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Mugunghwa - A Flower in Moonlight's Path

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“Omma is ill, this may possibly be her last summer as well, Jiminie. I asked you to come see me so I can ask a favor of you.”

Park Jimin sits, mouth wide in surprise, across from his best friend, Park Seokjin, and watches as the latter pulls out a small glass vial from his hanbok belt.

Jimin and Seokjin are omegas, both not from this area, the prestigious East, but for the last three years, they’ve been attending school here and have become the best of friends. Jimin is from the Park Clan of the west where his father leads an impressive army and Park Seokjin is from the South where his family is of a scholarly background.

This is their last year in school before they have to head back home and Seokjin’s mother had fallen ill, coming from the south to stay with him here with his younger brother, also named Park Jimin.

And this brother, is the one that is causing a mess. Seokjin’s brother Jimin had signed up to join the annual Alpha Training camp that is scheduled to start in a few days. The 6-week long training camp is highly coveted and revered as it is established by the King and trained by his best warriors. Not all alphas that sign up get the honor to go but when one does, only death or serious illness can pull one out. Otherwise, dishonor will blacken the family’s name.

The problem here is that Jin’s brother Jimin had irresponsibly ran off to join his friends on a voyage across the seas and cannot be found to come serve his duty - a duty he had chosen to sign up for.

“I’m going to go in as my brother to serve for his time in the training camp.”

“Seokjinie, you can’t!” Jimin gasps at the declaration from his friend. “That camp is for alphas only and you’re an omega. How-“

“I went to see the witch healer, Min Yoongi, and paid him to make me a potion.” Seokjin holds up the vial. “I just need to sprinkle it into my tea and drink it. The spell will mask my omega scent and emanate a strong masculine one in its stead. It will keep the alphas from really guessing what I really am.”

“Oh my god. Seokjinie, you can’t be serious. You know any kind of communication with witch doctors call for beheading! And...What about your mom?”

“I know, I know, Jiminie. And omma...That’s why I asked you here, dear friend. Please take care of her, watch over her. I’m praying that she holds on long enough for me to get out of this camp, at the very least.”

Jimin watches as Jin wipes at his watery eyes. His heart hurts for his friend, knowing how much Jin loves his mother and his reckless younger brother as well.

A soft knock resounds on the wood door to their room before it slides open. Jin nudges the teapot over to cover the small vial on the table as a servant bows to them before announcing that Seokjin’s mother is calling for him. Jin nods back in acknowledgement.

“I’ll be back, Jiminie, I need to give her her medicine.”

Jimin watches Jin leave, his mind whirling and reeling with thoughts over Jin’s dilemma. He doesn’t mind watching over Jin’s omma, but Jin should be here with her, especially in her rough times. He knows he would never leave his own omma should she be so deathly ill. To not be there when a parent is sick or could be passing on is just unthinkable to Jimin, an omega who loves his parents fiercely.

He looks at the vial on the table and an idea begins to form. Before he can talk himself out of it, Jimin’s picks up the potion, uncaps it, and pours it into his own cup of tea before hurriedly downing it.

He’s just putting his cup down when Seokjin returns back to his seat across from him.

Jin sits and rearranges the bottom of his hanbok and sighs before his eyes catch on the open vial and then his mouth drops open, eyes shooting up to meet with his best friend’s.

“Park Jimin, what did you just do?”

“I’m not going to take care of your mother, Seokjinie. She needs you now more than ever. You’ll never forgive yourself if you go and she passes and you’re not there. I came up with a solution that will work. Your brother is named Park Jimin, so am I. I’ll go. I’ll take his place in the camp.”

“Oh...oh, no, Jimin...you can’t! I-“

“I can. I will. Don’t worry about me.”

“Oh...Jimin. You can’t! You’re too pretty to be-“

“Well you are too!”

Seokjin pauses. “Well, you’re right. But still! At least I’m taller and a lot broader! You’re so... tiny and small and everything about you screams omega and oh my god, how can I even let you do this-“

“You didn’t. I choose to do so myself. I already drank the potion.”

“Jimin...God. This potion-Yoongi told me that it’s not 100% effective. You can’t get your whole body wet or it will wear off for two hours afterwards and your omega scent will emerge.”

Jimin nods. “Ok. So no bathing. Shouldn’t be too hard.”

“Jimin. Why?”

“You’re my best friend, Seokjin. You’ve saved my ass plenty of times in school as well. I know you’d do this for me should the situation be reversed.”

Seokjin smiles tremulously through another wave of tears. He’s worried but Jimin had sealed their fates by drinking all of the potion. He sees Jimin stand up and walk over to sit beside him before enveloping him in his small arms.

“Jiminie, there’s a rosebush outside the gates of the camp. Do me a favor and tie a string or ribbon out there twice a week to let me know you are doing okay in the compound.”

Jimin nods and pats his friend’s back.

--

 

Jeon Jungkook of the Jeon Pack of the North steps off his horse, Thunder, and takes the tethers in his hands. Next to him, his friends and fellow pack members Kim Namjoon and Kim Taehyung do the same.

They’ve finally made it to the East.

As they hand off the reins of their horses to the stable hands and walk inside the gated compound, they catch the attention of other alphas around, alphas who know exactly who they are.

Jungkook’s pack is famous amongst the wolves, having a great big army and very skilled alpha warriors, having won many territory wars and conflicts. Every alpha knows of Jungkook, his victories, his honor, his impending duty of taking over his pack in the near future.

Jungkook may be young but he’s strong, smart and fearless.

“Oh my God! A pretty daisy!”

Jungkook cannot help the smirk on his face as his childhood friend, physically imposing alpha Kim Taehyung, screams out happily and runs off to pluck the flower from the ground.

“Formation. NOW!”

Jimin pulls his hooded cloak closer to him, giddy with excitement but also with nerves as an older alpha trainer with heavy armory gear bellows out the order.

The group of twenty men, all alphas with an omega in disguise, hurriedly line up in a horizontal formation of 5 lines of four, facing the front where the trainer stands. Jimin tries to straighten up his shoulders and widen his stance. He’s the smallest one here, both in stature and weight. Everyone around him looks so menacing and intimidating and alpha so he pep talks himself and puffs out his chest as much as possible without being too obvious.

“Welcome to the camp. I am Lieutenant Kang Dongwan, your main instructor for the physical aspects of camp. I served as Lieutenant under Jeon Pack of the North and now for the King…”

Jimin, hidden in the back row, spaces out as he notices a pretty daisy flower tucked into the belt of the tall male beside him.

“It’s pretty, isn’t it?”

He hears the whisper and nods, smiling before looking upwards into the other smiling face.

It’s a pretty, friendly face, a boxy smile with charming eyes and long white hair to his shoulders. He’s also tall and broad, but rather than intimidating, he gives off a happy vibe. Jimin decides to like him right off.

“...The evening is closing in, we will now select roommates. There will be 4 people to every cabin. Beginning from the right, every 3rd person in line, come up here.”

Jimin snaps his head to the front again as the designated people in line walk up to the front. His eyes flitter over the select 5 males as they stand at rapt attention, hands behind their backs, stern faces on.

They’re all strong and buff, emanating alpha appeal and alpha stenches. His gaze stops on the one with a black bandanna around his head, broad shoulders, tall height, jet black hair, dark as night eyes. Jimin silently clicks his tongue. He’d be a handsome alpha if he learned to smile, Jimin thinks. Even still, Jimin reckons him as the most handsome of the five up there. Possibly of them all here, maybe except for the flower alpha next to him.

They are next given orders to choose their roommates and Jimin gulps. He hates this. He already knows he is going to be last. He watches, hands clenching nervously as everyone gets picked, even the pretty alpha boy next to him. Jimin is surprised to see that the flower boy is friends with night-eyes alpha as they knock fists with one another. Now, only the leftovers, the weakest looking ones or the ones with no friends are left in line. Sadly for Jimin, he fits into both categories perfectly.

He huffs out a breath through his nose and tilts his chin up high, deciding to go down with pride.

Bandanna boy gets to choose first this round and Jimin sees flower boy lean over and whisper something into his ears. Jimin sure as hell hope they aren’t laughing at him because he has good aim with a slingshot.

Jungkook stares at Taehyung after he whispers who to pick into his ears.

Him? The tiny runt with the blonde hair? He looks like a small gust of wind could blow him over. Jungkook has never seen such a small alpha in his life.

Taehyung nudges him in the shoulder and Jungkook gives in with a roll of his eyes.

“You.” He points to the runt whose eyes widen comically. And then he’s smiling hard, eyes disappearing, cheeks flushing as he scurries over.

Jungkook has never seen a pretty alpha. Until now. And that oddly irritates him. What in the world.

Beside him, Taehyung claps and offers his daisy to the newbie, who excitedly accepts and beams even more if possible. Jungkook shakes his head. Great, two of a pair. His patience with Taehyung is already shot, now he’s got another one to contend with for the next few weeks. Wonderful.

“Head to your cabins and settle in. The riverbed to bathe in is to the south, quarter mile walk. Get familiar with your surroundings, training starts tomorrow 5 am. Good evening, boys.” Lt. Dongwan turns around and leaves the grounds.

They are dismissed.

Jimin tucks the daisy from his new, boxy-smile friend behind his ears.

“Hi. I’m Park Jimin,” he offers a little shyly.

“Kim Taehyung. Oh, you are the cutest, most tiny little alpha. I’m so tempted to tuck you into my pocket and carry you around, cutie.” He reaches down and pinches Jimin’s cheeks.

Jimin giggles cutely back, making Taehyung coo even more.

“This here is Kim Namjoon, the smartest alpha in the world.”

Jimin grins up at the tall alpha next to Taehyung who inclines his head and smiles slightly back.

“Oh! Dimples!” Jimin likes them.

“Yes, that's his nickname. And over here, we have our fearless leader, Jeon Jungkook.”

Jimin’s eyes skirt over to the quiet, intimidating alpha, bowing and offering his sunniest smile.

He gets a whole up and down look, complete with a grunt back in return before the alpha turns and stalks off into the direction of the cabins.

Jimin turns to Taehyung, a questioning look in his eyes.

Tae beams back at him, wrapping an arm around his slim shoulders and leading him after Jungkook.

“That grunt was Jeon Jungkook talk for ‘you’re so cute I can hardly stand it’.”

Jimin bursts out into loud giggles and even the corner of Namjoon’s lips turn up.

Jimin decides it’s not going to be so hard to like these Jeon pack alphas. Well, two.

Jimin climbs up on the top bunk and rearranges the pillows. He hopes the others don’t mind that he is laying claim to this one, he doesn’t like sleeping too close to the ground, spiders are not his favorite insects.

Taehyung comes in after him and throws himself into the bottom bunk on the opposite wall, only to get kicked off by Namjoon who has already laid claim to it.

He scrambles on the top bunk and folds his legs under him before proceeding to smile at Jimin.

“Hey bunk-mate! We can communicate across the room like this...you can throw me food and I’ll catch it with my mouth-”

“Shut it, Tae, no food throwing, you’re not an animal.” Jungkook interrupts, his booted feet coming inside with loud thuds.

“You’re no fun.” Taehyung sighs. But his smile returns immediately when Jungkook turns to take his shoes off and he catches Jimin’s attention again. He points to Jungkook’s back before folding his hands under his cheeks in a sleeping pose, and then holding two thumbs up, indicating that they will play when Jungkook knocks out.

Jimin giggles softly. He really likes Taehyung.

“Hey shorty, what pack are you from?” Jimin looks up as Namjoon stands and stretches.

“Park clan. My dad was Park Junhoe.”

“Ahhh. I’ve met with him before he passed. Great man. You have a brother as well, no? Seokyung? Sijin?”

“Uhh...Seokjin.” Jimin scratches the side of his neck, a nervous habit he’s had since childhood. He doesn’t want to talk about his pretend family, he doesn’t know much about them except for Seokjin. “Umm, do you have siblings too, Joon?” he quickly changes direction.

“A sister.”

“A pretty sister!” Tae volunteers from where he has flopped unto his back on the bunk above Joon.

Joon grins, walking to the fire pit in the center of the room and lighting up a match to throw into it. They need to get their dinner cooked and eaten before the sun goes down.

This first night, the trainers and officials had supplied them with fresh meat and vegetables but tomorrow onwards, they would all be on their own, capturing their own food and preparing it by themselves. It’s not something they don’t have experience in, but it’s good to practice it.

He sits down beside Jungkook who has started whittling away at some sticks and the two start in on a conversation about people from their own hometown Jimin has no idea of.

Bored now, he decides to take a look at the meat the officials had left on their little table against the wall.

Rabbit. Of course. Easy to catch, easy to cook.

Rolling up his tunic sleeves, Jimin unrolls the small, wrapped cloth bundle next to the fresh meat and pulls out the small knife amidst the limited selection of wooden cooking utensils. He splits the two rabbits in half and salts them before turning around to look for iron pans. There doesn’t seem to be any…

“Wow Jiminie, you’re pretty good at this cooking thing.” Taehyung comes to stand beside him.

“I’m...uh...I’m ok. My father made sure we learned the basics out in the woods.” Jimin covers himself as smoothly as possible. He’d totally let his omega nature take over and forgot his place as an alpha. Dang it!

“We’ll have to make a spit tonight since there doesn’t seem to be any pans or pots…” Jimin muses.

“Yeah, Jungkook has already finished with that. He’s whittling a sapling to spear the rabbits through right now.”

“Oh.”

Jimin is surprised at these alphas efficiency. Although he shouldn’t be. They are, after all, a pack most well-known for their intelligence, cunning strength and power.

--

After their dinner, the 3 alphas unanimously agree to head to the river. Jimin almost panics, remembering that he cannot get wet. He tries to get out of going with them but Taehyung is having none of it, practically throwing him over his shoulders to leave the cabin.

Jimin sulks a bit and lags behind; trying to figure out what kind of excuse to give so he wouldn’t have to get wet. Before he even knows it, they are at the dense riverbed and the heathen alphas are already stripping down to their fleshy glory.

Jimin turns around with wide, shocked eyes as Tae rushes past him, naked as the day he was born, diving into the water with a loud splash.

Joon follows, but at least he has the decency to keep his white shorts on. And then, Jungkook.

Jimin has never seen a finer specimen in all his life. Not that he’s seen any kind of naked man, but Jungkook is just...majestic. Golden, broad shoulders that taper down to a small waist and thick, toned thighs, washboard abs, sinewy arms...Jimin gulps, darting his eyes quickly away from the waistband of Jungkook’s white shorts.

Lord, maybe he hadn’t thought this through thoroughly. He hopes the evening’s dimness will hide his blush as he’s never been surrounded by so many naked alphas in his life. He’s never ever even been in the presence of one without a chaperone!

“Jiminie! Come on, little alpha! Jump in! Don’t be shy!” Tae screams at him from the water.

“Uhhh...maybe next time, I’m...I’m too cold.” Jimin calls back, sitting down on a small boulder at the bank.

At least that part is true. Though spring is ending soon, the air still carries threats of rain and windy breezes.

Thankfully, Taehyung starts talking with Joon and promptly forgets about Jimin.

He lingers for a little bit before he silently gets up and leaves the area, not wanting any sort of surprises later. Alphas and their antics...Jimin knows too well. His older brother is a bratty alpha and Jimin had been unwilling victim to all his teasings whenever he was home from school.

When he gets back to the cabin, he quickly grabs a towel out of his sack and wets it with a little of the well water Joon had gotten earlier before rubbing it over his skin, ridding himself from as much sweat and odor as he can. Jimin always bathes before bed and not being able to do so makes him wince in disgust. Wiping himself down like this will have to do until he learns how to sneak out and bathe by himself.

— END—

Chapter Text

“Pick up the pace, omegas. This is exercise, not dance class. Get those legs pumping!”

Jimin is starting to hate Lt. Dongwan’s voice. It’s already a week into their training and Jimin just wants to die. His body can’t get used to the strenuous exercises and sleep patterns and he is sore everywhere. Not to mention bruised up. The alphas have been good roommates, clean and respectful of one another’s space. Jimin has already seen many of the other teams punished for fighting amongst one another but he knows that won’t happen with them. He was seriously lucky enough to be in a group of friends who were from the same pack. And Jimin is a lover, not a fighter, regardless of entity.

This morning, Lt. Dongwan had awoken them all up at the crack of dawn, given everyone 5 minutes to dress and then pulled them out to the front open lawn where they’ve been the past hour, doing all the cardio exercises Jimin has always hated.

“Come on, runt, you can do better!” He barks at Jimin and Jimin quickly amps up his pace. He’s so tired he can collapse.

“You’re doing great, shorty!”

He hears Tae say from beside him and Jimin throws him a grateful smile.

He sneaks a peek at Jungkook, who shows no sign of tiredness at all and Jimin wants to throw something at him.

Out of the three, Jimin likes Taehyung the most, then Joon. Jungkook and his aloof and unfriendly ass is not even included.

Lt. Dongwan finally blows the whistle, signaling them to all stop.

“Now, we move on to the relay race. In your 4 person team, you will designate each person for each part of the race. The first runner will have to jump over the boulders that have been lined up. The 2nd, crawl on their bellies under barbed wires. 3rd will run through a muddy pit and 4th will have to heave themselves up and over the climbing wall to get to the finish line. You all have 10 minutes to decide and strategize beginning...now.”

Jimin wants to die. Again. This is their first activity as a group and he knows he is not going to make it over anything.

“Don’t stress, Jiminie.” Tae rubs his shoulders reassuringly and then laughs. “You look like my kitten at home. Small and cute and easily worn out,” he further explains as Joon and Jungkook walk over to join them.

Jimin can feel Jungkook’s eyes on him fleetingly, as if regretting his decision to choose him for their team.

“Tae, you start off and do boulders. Joon, you get the mud pit and I’ll do the last round.” He finally turns to address Jimin.

“Runt, i hope you can crawl fast. You’re small so it shouldn’t be too hard for you.”

Jimin begs to differ, but says nothing, just offering a fast prayer to the Gods for not having to do the mud pit and get wet.

Jimin watches with wide eyes as Tae hops over the boulders with his long legs like nothing. The alpha is practically flying!

Omg, omg, omg...he’s coming to Jimin too fast! His heart is pounding at miles per second, his lungs already ready to burst and he hasn’t even started on his obstacle yet.

“You can do it shorty!” Tae smacks him on the back and Jimin takes off, falling to his belly and crawling as fast as his elbows will allow him to.

He’s paying nobody no mind, focused on his task, elated that Tae had come in first so that had allowed him a head start.

Then….oh, then.

Jimin realizes that the other 4 team members are moving past him at amazing speeds while he lags. And oh, shit, the back of his shirt is now caught on a piece of barbed wire, hindering him from moving forward without tearing his clothing. Not an issue for all the others, they’re all shirtless.

Jimin stops crawling and reaches over his head to fidget with the wire, absolutely not taking his clothes off for anyone.

He hears Tae yelling out for him to hurry.

Jimin finally un-snags his collar and crawls the rest of the way to Namjoon who has been waiting for his tap.

“Sor-“

Joon doesn’t acknowledge his breathless apology, just gets his tap and jumps right into the mud pit. Jimin sees that Joon is the only one in it now, all others have already finished this part of the race.

He watches dejectedly from his sitting position on the ground, tired out, as Joon taps Jungkook who simply grabs the long, hanging rope attached to the climbing wall and easily vaults over.

It’s impressive to witness because he did it so freaking effortlessly. But alas, they’re still last.

“Sorry Tae,” Jimin mumbles as Taehyung plops beside him.

“Eh, no worries. It’s good to lose sometimes.”

Judging from Jungkook’s stern, killer expression as he comes towards them, Jimin has a feeling not all the members share in Tae’s line of thinking.

“Oh ho, losers.” Lt. Dongwan approaches them, hands on hips, a smile across his face. “Your task is to carry the firewood from the forest back here tonight and disperse them accordingly to each cabin. The trek is about a mile walk so prepare yourselves.”

Jimin bends his knees and slides the heavy straps of the firewood cradle off his shoulder. Made of thin slats of wood and rope, when carried too long, it leaves its marks upon one’s skin.

This is his first and last load, the other three having gone back and forth two, and in Jungkook’s case, three, times passing by him. Only Tae and Joon stop to inquire if he is ok. He may as well have been a tree for Jungkook, who pretended he wasn’t even visible when they passed one another on the trail.

Rubbing his shoulder where the strap had cut in to his skin, Jimin quietly makes his way into the cabin.

“Here shorty. Rub this on it.”

Jimin thanks Taehyung as he takes the tin of ointment from him and slowly hops onto his bunk. The other two are nowhere to be seen.

“This sucks.” Jimin mutters as he sits as close to the darkened corner of the wall as possible before baring his shoulder and popping open the tin containing a strong, lavender smelling balm.

“Awww, poor thing, here, let me help you.”

“No!” Jimin shouts as he sees Taehyung move, his shadow shifting over the wall. He hurriedly pulls his shirt back up over his bare skin. “Uhh...i mean, it’s ok. I can do it myself.”

Tae cocks his head at him a little strangely, but settles back down and shrugs. “That is the best salve, ever. My omma is a healer, she made it especially for me.”

“It smells great.”

“Yeah?! I love flowers so i made sure she made it smell good. The one she made for Jungkook smells just like him - herbal mint.” He makes a face and Jimin giggles as he resumes rubbing the ointment on his skin, opting to stick his hand under his shirt instead of pulling it off his shoulder like earlier. Jimin doesn’t say anything, but he happens to like Jungkook’s natural minty essence. It’s fresh and clean and soothing. So opposite of the brooding alpha.

“Don’t feel bad, kitty. We all have a starting point. I can see that this is your first time embracing your alpha. By the time this month is over, you will be the strongest alpha in your pack!”

Jimin wants to laugh at the absurdity of Tae’s words. He isn’t even supposed to be here, much less be an alpha. But God forbid he is caught in the lie, his family’s honor would take the biggest hit and he would be beheaded, pack leader child or not, not to mention Seokjin’s.

“If you guys are done playing house, we’re cooking dinner outside tonight.”

They both look up as Jungkook speaks from the doorway, holding some dead peasants in one hand.

Taehyung claps his hands in excitement and walks over to Jimin, who is handing back his pointment. He seals the cap tightly before tossing it onto his bunk and walking over to doorway.

Jimin hides a smile when Tae pinches Jungkook’s cheek as he passes by him before reaching down to take the birds from his leader.

“Jungkook…” Jimin begins, stopping the alpha before he followed Tae.

“I’m...I’m very sorry I caused our lost.”

Time seems to freeze as they stare at one another for what seems like eternities to Jimin until the alpha silently cants his head in acknowledgement before turning away.

