know where to look. There's a strange flutter in his chest and this boy looks so small, too young to be in a place like this.
"I'm sure you do. Come on, get out of here I wan-" Jimin hops off the worktop.
"You want to get home, I know." Jeonggukie shakes his head. "It must be nice."
"It's okay." his voice is small, and he waits while Jeonggukie hangs the cloths to dry.
"That sounds so convincing," he rolls his eyes "when I get out of here, I'm gonna get a job then I'm gonna get a home for myself." those words don't usually come from a prisoner.
"How long?" Jimin is surprised at how forward Jeonggukie is being, he's usually so quiet and they've never spoken more than a few words. He assumes this is a rarity for him, he's usually so closed off from everyone, from everything. He's never involved in any of the drama.
"Two years," he smiles. "It seems so far away."
"It'll come before you even know it. You've never had a home?"
"A bit personal, officer?" Jeonggukie asks, a cheeky glint in his eye.
"Sorry, I- sorry." Jimin's cheeks flush red at his prying and he wants to bury himself alive. Jeonggukie is getting under his skin and he doesn't know if he likes that. He can't make friends in here, he's a prisoner for god's sake.
"I'm just kidding, but no to answer your question, not really- wait, why are your cheeks like that? Why are they so red? Are you blushing?" Jeonggukie's eyes widen when he looks at Jimin before his gaze turns amused.
"The fuck? I'm not fucking blushing, what the fuck? I'm just fucking embarrassed, fucking stop that," Jimin turns so Jeonggukie can't see his face and he hears him continue to laugh. A very cute laugh he notes.
"Look at your fucking cheeks, that's the cutest shit I've ever seen, my god." Jeongguk is laughing but Jimin is frustrated. It only makes him go redder, his stomach churning.
"Shut the fuck up and get out of here." he doesn't dare to turn back around but when Jeongguk leans into his space from behind him, his breath hitches and he's ready to attack him if necessary. His hand moves to his baton attached to his trousers, just in case.
"By the way, my name is Jeon Jeongguk." he whispers in his ear, and Jimin clutches the worktop, his heartbeat out of control. Oh. Ohhhh. This Jeon fucking guy just made him look like a goddamn fool, and no one makes him look like a fool. He's going to die in this place. "You'd do well to remember it." Jeongguk takes a deep breath through his nose and Jimin can feel it.
"Get out of here, inmate." he replies, and then Jeongguk is gone with a laugh to mock Jimin as he's walking out. Jimin deflates and breathes again, he won't be making the same mistake again. He's sure of it.
Jimin is avoiding Jeongguk, he knows it because he hasn't seen him for days. Not even when he's working in the kitchen which he was hoping would be the day he saw him again. Jeongguk knew he had let his guard down the other day, they both had and for Jimin, Jeongguk's teasing had only made it worse but so worth it. To see him look and speak like that was refreshing, like they were just friends and it made him forget that he was stuck in a prison. Even if it was just for fifteen minutes. Jeongguk never spoke to anyone like that in here, he didn't trust anyone enough. Namjoon hyung was the only one he spoke to about anything. But one look into Jimin's eyes and he was rattling away. He was more than surprised at himself for giving so much away but his eyes were so inviting, he was sucked into the enigma that was Park Jimin. Jeongguk was sure that Jimin had let himself go, too, because Jeongguk knew that he wasn't nearly as tough as he made himself out to be. He had a feeling Jimin hated that he revealed that side of him to Jeongguk of all people.
Jeongguk thinks that he's been taking the night shifts and so Jeongguk has a plan. It will probably get him into a lot of trouble and expose his ass a little bit, but he's willing to risk it if he gets to see Park Jimin. A small voice in the back of his head tells him to be wary of Kim Taehyung, but he forgets about all of that as soon as the cells are locked and the lights are turned off. Jeongguk keeps his lamp on. He hears officers making their rounds around the cells a couple of times, hoping that Jimin would come by at some point but Jeongguk is left disappointed. It's weirdly quiet, ever since Jimin had started doing the nights shifts everyone just shuts the fuck up. He does his job well, that's for sure. A lot of the guys are intimidated by him, but Jeongguk knows better. Jeongguk wants to think he knows Jimin a little better but that's just wishful thinking. He's way too hard to figure out.
Jeongguk assumes it's really late when he decides that Jimin is not doing the rounds, that's when he chooses to take action. He takes a deep breath, and in his most purposeful hideous voice he starts to sing the lyrics to that stupid rock song that Namjoon hyung used to play to annoy him. Was it Linkin Park? He doesn't know but he does it anyway. It takes all of about ten seconds before he can hear complaining, other inmates shouting at him to shut the fuck up. No one will even know that it's him, his voice completely different to how he speaks and it's something that is unlike Jeongguk. No one will know. No one except the officer who is coming towards his cell. His hands grab the rails and rattles them as he gets even louder, wanting to piss the officer off. What if Jimin wasn't even working today, he would look like a goddamn idiot.
"What the fuck do you think you're doing?" Jimin is standing in front of him and he rejoices in his relief that he's the one standing in front of him. He shuts up immediately and smirks at him. The light from his lamp illuminates Jimin's face only a little, but it's enough to see that something is wrong. His eyes are cold and he has dark eye bags and he looks paler than usual.
"Hey sweet cheeks, haven't seen you in a while." Jeongguk seems to think at the last minute that this is probably the wrong time to do this but it's too late. His words are already out. But Jeongguk can see the pale pink blush on Jimin's cheeks, he's flustered.
"Will you keep it the fuck down," Jimin hisses, as he looks to his side to make sure no one could see or hear them. "What are you doing?"
"I'm bored." Jeongguk shrugs, and presses his face into the railing so that he's closer to Jimin. There's definitely something wrong and it's weird how Jeongguk notices.
"Not my fucking problem." Jimin harshly whispers, before he takes a step back to put some space in between them.
"Keep me company?" Jeongguk tilts his head, but he knows that it's a ridiculous request. You don't ever see a prisoner and ward officer casually hanging out.
"Do you want to die? Get the fuck to sleep." Jimin scoffs at him, shakes his head.
"Jimin?" Jeongguk's voice drops a tone lower, his voice soft when he says his name.
"What?" Jimin runs his hand through his hair in frustration, Jeongguk's stomach flutters. Wait, does Jeongguk like him? Why is his mind spinning and heart fluttering like that? He's almost...nervous.
"Your eyes- you- there's something wrong." Jeongguk chokes as he says the words. Nervous about showing any concern, nervous that Jimin might be able to see right through him and read his mind. There's just something about Jimin that has him intrigued in more ways than one.
"It's none of your business, go to sleep." Jeongguk feels it in his chest, but he brushes it off and lets Jimin walk away. He slumps into his bunk and tries to shake the feeling of concern from him. He's not supposed to feel like this about a ward officer. He just thought that it was different, he thought they were beginning to be friends at least. Whatever. Jeongguk's plan had worked at the very least, and he got to see Jimin. He stays quiet enough so that he can hear the officers muttering between themselves.
"You're good, Park." he hears the slap on the back.
"Someone needed to shut the fucker up. Fucking wasting my time." he can vaguely hear Jimin grunting the words out. Jeongguk knows it shouldn't mean anything, but he still feels it in his chest. Tears still prick at his eyes, and he has to laugh at himself for being so ridiculous. Fuck Park Jimin for affecting him like this.
What he doesn't realise is that Kim Taehyung is wide awake in the cell across the hall from him, and he had just watched the whole ordeal take place.