Sighing, Jimin flops back into his bed, deciding to just rest for 5 minutes before he goes out to help the other 3 prepare dinner.

Jungkook throws the blade of grass he’d been chewing on into the fire as Taehyung and Joon sit opposite of him, bickering about God only knows what.

His mind flitters to Park Jimin, the mini alpha.

Seriously, how can an alpha be so damn small? And weak? And pretty? He’s delicate, all pretty hued in pinks and freshness. He stands out like a small hibiscus flower, the kind his mother loves so much, the ones she calls mugunghwa, out here amongst the rest of them, the tumbleweeds. Should the wind pick up, there’s no doubts in his mind that the tumbleweeds would roll him over good as well.

Jungkook doesn’t know what the alphas here in the west are eating, but he sure hopes they change because alphas that size are bound to get eaten up and spit back out in any situation.

Sure, the same can be said of Taehyung who has a pretty personality and a face to match, but that’s where the fooling ends. He’s got the body of an alpha, and the mindset of an alpha when the situation warrants so. He’s just a friendly, flower loving individual. Most of the times.

But Park Jimin.

Jungkook shakes his head. He is rendered speechless with that one. He was so slow today with getting the wood. Jungkook had past him earlier and turned around to yell at him to get him to pick up his pace but he’d seen the determination on the mini-alpha’s face and he’d stopped himself. He understands that not all alphas have the same strength he has, but still. This one is just really damn weak. The weakest he’s ever seen for alphas. A part of him had wanted to go and help take a load off, but he also needs the alpha to learn to hone his own brute strength so he’d turned around and gone on his way.

Speaking of Jimin, the birds are about to be done and he still hasn’t emerged from the cabin. Jungkook knows he may have scared the kid with his quiet personality, but he isn’t too upset about them losing. He understands this is a team now and as his father has always taught him: win or lose - no man is to be left behind.

But there is just something about the mini alpha that rubs at Jungkook oddly.

“Taehyung, go get your friend. It’s time to eat.” Jungkook pulls the sapling piercing the peasants off the fire, inspecting them for doneness. Satisfied, he starts sliding them off into the individual metal plates as Tae heads inside the cabin.

He comes out a moment later, alone.

“Jiminie is asleep. I don’t have the heart to wake him. He looks so tired.” Tae almost whines and Jungkook almost smiles. It’s hard not to do so when it comes to Taehyung.

“Just save him some.” Jungkook focuses on getting the meat off the stick, missing out on the raised brows and looks exchanged between Joon and Tae.

--

Since he slept so early, Jimin is up early as well, beating the morning call by 30 minutes. He hops off his bed quietly and stretches, only to freeze when he notices a small light from the other side of the cabin.

Glancing over, he sees that it is Joon, reading by candlelight once again. Jimin had woken up once before from a dream to see him in the corner reading but he’d been too tired to inquire. Now, he looks closely and catches the title of the book, eyes widening in surprise.

“You like poetry?”

Joon snaps his head over to Jimin when he hears the whisper. He nods.

“Wow. i would never have thought…”

“There are a few of us who actually enjoy reading as well as physical activities, Jimin.”

“Oh! I know! I’m sorry, i didn't mean to offend you, Joon.”

Joon smiles wider and turns back to his book.

“I’ve read that edition. The next one is even better.”

Joon turns surprised eyes to Jimin. “You’ve read this? Iron Lace and Sinful Grace By Yoon Si Jung?”

“Of course. All his other poetry books as well. It’s a revelation to see him develop from loyalty to romance in the continuation. He’s started on the final volume already, Petals; Rebirth.”

“Wow.”

Joon studies Jimin’s earnest face for a minute before he laughs softly. “You do seem more like the scholarly type than the physical type.” Namjoon closes the book and stuffs it under his pillow. “We saved you dinner from last night, if you’re hungry.”

“You did?!” Jimin whispers out, eyes flying open wide in pleasant surprise. Joon nods to the table and Jimin scurries off, hunger taking over everything.

He finishes his meal in record time and starts brewing water over the burning coals for some hot herbal tea for them all.

As he pours water into the tin cups, the other two boys wake up and start getting ready. Jimin averts his eyes from all the bare skin open to him.

“Jiminie, your tea smells lovely.” Tae pulls on a tunic over his chest.

“Really? Thank you! I made you all some as well.”

“Wahhh! That’s so sweet of you, shorty!” Tae walks over and ruffles his hair cutely before picking up his cup and sniffing it.

“Ahhh, honey and chamomile. The best.”

Grinning, Jimin takes a cup in each hand and walks over to Joon first and then slowly to Jungkook who is fastening his boots.

“Thank you.”

Their eye contact is fleeting and barely there, even in the dark. Jimin nods solemnly and skips back towards Tae who is downing his drink.

“Jimin, this is ridiculously lovely. Just like you, mini alpha.”

Jimin beams at the compliments and blushes prettily as Tae coos at him and tickles him under the chin.

“Kids, move on out.”

They break apart at Jungkook’s grunt as he stands up from his corner and moves forward to place the tin cup down on the small table.

 

 

—END—

 

 

Chapter 3 teaser:


Jungkook pauses. Why is he thinking of alpha-alpha relationships? He’s not attracted to another alpha...oh no. Absolutely not. Sure, the other alpha is pretty and small and cute and-

Chapter Text

“Today’s activity: Jogging. 20 mile excursion around the mountains. We will end and meet back at the river to cool off.”

Oh, not too bad, Jimin thinks as Lt. Dongwan announces their physical activity after their grueling session of morning exercises.

“And these,” Dongwan points to a pile of what looks like a stack of white vests next to him. “Are body weights.” He picks one up.

“The pockets on either side of these are filled with sand. You will all be strapping these extra 40 pounds on for the jog.”

Jimin closes his eyes. He’s dead.

 

 

Jimin knots the strings of the vest across his chest and then stands up. He takes a wobbly step forward. Goodness gracious, it feels like he’s being weighed down with stones. He can barely stand with these on and they expect him to jog?!

He hops a little and almost falls forward, if not for Tae pulling him back upright.

“Don’t pout, kitten. You’ll be all right. This will only make you stronger.”

“Taehyungie...I can barely move!”

“I’ll go slow behind you, ok?”

Jimin nods forlornly, his eyes shooting around looking at the other alphas in the camp. They all have their vests strapped on but are moving around as if there isn't an extra 40 lbs on their bodies.

He peeps at Jungkook talking with Namjoon, muscular arms folded across his chest, legs apart, looking like a true alpha, the heavy vest only adding to his appeal.

Ugh. Jimin hates how easily he makes everything seem.

“Ladies, start whenever you shall please.” Lt. Dongwan’s sarcastic command bellows through and everyone starts moving, Jimin the slowest.

 

 

Jungkook splashes the cold water against his sweaty skin, relishing in the crispness. He’d been the first to complete the 20 mile trek, pushing himself hard, always.

It’s not long before he sees Namjoon at the bank with him, sliding off the vest and plunging into the cold lake -also with all his clothes on. They grin at each other, tired, yet enjoying the physical exertions on their bodies. As alphas, the need for sport, for challenge, for push is always clawing inside them, always ready to come out to play.

Other alphas from other groups start arriving and even an hour after everyone else has arrived, there is still yet to be a sign of the mini alpha and Tae.

As the others and the trainers start leaving back to the camp, Joon and Jungkook remain, waiting for their friend. And his friend.

Jungkook finds himself becoming irritable at Jimin for being so weak. He swears even the omegas in his clan are bigger and stronger.

With that thought, he finally sees the top of Taehyung’s silvery gray hair as he jogs up along the path, his back to them as he yells out encouragements for the person behind him...obviously Jimin.

Jungkook almost rolls his eyes as he sees Park Jimin trudging up, sweaty, barely alive, missing his vest. It’s slung over Taehyung’s shoulder.

Of course.

Jungkook watches as Jimin finally stops, bent over, hands on his waist as he tries to catch his breath.

“Sor...sorry...guys…” he finally huffs out after about 5 minutes, looking up sheepishly, flushed pink cheeks and eyes glittering, blonde hair plastered to his forehead.

Jungkook wants to remain mad because their team is, once again, last, but he finds that he can’t hold on to that emotion when Jimin looks like such a kicked puppy. A sweaty, tired, pretty puppy.

He shakes his head to absolve himself of that thought and stands up, brushing his backside.

“It’s ok Jiminie. Get your bearings and wash yourself. We’ll head back first.” Namjoon gets up, pushing Jungkook forward.

Taehyung immediately jumps into the water, screaming at the top of his lungs about how cold it is but how lovely it feels at the same time.

Jimin nods at Joon, avoiding eye contact with Jungkook and then giggles as he watches Tae, walking over to sit on a flat rock that's half submerged in the river before dipping his small towel into the water.

Taehyung watches him ring it out and scrub it along his neck.

“You’re awfully shy for an alpha, Park Jimin.” Taehyung says, misunderstanding the reason why Jimin won’t get into the water.

“I...uh...I was raised this way.” Jimin mutter out, unable to keep eye contact with his friend.

Taehyung shrugs and nods. “I know some people like you back home. But it’s not cause they’re shy. More like they’re embarrassed, the skinny punks!”

He cackles and Jimin joins in on his mirth.

 

Jimin wakes up close to dawn, unable to go back to sleep. 

He slowly climbs out of his bed and wraps his blanket around him before making his way out of the cabin to settle down on the front steps. He’d snuck out last night to tie a string on the rose bush for Jin’s reassurance as well as sneak over to the river for a quick bath so he doesn’t need one today, but he sure likes the peace before everyone else wakes up. 

Tilting his head, he gazes up at the beautiful moon and her stars, almost in awe at how gorgeous Mother Nature can be. 

He hopes Seokjin is not worrying about him and is sleeping and dreaming sweetly. He hopes Jin’s omma is doing okay, feeling better now...but most of all, he hopes the remaining few weeks will fly by so he can get out of here and go back to his quiet life of studies and no intense physical exercises. He misses his traditional dance classes, the most exercise he does daily.

“Can’t sleep?”

The husky voice jars him out of his musings and Jimin almost jumps as he turns to look over his shoulder. The door had opened so quietly he hadn’t heard it. 

Jungkook is propped against the frame, arms folded, eyes also on the moon. 

“I like how clear the moon is here. You must enjoy seeing this view constantly.” He says before moving forward, surprising Jimin by sitting down next to him.

Jimin looks over and nods, nervous because this is the closest they’ve ever been, besides sleeping on the same side of the room.

“You look...tense. You’re not scared of the dark, are you?” Jungkook’s eyes probe into his face. 

Hell, yes, he’s nervous, but not of the dark.  

Jimin fakes a scoff, takes his eyes off the dark depths and back up to the moon. 

“As if. I’m not scared of anything.”

“Good. In that case I can tell you there’s a huge spider next to your hand.” Jungkook looks over and nods to the other side of Jimin’s seat.

Jimin gasps and pushes up from his seat, his foot tripping on a piece of raised wood, causing him to propel head first into Jungkook, knocking him off his butt and down they both go, barrelling into the dirt.

Jimin lands with a loud oomph! on top of Jungkook’s chest as the latter falls onto his back. Their eyes catch in the dim lighting from the moon and Jimin’s breath halts as he sees the sparkle in the depths. He’s never seen anyone with such dark eyes...so dark that they glimmer...as if stars are hidden within them. 

The he realizes their position and the burn of Jungkook’s palms through his tunic sleeves as he holds onto his arms.

Praying that the darkness is hiding his blushing cheeks, Jimin pushes up and scrambles away before the heat engulfing his body flames them both up.

“I’m...uh...gonna go make..uh..tea.”

“Ok. If you’re making double, I'd like a cup as well.” Jungkook says nonchalantly, unaffected, as he stands up and pats off his bum. “Didn’t mean to scare you like that.”

“Uh...uh-huh.” Jimin plucks his blanket from the ground, swings it over an arm and then hurries back inside, heart thumping, palms clammy.

With shaky hands, he puts the water kettle over the small burning fire pit in the middle of the cabin, laying out 4 tin cups as well. 

His heart is still pounding loudly over the closeness he’d just shared with Jungkook.

Jimin has had his share of flirting alphas and betas but he’s never been so drawn to any before; his heart certainly has never hammered strong enough to make him tremble like this either.

He’s attracted to Jungkook and he dislikes it. There’s no reason why he should even be attracted to the brute - he’s too brooding and quiet and stoic instead of nice and understanding and even playful like Tae and Joon.

But!

Jimin’s mind reminds him that Jungkook has never been outright mean to him. His eyes may project annoyance, but he’s never said anything to hurt Jimin’s feelings entirely.

He sighs as the kettle spout starts spitting, taking it off the flames and pouring the boiling water into the waiting tin cups.

 

 

Jungkook sits back down on the steps after Jimin enters the cabin. He shakes his head over the odd tingling he gets whenever he’s within vicinity of mini-alpha. Alpha-alpha attractions are rare and illegal, the small stories he’s ever heard of all end in death and unhappiness.

Jungkook pauses. Why is he thinking of alpha-alpha relationships? He’s not attracted to another alpha...oh no. Absolutely not. Sure, the other alpha is pretty and small and cute and-

Jungkook quickly stands up, abruptly cutting off his thought process. He is not attracted to another alpha. He’s just been too far from omegas and betas for too long and the suppressants to contain his rut are just messing with his brain.

  

 

“Park Jimin.”

Jimin looks up as Lt. Dongwan bellows out his name.

“Kitchen duty for the rest of the day.”

Jimin internally sighs the biggest sigh of relief in his entire life. He’d rather cook all the peasants and deer and rice in the world than be out shooting and killing said animals. Beside him, he catches Taehyung’s happy wink and smile at him. He cheeses back quickly before turning his attention back to the front.

Taehyung also has kitchen duty with him so he’s elated to have one friend, his favorite friend, keep him company.

“Jeon Jungkook, Yong Junhyung, Kim Namjoon, Ha Wonho. Barn duties, including horses baths and exercises.”

Well. At least Jungkook gets to be near his horse. The man loves his animal with a passion Jimin thinks surpasses how most alphas feel towards their omegas.

As they are all dismissed, Jimin feels Taehyung reach over and grip his hand, swinging it as they walk together towards the cooking cabin. He starts singing, off-key, some old children’s lullaby as they walk and Jimin can only laugh along.

They enter and Taehyung groans at the pile of dirty dishes he sees piled up on the wooden tables lined against the walls.

“Oh my god. These alphas are animals! Pigs. No, worse than my pigs!”

Jimin giggles at the outburst as he ties an apron around his waist and then assist with Tae’s as well. He loves how Taehyung is so childish in a way, it makes him so comfortable to be around. But he’s also seen how strong the kind alpha is, running with 80lbs on him as well as lifting broken tree trunks out of paths easily.  He’s also a very skilled at combats, but, like Jimin, he always says he’s a lover and not a fighter.

“Taehyungie, you do the dishes. I’ll pluck the birds and cook the rice and barley, okay?”

“You’re so kind, kittie. You know I suck at cooking. I’d burn myself. And then you as you try to help me. And then this cabin as it catches in flames. And then our families as we’d be disgraced.” Tae says dramatically, placing a daisy behind one ear.

Jimin grins and pats Tae’s back in a soft, shooing manner, urging him to get to the buckets and start filling them with water. He has a long task ahead of him.

Jimin, on the other hand, is in an environment he thrives in, having grown up in a kitchen he practically lived in with his omma.

When the huge pot of water on the fire boils, he dips the dead birds into it, one at a time and places them back on the wooden table. Once all 10 have been dipped in boiling water, Jimin sets to plucking, the scalding water making the process easier.

By the time he’s done, his hands are red and fingers lined with damp creases, arms tired. He looks behind him and sees that Taehyung has almost finished his chores as well.

“Taehyungie, when you’re finished, would you please refill my pots with water and place them over the fires?”

“I can do that now, Jiminie. I need to stretch my back anyways!”

Jimin smiles to himself. He’s ready to drop these birds into the water and boil them down for soup.

He lifts the lid off the pot of water he’d managed to heat for the mixed grain rice and sees that it’s boiling, ready. He salts the it and then scoops out the rice and pours it into the water. With a quick stir, he leans over it quickly, taking a whiff of the steam. He loves the smell of rice water, not to mention the fact that it, as a steam, softens skin. Jimin covers the rice as Taehyung finishes placing the other pots on the fires and heads back to his dishwashing chore, already starting in on another kid’s song.

Jimin shakes his head and laughs softly, noticing that Tae now has two daisies behind his ears.

 

  

In the midst of chirping crickets and whistling tree branches, Jimin quietly tip toes across the damp grass, slippers in one hand, clutching his wide leg pants higher in the other so the hems don’t get wet. It’s now past the end of the day, well unto another, and he’d snuck out after midnight when he’d heard snoring from the alphas so he could go tie his ribbon for Seokjin on the rose bush as well as sneak over to the river to take a bath. It’s been almost 4 days since his last one and he’d been starting to feel like a dirt road.

He usually lingers around the riverbed for a long while after for his omega scent to disappear before returning but tonight was so cold, he’d left as soon as possible.

Kitchen duties earlier had been fun for him, listening to Taehyung sing songs and talk about his family and his little tiny crush on his neighbor, a sunny, red-haired beta named Hoseok. Tae is eager to get back home to see him, bring him flowers from across their journey.

Jimin had melted at the sweetness of Tae’s gestures for his sweetheart. So expected of the tender-hearted alpha. Jimin hopes to someday find a love that romantic as well.

He smiles softly now, as he tiptoes over some tiny white blooms on the grassy area. He’s just passed the barn when he hears the wood doors creak open. Jimin freezes, blood draining from his face.

“I knew it. You’re an omega.”

 

 

 

 

—END—

 

 

Chap 4 teaser: 

 

“As I thought. So. To be fair, since we’re already here at the river, we’ll have a team swimming competition. Last team to have all 4 members swim to the broken tree rising out of the river and back to the bank will endure the punishment.” Lt. Dongwan announces.

Jimin feels his heart sink to the bottom of his soles. He cannot get wet.

 

 

Chapter Text

Jimin leans back against the barn’s interior wall and stares down at the block of hay he is sitting on, unable to look at Kim Namjoon, who is sitting across from him. He can feel Joon’s speculative eyes on him though.

He’d been caught and he’d confessed, telling Joon the story of why and how he’d gotten to where he is right now. Now it’s in Joon’s hands whether Jimin leaves or continues.

“You know how much trouble you could get in, Park Jimin?”

Jimin silently pouts, willing the tears in his eyes not to fall. He knows.

“You’ve jeopardized us all. It’s illegal for you to be here, to participate in camps like this.”

“I know! But I couldn’t...couldn’t not help my best friend, out Namjoonie. I had to at least try. Surely you can understand that. ” Jimin sniffles. And then, there’s nothing but quietness for a few minutes before he hears Joon sigh deeply.

“That, I can. I don’t know if I’d go this far but...you’re...pretty damn courageous, Park Jimin.”

“Huh?” Jimin finally looks up and meets Joon’s gaze on him. Jimin is shocked that he is smiling a little.

“You know, I knew you were an omega, even before I smelled your natural scent, which, by the way, smells insanely good and has already disappeared. You’re back to your alpha stench. But your demeanor and your mannerisms are so indicative of an omega. The cooking, the cleaning, the instinctive nurturing when one of us gets a tiny scratch...your constant fumbling over and picking up after Taehyung’s disastrous self…I mean, one still has to look carefully but being raised by an omega sister and an omega appa along with 2 omega uncles...I’ve developed quite the tendency to pick up on little signs and signals. I am a little glad to know my instincts are right though.”

“Oh? Why is that?”

“Because no alpha is that soft-hearted. Not even Taehyung. I’m not even kidding. I’d never been so confused in my entire lifetime. Good to know my instincts were right.”

Jimin grins softly. “What made you suspect of me, Joonie?”

“When we change. You always have your back to us or leave the cabin entirely. Also, you never undress in front of us. And the way you fold your things - you always smooth a hand over the material when you finish. I learned from my sister that they teach that to omegas in school.”

“Oh…” Jimin’s eyes widen, unaware he’s been so careless.

“There’s also the way you make sure we’re all full before you eat or take the last scoop. Most alphas, when it comes to food, we kind of have this unspoken rule of whoever finishes first gets second dibs...but you don’t do that.

“Anyway. Like I said, I only picked up on this stuff because of my omega appa and sister. Growing up, I followed them around all the time, thus making my sister and I extremely close so I just naturally picked up on her habits - habits I see in you.”

Jimin smiles, shaking his head, going back to staring at his hands.

“So … going back on what you touched upon earlier…I’m curious.”

Jimin looks back to Namjoon at his question. “Sure.”

“Am I to understand that you can’t get wet or it takes up to two hours for the potion to work again?”

“Yes. That’s a major reason why I don't ever bathe with you guys and why I choose to not go to the river mostly.”

“Mmm.” Joon nods. “Now I understand.”

“Are you...are you going to tell the others?” Jimin finally asks.

Namjoon looks at Jimin and shakes his head. “I won’t. If you don’t want me to. You’re a friend now and I will keep your secret. I think, in this case, the less people who knows, the safer you are.”

Jimin breathes out a huge sigh of relief. “Thank you, Namjoonie.”

 

 

 

 

 

Jungkook, wading waist deep into the water, folds his arms across his chest and watches as Jimin and Namjoon converse off to the side of the mossy bank.

After a long set of exercises and jogging through the mountains, they’d all been assigned to capture their dinners before allowed to head to the stream to bathe and clean up.

He’d notice these last few days, those two getting closer, discussing literary material late at night as well as Joon going out of his way to help encourage Jimin and even carry some of his heavier items when Tae has his hands full. So now, not only one, but both of his best friends were readily eager to assist the mini-alpha. He can understand Taehyung as the boy can be a total softie, but for Namjoon, it’s harder for him to dissect. Joon is less talkative and open, more like him.

As he watches from the corner of his eyes, he hears Jimin’s melodic laughter a split second before he throws himself over, knocking into Joon who reaches over to stabilize him so they don’t both hit the ground. A lick of something unknown burns up Jungkook’s spine and he quickly turns away, focusing on washing his hair and his dirt-encrusted arms.

“Teams. We need a clean-up crew for the evening. Any volunteers?”

Everyone moans and groans at Lt. Dongwan’s question.

“As I thought. So. To be fair, since we’re already here at the river, we’ll have a team swimming competition. Last team to have all 4 members swim to the broken tree rising out of the river and back to the bank will endure the punishment.”

Jimin feels his heart sink to the bottom of his soles. He cannot get wet. He looks over to Joon, who is also looking back at him in panic.

“Hurry. Line up along the bank, alphas!”

Namjoon watches Jimin, who has frozen up like a statue, knees about to give out. He quickly steps forward.

“Lieutenant, we have a team member who has cut his foot on glass this morning. He was instructed by the healers to not get it wet as the salve was just applied on it so it can heal properly.”

Lt. Dongwan frowns at Namjoon. “That means your team automatically forfeits, which means your team will do the cleaning.”

Namjoon nods.

“Alright, alphas. Pick up your things and head back to camp.”

From his position in the river, Jungkook stares at his friends as they both head over to Jimin. He can hear Taehyung exclaiming about why Jimin hadn’t told him about the accident and Joon quietly nodding to the mini-alpha, who looks both relieved and depressed all at once.

Odd. He’d seen Jimin’s small feet this morning as he’d put on his boots and there was no cut, no bandage. He’s also seen Jimin all morning and he’d not once gone to the healer’s tent.

What the hell. Why is Joon lying?

 

 

 

 

For Jimin, it seems he escaped one close call only to end up in another. Seems Mother Nature is set on revealing his horrid lie, one way or another. 

The rain started falling as soon as everyone finished eating. The firewood supply needs to be covered with the tarps, all the fire pits need to be shielded as well and the dishes need to be cleaned and put away.

As cleaning crew, they had no choice but to work in the weather while everyone else stayed inside, clean and warm.

“Jiminie, you can do the dishes here, under the porch alcove. I’ll bring the trays of dirty dishes here and grab the water bucket as well.”

Jimin nods at Namjoon. He’d first thought of Joon finding out his secret to be terrible, but now, he’s so thankful.

He flips a wooden crate over and sits on it, pulling out washcloths and the soap supply to get ready. He looks out over the porch and sees Tae and Jungkook in the misting rain, unrolling the blue tarps, preparing to cover the firewood. He feels terrible that they have to work in the rain all because of him. He’ll have to find a way to make up for this.

Jimin finds his eyes tracing over the bulging muscles of Jungkook’s arms and veins of his forearms as he works. When the alpha turns his back and hunches over, he admires the broadness of the shoulder blades as the tunic he is wearing stretches. Jungkook is probably the strongest and most handsome alpha Jimin has met. He breaks out of his musing when Joon comes back with the bucket of dirty dishes and the cleaning water.

 

 

 

 

Jungkook is moody all night, not because of the chores (he actually enjoys physical labor) but because he can't get over Joon lying and how close the two alphas seem to be getting. He’d seen Joon smile as he’d carried over the dishes to the mini-alpha before sprinting over to help them with the other duties. He’d noticed the clandestine glances they’ve shot to one another as well, as if they are harboring some secret between them. Maybe even Tae. But Taehyung had seemed surprised about the foot thing so maybe not him.

Jungkook had stayed out later, sending both Joon and Taehyung back to the camp. He’d decided to retrieve well water and refill the supply himself, allocating time to think.

Now, as he plops down on his bed and bends over to untie his boots, he can feel the strain and exertion tolling on his body and he figures he better rest up, they have to all get back up in only a few hours. He sees his two lumpy friends under their blankets against the opposite wall, their soft, quiet snores permeating the cabin. He hadn’t bothered to look at the bunk above his, sure that Jimin is out as well, most likely tired from exerting so much strength doing the dishes. He tries not to snort at that thought.

He’s just stood up and raised his hands to stretch when the front cabin door quietly opens and in walks the mini alpha, a steaming tin cup in his hands.

Their eyes meet and he sees Jimin freeze by the open frame momentarily before lowering his gaze and closing the door behind him.

“Did you come in by the back door?” He asks.

Jungkook nods, lowering his arms and sitting back down on his bunk. He sees Jimin hesitate a little before he squares up his shoulders and walk towards him.

“I...I made you some hot tea. It’s cold outside and I didn’t know how long you had planned to stay out but ...uh...here you go.”

Jungkook’s eyes widen in pleasant surprise as he looks at the steaming tin cup held out towards him. He reaches out to take it, fingers brushing against mini-alpha’s, sparking a tingle along his arm. He notices for the first time how freaking tiny Jimin’s hands are. What kind of an alpha…

Clearing his throat, he sips at the tea. “Thank you.”

Jimin beams at him and Jungkook promptly forgets that he’s supposed to be upset. He continues sipping his tea as Jimin heads over to the small burning fire to put away his tea powder and accessories.

Jimin bends down and Jungkook’s eyes involuntarily follow the dip of his tunic’s neckline, revealing a smooth, long neck and shadowed collarbones. The dying embers cast a small glow on Jimin’s face, revealing the smoothness of his complexion, the prettiest of pale peaches and rose hues, the long lashes and plump lips. He really looks like a delicate flower. But contrary to his pretty features, Jungkook has also witnessed Jimin’s admirable grit and fortitude in trying his best in every circumstance. Had Jimin been an omega or beta, Jungkook is sure he would’ve stopped at nothing to court him. But as is, omegas with such combinations of strength and purpose, not to mention beauty, are far and few.

Jungkook clears his throat and drops his gaze, appalled at where his train of thought had gone to. What the hell. Park Jimin is driving him crazy. There’s a charm about the mini-alpha that buries his defenses and rouses his instinctive, protective nature. Probably explains why his friends seem so insane as well.

Jungkook places the empty tin cup on the floor and flips onto his back, closing his eyes to blot out the scene in front of him. It is still a failed attempt for his mind, of course, has already committed it to memory.

 

 

 

 

“Why’d you lie for him, Joon?”

Joon crosses his arms over his chest as they watch their horses prance around the fenced-in yard for their morning break.

Namjoon had known this was coming. He knows how perceptive and smart Jungkook is and he’d been expecting it. He hates having to lie but lives are at stake and he promises to reveal all when this whole thing is over.

“Jimin’s been feeling sick. Getting wet would make him even more so and we can’t afford to have a sick alpha - we’re already so far behind everyone else.”

He feels Jungkook’s gaze on him, discerning and thorough. He tries to not let his nerves show; he’s never been good at hiding anything from his best friend. He finally hears a drawn out sigh.

“A least give me a heads up next time. I don’t want to be stuck in a limbo if the lieutenant questions me.”

Namjoon nods, inwardly releasing a sigh of relief. Safe. For now.

“Also…sorry, I didn’t mean to just step in and make the decision without-“

“It’s fine.” Jungkook brushes off Joon’s apology with a hearty slap to his back. He knows he is set to be chief when his father passes and the other alphas look up to him, but he keeps it a thin line between his best friends and himself.

 

—END—

 

 

Next chap teaser: “Alphas. Today’s activity. One on one combats.”

 

 

Chapter Text

 

 

“Alphas. Today’s activity. One on one combats.”

Jimin closes his eyes. He feels Taehyung’s hand pat his back softly, swiftly in a gesture meant to comfort.

But Jimin is anything but. These alphas are going to tear him apart, he knows it. He tries not to cower when Dongwan announces his sparring partner. Of course, it would be Jang Wooyoung, an alpha who is almost twice his size with beefy arms, and thick legs.

After the first group of pairings are announced, Jimin promptly plops down on the ground as Tae runs off to grab something to snack on.

“Jimin. You okay?”

Jimin jerks out of his thoughts of ripping Seokjin's brother apart when he gets his hands on him again and looks up as Jungkook approaches him.

“No. I’m going to die. At my funeral please tell my omma i loved her.”

Jungkook finds himself grinning. “So dramatic, runt. You’ll be fine. Maybe a bit bruised up, but fine.”

“Jang Wooyoung is gonna annihilate me.”

“He’s big, yes. But you’re small.”

“Thanks for pointing out the obvious. I kinda figured that out myself.”

Jungkook laughs at Jimin’s sarcasm and unfolds his hands from across his chest. “Use your size to your advantage. He’s bigger than you - that means he’ll tire out before you do.”

“Jungkook. You’ve seen me run. I don’t get very far.”

Jungkook snorts. He washes away the small feeling of worry that had risen into the back of his mind.

“Come. Stand up.”

“What? Why?” Jimin whines as Jungkook reaches down and pulls at his wrists.

“Practice makes perfect. Let’s see what you got.”

“What? Jungkook, no!”

“Jimin, yes. Joon’s busy and Tae’s eating. Come on.”

Jimin drags his feet as Jungkook pulls him up and stumbles over to behind some small hedges. He doesn’t wanna grapple with Jungkook. Close proximity with the alpha unnerves him. Why did he not follow Tae when the alpha had ran off to eat?

Jungkook drops his wrists and turns to face him. “Get into position. Fierce stance, elbows tucked in to your side, fists up.”

Jimin watches Jungkook demonstrate. Wow, he looks good, he thinks.

“Jimin. Snap out of it. Come on.”

The omega feels heat rise through his body at being caught so blatantly admiring the other’s form.

“Junggoooo-“

“No more whining. Fists, up.” Jungkook pulls Jimin’s arms up into position and even kicks his feet apart. The brute. After he’s done, he scoots back and stare and Jimin sees the corner of the dratted alpha’s lips kick up a little.

“Don’t you dare laugh!”

Jungkook clears his throat and looks off into the distance for a few seconds, gathering his resolve before looking at Jimin again. He wants to laugh so badly, the boy’s form looks less like an alpha warrior, more like an alpha grandfather on his last days.

“You’re so freaking small. Your advantage is up close, not far.” Jungkook walks up right into Jimin’s space.

“Woah…” Jimin leans his upper body back, startled.

“How would you push me away?”

Jimin places a hand against Jungkook’s shoulder and pushes. Nothing.

Jungkook sighs. “Harder.”

Jimin exerts more pressure. Still, nothing.

“Jimin, you’re going to have to-“

Jungkook’s words get cut off as he suddenly feels himself falling. Jimin had hooked his leg behind Jungkook’s calf and then put all his body weight into a shoulder shove that sent him reeling as his attention had been off.

They end up on the ground, Jimin on top, a wide grin piercing his face. “See? I know how to-“

Jungkook instantly rolls the omega over onto his back, bracing an arm under his chin, locking a leg over both of Jimin’s, successively pinning him down. Jimin tries to push him off, flailing under him until he runs out of strength, finally laying immobile, breathing hard and giving up.

“Overconfidence is the most dangerous form of carelessness.” Jungkook grins down to the omega as their gazes meet, his in victory, Jimin’s in surrender.

As they stare at one another, it dawns on him how pretty the smaller alpha’s eyes really are, a shade of translucent gray, like misty fog over a lake. He’s breathing hard, his chest rising and falling against Jungkook’s, his lips pink and parted. Jungkook stares at them, imagining how nice it would be to kiss and nibble all that plumpness…he instantly looks back up into Jimin’s eyes, feeling odd and guilty for thinking such thoughts. Gathering whatever is left of his wits, he rolls off the smaller male and starts patting grass off his body.

“Come. Let’s try again. You’re tall enough to dig your thumbs into his eyes, let me teach you that.”

Jimin sits up and watches as Jungkook dusts himself off. His body is buzzing with warmth from Jungkook on top of him, from the intense staring, the skin to skin contact. If anyone could blow his cover as an alpha, he fears it would be Jeon Jungkook.

 

--

 

“Wooyoung. Jimin. Forward.”

It takes a bit of prodding from Tae to get Jimin’s feet to start working again.

“Shoulders up, head high. Don’t go down timid!”

He hears Tae’s encouraging speech but it does nothing to bolster him. Still no Joon around, he’d been sent off to hunt with a group who had an injured member.

Jimin trudges slowly to the middle of the grounds, all the other alphas surrounding them in a circle. A circle of death, for him.

He sees Wooyoung crack his huge knuckles, the bone popping sounds almost making him faint. He glances back to his friends one last time, helplessly. Jungkook is watching, arms crossed over his chest while Tae is chomping on a piece of bread, a daisy tucked over one ear, a huge encouraging smile in his direction.

Gulping, Jimin shuffles to a stop in front of Lt. Dongwan.

“Seeing as the stature is seemingly a bit unfair, we’ll drop this fight from 5 minutes to 2 minutes.”

Great, Jimin thinks. He’s gonna die even faster.

“Alphas. Shake hands.”

Jimin watches his hand disappear in Wooyoung’s beefy one. Oh god.

“Ready...set...fight!”

The circle of alphas go crazy around them, cheering and egging them on. Jimin is rooted to the spot for a second and then he’s fleeing, running for his life as Wooyoung chases after him around the formed circle, all thoughts of any kind of standing ground absconding.

“Fight, Jimin!”

He hears Taehyung but he’s too petrified. Wooyoung grabs his vest from behind, stopping him and Jimin feels the breath whoosh out of him as he’s pulled backwards. He twists around quickly, hands and fingers aiming for Wooyoung’s eyes as Jungkook had taught him and Wooyoung, surprised at the attack, drops his hold to make a grab for his sockets as Jimin pokes him there with his thumbs, giving him his second to flee again.

Jimin's running again with semi-blind Wooyoung right at his tail when he suddenly trips on the grass and slides down, hitting the ground with a loud oomph! Before he can even grasp what has just happened, he feels Wooyoung trip over him by kicking him in the ribs before he too, falls. Only...instead of hitting soft ground like Jimin, the big buffoon falls, top first, ungracefully into the wooden post on the side that hosts their camp's flag, his head causing a loud bang! to resound when it strikes the pole.

Jimin looks over, silence falling all around, as Wooyoung's heavy body drops down beside him, knocked out completely.

Then the cheers are reigning, loud and clear, and he’s being picked up by Taehyung as the latter whoops and hollers and jiggles him in his arms.

“You did it Jiminie! I knew you could do it! Instant knockout in less than two minutes!”

He hears Tae scream into his ears as he pushes to be let down.

“Alright, alright. Back to the grounds. The healers will take care of Wooyoung. Next contestants, Kim Taehyung. Lee Woosik. Center. Now.”

Jimin watches as Taehyung walks off with a wink and a proud pat to his head. Everyone else follows suit, except for him, now excited for the next fight. Adrenaline and fear is buzzing through Jimin as he makes his way towards the water well, suddenly needing to drink something. He’s just rounded the corner of the healer’s tent when the world starts spinning and blackness invades his sight.

 

 

Jungkook watches Jimin stumble off, from his distance, as everyone else focuses on the current match; making sure the mini-alpha was okay. He sure has luck on his side, he thinks, smirking at how Jimin had managed to win the brawl.

He looks up again from grinning to see Jimin had disappeared beside the tent, most likely headed to the water well. He leans back a little to make sure he’s correct when a flapping of white cloth on the ground catches his attention.

Backing away from the group, Jungkook starts towards the same corner Jimin had disappeared to...suddenly antsy. He starts running when he realizes the flapping cloth he’d seen is Jimin’s shirt as he’s down, on the ground, unmoving.

“Shit, Jimin…” Jungkook reaches the small body and crouches down, flipping the mini-alpha onto his back, feeling for a pulse. He breathes easier upon finding it, realizing he’d most likely just fainted from shock. Or adrenaline. Most probably both. Jungkook grins softly, realizing this is the alpha’s first fight. Ever. Ahhh. The memories of those days for him.

He shifts and attempts to lift Jimin into his arms to carry him back to their cabin so he can rest a bit. He hears Jimin moan when he touches a spot on his side. Remembering how Wooyoung had fallen, Jungkook curiously lifts up the tunic and gasps at the black and blue mark on the pale skin, most probably made by Wooyoung when he’d tripped over Jimin. Jungkook has seen plenty of bruises and even wounds, but to see it like this, on such tender skin, alpha or not, sits poorly with him.

“Ahhh, shit, mini-alpha. Your victory wasn’t free of cost, was it?” Jungkook lowers his shirt and picks him up, taking him into the healer’s tent instead.

 

 

“Where’s Jimin?”

Jungkook looks up from reading his book as Namjoon walks inside the cabin, fowls and pheasants in his hands. Seems the hunt was a success.

“At the healer’s tent. Tae’s with him now.”

Joon, who’s just about to walk across the room to deposit their dinner on the table, pauses mid-gait. “Healer’s tent?” His head turns to meet Jungkook’s. “ ...Why?”

Jungkook closes his book and sits up straighter in his bunk. He’d detected a note of...concern? Fear? in Joon’s voice and he’s suddenly curious.

“He was called to fight in a brawling match-“

“What?!” Joon’s face, with his bugged out eyes and open mouth, is almost comical.

“He was up against Wooyoung. It was-“

Jungkook’s mouth closes as he sees his best friend sprint out of the cabin, the door slamming shut behind him.

Ok. So that was worry, indeed. Seems everyone has a soft spot for the mini-alpha. He included. Tae had won his fight but he’d pranced around singing and looking for Jimin until Jungkook had let him know Jimin had fainted and then the bugger had picked up an armful of daisies, most likely to present Jimin, and then headed into the direction of the healer’s tent.

Jungkook sighs, laying back in bed. His thoughts veer to the moment he had lifted Jimin’s shirt. The expanse of pale, silky skin, the softness of it...how does an alpha have such smooth skin? Seeing the bruise on there had bothered him a lot more than it should, but he’d scratched it off his mind. Until now. Jimin’ skin is as soft and unblemished as an omegas. He should know, he’s slept with his fair share of them, whether through their heats or his ruts, omega skin is always the softest. But Jimin’s feels almost even more so - which makes no sense. He’s a freaking alpha. Seriously. What are alphas eating out here? Whatever it is, it’s not right.

He sighs, thoughts drifting to another area that also makes no sense. Weightless. The mini-alpha weighed as much as a feather. Jungkook’s probably lifted toddlers heavier than him. But the feeling of Jimin in his arms, his light weight, his soft breath against his neck, head lolling across his shoulder, hair scratching his chin...Jungkook should not have enjoyed it. And if anyone asks, he sure hadn’t.

 

 

Jimin giggles as Namjoon changes his pitch into a feminine tone to match the character in the fable he is reading out loud from. Tae, lying on the bunk above them giggles as well. It’s the day after the brawl and Jimin had woken up disoriented in the healer’s tent but seeing Taehyung and Joon at his bedside had eased him somewhat.

It had been a little on the nippy side tonight and so the alphas had opted to turn in a little early instead of drinking outside with the others. Jimin, sitting on Joon’s bunk next to him, leans over and peers into the book Joon is reading from, trying to see the picture drawn on the bottom of the page.

“Is that a tiger?” he reaches out and points to a dark, striped blob.

Joon nods, leaning in closer to see as well, their heads almost colliding.

Jungkook comes in from visiting his horse to see them in that position, familiar and too damn close. He clears his throat loudly, causing the other two to jump apart, before heading to his bunk to sit and remove his shoes.

He doesn’t like what he’s seeing. Doesn’t like seeing Jimin smile at Joon like that, doesn’t like how close and comfortable Jimin is with Joon, yet unable to even look him in the eyes. Most of all, he doesn’t like how he’s feeling about Jimin.

Earlier, he’d found himself staring at the mini alpha as he’d chased around a butterfly instead of working like everyone else was. Yet, he couldn’t find it in his heart to admonish the small alpha as the scene was just too cute. Plus, he found that he liked seeing Jimin’s smile, how his whole face lights up and his cheeks puff up cutely, causing his eyes to disappear adorably. He can’t even find fault with the crooked little front tooth that is supposed to mar Jimin’s perfectionism but doing just the opposite, causing him to be even more darling.

He looks up as footsteps approach him.

Jimin is standing in front of him with a cup of tea and the tunic he’d passed on to Tae to pass on to Jimin to fix the collar.

“Some tea to help you sleep. And your shirt. It’s been mended.” He says softly, handing out the items.

Jungkook grunts softly and nods in gratitude, lowering his eyes and taking the items from Jimin. Their fingers brush again and the tingle he gets from it just seems to have grown stronger. Jimin smiles at him, that same, pretty, disarming smile before he turns and climbs up his bunk.

Jungkook’s pretty sure he’s screwed, as right now, his heartbeat has just escalated from 10 to 100 and he realizes he’s breaching a point where he can’t even be bothered to care about Jimin’s status as an alpha anymore.

 

--

 

Jimin picks up the last fire log and piles it on top of the pile already in his arms. He’s rather proud of himself for doing so when Tae walks past, arms full of double his amount, whistling.

“Be careful, shorty. It’s only been a few days; you need that bruise to heal.”

Jimin grins back and pats at his side with his free hand. “It’s good now. Ugly, but not much pain.”

As usual, they’d lost another challenge and have to chop and pick up firewood to refill the camp supply. The hilly, 2 mile trek is vigorous and Jimin should be used to it by now, but he’s still the slowest. It’s just the three of them on this punishment, Joon has been assigned to go to town with Lt. Dongwan to pick up and deliver mail.

Jimin’s about a half a mile away when a distant rumbling sounds above. He frowns. It’s going to rain soon and he needs to not get wet. He hastens his steps, only to slow down as Jungkook passes by him. He watches as the big alpha suddenly freezes in his trek before turning around and heading back towards him. Jimin watches with bated breath and big eyes as Jungkook reaches out and takes three logs off and tops them to his load before turning back around to keep walking. No eye contact, no words, nothing is exchanged...but Jimin still finds himself biting his lips to keep from smiling.

Tae had told him that Jungkook had been the one to find him and carry him into the healer’s tent after he’d fainted.

Half of him is glad that he’d been out and unconscious because he’d have been beyond embarrassed. The other half is upset he’d missed the feeling of being carried by Jungkook. His friends at school, especially Seokjin, would faint dead away of they’d found out that Jimin had let an alpha carry him around.

Thankfully, the healers had just patched him up with some plant based salves, wrapped a bandage around his middle and sent him on his way - admonishing him to not strain the area for a few days.

Now, he is feeling a lot more healed, arms able to almost swing back to normal. While he’d been waylaid, unable to participate much in the activities, he’d started mending his holey socks and hemming his pants and Tae had begged him to sew on a button which progressed to Joon asking for a stitch on his sleeves and then, even Jungkook had passed on a tunic to have the neckline stitched up after he’d snagged it on his horse’s saddle.

Jimin looks up as a heavy raindrop pelts his nose. Crap. He’s going to have to find shelter and wait for the rain to past. He’s already had way too many close calls to attempt another pass at fate.

 

--

 

Jungkook drops his last load of logs and then helps Taehyung cover them with the blue tarps.

“Where’s Jimin?”

“I passed by him. He should be coming soon.” Jungkook answers, bending down to tuck the edges of the tarp under a stone to keep it from flying back up.

“Hmmm. Alright. I’m going over to Lieutenant Song’s tent; he’s asked me to help him draft a letter to his omega love.”

Jungkook chuckles. “You?”

“Why not me?! I’m a flower. I write poetry and have written quite a few love letters in my youth.”

Jungkook laughs. Taehyung is so...dramatic. He waves him off and heads into the cabin to get the fire started so Jimin can make his tea when he gets home.

It’s about half an hour later when Jungkook hears the harsh pitter patter of rain on their roof. Still no sign of Jimin and he can’t help the anxious feeling snaking down his spine. He remembers hearing Jimin mutter about hating the rain when he’d had to do dishes under the porch that one day. And knowing him, Jungkook knows he would try to carry his load home, even in the midst of the shower. Deciding he should at least bring Jimin a rain poncho made from the tarp material, he puts one on himself before heading out to help his teammate. He meets with Taehyung at the door.

“I’m gonna go find that mini-alpha.”

Taehyung grins, plucking his daisy out from where it had been sitting behind his ear and tucks it into Jungkook’s belt. “Give him my flower, tell him i think of him, minutes upon the hour~”

Jungkook rolls his eyes and turns towards the path into the woods.

 

--

 

Jimin wants to cry. But he won’t because there’s already too much water around him. The rain isn’t letting up anytime soon and the makeshift alcove he’s sitting under, made of leaves and branches, are drooping so much from the weight of the rain that he’s going to have to abandon his shelter soon.

He’s already decided to leave the firewood where it is until tomorrow and has stepped out into the open, damn the rain, when he hears lightning strike, splitting a branch off the tree he’d just been sitting under. Jimin screams as the branch falls down directly upon him, the leaves and twigs piling over him, knocking him unto the muddy ground.

He sputters, trying to scoot out from under the branches but slips back down unto his back, the rain pelting his face, the mud too slippery and wet. Jimin wiggles his toes to make sure he can still feel his lower body and sighs in relief when he realizes he’s okay, just stuck.

But he needs to get out of the rain before he drowns in it. Jimin rises up on his arms and attempts to pull himself out, only to fail miserably again.

Tired and defeated after another few unsuccessful tries, he lies back and lets the rain hit him in the face while he gathers every last bit of strength before making another attempt.

“Jimin! Jimin-ah, are you out here?”

Jimin’s eyes snap open. Is he dreaming or did he just hear Jungkook’s voice?

“Ji-”

“Here! Jungkook, over here!” he starts screaming at the top of his lungs, praying Jungkook can hear him through the heavy rain.

There's a moment of stillness, with only the rain as the music, before Jimin sniffles. He’s just opened his mouth to scream again when he feels strong hands hook under his arms and pull. Jimin flips onto his knees as soon as he’s out from under the branches, arms latching around Jungkook’s form, trying to not get hysterical. He feels Jungkook pat his back and then say:

“Rains coming down too hard, we gotta take shelter. There’s an abandoned barn nearby, let’s go!”

 

--

 

They amble into the dark, dilapidated barn with the roof missing on one side, Jungkook practically carrying a shivering Jimin. They enter a covered stall and he sets Jimin into the corner, kneeling in front of him and tapping his cheek to make sure he’s still conscious. The smaller male is drenched from head to toe, shaking like a leaf in a thunderstorm.

Jungkook slips off his tarp jacket and takes off his fur vest, using it to pat Jimin’s skin dry everywhere he can see.

“Jimin, I need to take your shirt off, ok? You can wear mine; it’s much drier and will keep you warmer.”

He doesn’t wait for an answer, just lifts off Jimin’s wet, tattered tunic, replacing it with his own, the material sagging off the smaller frame. Jungkook walks over to check the other stalls, praying there is some sort of blanket or cape left from the last tenant. His prayer is answered as he finds an old wool blanket, smelling like hay and horses, hanging off a nail peg in an opposite stall. He lifts it up and shakes it vigorously to rid it of any varmints that may have made it it’s home before returning to Jimin and wrapping it around the tired, shivering alpha.

“Jimin, pants have to come off too, they’re wet. I’m going to go find some dry wood, I’ll be back.”

Jungkook shifts through the stalls and finds an old steel plate, most likely used as a horse feeder and a few pieces of dry wood that would make a proper small fire. There’s plenty of tinder nest and even hay he can use to spark a flame utilizing the matches he always carries or, if too wet, the flint and steel pieces from broken saddles left in the barn.

He gets back to find Jimin nodding off, blanket wrapped tightly around his small body. He’s glad to see Jimin had heard him and complied, sodden pants kicked to the side. He stands there for a minute, absorbing the beauty of the other, plump lips softly parted, cheeks wet but still tinged in a pink hue, damp lashes fanning crazily along the top of said cheeks. He looks so tiny and vulnerable and Jungkook’s alpha growls at that thought, a surge of protectiveness emerging.

Not liking where his thoughts are headed, he turns around quickly and scoops up the wet garments, hanging them to dry over the side door. He looks down at his drenched pants legs and shrugs. Nothing a fire wouldn’t fix.

Jungkook lays out the materials, smiling softly to himself when he hears soft snores from behind him. Poor kid.

He piles in the wood and pulls out the matches from his pants pocket, happy they’re damp, but not unusable. He strikes the match and lights the tinder and hay and blows a bit until sparks catch onto the dry wood. Leaning back, Jungkook starts to push the fire tray closer to Jimin when a strong, floral scent invades his senses.

Jungkook freezes, realizing the smell is emanating from behind him...where Jimin is. He turns around slowly, all senses on full alert at the pretty scent. He’s just noticing now, that he can’t detect any of Jimin’s normal, earthy, masculine smell.

Jungkook shifts closer, curious, wondering where this enticing scent is coming from. Jimin shifts in his sleep and the floral musk hits Jungkook full in the face, sending him reeling back, eyes wide, mouth open.

Fucking hell. Park Jimin is an omega.

 

 

—END—

 

next chap teaser: Jimin can faintly recall a few vivid dreams...of fingers brushing through his hair, softly rubbing against his cheeks, tracing his lips, murmurs of encouragement that he’s doing so well, even whispers telling him he’s beautiful. Those had been odd dreams. Odd, but good.

Chapter Text

Jimin stretches, slight light creeping through the slats and into his eyes. His back hurts and he’s in an uncomfortable position on his bed. He shifts and something tickles his nose.

“Tae, stop messing with me,” he swipes at whatever it is; knowing Taehyung is fooling with him again. His hand lands on his bed...only, it feels more like … hay…

Jimin jerks awake, sitting up and gasping as memories from the events of last night bombard him. He peels the heavy blanket off himself, confirming everything as Jungkook’s huge shirt comes into view. Shit...shit shit shit. Did he lose his scent? Jimin sniffs at the shirt and smells only Jungkook’s masculine musk. Dare he hope that Jungkook giving him his shirt and this strongly off-putting, smelly blanket had somehow masked his omega scent?

He looks around and spots his clothing hanging on the side door, dry now. Jungkook is nowhere in sight and Jimin uses this opportunity to get up and change into his own clothes quickly. He’s just laced up his shoes when he smells Jungkook’s familiar scent approaching.

Jimin looks up as the alpha comes into view, vest on, no shirt, looking as masculine as can be with his muscular arms on display.

“Jungkook-ah...tha-thank you. For...coming ba-back for me last night.” he mumbles, scared to look Jungkook in the eyes, scared that the alpha has found out his condition.

“I figured mini-alpha would somehow get himself into some sorta trouble. Now, come on. The rain just stopped a few minutes ago. It’s only the breaking of dawn but we gotta head back, Taehyung is probably about to set out to look for us himself.”

Jimin inwardly breathes out a huge sigh of relief. Seems he’d been right; somehow, Jungkook’s scent had masked his own. He offers up the shirt to the alpha who promptly takes it and flips it over his shoulder before leaving the stall, leaving Jimin to follow behind.

 

--

 

They get back to their cabin and Taehyung flies out the front door, arms wide open to envelope Jimin…only to have Jungkook step in his path and slightly push him off.

Jimin and Tae look at Jungkook in curious surprise.

Jungkook clears his throat before reaching behind him to grab Jimin’s wrist. “He’s been in the cold rain all night Tae; let his body recover before you jump on him.” He marches towards the cabin, pulling a stumbling Jimin along behind him, leaving a confused Tae behind.

Inside the cabin interior, they meet with Namjoon, who immediately walks over and grabs Jimin by the shoulders, looking him up and down, concern etched along the frown lines around his mouth. “I heard from Tae you got stuck out there. You okay, Jiminie?”

Jimin nods resolutely and attempts to pull his wrist from Jungkook’s grasp only to softly gasp as Jungkook tightens his hold and pulls him away from Joon and over to their side of the room.

“Get some rest,” he hears Jungkook grunt, urging him to climb aboard his bunk. He’s not tired at all, but he can see that Jungkook is brooking no kind of argument so he follows the directive, sending a small smile Joon’s way, knowing the reason for his concern but baffled by Jungkook’s current demeanor.

Since when did Jungkook want him to rest? Usually the alpha was first to get up and first to smack Jimin’s ankles to wake him as well, claiming rest is only for the weak and there are no weak alphas in this cabin!

 

--

 

It’s a bright day and Jimin and his team are in the forest, on their mission to find food that isn’t animal-related, as per order of Lt. Dongwan. The sun is bright, air a little nippy, but tolerable and he’s a little bit excited, his basket already filled to the brim with his scavenging of mushrooms and herbs and wild carrots. He’s done this before as a child with his mother so he’s familiar with the edible plants.

His team had split ways and agreed to meet up in an hour back at the entrance of the pathway and Jimin is feeling rather proud of himself. He’s squeamish at the killing of animals, but plants, he can pull them up all day!

Humming, he skips to the front of the path to await the others. He sees a cluster of daisies close by and walks over to pluck some for Taehyung.

Jimin places his basket down into the grass and hunkers down carefully to avoid stepping on any of the blooms. His mind wanders off to Jungkook. The whole last week, after their encounter in the rain, Jungkook had been excessively nice to him. Just last night, the alpha had gone out of his way to retrieve water from the well for their cabin when it had been Jimin’s chore for the week. The day before that, Jimin had lost another challenge for the group and he’d braced himself for the disappointed look he always gets from the alpha…only, oddly enough, this time, Jungkook seemed more concerned with him having scraped his palms on the cement blocks they’d had to carry then he was about their loss. Even Namjoon and Taehyung had kind of scratched their heads at their leader’s attitude.

But the most confounding moment of all is actually a bit before those instances. According to Tae, it had occurred right after Jimin and Jungkook had come back from their adventure in the rain. Jimin can’t remember much…because he was a little out of his mind with a small fever. After he’d gone to lie down, he’d been out. When he’d come to, it had been nearly three days afterwards.

Taehyung had told him that Jungkook had gotten mighty protective of him, almost growling when any other alphas, other than the healers, had come near Jimin. Jungkook had been the one to wipe off his sweat and feed him his medicine and check his temperature. Taehyung was allowed to come by and check on him, as was Joon, but only if Jungkook was present as well. And just this morning, he’d found it so odd when he’d asked Tae for his ointment, only to have Jungkook quickly toss him his minty one, mumbling something about how he doesn’t need two lavender smelling alphas around him.

Tae had questioned him if he knew anything about Jungkook’s attitude change and Jimin had shrugged, absolutely mystified. He doesn’t understand. He doesn’t really remember much of those couple of days. Even Namjoon is stumped, and he’s known Jungkook the longest.

But Jimin can faintly recall a few vivid dreams...of fingers brushing through his hair, softly rubbing against his cheeks, tracing his lips, murmurs of encouragement that he’s doing so well, even whispers telling him he’s beautiful. Those had been good dreams.

He breaks out of his musings as he hears someone call his name. He looks up and grins as Taehyung skips over, sans basket, an armful of herbs and mushrooms, complete with dirty roots, stems and all. Behind him are Namjoon and Jungkook, both carrying their own baskets full of plants. Looks like their mission today is successful.

 

 

Jungkook leans back against the pile of dry firewood, eyes catching upon Jimin’s laughing face immediately through the flickering flames of their evening campfire. He’s laughing at whatever story Namjoon is telling him, small hands rising up to cover his mouth every so often. Beside him, Taehyung is laughing as well.

It’s been a week since Jungkook has been aware of Jimin’s true entity and he’s silently keeping the secret, not exactly sure how to even approach the subject without scaring Jimin. He also doesn’t want anyone else to know, absolutely aware of the imminent danger and threat to Jimin’s life if the secret is revealed. He is super curious about how why and how, especially how. How had Jimin been able to mask his scent so thoroughly? And what had happened to reveal it that evening? He’s heard of witch potions and drugs that can aid in processes like these, but they’re all illegal with ridiculous side-effects. The thought of Jimin going that route…it sends chills down Jungkook’s spine to even think of because consulting with and buying from witches are cause for beheading with no trials under the King’s edict.

Now that he is aware of Jimin’s true status, he is unable to stop his alpha from the rousing, overprotective instincts each time he sees Jimin. He’s told himself to not be so damn obvious but it’s hard when all his alpha wants to do is protect. At least this explains a lot to him, about why Jimin is always so much physically weaker or slower or smaller. He should’ve realized right off that the smaller male was no alpha. Alphas, even little ones, carry themselves differently and have tough bones whereas Jimin is just soft and sweet all over.

He finds himself no longer annoyed by Jimin’s physical failures...instead, he’s absolutely endeared by it somehow. He finds that he dislikes the other alphas near Jimin when he’s not around, finding his alpha growling when they touch Jimin. He’d thought it’d been bad, thinking about Jimin’s beauty when he was alpha...now that he knows Jimin’s an omega, it’s just doubled. Tripled.

During Jimin’s illness, he’d completely taken over as much of the caretaking task as possible, finishing all his missions in record time so that he can come back and check on the omega. He knows he’s probably confusing the hell out of his friends, his protective instincts marching into overdrive each time he’d see Jimin lying so helplessly on his bed, sweating or shivering profusely. He hadn’t meant to, but he’d sidelined both of the other alphas, unhappy when they’d get too near.

At night, when the other two were in bed, Jungkook had stayed up and ran a damp cloth over Jimin’s insipid skin, silently marveling at its softness. He’d trace his fingers along the fine skin and the silky hair, so tempted to lean down and kiss every inch that he can see. Now that Jimin is back to his full health, cheeks pink and skin bright again, his alpha just wants to scratch out and play with the omega.

Jungkook’s alpha has never seriously been so taken with anyone else before so this is all new to him. He only knows that he’s becoming possessive as all hell concerning the younger. Even right now, as Jimin is sitting there, so pretty, giggling at Namjoon, he has to fight the urge to walk over and pull him away. He wants Jimin to smile and laugh and look at him that way. That same way he’s looking at Namjoon.

He tamps down the uneasy growl that tries to surface at that thought. No. No, Jimin and Joon are just friends…Joon doesn’t know he’s an omega.

Or if he does. He’s doing a spectacular job hiding it.

Jungkook freezes, his mind whirling back to all the other instances when Joon had covered for Jimin. Could it be…?

“Jungkook-ah, it’s time to get some rest – you can continue your dreams of Jongseo with your eyes closed!”

Jungkook looks up as Taehyung nudges his foot. He realizes the guys have already killed the flames and cleaned up as bedtime is fast approaching.

“Who’s Jongseo?” Jimin asks as he approaches Taehyung.

“Ahhh…Jongseo. Yoo Jongseo…he’s the prettiest omega in our pack. Tall, golden brown hair and willowy, but so very pretty. And a lot snobby. He’s in love with our handsome Jungkook.” Taehyung giggles and walks inside the cabin, completely missing Jungkook’s scowl and Jimin’s uncomfortable expression.

Jungkook hops onto his feet, grunting at Jimin as the latter shoots him a small smile before following Tae. He can sense the awkwardness take over his being, completely burying his usual suave confidence. It’s gotten so bad now that he finds himself usually just watching Jimin from afar, unable to make eye contact for fear that the omega would figure out that he knows his secret.

“Jungkook-ah, can I borrow a shirt? All mine are still hanging out on the line and I don’t wanna go get them yet…”

Jungkook nods at Tae’s request, pushing the door closed behind him. He sees Namjoon is sitting on his bed, doing his last minute reading and Jimin is already in his bunk, under the covers. Cute.

He turns and latches the door, kicking the floor sealer Jimin had made over to cover the outside draft from coming in. He’s walking towards his bunk when he sees Taehyung reach over for the shirt by his pillow. He panics.

“No Taehyung, not that one!”

Shuffling is heard in the silence as Jimin flips over on his bunk and peeks out at him from beneath his blanket and Joon looks up from his pamphlet, startled. Jungkook turns warm, unbelieving that he’d just almost bellowed.

He stomps over to his bunk, picks up one of the white tunics from the foot of his bed and throws it at a very surprised and frozen Tae before pulling away the one in Tae’s hand and tossing it back on his pillow.

“That one’s…dirty,” he murmurs, turning away to sit down and pull off his boots.

“Oh.” Taehyung shrugs and then heads back to his bunk, undressing along the way.

Jungkook flips down unto his back. Above him, he hears Jimin scoot around getting comfortable again.

“Goodnight everyone. See you tomorrow,” he hears Jimin call out softly as usual. And then Taehyung and Joon say their goodnights back to him while Jungkook keeps mum. As usual. Another kind trait that should’ve indicated that Jimin was omega right off, missed.

Jungkook patiently waits until Joon finally blows out his candle and settles into bed and his snoring has started before he reaches over for the tunic Tae had almost taken away. He brings the material up to his face and takes a deep breath. The faint scent of sunny floral notes is still there, addictive and heavenly. Ever since Jimin had returned it back to him at the dilapidated barn, he’d not washed it, keeping it under his pillow. He knows this may sound so creepy but there is just a warmth and comfort to Jimin’s omega scent that he’s never smelled on anyone else before and he likes it. Maybe too much.

His mind wanders back to his interrupted thought from earlier. Did Namjoon know Jimin’s secret? It would explain a lot.

His best friend is very perceptive, Jungkook knows that. It takes a lot for anything to get past Namjoon and even when it does, it only takes him a little while later to figure it out. Why wouldn’t Joon tell him? Why would he hide it this far? He decides the only way to get those questions answered, will be to become a keen observer himself.

 

--

 

Jimin empties the fresh bucket of well water into his own tin pail sitting on the ground before dropping the wooden one back into its flowing cradle. He’s looking forward to making some tea tonight and drink it as he convinces Namjoon to read him another fable.

Carrying the small bucket, Jimin scurries off and turns the corner of the healer’s cabin, hoping to get to the front before Taehyung finishes his dishwashing duty so they can walk back together. He gasps as he suddenly collides with what feels like a stone wall, drops of water sloshing out of the tin pail and wetting the front of his tunic. Glancing up, Jimin freezes, realizing that it’s Jang Wooyoung, not a wall, and that the alpha has also born most of the splash as his whole front is drenched.

Jimin gulps as he looks up into the dark, scowling face. He looks very unhappy.

“Well. If it isn’t the runt who beat me by pure luck.”

“Uh…sorry? Are you feeling better?”

“I think we need to have another match, don’t you?”

Jimin gasps as Wooyoung knocks the tin pail out of his hand. He watches as it clatters onto the grass, the remaining contents dribbling out as fast as Jimin wants to run.

“What say you, runt? Should we try again?”

Jimin starts backing away slowly, not wanting to rile up the angry alpha anymore until he can distance himself enough to take off. But Wooyoung seems to have figured out his intent for he quickly reaches out and grabs Jimin’s shoulders in his beefy hands, pulling the smaller male right back up close to him.

“Nice try, runt. However, no more running. We’re gonna settle this correctly and fairly this time, alpha to alpha.”

 

--

 

Jungkook pats Thunder’s long nose affectionately, smiling as he gets a loud huff back in return. He pats his fingers over the smooth, tiny hairs, marveling at the sleekness of the animal. Jungkook loves his horse, Thunder has saved his butt countless times.

“Rest well, love. I can’t wait ‘til camp is over so we can ride with the wind again,” he murmurs softly, giving the beast one last pat over the nose before he turns to leave.

Jungkook latches the barn door behind him before taking off into the direction of his cabin. He hears scuffling a few cabins over, but he pays no mind, knowing that some of the other alphas are probably out cleaning or meeting up to chit chat or just out exercising.

He wonders if Jimin is making his tea yet and if he can ask for a cup as well. Maybe he should be nice and bring Jimin some more water…that would definitely make the omega smile. Jungkook grins a little at that thought; internally shaking his head at himself for finding any chance he can to get closer to Jimin.

He turns directions, heading to the well to pick up a pail of water. As he gets closer to the side of the healer’s tent, the scuffle he’d heard earlier becomes louder, piquing his interest. Jungkook rounds the bushes on the corner and freezes, his body suddenly tightening, hands squeezing into fists as he spots Jang Wooyoung holding Jimin’s small form up to his own in a menacing grip, his face aggressively close to Jimin’s. The way Jimin is flinching and pushing back, Jungkook knows immediately he’s being threatened.

With a low growl, Jungkook starts forward, his alpha riled up that someone dare endanger his omega.

 

--

 

Jimin pushes away as far as possible from the alpha, his scent too strong as well as bad, struggling to break free of the gripping hold.

Suddenly, he stops as another presence comes upon them and he feels warmth against his back. Jimin knows who it is immediately, recognizing the minty scent right off. They both stop struggling and Wooyoung instantly lets go with a small push, Jimin reeling backwards into Jungkook who reaches out to steady him before promptly pushing him behind his broad back.

“What’s your problem, Wooyoung?”

“None of your business, alpha. The runt and I were just discussing another match.”

Jungkook scoffs. “You’ve already been beaten. Fair and square.”

“Hey. What’s going on here?”

Jimin whirls to the new voice, relief flooding over him once again as Taehyung approaches the small group.

“Looks like the runt has all kinds of backup.”

Jungkook’s eyes narrow at Wooyoung. “He’s a part of my team, Jang Wooyoung. As team leader, I am responsible for him. If you have any concerns, come to me. If you approach him again in any way, I will not be responsible for my actions with you.”

Jimin shrinks back as Woyuong’s eyes land on him. Taehyung levels an arm around his shoulder and pulls him close to his side as he eyes the scum alpha himself, ready to defend his little friend at all costs.

Wooyoung finally grunts and walks away, knowing he has lost.

“Jiminie? You okay, kitty?”

Jimin nods and turns to look up at Taehyung, who is frowning down at him in concern.

“What an ass. Don’t you worry, kitten. You beat him fair and square. It’s not your fault he’s fought with and lost to the flag pole.”

Jimin giggles softly at Tae’s remark before turning to Jungkook. “Thank you, Jungkook.”

Jungkook pulls Jimin forward and out of Tae’s embrace as they start walking. “If he ever comes near you again, let me know. I don’t take kindly to idiots who only know brute strength.”

“Okay.” Jimin trudges along and then suddenly stops with a small gasp. “My water pail! I was gonna make us all tea tonight but Wooyoung knocked it out of my hands!”

“You guys go on back. I’ll go get more.”

Taehyung takes off before the other two can say anything.

“Come on Jimin, let’s go back. I’ll get the fire started for you.”

“Really. Thank you, Jungkook. I’m sorry I suck so much and am so weak compared to-“

“Jimin, you remind me of a quote my omma has told me before: A flower does not think of competing with the flower growing next to it. It just simply blooms. Think of us all as flowers, if you’d like. We all get watered the same and planted the same way, but sometimes we all bloom differently, perhaps even in different colors. What matters is not any of that, just the fact that we are. Don’t waste time comparing yourself to others. You are your own person for a reason.”

Jimin’s mouth drops in awe. Who knew that Jeon Jungkook, alpha warrior and team leader, had such a wondrous mind? It does make him feel better about his shortcomings somehow.

“Besides. You help out a lot already. The mending, the teas, the cooking. It’s all a team effort, right?”

Jimin finds himself melting as Jungkook smiles at him. His cheeks light up and his ears burn red as he bites his bottom lip and turns away, afraid that Jungkook would be able to see everything on his face. He feels his heartbeat kick up and knows this can’t be good for his health, his knees so weak.

Oh, this is just more of what he can’t have, he thinks as Jungkook places a palm behind his shoulder to propel him forward.

 

--

 

Jungkook’s suspicions on Namjoon knowing about Jimin are confirmed the next few days as he plays along somewhat.

He sees Namjoon quickly usher them all, except for Jimin, out of the cabin after Jimin spills tea all over himself – most likely so that he has privacy to change.

He sees Namjoon throw out excuses whenever he can to cover Jimin from having to go into the lake or from getting too harsh of a punishment from the commanding lieutenants.

It’s in the evening, after Taehyung and Jimin have left for kitchen duties that Jungkook gets a minute alone with his best friend in their cabin.

“Joon.”

“Hey, Jungkook. You wanna-“

“You…know.”

“Huh?”

“I know. As well.”

 

--

 

Namjoon sighs, settling his back against the bunk pole. Jungkook had just got done telling his story of how he’d found out about Jimin’s secret, after he’d told his.

He’s always known he could never hide stuff from Jungkook. This just proves it.

“What gave me away?”

“You know I know you as well as you do me. Your demeanor with Jimin…changes. For others, it’s not noticeable. With me, it’s hard not to notice. Your face becomes as pale as Jimin’s each time something having to do with water comes up.”

Joon lets out a laugh with no real humor. “Not sure if you’ve figured it out yet, but Jimin can’t get wet. If his whole body gets submerged, the potion wears off and for two hours, the alpha stench gives way to his natural omega scent.”

Across, at his own bunk, Jungkook cocks his head at the information, absorbing it. That explains Jimin’s trepidation with bathing and rain. He’s just glad to know his first assumption that Jimin doesn’t care to bathe is proven false.

“Does Tae know?”

“No. And we should leave it at that. For now.”

Jungkook smirks. “He’s going to kick up a storm when he does learn later.”

“That he will,” Joon agrees, stifling a grin at the thought of Tae’s puppy-dog expressions.

“I’m kinda glad you know, though.”

“Oh? Why’s that?”

“All those intense, murderous looks you kept sending me were really starting to scare me. At least now you can understand and help me with covering up Jimin’s secret.”

Jungkook huffs out a small laugh, shaking his head at his obvious behavior.

“I don’t like Jimin like that, just so you know.”

“Wha-“

“You can’t fool me, alpha. I was trying to figure out if I should tell you the truth or not just so you’d realize I’m protecting the omega, not in love with him. If looks could kill, I’d have dagger knives in my gut.”

Jungkook feels his body warm up. He wasn’t aware he was so fucking obvious.

“Jungkook…”

Jungkook looks at Joon again when he hears his friend hesitate.

“I…I’m not sure how to approach this subject but Jimin has become a friend. I’m rather fond of him, as is Tae. If you’re not serious, please don’t hurt him. He’s sweet and delicate and deserves a mate who’d-“

Jungkook’s growl stops him.

“You should know me better than that, Joon.”

“I do, Jungkook. But I’ve also seen you go through your fair share of omegas and betas and-“

“It’s different with Jimin, Joon. Don’t worry. My alpha just wants to protect, protect, protect. It’s never happened before.”

Joon sighs. “Okay. Good.” He gets up and stretches. “Jungkook.”

“Hmm?”

“Do we tell Jimin that you know too?”

“We’re going to have to. Let’s wait for the right moment.”

Turns out, the right moment came a lot sooner than they’d expected.

 

--

 

next chap teaser: Jimin hums softly to himself as he lathers up the soap in his hands. The moon is up, bright and pretty, lending enough light to illuminate his usual part of the lake in a pretty glow. He stays as close to the edge as possible, hidden behind a few boulders where the water hits just below his clavicles.

Jimin stops humming as soon as he hears a noise in the forest. His heart thumps heavily in his chest when he hears what sounds like footsteps closing in on where he’s at.

 

----

Chapter Text

Jimin grips the side of the canoe so hard his fingertips turn white. Besides the fact that he can’t get wet, he also cannot swim and should either of them happen, they both also result in death so he figures he must’ve pissed off some great God somehow to be in this lose-lose situation.

In the front, Jeon Jungkook is facing him, rowing the canoe, watching him hold his breath motionlessly and trying not to move so as to not encourage tipping over of any kind.

Lt. Dongwan would find a way to get Jimin into the lake, it seems. This evening, he’d ordered Jimin and Jungkook to cross the river and pick up some tenting supplies for their next activities and Jimin, being on the Lieutenant’s radar after all those excuses, had been unable to say no.

Jungkook had loaded their canoe with supplies earlier while Jimin had been off to the side, frozen, as Namjoon tried to comfort him…that Jimin will be fine, he’s going to be in a canoe and that Jungkook is great in the waters, both as a sailor and a swimmer so he shouldn’t worry. Of course, that appeased Jimin to no end and he’d finally, nervously, settled inside the canoe with Tae’s assistance.

“You’re okay, Jimin. Breathe. Water is not too deep in this lake. I’ve swam in it plenty of times.”

Jimin slowly peers up at Jungkook as he finally speaks. The alpha’s round, dark eyes are on him steadily, calmly, yet unnerving at the same time and Jimin almost squirms, feeling like Jungkook knows his every secret. No wonder he’s such a leader, he thinks. Jimin would hate to be interrogated by him. He’d probably pee his pants and squeal out everything, even things unasked, like his favorite color.

At that absurd thought, he giggles softly.

“Feeling better?”

Jimin lets loose another giggle and nods when he gets a smile back as well.

“Who-who has this tenting stuff?””

“There’s a cabin on the other side. The crew locks supplies there until needed so as to not overcrowd the campgrounds as well as to keep them dry and out of the rains. Lieutenant Dongwan gave me the key for the padlocks.”

“Oh.” Jimin hadn’t been aware of that. Silence reigns again as they stare off into their own distances.

“Jungkook, what’s your favorite color?” Jimin finally decides to break the quietness.

“Huh?”

“Do you have a favorite color?”

“Color?” Jungkook is taken aback by the odd question.

“Yes. Like…I love yellow. It’s the color of the sun and happiness.”

Jungkook blinks. Then chuckles softly. Cute. Why is this omega so damn adorable? “Blue. I like it because it is the same color as the pond I grew up around and it’s also the color of my omma’s eyes.”

“Ohhh…” Jimin coos. That’s so sweet, he thinks.

“Do you have siblings?”

“No. I’m the only child. My mother bled too much after she had me so our healer explained that she cannot have anymore or she’d die. Omma had wanted at least one more…it’s always expected for chiefs to have more than one child since an alpha is always expected….but appa was adamant that omma follow the healer’s instructions. Thankfully, I ended up being an alpha son.”

“Ahhh. Luck, indeed.” Jimin agrees, thinking the Gods were pretty kind to Jungkook, supplying him with the stature, the looks, the strength, even the status of both future chief and alpha. And, he grudgingly admits, kindness as well. Jungkook has been very nice to him lately.

“So. Jungkook. Do you already have a mate waiting for you back home?” Jimin asks, half hoping he says yes, half hoping he says no. Yes, just so Jimin can get over his little crush and no because Jimin has a little crush.

“I do not. Not yet.”

“Ahhh.”

“You?”

“Me?”

“You.”

“Ummm…no…not really…”

He’s thinking of how to answer this question when a huge drop of water suddenly hits the tip of his nose. He wipes it off in confusion until he feels more splatters against his shoulders.

Oh…dear god. A misfortune he hadn’t even thought of. Rain.

Jimin starts panicking. He can’t get wet here, god no! Not with Jungkook!

Jungkook feels the gentle pitter patter on his head and looks up. Shit, rain. His gaze automatically swings over to Jimin, whom he knows must be all sorts of panicked. He’s right as the other starts fidgeting.

“Jimin…calm down, we’re only a little ways from the shore…you’ll be okay, I prom - Jimin!” Jungkook’s calmness vanishes as does his sentence as, in the middle of Jimin trying to pull out the blue tarp from under the loaded supplies, causes the canoe to dip heavily to one side. Jungkook drops his oars and reaches over to assist, but alas, it is too late and he watches dazedly as Jimin tips over, head first, into the lake.

Jungkook pauses, still in shock, for moments, only to see Jimin rise back up and sputter, flailing his arms. It takes a second for Jungkook to register through the garbled sounds Jimin is making that he’s saying he can’t swim. And then, Jungkook is on his feet, diving into the water after the omega.

Jimin flails about, eyes closed, wondering if this is how he is going to die when he feels strong arms around his middle. Gasping, he blindly grabs on, praying that is Jungkook, thanking the lord when he realizes the broad shoulders he’s clinging onto can’t be anyone else’s. Jimin, eyes closed, buries his face into the alpha’s neck, arms in a death grip around the other’s shoulders. He locks his legs around Jungkook’s middle as well, refusing to budge.

“Hey, hey…you’re okay..”

Jungkook softens his voice reassuringly when he hears the small sniffle. Jimin is clinging onto him like a koala to its tree and he doesn’t mind at all. They’re very close to shore as Jungkook can almost stand up in the water, but he is aware of how scared someone can be in the position the omega is in – hiding a secret water can dispel as well as not knowing how to swim.

Jungkook can feel the other’s trembling against him as the rain falls softly around them. He turns and wades through the mass of water slowly until he gets to water around his thigh height.

“Jiminie, go wait on the shore for me, okay? I have to go back for the canoe and the supplies.” He starts to loosen his hold, only for Jimin to tighten his. And then, it’s as if he suddenly remembers his position and he quickly lets go, sliding down and moving away, avoiding Jungkook’s eyes. Jungkook turns back around to retrieve their boat.

When he’s dragged the canoe to shore, he ties the anchor around a tree, pulls out their backpack of supplies and turns to find Jimin standing under a banana tree, her big leaf lending itself as shelter from the rain. His arms are folded across his middle and he’s looking at anywhere but Jungkook, miserable and a mess, chewing at his bottom lip. Jungkook thinks he looks absolutely beautiful. Instead of walking over, as he wants to, he turns and motions Jimin to follow him up to the cabin sequestered along the side of the hill. The rain is falling harder and if it keeps up, Jungkook knows they’re going to have to take shelter in the supplies cabin. He notices that Jimin is lagging behind, purposefully. But it doesn’t hinder his scent. It’s soft and fresh and just as lovely and enticing as Jungkook had remembered it to be. He fists his hands, the urge to turn and pull the omega into his arms strongly forthcoming.

Jungkook unlocks the cabin doors and pushes them open, walking inside simultaneously. He drops the two backpacks onto the ground and waits for Jimin to enter before closing and locking the doors from inside.

“Look, there are extra staff uniforms in here. We can change into them while your clothes dry.” Jungkook flips open a box labeled clothes and pulls out a loose tan tunic…and shorts. Shit, these are summer uniforms. He digs deeper, but finds that they’re all the same: tunics and shorts and a couple vests and hats.

Still, he hands them over to Jimin and rummages through another box, smiling when he finds a threadbare cotton sheet and random pillow cases. He pulls out the sheet and passes it to Jimin as well.

“Change. Wrap yourself up in this. We can’t start a fire in here so hopefully this will keep you warm. I’m going back down to pick off a few of those bananas so we can eat. I’ll be back.” He doesn’t give Jimin a chance to say anything as he quickly leaves.

Jungkook purposefully stays out for 15 minutes, giving Jimin ample time to change in privacy. He’s just reached the double doors again when they swing open, Jimin’s frantic gaze meeting his.

“What? Are you okay?”

“Ye-yes. I just…you were gone so long.” He pouts and Jungkook almost coos. He’s got the sheet wrapped around him, over his head, half of it dragging on the floor behind him. His bare legs and small feet peep out from the edges and Jungkook has to force himself to look away.

He clears his throat and walks in, arms loaded with bananas. Behind him, he hears Jimin close and latches the doors again. Jungkook drops the bananas on top of a box and then heads over to the side table to light the small hurricane lanterns, most likely used to search for items after dark. He blows out the matches once the flames burn bright and he latches tightly the tiny glass doors to keep the flames from snuffing out. It’s getting dark outside and without these, pretty soon, the cabin would be doused in darkness as well.

“Are you going to change too?”

He turns to see Jimin looking him up and down. He’s sopping wet, the rain coming down even harder now than it had been earlier. Jungkook nods, trying to think clearly when the whole freakin’ cabin smells like flowers and rain. Ironic how that is.  As he pulls out articles to change as well, he sees Jimin head over to the opposite wall and sit down against it, wrapping the sheet around him securely, his gaze looking out through the small open window of the cabin.

He walks as far into the darkened corner as possible to change, keeping his back to Jimin. Afterwards, he slides down against the opposite wall, goosebumps rising on his skin as the chill in the cabin settles now that he’s not moving around so much anymore. It’s quiet in the habitat; the only sounds are the whistling of the hurried winds and the pelting of the heavy rain against the cabin. Jungkook closes his eyes and leans his head back, breathing deeply in Jimin’s calming essence. The floral notes are so pretty and fresh and he knows the omega is trying to hide it by minimal movements, but it’s no use. The scent is as obvious as the distance between them.

“Why aren’t you saying anything?”

Jungkook’s eyes snap open at the small voice interrupting the ten minutes of silence. He tilts his head down to look over to Jimin. His eyes are wide and Jungkook can feel the nervousness he is projecting. He sighs reluctantly.

“Because I already know.”

“What?”

Jungkook looks across at Jimin’s wide-eyed expression of shock, rubbing a hand through his hair. “I know you’re an omega, Park Jimin.”

“Oh…” Jimin’s so shocked that is the only word he can manage. And then, “What…wait…how?!”

“I…uh, I figured it out the night we got stuck out in the barn. Joon confirmed it when I asked him. Don’t get mad at him – I made him tell me.”

“Oh.”

Jungkook hears the soft word, not sure how to decipher it because Jimin is kind of just…staring at him, eyes still wide, gnawing at his lower lip. There’s another long moment of silence. And then, Jungkook watches as Jimin slowly rises from his position and moves across the room, dragging the long sheet until he’s sliding down right beside him.

He looks on, eyebrow raised as Jimin starts arranging the blanket around them both, the overwhelming scent of pretty florals titillating his senses. When Jimin looks up to him, he is surprised to see the omega with a small smile.

“Then there’s no sense in you getting cold. We may as well share the blanket.”

Jungkook shakes his head. “I didn’t expect this reaction from you. Joon told me you were all kinds of panicked. You’re not afraid I’d tell?”

“Nope.” Jimin grins now. “If you’d wanted to, I understand you’d have done so already. If there’s anything with your Jeon Pack alphas, it’s that you take your friendships seriously. And I think we can call ourselves friends, right?”

Jungkook wants to laugh. How is he so cute? Jimin looks down and continues arranging their blanket, a smile hovering over his pretty lips. It’s almost too much for him to bear and before he can stop himself, Jungkook’s mouth is already uttering a question.

“What if…what if I don’t want us to be friends?”

Jimin freezes. “What?” he asks quietly, smile gone, panicked gaze rising to Jungkook’s.

Jungkook decides to just shoot for the stars. He reaches over and cups Jimin’s face in his hands. The cheeks feel so warm and soft against his skin.

“What if…I want to be more than friends?”

Jimin stares back, the panic in his eyes replaced with shock. Jungkook muffles a grin as Jimin suddenly reaches up and places the back of his small hand against his forehead. “Are you alright, Jeon Jungkook? Falling ill?”

Jungkook smiles. “Falling, yes. Sick, no.”

Jimin starts to return his smile until he catches on to Jungkook’s words. Then his bottom lips drops and he slowly lowers his hand, wide, surprised, eyes trained on the dark orbs looking back at him. He lets out a small gasp when Jungkook takes a hold of his wrist, pulling it back and flattening his palm against his chest, right over his palpitating heart.

There’s tenderness in Jungkook’s gaze Jimin has never seen before and it pierces him fiercely, causing his own heart to hammer ferociously in return as he feels the wild fluttering of Jungkook’s against his skin. He doesn’t know what the heck is happening, but had he been able to, he wouldn’t stop it either. The draw between them feels so profound, raw and enchanted and Jimin is nothing if not a romantic at heart. He waits, breath quickening and eyelids lowering as Jungkook lowers his head, touching their noses together. Then he feels Jungkook’s lips against his own, feather-soft and light, yet triggering a storm in his being, causing his flattened palm to curl into a small fist, as if to stop himself from flying away.

“I’ve wanted to do that even before I found out you were an omega,” he hears Jungkook whisper against his ear.

“You…did?” he asks breathlessly, still in a daze.

“Mmm. You’ve bewitched me somehow. Your spirit, your kindness, your beauty. I feel I’ve become your slave.”

Jimin giggles at the nonsensical words, wrapping his arms around Jungkook’s middle and pressing his face into the broad neck. He inhales and Jungkook’s minty essence flows through him. He can’t help thinking that this is the best scent he’s ever smelled.

Jungkook does the same, burying his nose into Jimin’s silky tresses, inhaling his fresh, natural scent, unable to get enough. He feels like a few burdens have lifted off of him; the fact that Jimin is an omega and that Jimin feels the same towards him are things he’d worried about but now…now they just have to make it through the last two weeks of camp.

 

--

 


The rumbling of thunder outside jerks Jimin awake from his slumber. He feels a hand rub at his upper arm consolingly and he realizes that he’d fallen asleep with his cheek against Jungkook’s shoulder, pressed into his side like an interlocked puzzle piece.

To make sure he hadn’t dreamed everything, he lifts his head up and meets Jungkook’s steady gaze. Jimin blushes pink, biting his lips and dipping his head again in shyness, yet curling even more against the alpha. He feels Jungkook’s chest rumble as he chuckles and pulls him in even closer.

He sees through the window that it’s still dark outside. Jungkook had relit the lamps and they cast a yellowish glow in the room, enough to see but enough to not blind them either. He feels Jungkook’s lips press against the top of his head and his heartbeat immediately escalates. Is this what it feels like to fall in love?

“Are you hungry?”

Jimin shakes his head at the question and sits up, adjusting the blanket around him, mindful to not take it away from Jungkook. “No, just a little cold.”

“Come here. I’ll keep you warm.” Jungkook pulls the blanket down and opens his legs, patting the space in between for Jimin to scoot in. Once he does, Jungkook pulls the blanket back over them both.

“Ohhh…you’re so warm.” Jimin squirms back into the warmth, unable to see the small grimace across Jungkook’s face as his bum pushes up against the alpha’s crotch.

Jungkook shuts his eyes while Jimin gets comfortable, wriggling around to adjust his contours to his own. Finally, when he is satisfied, Jungkook opens his eyes and breathes a small sigh of relief, hands smoothing the blanket over Jimin’s knees.

Jimin gasps as he sees a small cut on the back of Jungkook’s right hand. He immediately grasps it, bringing it up closer to inspect it.

“What happened?”

Jungkook shrugs. “I didn’t even notice that.”

“Jungkook-ah, you gotta be more careful.” Jimin admonishes. But Jungkook is busy doing his own inspection.

“Your hands are so tiny. So cute.”

Jimin closes them, dropping Jungkook’s hand. “I thought you didn’t like them so small?”

Jungkook chuckles. “That was when i thought you were an alpha. My mom used to tell me, as an alpha, your natural biology sends all your strength to your hands and feet to physically be able to protect what’s yours. As an omega, your strength mostly lie within your heart so your hands and feet are smaller. It’s in how we are made.” He traces a finger along the back of one of Jimin’s closed hands until he opens his fist and flips it over, allowing Jungkook to notch their fingers together. He brings it up and presses a kiss to Jimin’s knuckles, eliciting a pink flush from the younger.

Jimin turns away slightly to hide his burgeoning smile, liking that quote from Jungkook’s omma. It’s very indicative of their entities as alpha and omega.

“But you know…I think you’re amazing, Jimin. Though you’re small and soft all over, your heart is full and courageous, like a flower that perseveres, even in the most volatile of tempests. I don’t know anyone who’d go this far to help out a friend in need. Dangerous and foolish, yes, but also quite commendable.”

Jimin smiles widely up at him, preening under the compliments, cheeks blushing pink, and Jungkook coos softly at the utter cuteness. He’s so smitten, he can feel it down to his toes.

Unable to help himself, Jungkook leans down and presses their lips together. He smiles to himself, feeling Jimin’s apparent innocence in his hesitant response. Jungkook isn’t deterred though, he just continues to pluck softly at the plumpness, licking, nibbling, teasing until Jimin’s breathing is almost harried and his hands are clutching at Jungkook’s shoulder blades, uncaring of the fact that his blanket has pooled down around his waist.

Jungkook deepens the kiss, putting pressure onto the soft lips until they open and then licking into the cavern, fingers coming to rest on the trim waist, flexing amongst the folds of the thin tunic.

He hears Jimin moan softly into the kiss, his own tongue mimicking Jungkook’s and coming out to play as he twists completely and rises on his knees, pressing his body into Jungkook’s, arms winding around his shoulders.

Jungkook’s lips trace an ardent path down the pale column of Jimin’s neck, his breathing forceful as he inhales Jimin’s addictive scent. He notices that it’s starting to fade and he softly growls at that thought, wanting Jimin to smell like this all the time.

Jimin must’ve felt his growl because he suddenly pauses and whispers out a breathless, “What?”

Jungkook grunts, but peers up into the omega’s glazed eyes. “Your scent. It’s disappearing.”

Jimin giggles. “Should I go stand in the rain?”

“No!” Jungkook sullenly pouts, brows drawing together.

“Awww,” Jimin coos at Jungkook acting cute. He tilts his head down and presses a kiss to the alpha’s nose. “I’m still me…even without my scent.”

“I know. It’s just…I like it. A lot.”

“You’re so cute,” Jimin coos.

“I am not cute.”

“Yes you are,” Jimin giggles against Jungkook's lips.

“I’ll teach you to call me names, omega,” Jungkook threatens adorably before capturing Jimin’s soft lips in another kiss that sends sparks down to his toes.

--

 


Jungkook watches Jimin through the flames as he stands by Taehyung’s bunk whilst they bicker. It’s been a few days since they’ve returned and each day, he finds it harder and harder to keep his hands off the omega. His eyes, even harder. Joon would have to nudge him constantly to remind him to “put away the heart-eyes” as he so kindly puts it.

At least he’s not alone. Jimin is not that much better either, hands always sneaking out to quickly touch him when they pass each other in the cabin, or if the other two’s backs are turned.

Jungkook lies down on his bunk, hiding a yawn behind his hand. He’s had a long day, taking down two sparring matches with other alphas and then hunting with his team for food has completely exhausted him. Their big dinner of peasants and veggies has left him full and satisfied. He closes his eyes to rest for two seconds.

--

 


Jimin stares at the ceiling, finally moving when he hears Taehyung’s snore. He quietly climbs down his bunk and reaches for the little bundle he’d tied up earlier before laying down. It included his clean change of clothes and his soap bar.

He looks down fondly at Jungkook’s sleeping face, tamping down his immediate urge to reach out and touch him, kiss him. He looks so tired and Jimin knows he needs his rest. He turns and tiptoes to the backdoor, the need to bathe beckoning him.

--


Jimin hums softly to himself as he lathers up the soap in his hands. The moon is up, bright and pretty, lending enough light to illuminate his usual part of the lake in a pretty glow. He stays as close to the edge as possible, hidden behind a few boulders where the water hits just below his clavicles.

Jimin stops humming as soon as he hears a noise in the forest. His heart thumps heavily in his chest when he hears what sounds like footsteps closing in on where he’s at. Jimin slowly moves towards the boulder, hoping it can shield him enough from whoever else is coming out here at this time. He closes his eyes, suddenly feeling even colder than he did wading into the water earlier.

“Jimin?”

Jimin’s eyes snap open at the voice. “Jung-Jungkook?” He quickly moves away to spot the alpha standing on the boulder right over him.

“Hey.” Jungkook crouches down as Jimin moves forward again, reaching over to smack the alpha’s knee.

“You scared me!”

“I’m sorry. I woke up and you were gone and I figured this is where you were coming. Why didn’t you wake me up so I can come with you?”

“You looked tired. I didn’t have the heart to disturb your rest.” Jimin pouts and Jungkook smilingly coos, all his defenses so easily shattered around the omega.

“Finish your bath. I’ll keep watch from here.” Jungkook lowers to sit on the boulder turning so his back is to Jimin.

Smiling softly, Jimin melts at his sweetness, but hurriedly cleans himself as the wind is picking up. When he’s done, he quickly runs to shore and dries himself off, unaware of the pair of eyes sneaking small glances at him.

He slides his tunic on and turns around to gather his belongings, stuffing them into the damp cloth and tying the corners into a center knot to carry back to their cabin. As he straightens up, he smells Jungkook’s minty essence as he approaches. Jimin barely manages to look up before Jungkook’s enveloping him into his arms, dipping his head and pressing their lips together.

“I’ve missed you.”

Jimin chuckles fondly at the words, whispered against his lips. He knows exactly what Jungkook means. Being so close within proximity is both a blessing and a curse for looking is easy but touching is not. And oh, he just wants to touch the alpha. He takes advantage of the opportunity now, hands sliding over Jungkook’s broad shoulders and back, tracing the dips and lines, leaning further into the kiss.

Jungkook’s hands do their own exploring, but they always wander back to the small of Jimin’s back. His fingers flex against the small hollow, relishing in the breathy moan he gets in return. Daringly, he lets his hands wander lower…fingers brushing against the rise of his buttocks. Jimin rises on his tip toes and Jungkook takes that as a sign of assent, hands sliding down, fully encompassing his butt.    

He grunts softly against Jimin’s lips, surprised at how fleshy it is. Jimin’s tunics are always long and pants always loose so he’s never really paid much attention there so to feel the plumpness and curves…Jungkook can’t help the jubilation he feels. He cups and squeezes, relishing in the soft mewls he gets in return. Finally, Jungkook brings his hands back up to Jimin’s waist and breaks the kiss, knowing as the more experienced one, he needs to stop before he ends up making love to his omega right here on this cold ground.

He presses his face into the crook between Jimin’s neck and shoulder and inhales. “God, you smell so fucking good, omega.” He whispers softly, tongue and lips playing with his tender skin.

Jimin giggles as Jungkook plants another kiss on his lips before he tucks his head into Jungkook’s chest and neck, breathing hard, body warm. God, he just wants to stay like this. Forever. And with this thought, he’s reminded of another one: Jungkook is from the South and once this camp is over, they will have to go their separate ways.

 

 

--END--

 

next chap teaser: 

Jimin hops down from Jungkook’s horse as they all stop in front of Seokjin’s home. The alphas had been kind enough to take him his mile walk home on their animals before they leave the city.

As Jungkook walks Jimin to the front gates into Seokjin’s family home, Jimin feels he’s already missing the alpha. He clutches his bundle of belongings closer to his chest, taking a small bit of comfort in Jungkook’s palm against the small of his back.

 

******

Chapter Text

 

--

 

"Come on, mini-alpha…you can do it…” Jungkook holds his breath, eyes unwavering from Jimin as the omega pushes slowly past him, face in a strong grimace, a heavy rock (almost bigger than Jimin) anchored to a rope tied around his waist. Jimin had wanted to test his strength and Jungkook had been wary, but ended up giving in in the end.

Jungkook watches, encouraging verbally, proud at the omega for his determination. He’s figured out that Jimin feeds off praises and sweet words and he’s all glad to do so, especially when he gets those sunny smiles in return. As soon as Jimin pushes past the finish line Jungkook had drawn on the ground, he whoops and hollers in pride, laughing softly as Jimin promptly collapses to his back on the ground. It takes everything Jungkook has inside to keep from tumbling over the breathless omega and pepper those sweet pink cheeks with kisses.

“Something fishy is going on with them, Joon.” 

Namjoon looks up from his reading at Tae’s surmising. 

He follows his friend’s line of vision and sees that he’s staring at Jungkook and Jimin, who are off to the side of the cabin, doing strength exercises. Everything looks quite normal except for the fact that the two are just way too close together, Jungkook leaning down to peer goofily at a smiling Jimin, sitting cross-legged on the grass, their faces rather close together. And even though Namjoon can only see their profiles, he can clearly see the tender, heart-eyes Jungkook is emitting at the other. Jimin is no better, smiling so hard his eyes have disappeared under the puffed up apples of his cheeks.

“What? You’re imagining things,” he answers Tae, turning back to and flipping a page in his pamphlet.

“I’ve never seen Jungkook smile so much before. Especially at Jimin. He was upset at me for so long for making him pick the mini-alpha.”

Joon hides his smirk. “Seems Jimin has…grown on him.” 

“Hmmm.” Tae continues watching them interact, eyes almost bugging out when Jungkook reaches over and tenderly brushes a strand of hair away from Jimin’s forehead.

Okay. That was not his imagination. And the way Jimin’s ears just pinkened…by god, he’s willing to bet all his daisies that they have a secret between them. And they’re not telling him. The audacity! Now, he just has to watch and figure out what it is before he pounces on them.

 

--

 

Joon inwardly sighs out his exasperation. These two idiots just can’t be subtle. Jungkook is terrible, his eyes just unable to drift far from Jimin. If one could literally shoot hearts from their eyes, it would be Jeon Jungkook. And Jimin is hardly better himself, just so damn touchy and smiley. Joon is disgusted, but he can’t help but think it’s cute how lovesick they are. He’s expected it of Jimin, as an omega, but alpha Jungkook? His infallible leader? He’d never have believed it in a million years had he not be witnessing it for himself. 

Joon knows Tae’s suspicions have been stirred and it won’t be long before he is able to sniff out the truth. He doesn’t like hiding anything from his friend, but Jimin’s safety is at stake here. Thankfully, the camp is ending soon.

 

--

 

Jimin wakes up a little bit after midnight, the moon’s bright ray shining into his face. He peers up at the beauty and elegance of it, in awe that something so beautiful truly exists.

He sighs softly and then rolls over to his side, noticing that the bunks across from him are empty. He’s just starting to panic before he remembers the two alphas plotting earlier about sneaking out to check on the traps they had set for a fox they’d seen out in the woods – wanting to catch it for food as well as its rich orange fur to make into a purse for Tae’s omma as orange is her favorite color. 

He crawls over to the side of his bed and peeps down, silently smiling to himself to see Jungkook zonked out, on his side, facing the wall. An idea forms in his head and he moves before he can change his mind, crawling out of his bunk slowly as to not disturb the alpha. He almost gasps out loud when his bare feet hit the freezing cold floor, raising his palm up to cover his mouth. 

Jimin tries not to giggle as he starts inching towards Jungkook’s bunk. He softly sits down on the narrow side and lifts his feet off the ground silently, lying down next to the alpha. He misses him – they’ve had very little time to be together as Taehyung is always around and Jungkook has been constantly called out to help the trainers organize and clean up the compound for release date.

He just wants to breathe in Jungkook’s essence and he does so now, so tempted to reach out and touch the alpha, but resisting because he doesn’t want to disturb his slumber. Jimin quietly turns to his side and slips an angled arm under his head, staring at Jungkook’s broad back. He closes his eyes and takes a few more ample breaths, surrounding himself of the addictive scent before frowning, realizing how improper this is and that he should really go back to his bunk. He takes one last deep whiff and then slowly turns. He moves his leg first, foot already almost touching the floor when he feels a strong arm anchor around his waist, pulling him back. This time, his gasp is loud as he finds himself pulled back upon the bunk, pressed chest to chest with Jungkook as the alpha rises above him, eyes searching out the smaller’s features in the moonlight. 

“Didn’t your mother ever tell you to let sleeping dogs lie?” 

Jimin giggles at the hushed whisper from Jungkook before he leans down and presses a kiss to his forehead. 

“She said to never poke them. And I didn’t!” 

“You may as well have, creeping down here and laying with him. Indecent!” 

“That’s why I was trying to go back-“

“Too late. You’ve made your bed, now you have to lie in it.”

Jimin laughs as Jungkook teasingly growls and starts kissing his chin and neck. He wraps his arms around the broad shoulders, pressing his lips into the thick hair, relishing in the arms that wrap around his waist, pulling him in even closer.

“I miss your scent, omega.” 

Jimin grins ruefully. “I do too. I miss it more. I’m tired of stinking.”

“We don’t stink.”

“Compared to omegas, you do.”

Jungkook grunts in agreement. He loves how fresh and clean omega scents usually are. Especially Jimin’s.

“Are you going to get your scent back?” 

Jimin nods, curling his fingers through Jungkook’s thick locks, basking in the feeling of Jungkook’s breath against his collarbones. “Seokjinie has the antidote. It’s just a tea I drink and then it’s like this all never happened. We made sure to test it out before I left for the compound.”

“Well then. I can’t wait ‘til camp is over.”

“Me too, alpha. Me too.” Jimin says softly, unaware of how his labeling has affected Jungkook until he feels the arms around him tighten and Jungkook muffle a low growl against his skin.

“What?” he leans back gently to inquire. 

“Mmm. Nothing. My alpha just likes you calling him alpha.”

Jimin giggles, tracing a finger from the bridge of Jungkook’s nose down to the small mole peppering his chin, right under his bottom lip.

“You’re such a cliché barbarian.” He teases, laughing when Jungkook nips at his finger.

“They teach you these big words in school?”

“Yes. And also, to retain our modesty and innocence and respectability we should stay away from you heathens unless properly escorted.”

Jungkook chuckles. “Well. You’re proof that education sucks.” 

Jimin’s eyes widen as he bursts out into loud laughter, slapping Jungkook’s chest in mock outrage. Jungkook grins, loving their comradery. He enjoys Jimin’s presence so much and he loves hearing the other talk…from nothing to everything, minuscule to major. As he stares into Jimin’s laughing face, pink cheeks, pretty eyes and those full lips highlighted by the glowing moonlight, he realizes that he’s definitely in love. 

He remembers words his father had said to him before, that omegas are all the same until you find one that isn’t. And that one is the one that will change your life for the better forever. Jungkook is sure he’s found his change.

 

--

 

Jimin dips the tunic in his hands into the river, scrubbing vigorously to rid it of the excess soap bubbles before ringing it out. Then he places it into the clean basket next to him and prepares to take out another dirty tunic from the basket next to it. 

“Jiminie.” 

He looks up and sees Taehyung plopping down on the bank beside him.

“Taehyungie!” Jimin cheeses at his friend. Two daisies today as well! 

“Do you need help with the laundry?”

“I’m almost done. But I could use your help to carry the baskets back to the cabin.” 

“Okay.” 

Jimin turns back to work, but he can feel Taehyung’s eyes on him. 

“Are…are you okay, Taehyungie?” He finally turns to his friend. 

“Well. No. Not really.”

Jimin pauses in his work. “Oh? What’s wrong?”

“I think my good friend is keeping a big secret from me.” 

Jimin wrinkles his brow in confusion. “What do you mean?”

“Well, I just have this feeling…and I think he wants to tell me, but he’s not sure how.”

“Oh…” Jimin isn’t sure how to respond. “What makes you say that?”

“Well. I think he’s kinda scared to tell me about his secret because he’s afraid I’ll be judgmental about it. Which is absolutely untrue, he should know me by now; I’m the least judgmental alpha in the world!”

Jimin smiles softly, nodding in agreement. That, Tae is.

“And it kind of hurts my feelings that he would hide something this big from me. Especially when I already kind of know the secret myself.”

“Oh.” Jimin pauses to ponder on what he’d do if he and Seokjin were in this situation.

“What do you think I should do, Jiminie?”

“Well…I don’t know. If it was me, I would probably talk to him about it. Explain my feelings on the matter and say that I am already aware of the situation and that I’m going to support him no matter what.”

Taehyung smiles cheekily at him. “Really? You think that’s a good idea?”

Jimin smiles back. “Absolutely. That’s how I’d go about it.”

“Ok. Good. I’m glad you said that. Because…well…I know. About you and Jungkook.” 

Jimin’s smile falters, the tunic in his hands falling into the shallow edge of the stream with a loud plop. 

“Wh-what?” 

“I saw you two the other evening, coming out of the forest around midnight. I saw you both holding hands and Jungkook kissing you. On the lips.”

Jimin’s mouth falls open. He remembers that night clearly. Jungkook had snuck out with him to go tie a ribbon the bush and then they’d taken their sweet time coming back, sharing kisses and hugs and teasing one another. His cheeks bloom pink as he quickly thinks back, hoping he’d not allowed Jungkook to do anything too inappropriate…Nope. He distinctly remembers Jungkook unable to keep his hands to himself that evening as he’d kept on squeezing Jimin’s butt. Crap. 

“I’d gone out to pee and I was about to wait by the door and say hi, but when I saw you both all loving, I went to the front of the cabin to get back in instead so I wouldn’t embarrass you two.” Taehyung continues on, seemingly unaware of the omega’s blush.

“Ohhh…” Jimin says faintly, not sure what to do or say right now.

“But Jimin.” Tae turns earnest eyes to Jimin. “I meant what I said. I know…alpha-alpha relationships are taboo and all that, but I don’t judge you. Or Jungkook. Love is complicated and I completely support you two.”

Jimin bites his lip, a small smile forming at Tae’s genuineness. The world would do so much better to have more people like Kim Taehyung. Deciding he doesn’t want to hide from his sweet alpha friend any longer, Jimin reaches out and takes hold of Tae’s big hand.

“Taehyungie. I have another secret to share with you.” 

“Another one!” Tae’s eyes widen.

“Yes. I didn’t want anyone else to know, but because I value your friendship and just you, in general, I want to tell you. I entrust that you will help me keep it just a while longer.”

Taehyung nods, eyes wide, mouth open, anticipation mounting. 

“I’m not an alpha. I’m an omega.”

 

--

 

 

As Jimin finishes up his story, Tae is staring at him, slack-jawed and bemused.

“Oh. My. God.” He finally breathes out.

Jimin peers at his friend, relieved that he doesn’t have to tiptoe around Tae anymore. The guilt had been wrecking him. 

“How dare they.”

“Huh?” 

“Jeon Jungkook and Kim Namjoon. They kept this from me. Their brother. Their flesh and blood and-“

Jimin giggles. He loves Tae’s dramatism. 

“To be fair, Taehyungie. I asked them to not tell.”

“Regardless!” Tae stands up, pitting his hands on his hips.  “I will be having words with them later. I’m feeling betrayed. Understandably betrayed.” 

Jimin laughs and stands up as well, throwing his arms around the alpha in elation and squeezing him tight. 

A loud throat-clearing noise comes from beside them and they both look over to see a frowning Jungkook.

 “Oh-ho. Speak of the devil. Come. Come. I have words to speak of with ye.”

Jimin giggles at Tae’s theatrical accent and waves as Jungkook looks back to him curiously before allowing Taehyung to drag him away into the woods.

 

 

--

 

 

Jimin watches from his bent over position in front of the fire where he is preparing tea as the front door opens and Jungkook walks in. Their eyes meet before Jimin quickly blinks away, a small smile on his face, his heart hammering ferociously. It’s been a few evenings since Tae has learned of his secret and today, he hasn’t seen Jungkook since morning – he’d been out with the trainers delivering the last of their supplies to the cabin and clearing out all equipment as camp officially ends tomorrow morning.

Taehyung swings down from his bunk and stretches, loudly exclaiming that he thinks he needs a good hour long bath tonight before turning and winking at a blushing Jimin. Joon clears his throat and places his pamphlet down, murmuring that he needs one as well. The two giggle as they make to leave the cabin, swinging their towels over their shoulders. Taehyung manages to pinch Jungkook’s cheeks and coo over his glossy eyes before tucking the daisy he’d had over his ear into Jungkook’s, blowing a kiss back to Jimin before Joon finally pushes him out the door. 

Jimin knows what they are doing and he’s grateful yet nervous. He and Jungkook have a lot to talk about tonight.

He continues with his tea-making as Jungkook walks over sits next to him, their shoulders brushing.

Jimin hands over a hot cup to Jungkook. 

“What? No kiss hello?”

Jimin giggles at Jungkook’s shamelessness before he turns and tilts his head up, allowing the alpha to drop a peck on his puckered lips.

He’s just about to turn back when Jungkook reaches out with one hand and holds his face steady, dropping his lips back down, this time for a more thorough kiss as his lips open up Jimin’s, his tongue licking into the warmth, stealing away Jimin’s breath.

When Jungkook finally lifts his head, he smiles in satisfaction at the pink color staining Jimin’s cheeks, his eyes still closed, breath unsteady. Unable to help himself, he leans back in and kisses the tip of the omega’s nose. He’s just so darn cute. 

Jimin finally sighs and hooks his arm through Jungkook’s, leaning his temple on the broad shoulder. 

“Are you guys leaving immediately?”

“Tomorrow evening; but we’re only journeying a few days away to pick up some seeds my mother has asked for for her garden. And then, when we come back, we’ll pass by here…and I’ll see you once more before you leave for your land.”

Jimin bites at his lips. He’s not sure what this means and he scrounges his mind to word his questions. But Jungkook beats him to it.

“When you get back to your land, send me word immediately. I’ll come see you.”

Jimin looks up at Jungkook, a little in awe that the alpha had seemed to read his mind.

“I’ll come see you,” Jungkook continues, putting his tin cup down and reaching over for and folding Jimin’s little hands in his, pulling them into his lap. “And your parents. Along with my parents so everyone will know, that I want to take you back home with me. Permanently.” 

Jimin blinks. 

Jungkook pulls Jimin’s hands up to his lips, kissing the back of one gently before looking him in the eyes again. “I love you, Park Jimin.” 

Jimin blinks again, this time rapidly as he tries to hold back his tears. And then he’s laughing as he throws himself into Jungkook’s chest, embracing the alpha, kissing his cheek and nose and forehead, whispering back his ‘I love yous’ too.

 

--

 

Jimin hops down from Jungkook’s horse as they all stop in front of Seokjin’s home. The alphas had been kind enough to take him his mile walk home on their animals before they leave the city. 

As Jungkook walks Jimin to the front gates into Seokjin’s family home, Jimin feels he’s already missing the alpha. He clutches his bundle of belongings closer to his chest, taking a small bit of comfort in Jungkook’s palm against the small of his back. 

“I’ll see you soon, okay?”

Jimin turns and peers up into the alpha’s face, a pout already forming on his lips. 

Jungkook smiles a bit at the pursed lips. He chances a quick look around and seeing no one within vicinity, he leans down and quickly snatches a kiss, causing Jimin to flush hotly, as he smacks his arm in admonishment.

The gated door swings open at that moment and Jungkook smells the sweet scent of vanilla and sugar before another omega steps outside. He watches as Jimin immediately cries out in happiness, dropping his bundle and wrapping his arms around the other tall, mink-haired omega.

“Jimin! My Jiminie!”

“Seokjinie!” 

Ahhh. So this is the infamous Park Seokjin with the Park Jimin brother. Jungkook waits to the side patiently to be introduced properly.

Finally, Jimin backs off his friend and turns to Jungkook.

“Seokjinie, this is Jeon Jungkook, alpha from the North, of the Jeon Pack. Jungkook, this is my best friend…Park Seokjin.”

Jungkook inclines his head at the same time Seokjin does.

“Would you like to come in for some tea?”

Jungkook shakes his head politely, declining the offer. “My friends and I have a mission to tend to. We will have to leave immediately. We just wanted to make sure Jimin reached here safely.”

“Oh…” Seokjin eyes Jungkook speculatively and Jimin already knows his best friend has figured it out.

Jungkook turns and locks gazes with Jimin once more. “I’ll see you again in a few days, hmm?”

Jimin shyly nods, wanting to reach out and hug Jungkook, but knowing it’s inappropriate. He settles for a soft smile instead, hoping Jungkook can see the hearts in his eyes. 

“Park Jimin.” 

“Hmmm?” Jimin doesn’t turn to his friend, just continues watching as Jungkook joins the other two, waving them off. 

“I’m ready to hear all your secrets. But first, antidote. You stink.”

 

--

 

“Wow.” 

Jimin hums in answer as Seokjin stares at him. They’re outside in Jin’s backyard, by the pond, sitting on the swinging chair as Jimin spends the last two hours talking about his adventure. And Jungkook. 

“You’re welcome.”

“Huh?” Jimin finally turns to look at his friend.

“You know…for helping you meet the love of your life.”

Jimin giggles, smacking his friend’s knee. 

“I only met him briefly but he seems … decent.”

Jimin smiles, staring off into the distance. “Oh, Jinie. He’s more than decent. He’s kind and sweet but courageous and strong. He can be persistent and stubborn but he’s never been mean. He’s protective and-“

“Okay, shut up. He’s perfect.” 

Jimin laughs at Seokjin as he rolls his eyes but his smile betrays the annoyed tone. 

“How’s your omma?” He switches subjects.

Jin brightens up. “She’s doing better. She can actually sit up in bed now and do some reading!”

“Oh, Jinie, that’s sooo good to hear!” 

“It is. Jimin, thanks again for all you’ve done for me. I really can’t repay y-“

“Seokjinie, its fine. It actually worked out in my favor so…”

Seokjin laughs at Jimin’s blush. Adorable. “Oh!” he jumps up from his seat, suddenly remembering something important.

“I have a letter for you from your parents! It only just arrived last week.” 

Jimin claps his hands excitedly as Jin runs off into his home to retrieve it. He’s so eager to see them again; a letter from them is the next best thing. 

When Jin hands it over, Jimin quickly rips the envelope open, eyes pouring hungrily over the contents of the letter penned in his omma’s neat, perfect handwriting.

Seokjin silently drinks his tea, letting his friend enjoy his little love from home. It’s when Jimin’s smile disappears that he stops to inquire. 

“Minie? What’s wrong?”

Jimin drops the letter and turns tear-filled eyes to his friend.

“Omma…”

“What? What is it?” Jin reaches out and hurriedly wipes at the escaped tears with the sleeves of his hanbok, fearing the worst.

“She and Appa…they said...they…they’ve found me a potential mate. I’m to meet with his family as soon as I get home.” Jimin’s voice fades into a whisper and Seokjin’s arm drops back down, mouth open, shock also reverberating through his body.

Oh no. No. This is no good. Jimin, ever the filial son, would never dare go against his parent’s wishes.

 

 

--END—

 

next chap teaser:   He’s just going to have to learn to live a life without Jungkook. He’ll have to live with someone else, another alpha, allow that alpha to touch him, kiss him, mate him, fuck him, breed him, knot him…Jimin shivers, his hands getting clammy at the thoughts, his omega disgusted and repelled. And then his thoughts lead to Jungkook…laying with another omega, kissing them, hugging them, loving them, doing everything Jimin wants to do with him…and he feels his stomach rebel heavily as bile threatens to heave upwards.

 

 

Chapter Text

 

--

 

Jungkook waves to his friends as they enter the restaurant to clean up and eat while he heads on over to see Jimin. It’s been 3 days – the longest he’s ever been without the omega since meeting and he misses him something fierce. He and the other alphas had made it home earlier than they’d anticipated and he is in a fierce hurry to see Jimin again, touch him, make sure he’s okay.

Jungkook arrives to the front of Seokjin’s gated home but, before he can raise his hand to knock, the gates have opened and Jimin is standing before him. His broad smile fades somewhat as he realizes that the usual fresh scent of florals is now mixed with an underlying trace of bitterness. He’s never smelt that on Jimin before.

“Jimin?”

“Jungkook…hi.”

The small smile Jimin offers doesn’t reach his eyes. Not the kind of greeting Jungkook had been expecting. He’d thought of the exuberant hugs and kisses and sweet smiles. Before he can inquire, Jimin is already speaking.

“Let’s go out to the hills down there.”

Jungkook follows, unsure, but curious.

 

--

 

“Jungkook. I…I haven’t been truthful with you.”

“What do you mean?”

“I…” Jimin swallows over the lump in his throat as he stares out over the plain field and open sky, prettier than any painting could ever be. It feels as if the lump is trying to hold him back from lying. “I…I already have a mate.”

He feels Jungkook’s body tense up as he drops his hands from Jimin’s arms, as if the omega has some sort of disease that can be picked up unintentionally.

“Come again?”

Jimin can hear the shock and hurt in Jungkook’s voice, feel the alpha’s eyes bore into him, searching, unbelieving. He’s come to the conclusion that hurting Jungkook is the only way he’ll let go. He needs to make Jungkook hate him. He needs to hurt Jungkook so much that he will never forgive him, ever, because that’s going to be the only way Jungkook will ever let him go. And the way the alpha is staring at him right now, Jimin is sure he’s doing splendid.

“Jimin…what...what nonsense is this? I thought you wanted to be with me?”

“Jungkook,” Jimin utters out, turning to look the alpha in the eyes. “We just…we had fun. That was all. I’m grateful that you and the other two kept my secret for me but…we just can’t - won’t work out. I have duties to honor with my parents. I’d already agreed to be mated to someone else prior to me entering the camp and meeting you.”

“Jimin.” Jungkook stares into the omega’s wide eyes, knowing he’s on the border of pleading, but he just cannot believe all of this is happening.

“Jungkook. I’ve made my decision so please don’t try to convince me otherwise. I’m marrying the other alpha. I don’t…I don’t want to live in the North. I want to be close to my family. I don’t…” Jimin gulps, about to spit out the biggest lie of his life. “I don’t want you, Jungkook. I never did. I just needed you to…keep my secret while I was in there.”

Jimin hears the harsh intake of Jungkook’s breath and he knows he’s done it.

“I’m leaving tomorrow.” He forges on, afraid to pause for fear that he will break and take everything back, fess up the truth instead. “Had I known you were coming home this early, I wouldn’t have stayed. I didn’t want to see you before I leave. I’d intended to leave a message with Seokjin to let you know that I’d gone home…but I’m sorry you’re back early and I’m sorry I have to break it to you like this.”

Jimin finally turns his back to Jungkook, unable to see the hurt in the alpha’s eyes any longer, his heart shattering into the depths of his soles. He wishes for a black hole to just open up and swallow him whole because he’s seriously on the verge of breaking down and crying and begging Jungkook to take him away.

Silence reigns on in what feels like forever before Jungkook finally speaks.

“Just…tell me one thing, Jimin. Did you fake everything at the camp?”

Jimin blinks, staring out into the horizon. “Yes. I had to, to make you keep my secret.”

“Bull. Kissing me, hugging me, talking to me at night…those were real, Jimin.”

“I did that with my intended alpha too, Jungkook. The only difference between you both is that I didn’t need to pretend with him since I didn’t have any secrets from him.”

Jungkook’s breathing turns haggard, jealousy licking up his spine at the treachery. He’d been fooled. All along. When he’d thought of Jimin as special, as his omega, his heart…the other had only needed him to guard a secret. Grounding his jaw, Jungkook stomps past Jimin, deciding he’s already wasted too much time here. He’s not groveling for some lying, cheating omega. He needs to get as far away from this damned land and its damned memories.

He leaves a parting word for Jimin as he climbs aboard the back of his stallion.

“I have faith that karma will see to you, omega bitch.”

Those words ring in Jimin’s head as he continues to stand there, rooted to his spot, arms folded across his chest, staring blindly at the clouds in the distance, long after Jungkook has disappeared over the small hill. He’s leaving the grounds, the land, getting the hell out of Jimin’s life. Forever. Just how he’d wanted.

When Seokjin comes out to find him hours later, he’s still in the same spot, sitting on the grass now, shivering in the wind, tears melding with the rain, letting Mother Nature punish him for his deeds.

 

--

 

Taehyung and Namjoon watch their friend as he snaps in his belongings unto his horse from the pole they are standing against, trying to imagine how they would feel should they be in his shoes.

Jungkook had come back to the boarding house last night, moody and uncommunicative, almost biting Tae’s head off when he’d inquired about Jimin.

It wasn’t until midnight, when they were all getting ready for bed that Jungkook had finally spoken, requesting them to never speak Jimin’s name ever again. Joon had inquired, saying he would abide by that if he knows the reason and Jungkook had finally explained… Jimin had, quite literally, handed his heart back to him, just crushed into a million irreparable pieces.

Joon can’t understand it. He’s a great judge of character. There’s not a devious bone in Park Jimin’s body. What had happened?

Taehyung is of the same boat, he refuses to believe it. He’d gone to ask Jimin for himself, but when he’d arrived at Seokjin’s place this morning, the servants had explained that Park Jimin had already left for his own home.

They’ve never seen their friend like this, his broken heart adding an odd, acrimonious scent that is unpleasant and out of character.

They look at one another and sigh as they pull away from the pole, ready to travel back home now that Jungkook is done packing. They are prepped and just about to leave the barn when a figure arrives at the double doors, blocking their path out.

Just from the scent alone, Jungkook knows it is Jimin’s friend Seokjin.

“Out of our way, omega.”

It comes out fiercer than he’d wanted to sound, but to his credit, the omega doesn’t budge, actually just frowns up at him. Jungkook almost smiles, knowing why he and Jimin are such good friends.

“Jeon Jungkook. Get off your high horse and listen to me. Please.”

“There’s nothing left to say, omega. We’re leaving today, away from you and your whore of a friend.”

“Jungkook!” Taehyung’s mouth drops open. He’s never heard such vulgarity towards omegas from his friend.

Jungkook ignores him, eyes on Seokjin whose own eyes narrow into slits.

“You have a right to be mad, but no right to call my friend names. I came out here of my own volition to explain a bit about Jimin, but maybe I’ll keep that to myself after all. Jimin deserves someone better than a brute like you.” Seokjin turns around to leave.

“Speak, omega. You have 2 minutes.”

Jin turns around. He knows this is cold-eyed, apathetic alpha is not the same one he had seen a few days prior, the one who couldn’t stop his shy smiles or sweet looks when talking to his Jiminie. It is for that very reason that Jin had come out here. He loves his friend and it hurts him to know Jimin is in so much pain. He doesn’t know if this will aid in anything except cleaning his conscience and eliminating the negative picture of Jimin in the alpha’s mind.

“Everything Jimin said to you yesterday at the hill were lies. Jimin doesn’t know who this potential alpha mate is. Hasn’t ever even met him. In fact, the first time Jimin even heard of this news was right after you’d left the other day. When he was in the camp, his parents sent him a letter, just mentioning that they may have someone in mind for him. May." Jin puts emphasis on that word before continuing.

“Jimin has never met this family, doesn’t know where they’re from, nothing. He’d thought of all his options while you were gone; of running away with you the most, but he knows he can’t taint your family name like that. He could potentially start a war between his family and yours as well as the other alpha’s and Jimin can’t live with that on his head. But Jimin loves you and he knows you love him as well. So he figured…the best way to solve this dilemma is to sacrifice himself. And he knows that the only way you’d ever let him go is if you think that he’s betrayed your feelings.”

Jungkook remains frozen on his horse, the words processing slowly through his mind. The only thing he can positively grasp at the moment is that Jimin had never lied about his feelings. Jimin loved-no, loves him.

“Do you know, after you left him at the hill, he remained there until nightfall? In the same place, sitting in the rain and wind, letting nature punish him for what he’d done to you?”

No, Jungkook hadn’t known. He sucks in a harsh breath at the thought that his little omega had been sitting in the wet, chilly weather, unmoving. It’s so…something Jimin would do. Jungkook feels his heart begin to defrost.

“Listen. I love my friend. And he deserves to be happy. You’ve been with Jimin for a while, you should’ve realized his lies for what they were, but I don’t fault you. You were blinded by your emotions and Jimin…when situations really warrant so; he can be an amazing actor. But he loves you and left here last night in tears, praying only that someday, you would forgive him and find someone who deserves your love.”

Seokjin wipes at a tear, hoping that this information would help Jungkook in forgiving Jimin someday. What he doesn’t anticipate is for Jungkook to pick up his horse’s reigns, cluck and gallop out of the barn like hell is nipping at his heels. He stares back up in surprise at Jungkook’s two friends, who have started smiling at each other.

“Wha-“

“Jungkook has already found someone who deserves his love.” Joon remarks and Taehyung starts beaming.

 

--

 

Jimin sits in the tiny, obscure palanquin taking him to his next stop, two towns over. There, he will get on horseback and ride the rest of the 6 day trip home with escorts his father has sent over.

With his temple against the wooden paneling, he feels every bump and dip. He’d wanted to ride out by himself last night but Seokjin would hear none of it, sending his team of 6 servants to accompany him at least to the escorts.

He hopes the servants don’t think too badly of him, he’d been subdued and quiet last night, not his usual friendly self. He’d stayed inside and cried until his eyes were bloodshot and his body weak. Then he’d finally napped a bit, only to have the moon shine brightly in his eyes, from the cracks in the wood paneling, either as if mocking or in recollection of all he and Jungkook had shared by the light of the moon in the past.

Jimin hiccups. He wraps his arms around himself. He misses Jungkook. He wants to be with Jungkook. He feels his omega whining as well, broken that he’d destroyed a heart he had wanted to cherish forever. Jungkook could never forgive Jimin and he knows it. In his shoes, he may never forgive himself either.

He’s just going to have to learn to live a life without Jungkook. He’ll have to live with someone else, another alpha, allow that alpha to touch him, kiss him, mate him, fuck him, breed him, knot him…Jimin shivers, his hands getting clammy at the thoughts, his omega disgusted and repelled. And then his thoughts lead to Jungkook…laying with another omega, kissing them, hugging them, loving them and doing everything Jimin wants to do with him…and he feels his stomach rebel heavily as bile threatens to heave upwards.

He squeezes his eyes shut to block out the images but they just come forth, stronger and more vivid.

“Omega Jimin? Are you okay?”

Jimin snaps his eyes open at the succinct rapping on the door panel. He just realizes he’s breathing hard, as if he’s been running.

“Ye-yes.”

“We’re going to stop for a break. Please come out and get some fresh water from the stream.” The voice belongs to one of the two omega ladies accompanying him on the trip.

Jimin nods, knowing they won’t see but takes a few moments to breathe before feeling for and pushing the latch on the door, suddenly dying for some fresh air. He steps out and sees that the 4 male betas who had been carrying the palanquin along with one of the matronly omegas are all huddled in a circle at the bottom of a huge tree, laughing and eating. He looks towards the stream and sees the other omega, matronly as well, her feet in the stream as she cools off. Jimin walks over to join her, thinking she must’ve been the one to check on him.

“Are you okay, omega?” she inquires as soon as Jimin sits down by her.

Jimin nods, gratefully accepting one of her damp towels and placing it behind his neck.

“I heard you crying all last night.”

Jimin turns red. “Sorry.”

“Don’t be sorry, sweetheart. You’re allowed to cry. Mourning is a process. Even longer when it’s someone you’ve given your heart to.”

Jimin freezes. “What?”

“I heard Seokjin mention that you’d just lost your love. I can sympathize completely. After 34 years with my own love, he finally passed last year. He will always have a piece of my heart, even though I had to put him to rest. I know, somewhere up there, he’s waiting for me. And then we can be reunited again.”

Jimin stares at the older omega, mouth dropped in surprise.

“Just from your crying alone, I can tell this person had been very special to you. But you did the right thing, even if it was brief. Love doesn’t come to everyone, so when you find it, you have to grab on, hold it with both hands. Tightly!” she reaches out and clenches her fist in demonstration. “Even if you know that it won’t last long, or that the future may be rough, it’s always better to have loved and lost trying than to have loved and lost with a thousand regrets.”

Jimin looks down at the stream, her words running through his mind.

“I had a few more years with my KyuSoo, than you had with yours, but still. Treasure your memories.”

Jimin smiles a bit at her wise words. “But Auntie…my…my alpha, he’s not dead. He’s just…it’s just an impossible situation.”

The matronly omega turns to stare at him. “Not dead? You mean he’s still out there? Alive?”

Jimin nods.

“Hmmm. Is he married? Engaged?”

Jimin shakes his head resolutely. “No.”

Omega auntie’s mouth drops open. “Then what are you doing here, sweetie? Why aren’t you with him?”

Jimin blinks.

“I’m not kidding, dear, when I say life is too short to worry about what could be than to live in what is. Everyone opposed my alpha and I, our parents included. But we persevered. Nothing came easy, and we expected as much. But because life was hard, we worked even harder through all the obstacles together and that’s what really matters. That’s what made our love stronger. Don’t give up too easily, you look like a fighter. You remind me of me when I was younger. Beauty included.”

Jimin finds his first smile…and then his first giggle since he’d received his parent’s missive. He stands up, suddenly realizing that he is not going to go down without fighting. He had stood amongst a camp of alphas as an omega, he can win back Jungkook’s heart as well, even if he has to grovel down on his knees.

“We have to get to town to get the medicine for Seokjin’s omma so we shall continue on. But follow the footprints back. You should be back to town by evening’s dusk.” Omega auntie slides her small knapsack towards Jimin. “There’s a small blanket, some rice cakes and venison jerky in there. It’s not a lot, but it will tide you over ‘til you get home. Now. Go get your alpha, omega.”

Jimin gleefully giggles at her wink before promptly wrapping his arms around her small frame, thankful that she’s helped him see his light.

 

--

 

Jimin sighs. He feels like he’s lost, but he silently thanks the moon for her guidance as she sheds her dim light on the faint footprints in the paths. It’s dark now and he berates himself for having taken a wrong path earlier. It’d taken him going around 3 times before realizing he’s just been circling the same patch of trees. He sighs dejectedly as he thinks of all that wasted time. He’s already ate all the jerky and he only has one rice cake left. At this point, he’ll have to find shelter somewhere and begin again tomorrow.

So intent is he on his thinking, Jimin misses a raised root vine in the path and trips over it, sending him sprawling into the dirt.

“Shit,” he breathes out, flipping over and onto his butt as he swipes his hands together to rid the sand off his now scraped forearms, elbows and even the little side of his palm.

Jimin sighs as he sits there. He will make it back to town, yes. But by the time he gets there, Jungkook will be gone. He’d have to chase the alpha all the way to his own land up North. But he’s going do it. Jungkook deserves to know the truth and even if it gets Jimin nothing in the end, he’ll have to be content with peace of mind.

Jimin wraps his arms around his raised knees and stares up into the stars, his mind wandering to Jungkook. Again. He misses the alpha’s smile, the way his nose scrunches up, the way he laughs. Jimin would give up the last of his rice cake just to see that face again right now. He feels tears come forth and he sniffles, trying to keep them at bay, but it’s no use. He’s so disappointed in himself, for all the mean things he’d said to Jungkook, for the heartbreak he’d clearly seen in the alphas gaze. Jimin closes his eyes and hiccups, breathing in deeply, the faint smell of forest aloe and ginseng roots surfacing. He’s thinking so hard of Jungkook he can practically smell him…his earthy, minty essence mingling with the forest’s herbal plants…

Jimin brows wrinkle in confusion. The minty smell is suddenly quite strong. Suddenly, he hears the pounding of hooves shake the ground and his eyes pop open as before him, the forest trees give way as a huge stallion pops through, Jeon Jungkook astride its back.

Jimin’s mouth drops open. His first line of thought is…Is he dreaming? Did he just somehow conjure Jungkook up out of his mind?

But no, he realizes this is all sudden and real as Jungkook halts his horse a few feet away and hops off of it, heading right in his direction, fierce scowl on his face.

 

--

 

Jungkook had stopped Thunder so he can take a sip of water from his canteen when he’d smelt it. Jimin’s floral essence. Which makes no sense because Jimin should still be miles and miles away.

He’d followed his instincts and turned his horse towards the scent…following it until he’d smelt the underlying trace of bitterness – the same scent he’d noticed on Jimin as he’d lied through his teeth to Jungkook at the hill. This confirms that it is Jimin and Jungkook‘s breath almost freezes at the thought that something is indeed wrong; this odd tang coupled with Jimin not being where he should be has his heart racing as fast as his horse’s as he propels them at lightning speed towards that part of the forest.

Jungkook's breath catches as he spots Jimin right off, the small form sitting in the middle of the dirt path, staring forlornly up into the sky as the moon bathes his tear streaked face in her light; as if he is a lone flower and the moon his guide. He’s never felt so many emotions at once, fear that the omega may be hurt, relief that he seems okay, anger that he’d dare lie to sacrifice himself, but most of all, happiness simply because it is Jimin.

He hops off Thunder and strides towards the omega, ignoring his surprised, wide eyes and open mouth.

“Jung-“

Jungkook gives no warning, he just immediately falls to his knees and envelopes the smaller form into and against his own, lips pressing into his blonde hair, hands tracing and feeling his back for any kind of harm, closing his eyes when he finds none. He inhales deeply, basking in the soft floral scent, giving himself time to calm down.

Jungkook feels Jimin’s hands tighten around his own waist before he hears the slight hiccup and feels the barrage of tears against his neck, feel his lips moving, knowing the omega is trying to find the apology he wants to say.

“Shhh, baby. It’s okay. I love you.”

At that, Jimin cries even harder, burying his face into the crook of Jungkook’s neck, fingers grasping tightly into Jungkook’s cloak, as if afraid he may disappear.

Jungkook kisses Jimin’s head and hair amidst his muffled mutterings of apologies and that he didn’t mean a single word he’d said and that he understands if Jungkook can’t forgive him…

“Are you alright?”

He feels Jimin nod against his chest.

“What happened?” Jungkook leans backs a bit to look into the most adorable tear-streaked face he’s ever seen.

“I-“ Jimin hiccups and brings his hands up. “I fell.”

Jungkook can’t hide his small smile, taking Jimin’s tiny hands in his to inspect the small scratches. Jimin keeps his eyes on Jungkook, scared to blink for fear that he’ll wake up from this dream, scared that the tenderness in Jungkook’s gaze is but a figment of his imagination.

When Jungkook kisses his scratches, he really realizes this is real and that Jungkook is really here, with him, in a forest, seemingly no longer upset.

Jimin finally has had enough of the confusion and he pulls his wrists out of the alpha’s grip, tucking them under his arms as he simultaneously folds them across his chest. “Jungkook! You should be hating me!”

Jungkook peers down at him and a small smile tugs at his lips. “You’re cute when you pout.”

“Jung-!”

“Seokjin stopped us from leaving.”

Jimin’s mouth drops open.

“Your friend is tenacious when warrants. I realize why you’re both such good friends.”

“What did he say?”

“That you lied. About everything. Because you knew if you didn’t do that…I’d follow you to the ends of the earth.” Jungkook brushes his thumb against the apple of Jimin’s soft cheek as he speaks.

Jimin’s eyes well up again at the sweet words.

“I’m sorry…I really, truly don’t mean any of it. It took an elder omega telling me about how much she’d loved her time with her deceased husband for me to realize that that’s what I want. No regrets. That’s why I’m here. I was coming back. To you. I will follow you anywhere, even to the moon, Jungkook.”

Jungkook pulls Jimin back in for another embrace, his heart blooming with tenderness at his soft hearted omega. He rests a cheek on top of the shorter male’s head and murmurs out a soft, comforting: I know, I’d do the same.

“What do we do now?” Jimin asks quietly, fingers clinging onto the front of Jungkook’s cloak.

“I have a solution.”

Jimin nods, ready for anything Jungkook wants.

“Let’s get married.”

 

--END—

 

Next chap teaser: Jimin tries not to tremble too harshly as he watches Jungkook walk away from him and enter his father’s council chambers.

Jungkook had requested to speak to his father privately first, to alleviate the shock he knows he is about to deliver, before he bring Jimin so they can both make their case.

 

--

Chapter Text

 

 

 

Jimin can’t believe it. He’s….married. Sitting astride Thunder with Jungkook behind him, his muscular chest warming Jimin’s back, Jimin looks down at the small thin ring on his thumb. It belongs to Jungkook and after their impromptu vows in front of the priest and their close friends Seokjin, Taehyung and Namjoon, Jungkook had slipped it on to Jimin’s wedding ring finger and he’d had to close his hand into a fist lest it fall off. After the quick ceremony and the customary kiss, Jimin had slipped the ring unto his thumb where it fits better. Jungkook had promised to buy him a new fitted one when they get back to his land.

Seokjin had let him borrow one of his loveliest and most costly hanboks for the ceremony and Jimin had been thankful – seeing Jungkook’s expression as he’d entered the tiny wooden chapel had been so worth it. It had hit him then and there that Jungkook has only ever seen him in male attire and he’d blush to roots of his hair while Jungkook had ogled him openly, mouth wide open. Namjoon had had to nudge him to get him to wake up from his little haze.

 

And then, Jimin had kissed Seokjin goodbye with promises to come visit before the four of them had departed for the North.

Tae and Joon had been ecstatic to see him, Taehyung folding him into a tight hug until Jungkook had pried him off and stepped between the two, announcing their intent to wed. The other two had listened keenly to Jungkook’s decision and agreed, fully offering their support no matter what comes in the future.

Jimin had, once again, gotten emotional and cried at their loyalty until Taehyung had enveloped him in another long hug where Jungkook had to intervene again.

They’d started on their journey back immediately as it will take a good 7 days. Nightfall is approaching and Jimin listens to Jungkook, staying with the others and the horses while he goes into the roadside inn to secure them rooms for the evening.

“Jiminie, you’re gonna love it in our land. It’s beautiful, our springs are the prettiest, our streams are the clearest!”

Jimin smiles as Taehyung drapes an arm around his shoulders.

“God, I am so glad Jungkook married you. I was not going to be very happy had he chosen Jongseo.”

“Oh? Did he have feelings for that omega?” Jimin inquires, curious now about his new husband’s past love life.

“Eh. No. Jungkook is kind to all omegas. It’s how his omma taught him to be. But I can’t wait to see Jongseo’s face when he learns that his crush is married to someone else!” Tae laughs loudly and Jimin smacks his arm.

“Don’t be mean!”

“I can’t help it. Jongseo…he’s not the nicest person. Thinks everyone is below him just because a few older villagers proclaimed him to be the prettiest in the North. But don’t you worry none of your pretty head. Once you get there, the title will be yours.”

“I don’t want that title!”

“Too bad,” Tae says cheekily before skipping away from Jimin’s flying hand, back to his horse as Jungkook rounds the corner, returning back to let them know their two rooms have been paid for.

Jungkook picks up their belongings, allowing Jimin only to carry his small cloth satchel, urging the omega to enter the establishment and climb up the stairs to their rooms as he follows protectively behind. Tae and Joon are one door down from them; the dividing room the small hall closet.

They enter their room after bidding their friends a good night and Jimin plops down softly on the bed, his nerves a mess. He can’t help worrying about their future. Jungkook’s parents are bound to be so disappointed in them, especially in Jungkook, for marrying a stranger and without permission as well. Their marriage already seems so rocky and it’s just begun.

But then, he remembers the auntie omega’s words…that trouble arises no matter what and that what truly matters is how they solve the issues together…and he feels a little better. He’s going to stand by Jungkook’s side no matter what.  

“Hey.”

 

Jimin looks to Jungkook as the alpha slips a hand under his chin, tilting his face upwards to his. “Stop overthinking. You’re going to make yourself sick.”

 

Jimin’s lips curve into a small smile as Jungkook bends down and places a kiss on them. He loves kissing Jungkook, it’s like magic and euphoria, all rolled into one because he feels like he’s flying, yet weighted to the ground, heavy with love.

 

Jimin bites at Jungkook’s lips and he feels the alpha groan against his, a soft “tease” coming out as Jungkook pushes back. But Jimin is married and he wants to enjoy his wedding night regardless of where they currently are and what will happen in a few more days. He immediately wraps his arms around Jungkook’s waist, not letting the other go.

 

--

 

Jungkook laughs softly when he feels the arms around him. His mind is rife with thoughts about their imminent future, but he pushes them all away for now and just enjoys being in the presence of Jimin. No matter what comes, he is sure they will overcome it together because there is no way in hell he is ever letting Jimin go.

 

Jungkook dips his head and drops a kiss into Jimin’s fluffy blonde hair, basking in the summery scent that is heavily permeating the air now that they are alone in a closed room, all by themselves.

 

He’d almost swallowed his tongue earlier when Jimin had emerged in the hanbok of silken finery, all pretty and royal looking with his crescent-eyed smile and blushing cheeks. He’d made up his mind right then and there that he is going to keep Jimin draped in the softest of silks of pastel colors always, as the boy is just so damn pretty.

 

He feels Jimin lean back and pull on his vest, bringing him back down so their lips can meet again. Jungkook is in all agreement, pulling the shorter up and into his arms as he brings their bodies close together, their lips and tongues and teeth meshing, trying to forge into one.

 

It's only a few moments before he hears Jimin’s breathing speed up and little whimpers of pleasure abscond from where their lips meet. He continues teasing, licking at the plumpness, biting at the softness, egging the omega on until he can smell the strong essence of slick as it mingles with Jimin’s floral scent.

 

Jungkook’s hands wander underneath Jimin’s white tunic, coming to rest on his small waist. He splays his hands around the circumference, almost amazed at how small Jimin is, how soft his skin is, how much he wants to see every inch.

 

He feels Jimin’s breathing hitch at the touch, but he doesn’t pull away, instead, pressing his fingers more into the softness and pulling him closer, nuzzling into his neck.

 

“Jung...kook…”

 

Jungkook hears the soft, breathless way his name is said and he growls softly into the smooth skin, hands rising upwards along his slim back, taking the articles of clothing with it. He steps back slightly to lift the shirt off Jimin’s form completely, eyes roving hungrily over the smooth expanse of pale skin gleaming prettily in the candlelight.

 

As his eyes meet Jimin’s again, he sees the sparkle of innocence and arousal and it’s a deadly combination for Jungkook. He peels his own vest and shirt off before embracing Jimin again and pressing their naked torsos together, lips meeting once again.

 

He’s dreamt of this for a long while and to actually have his omega whimpering, pliant and turned on in his arms is almost too much for Jungkook to comprehend.

 

He reaches down and pulls the covers off the bed before urging and helping Jimin unto it, lowering down over him, slotting himself in between Jimin’s open legs, keeping their bodies tightly together. Jimin keeps his arms wound around his shoulders, pressing his lips on every inch of skin he can reach.

 

“You smell so good, baby,” Jungkook murmurs into Jimin’s neck, inhaling the whiff of slick and sun, restraining the urge to bite into Jimin’s softness. He needs to learn his mate’s likes and dislikes and he’s going to enjoy it all thoroughly.

 

Jungkook moves and makes quick work of freeing them both from their pants before crawling back in between Jimin’s open legs. He’d love to spend hours admiring, touching and tasting his mate’s everything, but the way Jimin is thrashing and scratching at his skin, he knows the omega is more than ready to be mounted.

 

He suckles softly on Jimin’s jawline as he aligns their crotches, allowing their cocks to rub against each other, relishing in Jimin’s small gasp as his eyes squeeze close. Jungkook reaches down and wraps his long fingers around the small girth of his mate’s penis, pumping at a soft pace, whispering for Jimin to open his eyes and look at him. Jimin complies and Jungkook smiles triumphantly at the hazy gaze of pleasure and longing he has evoked within the omega’s irises.

 

Jimin is leaking incessantly now, lots of it sticking to his hands as he keeps pumping and then he stops - right when Jimin’s eyes roll back, knowing he is about to come.

 

“Jung-!”

 

“Shhh, baby. I’ll bring it back. Our first time, I want us to come together, hmm?”

 

Jimin is breathing hard, his small hands fisted against Jungkook’s chest, legs wide, whining softly as Jungkook positions his fingers at his entrance, pushing them in and pulling them out again, familiarizing him to a rhythm as old as time.

 

Jungkook continues pleasuring his mate, watching Jimin’s face, nipping at his open lips, relishing in the harsh breathing against his cheeks, the small fingernails creasing crescent moon shapes into his shoulder blades and arms.

 

He shifts and aligns himself, pushing his cock inside Jimin’s wetness with small thrusts until he’s all the way in, Jimin’s legs spread wide to accommodate him.

 

He rubs kisses all over Jimin’s flushed face as he moves with deliberate purpose, hearing Jimin chant his name over and over and over. Jungkook follows the moans, fucking into Jimin’s tightness deeper and faster until Jimin lets loose a small scream, a hand flying to cover his mouth, the other gripping tightly at Jungkook’s arm, his cock spewing white strings all over his belly.

 

Jungkook grunts and pulls out, expelling himself on Jimin’s belly as well, watching their seeds mingle together cohesively, just like their bodies, scents and hearts.

 

--

 

Jimin tries not to tremble too harshly as he watches Jungkook walk away from him and enter the long hallway that would take him to his father’s council chambers.

Tae and Joon had separated to see their own families at the fork in the road earlier in the day and as they’d continued to Jungkook’s home, he’d mentioned to Jimin that he’d like to speak to his father privately first, to alleviate the shock he knows he is about to deliver, before he bring Jimin in so they can both make their case. Jimin had agreed.

After 7 days on the trail, they’d finally made it to the Jeon Pack’s land and Jimin’s nerves are all kinds of shot. Each night, they’d spent it together, getting lost in each other, learning one another with Jungkook constantly, patiently, soothing him. His heart is happy but his mind is in turmoil. He is only afraid for his husband because he knows how much Jungkook loves and values his pack and if the chief decided to disown Jungkook...he would be heartbroken and Jimin isn’t sure if he can fix that.

 

Jimin drops his little knapsack onto the small bench in the spotless courtyard and stares off into the bright, colorful garden beyond the koi pond. He watches as the gardener in a bright red jacket and tan farmer’s hat walk in from the corner with a pail of water. She places the pail down before dropping to her knees to pat down soil. She’s reaching over for her water pail with one hand when it slips out of her grasp and tips over, spilling all over the other patch of combed dirt she had prepared. She’s sighing, staring at her mess when Jimin decides to get up and at least help her, take a little off his mind and make himself useful while he waits for Jungkook.  

Jimin scurries over the side of the pond, calling out that he will bring her another pail of water so she shouldn’t move, just hold on to the flower she’s trying to plant and he gets a loud “Thank you, dear!” in return.

Jimin carefully brings the tin pail over to the gardener, falling down onto his knees as well, totally forgetting that he’s wearing his best garment. He watches patiently as the gardener digs a small hole and places the roots in it before piling on dirt and then asking him to pour a little bit of water onto the bloom.

“There. Now, she will bloom even more prettily amongst her family.”

Jimin giggles, thinking the gardener is correct as the bloom seems to just blossom in the midst of the others just like it.

“She’s the smallest one in the bundle, but I have high hopes for her,” the gardener continues.

“Oh! Me too! I am the smallest in my family…and I did pretty well,” Jimin cheeses and the gardener laughs. “I think we should name her. She’s the same color as the stars in the sky. How about Byul?” Jimin grins and looks over to the gardener who is looking back at him speculatively before nodding in agreement.

“I think I like that,” she murmurs.

Jimin peers up at the gardener who is smiling widely back at him, a little curious. She smells like mandarins with hints of patchouli and bergamot and is beautiful, older, like his mother and he cocks his head a bit at her familiarity. He misses his mother and she reminds him so much of her. His mother too, had spent every free moment in her garden, thus the reason they don’t really have their own gardener at home. His omma chooses to do all that herself.

“You’re a guest,” the gardener finally speaks.

“Oh, yes.” Jimin bites his lip, suddenly feeling bad for not introducing himself and just interrupting her time in the garden.  “I…uh, I just arrived from the East with the Chief’s son. They’re having a talk so I’m…just waiting.”

The gardener’s eyes widen and she bows her head, looking away as if realizing she’s in the presence of a guest and not one of her own.

Another couple of omega servants enter the garden area and both the gardener and Jimin stand up, the lady speeding away quickly muttering something faintly under her breath about the chief after one last glance at Jimin, a small smile accompanying it.

Jimin looks on, a bit confused at her abruptness, but then understanding dawns as he realizes she must’ve been summoned by the Chief and no one should dally when requested by him.

Sighing, he reaches down to dust his knees, knowing that this is not the way he’d wanted to present himself to his in-laws. Now, he’s sweaty with being in the sun and smells of dirt and leaves and his clothes are dusty. Great.

He heads back to the bench and sits down, wondering now how to break this to his parent’s without breaking their hearts. They’ve been the best they could be with him and his brother and Jimin owes everything in his life to the pair. Jimin is very close to his mother and he is most fearful about hurting her feelings by not having her present at his wedding. He sighs and stares up at the blooming trees, blinking back tears. It’s a while before he is interrupted.

“Omega Jimin, your presence has been requested in the Chief’s council chambers.”

Jimin quickly turns around to a bowing servant who’s suddenly next to him. Nodding shyly, he stands up and picks up his knapsack before allowing the servant to lead him down the long corridor to his fate.

--

“I’m so disappointed in you, Jeon Jungkook.”

 

Jimin freezes by the hallway entrance as he hears what has to be Jungkook’s father’s voice.

Oh God. This is no good. How can a child not be sad when hearing the hurt in their parent’s voices?

Jimin squares up his shoulders and walks into the room, unwilling to let Jungkook shoulder this alone. He’s as responsible as his husband is for their rash decision making. He enters and bows deeply to the chief who is standing by the back wall on a raised dais, looking at his own son standing before him with his head bowed.

Jimin promptly walks over next to Jungkook and slides a hand over Jungkook’s clenched fist, comfortingly, keeping his head bowed to his new Chief and father-in-law. He feels Jungkook release his fist and clasp his fingers between his own tightly.

“You two. This is a mess. How can you do this? You both should know this is irresponsible behavior, running away from your proper duties and then to get married without proper approval as well -“

“Alpha.”

A soft voice enters the room and Jimin tilts his head up discreetly to see the side of a woman in a long, fancy, floral printed robe enter the room from the adjacent corner, joining the Chief at the raised dais.

“You’re scaring the children.”

Jimin’s mouth drops open. He knows that voice. And that scent. And that face in that garb. He openly stares now as Jungkook’s father picks up her hand and places a kiss on the back of it before turning back to frown at the young ones.

Jimin watches as the lady- well, gardener, leans over and starts whispering into the Chief’s ears. Whatever she is saying is impactful for the Chief finally grunts and raises his brows at her when she’s done.

“Now. Let me hug my son and welcome him home.”

Jimin watches as she sails down the dais and over to them, immediately enveloping Jungkook into her arms.

“Omma.”

Jimin stares on, mouth open, as Jungkook hugs the gardener-no, his omma, whispering the word into her hair as she plants a kiss against his cheek.

Then she turns to Jimin and he inwardly gasps, his eyes widening as her smile affirms his suspicions.

“My dear. Come, let’s leave the alphas alone to talk. Join me in the garden again – this time to have tea, not plant flowers.”

--

 

“I can see from your expression that you’ve finally recognized me.” 

Jimin nods. “Besides the garden from earlier...you came to my parent’s pack. You visited us three years ago, right before I left for the West. You’re omma’s friend. I remember meeting you briefly in our garden.”

“Yes.”

Jimin watches curiously as the Omega Jeon reaches out and pours tea into two small cups. They are back in the garden, yes, but now in the small tea parlor, almost like his mom’s at home. As she hands him his cup, Jimin bows his head and thanks her softly.

“Your mother and I are friends. We went to school together in our youth but lost contact with one another. Three years ago, I’d been in your lands with Jungkook’s father as he dealt with business and your omma and I came across each other and reconnected. That's why I was there.”

“Oh.” Jimin blinks. Their parents knew each other?

“I hear you ran away from your intended.”

Jimin gulps and shifts his eyes away from the Omega’s inquiring ones.

“I...I..” he drifts off, not sure how to explain.

“You don’t seem like the type to disobey their parents.”

“Oh, no! Not at all!” Jimin’s eyes widen and his gaze skitters back over to the Omega’s. “I have never. I love my parents, I owe them everything. I...I just...I fell in love.”

“Hmmm.”

“If I hadn’t fallen in love with your son, and if he hadn’t felt the same way back, I would have gone back home and dutifully married whomever my parents had chosen for me. I understand my role as an omega child; I’ve grown up with it instilled into me. But my parents have also taught me to always fight for what I believe in, know what’s right from wrong. In this instance with Jungkook, i know it was wrong for us to not ask for permission, to not have the proper courtship and proper formalities but we met under such odd circumstances. I apologize that we rushed into our union but I cannot apologize for loving your son.”

“Tell me how you two met.”

Jimin takes a huge breath. This story may just push his new mother-in-law right over the edge. He’s sure no omega has ever gone the path he had.

 

--

 

“And no one suspected a thing? Even now?”

Jimin shakes his head. It’s a while later and he’d just finished his story, the Omega Jeon staring at him as if he has suddenly grown two heads.

Jimin fidgets nervously with the ring on his thumb, awaiting Omega’s Jeon’s reaction.

Her loud burst of laughter was the last thing he’d expected.

“You are just like your omma!”

Jimin blinks at her. “Huh?”

“When we were in school, it was a little different, more strict. Young omegas and alphas were forbidden from meeting up anywhere without chaperones. Your parents had just gotten engaged and your mother used to dress up like an alpha, binding her breasts and tying her hair into buns and rolling around in smelly dirt just to pass over into the alpha dorms after dark so she and your father could have a little bit of hand-holding time. That went on for a whole year until school let out and your parents could officially get married.”

Jimin’s jaw drops open. He’d had no idea! His mother seems so prim and proper...Oh. My. God.

“I see she didn’t tell you this part of her life. Yet.”

Jimin shakes his head, completely awed.

“She will. Once you tell her your story, she’ll tell you ten of hers. She is a courageous one.”

Jimin smiles, suddenly so proud of his own mother. He wants to see her so bad right now. His smile fades a bit.

“I liked you right off when I’d seen you in the garden 3 years ago. I saw a little bit of your mother’s spirit in you. Her beauty, definitely. I’m glad I chose you.”

“Chose?” Jimin cocks his head in confusion. He watches as the Omega Jeon reaches into the small bag by her feet and pull out a small bundle of letters wrapped in twine. She pulls out the top one and hands it to Jimin.

“Your mother and I have been in contact frequently since we regained our friendship. Seems time only strengthened our bond. We talked about our everyday lives, our gardens, hobbies, teas, husbands...children. Please read that letter, Jiminie.”

Jimin’s fingers shake a little, for reasons he doesn’t know, as he lifts the flaps of the parchment and starts reading his mother’s neat handwriting.

He shakes more when he gets to the part where his mother mentions him.

Jeon SeongEun-ah, to answer your question in your last letter, I think your Jungkook would be wonderful for my Minie! Let’s arrange a date for them to meet, yes, friend? Maybe they will not be compatible, but nothing wrong with hoping, right? I will let my Jiminie know when I next write to him that we want him to meet with your son.

Jimin stops reading and looks up slowly, his breath seizing in his throat. What he sees in the Omega Jeon’s smiling expression causes relief to unfurl in his belly and fan out along his chest and limbs, like water flowing through wooden troughs.

“You...you and omma…”

“Jimin!”

Jimin stops blubbering when he hears Jungkook’s voice calling him. He just knows that Jungkook has just found out the truth as well. Immediately standing up, Jimin picks up his long hanbok skirt and dashes off in the direction of the main courtyard, his bright belt flying in the wind behind him, mingling with the Omega Jeon’s sweet laughter.

Jimin rounds the corner and is instantly swept off his feet and swung about, Jungkook’s laughter ringing in his ears. He wraps his arms around Jungkook’s neck and laughs back, thankful that the pieces of his and Jungkook’s puzzles were truly made to fit together.

“Jungkook-ah! You heard? We were supposed to meet, you and I-”

Jungkook happily bends down and ensnares Jimin’s lips with his own, stopping the omega from anymore talking. He’s been away from his mate too long already, people around be damned. He’s happy. He’s thrilled. His father had assured him that even had Jimin not been his intended, his father would have supported him still and that had been an important factor for him. But to know that Jimin IS his intended and IS his mate...Jungkook thinks the Gods are smiling down on him.

Off to the entrance of the tea parlor, Chief Alpha Jeon approaches his smiling wife and wraps an arm about her slim shoulders, drawing her close.

“You did well, my dear. It didn’t go as planned, but seems fate had already determined they meet and fall in love before you can take credit for it.”

Omega Jeon grins, gently smacking her husband’s belly.

“I need to send a message to Junghwa and DaeRo that their omega is safe with us and that they need to come visit immediately. We have a wedding to celebrate!”

__

THE END

 

 

--

 

Gosh. It’s finally ended. (MAYBE! Im contemplating writing an epilogue!) THANK YOU so much, EVERYONE, for your wonderful, continuous support and for not giving up on this fic even though i certainly took forever to update this last chapter. I appreciate each of you readers and you guys are always in my thoughts as i write. Be good to and love yourself, always. Til the next fic, xox kisses xox

 

 

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